Yesterday, January 31, 2021, I lost two women to Covid. These two women were important in the shape of who I am today. I’m just so very tired. I’m so very tired of people underplaying the importance of Covid. I’m so very tired of people finding the grey areas of all things rules associated with a nasty ass highly infectious disease. I’m just tired.
Last night, I was distracting myself from my own thoughts by texting with a dear friend far away. Ok, California isn’t that far, but whatever. Our words were light and breezy and mostly meant to shake me out of my funk, but I realized as I finally rolled over to go to bed, what the actual hell am I waiting for?
I have the words “if not now, then when?” literally tattooed on my body. I’ve spent the better part of the past 365 days, like many with my life on hold.
I’ve waited a long time for other things to happen.
What the actual feck am I waiting for?
Life is precious.
Life is short.
This morning, I am getting my second dose of the Moderna vaccine and I’m thrilled. To get a wee bit more protection so that I can feel less exposed. I have an auto-immune disorder that would be highly annoying should i get the rona, so I follow the rules. I’m not always a rule follower, but when you are single, living by yourself and realize that you can actually do something to protect yourself, you do what you can do to be safe. I’m both jealous and annoyed with people that have been acting like they are bullet proof.
Yesterday, two women that I know died from Covid. One had health issues. One did not. One was 47 years old, a damn marathon runner, who never smoked, who was just healthy. She got a blood clot in her lung and now she is gone.
Covid doesn’t care who you are, what party you vote with, or what amount of privilege you roll around in nightly. There is no rhyme or reason to this disease. Two people one day. A woman who showed me big love and welcomed me into her home when I was a teenager and another woman who was just a goddamn good friend.
As I sit here gathering my thoughts, I have had to check the calendar thrice to make sure that it is indeed only January 10, 2021. I can’t decide if I feel like it should be September or January 2. Either way, we are living in some crazy times.
A dear friend said to me earlier in the week (or a month ago, I don’t know) “how do people with multiple kids do all the things?” I realized that I don’t know a single person that isn’t tired. Singles, marrieds, struggle bussers, etc. Everyone I know is just bone crushing tired. Tired of all of it. Tired of some of it. Trying to constantly keep all the “things” moving in the right direction. I saw another friend on Friday and I asked him twice “are you actually ok?” He was exhausted. My three-hour marathon call last night was with a friend in the UK as a result of his three-day-long insomnia. He was exhausted but unable to sleep and I couldn’t get my brain to just shut down. I’ve been using the Headspace app to try to slow down my brain throughout the day. Every night, I spend about 30 minutes just breathing slowly trying to shake off the day. It’s a lot.
It’s a lot for everyone. We’ve been dealing with Covid-19 since March. Here in the States, it’s been a noisy, loud, scary year. It’s just a lot.
Earlier today, I was trying to plan my week prior to going to a friends drive through baby shower (sorry friend), when I started having a full on meltdown about life, and subsequently passed out cold for at least 4 hours. I woke up discombobulated because, well, it’s January and was dark outside when I finally shook off the cobwebs. I woke more tired than I was when I passed out.
It’s ok to admit that everything is a lot. There isn’t an award given to the person who lies to themselves the most about everything being ok, perfect, fine. I promise. There is no instant martyrdom for faking it right now.
This upcoming week, I have to navigate an insurance claim (screw you hot water heater burst), an HVAC issue as a result of the aforementioned insurance claim, work, more work, and trying to get the gumption to take down my damn Christmas. It just taunts me now. My front porch looks like the end result of an inflatable post-Christmas orgy- all of the inflatables that were brilliantly tackying up the front yard, are now currently hanging up on my porch trying to dry off so that I can actually pack them away. 10 ft Santa is indeed face down, ass up as I type.
It’s important that we are truthful with ourselves and those closest to us. It’s ok to say “I’m frustrated, I’m tired, I’m (insert appropriate feeling here.) We’ve got a mountain of work starting this week- My job is to not only make sure that we do a damn good job, but to keep an eye on my team. What we see on a daily basis is a lot and it’s only going to get more in the next few weeks. Social Media Management is not for the week. I’m not talking about making some fun chit-chatty posts for local businesses. I’m talking about protecting national brands from the ongoing onslaught of keyboard defense lines.
It’s also important for me to make some time to clear my brain. I got the vaccine a week ago (again, it feels like a year ago), and I’m so close to being comfortable again to go back to my Pilates Studio. I miss that 50 minutes of sweat and stretch and giving my brain a break from any/all screens. I plan on actually scheduling walks this week and a reminder to eat lunch. If nothing, it will give my eyes a break and a moment to breathe (thanks again @headspace.)
I’m not so good on the non work communications right now. Texting feels exhausting. Phone calls are just hard. I feel like I have nothing to say except “yep, that sucks.”
By the time this posts, I will be digging into dinner, trying to figure out how to get it all done this week. I have to keep reminding myself, that whatever I get done, will be done and the rest can wait.
I hope this week is easier for every single person I know.
PS- if you’ve got this far, please please please enjoy this new little bit of ear candy:
The world was a very different place in 2010 and I was hopelessly determined that I was immortal. I was in my early 30’s. Fewer shits were given to just about everything and anything. For better or for worse, I now know more and can’t ignore reality. In 2010, I still had a pretty monogamous relationship with Marlboro Lights 100. I maintained a lovely year-round glow thanks to the super blast of tanning beds and I am not even sure I knew what fiber was. My hair was close to its original color and due to the ongoing consumption of smokes, I was able to keep my ass in somewhat check. Fast forward to today. I’m researching ways to increase fiber in my diet so that I can increase my protein consumption and not have stomach issues. I care more about fiber than I care about going out for happy hours. Oh, that’s right, we can’t really do that these days. My relationship with Philip Morris has been on mostly ice for years. Despite the pale white glow of my legs, I can’t bring myself to go tanning. EVEN THOUGH I WANT TO. BIGLY.
Life just changes. Focus changes. You watch people start to struggle with things and you start quietly adjusting.
For me? I need to drop some lbs to help get my whoremoans under control. (Spelling 200% intentional.) Estrogen holds fat. Excess estrogen is a pain in the ass and literally could cause big issues. In order for me to lose weight, there is an actual trained medical professional working to help me figure out how to eat/lose weight without making my stomach sad. Smoking is bad for my lungs and skin. This isn’t opinion, it’s just pure fact. My morning skincare routine involves 7 different products. It seems stupid to undo some seriously good work on my skin by picking back up one of my favorite bad habits.
Tanning? God, this is the hardest. I can give up Doritos, Fritos and late-night scooby snacks. I’ve already broken up with smoking. If I were to be completely honest, I would admit that I love the way I feel when I get out of a tanning bed. Energized. Fueled with well, possible skin cancer. I’m not planning on going to the tanning bed, but I do miss some color on my body. I don’t want to end up one of those cautionary GIF’s about the dangers of UV exposure.
Most of the fun stuff in life leads back to cancer and I’m just sick of it. I’m sick of people getting the raw end of the cancer deal. Too many people I know have fought the cancer battle. Many cancer patients have won the battle, but the number of funerals I’ve attended has increased over the years.
I’ve lost count of the many people I know have actually fought and won the battle. I know how many have lost and it just bums me out.
2010 Kate was a big selfish asshole. She thought she was immortal. Without limits. Without cares. Treated my body like a legit rusty carnie ride.
Now, out of respect for myself, and others that I give a shit about, I reign it in.
Getting older and I guess wiser is not as fun as I thought it was going to be.
I’m writing this evening. Today is November 3, 2020. The eleventh month in the year of Covid-19. My 43rd year. On this night, I am gainfully employed. I have a leadership role at a company that I enjoy. I own my house. I have a lot of thoughts I don’t share with the majority of humans. I listen to music more than I watch tv. Tonight is election night. The candidates are President Donald Trump versus Former Vice President Joseph Biden. It’s a shit show. I have the privilege that many yearn for. I say this to keep myself grounded. On this night, where I can’t bring myself to watch election returns, I think about those who are genuinely afraid of the outcome. Folks who don’t have it as easy as I do. Folks that are judged by their religion, the color of their skin, and/or who they chose to love, much less how they identify. I am neither Republican nor am I a Democrat. Neither party speaks for me and my beliefs anymore. I respect people enough not to tout bullshit platitudes about being upset about an outcome of an election. I am confident in myself enough that I don’t hide behind religion to justify a vote for someone who is not aligned with my beliefs. Also, I think we as a nation, one that really loves religion to remember that there should be a separation of church and state. It’s kinda a thing that we forget a lot. I am aware enough to know that many people are actually hurt by the way people vote. People have the right to be hurt, just as much as others have the right to vote for the candidate that suits them. Here is the thing. Many people get on their high horses and talk about their principles. Democrat. Republican. Conservative. Cool, you do you. Me? I’m just trying to navigate a life different than many. I believe in different things. I value different things. I am smart enough to realize that I have a stupendous amount of privilege that others will never have. I know that there are folks, exponentially more educated than I that won’t have the chance to be at a job like mine, because of the color of their skin, the texture of their hair, or the way they spell their last name. I don’t believe that anyone should be locked in cages. I also think it’s bullshit that I, as a single female, pay more in taxes than a family of four does. Side note, it also annoys me that I can’t use my dogs as dependents, but that’s another rant for another time. I don’t give TWO shits about who you chose to love/marry/sleep with. I don’t now, and I never will. If you want to have a gun, go for it. If you need artillery of high powered war guns, I would like to understand the why, but that’s just me. I’m a clutz that has zero desire to shoot someone or to have a pile of guns in my house. But that’s just me. I do like it when my friends go hunting and bring me back pheasant and venison. Oh yes, I am a woman. I have, currently, a uterus. I really don’t think anyone should make rules about what I can or can not do to my own body. Here is why- go talk to your God and pray for me if you must, but I like to believe in that silly ole separation of church and state. Let me handle my body and deal with the consequences after I take a dirt nap. I laugh that people are absolutely twitterpated about being asked to wear a mask, but have no problem telling women where they can/cannot get birth control or abortion if needed. I also bigly believe in providing sex education to teenagers and making access to birth control easy and not shameful. More birth control, fewer pregnancies, less need for abortions. Many of you are hoping that things are going to be better tomorrow. Me? I’m more afraid of tomorrow than I was yesterday and today.
One year ago today, i was back in bed, resting after my third ankle surgery. And by “resting”, i mean, sleeping with a combination of morphine, Benadryl and edibles.
One year ago today, I couldn’t get up on my own to go to the bathroom. I needed a scooter to get down the hall, and then ultimately a walker to help me for the next few weeks.
If we were to look back on the past 365 days, I really don’t have many words to describe this year.
Actually, here is a list of random words that immediately comes to my mind: bullshit, exhausting, painful, quiet, hard, long, successes, failures, frustrations, COVID, ‘rona, recovery, pt, stability, sadness, death, laughing, secrets, relief, tired, ‘rona, stuck, strength, resiliency, bullshit.
Yes, I started and finished the list with the same word, because it fully articulates the way I feel about the past 365 days. just a pile of bullshit with some good stuff mixed in.
Recovery from that last surgery was awful. It was physically hard and emotionally draining. My precious surgeon passed away in the midst of my recovery and I felt absolutely lost without him. It was a humbling experience of humility, failure, and occasional laughter. people expected me to bounce right back. I didn’t have it in me. I tried so hard to just rally and do the thing, but relearning how to walk twice in a year is more than most people will ever have to do post the first time you learn how to walk.
Because the last surgeries recovery was so rough, I wasn’t socializing as much as I normally would- I mean, who wants to hang out with a cranky unmedicated me? Not me. Also, “medicated” me is also a joy. and by medicated, I mean the kind that you can buy in California, Michigan, and Colorado. Friendships shifted during this time.
The holidays came and went in an ambivalent blur. Side note, I’m still feeling meh about the upcoming holidays.
January hit hard and I back was on the road.
I got sick my first day in San Francisco.
Really sick. I had a multi-day migraine, with a deep dry cough when I was in San Francisco and then dragged myself to new york still sick with what everyone was saying was just sinuses. um, ya. I felt so shitty I didn’t go to the dispensaries. In retrospect, it was most likely not a sinus infection. I was sick for weeks with a fever that made me want to blow my brains out.
I started to feel better in march. I had plans. I was going to go to SXSW and then hit the road and go to the keys, followed by countless work trips. I was finally feeling strong enough to be able to do things again.
You plan, and g-d laughs.
That nasty bitch ‘rona showed up just as i was finally feeling good enough to do things and shut us down.
Everything from march-august was a blur. i had many people in my life get sick. one died. another died from complications. the numbers spiked. it sucked. i was watching everything from my house, because well, i couldn’t confirm that i had already had it, but sure as hell didn’t want to pick up what i was watching people deal with.
The best part of the ‘rona? My little pod of humans. We managed to make the best out of what we could, fueled by swimming, outdoors, and endless boozy seltzer drinks.
Took a trip home. That was good and got me some really important people time. The drive was just as good as the trip. I had some mission-critical thinking time. I needed to sort out a lot of things that were coming at me.
When I came back and life just got intense. Everything got intense. I looked down at my cankles and decided that they were as good as they could get and I started walking again. I decided to walk 200 miles by the end of the year. Walking helps clear my head. I sweat and forget life for a while. I solve world problems while making sure I don’t trip and fall.
Since mid-September, I’ve walked 65 miles. that’s not a ton, but for someone that couldn’t walk around the block one year ago today, I’ll take it.
This year is a year I will never forget (even though I would much rather forget about 89% of it) and it’s still not yet over.
If you need me, I’ll just be socially distancing from most people and walking.