Best laid plans

This Christmas I was a gift Ninja. A mixture of internet and real time shopping got good results. I love giving presents. I mean I love it. I love making people happy by buying them things. My physical embarrassment and anxiety means I have difficulty giving joy as a person – in person- and in all the ways. But objects, objects that show affection or my regard, those I can do. And this year had a high hit rate. This is good.

It was a close run thing because of internet fuckuppage. But I did it. And it has, inevitably, exhausted me. A few days before Christmas I began going to bed crying, and that continued until last night. All the symptoms happened – gut rot, pain, suicidal thoughts… you name it. But it wasn’t just Gift Anxiety, but a whole collection of things that I find interesting. Family has been the main one. My Brother is unhappy in his marriage. His wife has never liked us, and completely ignores my Dad when he’s babysitting her children – doesn’t even say hello. Recently this has gotten worse and the coldness has extended to my Brother. He doesn’t know why – he looks after the children after school, he works from 5am in a bank, pays the mortgage and the school fees and, he worked out, is the majority care-giver for the children. He’s not fucking anyone else (we asked)*. She works too, equally high-end job, flying to Dubai and Vienna etc. We had Christmas with them in a restaurant. Dad and I gave them several outs – because we know that Wife doesn’t want to be there. But no. She had her Christmas with us, and made sure we knew she didn’t like it. Is this passive aggressive? I was so on edge that when we got home I went to the toilet to cry and have stomach cramps. Then I ate too much cheese.

Loneliness is the next. I live with my Dad, but I am lonely. I don’t have a pet. I have my usual human frustrations (how did my Dad lose the hoover tube?), I have a few extra human frustrations (woke up, arm not working, went to bed with arm working…), but I don’t have someone or thing (dog) to share them with. My Dad only has so much time to listen and sometimes he’s just terrible at being a sounding board, and I don’t feel comfortable talking to him. I have friends, most of which I communicate with via computer, but I don’t communicate all my frustrations, because I’d become a bore, and I don’t want to be the boring ill friend. I have friends who contact me very frequently with their various problems, and I have no problem with that – I just find it tiring. Not boring. Genuinely tiring, because I get tired easily. But loneliness is not just the lack of some living thing to moan at. It’s the lack of a life. It’s facing a limited future, being Charlotte Vale** without moon, stars or money. That is what I see. And when tired etc. this seems so likely, and I become so scared. Loneliness and Fear. Horrible.

I’m still recovering from Christmas. My Dad threw a wobbly at me by mentioning a holiday. He wants to take me to St.Petersburg and Moscow in May. We’d go with my Aunt and Uncle. This is theoretically so fucking exciting. But he mentioned cost and wanted me to look at the details. I hate knowing the cost. It’s obscene amounts of money and I would just say ‘give me the money’. But no. And having to look at details shits me up. I get stressed. I get so fucking stressed. I don’t want to fuck up. But nothing can now be sorted until January 9th as Russia is closed down. Phew.

Ish. The 9th of January sees me at the Dentist. Last week my Dad lost a tooth. Yesterday I lost a tooth. A part of a Wisdom tooth broke off in my cheek. Great. I have all my Wisdom Teeth. When I was 19 I had a jaw scan and was told I had no Wisdom Teeth in my gums. Then they started to come through. I don’t know what happened. I was shown the damn scans. How the fuck did they grow? Eurgh. They’re very tightly packed. I am not looking forward to my dentist having a go at getting these fuckers out.

Good Stuff I had a very enjoyable Christmas Dinner. I discovered a love of soft cheese and soda bread. I never used to eat cheese. Now I’m a convert. Soft cheese (like Brie) seems to calm my stomach down, make me feel full and happy and well. The farts are terrible, but I don’t care. At least I now have something other than Gaviscon I can guzzle to calm the Acid Reflux. Though I’ve been crying and have felt suicidal, I have not hurt myself. I’ve not attacked my facial skin too much. Dad liked the jumpers I got him (always a worry).

*’When would I have the time to fuck anyone?’ – that was his answer. And currently it’s true – up at 5am, home at 4pm to pick up the children 3 days a week and working til 7pm the other 2 days. His work is very understanding about his hours – in fact it’s why he can’t leave his job though he wants to. No one else is going to let him leave to get his kids. It’s why he has has to work Boxing Day, Christmas Eve, will work New Year’s Eve night. Worked the Brexit vote night, worked the US Election night…

** Bette Davis character in ‘Now Voyager’- a very good film and very forward thinking and understanding about mental health – in my opinion. The ultimate Maiden Aunt character and the ultimate and original Ugly Duckling make-over on film.

Yule wish you hadn’t.

For Christmas, I only took up internet shopping a few years ago. Before that I bought everything personally because I *was* so particular. When I bought accessories I would go through every one of the type I wanted in a shop and compare them. I mean every one – I’d take them off the shelves and spread them out. But now, thanks to my body, I can’t do that. But it’s not just my body. I used to want to make people really happy or impressed by the gifts I gave them. Now – I lament- I don’t really care. My Mum was the greatest challenge because she was not a possessions or things person. But finding some earrings she liked would give me great pleasure. My Dad was critical and never happy. My Brother is now a Dad first so… you get the picture. Now, without Mum, I don’t really have anyone to impress. But I have a new game. Dad sets a price for gift spending, and I have to find the best thing for that price. It’s very fun with children’s toys. I refuse to give children things I think they should have rather than what they want. So I ask my Brother and try to fulfill demands. It’s mainly creative craft and time-consuming things for the girls, and it was trains for the boy, but now it’s Lego.

I try to get my shopping done early – necessity and a dodgy as fuck body and fragile mind make this the norm. However I have had a string of Internet disasters, so now I’m going to have to get everything in person. And I’m not happy about it. So much complaining! I’m tired – I’ve had a ENT then a Chest Infection and then something awful happening in my guts that made me have burning aches, the squits and then terrible constipation. I’m currently hoarse of voice and painful and piled of arse. In addition to this I have my menses, which are wonderful. Just great. So I’m a fucking barrel of laughs. However, these are just the icing on my cake. My cake is made of sadness. Not depression. Sadness. I feel bleak. I am lonely, I miss my Mum, I’m worried about my Dad* and I have no energy for myself. I’ve not drawn or made anything and did not feel inspired at all by my calligraphy class. I feel old. I had an alternative bright spot earlier in the week when I stayed with friends. Talking to them made me realise I’m not dead inside, but I am very close. It’s an odd feeling, and I’ve not got to the bottom of it yet. Perhaps it’s just the Holly Jolly arsecrap around me. Perhaps it’s the fakery of it this year, given the time of doom we live in. I dunno.

If I don’t perk up by tomorrow night (when the menses hump should be passed) I’ll take myself to a gallery on Sunday. I’ve been eating properly and treating my piles with respect so it should be OK.

*He’s a grey crumpled heap. His tooth split today and he doesn’t want to talk to any friends or acquaintances, which is not him. And he’s my Dad, so of course I worry. He’s become possessive of me, which makes me sad and re-enforces my loneliness. Eurrrrgh.