Saturday, October 10, 2020

I'm Sooo Ready! The Dewey Thon Is Almost Here.

Dewey's 24hr Read-a-Thon Fall Edition 2020:
October 24

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 I am so ready for the Dewey Thon!! 

I definitely need the distraction of a read-a-thon.  It would be a lot more productive and healthier than binge-watching videos and playing video games to keep my memories and emotions from swamping me.  

Reading has been hit-or-miss since I got the news of Ed's death.  My attention span would fit in Thumbelina's Thimble.  And tears are not substitutes for reading glasses and they still just spring up out of nowhere any odd moment of the day or night.

I did have a couple of stable days earlier this week when I kept the tears at bay for most of the day and only got a bit weepy towards bedtime when fatigue had worn down my resolve.  But then on Friday--yesterday--I had to talk to the coroner again and then the funeral home to make arrangements for Ed's cremation.  I've felt like Alice in the lake of tears ever since.

Bedtime is the worst time of the day.  No matter how tired.  To keep the tears at bay I have keep myself distracted and the quietest way to do that is binge watch videos with earbuds or play silly match three video games until my eyes are crossing.  But even if I'm falling asleep over them by the time I've put away the device and settled among my nest of pillows and blankets with the light out I end up watching the video of my life on the back of my eyeballs and if I don't want to devolve into the silent head-ache inducing ugly cry, clutching my waist in the fetal position I must nip it by sitting back up and pulling out a distraction or getting up to wander from room to room or sit at my desk and fiddle with aps or aimlessly browse websites from my overloaded bookmarks or cull my email inbox...or...or...

Those last listed activities are not as unproductive as it sounds as they are part of the sort/organize project that has been the theme of my year. There are the bushels of physical belongings that I've blogged about but there is also a lot of electron belongings: files of manuscripts, notes, graphics etc and my email from inbox to archive and thousands of browser bookmarks.  But late night after a long day with morning on its way and no way I can just sleep in with Mom's wake up ritual my not conducive to efficiency.

Distracting myself from the grief this way is also keeping sleep at bay and putting my whole sleep hygiene program at risk which puts my mental health at risk and would lead inevitably to having to go back on meds.  And I don't want that.  I don't want my thoughts and feelings wrapped in cotton candy and marshmallow cream again.  But I can't let sleep depravation take over my life again either.  So I've struck a compromise.  I'm taking the Trazadone at night for the days Mom is at home (Sunday night through Wednesday night and optional Thursday night as she leaves before lunch) but I'm not taking it on the weekends she spends at my brother's.  

Those two calm days I had this week followed 8 hour sleeps induced by the Traz.  And yet I won't yet let that tempt me into a daily regimen as I refuse to be addicted/dependent on it again.  It messes with my vision which I cannot afford. It takes my eyes several hours after waking to be at what passes for their best.  It's not just my vision.  I'm clumsy also for hours after waking.  I'm sure the vision issue contributes to this but it isn't just eye-hand coordination.  It's like my brain isn't mapping where my body is in space and in relation to other objects and this includes muscle memory not just sensory input from my eyes.

Which means productivity is down.  Waaaay down. Because mornings between Mom's wake up routine and lunch have been my 'office hours' so the work I had been doing then gets pushed back until Mom is in bed at 9 and when I've finally started getting productive work done on my WIP or the sort/organize projects or blogging I am tempted to push back the time for taking the Traz until it's nearly too late as I must give it nine hours to clear my system enough I can manage my morning duties with Mom by 9am. 

But I can't call these weepy, wallowing weekends sans Traz productive either. At least not regarding WIP or sorting stuff.  This may not be sustainable long term but I'm hoping that giving the emotions permission to exist and express themselves will pay off in the long run as this is after all just another sort/organize project:  memories and emotions.  It is the repression of them that is often at the root of clinical depression and I know that has been one of my issues.

Here's hoping that I can do without a wallowing weekend by the 24th.  Weepy I can tolerate for the read-a-thon as I have plenty of audio options.  The ugly cry and the choking sobs and gritted teeth, hiccups and hanky honks and tear soaked neckline and hugging pillows in the fetal position and burping swallowed air are all things I hope I'm ready to be done with by then or if not at least able to be distracted from for 24hours.  

The Dewey Thon has been an integral part of my life since 2007 so I think in two weeks time grief can take a holiday for 24hrs.

It will also be something I can do to honor Ed's memory and memories of some of our best times together.  It was in the high school library we first started hanging out together and developed a friendship around reading and philosophical debates.  One of our favorite activities was sitting side by side reading. He even participated in the first several of the Dewey Thons with me tho never for the full 24 hours he was very partial to his sleep he was.  

So if I can set my mind to hold the space of the Thon as a space I'm sharing with Ed the way I knew him when he was still himself that could be a healing experience. 

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