Saturday, October 18, 2014

Apartment Shopping

Lately whenever I get really pissed at hubs I start online apartment shopping.  Lately it has become almost an obsession.  I can very clearly picture myself walking into an empty modern loft apartment with nothing.  Absolutely nothing.  No clothes.  No furniture.  No books!  Nothing.  I am there to start my life over.  A new beginning.  A new life from scratch.  

Thing is I just realized that what I'm really after is walking away from my current life.  I want to run away.  I'm so tired of it.  The illness.  The lack of friends.  The lack of family support.  I'm tired of trying to figure things out.  While I'm very very busy trying to learn biology and a way to fiddle with my supplements so that I get even slightly better, my marriage is dissolving into a puddle.  I'm so busy trying to fix me that my marriage is failing.  I don't know how to fix that either.  I can't fix me and I can't fix my marriage so I just want to run away and start over.  From scratch.  Maybe I'll do better next time.

Of course when I realized all this I knew it was impossible.  You can't run away.  Problems have a nasty habit of following you.  I won't get better by moving.  I might get slightly better if mold is involved in my illness but that is a risk.  And I could move with my husband instead of striking out on my own which is this fantasy.  He is never a part of it.  I'm on my own.  

The horrid reality is that I am not well enough to live on my own.  I'm too sick.  I can't walk away.  I can't even pack.  Heck I can't even plan.  On my best days I manage to make both breakfast AND dinner instead of collapsing in a heap by 4pm.  I can't clean.  I can't do laundry.  I can't do dishes.  I can barely cook.  I can't run away.  Hell I can't even walk away.  I need to be pushed in a wheelchair.  
Not sure where this leaves me.  I like my fantasy that I've woven together.  I love the idea of starting over.  Reality bites.  I'm in limbo for now.  

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

It's Not Okay

I came from a verbally and physically abusive household.  My father was a mean drunk.  I am both uncomfortable and used to meanness in my relationships.  I find that more often than not I just need to hear from my therapist that "It's not okay to be treated or spoken to like that."  It scares me that often I don't recognize certain behaviors as mean; that I consider them normal; that I need someone to reality check my relationships for me because I'm blind to mistreatment.  Instead I feel vaguely uncomfortable and can't quite put my finger on why and I keep trying to figure out what I did wrong.  Once the therapist tells me that it isn't me, that the other person was behaving badly, then I am swept with relief.  It isn't me.  That wasn't okay.  That person was behaving badly not me.  Once I get turned in the right direction I can figure out how to handle things.  However, more often than not I need that prompt, "It's not okay."

Where I'm going with this is my crappy vacation.  I only get to go on one vacation a year.  I don't travel from my house for overnight stays elsewhere except on 4th of July, when we visit his longtime friend, and a short vacation.  This year didn't go well at all.  Things that went wrong, let me count the ways:


  • Hubs treated the whole thing as my consolation prize for letting him drive out to Chicago to see his brother.  That is not okay.  My vacation shouldn't be a consolation prize but a time to enjoy each other's company going someplace together.
  • Hubs mentions the vast sums of money it cost him more than once.  This is not okay.  If we are that strapped for money then I'm fine with staying home or figuring out something that is within our budget.  But do NOT complain after the fact about how much it cost you.  It cheapens the entire thing and make me feel like a bloodsucking leech and somewhat worthless.  I take the message as 'you are not worth spending my money on'.  
  • Hubs kept his nose in either his phone or ipad the entire time we were together.  This is not okay.  At least attempt a conversation.  This was supposed to be a time to connect and talk and get to know each other again.  Instead I feel like I'm interrupting at best and uninteresting or a big bother at worst.  Again I take this as 'you are not worth my time'.
  • Hubs complained the entire time we were walking (he was walking and pushing me in a wheelchair) about how difficult it was to push me and how stinky the poop plant was we happened to go by.  This is not okay.  Don't pick an activity and then complain how difficult the activity is and how much I should be thanking you for doing something nice for me.  Honestly, if you are going to complain the entire time about how it is a such a chore then I would prefer to stay home.  It makes me feel horrible.  I get the message 'you are not worth the effort'.  I shouldn't have to grovel when you show me the slightest kindness.  It makes the entire relationship into some kind of dominant subordinate dynamic which isn't healthy at all.  I also feel like I have to beg to be let out of the house and no matter how crappy the event is I have to kiss your shoes to show how much I appreciate the attention and Herculean effort you put into the event.  That is really fucked up.
  • Hubs didn't help with ANY of the planning but complained when he couldn't find someplace to eat that he liked.  That is not okay in oh so many ways.  I'm too sick to plan stuff.  I'm too sick to coordinate stuff particularly after a long car trip.  I'm too sick to realize that we could take a taxi to go eat at a place where there isn't any parking or wheelchair access.  I can't look up places to go or places to eat when I have no maps and you are watching movies on the ipad i.e. no computer access.  I need your help with planning and execution.  It shouldn't be all on me.  It should never be all on me.  This was even a problem when I was well.  I was the one that was supposed to plan the trips.  It is a long standing pissing match that I can't participate in anymore.  
  • Hubs makes me feel guilty for making him help with anything.  This is not okay.  Planning should be a shared activity.  Picking out the destination.  Picking out activities.  Picking out restaurants.  Guilting me into planning the entire trip and then coming up with some excuse as to why it needs to be completely scrapped isn't cool.  You did this to me even when I was well.  Not cool.  Very not cool.  The whole "let's wing it" thing doesn't work either particularly now that I'm so sick.  This needs to be a shared activity.  Lets hope that planning our anniversary dinner redux goes better.
  • Hubs getting a non handicapped room because hey its cheaper.  Also SO not okay!  I need the room to get the wheelchair into the room and the grab bars in the bathroom.  The seat in the shower is a bonus as well.
  • Hubs moved us out of first hotel to a second cheaper hotel.  It's not okay.  Moving me constantly is such a bad idea.  This one is partly my fault since I agreed.  I shouldn't have.  The first hotel was nice.  It was in a good location.  The bed was comfortable.  It was a handicapped room.  Being cheap is not a good reason to make me uncomfortable on my one and only vacation.  For a $100 savings I had a terrible nights sleep, several days of severe pain, a week of CFS crash, a miserable last day of vacation for me, a horrible dinner that probably added to my pain and misery the next day.  So not worth the $100.  Then he had the nerve to complain that I didn't feel good.  Well no shit Sherlock!  
His behavior is probably just his temper tantrum at my illness coming out but that doesn't mean that it is appropriate.  He shouldn't be taking his anger at my illness out on me.  This vacation went wrong in so very many ways.  It wasn't until my shrink told me that this wasn't okay that I realized that it wasn't all me.  That his behavior wasn't acceptable.  That things need to change.  It needs to be different next time.  Now I just need to learn how to manage it for next time.  To make it better.  To make it more equitable.  To make it okay.  Let the planning begin.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Probiotics

There are tons of probiotics on the market and I really haven't looked into them.  I try to get most of them through eating sauerkraut and fermented beets and drinking kombucha.  The bug count is orders of magnitude higher in food than pills so are a much better source.  I keep buying kefir but don't drink it regularly.  I do use it to make creamy salad dressings and smoothies.

Anyway, I do have four probiotics that I try (not very diligently) to rotate through:

  1. Saccharomycis boulardii: this was prescribed to me by my food knowledgeable CFS/ME doctor and is available in the fridge section of your health food store
  2. Biffida: my treating CFS doc put me on this after my stool test showed I was deficient
  3. Fermented fish oil: recommended by real foodies everywhere
  4. Lactobacillus plantarum:  which I discovered in this article and thought might be helpful in my case  http://cfstreatment.blogspot.com/2014/09/what-is-hiding-in-your-gut-more-on.html
As part of my new action plan, probiotics are going to be a big part of healing my gut further.  I've come a long way in this department but am still having the occasional heartburn and am now having trouble with cruciferous vegetables.  Even my beloved sauerkraut is giving me heartburn.  Sigh....  Time for a revisit.  

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Tweaking Treatments

After my mom's visit, where I was running around a lot, and then my vacation, which didn't go as I had planned and I had an emotional meltdown, I didn't recover very well.  Lots of fatigue and brain fog.  I had a week off but spent a good deal of it in bed.  I kept hoping that things would improve but instead I kept getting slightly worse.

I was scared that it was mold.  It was the only thing that made sense to me.  I was still following Yasko's protocol closely but it no longer seemed to be working.  The under/over methylation argument didn't make sense because I had symptoms that were on both lists.  I was convinced that it was the mold so I was having very anxious moments where I was ready to walk out of my house into a sublet to get away from it.  I was even sublet shopping on Trulia.

Then I read one line in a 500+ page book that changed everything.
L-glutamine deficiency causes brain fog.  
I went to my kitchen took down the tub of glutamine that had been gathering dust on top of the microwave since I bought it months ago and cracked it open.  I took the dose listed on the tub, one teaspoon which is five milligrams.  I started to feel better within the hour.  Holy COW!!!  That was it.  I've been so fixated on GABA that I missed this.  I took someone's word on an internet forum that the glutamine would change into glutamate and that glutamate was EVIL, BAD, HORRIBLE and would do bad things to me.  Well glutamate is also a neurotransmitter that is needed for the brain to function properly and has to be in balance with GABA not eliminated entirely.  I'm also not sure the glutamine changes to glutamate anyway.  Either way it doesn't matter since the stuff WORKS!  I am now dosing at the lower rate of 1/8th of a teaspoon per day and am able to read again and my good mood is back.  No more meltdowns or 'my world is ending' moments.

Here is the info on this fantastic book I found that just got published.
Treating and Beating Fibromyalgia & Chronic Fatigue Syndrome by Dr. Rodger H. Murphree, published by Harrison Hampton, Birmingham AL.
Now that I can read again, I'm putting together a new supplement protocol based on his book.  I'll be starting with a liver detox due to my MCS which is fairly simple: ALA and milk thistle for one week, multivit the second week and then ramp up on 5HTP the third.  Then onto adrenal heal.  Then diet again which will probably be Paleo AIP.

I'll integrate it with Yasko's info and include some aspects of methylation protocol in with Murphree's info. Although he mentions methylation and even MTHFR in particular he just says to go see a doctor since you shouldn't be supplementing for MTHFR on your own.  HA!  Both my CFS/ME docs didn't know squat about this and they are both leaving their practices.  How the heck am I going to find a doc that is versed in both MTHFR and CFS/ME?  So I am on my own.  Luckily due to the glutamine my brain is working for a few hours a day again so I have to figure this out myself.  But I digress.....

I need to back track here a little.  I've been on Yasko's short cut protocol since April.  I've slowly added in more supplements to work on the CFS/ME part of the puzzle that isn't addressed by Yasko (she specializes in Autism not CFS/ME).  Slowly I've gone from six pills and three sprays to 20 pills and three sprays.  I've also started to have some weird side effects crop up such as lots of waking, tons of hot flashes, and restless legs waking me up and not letting me get back to sleep.  Just how does someone with severe CFS/ME deal with restless legs???  It isn't like I can jump up and walk it off.  Geesh.  So I had plateaued and the restless legs was annoying me and my cats who like to sleep on me.

I kept trying to read Yasko's material to sort things out.  I love her to bits and thank her profusely for making her books available for free and designing compounded supplements specifically for MTHFR.  However, my one big criticism of her work is that her writing is scattered.  She knows her stuff really really well, more than anyone else I've looked into.  She does use nice analogies but she has not done a good job of accreting all of that information down into a single well written source.  You are constantly being referred to chapters of other books she has written or papers available on Scribd or YouTube vids or the online forum that is run by her cohorts.  I end up with multiple sources up on the screen jumping between them trying to follow the complicated logic.  I have a hard enough time following one source never mind this scattershot style of writing.  I keep running across the line "I've already written about this.  Just look it up in xyz." or some such variation.  I also have no idea who the people are on the forum that answer questions.  I've used it and gotten some good answers but again they post Yasko quotes from multiple sources without the context of the quote so I have no idea of the original source or if it is applicable to my case.  I have to trust these random folk on the internet.

The other issue I have with her is that she is too general.  If you use any of her tools or tests or go through her protocol you end up with a supplement list a mile long with the instructions "try a few and if they don't work for you try something else on the list".  Yeah, that isn't helpful at all.  Many of the suggestions are compounded supplements with TONS of ingredients in them.  Trying to sort this out with brain fog is next to impossible.  I finally had a good day this week and started cross referencing the ingredient lists of the 50 or so supplements recommended to me based on my genetics and hair metal analysis test.  Turns out they all overlapped significantly to the point where I whittled the list down to four or five pills.  When I looked up another vendor I found one that whittled it down further to a single supplement.

I still have work to do to figure this out but I'm pretty much done chasing my tail with Yasko.  Now that I've found this new book I'm ready to move on.  I might return to Yasko later as I trust her for my source of MTHFR info but I need my brain working better before I can do that.  So for now I'm switching over to Murphree's protocols starting with his MCS instructions.  Not only does he list supplements but also dosing information.  I'm quite excited to try this out.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Torchwood

This is probably going to be the oddest TV show review that you are ever going to read and yes it is going to be somewhat uncomfortable.

I LOVE science fiction.  I've read it since I scared myself silly back when I snuck about reading one of my dad's books when I was 12 or 13.  It was, to me at the time, a very scary story about an invisible monster alien.  Ever since then scifi has been my favorite genre.  Needless to say the bulk of my TV and movie watching are science fiction shows.  I loved the first three seasons of Torchwood which is an adult version of Dr. Who, a show I've watched since I was a kid when Tom Baker was Dr #4.  The third season didn't go so well and almost got the show canceled until Starz picked it up for a joint season with the BBC.

I was very angry that Starz locked the fourth season out.  Only Starz subscribers could see it.  I was very angry at this turn of events.  I wanted to see the last season.

This past month I decided to subscribe to Amazon Prime so that I could get access to Falling Skies and Orphan Black both scifi shows that I've heard a lot of good things about and low and behold I found the last season of Torchwood also available.  So with much excitement I've spent the last three days binge watching it.

Warning spoilers ahead.  If you don't want me to ruin the ending for you stop reading right now.



The show somewhere along the line lost its way.  This last season strayed very very far from its original format and the quirky bits that originally drew me into it.  Two things really stood out for me and got me wondering just who the heck wrote this thing:  lots of gay sex, and an artifact that looks like a giant three story high vagina that needs the main characters' male blood sent into it to return the world to rights.  There is a subplot about a pedophile that become famous, some fat shaming and grossly misogynistic bits thrown in for good measure.  All leaving me to wonder what the hell were they thinking!?!  Did some woman hating gay guys write this?

I am a prude and don't really like butt naked hetero sex scenes never mind same sex scenes.   While I am glad that this is finally getting air time and it is becoming normal for gay characters to hold leading roles in shows while being in romantic relationships, I seriously don't need to see their very naked butts.  Please note that I say the exact same thing for straight sex scenes.  Lets leave something for the imagination please.  This is supposed to be a regular TV show and not some mild porn.  Okay, I'm almost off my soapbox.

If it were just the above, I would let things rest and just chalk it up to the writers getting some much needed air time and equal opportunity for the gay community, which I'm 100% behind as long as I don't see any behinds.  However,  and this is a big one, what the hell is up with that three plus story high vagina that is screwing up the entire world?  And why do the two main male characters of the season have to bleed profusely into it to set things right again???  I forgot to mention that rocks are constantly being pulled into it.  People with impure soles die when they are in its presence.  It is a huge life sucking vagina.  Something I read in the very distant past, mentioned that this was a man's worst nightmare, a vagina that sucks them in and mutilates or kills them.  This is the first EVER science fiction show, movie or book that I've read or seen that has had this imagery in it.  I mean they could have made it look much less vagina like, say making it round instead of a huge slit or gray instead of various shades of pink.  They could have had the main characters jump into it rather than have them bleed into it.  Rocks and debris didn't have to be constantly sucked into it.  I mean come on!!  This is just horrible!!  What on god's green earth were they thinking???  At least the pedophile killed himself in the end and was generally a despicable character through out the season.  Bill Pullman did a good job of playing him as a not quite right in the head character.  However, I want to see aliens and spaceships and weird technogadgets not pedophiles, gay sex and huge life sucking vaginas.

After watching the disaster of the last episode I can now say that I'm happy that it got canceled.  I might at some point in the distant future watch the first two seasons again since those were good.  But I'm not watching the last two ever again.  Not worth the time, even my copious amounts of time.

Monday, September 29, 2014

30 Things Meme

I did this one back when I first got sick.  I'm going to do it again now, five years later, without looking at my old post.  I'm curious how many of my answers have changed.

30 Things About My Invisible Illness You May Not Know

1. The illness I live with is: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/ME, Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, Fluroquinolone Poisoning
2. I was diagnosed with it in the year: CFS/ME & Fibro were diagnosed in 2011, Osteo around 1998
3. But I had symptoms since: Fibro I can trace back about 25 years, CFS/ME was sudden onset in 2010 and the arthritis built up over fifteen years after a fall down the stairs in 1990.
4. The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is: Not having the energy or brain power to do ANYTHING
5. Most people assume: I'm just tired
6. The hardest part about mornings are: Knowing that I only have 2-3 hours to get everything done before I run out of energy for the day.
7. My favorite medical TV show is: ER
8. A gadget I couldn’t live without is: Crockpot
9. The hardest part about nights are: Being nocturnal so most of my waking hours are during the dark.
10. Each day I take __ pills & vitamins. (No comments, please) I am supposed to take 25 pills a day, on a good day I manage 16 but most days I only get down 8-10.  I'm also using three spray supplements and an IV infusion twice a month.
11. Regarding alternative treatments I: have had some success with acupuncture, massage and chiropractic.  I've had to stop massage and acupuncture due to cost.
12. If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose: VISIBLE
13. Regarding working and career: What career?  I'm so far behind in my field at this point I doubt I could get hired back.  If I were well enough I might be able to work again, but at my age I doubt I would get anywhere career wise.  My only hope would be to go and get a PhD.
14. People would be surprised to know:  I have HUGE trouble reading books and articles.  I can only read in short spurts and even if I manage to comprehend what I read it is often forgotten shortly afterwards.
15. The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been: the lack of support from family and the loss of friends
16. Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was: manage to get through the heaps of paperwork required for disability.
17. The commercials about my illness:  There aren't any for CFS/ME.  The drugs for fibro are useless.
18. Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is: ice skating
19. It was really hard to have to give up: ice skating
20. A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is: I just do my old one, watching movies.
21. If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would: Travel
22. My illness has taught me: the true meaning of the Buddhist idea of impermanence and living in the moment
23. Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is: "Oh I get tired all the time too."
24. But I love it when people: Bring me food (this has only happened once)
25. My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is: "This too shall pass."
26. When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them:  "Ask me anything.  I will try to help."
27. Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is:  I can enjoy living the quiet life.
28. The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was:  Bring me food.
29. I’m involved with Invisible Illness Week because:  Others need to know that people are suffering and that CFS/ME is real and can strike down anyone at any time.
30. The fact that you read this list makes me feel: content.


Thursday, August 28, 2014

Sister Dearest rev.2

There is no doubt that relationships of all kinds are stretched to their limits when you become chronically ill.  Sometimes those relationships break.  

I originally wrote this post two weeks ago when it was all still very raw.  I had to save it as a draft because it was long and nasty and angry.  So here is the revised version.  While it sticks to the facts more and I don't ramble as much, I still get incredibly angry so there are some bad words in it.  Consider yourself warned.  

It has been only two weeks but it already seems a lifetime: I broke off all contact with my sister.  Things have been weird between us for about two years.  She stopped visiting.  I can't travel so that meant no contact.  We were never ones to chat via phone or email.  Mostly I would hear from her when she wanted something.  So this meant no conversations casual or otherwise.  We did visit in passing at family functions. Mostly it was the big hug at the beginning and end of the visit like we were long lost pals but the bulk of the day would be me joining conversation groups only to have them dissolve around me.  After a few attempts at having conversation with various family members, I would decide I was too tired to participate in this game and go into a quiet room to sit by myself for the remainder of the event.  

The cold shoulder from my sister reached new heights this year: I had to invite myself over to my brother's for the family Christmas get together (he never hosts Christmas so I can only imagine that my sister instigated it).  Both my brother and sister didn't visit Mum and I when we were all on Cape Cod together this spring.  Then I wasn't invited to a family dinner this summer that my sister had arranged.  

I had enough by this point and called her out on this.  I sent her a simple to the point email asking why I had been excluded.  (You have no idea how big a deal this is for me.  Standing up to my sister is like challenging Thor.  You risk bringing her wrath down upon your head.  I was proud of myself for sending the email.  It took great amounts of courage for me.  Anyway, I digress...)  I got odd lame excuses for the exclusions.  Things like it was all my brother's fault for the Christmas exclusion even though he never makes arrangements and she ALWAYS invites him to my house.  Or that it was my fault for not arranging the dinner party myself.  While this isn't stellar behavior, it is what I expected from her.  If it was only that, I might have dropped the entire thing.  However, the second half of the email took the biscuit.

The first paragraph was a bizarre attack on my husband for some slight that occurred over two years ago.  None of us can figure out what happened to prompt this.  My sister though has never gotten over her man hating days.  Going through three and a half husbands doesn't elevate her opinion of men either and I think my husband is just a convenient target.  Misandry at its finest.  

I do know hubs was horrible during the first year of my illness and I did almost leave him.  However, he has turned things around and our marriage is almost back to normal now.  It took two years but it looks like things are back on track.  My sister on the other hand seems to want war.  

Okay, horrible and weird but still not a pull the plug on the relationship offence.  This is just normal bat-shit crazy sister stuff that I've come to expect from her.

The next paragraph was the kick in the teeth though: 
"I surround myself with positive people. ...  I choose to have positive thoughts and be with positive people. People that can see the good in everything.  [sic] Not the little negative nit picking little things. ...  Bottom line [sic] I believe that you and I have never had anything in common and never will. ... I wish positive things for you but I do not choose to be around you."

I did do some heavy editing but it was necessary for clarity.  The actual paragraphs wandered all over the place: telling me how awesome my brother was for taping my mom skating; accusing me of mocking my brother; accusing my husband of making jokes at others' expense; accusing me of laughing at said jokes; she doesn't want to be in the same room with my husband; her wishing I would get well; etc, etc.

I would have thought she wrote this while drunk but it was sent at 8:30am.  The writing was all over the place hopping from topic to topic.  But, the basic gist was I'm a bad person, my husband is a bad person, and she wants nothing to do with either of us.  Sorry you are sick but fuck off.

Involved in the middle of that mess was the following question:
"If you were handed today a miracle pill that you could take, and your CFS and other ailments would just disappear - which means that you would have to go back to work tomorrow, clean the house again, and lead a "normal" life....would you take the pill?"
How bloody insulting is that!?!  I've done nothing but try to find a cure or even symptom relief.  Some of my "cures" have made things worse (see the posts on Cipro).  Luckily most cures have been ineffectual or had side effects that went away when I stopped taking them.  Some have helped as I've talked about before.  I would love nothing more than to lead a normal life again.  I HATE HATE HATE her for even asking this.  How horribly mean is this????  She is implying that I like sitting around the house not doing anything.  That I like being sick.  What the ever living fuck!?!

 I just can't write about this without getting horribly upset and angry.  How DARE she!?!  Positive thoughts my ass!

So after much hand wringing, discussions with hubs and mum and my therapist, I cut off all communication with her.  I sent her a brief email stating "There will be no further communication between us.  I will only contact you with regards to Mum's health and well being.  I have copied Mum and [brother] to make them aware of the situation."  If I engaged with any of her content, then a massive massive fight would ensure.  I wouldn't win.  It would take a huge amount of energy on my part for very little gain.  I thought long and hard about things and decided that the best course of action was to severe all contact.  Even my therapist told me that it would be the healthiest thing for me to do; the best way to take care of myself.

You know what I felt afterwards?  Relief.  I'm done with her.  I'm done with her crazy.  I'm done walking on eggshells around her scared that I'll set her off and get yelled at.  I don't have to host any more weird family gatherings where the only people that actually talk to me are my Mum and my niece.  You would think that after feeding and hosting that lot for decades they would at least talk to me.  Fuck them.  Fuck them all.  I'm done.

In an odd way I feel like this illness has been an opportunity in disguise.  I have lost friends and am now shedding family.  I have lost my job and my career.  But in return my relationships with my mother and son are better now than before.  Hubs and I are on the mend.  I can pick a new job.  I can make new friends.  I can make my life so much better than it was.  All new and shiny and one that will hopefully make me happy.  I'm looking forward to my new life.  I think it will be spectacular.