Friday, April 7, 2017

The Girl no one Wanted

I have social anxiety and this is why.
When I lived in Cedar City back in 2014, I moved into a family’s basement. It seemed to work out great at first, they had a daughter my age and we were both attending SUU. They invited me to Sunday dinner with them and even let me tag along on a walk once. It was nice. But they grew distant after a couple of months and I’m still unsure why. Maybe it was the girl’s new boyfriend that replaced my seat at Sunday dinner. I wasn’t invited anymore. They started putting reminders that rent was due on my car window instead of telling me in passing. I didn’t feel very welcome anymore.
I was sexually assaulted December 7, 2014 and drug myself home around midnight feeling completely alone. I definitely didn’t  tell them. It hadn’t happened in their home so it was none of their business.
Two weeks later when life was starting to get back to some sort of normalcy, (I wasn’t crying so much at work etc.) a dear woman to me whom I looked to as a mother figure seeing as I’ve never had one, told me she’d noticed something was off. We scheduled a time to meet and I told her what had happened. She listened and was understanding. This happened to be December 23, the day before Christmas Eve. Her family invited me to join them in pulling taffy at another family’s home and I gratefully agreed but while there I noticed all of them with their families and realized I was going to be alone on Christmas Eve. This wasn’t necessarily a problem, but I felt a bit sad. That’s when the mother of that house whom I didn’t know came up to me and grabbed my face. She tried to force me to look at her but I couldn’t and started crying. She took me outside to try to calm me down. This didn’t work so she took me into her bedroom and tried to get me to lay on her bed. After talking for a short time she understood a bit about my family, that I was sexually assaulted and I didn’t want to be alone on Christmas eve. She said I could stay with her and her family, that they had a nice guest room, I could take a warm bath, help her finish wrapping presents tomorrow. This sounded amazing.
Then she decided I couldn’t. But she didn’t talk to me about it, she called my friend back to come get me. She had gone home as she had to work early the next day. This made me feel awful. The mother told me I couldn’t stay there because there was no one to be in charge of me.
My friend came back and got me. She told me I couldn’t stay with her family because she couldn’t handle me right now. I would have never asked but she felt the need to shove that in my face as well. She finally let me go home.
I know that she called the family I lived with. I still don’t know what she told them. My dad came and got me the next day. The only one who’s truly been there for me always.
Two weeks later as I returned to get my things and move out, I discovered they had been in my basement and moved my things. The lease we had both signed said they would never go in without my permission which they had not received or even asked for. They insisted on being in the house the whole time I was getting my things and for some reason thought, the Christmas tree we were taking to our car was theirs. That I had taken their Christmas tree and put it up in my basement and decorated it. They also decided to keep $60 of the down payment, $15 for every day that I hadn’t vacated starting from the first. However this made no sense to me as rent was always due on the fifth and that‘s the day I had come back.
Life moved on. Those people are no longer a part of it. But there are others that have influenced my feelings toward my fellow men. Like when my boyfriend broke up with me because I was taking up too much of his time even though I had tried everything in my power not to. Now I can’t help but fear that this time when I text that cute boy it’s going to be the limit and he’ll get annoyed and it’ll be over. There's the boyfriend who used threats of suicide as a way of controlling me and the boyfriend who just fell off the face of the earth. He just one day stopped texting, visiting, everything. It's not knowing why that hurts the most. The fear of it happening again. 
Or the friends I’d tried to make at college, asking them if we could hang out, do something. They’d say yes, I’d text them, try to figure something out with them, but they wouldn’t and after the third or fourth time I’d give up. They were either too busy for me or were just being nice by saying yes and didn’t really want to do anything with me. 
My one friend I do have dropped a bomb a few months ago that he was planning on moving. I know what happens with that. He says he’ll stay in touch, but they don’t. I don’t blame them, I know it’s hard. But don’t try to pretend it’s even going to happen.
I wish people wouldn’t be ‘nice’ because it isn’t nice. I wish people knew how much I wish I was outgoing and a people person and in some situations I am. At work I help customers with a friendly smile and laugh and joke with my coworkers. But it’s just skin deep because I don’t have to get attached to them. They can’t really hurt me.
So I push people away even though deep down I wish that someone would fight to stay.
Why don’t they? Maybe I’m too sarcastic or my laugh is too loud or I’m annoying. Or maybe I’m just easy to forget about.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

I'm Tired

I’m tired of feeling useless. I’m tired of feeling sick. I’m tired of being tired.
When I was first (finally) diagnosed, it was a relief. I had something and the doctors actually knew about it. But they don’t know much and there’s nothing really that helps it. There is no cure for Gastroparesis or ‘lazy stomach’. It was devastating to be diagnosed with a chronic illness at 18 years old. An illness that will never go away. An unwanted companion.
My biggest fear is having children. I’ve wanted to be a mother for as long as I can remember and always pictured myself with at least three children. Now I worry I won’t even be able to have one. With so many stomach problems, how will pregnancy go? How sick will I become? Will I be able to eat enough for myself and the baby? Currently meal sizes are small. About the size of my fist is enough to keep me full. My stomach doesn’t digest food as fast as it should and I don’t get all of the nutrients that I need because of it. A surplus of vitamin supplements tries to make up for it but it’s a poor substitute.
How would I be there for my child(ren) especially on my down days when I can easily go to sleep at 8:30pm and wake up the next day at 11:00am and then need a nap by 1:00pm and again at 5:00pm. If I eat too much I feel ill and want to lay down, however I tend to wake up even sicker.
It frustrates me that I don’t know what to do for work in my future. I want to be an elementary teacher. I love children. Yet after the six years it will take me to complete school, (not being able to go full-time. Refer above) will I really be able to work as a teacher? Going in before school starts and leaving well after it’s out. I have to eat when I get hungry, I get tired suddenly and basically stop functioning. But what else is there that I could do that doesn’t require so many hours and so much schooling? I hate the prospect of being supported the rest of my life. I’m so independent and the idea terrifies me. Whether it’s my father or a husband, it just doesn’t sit well to be taken care of. How on earth could I try to date and find a husband knowing that he will have to support me? How can I think that’s fair? It isn’t.
I watch my friends and family go to school, find jobs, get married, start their families. Life goes on around me, but for me it’s standing still.
I never know how I’ll feel day to day or minute to minute. Planning things in advance is tricky. It’s awkward to cancel a plan because suddenly I have diarrhea and I don’t really feel like going out. Or there’s the other spectrum of constipation that I’ve dealt with mercilessly for over a year now. Yes, you can be constipated and have diarrhea at the same time… Sometimes I go anyway. Sometimes I’m so dead tired I’m yawning the whole time and people probably think I’m bored. I’m not, I promise! I’m so happy to be out with someone. I don’t get that much.
I can sometimes eat at 1:00am, 8:00, 12:00, a snack at 3:00 and then dinner at 5:30 with another snack before bed. Those are good days (again meals are small). Bad days I’m lucky to get two meals in without feeling violently ill. I have to eat when I get hungry and stop when I’m no longer. Not when I’m full or stuffed, just when I’m not hungry anymore. No splurging on Christmas or Thanksgiving dinner unless I want to be bedridden for the next six hours. No all-I-can-eat at those buffets.  I wish I could say my self-control were better. The problem is that I love food!
The truth is, I don’t want my illness to rule my life, yet it does and I don’t know how to stop it. I don’t feel in control. Not when car rides more than half an hour wear me out. Not when it’s usually nap time after dinner and I wake up long enough to read scriptures and go back to bed. My bed. It’s amazing how uncomfortable something can become when you spend so much time on it.
I hate the cold. Ever since I lost all of that weight when I first got sick, I can’t keep warm to save my life. Even indoor swimming pools sap what warmth my body has. I love the water. This is still hard to handle. Winter is brutal. Thank heaven for my big puffy coat.
My life feels full of unknowns and impossibilities. Just two years ago the sky was the limit and I could be anything and do anything. I still try. I might need a nap in between activities, but I go rock climbing and hiking. I love trying new things and just being with people. My illness makes for a lonely place.
It’s strange that I used to have my life all figured out. Maybe someday I will again.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Where My Demons Hide

Caution Mature Content******************************************Caution Mature Content

The hospital. The doctor’s office. Backrooms, exam rooms, being alone with doctors, asked to lay down. The sexual assault and then the many medical appointments that followed did not coexist peacefully.
Upon telling my two ‘big brother’ friends what had occurred, they insisted I go to the police. It felt very out of my control and on the second day I did. A trip to the ER followed. The rape test. I saved my clothes to give to the detectives. I remember having to change into a gown, lying still on a birthing bed, my legs spread apart as the nurse did it all over again. She had to touch me everywhere he had. Everywhere. And I had to let her. I could tell her to stop, but then the exam would be incomplete. She took DNA samples from under my fingernails, up and down my arms, my throat, lips. It took hours. I just wrapped my arms around my stomach and stared at the wall toning out the crisis counselor who was ‘there for me’. She called me a few times in the months that followed to check up on me but I always told her I was fine. I didn’t live there anymore anyway.
The next appointment I had was in January. I’d hurt my toe country swing dancing two months prior and the pain hadn’t gone. It wasn’t too bad. The doctor seemed surprised when I told him I was a theatre major because I was so quiet and reserved. He seemed to sense something was off with me and upon asking if he should stop teasing I just nodded.
I had to get an xray of course but ended up laying down on the table. It was practically the same position as the hospital...
Then the testing began. I was honestly scared. I wasn’t sure if there had somehow been a way for me to become pregnant. Was that why my stomach had become worse? I could have passed out for a bit while I was with him. He could have done so much to me in the two hours that though I remember even now so clearly, could have been mixed into a blur easily. However a baby would have shown up in a CT scan especially after two months. It was a relief.
I had to get used to laying down for doctors to do what they needed again. It didn’t used to be a problem. An ultra sound, a HIDA scan.
I was worried about the scopes and being put under anesthesia. I’ve heard the stories of doctors raping people and other such things. All went well however.
Then there was the EKG to check my heart. That took me by surprise as a male nurse had me lay down and without a thought stuck wires to my breasts and under my shirt to my bra line. I was very tense during it all, trying my hardest to relax as he instructed me.
Since the police and working with a detective I was able to sign a paper saying I didn’t have to go to court, yet I receive updates on the meetings. I never wanted to hurt him. I never wanted anything to happen to him. I fear for him, that I’ve ruined his life. It frustrates me that I don’t know where he is, what’s happening to him.
I had my first panic attack several days after the incident. I’d blocked his number of course, yet unblocked it to see if I could retrieve his texts. He’d texted me that night and I’d stopped breathing.
I still get panic attacks at night, being alone in my bed in the dark. They range from not being able to sleep because I’m remembering to curling up in a tight ball unable to breathe because I can feel it as if he’s touching me again. I feel terrible on the few nights I end up texting or calling a friend to help me through it. I’ve lost friends that way, yet I can’t blame them. There are things that trigger flashbacks. It frustrates me that my body and mind takes this so hard even now over nine months later when people have gone through so much worse and hardly bat an eye.
I’ve worked through counseling, I’m dating again, slowly my life is returning to a form of normal that I must now accept. Because this is never truly going to go away. This is my trauma that haunts me as others have their own.
I want to share this out in the open. What I’ve gone through, knowing that so many others have gone through the same and worse. Know that you’re not alone. Know that everyone gets through things differently and everyone has different reactions to things. Know that the third ‘f’ is usually forgotten: Fight, Flight and (freeze). Know that it wasn’t and is not your fault. I’m still trying to convince myself. Most importantly know that someone will love you when the time is right. Someone who will be willing to face your past with you as it portrays in the present and future. Stay strong, amazing.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Left Behind

Everything's so different from what it used to be. I've always been very independent. I went off to college on my own and lived in a family's basement by myself. I know how to cook and all that stuff. Since I moved back home however, I've become very dependent on my dad. I struggle if he's gone for even a night. I just feel so alone because he's usually all I have.
One such night recently, my dad was away and I decided to read through my journals, find out where I was this time last year. That was quite depressing. Seeing everything and everyone I had that I lost just three months later. I wanted so badly to go back and warn myself of what was coming, but I can't. It's hard feeling that I don't matter. I try on occasion to get back in touch with the friends I had, but they never respond. I haven't heard from them since January or February. I've slipped from their life and they don't intend to put me back. I even find myself wanting to push those I have now away, cut off communication before they do because it will be less painful if I do it instead of waiting for them. So many people have told me they'll always be there and I can always go to them. Whenever anyone tells me that now, my immediate thought is 'for how long?'
I feel like such a financial and time-consuming burden. I feel like no one cares. I see people sharing and aiding in little things that don't really matter on Facebook. There are fundraisers at school all year. Don't I matter? My gofundme medical support fund has stopped last month at $478. With a goal of $12,000 it just doesn't add up. At times I honestly wish I would just die. Please note at this time I am not suicidal and will never take my life. I just wish something else would do it for me...I don't have any desire to go to Hell, however I sometimes can't help feeling I'm already there. I've been there for a long time and how truly lonely it is. A place where people forget you even exist. Where you're not surrounded by people at work or school, where you are truly and nearly constantly alone. Nine months now. People say they understand how I feel, that they're lonely too. But they're not and they don't.
People tell me I've been like this for a while, done. Given up. But I'm still here, I'm still going. That doesn't mean anything. Only that my torture continues. It doesn't mean I'm overcoming or enduring. I'm just existing and only barely. I've long lost wishes and hopes for better days because nothing will ever be the same and perhaps I'm doomed to remain in this little town with no one but my dad and doctors, a tube sticking out of my arm and medications that make me sick. No support, no help, no love. Just this. 
I think it's driving me crazy because I am getting better. Sometimes I have more energy, I'm not feeling as sick as I used to. Yet there's still nothing to do and no one to be with. A wild animal shouldn't be confined to a cage. I want to live again.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

In with the New

So I have lots of different things that have been going on since my last post. Let's start with that DGL stuff. My doctor, being a naturopath, has made it our goal that I won't be dependent on harsh drugs and medicines for the rest of my life. I've been sort of living in denial since I was diagnosed and found out that there is no cure and I will have this forever. I'm finally starting to face that, it's been hard.
Anyway my dad found a way for me to be able to crush the tablets and put them in capsules so that I don't have to taste them :) So the DGL along with Ginger Root and Slippery Elm have really helped minimize my nausea along with being natural remedies. I'm still taking the multivitamins and biotin as well. Nothing harsh or possibly damaging to my body.
 Next I finally got my PICC line installed! It was slightly painful but doesn't hurt any longer. A thin tube entered in my forearm and went through a vein into my chest. It's a major vein in my chest connecting to my heart so we have to be careful when we change the dressings and ensure no air gets into the IV drip, however I no longer have to get poked by needles. The dressing needs to be changed once a week or if it gets wet and we use a saline flush every day. This will also be super beneficial if we can find a way to get my IVs done closer to home.
We also were shocked and surprised to discover that an anonymous individual donated $700 to my doctor's office that is currently being held for credit toward my IVs. This is such a blessing for us and will last about three weeks (2 IVs a week). Whomever you are, if you ever read this, thank you.

Friday, August 21, 2015

My Venting Machine

This is a vent, not a pity train, not an attention seeker, you've been warned.

I moved back home December 24th, 2014. A result of sequences that came after sexual assault. A time in my life where there was no one there for me. When I finally for the first time asked for help and was turned away. I'd never before felt so alone, unloved. I was a burden that no one wanted to deal with, forced upon my father because he had to love me. With no mother for support in a time when I really needed it I felt very lost.
 My amazing daddy has been there through it all, the counseling and recovery from the trauma and now the new battle I'm fighting with my illness that has recently been diagnosed. He loves me unconditionally and tries his very hardest to make sure I have all I need and even a bit of what I want. The only person in the world I had during my darkest hour and the only person in the world I know will always be there.

Here, let me help you gain some perspective. Since December 24th, until today, August 21st, I have spent the majority of my time isolated in my house, sleeping, just laying in bed, watching tv... I have on seldom occasion been able to spend a few hours with a friend or even go on a date, however this usually consists of several hours of travel on my part which has grown harder with each passing month. I get tired so easily and it has become dangerous. This also makes me feel trapped as I can't just go for long drives or escape.
I live in a small town where the biggest store is Walmart, where everyone, upon graduating high school, makes a quick getaway to college. Hey, I did too.
I'm lonely often. I can't help but feel forgotten. I sort of just vanished from everyone's life and they all seem to accept and be ok with it. Yes, I have people I text, I use facebook, I even have the dreaded Tinder (kind of pointless as there's no one within a 50 mile radius of me). But these cannot and will never replace a good afternoon spent talking and laughing with someone. Social media is anything but social. I get depressed seeing only my dad and doctor for weeks, especially when I can't make church.
I've been reminded so often of how weak I've become, what I can no longer do. Things I took for granted. Going to school, having a job... How I can no longer pick up a bucket of cat litter when I used to be able to carry two.
When I went to Lagoon for the second time in my life, remembering the roller coasters with excitement and anticipation, I soon discovered any and every ride made me ill. The chair lift even.
My fascination has always been water, swimming in lakes, rivers, and pools. But now it's so cold to my body that I'm confined to the hot tub. Going for a long walk no matter how gentle and slow paced can leave me tired and ill for a couple of days.
Then there's always the catch when I get to eat out. Chuck-a-rama or Costa Vida or Golden Corral... Buffets or places where I love the food. Where I want to eat as much as possible. Where I become very violently ill. But how can I justify paying $15 for an all-you-can-eat buffet and only eating five bites? When I want to try everything and then go back for seconds on the things I liked and finally have dessert. Life has lost its joy.
I feel ugly. My face is so riddled with acne, sores and scars. It's a constant battle of if I should focus on ridding my face of the acne or healing the sores? I can't do both at once. Putting healing creams on creates more acne, getting rid of acne creates more sores. The never ending cycle.
So I cake on the make-up and get all fancy. I take pictures of myself and have fun modeling.
Only then do I feel beautiful when I've posted them on Facebook and people like and comment on them. 
I try to stay positive and keep going, sometimes becoming discouraged when I realize I've been receiving IV therapy for a couple of months now with little improvement. How the three hour round trips twice a week really wear me out and the fluids make me nauseous.
This is me. A 19 year old who has never had a friend for more than two years, got asked on her first date only after she'd lost weight, has never had a mother... A girl who is easily forgotten.

Sunday, August 9, 2015


I've started a GoFundMe page so that people can help with funding for my medical needs right now.
My goal is to get around $12,000. The IV therapy is expensive, at least $110 per IV (twice a week) and consists of around 6 hours of road time each week as well. Currently my dad and I only have enough funds to continue the IV therapy through the end of August, however I need several more months in order to get back to full health and strength.
It would be beneficial to get a midline in my arm which is around $400 not counting the dressings and saline flushes etc. My doctor also recommends counseling. The catch is that none of this is covered by insurance. I'm very grateful to those who have already helped.
For more information you can look at my previous posts and also check out my GoFundMe page. Anything helps, thanks :)