>Nervous

>I’m going out to lunch with my mentor from church tomorrow. She’s absolutely fabulous, but I’m really concerned about keeping up my end of the conversation. My mom always…. searching for a word other than complains…. ah, points out that it’s almost impossible to have a real conversation with me because I don’t hold up my end. Sometimes I’ll willingly talk for a few exchanges, and then I just run out of words and completely quit. I can talk about Elsie, but I always say the same things and I’m guessing my mentor is starting to notice. Also, I hate to talk and eat. I like to eat my food and only eat my food. It’s too hard to focus on talking when I’m trying to eat, and I gave up many years ago. So when I eat, I do it in silence. Tomorrow, I will have to manage both talking and eating. And I’ll have to make sure I use my manners for both.

Why did I ever agree to this lunch thing? So much to go wrong!

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>It’s official!

>Warning: This is not an organized post.

1. I got out of bed a week or ten days ago, and out of the blue I had severe pain in the ball of my right foot. After that week or ten days of ice and ibuprofen, to no avail, I got up yesterday morning and couldn’t put weight on the foot. I got someone to take my shift at work last night, canceled my dentist appointment because I couldn’t drive to get there, and made a doctor appointment which Mom drove to. The verdict: plantar fasciitis. And darn, it hurts. They prescribed NSAID patches for the bottom of my foot, and gave me a free sample to use, except now insurance is being a jerk about covering it and I might be stuck taking oral ibuprofen in high doses, which upsets my stomach. So, we’re battling the insurance.

2. I was on the phone with the psychiatrist’s office yesterday (why in a moment), and the woman said, “…because you’re losing your insurance at the end of the month.” What! So Mom tried to call the state office and figure out what was up, but they refused to speak to her. She has my power of attorney, and yet they wouldn’t speak to her. So, we got up early this morning and got on speaker phone and I told them they could talk to her, and they did. Turns out that when they canceled my cash assistance on May 3rd, they also canceled my Medicaid. The Medicaid was supposed to be reinstated May 4th, only… they forgot. Mom says, “Clerical snafoo.” I say, seriously people? You forgot? So anyway, that’s straightened out.

3. My new house won’t be ready this month. Boo. I got in trouble with Bob the other night for breaking the rubber gasket on the blender (we had another one….), and I think he and I have both had it up to here with each other. I try so hard to be good, and he tries so hard to be nice, and neither one works out very well. It’s kind of against my nature to be good, and I think it’s against his to be nice, so… hmph.

4. I’m getting a full battery of neuropsych tests done next week. It takes four hours, and they start at 8:30 in the morning. Have I ever mentioned that I sleep from approximately 11pm until noon everyday? This shall be interesting.

5. Elsie is service catting on the back of the couch, as she often does. Which brings me to the title of my post. She’s official! Her papers came in the mail. She’s registered through SARA (Service Animal Registry of America) and she has a big paper, a medium-sized paper, and a wallet-sized card, all with her picture and whatnot on it. She’s official!

>An answer to prayer

>As grateful as I’ve been to have a case manager, and as nice and Jeff is, he complicates my life more than he simplifies it. If my doctor and therapist say up, he says down. His ideas of what is good for me are just completely different from my doctors’, and it confuses me.

The other issue is that he thinks I’m higher functioning than I am. He talks to me and treats me like I’m an adult, then says I’m feigning it when I can’t understand him. He talks too fast and I can’t follow. He uses too many words. I don’t for a second think that I’m unintelligent, but I do have auditory processing issues that require people not to go too fast or use a lot of words all at once, if I’m to understand. He thinks that because my IQ is high, I should be able to do things like remember to eat and make phone calls. He doesn’t understand that IQ does not equate to functional abilities. This is one reason why I’m getting testing done to prove that I’m not really 22 years old, functionally (the other reason being to prove to the SSI judge).

Anyway, I didn’t want to ditch Jeff because sometimes I need him and I definitely need services through him, like an aide to come to my new house to help me. But he was complicating things. Good ol’ Chloe (Chloe, my good friend in Canada who has Asperger’s and a service dog and we have a lot in common!) prayed about it, and guess what?

Jeff is switching jobs at the end of the month, and I get a new case manager! This time, I get a girl, since I want a girl and Jeff thinks he can swing it. Maybe this one will work out better.

I’m hoping!

>Why I’m happy today

>My new Mickey shirt that Mom got me at the mall today “just because”

Elsie’s new skill of touching on command

My Minnie Mouse antenna topper (yes, we went to the Disney store)

Church with my mom

Swimming in the lake, which I can’t wait for this summer

>Fender Bender

>So, I got in a little fender bender today. More like a fender tapper, because my fender didn’t get screwed up at all and neither did the other guy’s, but still, our cars made contact. On its own this wouldn’t be a big deal, except that such situations seem to crop up on me with much greater frequency than they do most people. I can’t remember the last time I drove without getting beeped at (I hate ending sentences with a preposition, so I’m inserting this little aside to solve that problem). Before you start cursing all the jerks out there, like my mom did, let me say that I’m the queen of cutting people off when I change lanes. By the time I turn and look, someone’s beeping at me. Without fail. I get beeped at a lot when I’m in unfamiliar areas, and usually I don’t know why. Oh, and did I mention that I don’t always notice when the guy in front of me is stopping or about to turn, and I frequently have to slam on my breaks?

Considering I’ve been driving for, what, 6 years, and 5 of them on my own, I should be well past this stage. I can see if I were a new driver, but I’m not that new.

This all comes to down to one big thing: I shouldn’t be driving. I can’t manage to simultaneously pay attention to enough different things such as is required in driving. It makes sense, really. I definitely struggle with attention issues (I’m great at asking you a question, then responding with, “Wait, I forgot to listen to the answer.”). I struggle with visual and auditory perception. Why wouldn’t I struggle with driving.

But I have to drive. As much as work makes me panic, without it I can’t move out. No driving means no work means no moving out, and that’s bad. I need to move out. Also, the research study that I’m in for the next year and a half requires driving to get there. Mom says that if I give up driving, my world will become very, very small. She’s not making this decision any easier. She also acts like it’s my fault I’m such a bad driver, and I know it’s not. I’m just naturally terrible at it for the above-mentioned reasons.

Advice appreciated. I certainly don’t know what to do.

>All scared, all the time

>I can’t put into words how scared I am of what feels like everything. Especially work. Oh, work. Why am I so scared of it? I do the same things every time I go, so it should be familiar and comfortable. But I might do the outside cats and rabbits, OR I might do a cat condo. And after that, I might do the back cats, OR I might do the medical cats. There’s no way of knowing until I get there and someone decides to tell me, but not knowing makes me horribly scared of work.

And I’m scared to move out. What if I can’t take care of myself? What if someone tries to break in? What if Elsie gets sick? What if I get sick? What about money? I don’t make very much, and I don’t work full time, so I really don’t have very much money. What if I can’t survive on what I make?

My therapist says that my life is changing, and that I’m going to be anxious, that it’s to be expected. I don’t think I should be as anxious as I am. I’m back to feeling like I got startled by something all the time. It’s not a good feeling at all.

It’s coming out in weird ways. First, there’s the repeating. Then there’s this odd obsession with death. Not a suicidal kind of thing, but I wonder a lot about when and where and how I’ll die. I worry a lot about my mom and Elsie dying, too. My brain is stuck on all dying, all the time. It’s weird and I don’t like it, but every time I’m not actively engaged, I find myself thinking about death.

This post kind of sucks. I realize that. I wasn’t going to write, but it’s been a few days so it’s time. My creative bone is completely depleted, so I just write about what’s going on and it’s all boring.

Now back to your regularly scheduled program: scared.