The Difference a Year Makes

Life is Like Underwear

A year ago I felt so depressed, desperate and hopeless that I wanted to kill myself. I planned to shoot myself, but couldn’t do it when I had the gun.

Now I have a good job that I like, an ok home (though I’ll probably move again in a couple months), a car that runs ok and is insured. My life is starting to come back together and get good again. It was not an easy road from there to here, but it was do-able with help from a few people along the way. (I’d like to write that having Hope made a difference, but I know that when one is in the middle depression, Hope can seem like the most impossible thing to ever have.)

Now though, my dog and I are both alive, safe, and relatively healthy and happy. If I had given up and killed myself, both of us would be dead now.

Sometimes I still have feelings like I wish I could die or wish I had been able to shoot myself back then, but these are just passing feelings, not serious concerns.

Depression can be hard to deal with, but with prayer and effort, it doesn’t have to be a death sentence or a permanent state of being. Life can indeed get better if you keep trying to make it better. Don’t give up on yourself or on Life.


I Like My New Job

Lab Tech 1

Actually, I’m mostly learning how to weigh out almond products, then test them for bacteria, yeast and mold. I like my new work. I like my company, my coworkers, my supervisor, the exercise I’m getting by climbing stairs and walking through the building, the smell of fresh almond butter and seasoned almonds, and re-learning how to weigh-out stuff and use a pipette.

After I lost my last job, I didn’t get right back into the game. I thought I had enough money in savings that I could take a break to figure out what I really wanted to do with my life. Unfortunately, sometimes Life decides for us.

I started looking after my Mom instead of looking for a real job, then that became my job, because no one else would help me with her problems as her Alzheimer’s got worse. As my stress and financial situation got worse, so did my depression and my low self-esteem. I felt like no one would hire me or help me. When I dreamt of working in a lab, I dreamt of being late and not being able to do the job. I had these kinds of dreams so often, that I began to view this possibility as a kind of reality. – Our subconscious believes what we tell it, whether these things are objectively true or not.

It wasn’t until I redid my resume last year and had someone I didn’t know view it objectively that I realized I actually do have marketable skills and experience.

In my most recent part-time job, I found myself similarly deflating my skills and value. My supervisor told me I was doing a great job, but I kept saying, “So, I’m doing ok.” – To be honest, I did a great job on a few days and a passible job on other days, but on the whole I did ok in a job that I’d never done before. – Now, going back to the kind of work I have a college degree for and years of experience doing, I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised that I’m doing ok.

I think somehow my Mom is partly responsible for me deflating my skills and value. Most of the things I enjoyed doing and was good at doing, she didn’t care about or devalued in some way. She liked telling other people I was smart, but I think that was because she felt my intelligence reflected back on her.

Anyway, I had a good day today, I like my new job, and I’m making a decent income again. Yay for me! I even feel happy today.

A Way to Go Yet


Sometime last week I was sitting in my car in the parking lot of the Foods Co, grocery store when an elderly woman came up to my window and tapped on it. I thought, oh no, she’s going to ask me for money, but she didn’t. She asked if I was crying and said she was worried about me. I hadn’t been, though I had been feeling down. I told her I was fine. I was just listening to the radio (a story on NPR).

It had been raining that day, but not as fiercely as the weekend before. She asked me then, “You still have a ways to go yet, don’t you?” That was exactly how I was feeling. I got the job, but I was still struggling and feeling down. I was starting to wonder if I’d ever be able to feel safe and happy again. “I’m still going to work tonight”, I told her. “Be careful”, she said. “I will,” I answered. ” You’re sweet. Thank you,” I also said.

I resolved to leave a little early for work, just to be on the safe side.  I think her message to me meant more than just be careful driving on the wet roads though. Somehow she let me know that I was headed in the right directed, even though I’d still be on this journey for a little while longer.


I got the job!


Two weeks ago actually, I was finally told that I got this job. I’ve been trying to it get since January 6th. I didn’t post about getting it earlier, because I’ve been working & fighting off a cold. It starts Tues. Feb. 28. * Happy dance. *

This hasn’t eliminated my worries, anxiety or depression, but at least I don’t feel hopeless or suicidal. I feel like I’m climbing out of a pit of bad luck & unhappiness, but I’m not completely safe yet. Having a secure income is so immensely important for feeling safe & like I have some control over my life again.

In the meantime, I have 2 more days left at my minimum-wage phone bank job. I’ve grown to kind of like working there, but not enough that I’d want to keep working there if I didn’t have to do it. It’s still not the kind of job that many people would take on full-time if they’re not desperate to be able to pay the bills.

In the last 2 weeks, my current landlady failed to get the heater fixed in our house when the pilot light went out. The cold in my room then caused me to get a cold, which now seems to be resolving. I bought a small space heater, but not until after I was already sick. Then I couldn’t sell plasma, so lost the opportunity to make an extra $125 or more before the end of this month. Eventually I called the heater repair company and had them come out to fix the heater. They came the day after our landlady came back from the Bay Area, so she had to pay for them to turn the heater back on. My other roommate & I are planning to deduct the cost of the space heaters we bought from our rent on March 1st. We don’t plan to stay here through the summer if we can help it, because the house is going to be too hot & this landlady is too irresponsible & uneven in how she wants to charge us for rent.

I suppose this post should be all happy, excited & thankful, but really, I won’t feel like I can relax & be happy until I’m sure I’m going to be able to keep my new job. Life has just been too unfair & hard for me the last 10 years, for me to just relax & be happy. I am grateful, but I also want to be cautious.

A Miracle This Morning


I had an interview yesterday morning for a lab tech position. I didn’t feel like the interview went that well and was feeling down afterward. This feeling down even affected my job performance last night at the call center for environmental issues.

Last night after work and again this morning, I was still busy looking for jobs online. Then just now, I got a call offering me the job I wanted most.

I’m so happy and excited. This is a life-saver for me. I was seriously not sure if I’d have enough money to pay my rent for February. I’ll be getting about $ 200 from my current part-time minimum wage job just in time, then this one will get me through everything moving forward. – Thank-you to the Universe for all the help!

I have formal job offer paperwork to sign and mail back today. Then a standard pre-employment drug screen, which I’ll pass because I haven’t had even 10 mg of THC since September. There’s also a standard background check, which I’ll also pass. Then after that it’s just all the anxiety and angst of learning the ropes of fitting into a new job. I don’t expect to feel secure until I get through the 90 day trail period. This looks like it’s going to be a great job though. It pays $ 22/hour and has good hours and benefits.


My Job Search & Money Spells


I’ve applied online to about 20 or more jobs in the last 4 days. I’m frantically looking for a job before I run out of money for my rent & everything else. I had an unexpected car repair bill of $700. My landlady also refuses to credit me for the money I paid for my ex-roommate’s rent before she flaked. So I’ve been scared, but definitely trying to be positive & proactive. I even applied for a fast food job today, because that’s how desperate I am for money.

After doing the groundwork of sending out resumes, I next need to work on the magical side of things. I need a new green candle, which will cost a dollar or 2 from a discount store. I can buy money-draw herbs with my EBT/ CalFresh benefits, so I don’t have to use cash. I already have dried basil & cinnamon, but I can gather some others to freshen up the mojo bag I started months ago. I’d like to get a pretty green bottle or jar too. If spell work were all I was doing, it wouldn’t be enough, but used in addition to a serious mundane job search, it should help.



Still Here


Built in 1938, the Tower Theater lent it’s name to world famous Tower Records, which started in it’s lobby. Tower Records is gone now, but the theater is still here,  running mainstream and indie films.

I’m at the Starbucks across the street today, using their Wi-Fi. It’s cozy and quieter than the library near my new home. I also like being able to sip hot tea while I blog.

I’ve been thinking of the differences in how I felt at the last house vs. this current one. I was more traumatized when I got into the last one. I was recently homeless, had recently lost almost everything I had, and the motel I’d been staying in had been a bit rough, with cockroaches & homeless people wandering around at night. That house was a haven from all that, but it wasn’t peaceful. We had central air-conditioning & heat, a fenced yard, Wi-Fi, some TV on Roku, a nice kitchen, a wash machine but no dryer, all for about $ 420/ month. That was a great deal. Despite being in the “boondocks” of North Highlands, I would’ve stayed there if my other 2 roommates hadn’t created problems.

I was often dealing with their drama, then feeling trapped in my room while Rob’s psychosis raged. It was hard to try to put my life back together in the midst of that, but I updated my info for DMV & MediCal, got meds for my dog, went to dentist appointments, got antibiotics for my tooth infection, got food and water for the household, kept the yard watered, and did several mystery shopper jobs to boost my confidence in being able to work again. I also updated my resume, but didn’t do that until right at the end of my time there.

Robert was most of the problem there. He could seem almost normal sometimes, but that didn’t make up for the times Janae & I felt scared of him and hid in our rooms. I was glad I had her, but she ended up being another part of the problem. Several psychics told her to trust me, but she apparently finds it hard to trust anyone. When she withheld rent from our landlord because he wasn’t working fast enough to get Rob removed, she said her decision wouldn’t hurt me, but it did. Our landlord decided to kick all 3 of us out, even though he admitted I hadn’t done anything wrong.

It took about 2 months for that house to feel like a home to me – one with mentally messed-up roommates, but still a home. We shared some meals together, watched TV together, shared household chores, walked our dogs, and watched our pets play together.

I’ve only been 2 weeks in this current house, Most or that time alone or with the landlady, the last 4 days with this new roommate. We haven’t had time to bond, but at least these two aren’t mentally unstable drug-addicts. I have less money left from my savings and just as many worries as before, but I also feel more normal mentally and more confident most of the time. Not having Wi-Fi at the house is a problem, especially since I’m paying more in rent now than I was before, but I’m managing for the most part. The only TV shows I watch are from the few channels I get on an old TV that doesn’t have a remote control. The house is much quieter and peaceful though, so it’s easy to get a good night’s sleep, and I never feel like I might need to call the police while I hide locked in my room.

One of my reasons for leaving the house yesterday and today, is to give the other roommate some time alone with her boyfriend. We all need our space, and I respect that. She’s just got a part-time job, so she’ll be away part of the time during the week. I’m still looking, but I can do my online search at the library as much as possible.

The spat between Kaylee and the other roommate’s dog, has created a small disturbance in our peace. The other roommate is afraid to leave them alone together inside the house now. I’m sure they’ll get more comfortable though, and in the meantime, Kaylee can stay in the garage when necessary to calm the other roommate’s reservations.