Friday, December 28, 2007

scream of consciousness

There's something wrong with my new laptop. I've been sitting here for an hour and I still don't have anything written. Did I read the ads wrong? Do I really still have to write the post myself? Is there software I can buy to change that? Because if not, I just have one thing to say.


It doesn't help that I have celebration brain. A whole week of Christmas buildup was bad enough, but yesterday was birthday day to boot. For the second time in three days I woke up to boys hurtling themselves at my prone body and screaming for presents. The fact that my room was still kind of dark when this happened only made it more traumatic. Then there was the shopping trip to redeem birthday bucks and Christmas gift cards - the trip in which every wacko in my zip code was walking the same aisles I was.

There was the Mennonite woman in cap and regulation dress complaining loudly that the store we were in didn't carry porn films. There was the twenty something man and woman who were having some kind of a fight that involved him grabbing her by the neck and dragging her toward the front of the store, before she broke free and, flipping him the bird and screaming profanity, raced away from him at top speed on her Heelie shoes. A bunch of us were watching warily, unable to tell if they were really fighting or screwing around. When they all burst into laughter we assumed they were messing with us, but it still unnerved me.

On Christmas Eve I took care of an elderly woman at work - for nine hours. That's a long time to be in an ER, and it felt twice as long to me, as she really didn't stop screaming for help the entire time she was there. She had had a sudden onset psychotic/paranoid break and was convinced we were all trying to kill her. You can only imagine how much fun I had starting an IV and putting in a catheter. She fought at me hard enough to dislodge her IV, which meant I had to give her meds to calm her down via a real shot, with a needle and everything. Twice. Dodging kicking feet and swinging fists the entire time.

It was at that point that she looked at me and damned me to an eternity in hell for everything I was doing to hurt her. Damned me to burn for "torturing an old lady" like I was. Told me I was no better than the devil for all the pain I was causing her. And those are just the things I can repeat. Let's just say she left no word unturned.

And, as strange as this sounds, I've felt slightly off balance ever since. I'm no stranger to patients calling me every name in the book and taking swings at me. I've done my time with psych patients who really couldn't in any way be held responsible for what they did. But to be condemned for eternity was a new one on me, and I didn't like it in the least.

It doesn't help that Christmas has been problematic the last few years. My grandfather died on Christmas Day a couple of years ago. My mom fell last year on Christmas Eve and busted her arm but good. I found out about it the next morning because neither she nor Stu wanted to bother me with it the night before. I've gotten to the point where this holiday can make me a little nervous. I've had a whole bunch of completely non-eventful December 25ths, but I guess a few bad apples can tinge the whole basket.

And we've had a lovely holiday across the board. But, except for a quick walk to the grocery store last night, I haven't been out of my house since I got home from work Monday night. It's been very cocoon-like and peaceful. And going out today just brought back all that unease.
The fact that it was so chaotic didn't help much. Note to self: no shopping immediately after Christmas again ever.

Well, looky there. I did manage to get something written. It's disjointed and fragmented and I'm not entirely sure what my whole point was, but it's there. We can call it a stream of consciousness post, okay?

Or we could just blame the laptop.


Altaglow said...

Have you checked? We may have inadvertently bought you a Cyrillic keyboard or something even more fairy-like.

Today's an offday for everyone I think. One major holiday past--another one coming up. This is a day to breathe easy, nap, and be quiet. I don't know if brilliance arises on days like this. What do you think?

ped crossing said...

The holidays usually bring out the crazy in people. That is why I stay home. Although we did have to go to the pet store (twice), Target and Costco, I seem to have missed the crazies. Thank goodness.

I, however, have been feeling really space-y the last few days. And I wasn't even damned. That I know of.

Hope all rights itself soon.

Kaycie said...

Going to a store in the week after Christmas is off limits in my book. If we run out of milk, bread, or something else essential, the 7-11 is as far as I go. Too many nuts.

I hope you're feeling better.

Akelamalu said...

You got a new laptop? It looks like it's working just fine to me. Glad to hear Christmas wasn't a disaster. I bet you're looking forward to the New Year celebrations now eh? Tell me you're not working!

Flowerpot said...

I know what you mean - the festive period plays havoc with the brain cells. Mine seize up completely!

laurie said...

no, not the laptop. the holiday. specifically, the post-holiday doldrums.

and i would be extremely unnerved by the experience with that woman, too. i know how it is that some people just get to you.

there's an apartment building by our lake that houses elderly and a few section 8s. one day i was walking past and i saw an old woman at the window hollering silently (because the window was closed) for help.

she was beseeching me, pleading with me, waving her arms frantically. i stopped cold and stared at her. i had no idea what to do.

then i saw a nurse behind her come up and lead her away from teh window. it was chilling.

was it nurse rotten correspondent, the good nurse?
was it nurse ratchet, the bad nurse?

i could not get that old woman out of my mind for weeks.

you deserve a day of calming down after something like that.

laurie said...

ps and where the hell is that road sign from, anywhere? is there really a place in the U.S. called hell?

Swearing Mother said...

I am feeling exactly the same. Haven't been out of the house except to attend Boxing Day party and walk to the pub yesterday.

I am beginning to feel a bit stir-crazy, may have to hit the shops tomorrow but I will resist if I can.

Glad to hear you've had some good time at home. Round here we've had our fair share of what I think our A and E Dept would call PFO's. But I've hidden the Barcardi and Vodka for now, so things should improve!

A Bishops wife said...

I am laughing out loud at the Menonite lady. You should see them sneaking around the make up department at walmart LOL.

I made the mistake of taking the kids gift cards and going to Walmart and Target, the day after Christmas.

Needless to say, I purchased NOTHING! You are right, the crazy folk were out in full force buying loads of Christmas ornaments and such! I am sorry but by time it is over I could care less about Christmas ornaments.

Shelves were empty at Target but Walmart did not even have sales yet. What was I thinking?

I am always "spacey/lethargic". It is either chemtrails or a defense mechinism. Maybe just plain old being tired and stress.

PixelPi said...

Having worked with mental patients for a long time, I can understand being upset for being damned to hell for all eternity. But the good news is, PsychoGranny is psychotic, not God, so it doesn't count.

I believe there's a Hell, Michigan. Maybe PsychoGranny was damning you to be a nurse in Hell, Michigan. That would be hell.

aims said...

How horrible to lose your Grandparent on Christmas Day...and your mother breaking her arm too?

I admire people who can deal with the sick - it takes a special person...and I can see that you definately are. I'm sure you would make my visit to the ER more like heaven...

My mother died on my birthday - and I've never celebrated another. So of course I haven't aged either...the only good thing to come out of it...

iguana banana said...

If Hell is warm, I'd take it. I'm freezing my woofers off - I wish someone could tell me why I chose to live in Minnesota. That's a whole other kind of hell.
I'm sorry that you were rattled by your last couple of days. You've got a great family around you. Take a deep breath and find a good book and a glass of wine. Things will look up soon enough.
In the mean time, we're cranking up the heat at our house, pushing the furniture to the walls and playing surf rock while we dance around in our bathing suits. It's beach day at the Bungalogan...

Kimberly said...

You're too nice to go to Hell.

Sweet Irene said...

You can have an off day too, RC and still be as entertaining and endearing as you always are, so don't you worry about that one bit.

It would bother me to be damned all to hell too, even if it was a crazy old lady. We never know who are the harbingers of true evil, do we? lol

Thanks for coming by my blog and giving me some input. I sure appreciate it very much.

Here is much peace to you and many boring days until New Year's.

The Rotten Correspondent said...

altaglow - I think brilliance avoids me like the plague.

ped crossing - It's a hard time of year. You can't totally relax and you are too tired to go all out.

kaycie - the whole world is like one big fruitcake this week. Extra nuts...

akelamalu - no, I'm not working New Year's Eve or Day. yahoo!!

flowerpot - I wouldn't mind the seizing if I just knew when it planned on stopping.

laurie - that's an upsetting experience for you. I'm extremely bothered by dementia patients, and I can't honestly pinpoint why. There are so many distressing things out there and yet this one is near the top of my list. Such a waste.

And I think there are several states with cities named Hell. I got it off google.

swearing mother - what is a PFO? I need a good tell.

a bishop's wife - the makeup department? That is funny. I almost fell over when this gal went on her little tirade. I wouldn't think there would be a huge market for Mennonite porn, but what do I know?

pixelpi - normally I don't get upset when things in that vein get said to me, but I've never actually been damned to hell before by anyone but my husband.It was really upsetting. I think a lot of it had to do with the look in her eyes when she said it - totally empty.

aims - thanks for stopping by again. How horrible that your mom died on your birthday. Is that something you ever get over? I guess the never aging thing is a small consolation, though.

iguana banana - hey you! nice to hear from you. why did I not think you were in Minnesota? I think I thought Michigan. Sorry. Stay warm if you can. I don't think I've been totally thawed in a week.

kimberly - and you are way too smart to believe that!!

The Rotten Correspondent said...

Irene - I'm always happy to be at your blog. As always, take my input with a grain of salt.

I like the idea of boring days, don't you? I like boring.

Amy said...

This is a bipolar time of year. Just ask Santa.

I had a woman damn me to hell when I was 18. I was in McDonald's, which is its own kind of hell, and I looked at her. My mistake. It did kind of rattle me for a while.

Snuggle up with something warm and alcoholic. And stay away from the malls.

Jo Beaufoix said...

RC, that couple messing around wold have unnerved me too, nevermind being damned to hell. But I don't think the devil would let you in you know. You're too lovely. Even when you're being a sarky bugger.

And I really enjoyed this post. I think it's a time when we do lots of thinking, so a scream of consciousness post is perfect. Virginia Woolf eat your heart out.