[Comic + Journal] Unicorn 3/100

This is a bit of a cathartic, explanatory post in a way. If this blog were a uni class, I would have failed attendance months back. In my defence, I’m still alive and kicking and that has to count for something, right?

To explain, I made an executive decision a few months back to take a step away from the blog. I kept stressing about posts, content, comics and everything else while the rest of my life was utter chaos and I realised that I had lost the original idea of this blog in the process – it was a place for me to relax, share my mind when I wanted to share it and it was the freedom of that which made me share my thoughts and art and everything else so often.

I had to take things back to that point. Suffice to say that things on my end are still a complete and absolute mess, but they’re getting better. I should have an actual office built by the end of this weekend so the business can start making money again and I have a ‘mental health’ space. I’m still making little bits of progress on my jewellery skills and life is very slowly moving in the right direction. I have to be happy with that. Yell and scream at an elephant as much as you want, but he’s still going to do everything in his own time. By the time you find something big and scary enough to make him move faster, you’ve already expended more energy than he has and have therefore lost the game.

So, to keep thing simple and in the spirit of this comic entry, things WILL get better. In the mean time, I’ll get my wizard on and post only precisely when I intend to, and not a moment before. And hopefully before long, you’ll see a lot more of me.

The below drawing is my number 3 entry to my ‘100 unicorns project’ which is a little pet idea that aims to bring a little more fantasy to the world around us. This was sketched out at 4am when I couldn’t sleep. It’ll eventually be finished in the same style.

14248851_10155260607157942_1483734199_n

It’s a little messy since it’s literally pen over pencil markings at this point, but use your imagination.

Horsey, horsey, burning bright,

who the hell set you alight?

❤ Abi

 

Advertisements

[Journal] All flare and no play make Abi something something…

I’ve had an interesting month. Filled with both ups and downs, some more workable than others. Most notably, the reason I’ve been fairly absent is that I’m now on week 3 of the flare from hell. You know how every now and again you get a flare that blows all the others out of the water and leaves you standing there naked, wondering how you ended up in the middle of an arms testing facility? Yeah, one of those.

Moving in with my mother has come with it’s own stresses – we’re now living in a confined space, an entirely new set of boundaries needs to be established (or, more importantly, adhered to) with my mother and my privacy, I have very little space for work – especially important given that it’s not only how I earn money, but also how I destress! – and a whole kettle of conflict issues when the aforementioned points are brought to a head. What this means for  me is that, given how my body reacts to stress, I’ve been a hot mess for the last few months of living here.

It all started with my body going “you know what we haven’t done in a while? Bled like we’re dying out your reproductive organs”, and so it did. Despite all chemical reasoning not to (contraception for period control is THE best invention of the modern world, hands down, when it works), my uterus went flying full-speed into the glass door, and then spewed a torrent of filthy language that would make German grandmother blush when it realised that I was trying to ignore it.

I thought “fair enough, we can deal with this” and despite me being roughly as amicable as a herniated mako shark’s asshole, we got through it. But the problem was, my fatigue didn’t go away. It just got worse and worse and worse.

Queue now where I’m sleeping for roughly 14 hours a day just to avoid heart palpitations from exhaustion, I’m in constant above-average pain and my mental health is beginning to suffer from it all and you can kind of understand why my blogging has been non-existent despite intentions to keep this updated more regularly. I’m in the process of damage control and I’m hoping that every day that passes is one day closer to when this god-forsaken flare decides to give up and go home, but until then, I’m almost entirely bedridden aside from one low-impact activity a day – today’s was going to my GP.

In regards to that side of things, I’m doing well. I finally have a GP who has taken my issues seriously, isn’t treating me like a drug seeker (a moment’s pause in thanks for whatever god helped with this one) and is actually proactive in the management of my condition. To make things a little more rough, my specialist recommended that we wean me off my anti-anxiety in favour of another antidepressant I’m on for the Fibro and CFS, so that certainly hasn’t been helping my moods at all, but the plus side is that the meds they’ve put me on – Pristiq – have helped my moods like nobody’s business when I first went on them. Today we’ve brought me up from the trial dose to the full standard dose, which should do me absolute wonders and stop me being such a heinous cunt. The only thing I need to keep an eye on is that magical surprise lactation issue one boob seems to favour for this particular class of meds, but if my choice is offering people one squirt or two with their coffee and having amazing moods, or hating everything and everyone and having normal chesticles, I know what I’m going to pick. Besides, there’s probably good money in those sorts of pictures 😉

The downside of the doctor’s visit is that it’s confirmed I need to get my weight under control. At the beginning of this year, I was 110kgs. It’s not amazing. I’ve gotten it down to 105 with roughly two months serious work, but I was told that, while I’m not pre-diabetic, if I don’t shed the weight and get down to a manageable size, I’m going to be looking at diabetes in the future. It’s entirely understandable, but it honestly hit me like a bit of a brick to the back of the head, and I couldn’t understand why it was so upsetting beyond the fact that this should be a concern of mine, and then it dawned on me – when you’re chronically sick, you eventually get used to a certain run of fuckery with your body. Things are wrong, but you know what those things are, and they kind of become the neighbours you love to hate. You deal with them every day, but at least you know where you stand with them. When you add something new like this to the mix, it opens the entire cycle of grief all over again because it simply feels nothing short of betrayal from your body.

All of a sudden, your patched together little world is showing signs of the threads breaking, and you’re not certain how you’re going to sew it together again. It’s one of those things where, at least in my case, I had accepted that I had my conditions and there was a certain security in knowing that my conditions were more or less the way they were going to be, with some minor deviations on a broad scale. But this is another issue left of wing. I suppose it’s a bit of a fire under my arse if nothing else. I was already working towards weight loss and finding the old ‘me’, but this has gone to show that in order to keep my body functioning at what MY level of health  is, I need to actually work for it. It also really makes me question the whole ‘fat acceptance movement’ thing. I’m a big girl. I’m not going to deny that, but I’m not morbidly obese. Even when I was 65kgs, I still had broader shoulders and larger biceps than my boyfriend. I don’t fit standard women’s size shirts in the shoulder, and when it came to corset fitting, my ribcage was larger than average. But what this doesn’t change is that I am fat for my body type and that’s where my issues are rising. My body is not happy being this big, and so I’m working on fixing this. However, when I see girls almost twice my size promoting their size as being ‘healthy’, I do wonder how that works for them. Is their body simply coping better with their size? Are they simply in denial about the risks to their liver and pancreas with carrying that much weight? Body positivity is a wonderful thing, and I’m slowly learning how to love my broken, bunky little body, but I don’t think I could ever love the idea of putting myself at risk of disease. I don’t know. I feel like this is a kettle of fish probably best brought up in another blog post.

There have been plus sides to all the shenanigans, though. I’ve got the business back up and running. I made two sales in the last fortnight that has given the the “you can do the thing!” feeling again, and I’ve signed up for what I hope is the first of many courses ranging from silversmithing through to enameling, engraving, stone setting and all sorts that should add to my skills nicely. I am a little stressed about the fact that I have to take ‘stationary hobby business’ through to ‘making $180 a week’ in a matter of 3 months, especially when I don’t have a dedicated work space and, for a good portion of it, my desk has been a sheet of MDF across the bed. I’m presently in talks with the mother about getting a caravan or a demountable for the backyard that I can effectively make my office, but it feels a little like pulling teeth right now.

I also do have some kind of secret good news to share, and I figure this is the best note to end my blog on 🙂 Long story short, once this flare is over, I’ll be taking part in a weekly video presentation for spoonies, by spoonies. Covering everything from hobbies and relationships through to dealing with hospitals, mental health and more. I’m a little limited right now given my health and how long it’s taken me to write this blog post (brain-hands relationship has gone on holiday!), but it will be exciting to be involved in a project like this.

I’m going to leave this here and go and get some sleep.

❤ Abi

 

 

 

 

[Journal] Chronic Illness and the feeling of being left behind

So often we’re forced to use words like “I can’t” or “not today” when talking to people about social invitations or events outside our own house. Tonight is one such time for me, as manthing and I had planned to go into the city together to meet up with some friends. I was trying to be cautiously optimistic about it all, but as the day progressed, I realised that going out tonight wasn’t an option. Rather than keep him home through no fault of his own, Manthing decided to go without me.

I feel pretty awful – not just physically, but emotionally. I feel like I’ve been left behind and let down and forgotten about. Not by him, though. I feel like my own body has decided that I’m not allowed to go out, have fun and have a normal social life, and there are very few things harder than trying to battle against yourself. You can’t just hop up and jump into a new body when this one isn’t working properly, and it’s incredibly easy to take that feeling of being abandoned and turn that into self-pity, and eventually into depression.

So what do you do? You’re stuck at home, everyone else is out having a fantastic time, and all you have is pain and Netflix to keep you company. I’m struggling tonight to not fall into the pity party pit- and it can be bloody hard – but here’s some thing that might make it a little easier:

  1. Look after yourself.
    In the immortal words of Donna from Parks and Rec, “Treat ‘yo self” . Do something good for you. If that means eating a block of chocolate while in your pajamas, watching reruns of your favourite show, do it. This is about you making you feel good.

    But you know what? Sometimes you just can’t get past feeling shitty and miserable, and that’s okay. You do NOT have to be Superman or Wonderwoman. I give you complete and total permission to cry about how unfair it is, how much it all fucking sucks and how much you hate your body. Because we all have those moments, and sometimes we need an emotional release from feeling cooped up as much as we do a physical one. Hug that pillow, scream into that blanket or (snerk!) write that blog post! Let the world know you’re unhappy and that you’re over it, and make sure you give yourself a hug afterwards. You are loved.

  1. Talk to someone.
    If you’re stuck at home, there’s nothing more alienating than sitting in a quiet room by yourself. The next best thing thanks to the internet is to talk to people online. Go bug someone on Skype, prod a friend on Facebook or talk to a mate on KIK. If you’re after new friends, go and find a chat room that matches your interest, hit up the roleplaying boards on Gaia Online, or hell, go and check out some of the topics at r/CasualConversation .

    The worst thing you can do is to isolate yourself. At the very least, you’ll be catching up with someone you know. At best, you make a new friend.Sometimes it can be a little hard to talk to people when you’re in a crappy mood, but try and persevere. The best part of being online is that you can be entirely anonymous – if you don’t feel like sharing your present situation, you don’t have to. This may not be helpful for everyone, but I know it’s helped me on a few nights where I’d much rather just say I’m fine, than explaining how crap I feel.

  2. Plan for the future.
    This one is hard, even for me. You have to remember that, just because you can’t go out this time, it doesn’t mean “never”. Even though it feels pretty damn close, you’re disheartened and miserable, there’s always tomorrow. And if tomorrow is still shit, there’s next week. If next week is crap, the week after. Rinse repeat. It’s so very easy to go “I give up”, throw your hands up and become an angry pain sausage and sit in the corner, but that won’t fix the situation. What you’ll eventually find is that your mood right now is shit, and rightly so, but it will pass. You may wake up tomorrow feeling a little better for a sleep, and want to try and catch up with that friend or see that movie. You also may not, but that’s where we try again on the next tomorrow.

    Being a chronic kitty often means we feel left out and DO get left out of social events because we simply can’t keep up with others, or because it’s not an accessible thing, or because we simply fall out of social groups because we don’t have the energy for gossip. It can hurt, but it’s important that we do things within our means, too, and this means planning that lunch date, or going to see that movie or going over a friends, but do it within your capacity. Only you know what you are capable of, and you are awesome.

I don’t know if I feel better by writing this right now, but I know I’ll feel better tomorrow. I’m going to spend tonight playing some video games and watching a series and, if I feel particularly sassy, I’m going to get some ice cream. But most importantly, I’m going to give myself the time I need to feel better and I’m going to look after my body while doing it. As crap as I feel now, I know tomorrow would have been ten times worse than today if I had pushed myself to go out tonight. At least this way I know I’m taking the time to treat my body right, and when Manthing gets home, he’ll have lots of new stories to tell me about 🙂

I would love to know what other people do for ‘self care’ on nights like this. What’s your “go to” pick-me-up? Either leave a comment below or use the new “got a question?” page to leave me an anonymous answer!

❤ Abigail

 

[Journal] Depression is like mold…

So, tonight I decided that having depression is a bit like fighting brown mold from the Pathfinder universe.

Brown mold is an interesting thing. It’s a pretty standard looking thing that you find plastered to walls and floors in dungeons, and when left alone it’s more or less harmless. However, when you encounter the brown mold, that’s where things get interesting. When it finds a source of heat (see: endothermic creatures, adventurers, pets, etc.), it feeds off that heat and draws it from any surrounding sources until they are ice cold. Anything within range of it’s draw begins to take cold damage as it eats away at the heat source magically. If you blast it with fire to try and destroy it, it simply doubles in size and continues on it’s merry existence.

Depression is an interesting thing. It’s pretty standard and most people have experienced it. You find little seeds of it stuck inside people, and when everything is going well, it’s more or less harmless. However, when you encounter depression head on because it’s been set off, that’s where things get interesting. When it finds a source of happiness (friends, family, favourite things, etc.), it feeds of that joy until it’s source has been extinguished – replaced by the same apathy and misery depression makes. People within range of someone affected by depression begin to take friendship damage as the condition causes the sufferer to push people away and find isolation, something that’s not always visible. If you drag the sufferer out into a social event or force them into ‘fun’, the depression doubles in size and leads to further feelings of isolation and sadness.

My life is undergoing some pretty big changes right now. Like. Literally life changing changes. And I’d doing my best to take it in my stride, but I’m no saint and I’ll be the first to admit that I’m actually afraid of change. I’ll run at it with a warrior’s face when I have to, but by the same token, I’m happy to just sit here and mind my own business and just do my own thing. This change has unsettled me. It’s changed the way I interact with people, it’s changed what I’ve been doing with my time and it changes how much patience I’ve had over the last few weeks -both with other people and myself.

It’s honestly starting to show. Because on one hand, I’m handling things damn well. I got through a funeral, helped with the prep, organised 50% of everything, have held things together and not slapped heads when relatives made truly horrid comments on the day, and then called my mum after to repeat them. I’m helping with the legal matters. I’m sorting the house. I’m slowly adjusting to the life changes I’m facing. I’m doing a damn fine job. On the other hand, my depression is out of hand, my anxiety is a dickweed, I feel I can count on one hand the friends that are actual friends and my body is an asshole. I feel like I’m fraying at the edges while simultaneously being the atlas of my world right now. And it’s incredibly confusing because I feel like I can’t be both of them at the same time.

I’m going to leave the blog here for tonight because I’m just too damn exhausted to analyze the situation much further. But I do plan on having at least one comic this week if everything goes to plan. Anyway, it’s almost 2am. I’ll pick up more on this another night.

[Journal] A catch up (and other things)

As I’m starting this post, it’s 2:11am and I’m lying in bed, typing this on my phone with manthing halfway draped across my back. Have you ever been so tired you couldn’t sleep? I honestly have no idea what my body is doing. I apologise for any incoherence in the following post. I seem to have spent most of today running on two and a half brain cells and I’m struggling to make sense of autocorrect on my phone.

Thank god Christmas and New Year is gone for another few hundred days. I managed to survive it all by the seat of my pants and a lot of coffee. Christmas day was spent visiting family (manthing’s and then mine) though we still need to see my family up north. Time seems to work strangely around celebrations. Boxing day was spent hiding at home. NYE was at my adoptive dad’s place and was very interesting. I don’t have the brain to elaborate right now, but suffice to say it was food for a lot of thought.

The last few weeks have been a bit of a blur between thr seasonal madness and my bi – weekly Chiro appointments. This means that I’ve been in a fair bit of pain and spent the last few days in a nasty pain flare. I’ve tried to do my usual socialising,  but I won’t lie – it’s left me terribly worn out. I’m back to feeling like that blanket that’s been worn so much it’s fraying at the edges.

Right now I’m having trouble focusing on my writing thanks to stabbing back pain. I’m going to take a wild guess and assume I’ve managed to aggravate it today. Today was helping with fixing a shed, by the way. The problem is that all my pain seems to be linked. I’m getting the headaches and pelvic pain and then costo pain in the chest and aches in my legs. All because my back is being a twat.

I feel a little like a tangled puppet. With all of this going on, I’ve also found it hard to be motivated. I really do want to try a 365 drawing challenge. Or at least a creative challenge where I make something each day. Yesterday I helped make a shed a little tidier. Today (technically) I wrote this blog and will be helping with a Pathfinder game later in the day. The day before I made a squid beanie. The day before that… does making carbon dioxide count? If not, I made the house a little messier. In all seriousness,  I really do want to do this. If you have a suggestion for a drawing, or another creative challenge leave it in the comments. I think it would be awesome to document the process so, at the end of a long week, I can look back and say “I’m not quite so useless after all”. Without the implied self – depreciation,  of course. It’s just a little sense of achievement I can look forward to.

My problem tonight is that I’m exhausted but my body won’t stop and my anxiety is playing up because of the physical stress. I guess this journal had really been more of a journal than a lot of my other entries in that it’s a genuine stream of thought. On that note, I have a few articles I’d like to write up and share.

For now, I really need to pee so I’m going to wrap this blog entry up (first one for the year. How about that?), do my thing and then maybe play some Pokemon until I get comfy.

Be good ❤

[Photo] Earning my spoons

image

(Caption because it may not be clear: Spoon reads “Earned my spoon”)

A while ago my mother got me this little pendant off Etsy. If I could remember who made it, I’d link them. It normally hangs in my kitchen below the clock,  or on one of the handles here so I always look at it.

Today is moving day. After over a month of complete bullshit, we’re finally moving out of this toxic house and into somewhere better. Rather than packing the necklace in my bag to get lost in the abyss, I thought it was rather appropriate that I wear it today. I’m fifteen kinds of exhausted, my feet feel ready to fall off and my body is trying to brew a migraine, but I feel genuinely humbled by the friends that have turned out to help us today.

After all the crap, good things do happen 🙂

[Journal] That little blue pill

Today saw another visit to the specialist. Aside from consistently being over an hour late every time I go to see him, very little has changed; we’re still exactly two tenths of bugger-all close to improving my pain, but that doesn’t mean that we’re not going to throw medications at it!

After much debate over just how awful Cymbalta was for me (it’s cool, disregard everything I say the first time around, doc) we came to the conclusion that the Lyrica does actually help the horrible shooting nerve pain, but does nothing for the muscular pain or the burning joint pain or anything else that’s going on. So, the Lyrica stays. That’s cool. We put me back on the Celebrex, double my dose and cross our fingers that this might help some other kind of pain – you don’t know unless you try these things. It’s also important that I go back on some kind of anti-depressant/anxiety control and get my sleep back into some kind of order. At present, I’m sleeping for maybe 3 hours a night, if I’m lucky. Unfortunately, I’m also suffering some major mental/cerebral fuckery. Memory loss. Major memory loss. The kind where I’ll forget what day it is, why I got up to use the bathroom (yes, when it’s kind of obvious) and what I’m talking about mid way through a conversation.

So, the deal is that I’ve been put on Amytriptaline. Some of you know that this goes very poorly for me, but this is my option right now. 10811614_10153360609232942_398713081_n Mostly due to my own cockup – I could only remember amytriptaline when I went in, not what it did to me (and I had Manthing with me, too, but he couldn’t remember) so there’s a good chance I’ll need to have this changed by a GP some time in the next week. Granted, I am on a very low dose, so if I do react badly, I at least won’t want to gnaw my own ankle off because it’s smack talking me. But, I’m going to have to start keeping a log of what shit I react badly to and what stuff I can take. Just, for the life of me, I couldn’t remember if it was the Endep or the Xydep, and he would have picked one either way and said “let’s try this and see if it’s this one”, so we’re functionally in the same place.

At the same time, there’s a lot going on in my  brain right now. The real estate have decided to functionally be dicks about the entire housing thing, but we got approved for a new place that we can move into after the 21st. We’re $2500 out of pocket, but jesus tapdancing christ, we don’t have to put up with the hell that is here. We almost wrote off the car today/died, but no biggie. I have no small amount of applause for Manthing’s driving skills for avoiding what would have otherwise been a really awful situation. I’m exhausted and my head hurts. Tomorrow tickets for the Foo Fighters go on sale and I want need to be at their concert in Feb. I’m crossing my fingers that I get tickets for myself, manthing and two friends. They go on sale in 9 hours and I will sell my firstborn child for one.

At this point, I’m running out of brain to write, so I’m going to wrap things up. I’ve got a few comics up my sleeves (just need the time/equipment to draw them and one of those  two are in boxes!) and a few other ideas going on, but you’ll have to wait for that 🙂

[Journal] A not so short update.

I’ll be honest with you all. I have actually been avoiding my blog lately because I feel that, in order to post anything else, I owe a update of what’s been happening for me to be so quiet since my last post. To put things bluntly, all hell has broken lose on our end and I feel like I’m clutching at straws trying to deal with it all.

It started with the move from our old place to this one. For a bit of context, Manthing and I now live in a block of 10 town houses. They’re basically built on top of each other and, even though ours is one of two fee-standing ones, I can still hear my neighbours picking their nose at 3am. Anyway. Naturally we organise it all and the weather goes full retard. Torrential rain, flash flooding and weather warnings now bring up memories of moving house for me. The guys we hired worked well enough, though they decided to make snarky remarks at the new house about how tight we were, making them do their job by taking a few light shelves and boxes upstairs.

Manthing made his own snippy comment about how I had a disability and that’s why we hired them, otherwise we’d be doing it ourselves, and the eldest asked what it was. Manthing simply said it was like Arthritis. Of course, the mover couldn’t shut his mouth, so he said that he had Arthritis in his knee and took Prednisone and that fixed him right up, that I should try it. Manthing said I did and not only did it not help, that it made things worse. That shut them up. It really upset me, though, and for two reasons. One, we were paying their wages. The least they could do was keep their asshole opinions to themselves, or hold their tongues until we were out of earshot. Mostly, it was the fact that everyone seems entitled to comment on MY health lately. These guys moved my mobility gear. They shifted my scooter and my wheelchair and asked who it belonged to. They knew it was mine and yet still decided to act like my health was somehow their problem. Like I wasn’t affected enough to pay someone to help us make our lives a little easier. I could go on, but if I get bogged down in this, I won’t get to the rest of the update.

After that fiasco came the Unpackening. Living out of cardboard boxes is not what I’d call fun. It’s like trying to use the bathroom and knowing the toilet paper is in one of sixteen boxes. You really need to pee, but you can’t until you go through and hope to god you find the bog roll in time. Every square inch of the garage was filled by boxes and property. The lounge room, the bedroom, the office. All boxes. There’s standing room for maybe three adults (with no concept of personal space) in my office. Everywhere I look, cardboard boxes are grinning at me and we can’t do a god damn thing about it (see: I’ll get to that bit of the story).

We had been in the new place two nights when a friend came over to visit. He mentioned that it looked like someone had put mud on my car. Turns out some shitbags had not only covered my bonnet in coffee grounds, but either they, or some other assholes, had also broken into my car.  They had gone through the glove box, thrown shit around, tried to take the radio…  Two nights and my car (which had been parked on the street under a street light right near the driveway to our complex) had already been broken into and vandalised. Straight after that, I got an alarm fitted to my car. In the two weeks we’ve been here, it’s been set off three times. One of which was by a very loud truck driving past and another by one of the residents here reversing into me and driving off like the spineless fuck they are.

At this point I’ve got that “I’m done with this shit” feeling. We hadn’t even made it to our first week and already had shit going wrong. I didn’t want to see where we stood by Friday if this was how things were going. That week, we found out that the previous tenants had sanded the walls here rather than washing them. I learned this the hard way. When we moved in, I simply thought my allergies were due to some external force. We had actually picked this place due to the tiles and low-pile carpets being brilliant for my allergies because they didn’t hold onto dust well. In fact, the whole property is pretty damn new and that all worked in our favour. Anyway, I was unpacking and hanging up stuff in the wardrobe. I had changed my mind about where a hanging rack was going and moved some clothing, only to find white all over the raised crinkles in a skirt. I thought WTF. I remember throwing this in the wash. Another dress had the same issue. They had been touching the walls. I touched the wall myself and my hand came away covered in stupidly fine white powder. I touched another wall. The same thing. I went through the house, rubbing my hand on all the walls and found that for 80% of them, it was the same story. We were living in a house filled with micro particles of paint dust. They were in the carpet, on the wall, in my clothing and in the bedding. You couldn’t walk without kicking them up. I tried to vacuum them, but even my HEPA filter couldn’t cope and I had an asthma attack on the stairs. We decide for our own safety, we’re not going to unpack anything else. We’re already going to have to clean a fuckload of stuff once the issue gets fixed.

We report this to the real estate. Two weeks it took them. Two weeks with me crawling up their arse every few days. “Oh, can you send us some photos?” they said almost a week after I reported it. “Oh, we’ll get back to you” the following Monday. By this point, I’m having to take antihistamines every night to just sleep in my own bed. I’m waking up with nose bleeds. I’ve got all the signs of a sinus infection and I’ve got a serious cough. I’m fed up with their inaction. I walk into the office and the woman sees me. Gives me the “Oh fuck you’re actually here” look and proceeds to tell me that she was just about to call us, honest. The landlord has decided he’s “unwilling” to take any action on the issue. The agent looks at us and says there’s nothing she can do. I look at her utterly dumbfounded. I’m almost CERTAIN my rights as a tenant are being shat on here, but I’m not 100%. She says we’ll need to get it done ourselves. We walk out before I hit rage mode.

I spend the next two days calling up the tenancy advice line, fair trading and the works. I find out that not only am I in the right for asking the landlord to clean the house, but it’s is his legal obligation. Inaction on his part is a breach of both the tenancy agreement and our lease in three different places, and that our real estate are utterly spineless.

At this point we have three options.
1. We foot the roughly $400 cleaning bill to get the carpets wet/dry vac’d and shampoo’d and stay quiet, good little tenants.
2. We take the landlord before the tribunal so they can force him to clean the place. That’s going to take weeks at best, and all the while I’m living in what is effectively a toxic environment.
3. We give them a termination notice which states that the landlord has broken the lease in these places so we’re free to break the contract ourselves without having to pay the two thousand dollar fee.

We were advised by another real estate run by a friend’s parents that number three is our best option. If the landlord has already broken lease in the two weeks we’ve been here, imagine what shit will go down over the year we signed up for (which is another no-no on the part of our present real estate!). I have to agree. The complex is filthy. The bins are constantly trashed with rotten food thrown everywhere, nobody seems to care. In the lease we’re entitled to a quiet and clean place to live.  I’ll get to that point in a moment. But yes, three seems like the good option, even if it means we have to move again so soon. The problem is that it’s not quite that simple. You see, if we put in our notice of termination, the landlord HAS to agree to it. If he doesn’t want to clean the property he’s legally obliged to clean, I can’t imagine he’s going to want to have his source of rent leave. Which, by the way is $430 a WEEK. Yeah, that’s about the average house price here these days.

If he doesn’t agree, the matter STILL has to go before the tribunal and then they allocate the 14 day in which we have to leave (all the while still living in this dust nightmare). But guess what. We need somewhere to live lined up in those 14 days. Most places here take a week to process your application and then another week to actually sign you up for the lease, and nobody is going to accept someone still in a legally-binding clusterfuck like this one. So, basically we’re screwed if we do and we’re screwed if we don’t.

In between this mess, I’ve been organising a competition to help raise money for a charity that works for people with depression. Amusingly enough, my depression hit again the night before the event. The day was a complete and utter fuckup. As one discerning gentleman put it, it was a “blender in a brothel”. The woman that was supposed to organise it didn’t, I got flamed for 45 minutes from the organisers of the event we were at because our tiny little costumers group didn’t have fucking tanks and an airship. Where the fuck were we going to get them!? The whole thing was a nightmare. We got rained out by a freak storm, chased out of the mountains by a fire and then came home to more bullshit.

Yesterday after the fiasco I had to call the local police station about the kids next door. I won’t go into specifics, but there have been 4 families moving into the four units at the front, and one next to us. Each house has something like 4-5 children. Yesterday they ALL decided to play in the backyard of the place next to us. Now this isn’t an issue for me. What caused an issue was when they started throwing rocks at our corrugated steel fence, across the driveway at the neighbours house and at their god damn car. I mean, who the fuck does that? Anyway, I was out hanging up washing in the backyard when I heard the rocks being thrown. It was fucking loud. I asked the kids not to do that. Naturally the little fuckers didn’t. At some point they had thrown a ball into my backyard so I took it around to the front door to return it and also speak to the mother. Four doorbells later, she gets her arse out of the garage (where they had loud music blaring) and answers the door. I try to explain to her (because English isn’t her first language) that her little darlings have been little arseholes and are about to smash someone’s window and piss off the neighbours. She denies the whole thing, even when I show her the rocks in the driveway and under the car. The kids, all 7 of them, pile out into the driveway and deny everything. I go back inside, defeated. Not five minutes later the rock throwing starts again with rocks being pelted at the fence and at my back window, as well as the other targets. They also start screaming like blue murder, bring out recorders and blowing them until they screech and generally carrying on like feral animals in a backyard that’s less than 3m from my own. I put in a formal noise complaint but don’t ask the police to show up because they’ll know it’s me and I’m honestly afraid of retribution.

So right now I’m tired, fucking angry and stuck between a rock and a hard place with all of this. I have no idea what we’re going to do and, given that it’s Sunday here, I’m stuck with a day of inactivity where I can’t sort anything out because our agent doesn’t come into work until Tuesday. This isn’t including the fucking horrid pain flare I’ve had through the lot of it.

I need a hug.

This little pig went to market…

OH DEAR GOD THE DAY IS HERE!!!

Seriously. I leave for my event in just under 5 hours time. I have to pack the car, sort out the shopping, do a last run-through of my inventory, make sure i pack the costumes and enough clothing for three days, do a panic check, make sure I have all my medication (and spares), double check the house and then wait for the housemate to get home. He’ll be following us and then we leave the house sitter with the budgies and hope they don’t maul him to death with cuteness in the mean time. They’re vicious little things. Nobody was saved.

Gringa, I promise I will TRY to get enough sleep this weekend, but if it’s anything like last year, we’ll still be awake because my ginger friend decided he needed to parade about the cabin in nothing but tighty-whities (nasty undies) that were grey from wear. God, I STILL have the scars from that. On the plus side, Manthing, my housemate (who shall henceforth be known as Candy. Yes, he’s a male) and I should have a relatively quiet night tonight and tomorrow is an easy setup from 10 since it’s only a half day event. Ahhhh.

If I can, I’ll try to get some blogging done each night. Just a bit of a recap of the day. From memory, however, the net there is so may kinds of awful, so I may need to either have it saved as a draft and play with it more when I get back home, or just draw lots of comics. Maybe both. I guess it depends on how busy I am. Heck, if you’re all REAL good, I might even take a few pictures for you all 🙂

Anyway, I best be off. My painkillers have kicked in (yeah, it’s one of THOSE days) and no rest for the wicked here. You all have fun and I’ll see you on the other side of the weekend!

 

Crunch time

Note to self: You have a doctor’s appointment at 2:45pm today.

So, we’re the day before the day we leave before the day of the first day of the big event. Make sense of that.

I’m finally getting over the flu, though I’m still Queen Shit for Brains. I’ve worked like a madwoman through the last few days to produce beanies, collars, cuffs, jewellery, bits and piece and all sorts of crap, and I’m still not done. I still have so much work to do that it isn’t funny, and half my equipment is having major screw-ups (my brain included) so I’m taking a minute out of the chaos to blog about it. As you do.

Collars

Here’s a picture of some of the shinies I’ve bee working on. Yup. Decorative collars. Not the kinky kind. I don’t make those for this event. It tends to freak too many people out,  but I do make them, yes. I have  seriously not had enough sleep to deal with today.