An update for those cheering on from the sidelines

For those playing along in the ‘what shit has fallen on Judith’s head this time’ stakes at home, the last three months have been pretty off the wall. I went manic and lost everything, is the short version. The long version is considerably longer!

About four months ago, mania reared its ugly head, with its favourite companions restlessness, agitation, and hypersexuality. This went about as well as can be expected, and as of July 1st I lost my husband. I had to start my life over again, and that was hellishly expensive. All the debt I’d crawled out from under in my time of being married fell on me again like a tonne of bricks. So I’m . . . fiscally challenged, shall we say. But I still had my job, so there was a way through this.

‘Had’ being the operative word. I parted ways with my employer on September 22nd. I’d had some inkling something was wrong, but it was still unexpected. I now have a few weeks to find a job, before my savings run out and I lose my apartment. I don’t know what happens from there. It’s a 13-week stand down for the dole, and I don’t have 13 weeks of savings. Perhaps I should chuck in the apartment now and go live in a hostel where it’s cheaper? That would stretch my savings further.

On the child front, the child that I got the hellishly expensive apartment as a sanctuary for has decided that she doesn’t want to live with me any more, but she wants me to fly down every 2-3 weeks to see her :/ . I have a bunch of flights already booked and paid for, but once they are done I don’t know if I have the resources to keep doing that. It all depends on me getting a good job, fast. Which in turn involves the investment of money – I need to get my hair dyed back to a natural colour, from blurple. It’s not as easy as just colouring over or lifting the dye out – I need to get it professionally done or I’ll turn green.

The other child? Oh sweet mother of Jesus. Her new diagnostic papers have her with Valproate Syndrome, ADHD, and a provisional diagnosis of being on the autism spectrum. Holy shit. It feels like a weight has been lifted, as something I’ve been saying for years is vindicated, and then dropped back down, as I realise that she’s not just a little special, and she needs a lot more help than she’s getting. On the school from they’re putting a ‘behaviour plan’ in place as she gets more and more unmanageable in the wake of the split. How far that is from disciplinary action is not entirely clear, but her teacher seems to be of the opinion that she’s deliberately defiant, not just not understanding. This may be true, but on the other hand, with the autism diagnosis, what new things do we need to understand about her? What new ways do we need to devise to deal with her? These are important questions, and I feel like they’re already not handling the ADHD diagnosis well, so I worry about how well the school can really cope with her. We have referrals to child mental health for her in the works, maybe that will help? She was also kicked out of after school care for the rest of the term, but with any luck she will be ok when she goes back next term, because otherwise I’ll have to be a mother from 3-6pm every day, and that’s not ideal for getting a job.

On top of all this, I had a series of seizures, after about 5 years seizure free, and now I’m back to not being able to drive and trying to get my anticonvulsant medications right again.

In better news, I’m seeing someone, who is rather sweet and lovely. I don’t know how this will play out, as there are significant challenges in our future, but this sensible, sweet man is who I need to stay grounded in this moment.

So that’s what’s new in my world. The shit hit the fan, and it’s currently still spraying out in all directions. I’m waiting for the next blow. Death of a friend or family member? Inability to get a job? Child kicked out of after school care, or worse, out of school? Troubles with the other child? There’s so many ways the shit could splatter, most of which I haven’t even thought of yet but will kick myself for not foreseeing earlier. I just have to roll with it and hold on, hoping that it gets better.

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