azurelunatic: (Pacifica)
Friday: I woke up at a sensible hour, and did housework. Purple emailed me about the afternoon's beer bash, and I collected myself to go to that. I was running a little late, but made it at last, just before Purple arrived himself. I ran into a few people, and saw people from my old team sitting around the fire pit.

I collected with them there, and Purple soon joined me.

One of my old team had been going through some significant personal changes; she talked a little about that. I gave her reciprocal information, and my card with my real name, and the information to join the tech-slack. (Later, I would ping a former colleague who had done some pioneering work on that process in this workplace, and thank her, since it sounded like my old teammate had gone through a much better experience with the workplace bureaucracy than the former colleague had.)

She and Purple proceeded to talk synthesizer projects until she left to catch her train.

I will need to email my old manager about when to visit in the next few weeks.

The food offerings were surprisingly edible for the context. It was corned beef and cabbage sandwiches with slightly inexplicably rubbery rolls, some under-fried potato-and-cabbage fried things (tasty, but with the consistency of glue), various very green vegetables (cucumber, peas, broccoli, asparagus, and possibly more), cheese soup, and ... green hummus. No green beer, though.

It was a gorgeous evening, not quite too warm. We were joined by the Scruffy Canadian briefly. Someone who I thought might be the Cute Receptionist wandered by. Since I'd missed connecting with her the last time I thought I saw her, when she got close enough I called the name. In case it was her.

It was her. We caught up a bit. Purple teased me.

We hailed lb as he was headed out of the office with his deep dish pizza leftovers. There was a good chat, including some wtf-ery over a github thread that a new arrival in channel had shared (and participated in). There are some statements, such as "An SJW's work is never done", which have radically different meanings based on the context of the person who said it, and since we don't know them that well yet, we are uncertain whether this person is working for the greater good, or complaining about people working for the greater good.

There were dinner plans. I nearly accidentally left my phone in Purple's office until it tweeted.

Dinner was nice. We really should go to the Thai restaurant near the Trader Joe's more often, since it's delicious, close, and reasonably priced. Despite the bell peppers, prawns, and peanuts in nearly everything. (I am attempting to figure out whether peanuts take the surface of my mouth off the way walnuts do, because that would just be ... perfect.)

The Signal app has resolved some of its issues for voice calls, and my partner and I were able to talk nearly all the way home. It only cut out at the place that still gets me a lot on regular network calls, where 35 joins 280 by San Andreas Lake.

It's lovely to say a sleepy goodnight to my partner as we both settle into our beds, and go to sleep with the connection open, knowing that the other is there. I swapped my old Douchebag Headphone (the around-the-neck model with the earbuds) for one that purportedly connects to two devices automatically (it did not, but it wasn't a downgrade) and thus my partner got my old one. (It so happens that I'm the one who digs leading-edge tech, and they like to squeeze every last drop of usefulness out of old tech, so we are an excellent pair there.) They are enjoying it. I was delighted when I saw them in it, because the colors are accidentally representative of both of our favorites.


Saturday started out quietly, with various audio and video chat. One of the video chat things was marred by no helpful audio coming through from the other end; I should have reset when I noticed that it wasn't doing so well.

A friend just had some technically-minor surgery, and I had made plans to go over and say hello and congratulate this weekend. There was a little bit of plan-changing, but in the end I went over there in the afternoon and said hello and such. My aunt had stopped by with some fabric for me and some cashew butter for them. Due to the placement of the surgery, we kept ourselves to heartfelt arm-clasps and some back-patting.

When I got back down to the street, I discovered that a Very Large Pickup Truck had pulled up alongside me with its hazard lights on. Unfortunately, the driver was nowhere in sight, and I wasn't sure if I had enough room to pull out. (I was parallel parked, with a sedan nearly touching my bumper in the back, and a Prius a good distance in front of me, and less than a car length of space on the diagonal to get out.) I decided that I would make one try at it, and if I didn't have clearance that I was comfortable with, I would stop and wait for the driver to return.

It turned out that even though I think there was only one foot of clearance on each side, I was able to get out. (My partner cheered me on.)

I wound up picking up dinner on my way home. They did manage to get my order wrong, although in a different way to what I thought: I thought they'd gotten the wrong thing to the right receipt entry; they had in fact gotten the order entirely wrong from the receipt on down. The replacement was also subtly wrong, but I was not going to argue at that point. (My partner, who had been on the phone the entire time, heard my order and was able to verify that if it was a hallucination that I'd said that, it was a shared hallucination.)


The calendar sharing is going well so far.

There had been an incident. (My partner and I arranged a date; it hadn't gone in their calendar because they thought they'd remember it. Unfortunately, three people managed to step square in each other's complicated traumas, and it took a while to recover. With a lot of communication and crying.) After that, I shared my social calendar with my partner (not the full-on calendar with the specifics on the doctor appointments and such). I also shared the "shadow calendar" I'd made for them, the one that has their work schedule and all the stuff that they tell me about when we're planning our weeks. It's not yet time for us to share a single social calendar.

My partner has shared that calendar on with the friends they're staying with until the situation with the ex gets cleared up. They're not quite comfortable sharing it with others ... just yet. That may change, as the weeks go on.

Today, I'm setting up the week to come, and doing the various communication that goes with it. It's not sexy or glamorous, but it's the little bits of caring contact that helps sustain a relationship. I have to remember to translate the four to five calendar entries that make up one doctor-type appointment into a single block in the social time, ideally when entering it, but at minimum when setting up the week to come.

My attention deficit disorder was diagnosed in the fall of 2015. For a while, I'm not sure exactly how long, I've had to start with the actual time of the actual event I'm going to, and schedule backwards and forwards from that, in order to make sure I have a fair chance of getting there on time and in good order.

First I enter the event, with its actual duration.

Then I figure out where I'm going to be before the event, and figure out how long it takes me to get to that place from the place I am going to be before that. (It usually takes me an hour or so to get from home to any given place in the city of San Francisco; 45 minutes to get to old-work; an hour to get further down-peninsula; anywhere from 30 minutes to over an hour to get across the Bay.) I make a separate calendar entry for the transit time, with a little wiggle room.

I figure out where the next place I need to be is, and I do the same thing for that side.

I then give myself an hour's notice to start getting ready, even if I'm scheduled for something else at that time.

If it looks like it's close to my likely sleep time, I count back an hour further and allocate that as wake-up time. (If I haven't slept enough, I will use the wake-up time for an extra hour of sleep, and try to do any complicated prep the night before. Using a checklist, if possible. Sometimes this warrants an entry of its own.)

If it's early enough, I will count back eight hours from the wake time, and schedule that as sleep.
When it's a scheduled sleep time, I will have to schedule myself a bedtime reminder, which is an hour before sleep.

Sometimes, there's a chance that events will run long. In the case of my regular dentist, they've been known to run an hour late. So for them, I schedule in that buffer time. Just in case.

If it's a doctor appointment, the actual appointment goes in my bright red non-negotiable deadlines calendar, and all the ancillary things get in my main calendar. If it's not a doctor or similar, the main event goes directly in my personal calendar.

When it's something that's going to affect my social calendar, the fore and aft transit times and the event itself get globbed into one block of time that I'm unavailable for other events. Since my social calendar can be shared with people who don't need any personal details, unless it's a public(-ish) event, it gets described in vague terms. Dr. X at this address on this floor for this purpose gets vague-ed into "Doctor Appointment."

Stuff in my partner's shadow calendar get vague-ed up the same way. Why yes, my partner is going to X event at Y venue, there is a topic, and they're going with Z. That is "With Z at [vague description]." Or "Date with Z." Before my partner shared the calendar with their hosts, I scrubbed back through and edited a few items that I'd put on there, which had a little too much detail for general consumption. Even so, their hosts were clearly reading through past events, because I overheard Ms. Documentation read out the title of one (with some questions), and I promptly collapsed in giggles. Oh, dear.


There are two current crocheting projects, one of them started a while back. The older one is the penis-based sex ed hat, a sequel to the vagina-based one. So far I have urethra, bladder, glans, some ductwork, and I need to stuff the first testicle before I can close it up. (The testicle is blue, naturally.) I will probably put a drawstring or something on the scrotum so the testes can be examined easily.

The other one is a lace nightgown out of black #10 crochet-cotton thread. I'm putting #6 clear blue-green iris beads on it here and there. We'll see how long I take to finish that one. The beads are in a narrow prescription bottle that fits nicely inside the ball of thread.

I have been going back to paper to-do lists for daily use, and attempting to scan them into my image archives. I've started dating them so I have a better idea of how things went. It's been a fairly reasonable system for reminding me of what I need to get done, and I can move things forward in a helpful way. Sometimes I start pages ahead of time for stuff that needs to be done on a specific date.


After a week and a half of the new meds, I am encouraged at what they're doing with my sleep. That may wind up being a separate entry.
azurelunatic: panic button.  (panic)
Last we properly heard, my partner was preparing for a highly emotionally charged stealth departure to achieve a separation from their abusive ex. (The situation is complicated. Once you get to more than one of the following, you've got a problem: home ownership, bitter breakup, long-term relationship, state-specific laws on property division, laws on property division that vary based on the type of relationship, intimate partner abuse, and probably factors that I'm forgetting and/or don't care to mention.)

As we have possibly come to appreciate, getting out of abusive relationships is hard as fuck. I would like to point out here that I did not in fact "get myself out of" my relationship with Shawn. Shawn asked me for a sexual favor, rudely ) and then told me that he and his new girlfriend were monogamous now, and thereby broke up with me. #classy

Some of the steps. )

There was a document, the Book of Shitty Compromises. Read more... )

That, friends, is what we call a shitty compromise.

My partner was training themselves to notice when they were making a shitty compromise for the sake of homeland tranquility, or at least, non-esclation. They weren't necessarily challenging their ex on things, or doing what they would truly prefer to do, but they were keeping track of those times and things in the Book of Shitty Compromises.

Also in the Book of Shitty Compromises was a checklist, the checklist of things that would have to be done in order to achieve physical separation.

In my professional life, I am pretty confident in my ability to handle logistics for things like little two-day professional conferences for a hundred or so people. That's a lot of moving parts, and (due to past experience) I can't count on me actually being there for every step of the way to direct all the people who are going to need directing. This means checklists.

I am also not the person who is the last word on decisions for this stuff. That means coaxing preferences and event visions out of the people who are actually in charge of that. Sometimes this means coaxing logistical details out of people who are used to executing the event but aren't used to articulating what exactly is needed. Sometimes that means going "Okay, when you say X, what do you have to do to make X happen?" and then, "So when you say you 'just do Y', who do you talk to about that? When does that happen? How do they know where they have to be?"

I brought those skills to bear on my partner. Y'all, if you've never had someone grill you for ... quite a while ... on the details of what you'll actually need to do in order to leave an abusive ex? This is not easy. This is very, very, very not easy. We weren't sure if I was putting too much pressure, not enough, or on the wrong place. And I am so fucking proud of them.

They thought they wouldn't be ready in January. I saw the signs of increasing restiveness in them, and ... wanted to make sure that as much as could be done, was done. Just in case there had to be an unexpected leap.

Saturday the 7th of January, they realized that they'd been pushed too far, that they were still (so, so very) scared, but they were more scared at the prospect of spending another month subjected to the ex's whims and demands and escalation. (And the ex had started escalating again. Verbal abuse, and impossible demands for the terms of the breakup.)

Having started the process to gather muscle to help move and pizza funds (much appreciated, thank you all so much), we realized that one of the bottlenecks was that my partner would have to be in about five places at once if this was going to be conducted as a pinpoint operation and possibly in the presence of the ex.

One of the ex's skills is an attention to detail that includes noticing changes (stuff moved, stuff removed) in the household. My partner got enough grief from a few small changes that they knew pre-packing was a non-starter. So they were left with a few days of tense anticipation but with few actionable items. They also weren't sure how many boxes they'd need; I am the one with the advanced spatial logic skills in this relationship.

My partner was also not rescuing all of their stuff. If they were, it would have been more work, but simpler: pack it all up and go, sort it out later. This was somewhat more strategic: pack up the stuff in order of priority, starting with the stuff that my partner would need for a few weeks crashing with a friend, and going in descending order of priority (of stuff that was theirs and would be hard to replace, expensive to replace, and easy for the ex to mess with if the ex was being vengeful) until either packing materials or time ran out. This meant that my partner had to tell people who they possibly didn't know all that well what to pack, and I could see this getting in the way of everything. They'd have to be running about from room to room directing, when it might take the entire time to corner the Antisocial Cat and get her in the travel cage.

"Can you take pictures of the stuff you want to pack?" I asked. "That won't disturb anything, but maybe I can start estimating the volume or something."

That, they could do. So as part of my organization process in the estimation, I wound up preparing a visual packing list.

I will probably use similar methods to prepare a packing list for myself, when it's my turn to move, since it turned out so well. (My partner can perhaps, at some point, give details on how it worked on their end.)

Read more... )

We gathered support: people with vehicles, people to pack, pizza money. (And a little bit of tea-and-chocolate money that was a holiday gift from a friend of mine.) They confirmed that their friends not quite an hour's drive away were still available to host them. They confirmed maximum availability. I blocked their ex on Facebook before posting a call for help, and tagged people who I suspected wouldn't be able to help, but who might have friends who would be able to help. There were a few people, and one of them was able to help with the unloading.

They went to see the lawyers, and signed papers and paid money for the lawyers' help in getting the ex out of their house and returning their house to them. There was no turning back now. (They still had fears and reservations, and still thought that this might be too cruel to do to the ex. Despite everything the ex had done, and the ex's continual show of bad faith.)

I realized a few things.

My partner was about to do the most terrifying thing of their life.
My partner was about to do the most terrifying thing of their life, not knowing whether their ex was going to be present to interfere.
My partner was about to do something that terrified the snot out of them, and would be entirely absorbed in the process, and therefore unavailable to do anything except engage with the process.
I was too far away to help, and my presence would only burn money and exacarbate any problems with the ex.
I was not going to be okay in the slightest. (I would prove to be less okay than the night before my surgery.)
I was going to need someone to physically be with me, so I wouldn't be alone for this.
Purple had the plague, and couldn't do dinner.
[personal profile] quartzpebble had another engagement that night.
[personal profile] jd could be available after work. I arranged to pick him up from the Caltrain station, and thence to get pizza.

The day came. Tuesday, the 10th of January. The ex had been planning to run some errands. My partner wasn't sure whether the ex would complete the errands before move time. As of 4pm, the ex hadn't left for those errands. My partner wasn't sure whether the ex would have left for those errands by move time. The ex had also asked my partner to do a grocery run, and my partner wasn't sure if that would leave time to pick up one of the people helping move.

I gently suggested that since nothing on the grocery list was super ultra urgent, perhaps the ex could pick up their own god damn groceries the following day.

"Even now, despite everything planned for tonight, I am still in the mode of doing what they want."

Read more... )

And my partner and their cat were safely ensconced in the spare room of some friends, and everyone was safe.


The ex, of course, tried to call (the call was not answered), and texted.
Read more... )

And my partner's terror, slowly, began to ebb, with every day that their ex didn't show up to throw a lawn tantrum at work.

And we are okay.
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
It seems that when my watch crashes in the middle of a sleep session, it does not preserve sleep data. Good to know. Unfortunately, Pebble-the-company is going away, leaving me with a likely-unsupported tech bauble. (One that's a great boon to my life, however...)

The Wednesday/Thursday night was not a great night for sleep, and then the watch crashed, leaving only one hour of sleep out of at least three logged. But I did get enough sleep.

Apparently shipping patterns are not quite back to normal after the holidays, because the new phone that won't keep fucking rebooting itself, the keyboard cover, and the heated CPAP hose, are all at least a day behind the estimated and/or promised delivery time. Alas.

I am in particular impatient about the phone. Though I know if I start doing something inconvenient and sticky, that'll probably be when the delivery arrives ... despite the package tracking not having indicated that it's left the shipment facility. *sigh*

Purple has located delivery pizza that he can eat! This resulted in leftovers, so he wasn't available for dinner out until Wednesday. We decided on pho. It was cold and raining, so I wanted something nice and warm.

It was a lovely time; he brought R along from work, and it's always good to see her. I had grabbed the shirt from her conference off the top of the laundry heap, mostly because I'd worn it recently and it went well with the skirt. (The skirt used to be black. It's since faded to a nice soft gray.)

R had been off communing with penguins and glaciers, and had a number of nice pictures to share.

After dinner, Purple and I went in search of dessert, and R turned into a pumpkin. Among other things, we discussed dreams, and how we're both inclined towards stress-dreams when things are rough, but rarely nightmares.

Naturally, I woke this morning from a legitimate nightmare. Nightmare. )

I've been discussing the logistics of some upcoming stuff with my partner. This has been emotionally difficult, and a bit brain-breaking (so many logistical details, and I'm not there to actually handle any of them; behold my control-freak nature) but we're getting stuff documented.

The replacement phone was due to arrive on Wednesday. It did not, in fact, arrive on Wednesday; somewhere in there I saw the arrival date had changed to Thursday. And then it did not arrive on Thursday. This made me cross, and worried.

I've been using the phrase "Call if you'd like" a lot with the partner. It doesn't necessarily take into account the complexities of their reality, in which they may want to call me but other factors make it unlikely, but it does extend a friendly invitation.

My partner spends a substantial chunk of time on the phone with their ex, for reasons that I find good and sufficient (and that get up my nose, because their ex is a piece of work). My partner has taken to responding to their ex's inquiries about whether they are available to be called with, "Call if you'd like."

The ex has taken a strong exception to this phrase. It implies, you see, that perhaps my partner does not want to be talking to them, and would only begrudgingly do so because the ex had forced the conversation on them. So the phrase makes the ex not want to call, because the ex doesn't like to feel ~unwelcomed~ or like they're ~pushy~ about these friendly social calls. So the ex badgers my partner to not use that phrase. Because that's what friendly exes do, to make sure that all their calls are welcome.

I got to have a nice chat with my partner, as they did in fact want to call me. Unfortunately, I saw the phone ring without either my watch or headset humming at me to let me know that there was a call. So I wound up putting the phone on my face like it was a handset.

I did eventually reboot the phone after we were done talking, and it started acknowledging bluetooth again. Sigh.

I called Darkside to catch up. He was playing Saints Row 3, which is excessively silly. We giggled over it. And I managed to drop a decorative metal basket (with sharp edges) on my hand when moving things around in it, so I shredded two fingernails and a bit of callus on one fingertip. Alas.

Darkside and I generally avoid talking politics. This time I mentioned being afraid. Read more... )

So that was fun.
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (blue star)
Having got the CPAP, I seem to have been sleeping more solidly. My watch tells me about a lot of nights of 8+ hours of sleep. Of course, I haven't decreased my amount of time in bed yet. My friends claim I may be making up for oceans of sleep dep...


I'm catching up on reading, still. I'm tidying. I'm contemplating. I'm keeping up with my exercise. I'm waiting to hear from various job prospects.


There are still health things I have to take care of, but I feel like the big ones are on their way towards resolution.


My partner has survived the winter break. Next step: talking to professionals about things. We had a nice long chat yesterday about stuff. Today's chat was much shorter, as they were working on other things.


Ev's winter break is not over yet. She got a library position, and has been assigned the tedious things. Thank fuck for normal problems. Tedious winter break job is a normal problem. [Various mother shenanigans] are not normal problems.


Yesterday was time to make me un-shaggy. I trimmed my bangs. Today was the re-blue-ing session.


I checked in with Purple about dinner. He has quite a bit of very good leftover pizza, so he was going to work on that rather than do dinner out tonight. An excellent reason to not go out! It's also windy and rainy. It's been enough of that to make it cold-ish inside, so I've had to wear socks from time to time. The horror!

My phone was supposed to arrive tomorrow (Wednesday). Unfortunately, it seems to be on track to arrive Thursday, instead...


Australia, and contemplations of arachnids in a different sense than the usual. )


I know that not all of the Dreamwidth documentation is up to date. At some point soonish, there may be a docs party. My friends who are perhaps wandering in may be positioned to help by virtue of their neophyte perspective: if there's something that the docs are inadequate in answering, this might be a good place for the docs crew to start working on filling in the gaps.

Quiet day

1/1/17 23:34
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
I imagine that with enough exposure, I will learn the loops and angles of my partner's handwriting. The addressed envelope on my clean desk already seems less alien.

I cleaned, for new year's eve. I wanted to start the year with a clean desk and no dirty dishes. And it came to pass.

I got a solid start on my quilt. It's going to be haphazard, I know. But it'll be my kind of haphazard. I swapped out the old broken keyboard for the new one. Same model. I won't be able to keep using the same model forever, but I hope to get another four+ years out of the new one. By that point there may be something new and delightful on the market.

My watch isn't keeping proper track of my average step count. Ordinarily I'd expect some fluctuation as days pass, but it hasn't done that. So I'll have to look at the averages elsewhere. And it turns out that my average actually passed my goal, the goal that had been out of sight between the surgery and the depression. So now I've got a new goal.

At some point my feelings about LiveJournal became, approximately: "I love and trust my friends there, but they're not the ones making the decisions." And now I hear that it's possible that there's no-one working there that I know anymore. (Well. I knew one person in the Moscow office, and had heard the names of others, so I wouldn't want the Moscow office to be trampled by angry yaks.) And the servers no longer have California IP addresses, and (I hear) some pro-Ukraine blogs have turned up missing, after the move. And there are much weaker protections on user privacy over there.

So that's a thing that's happening.

I don't know what country has the best user protection laws these days. There's a new [site community profile] dw_news post up, on the recent events.

Cloudflare, DW's CDN, was hit particularly hard by the leap second. Earlier, there was a DW web server misbehaving. kab got Mark out of bed for that one.

There's now a need for Russian-speaking volunteer support. The old is new again.

I made the mistake of getting chewable vitamin C tablets, instead of the easily swallowed variety. While I'm swallowing them all the same, this means that their fake-orange taste leeches onto the tongue. This would be less of a problem, except my spironolactone is peppermint-flavored. I'm becoming accustomed to the orange-juice-and-toothpaste effect of taking my pills, now...

Part of the quiet effect of the day is less chatter with my partner. Uncharitable words about the ex. )
Tags:
azurelunatic: Axial tilt is the reason for the season. (Festive red & green text; diagram of Earth's axial tilt.) (axial tilt)
09:10 PM Thursday, December 29, 2016
Plan for Friday: chill with Purple before dinner.

Could also get half-and-half.

Thursday, I tested the UI on the daylight lamp, and found that it had failed to turn on this morning due to it not being intuitively obvious when something was activated, and also the directions kind of suck, and the UI also sucks. Perhaps it'll wake me up Friday morning.

09:18 PM Saturday, December 31, 2016
Chilled with Purple before dinner. Half-and-half (and other groceries) waited until Saturday. The daylight lamp turned on both these past mornings, and was turned off with a moan. Apparently the part where it wakes me up is too effective, and I can't be having with that in the middle of a sleep cycle. Also Saturday: Ordered a new phone, since mine is fucking dying.

Friday: I slept longer than I planned to, and then wandered over to Purple's. He was watching some keyboard tutorial videos, which were actually fascinating. Partway through, a cat jumped into the lap of the guy doing the demo and began washing his hands. It's a small enough community that Purple knows the cat's name.

We then watched Mystery Men, since Purple had mentioned it to me but we'd not watched it. It was cute for what it was. He paused at the business card of the weapons guy, as I'd gone "... Chicken rentals?!?!" which made some later bits make a little more sense.

Purple called Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly to arrange dinner. He'd assumed that she'd be working, because she's her, and had thought of a few places on that end of town. However, she'd been working from home, so those were no longer convenient. We settled on a time and place. There was a little more time left, so we watched some Key and Peele.

After that was dinner. We got there early. Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly was late, on account of El Camino Real had suddenly developed a hilarious thing where none of the southbound traffic was moving. My meal came out substantially underdone. At a decent place, I'll chance a medium-rare steak on occasion. I do not prefer to chance a medium-rare hamburger, and could have sworn I'd asked for medium-well. (Purple could have sworn so also.) We wound up getting some extra dessert, as well as a do-over on the burger.

Purple and I watched some more Key and Peele, followed by what he swore was a Christmas episode of Black Mirror. It was "Nosedive", and while the word "Christmas" was uttered, it wasn't specifically Christmas-y. Uniquely for Black Mirror, we found ourselves giggling helplessly by the end, and in a lovely mood. I totally ship it.
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (blue star)
So, what a year.

* (2015) Learned I was losing my beloved administrative assistant/Yelling as a Service job, due to Silly Valley contract shenanigans.
* Mourned this loss...
* ... until I learned that my entire second department was being downsized and offshored. Then I got mad.
* Read the riot act about same to the CEO, in front of a whole-company meeting.
* Worked to hang on to some of the important friendships I had made over the course of my four years.
* Helped run a conference!
* Learned that someone I knew in my youth had gone on to do something that they really oughtn't to have done, and dealt with that information the best way I knew how.
* Presented at Open Source Bridge.
* Got up the nerve to declare myself to the person I'd been low-key flirting with since the last Open Source Bridge.
* Was kissed by this person. (Kissed them back.)
* Didn't do anything super dumb.
* Started the sort of heavy-duty communication that a very intimate but complicated relationship is going to need, just in the off chance one developed.
* ... Ooops.
* Helping my friend (and, later, dearest primary partner) begin the long, painful, and difficult process of Dealing With All The Things.
* Hysterectomy. (Plus tubes, ovaries, and bonus lymph nodes.)
* Cancer.
* Made things actually official with my primary partner, much to the relief of everyone following the saga.
* Radiation.
* Recovery.
* Fuck my sleep schedule.
* Declared my feelings to someone else, also with a not-terrible outcome. :)
* Started making tentative plans for relocation.
* Fishmummed, and saw my baby girl for winter break! #nobodydied #homefortheholidays

This was not a quiet year for me.

Compared to this time last year, I'm cancer-free. I'm in a relationship that is like a substantial external battery of capability and cope, and we seem to be mutually supportive and both still a little codswalloped over our good luck.

A lot of things about 2016 have sucked, but getting my uterus out, getting together with my partner, getting my partner pointed in the direction of freedom, and starting a very interesting conversation with a certain former co-worker -- all of those were good.

Quilt?

29/12/16 21:09
azurelunatic: Bust of Archimedes. "Eureka: (interj) the bath is too hot." (eureka)
Today was a day for trying to come back to normal: for attempting to unearth my desk from its accumulation of items, for putting away the air mattress now that Ev is safely back out of state and won't be suddenly needing my floor again, for looking at the candidate shirts for my tech company quilt.

I spent some time at a particular tech company, one that is t-shirt happy. Now that I'm no longer there, the shirts have very little use, other than to clothe me, and I'm doing fairly well on that on my own. I don't sleep in t-shirts, and while there's always some use for knit fabric scraps, I'm full up on those from all the dead pairs of shorts.

However, I do have a fairly ugly comforter that is nearing the end of its normal life. I also treasure that time in my life, and want a way to bring some of the artefacts of the time forward in a way that's friendly to my eventual plan of moving out of state. And I've got a sewing machine.

I grew up thinking about quilts as something that had to be carefully cut with precision tolerences and heavy equipment, and planned out on paper (later, computer), but the tradition of quilting has always included "woops, this dress is super worn out, but I love the fabric and it reminds me of good times", and "aaaaa I just need to cover this blanket in something".

So perhaps, in the coming weeks, I'll throw together a quilt, to remind me of the good times at Virtual Hammer, and something that can be folded up neatly in a corner of the closet without feeling like I'm wasting precious space, then spread on a bed to keep me warm.
azurelunatic: Teddybear that contains ethernet switch.  (teddyborg)
So yesterday's medical woe was all down to Kaiser (insurance company) shenanigans with Apria (CPAP provider). The name Kaiser transmitted is different from the name on my ID. Because I am heartily tired of being called *Miss* $WALLETNAME, I have asked Kaiser to stop calling me that, and start calling me Reverend. I didn't get ordained for nothing. Because Kaiser's computer system has no place for honorific, the way they treat it when it's causing the patient distress is to shove it in front of the first name. Therefore, I get prescriptions written to Rev $WALLETFIRSTNAME $WALLETLASTNAME. Clusterfuck.

Hopefully my new insurance card will be in the new name, for less confusion, when I hand it to people. My Top has grumbled about the insurance company making their Sub cry. My Top would like the insurance company to be better equipped to handle people with particular honorifics and atypical genders, please.

I would really like an iOS Dreamwidth client, one that was offline friendly, so I could compose while offline and waiting somewhere, and it would post automatically when I connected.

The morning started with some leisurely chatting with my partner, then progressed to Skype the instant it was helpful to do so. The connection was crappy, but sufficient, and I am coming to know my partner's face and body well enough that I can reconstruct the general visual from even a pixellated blur. (A misspent youth that didn't include enough anime to get *quite* that good...) Upon heading off for errands, we swapped over to phone as soon as I got out of the signal-eating garage. There we stayed, with a few intermissions, until their ex's arrival was imminent.

No two introverts can talk that long uninterrupted. Fortunately, that's not what we were doing. They were enjoying some well-earned video game time. I was doing various housework and re-arrangement of the bedside ecosystem to accommodate the new machinery and its power hookups. In addition to the CPAP I also now have a daylight lamp, one of the sorts that turns itself on at whatever hour you tell it to simulate dawn.

I am honestly not expecting the CPAP to rock my world and change my life. I know it must be doing some good, because after the first night I was even remotely willing to put the thing up my face again. The week I had the loaner did have some improvement in sleep, but it also had a steep drop in outdoor temperature. Post-surgery, I've been getting hot flashes; overheating was already a major cause of bad sleep, and hot flashes have not helped that. Previously I was able to make do with a fan pointed at me. Prior to the temperature drop, I've had to snuggle ice packs. There were a few other things that changed. I also have a very mild case (enough that the insurance does not cover the equipment, although I still got their rate in purchasing it). So I don't expect that this will change my life or rock my world.

I do expect that if I *still* have terrible sleep with great CPAP compliance data, they might take me seriously. Also, the lack of CPAP kept me from going home after surgery that could (technically) have been outpatient. The surgeon said that with a CPAP he'd have been okay with letting me go home once I was okay enough, but without that, he wanted to keep an eye on me and make sure I got enough oxygen and didn't stop breathing.

(My medication change last September did in fact change my life and rock my world; prior to that I was falling asleep in meetings and similar, regularly.)

Ev went back to New York today, which gets her out of range of her terrible mother. Though not before her mother imposed home cooking on her, with the expectation that she would take it back with her and eat it. This is one of the perils of being the American child of immigrants: if your parent is a *terrible* cook of their original culture, it's at least doubly terrible on account of the part where that perhaps isn't even food in the American paradigm. Her mother is a terrible cook. I gave her permission to throw it out. (Also, it delights me that she's got to the point where she often knows the best course of action on her own, and merely needs my validation to go ahead and proceed with that action.)

I will remember her stay here for weeks, if only by the fact that her hair has gotten all over everything. I know it's hers because it's pink. Mine is blue.
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
Saturday: very quiet, stayed at home, a certain amount of chat with partner.

Sunday: went to my aunt's to gossip and watch GBBO and Frasier. This was put on pause when Infamous Cousin, his girlfriend, and two friends showed up to pick up Boat.

Boat is a dog. She's a German Shepherd (perhaps a mix?) with one constantly upward-pointed ear and one ear that mostly flops but sometimes flaps and points when she's doing radar-ears about something. She is 70 pounds of complete love, love that wants to hug you without your permission and share your peanut butter. She's also dog-reactive, got separation anxiety, and has recently learned how to climb 8 foot wooden fences. (Her rear legs were off the ground and front legs were over the top, according to my aunt.)

My aunt very much misses the poodle.

Monday: also quiet, wrestling with sleep schedule and preparing for Fishie's visit and chatter with partner (always). Plus some undignified laboratory homework.

TMI )

Today: whooooo boy. Aforementioned lab drop-off, then I picked up [personal profile] quartzpebble and we went all the way out to the back of beyond to talk with the sleep neurologist who wasn't Dr. Asshole.

Appointment went okay. This doctor wasn't at all sure what to do with a patient whose depression is rapidly and *extremely* worsened by sleep deprivation (she inquired with some urgent concern whether I was feeling like that now, as she'd have to report that; I was not; she recommended that I see my psych crew to get that taken care of, which MISSED THE POINT ENTIRELY, that if I follow her instructions I'd probably need to be taken inpatient, and if I don't try to fuck with my sleep schedule, I'm pretty much all right except pretty fucking disabled due to the level of difficulty I have maintaining a modern business type schedule), and whose AD(H)D interferes with any and all "sleep hygiene" things that amount to "just get fantastically bored and you'll go to sleep", and whose budget does not presently include a CPAP. (Also, the mouth appliance thing costs more than a CPAP, and stuff in my mouth when I sleep is a hard limit after the misadventures of 1996/1997.) And there's some advice (not all of which can be followed and keep me sane), and there's a CBT class (cognitive behaviour therapy, not the other one), the contents of which I will be running past my Top and perhaps also my morail, as they are among the safeguards against me putting stuff in my head which needs to not be in there.

I only cried a little.

Soooooooo... compared to the appointment with Dr. Asshole, this went astonishingly well.


F and I had a few misadventures in finding a place for food. We settled on a diner. Lumpy's was closed already, since it was a Tuesday. Digger's was astonishingly difficult to find. I refueled, then we finally located it. The sign is not night-friendly, and very stylized.

Food was good. One of the great things about a diner that plays oldies and classic rock -- very little chance of getting the Wham!


The drive back was pretty much uneventful. Except now [personal profile] quartzpebble smells enough like Purple that I kept getting the "Oh, there's Purple!" pings in my brain. THIS IS WEIRD.

My partner called when I was on the way home, and we talked about stuff. Logistics for some things are difficult.


I talk to my (prescribing) psych tomorrow, and I'll probably poke Purple for dinner. Whee!
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
Dinner was just Purple and me, since his friend had the plague. We went for burgers.


Among other things, we discussed the difference between a douchebag and a douchebucket (unused solution vs. used) and whether a group of geese was a notch below or above actual pandemonium (literally all the demons). I voted that geese were probably worse. "Demons won't usually try to grab you by the junk and kick you in the shins with their wings."

Purple argued that since demons had wings, they just might.


I explained the way my partner and I get some of our communication done. We were on silent video chat and they were making a gesture that was meant to be sexy. I corrected the form. We can have educational discussion even without words.


We discussed how to get rosewater infused butter to try on an English muffin, which led to more silliness in the parking lot.


My partner called on the way home. The ex is still terrible. Whee.
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
My brain has been acting up on me, and last night was not the greatest of nights. (I was, in fact, reminded of 1999.)

Then I went off to dinner with Purple, who gently observed that I seemed to be about half-speed, then held my hand while we complained about politics. He had a touching level of faith in the unwillingness of Indiana parents to not ask for their children to be tortured in the name of Getting Straight. And I provided some thoughts on the torture facilities euphemistically known as "wilderness survival camps" and their ilk.

And I got back home, and found that my sweetie's dating site profiles very cheerfully mention a primary partner. Me. I am touched beyond belief.

So a mixed bag, but getting better.

💙💙💙
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
Today was just a kind of great day all around.


I got some lovely quality time with someone important, and acted as an inadvertent muse for some writing. :)


It turns out that someone I have long been acquainted with via the internet is now local, and we met up for hot chocolate and gossip at Borderlands. I look forward to many more beverages-gossip-and-writing meetups as long as we remain local!

It turns out that when I'm forced to choose between Foreigner and Rosemary and Rue, I will go with Bren. They're for different things, with me, and the application here felt more like that one.


TMI )


There was dinner with a friend who was in from out of town. Purple had offered that he might be available, but teased me that he didn't *have* to be available, if it was that kind of dinner.

It was the kind of dinner where things that had previously been hinted at were made somewhat less oblique. It was also the kind of dinner where my phone decided to malfunction by turning itself off repeatedly, in a way that made me despair for its actual lifespan. Fortunately, applying power made it behave itself better. (Even though the battery was showing 30-something percent.)

It took us a while to actually successfully wish each other goodnight, as additional topics of discussion kept occurring. But I was home at a sensible hour, and gave Dawn the promised update. (My primary partner got first update.)

And tomorrow will be General Togetherness! Should be fun.
azurelunatic: a sad ginger & white cat, face pressed on floor. Animated caption: Not even ten dead mice can fix THIS! (10 dead mice)
Had dinner with Purple & Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly last night. (She disdains labels, but there are a few that fit well.) The topics of discussion included politics. Purple is the sort who generally holds most politicians in a similar class of petty evil, but he is sufficiently appalled by the president-elect (and was sufficiently appalled before the election).


But, this being our group, some levity must come at some point or other.
Read more... )
azurelunatic: Prayer to the Bastard from Lois McMaster Bujold's Paladin of Souls (bastard)
... besides, of course, freaking out about the very real problems that come with the election results. (So far: likelihood of compromised health care, actual death(s) because of likelihood of compromised health care, likelihood of compromised sexual and reproductive health care for uterus-owners, actual increased racially charged violence, increased racially hateful verbal interactions including one of my friends-I-have-met-in-person being targeted, increased violence against same-sex couples, people who defy conservative gender norms...)

Ignoring my NaNo, somewhat guiltily. I will probably sit down with it sometime tomorrow.
Getting distracted, more so than usual.
Food, drink, meds, and exercise.
Tidying.
Talking to my baby girl, my other fishchildren, my morail, and others.
Retweeting things that seem helpful and important.
Retweeting cute animal pictures, because seriously.
Listening to "Anthem".
Listening to podcasts from September, because I'm not caught up.
Listening to the pre-election Rachel Maddow Show episodes that I hadn't heard, before facing the new ones.
Emailing Mama and Tay.
Spending time on IRC with the Freenode #dreamwidth (no politics) and #dreamwidth-bitch (politics allowed) crowds.
Spending time on IRC with #adventuresofstnono.
Communication with my Gentle Caller, via nearly every viable method of contact we have, because no matter what, we don't stop communicating. (Though we do take time out to do things like work, sleep, run errands, and watch things that make our brains feel less like used swiss cheese.)
Watching some of the Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency show. I think I was too young for the book when I read it, and/or on insufficient amounts of psychoactive drugs.
Talking about the fantastical cons of the concept of using dogecoin (for example) to fund California's affordable care plans, with Purple.
Testing exactly how waterproof our devices are, in Skype-showering with the Gentle Caller. (We have figured out the usual splash range of our respective showers, and leave the devices outside of that.)
Enjoying hot flashes. :\
Making social plans for Friday evening (Purple, and perhaps radius, yay!!!)
Making plans for the weekend (maybe a workshop in San Jose, and then likely dinner and helpfully mind-numbing video product with Purple)
Setting up Twitter list(s) for the friends I want to keep caught up with.
Poking at Facebook when I can, to maybe try and do some of the work of being human and vulnerable to people who want to love me but don't understand my pain.
Humming lullabies to sleeping friends.
Trying to fix my headset, which got a bit wrong with my phone. (I think the problem is my phone, but unpairing and re-pairing seems to have worked.)
Contemplating whether my phone is in fact in any fit state. (Parts of it keep crashing. It was not meant to run what I'm running on it.)
Wondering whether to apply for a 12 month contract locally. Because, 12 months.
Contemplating the minor physical indignity and tedium of dilators. (This is the OEM vagina that is not badly scarred experience of dilators. I hear that neovaginas are much less pleased by the experience.)
Sharing my experiences, generally, of hysterectomy.
Being generally and loudly fucking weird, in the way that only I can be.
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azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
Monday was a quiet day. I had dinner with Purple. It was unremarkable, other than the way I was a little sneezy.

A little sneezy turned into explosively sneezy and then my sinuses were an impassable wall of woe. I got approximately three hours sleep, out of 7+ horizontal.

Tuesday was not a great day. I realized that I should not be driving anywhere. I also had a care package to send, a package to pick up, and building plumbing problems. I made the best of it, and walked to the post office to grab a shipping box.

On the way there, the sleep department in Oakland called me to let me know that they saw that I had an appointment in SSF, did I want to take that appointment in Oakland too? I wasn't near the computer, so I had no idea; I wasn't expecting the call, and I had three hours of sleep. I had no idea, and very little vocabulary to put things together. I informed them to email me.

I sent a care package of old tech off to my Gentle Caller. The great thing about flat rate boxes is, it's the same price to send a small box with three bits of old electronics as it is to send that same box with three bits of old electronics, two plastic bracelets with a plastic recorder and a plastic maraca each, a baggie of glitter, and a handful of dark chocolate.

And that was only Tuesday. )
azurelunatic: A pajama-clad small child uses a rainbow-striped cruciform parachute. From illustration of "Go the Fuck to Sleep". (insomnia)
Thursday was kind of rough, because I didn't get enough sleep. Sweetie and I discussed the root cause, and I have standing instructions about the proper response to directives that fuck with my sleep. When safe and practical to do so, the proper response is: "Fuck off."

Friday, I had a doctor's appointment. The gyn appointment had two high blood pressure readings in a row, and that gets me sent to my GP for another blood pressure reading and maybe a lecture about salt. So I went in and got my blood pressure read by an assistant who (despite the helpful presence of an honorific in my name as displayed) managed to gender me. The first reading was high. The second reading was okay-ish. And that was it.

I had scheduled my day for a rough interaction with the medical establishment, so when I got home (early) I decided that I would call (eep, phone) the office with the sleep doctor, to request a re-match with a different doctor. (And I came home to a message from my friend phone, asking was I going to come down to the beer bash. I decided I would think about that after the sleep doctor interaction.)

I called and talked to the scheduling person, and explained that I had been referred to the sleep doctor, I had had an appointment, but I had had a bad experience in the appointment and ended it early. And I would like to talk to a different doctor.

The scheduling person apologized that I had had a bad experience, and asked me the nature of the bad experience.

I opened my mouth. No words came out.

One of the problems that I have with the phone, and one of the things that sort of drives Purple bats about talking on the phone with me, is that where a normal human might go "Uhhhh", I just go silent (unless my verbal output buffer glitches and I get the same word or syllable repeating). It's a problem because in the day of phones which helpfully silence background noise when they can, it sounds more or less equivalent to a dead line.

She started making the "Are you there" noises. I made "Yes I'm here" responses in response, and tried again to make words about my experience come out. "I, ... I, ... I, ... "

It went on like that for a while.

"No," I finally said.

It turns out that this doctor is the only doctor in the department. I had to say "And I don't want to see him ever again" fairly firmly, several times. This office could not refer me to a different location; I would have to go back to my GP for that one.

So I looked up and called the scheduling office of my GP. The person on *that* phone was nicely responsive to the "Reverend. I don't have a gender." which is becoming my standard response to any sort of gendered honorific. (Exception: Purple and the Gentle Caller are allowed.) He corrected himself and moved on. The desired situation was that my GP give me a referral to the sleep department in Oakland, and that any phone calls to discuss this should be scheduled via email. (We appear to be learning.) This guy was the most gender-aware of all the people there that I spoke to all day. Yay. (He was sorry that everyone else sucked.)

It turns out that attempting to explain out loud the sleep doctor related fuckery (especially because it's got such potential for gaslighting) threw me into a really vulnerable and unhappy state. I looked at phone's message and decided that no, really, I was not going to be up for beer bash, not with shenanigans after.

I fell over into bed a little, and my Gentle Caller offered empathy and snuggles via text. (Also various forms of Protective Anger, which from them is nicely reassuring.) [personal profile] quartzpebble has volunteered advocacy time for the next sleep appointment, because fuck so much of that noise. The Gentle Caller calmed me down enough to nap, and nap I did, and woke refreshed.

I then picked up [personal profile] tiferet, and we headed off to dinner (excellent fun) and thence to shopping.

It seems that if I am an Alpha, I have acquired a very *very* sensible Supervisor who reminds me that "Fuck off!" is a complete sentence non-compliance is a social skill. Also, [personal profile] sithjawa and [personal profile] inoru_no_hoshi were playing internet shopping games, where the object is to find the most ridiculous item in a given category. ...And this time, that category was dildoes.

Unfortunately, shopping was marred by technical fail, so we were out later than intended. Alas. But we did have fun, which was important. And the hypo-allergenic earring selection these days is much better than when I developed my metal allergies two decades ago.
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azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
Things which have happened recently, an incomplete list:

Saturday the 10th: Seanan book party, where I hung out with [personal profile] afuna beforehand, attended cheerfully with [personal profile] tiferet and [livejournal.com profile] geekhyena, and then had dinner with [personal profile] tiferet after. I hastened myself home after that, as there were many details about my post-surgery recovery that suddenly needed discussing with a friend.

Sunday the 11th: The LF's 20th birthday! Hooray!
Went over to [personal profile] quartzpebble's for dinner, gossip, and general funtimes. I washed some dishes while [personal profile] quartzpebble prepped dinner. There was gossip. Later, we played with makeup.

Saturday the 17th: [livejournal.com profile] theferrett book party, where I was late because BART was fucked up (construction on the train tracks between my station and downtown SF), but Fun Was Had. I ran into W, and realized that a) I had not been introduced to her husband, and b) I was already nodding-acquainted with him from previous events, many of them Seanan events. (He's the well-dressed guy with the neatly-wrapped long hair.) I caught her up on Major Life Events. I chatted with people! I said hello to [livejournal.com profile] theferrett; yay meeting people From The Internet! There was afterparty planned. We went to the same place that Tif and I had gone to the week previous. I wound up at The Fun Table, and met someone named Flitter and renewed my acquaintance with Z, who turned out to have some hobbies that I had not heretofore been aware of.

Sunday the 18th: some very nice conversation with a friend, and a certain amount of wrestling with technology to make it do what we wanted.

Yesterday:
Called Purple to check if dinner was a possibility; he had been running errands and staying home, and therefore dinner was not a great idea. I am fairly sure I got teased about my surgical recovery process.
Called Darkside to check in on things. Darkside has Opinions about Certain People, and they're not terribly printable, either. We also had a cheerfully smutty discussion in which he teased me about my surgical recovery. Darkside is the greatest.
Poked [personal profile] sithjawa about Matters Esoteric, in case Things Get Weird, Again. Also some other parties.

Today:

It turns out that when the topic of a 3D-printed, glow-in-the-dark clitoris comes up in IRC, you're going to get pinged, if the person who finds it is [personal profile] kaberett, and you and they have been engaging in This Sort of Thing As A Hobby for ... five years, now? Hilarity ensued.

Also in Matters Esoteric, it turns out that while I may be Somewhat Rusty, I still have a decent enough understanding of structure and purpose to take a rather baroque and Ceremonial sort of thing, inquire politely into local concepts, and hopefully deliver a viable alternative.

Instead of going to the happy hour I'd considered, I had dinner with Purple. Also with phone and phone's kid, who's now in Year 10 (Australian); we can use bad language in front of him because he's been in an Aussie boarding school and those will corrupt you right quick. He appears to be one of the local student techies, and thus following along quite firmly in the old man's path. He is one of the people who is *visibly* techie, so people keep poking him for tech help. He needs an apprentice. (He apparently already has one.)

Having been introduced to phone's favorite little place on California Avenue earlier in the summer by me, Purple now has it on the regular rotation. We're both in favor.

I spent a little less time chatting in the parking lot with Purple than I otherwise might have, and went home in a good mood that was somewhat marred by technology fail. (First, the cell signal was eaten by 280. Then, the watch-based dialer failed to load. *Then*, the headset had disconnected from the phone when the return call came. And once I had rebooted the headset, the watch dialer didn't do the thing again, either.)

But then I was home, and technology-related fail was less of a thing.


Some links:


http://www.redwombatstudio.com/portfolio/orcus1/orcus-chapter-one/
Fiction; contains some nice fun excessively controlling parental "love".

http://wiki.dreamwidth.net/wiki/index.php/Book_of_Wholesome_Hobbies
A perennial bit of ... inspiration, I guess?
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