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Everything posted by Teros

  1. So it's been a whole week. Checked with the Dr. and next appt is in Feb so I'll have to explain it all then. On the much much much better side of it: all of the issues have stopped after going a solid week to the gym every single day and not eating anything bad so this has to be overwhelmingly related to diet/exercise. I made some bean soup (which has turmeric so double-whammy for bad cholesterol) in the crockpot and I've been having the other food I cooked. This weekend I plan on looking at jobs again. Job searching I've found is VERY defeatist to me. Idk if other people feel this way but I just get so goddamn depressed after an hour of searching. Gym opens at 7am and it's 5:45 right now so my plan today is to hit the gym in an hour, head home and eat some bean soup or the cabbage sausage slaw or turkey spinach meatsauce and spaghetti squash. Then job hunting and laundry/dishes.
  2. I've been struggling for long than I care to even bring up. The holidays (from Halloween-New Years) are always difficult, made especially so with my sister still battling cancer and that being all the family I have (her doofus husband doesn't count). Well I was doing what I normally do every year: try to minimize the junk food eating and failing. Yes, eating 6 fun-size candies is not as bad as eating 20, but when it keeps happening, it still adds up. At some point, there has to be a breaking point for letting junk food slide. I've hit that breaking point. As titled for this thread, I had a health scare. For about 2.5 weeks, I was getting a weird stress in my chest. Tightness, and a fluttering feeling like something was wrong. It would come and go - maybe 5 minutes here or there - and then go away. Enough to make me nervous but not enough to make me say, 'I need to go to the hospital' or something. I told myself in early November that it's probably bad cholesterol creeping up on me. The junk food I'm eating adding up and adding up. And after the holidays, I'll go back to being strict (or at least trying and failing miserably for yet another year). That was my thought: at least until Thanksgiving. Around 3am, I woke up (as I seem to usually do) and there was more of that chest tightness. Only this time, the 5-ish minutes didn't have it go away. It turned into 20 minutes, to an hour, and *then* started to fade away. I sat there in the living room just playing Skyrim and trying to take deep breaths. Panicking won't make it *better* so just stay calm and wait it out for a few minutes. Like I said, I kept waiting, and waiting, until I realized how long it took for this feeling to go away. Then in the early hours (8am-ish?) I get in an argument with a lady-friend. The extremely uncomfortable tightness comes back again. It sticks around for another 30 minutes and then fades a bit. I spent the rest of the day with my sister and the chest pain kept coming and going. I started to lose track, and it felt like half of the entire day was spent trying to stay calm, rubbing my chest, and focusing on other things. Then it just stuck around. Not a 30-minute episode or an hour, but it was just my *default* feeling. I masked how scared I was around my sister. She's going through enough. But by the end of the day, when I was having trouble sleeping, I knew this was my breaking point. I don't want to die of a heart attack. For the past few days now, I've made a commitment to go to the gym every single day. Now 6 days in and the chest issues are going away more and more. Hour-long painful feelings a couple times a day to 30-minute painful feelings. To 10 minute bursts and now to a 1 or 2 minutes throughout the day (as of this writing, it's almost noon and I've felt it for a 30 seconds and then it went away). This challenge, I don't have a list of things to get done: I just want to not die. I'm staying consistent. I want to post on here as much as possible. I'm going to the gym as much as possible (personal trainer with weight lifting 3x a week and I hit the elliptical for 30 minutes the other 4 days). I'm eating whole30 as much as possible. And regarding the eating: I'm going back to trying to add more beans and less meat to my macros. If I can swap it to about half beans then I think I'll be in pretty good standing. I'm also posting this here so I don't forget: The only thing on the left-hand side that I'm eating currently is processed meats because I still have some deli meat but I'm planning on not getting anymore after the next food shopping. For instance, I have some deli ham but I'm going to cube it up and cook it in the crockpot with a ton of beans for a ham and bean soup. For the 2nd picture, I have the cardio 4x a week, #2 is the same as the above photo, I think I hate salmon so I'm just not going to do that one. I'm doing #4 and for #5, I have turmeric so maybe I'll throw that in the ham and bean soup. 6 psyllium husk? Uh, Idk, maybe I'll do that? I'll see how I'm doing. This week I made some ground turkey with a bag of spinach, container of mushrooms, tomato sauce, and a baked spaghetti squash and portioned all that out. I also cooked some pork with a half a head of cabbage, onions, and shredded carrots. I'll have some sweet potato with this meat-cabbage hash. Once there is room in the fridge, I'll attempt a ham and bean soup with the turmeric. Besides all this health stuff is: job searching. Christ, I NEED there to be something open that lets me do fee-for-service for a few hours. I'll take 5 clients a week if that's all anyone can offer. Just something to get out of my current situation.
  3. I made a necro before I got the aniversary edition and hated it, but there's supposed to be zombies and better summonables so I'll have to revisit it again. I wanted to make a vampire argonian because of the skintone change that happens looks super cool so maybe I'll combine those ideas together and have a vamp/necro argonian.
  4. The challenge is going along pretty well. I've been still hitting the gym 3x a week with my trainer. I'm eating pretty well and not binge-eating any crap. It's been a lot of Skyrim+Work+Workouts and that's about it. I didn't even realize Halloween was happening until the day before. I found out yesterday that Thanksgiving is NEXT WEEK. The season is sort of just flying by. Still looking for a better job. I'm hoping to find something before the end of the year. If I see nothing in another week, I'm going to see what strings I can pull. I like creating character ideas and I had one for an Orc that was *too* much of an Orc and kills his father when challenging him for the town's leadership but sort of....gets swept up in his bloodlust and ends up murdering his entire tribe. Now prowls the wilderness and kills anyone who crosses paths with him (and he has a 2 handed warhammer). My current three characters I'm loving. I might end up doing a little story write-up. I've found that the more I learn about the lore, the more I have ideas which then gets the creative juices going. It makes me miss my book-writing.
  5. Apparently the quality/type matters so idk what I'm looking for when it comes to tofu. The few times I had it, it was.....spongy and not really a fan. But I'm assuming that can be tweaked since I never cooked it myself. Well I have it on the Switch - so NO mods. However, Anniversary Edition was just released last week (what are the odds I start playing this game and then the ultimate edition comes out days later to upgrade?) If I could have a woman dress up in the Saints armor...... What characters/builds do you like? I have a bunch of ideas but idk if they are viable. I didn't want to just google search builds and copy/paste it, but rather create some cool thematic stuff. Like once I found the Ring of Namira, my instant thought was: I was like, 'Ok.... I want to make a Guy Fieri-based character that is a cannibal and thinks that eating people is like a ticket to Flavortown.' What makes sense if I had a murderous cannibal chef? Well, he would use base 0 defense clothes so I could wear a chef outfit. Then I could wear the ring of namira. I could have Eola as my follower. I would want to do a lot of 'cooking' of my 'food', i.e. Destruction magic: Fire. He would need to either chop it up or tenderize the meat, so one-handed mastery of either an axe or a mace. Also: vampire seems to fit the bill. So could Skyrim Guy Fieri work? Thoughts? I also think that illusion magic with that calm or berzerk magic would be sweet if I combined that with conjure sword to make a jedi-kinda character. Jedi tricks like that don't seem very.....Sith though, so if I made a Sith, I'd keep the conjure sword but instead of illusion magic, clearly Destruction: Lightning is the way to go. These are just some of the ideas I have. There's like 8 other concepts on my phone so I could post them What's your most favorite/fun character and do you have a backstory type of thing like with these ideas I'm kicking around? I feel like the more personality to the character, the more I'll invest and have an interesting playstyle for to make multiple playthroughs unique. Thankee. And happy soon-to-be birthday --- So some updates as to what's happening (besides my Skyrim rambling above). Job front - still looking. It's a pain in the ass that they want an LICSW but there aren't jobs that have an LCSW....because if I get that job, I can eventually get the hours and be certified to *become* an LICSW. Ugh. Not giving up - just need to keep plugging away. All I need is 1 halfway decent job that gives me accreddited hours and to stick with it for a bit and then I have unlimited possibilities after my LICSW cert. Workouts - I told my trainer like 2 weeks ago about how things needed more structure and it's been smooth sailing since. I bust my ass Monday, Wednesday, Friday. If I'm feeling really ambitious, I'll do some cardio on the weekend too, but it's not needed; as I need to schedule rest so I don't run myself into the ground. It's great to be all 'BEAST MODE FUCK YES ARRRRGH!' but it's pointless when workouts and sleep suffer and leads to injury. Think.....a slightly tamed monster. Eating - Great. My 'slip up' of some popcorn is nothing compared to the shovels of candy I was having. I feel completely on track and the occasional OJ/fruit juice and extra slice of cheese isn't going to kill me. It feels like I'm hovering around 95% perfect and as long as I'm seeing results, I'm fine with that. I also emailed my deitician and the fact she's NEVER available and seeing her once every 2 months does jack shit. I told her that I need accountability and to get weighed often. Was I able to go and use their scale at the facility? After a little chat - it's doable. So every other Friday morning, I'm able to walk into the dr office and weigh myself. Oh, I also made some great food this week. 1) Saag paneer. I added a bunch of asparagus to it and blended it all to make a thick creamy spinach-veggy spread and I cooked up some paneer squares. 2) BEANS. Putting it here in case I forget: 6 strips of bacon, 2 cans of black beans (drained), 1 can of corn, garlic powder, cajun seasoning. It was *chef's kiss* 3) I also made chicken tikka masala with a bunch of peppers and onions mixed in which is pretty damn good too. I also finished up some onion and mushroom stir fry with garlic and balsamic vingar, along with turkey burgers and swiss cheese. Fucking noms.
  6. A job makes all the difference, man. I know that with the crappy one I'm at, the inconsistency and uncertainty definitely is taking a toll (luckily I didn't bail on the prior part time job so I still have flexibility). Congrats man. I feel like I would be too tired if I had to cook the night before. This weekend, I made some cajun blackbeans with corn and a couple strips of bacon (that's 4 meals' worth), a bunch of tikka masala (4 meals) and some saag paneer (3+? meals) All the bowls in a stack in the fridge gives me peace of mind. Good to see ya here.
  7. So with this new job being a goddamn mess, last challenge I think I posted twice and it was basically about that. I'm currently job-hunting to find a replacement for this anxiety-inducing job. One thing I've been doing a lot is playing Skyrim. When I tried it years ago, I was bored and got lost and frustrated. (Now I know it was because I was at the college of winterhold and was lost in the dark without the magelight spell. No wonder old-me thought the game sucked). Anyways I got it on consoles and have fallen in love with it so I figured I would make a challenge that was Skyrim-based. Goal 1: New Job so I have some coin. Apply to jobs each week or follow up on emails. Goal 2: Workouts I had a sit-down chat with my personal trainer and explained about a week ago, that I'm not someone who is going to show up and fuck around for a couple weeks, get bored, and then leave. I'm not a new years resolution person who wants to drop a few pounds and then quits. I told her that I'm here for the long haul - that I plan on doing this shit for at least a year with this schedule we have figured out. I also told her that the workouts we have planned aren't really planned....they're sort of all over the map. I lit a fire under her ass and I think because she knows I'm serious, now *she* is being serious. We reworked the entire workout plan and now I have a core workout list that I pick from, and then a Monday, Wednesday, and Friday workout. So I'll do my Monday workout and then do my core round-robin stuff. Etc. I'm aiming to not miss a single workout. Goal 3: Fix the eating. I've been stress eating because of the job. I can't just give myself a blank check for eating to deal with this, though. I have my eating plan and it is as such: Meal 1: 8oz protein/2 cup veg (850 cal) Meal 2: 8oz protein/2 cup veg (850 cal) Yogurt/Rx Bar/Mush (200 cal) 2 Fruit/1 banumnum (200 cal) 7 fat (200 cal) 2 carbs like a wrap, or a single po-tay-to (200) 850+850+200+200+200+200 = 2500. This is what I was doing and lost 60 pounds so this is what I want to get back to. That protein as well - I'm slowly converting it to more protein sources. i.e. BEANS. I've been reading a book called 'How not to Diet'. It says a lot of stuff I knew: the whole global food conspiracy stuff and what works and what doesn't. And I'm trying to have less meat and more veg protein. This also ends up lowering my calories by a lot if you see that basically 1/3 of all my calories for the day comes from chicken/beef/pork. 1 can of goya beans is 8oz which means as long as I use 1 can a week in my batch cooking, I'm replacing one of my 14 protein meals a week with a veggy option. I'm hoping next challenge I swap 1 more. And next challenge 1 more. I don't have an ultimate goal here, but I'm shooting for like half of my protein to come from non-meat. I'll see. That's it for now. Those 3 things. Every time I've added a posting or creative goal I fail it because I put too much pressure on myself so I'm just ditching them and going to try and see how that works out.
  8. So lots of updates coming. For #1 - I was able to get information about the insurance coverage that is going on (and is what was making so stressed the fuck out). I know which people I can work with (after a fucking MONTH) and I'll start building a client list next Tuesday. However, an old school-friend who I ended up shadowing at this job (Andy) has proposed I take *his* clients as well. There's 6-10 of them, whereas right now I'm getting my feet wet at this nursing home with 3-6 in the mornings. Seeing as how I *JUST* got a grip on what I'm doing at my nursing home, the thought of getting a second nursing home seems daunting. However, if I go through my list of intake and it turns out I'm only seeing, say, 3 clients and I can get those all done in like 2 hours in the morning - then it's totally viable to take on another 7-ish. I'm playing it by ear. I want to see how I feel after this Tuesday and then get back with him about it. Another interesting thing that idk if I should even delve into right now is the fact that the nursing home care therapist 'competition' has contacted me. I thought I did something wrong because a message was left for me saying they were from *competition* and wanted to ask me a few questions. Uh oh. +Add Stress+. I contact the owner of my agency and say *competition* has called me and I was just curious about what it could be about or if there was something wrong. She gave me a statement to tell them and if they have any questions, talk to HER. Ok. Fine. I take a few deep breaths (after a couple of days of stalling and perhaps eating badly because stress....) and call back this person. I didn't know what they wanted. It was a middle-man that just wanted to coordinate care, because a recurring problem has been *my* agency is working with *his* agency's clients and then giving conflicting information in the insurance notes. For instance, one of *his* agency might do an evaluation and diagnose the person as needing some serious help - major depressive disorder, ptsd from being a war vet, whatever. But then *my* agency comes in and does and eval and says that the client is totally fine and doesn't need treatment. It's putting him in a bad situation because we shouldn't even really be seeing the same clients: *my* agency has it's list. *his* agency has their own. But that isn't what is happening and behind-the-scenes, the insurance companies and middle-men are getting all fucked up. So I have a chat with this guy for about an hour and find this out. I also find out that my number isn't right on the list of contacts. And it's not 1 digit off: not a single thing is right, even the area code. He explains that they are a small local company and just want to see if there is a way for *my* agency and *their* agency to coordinate care so this doesn't keep happening. Now's the time, I parrot the statement that the COO told me to say. His response? Along the lines of, "Yeah I have her information. I try contacting her and get nowhere. And I was really hoping to talk to something a big lower on the totem pole who actually sees the clients. And I've tried talking to multiple people at the mid-level at your company and by the time I get their information, they are already fired or quit." This smells bad. Real bad. And I have some thinking to do. Deep dive. So I think back to my first day and how I met with the big COO of the company and I overhead how she was telling a nurse how *other* agency doesn't show up or do anything and is all shit-talking them. I'm starting to wonder if my phone number was wrong on the site *intentionally* so that was *competitor* agency wouldn't be able to talk to me. The thing is, I think the competitor may be right. Since day one, I've had bad juju vibes about this place. It gave me the feeling of an internship I did for 3 months and didn't even put on my goddamn resume because of how worthless it was. Upstart ambitious woman duo decides there is a goldmine of money to be made by starting a company and expands massively, quickly. While the QUANTITY of the company grows, the QUALITY goes down. I get texts every couple days from the COO in a group chat, hyping everyone and the company up. We're growing so fast and it's because of YOU GUYS! You're all GREAT! Superstars! We have contracts for 5 new homes and are looking for more people to work them! Meanwhile it took a fucking month to even know what insurances I work with and I only had 3 clients on Tuesday. You shitting me? They promise big money - like 400 bucks a day. And don't get me wrong, my $240 in a couple hours of work one day is nice and all; but things feel..... off. It's hard to exactly put my finger on it. Like I said, it's a vibe I'm getting. She's so hyped about her precious company but I see the cracks in it: the 12 people I've had to talk to. The three broken trainings. Multiple accounts and passwords. Nothing that I've said working. And that loops back to the wrong phone number and the trash-talking she was doing at the nursing home. The guy at *other* agency was telling me it was 40 workers total just trying to do their best and all they want is to try and talk to their competitor about at least being on the same page. Now the official statement of 'anything else, talk to her' thing gets added in. I feel like *my* agency is the ambitious big fish just gulping down and bullying its way into the market, but at the cost of sacrificing quality. I don't want to be part of that sitaution. It's like.... It's like Game of Thrones and I found out I'm on Team Lannister when I'm talking to *other* agency Team Stark. And I'm not liking that I'm on Team Lannister. Or maybe I'm just Ned and I'm finding I'm in the middle of some sort of power struggle and I just want to do the right thing. Does *other* agency make shit up? They trying to sabotage *my* agency from within and they aren't getting anywhere? Or do they really have best intentions? I'd like to believe that they are good guys - that in the grand scheme of things: I just want to be a therapist and help people and if that means talking to my 'rival' to make sure the clients are taken care of properly, that seems like the right thing to do. But are there consequences to this? *sigh* That's Part 1 of the challenge. Part 2: I had my eval last Thursday. I passed, I guess or whatever. They said my file would stay open for 6 weeks if my back is aggravated more. But I don't feel fixed: I just feel like there's less pain and I have better mobility. I'm not exactly sure *what* I should feel when I'm *done* or maybe there is no such thing as 'done' with physio rehab? Anyways, I went to the gym the next morning and talked to the owner and explained that I wanted to see that personal trainer about a schedule. I met with Mack The Trainer and we had an appointment set for Wednesday, Sept 28. Ya know, 2 days ago. Fast-forward to Wednesday and I brought all my physio papers in. I told her prior about my lardosis/anterior pelvic tilt so while I want to lost weight and build muscle yadda yadda, the focus still needs to be the lower back and abs. She had a template for what to do and we compared notes on Wednesday for about 45 min. She made some tweaks and photocopied what she thought would work moving forward. So, Monday / Wednesday / Friday I have my workouts. There is a 'core/abs' block that I will do every day. Then there are 5 other workout blocks. I basically just pick something else to pair with my core block. So 'core block' + 'arms block' on Monday. Then Wednesday is 'core block'+ 'legs block' or whatever I'm feeling. As long as I'm hitting core block + another from the list, I'm good. And then cardio after that if I'm up for it (or I might just do cardio on the weekends or Thursdays. Idk, being forced to do cardio is 'meh ' for me, but obligated to do my core workout is the goal here. Cardio is like.... gravy. On a cake. Or on meatloaf or something. Whatever. Hot fudge is just the chocolate gravy of a sundae, ya know? Today was just core and getting a feel for it. Monday will be core+ whatever else. Probably arms. I feel flabby and want to do that next. For the record, Dead Bugs fucking suck as an exercise. That's all for this section. Part 3: Met with Gina. I tried to tweak macros. I'm going to be adding a can of beans a week to replace 2 of my protein meals. So my meals are set up as 8oz of meat measured out and then veggies. Then a couple carbs, fruit, and a yogurt. I'll be replacing 2 meals a week with beans. Made a can of black beans and added some Cajun spice mix, turmeric, chili powder, garlic, and pepper. Ate it today after my trainer workout and it was pretty good. Booking in advance with Gina ISN'T happening. She's booked up until mid-December so the 2 meetings I have are gonna be it. I'm going to call her and see if I can come into the office once a week to do a weigh-in. Not an actual appointment but a 3 minute stop-by to try and keep track of how I'm doing and also keep me accountable. I'll be making that call this weekend and see how it works out. As for stress-eating options: I have grapes, apple cider, rx bars, and some plums. While slamming a glass of juice isn't good for me, it beats stress eating and binge-eating 12 snickers. Small wins. As I ween off of the junk of stress eating, I'll taper off the cider/juice and then have just fruit. Part 4: Been reading so that's done. Amazing to not have an essay to right per goal. Part 5: Clipped a bunch of minis the past week. They look SO much better without the weird hair-spike-manes on the back and loincloth crap. I'm thinking next is to make 4 trial units with milliputt to see which concept design I like more. That's when I'll be uploading some pictures of the progress. The commission stuff - I didn't do. I gotta print that shit out. Part 6: I think I've already posted more this challenge just by saying something twice. So if I can double or triple that, I'll be good. Then double/triple that next challenge until I feel better. Honestly, the biggest issue is this new job. It's thrown me all out of whack and it makes me feel like a failure. I know I know, I don't need anyone quoting the last sentence and saying I'm trying and that counts: It still FEELS like I'm fucking up and I want to be better than this. I just need to lid on Part #1 and the other things will fall into place and be better and better.
  9. Hey. Finally got my account to work. I didn't forget about the challenge: the new work computer I bought (and am currently using) has been a pain in my ass and my old laptop that I've been using for some 7-8 years is broken in like four different ways. All my account info lost and trying to retrace my steps with account linked to another account to a password for another account has been a fucking hassle. Anyways, I'm here for the challenge but I need to do something different. The new job has brought with it an assload of anxiety. Granted, I make more money in one day than I did in a week and a half at my prior job - but that's exactly the point: I need to take care of my mental and physical health EVEN MORE so I can stay on top of the new job. With that, my challenge: 1) Sorting - This is a multi-part goal because it encompasses so much. I have files everywhere. Paperwork strewn about the dining room table and in backpacks. About 12 different work contact threads on my phone. And multiple updates and changes I have to do with apps and account. The job itself isn't hard: it's all this b.s. on the back-end. So, I need to do the following: -Go through my old computer bookmarks (this alone is gonna take like 12+ hours) -Collect all my emails/accounts (nonwork) -Collect all my emails/accounts (work) -Sort through and write up a work guide for intakes and progress notes -Stay on top of printing out forms/files -Check work email twice a week -Organize all work papers -Follow up with Dio text-thread on the insurance coverage information -Copy files off of broken laptop -Wipe out old laptop -Put files back on (less) broken laptop The bulk of the challenge is related to this one. However, there's more. 2) Exercise - another multi-parter with lists of things to do: -Have final eval Thursday for physio -Build physio routine -DO physio routine 3x week -Contact Mack about fitness plan -Schedule time(s) to work with Mack for workout/physio combo -Do workout routine (maybe infused with physio) 3x week 3) Eating - Jesus, another multi-parter: -After final eval for physio, contact Gina about weigh-ins -Build 1-2 week weigh-ins. Book 3 months in advance -Batch cook/measure every week -During Gina appointment, see about rebuilding macros to coincide with the book I'm reading -Have built-in stress-eating options available (Apple juice, grapes, protein bread and chocolate yogurt, rx bars) 4) Reading - Read 'How Not To Diet' and 'DSM-IV' books 3x a week. -Week 1 -Week 2 -Week 3 -Week 4 -Week 5 5) Art- Multiiiiii-parter: -Print out transfer sheets for painting comission -Finish painting lines and wash for painting comission -Sell off painting comission and never do another comission again -Finalize idea for army (Tarkatan Vs Falmer) -Clip minis -Sand minis -Milliputt minis -Paint minis 6) NF - Try to actually post on here and not fall apart.
  10. Lol Actually it's because I was on the fast-track to getting one of these things completed about 4 months EARLY. So for the pat 2 weeks I've been flooded with options for new jobs. Some of them making money I didn't think was actually even possible. Well the contract is getting signed today - Guess who's got a new job .... http://plattitudes.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/kelso-scrubs.jpg For over 10 years, I've been working at a crappy ass supermarket. I dealt with it because even though the pay was total shit, it was flexible hours and easy. I could shut my brain off and just do what I had to do. I wasn't being supervised and could work an much or as little as I wanted to. It fit while I was getting my bachelor's degree and then my master's degree. I picked up another part time job while in school through an internship and I was working 2 jobs, interning, evening classes, and then all the homework bullshit. After my mom died (right before covid) I was an emotional mess and felt lost. I graduated but still didn't feel 'ready' to start. Then my sister getting cancer and uncle having heart and liver issues meant my entire family was on the chopping block in a matter of 2ish years. I didn't feel like it was right to jump into being a counselor when my *own* mental health was a shitshow. But my sister is stabilized. My uncle got 3 stents put in and is on a few meds. And I hit two awesome weightloss goals so it felt like the past couple weeks were the time to pull the trigger and get in the field. And BOY OH BOY am I in the field. After lots of phone tag and reading over contracts and such, I've settled on a place. I'll be doing therapy at a nursing home. Is it my dream job? No. But that can only happen AFTER I get hours of fieldwork and then take/pass the LI exam and become a professional therapist with his own private practice. What this is - is a baby step. A very....lucrative baby step. A single 5-hour shift at a nursing home and doing intakes/therapy will net me: $350+. Yes. 5 hours. $350 bucks. That's $70 fucking dollars an hour. It's been a week of talks and my brain still can't wrap around this. Ok, please put this is perspective. I work at a market. A MARKET. And I make $14.80 an hour. If I work 23 hours a week, I make $340.40. That's still LESS than 5 hours at this new job. I've been living off scraps for years while I went through school and dealt with my own mental health shit and now that things are looking good... I'm making more than 4 times the money per hour? Holy Jesus, what on earth.... When I was in school, I talked to others in the field and they were saying that's $33/hour is pretty good and I was totally on board for that. $33 is more than double my crap-ass $14 so I'm on board for that. Once in the private practice world, you make about $60/hour/client and so I was figuring a solid 20-hour work-week would have me living comfy cozy but this gig surpassed even THAT. So this is a huge deal for me. Life-changing. I didn't take this job lightly and I talked to a few people about future plans because there is 1 issue I have with it: The hours with the clients are considered intakes and not actual sessions, therefore the hours I work do NOT count towards my hours needed for the LICSW license. This is a huge bummer but honestly, with the nature of the work (I shadowed and it seems pretty damn easy) and the pay, it's just an obstacle I'll work around. This is the plan moving forward: I talked to someone at Brown University while looking at jobs. They had a job as an interventionist for people who binge eat and smoke. Perfect. Up my alley. However the position was filled before they saw my resume. I was told there would be another interventionist gig that will open up at the end of the year and that I totally should apply for it and I will (the hours WILL count towards my LICSW hours). Between Now-December, I'm going to keep the market job for a couple hours. I'm telling them that I have another job and that I have to cut back, but can still work a little for them doing rotation. This might seem stupid, after all the harping I made about the $ difference and how I'm doing more meaningful work at this new job. It's a union job and if I were to ditch today, I'd be walking away from 4 weeks of paid vacation, 4 personal days, and sick time. However, it is a safety net. What happens if 2 months from now, the new job isn't feeling right? What if I come home stressed and bring my work home with me? Yeah, the pay is insane but at what *mental* cost? Keeping 1 foot in the supermarket door means if I really need to, I can ditch this new job and go back to the market. Yeah, 23 hours=5 hours will hurt like a s.o.b. but I'll get by (I've been doing it so far) and it beats having no job while I search for a while. Who knows: maybe I got REALLY fucking lucky and next time I start looking, it takes a couple months before something reasonable pops up. The new job also allows me to work the hours I want to work, so there's really no drawback here. I could do a single 5-hour shift and then pick up any market hours I want on the side. New Years: Re-evaluate the market day/ nursing home jobs. I want those LICSW hours so I'll need to pick something else up eventually. Apply for the Interventionist job that I missed out on. Or maybe I'll find something solid that I can do part-time that counts towards my LICSW hours. Either way, come new years, I'll pick up a new part time LICSW-based job and then drop the supermarket job. By New Years I'll either be doing Nursing Home part-time and Interventionist part-time, OR Nursing Home part-time and *Other LICSW job* part time. Then over 2023, I'll start accruing those LICSW hours. Once I have 500-ish hours (which, let's say I do 1 nursing home shift and 20 LICSW hours, that'll be 6 months from now), I'll start studying for the LICSW license little by little. Instead of being swamped and feeling over my head for the exam, I want to start EARLY and go SLOWLY. Really absorb the material, ya know? Then once I have all my hours, I can take the LICSW and do my own contract work. Maybe do private practice 3 days a week and then nursing home/other fee-for-serivce job 2x a week and be able to make damn good money doing it. There's another wrinkle in this. Let's say I get the Brown Uni interventionist job - whose to say that isn't my ticket into being hired full time there. If that's the case, the Nursing Home job hours can be split up. It can also be done on weekends. So I could do 2 evenings, 3-hour shifts for nursing home job, and then fulltime at Brown doing therapy. After 6 months, you can take classes for free there and then I could see about getting a FREE DOCTORATE. Dr Teros. That sounds impressive. Very nice. And I mean, I wouldn't be struggling to get a doctorate because I need a job - I'll already have a solid one in my field that will make good money. The doctorate will just be for kicks. For funsies. Think about how when you are FORCED to learn, it's a pain in the ass. But when you WANT to learn something, it's cool. I'll be able to take my time with 1-2 classes per term and slowly get another degree. They have a degree in neuro-science. Something like neurobiology. However, I'm talking about too many hypotheticals: the point here is I'll do 1 or 2 shifts at this nursing home and make solid money, keep the market around for a couple hours as a back-up (although totally shitty) plan. And at the end of the year, swap the market for something that gives me LICSW hours and I'm solid. So: What about everything else? While this is a HUGE fucking deal for me, what about the rest of my challenge? 1) I've been doing my physio. I've been doing so well that there are a lot of things that are changing in my day to day. For instance, when I did food shopping, I always hunched and leaned on the carriage like I was Larry King. When I tried doing that, it hurt. It didn't feel right. My improved posture meant that hunched and leaning was uncomfortable and now I stand up straight and push the carriage since *that* is more comfy now. I can't do that side-lounge on the couch anymore because it feels like it pinches a nerve and doesn't feel right. Now I sit up straight with my legs out. I'm now taller than a ladyfriend that I spend time with whereas before I was shorter. Yes, I gained at least an inch of height in the past month because of the work I'm putting in. Two days ago I realized that sitting cross-legged is actually kind of comfortable. Just two months ago, the thought of trying to sit like that would put me in excruciating pain. I'm guessing it's the back rehab combined with losing weight. The most recent is my sleeping. I've been a side-sleeper for like....30 years or whatever. And now it hurts my lower back. I can feel my stomach pulling down/away and then that pulls on my lower back. I'm experimenting with sleeping on my back but it's been weird and difficult. 2) Workouts - Fuck yes I've been hitting them. I'm rocking about 600-700 cals burned on the elliptical. I was doing level 16 resistance for quite a while but I'm getting comfortable putting it on 18-20 the entire 45-50 minute workout. (It maxes out at 25 and I've experimented with it and can do that for a minute or two at a time). 3) 2400 Cal - I have bowls in the fridge with: 1) black beans, eggs, and cajun seasoning. 2) chicken thighs with tomato sauce. 3) pulled pork. Along with eating 1-2 head of broccoli, half-head of cauliflower, 4 yellow squash, and a tub of coleslaw with carrots in it. And I'll be making HUNGARIAN MEATLOAF once I finish up that previous food. Oh, I also made PROTEIN BANANA BREAD. And it's fucking amazing. Blue Bonnet protein powder: bless you and your deliciousness. 5+6) This is where I've been hurting. Mostly it's because I've been so busy with 1, 2, 3, and now solidifying #4. I mean, I do a 6 hour day and then visit with my sister for an hour, then do physical therapy for about an hour, then I go home and eat breakfast (now at almost 3pm), and then make phone calls and play phone tag with people and other paperwork. Eat dinner and watch tv to pass out on the couch. Rinse and repeat. But now I'll be working less hours and making more money, and the paperwork/training stuff will be over in another week and a half so then I can take care of #5 and #6. I have to be easy on myself.
  11. I've had back issues for well over 10 years and just last week, I got coverage and I'm able to get physical therapy. So now starts the long and painful process of healing myself and feeling like a normal human being instead of a broken mess. 1) Physical Therapy 6x week - I have been booked for physio on Monday/Wednesday/Friday. I was told that I have to do a packet of a few other stretches and exercises on Sunday/Tuesday/Thursday. Saturday is my only rest day because if I slack a couple days in a row, I'll go backward with my progress. 2) Workouts 3x week - I've been hitting cardio pretty hard recently since I can't do squats, and I am trying to stay on top of lifting weights (tricep/bicep/pushups/rows). I'm hitting the gym and pushing some iron 3x a week. 3) Hitting that 2400 cal - Every day tracking calories and not going overboard. It's becoming routine but there are still times that I start to slip off. My biggest issue is rebounding before I have any type of binge. I'm sticking to 99% whole 30 and I want to keep this streak going until at LEAST Halloween. 4) Job Hunt - I'm sick of my job and I'm ready to make the move. I want to start helping people and making a fat stack of cash. I'm going to do resumes/cover letters every week. I have a feeling this process will take more than one challenge to complete but as I'm losing weight, it just means I'll look better and better before I get some new job clothes-hunting. 5) Posting - Trying to post twice a week on here and also check in with a bunch of people twice a week. 6) Art - Last challenge I had a 'creative crisis' in that there were too many ideas and too many armies to make to the point that I would be painting miniatures until I was fucking 80 years old so I've been streamlining what art I actually want to do. I thought long and hard about the question, "Why army would be FUN to work on?" Not just, "I can make this, that, and this other thing". For instance, could I make vampire demons and ghouls work in a sci-fi setting? Yes. But would the process of making and painting that army be FUN? No so much. In much the same way I'm going back to basics with my stretching/physio, I'm also going back to basics with my army/creative stuff. I want to work on casting/building/painting an army thing once a week and upload a progress pic on here.
  12. I wrapped up the veggies with chicken wire and things started growing again. Good....good. Until yesterday, when all the yellow flowers on the squash were gone and all the green tomatoes came in. This fucking ass ate everything AGAIN. I inspected the garden and the chicken wire was lifted up less than an inch when it *was* in the dirt. This whole summer of trying to grow things has been a complete waste of time and money. Thanks, asshole rabbit. Other things for the challenge that I've been doing: 1) Defective Job - I've applied to multiple jobs and nothing has turned out yet, sadly. 2) Defective Eating - This is 100% on point. Challenge is about to end and I'm eating in my calorie window and with zero binges. I have my dietician appointment next Friday but I ended up seeing my dr and was weighed there (more on that in a sec) and I was weighed in: Down 50 pounds total. I just need to stick with what is working and not slide backwards. 3) Defective Internetting - This has been a mixed result I guess. I'm not sitting in front of a computer as much. I work more hours so I have a few extra bucks and then I get some stuff on ebay so since I'm working more, I'm technically doing less internetting. Also with keeping on top of my batch cooking and training means I'm messing around less on the inter-web-nets. I didn't know how to quantify this goal but by virtue of plain 'ole math, I'm not dicking around on the internet as much. I still think I need a more concrete goal for this and want to roll it over to the next challenge. 4) Defective Training - So in #2 I mentioned seeing my doctor again. I had an appointment with him because I'm done with having lower back pain once and for all. I had a long talk with him about how it's been well over 10 years that my lower back has been fucked up and the severity waxes and wanes. When it's good, it merely stings to lay down on my back. When it's bad, it's a 10-out-of-10 on the pain scale and so bad that even bending my back a little to wipe in the bathroom brings me to unintended tears. I'm sick of living like this. And while losing weight will put less strain everywhere, including my back, there's no fucking way that this is some garden variety 'just getting older' style of back pain. I told him that I knew a chiropracter wasn't covered by my medical, but I wanted to know what else was doable. In the same medical building about 2 months ago, I saw that there was a physical therapy center and after talking to that receptionist, they *would* take my insurance but I needed a Dr. appt to get the work-order in. Hence, here I am, back at the Dr. The doc started explaining how muscle relaxers can help and went on and on about advil and motrin and whatever the medical names for generic pain relievers are and I felt a sinking my stomach. I felt that he was just thinking that maybe I was bullshitting him and that 'pop some drugs' was going to fix things. ...But after his rambling on that stuff, he let out a sigh and mentioned that we also can see what is going on with my back. I ordered an x-ray to be taken down the street. He also put in the work-order for the physical therapy so someone could look at my back. I explained that I've tried stretching videos like so....: ....in the past but I needed more accountability so since physical therapy is covered, I wanted to go as much as possible and be forced into doing whatever exercises/stretches needed to be done. He nodded and went, "It's always good to have a coach to keep you in line". And with that, we shook hands and the things were faxed to xray/physio buildings. After work I went and got my xray done (nice little mess that was but was cleared up pretty quick). I put on one of those stupid gowns and had to ditch the pants. The woman comes to the other side of the curtain and asks if I'm ok and I bluntly go, "Yeah, I just don't want my ass hanging out." I was given a second gown to wear like a robe. About 20 minutes later and my xrays were done. Got the results back and I'm fine: there are no fused or slipped discs. *sigh of relief* This means it's must just be muscular. And if that's the case, that means it's fixable. A few days later, I get a phone call from physio to book an appointment. This past Wednesday I was supposed to meet with Jeff and I tried my damndest to not say this while near him: He has me do a few twists and turns, lie on a table and he rotates my legs and stuff. The whole time he's asking me questions. I explain what I said to the dr and that I'm pretty sure I have anterior pelvic tilt and because of my weight in the gut-area, it's pulling and making it worse. While I'm losing weight, I still need to work on how to fix this. He seemed.....oddly surprised that I knew wtf I was talking about. I guess he gets a lot of clueless people in his office. Anyways, my-name-eh-jehhff Jeff does two last posture things and puts his hands on my hips right behind me and squeezes ... ....and goes, "YUP! Definitely have tilt." I have a severe tilt - like 30 degrees of fucked up (The sequel to 50 Shades of Gray) Apparently he had the same issue years ago. He attached these little electric pads to my lower back and tells me it should feel comfortable. It does NOT feel comfortable. It oscillates between little pokes and finger jabs. He turns it down and then uses a heating pad on my back. Had to turn it down twice. Apparently I'm temperature-sensitive. I counter with how I'm cold immune. He points as his legs, "Ahh, one of those guys with the shorts out in the snow?" Mmmhmm. The back-zapper and boiling bag do their things for a solid 10 minutes as I try to stay calm and be ok with things touching me. I'm then brought out to this big ass L-shaped room. I can see other physio therapists working with clients and I'm told to lay on a bench and do a few things: -Roll my pelvis back to press it against the floor -Keep my knees together and twist side to side -Use a foot strap and pull a leg straight up and hold it -Put a yoga ball under my legs and do the same twisting side to side -Stretching bands are wrapped around my knees and I need to spread my legs apart -Stand up and sit in a chair with the world's biggest yoga ball in front of me and roll it forward and lean onto it while staying seated This entire thing took over an hour, but nothing was in excruciating pain (unlike that damn video link I posted above). I asked him the question that was in the back of my mind the entire time, "Will I get to normal and how long will that take?" Now, depending on what you read on the inter-web-nuts, some people say it takes 2 weeks and others 6+ months. Obviously, we're all different, but barring that, what did my-name-eh-jehhff Jeff think in his professional opinion. According to him and my severity, it will take constant rehab and in about 2 months, I should be normal. Only two months and I can finally feel normal? He says that the first month, he'll see me more often but then the second month, I don't have to come that much. A SNAFU has appeared. I tell him I don't want to be here less, I want to be here more, even if it's an inconvenience to my schedule. He will see what he can do and when I get up to the receptionist, he tells her that I requested more sessions so I'm able to go 3x week to physio. I'm also told that I need to get a yoga ball (they sell them for 5 bucks at a store down the road) and I have to do 4 stretches that he prints out (which also have video links which is pretty cool). I can skip 1 day a week but that's it. Meaning I do 3 at-home stretching sessions and 3 in-person sessions. 50% of my stretching is supervised and I get shockpads/heat towels to make it easier? I can do that. And now I can tell myself, "I need to do my stretches today because I have physio tomorrow" and it will usually be true. Two months. Just two months until I can have a normal body again after at least a decade and not have to deal with those flare-ups that were excruciating. And I have a high pain tolerance, too. I broke my pinky, sliced 3 inches on the back of my leg, and had all sorts of bangs and trips and fuckups in spartan races and those all amounted to about a 4 out of 10 compared to these back-pain flare-ups. This means in just 2 months, I can get back to doing squats. My beloved squats, how much you hurt me with this pelvic tilt.... (Face-goals) I did some math and I mean, I should be about 200 pounds but I was building up to squatting 120+lb while being 360, so I feel like that means my morbidly obese bodyweight combined with the weight I was holding means my squat is somewhere in the ~260 range but here's the thing: I know I can do more. Way more. The problem since I started learning how to squat has been my lower back flaring. Stabbing pain as I'm trying to keep correct form starts to break down around rep 25 or so and then I need to cool off and not squat for weeks while my back (sort of) heals. My muscles can take squatting much more than that which makes me wonder what I'll be able to do once this back issue is finally resolved. I know it doesn't come through in text, but I'm excited. Like REAL fucking excited. My whole life, I've felt with my weight that I was defective and broken. And with my back issues being around for at least 1/3 of my life, that really sent the message home that I'm just some flawed... thing. (How I feel internally many days) But with this challenge wrapping up and hitting 50 pounds down and my back healing having a deadline, I'll only feel broken for just a little longer. Just a little. bit. longer. 5) Defective Socializing - I tried with this one and I checked on other's threads more than I posted on my own. But I've noticed that people are excited for 2 weeks and then sort of just give up and then there's not much to comment on. I'm not throwing shade - I think the past couple covid-years have been hell on everyone and if not for the actual posters, then certainly plenty of people we care about and love which rubs off on us. I guess I'm sort of musing as to what needs to happen, collectively, for everyone to be more engaged and posting more. Sure, there are some outliers that will post every day and be having whole multi-page convos; but I feel like that's the exception and not the norm. Years ago, it was the opposite so I'm sitting here rubbing my beard and wondering what to change. I mean, it's hard to have, "I'm going to do lots of things to better myself"-challenge when a great deal of people are in crisis management mode and are just trying to survive. To all of you who happen to read this: I love you and care about you and hope the best for you; because people is all we have to pull through tough times. 6) Defective Passion - I had a bit of a creative...let's call it 'creative crisis'. You see, I wasn't excited about working on this army stuff anymore. I had so many other armies that I was more interested in and I played it safe with building *this* particular army since it's my first army and I figured I should know the basics of army and mini construction before I tackled a big creative project. I still was doing creative stuff this challenge, but it wasn't so much actual art as it was theory-crafting. You see, I like a lot of armies and minis. A lot. Too many for a normal human to like. Let's start with Warhammer40k, shall we? First off is the 1)Adeptus Mechanicus. The Tech-priests of Mars that is my current project. I had some lore and ideas and started casting minis but then... I had more ideas. Ideas that didn't work for *this* army, which means if I wanted to use those creative ideas, I would need to make a SECOND 2)Adeptus Mechanicus army. Then I wanted to make an 3)Alpha Legion of space marines, essentially combining ideas from multiple space marine factions. I can ally in Questor Knights into my Adeptus army and my Alpha Legion army, which means I mine as well get 2 other models and make a 4)knights army... I love the evil factions and the chaos space marines have much more interesting lore and since they use demons and demon-engine (hell constructs that are a hybrid of machine and demon. Tell me something fucking cool than that. Go ahead, I'll wait.) Within that chaos legion are multiple TYPES, with their own ideas that I had. Not to mention war-bands of smaller armies that I could ally in. This meant the following armies I was also interested in: 5)-Emperor's Children: Followers of She Who Thirsts, the Goddess of Excess. They have sonic sound marines who have guns that blare music so loud that it melts people's eyeballs and ruptures organs (ok see, that's cooler than demon engines but not by much). They are like an 80's hair band, ready to be all about sex, drugs, and rock'n'roll. 6)-World Eaters: Followers of Khorne the God of War. Blood for the blood god. Skulls for the skull throne. Hulked out red savages with chainsaw axes that charge in, bloodthirsty and maniacally cleaving into enemies. http://warzonestudio.com/image/catalog/blog/Worldeaters/Buthcerhorde01.jpg 7)-Death Guard - Followers of Nurgle, the god of plagues, disease, and death. The worshippers are infested with rot, able to take insane amounts of damage as they shamble up the board, armed with scythes and tanks that launch bursts of acid that eat away steel and flesh, leaving a puddle of infected sludge and ruin in their wake. A slow looming horror awaits that cannot be stopped. 8 - Thousand Sons - The cursed marines that follow Tzeentch, the patron of devious machinations and mastery of unholy sorcery. Their ambition to conquer and control is unquenchable as powerful spells lay enemies to dust. This post will be 10x the length if I include pictures for all of them. 9) -Word Bearers - the Original chosen to fall to chaos, their armor is a rich burgandy with silver trim. Truly fanatics to the worship of the chaos gods, they sacrifice cultists and let demons possess their bodies to commune with the gibbering maddness of evil that lay just beyond our dimension. 10)-Night Lords - Savage stalkers of prey who feed off of fear and their own pervertsed sense of justice. Think if Batman were to go evil and eventually kill for sport. 11)-Iron Warriors - The hearty and toughest chaos marines, unlike their Word Bearer cousins who worship and see unholy divinity in the chaos entities, the Iron Warriors are hardened soldiers that see these hellspawn the same as a rocket launcher: a weapon to be controlled. They make chaos their bitch with enslaving more demon engines and are masters of siege. With a bitter black cruelty, they further their machinations with martial discipline and refuse to yield. 12-Creations of Bile - Fabius Bile is this universes Dr. Frankenstein, trying to perfect the space marines into what he calls 'Nu-men' instead of human. His concoctions vary from increased size and strength, to mutants that look subtle but have a genetic fervor and love of their creator, letting him have cells upon cells throughout the galaxy. He has betrayed everyone he has every come across in the pursuit of his version of cosmic justice in making a new galaxy-spanning order that relinquishes control to him and him alone. There is so much more about him but I'm keeping this short. He is my favorite character in the entire lore. 13-Red Corsairs- Now I'm just going to have to shorten these into a snippet since this has become far too long for anyone to read. 14-T'au Empire - Sniper race. 15-Necrons - Terminator 1+2 civilization. 16-Harlequins - Dancing murder-clowns. 17-Druhkari - BDSM torture space elves that are like Pinhead from Hellraiser 18-Chaos Knights - Massive skyscraper-sized robots. ...And this is warhammer 40k. As in, 40,000 years in the future. This is the sci-fi section. The fantasy section (like lord of the rings) is... 19-Sylvaneth - Ents/Tree spirits 20- Demons of Khorne 21- Demons of Tzeentch 22- Demons of Nurgle 23 - Demons of Slaanesh 24- Beasts of Chaos - Minotaurs, satyrs, and other goat-creatures hellbent on tearing down all of civilization. 25- Skaven - Trillions of rat-men that backstab each other and have massive innovations with machinery and biogenetics and mutants. 26- Slaves to Darkness - the more 'generalized' version of all the chaos legions combined, all under Archeon. 27- Flesh-Eater Courts - Savage naked cannibal monsters that used to be men, now afflicted with a maddening vampiric curse that makes them think they are still civilized and all king arthur types of knights, but are jibbering maniacs who stab things with bones. 28- Soulblight Gravelords - Your classic 'fancy' vampires, along with hordes of shambling skeletons and zombies. Also werewolves. 29- Ossiarch Bonereapers - Necromancy race of blacksmithed bones, created through magic to be a sort of old Roman Legion type of mastercrafted bone terrors. 30-Gloomspite Gitz - Teeny little goblins that live in the underground caverns who get high on mushrooms and ride bipedal red feriocious pig-things and large dimwitted trolls that all worship a lunatic celestial being called 'The Bad Moon'. 31-Orruks - Multiple subtypes of Orcs, but my favorite is the KruleBoys, the swamp-dwelling sneaky and crafting orcs that use crossbows, point, and ride large swamp monsters into battle. 32-Ogor Mawtribes - Huge hulking behemoth-men that are cursed with an endless hunger. Large butchers that will kill and eat literally everything, from people to gemstones, in order to satiate their ever-present rumbling stomachs. Ride large wooly mammoths and sabertooth tiger beasts. 33-Gargants - Massive, like skyscraper tall giants that are slow and stupid, but allow for lots and lots of conversion and art opportunities to make personal (much like the 40k skyscraper sized Knights). --------- Phew. So that's 33 armies. If you buy a whole army, full price, from their store, it's about $1,500. The fantasy ones are significantly cheaper (and smaller) but still, we're talking over $1,000 per army. At 33 armies, I could buy a car or three with the amount of miniatures I want and even if I was a millionaire, I couldn't bring myself to spend some 40-60k of little plastic figures, despite how much I am interested in the lore. My 'creative crisis' was doing the math and realizing all of this. Sorry, but things are going to have to be streamlined, cut, combined, and the ideas related to them allocated, abandoned, or revised to make this work. Here's why this was so maddening: let's say I want to make the KruleBoys army and I have all these cool swamp ideas and a color scheme. Well, I don't want to use the same ideas in a different army, nor do I want them to look the same so I need different ideas for a 2nd army, a 3rd army, a 4th army. Now, this is fine when theory-crafting because I, in fact, have literally HUNDREDS of ideas concerning these 33 armies. But that also means, at the speed I'm going, that it will take me about....the rest of my goddamn life if I wanted to devote it entirely to plastic toys. No Bueno. So I sat down and thought. I thought and thought and thought about what ideas whould go where. I researched the lore of each of these factions. For months, I've been reading books on these armies and how they intertwine with the huge narrative scope. And one by one, I started to cull them.. This is about art. Creativity. If it does not spark some sort of longing and happiness and joy, then why am I even doing it? Why should I make my swamp monsters a reality if I'm going to make them and move on and never appreciate it? Just because I *can* come up with really cool ideas, doesn't mean I should *act* on those ideas. The theory board has been mulled over and over half of these options have been cut down and assimilated smaller ideas into more grandiose thematic ideas for armies. Rather than, "I could swap these 2 units" and the rest of the army is left alone, I instead thought about how I could extract the essence of coolness of the ideas and distill them into other armies. Instead of 5 armies that all have slight tweaks and modifications, and contain models that I don't even like (but need to have them in order to make them playable), I instead have 1 fully converted and interesting army. I would rather have 1 army that is a labor of love and has dozens of ideas strewn throughout to make a thematic and unique army perspective instead of multiple armies that only have a little bit of creative liberties worked in. I could go on for legit 50 pages about all the ideas and all of these armies but I'm going to cut it here. The point I'm getting at is the creative crisis is pretty much over, and I have sort of streamlined my wild ideas into more tangible things and a more realistic time-table (and realistic purchases) which I hope to flesh out more in the next challenge. Overall, I think I did pretty good this challenge but I totally want to expand and do more. More of everything. I'm making progress and I don't want to slow it down.
  13. Although I've been quiet on my challenge, I've still been getting stuff done. First off - the gremlin has been slain. The job that I was having serious anxiety over didn't pan out and I'm SO RELIEVED. The only really plus was related to money and everything else was in the 'Nope' category. Been looking at other things and found a job that I would love and I'm hoping I'll hear back in the very near future but we'll see. In other news, everything has been planted and things are growing. I'd show pictures but...... they were all eaten by... ...this stupid asshole. I had fresh strawberries I was going to pick and the very next day: GONE. I had over a dozen little tomatoes I was excited to eat: GONE. The lettuce was coming in nicely and was getting big: GONE. This shithead ran rampant through all my awesome-looking stuff. I've gone and bought chickenwire to wrap up the planters because I refuse to have this happen again. While I was checking stuff out at 'Tractor Supplies Plus' or whatever the hell the store was called, I got myself a huge bar of soap that smells like leather and 'murica. I also saw theeeeeeeese: There were two big metal bins full of chicks all huddled together and darting around while a woman was throwing flakes of something inside. I kept eyeing them. They're so adorable. And I asked the lady if I could pet one. Her response was, "Well....I don't let people do that but.... ok." She scooped out a little yellow peep and cupped it in her hand. I pet it's tiny head and back. I was expecting it to be fluffier, like a dog or cat but it wasn't as poofy but still nice. Made my day to be honest and I entertained the thought for an hour or so afterwards on if I should buy some chickens as they're only $4. It would be cool to have a couple chickens and eventually get a supply of eggs. For my art stuff that I should have been posting pictures of, that shit was derailed because of my phone breaking and it taking like a week on-and-off to try and copy all my stuff off of it. But here we are: the bulk of the Ironstrider ballistarii. I carved out the servitor (the black clothed guy hooked up in the middle), and I didn't bother with the little chicken arms because they don't do anything (and will be using them for something else). Instead, I added the guitar wire as snaking cords on the front part. With it being more bare-bones, I still have to glue together and add the weapon/rider on top. I also started the basing of the Dune-desert stuff with cork pieces as large rocks. I just put on a coat of metallic paint and I'm hoping to add the rider/weapons tomorrow after work. I'm seeing my dr tomorrow to see about physical therapy for my lower back. I haven't done any squats or serious lifts that would affect my back for a long time and this is one of those things I've put off for so so so long and need to deal with if I want to have a better life. I'm hoping that after my appointment, I can get a recommendation and schedule physio (covered by insurance) for 3x week for a couple weeks? I don't really know tbh but I need to do something. As for weight-loss, my pants are falling off and I haven't had any major screw ups besides some ice cream cake on 4th of July. Rather than have that turn into a 3 weeks spiral of junk, I'm doing totally fine right now. I have some extra fruit if I'm feeling the sugar antsiness. Oh it wasn't a little. I wasn't sleeping and I kept trying to convince myself that this job was a good idea when it totally wasn't. I mean, I want a better job but that one I applied for would have ended me. That's what made me end my 12 year toxic relationship tbh. I thought about the future with her and all I could image was being 400+ pounds, having had a heart attack, having a kid that I regretted having who didn't respect me, trapped in a loveless marriage and eating hungry man microwave meals while my soul was crushed and seeing my dumb kid draw with crayons on the wall. It's VERY specific but I seriously couldn't shake this snapshot of my potential future out of my head. Ending that trashfire was one of the best choices I ever made. Yeah, and I'm not even done sorting it all out. So many printscreens were of conversations to remember something important to chronologe. It eats away at self-confidence. Like if I just looked how I felt inside, my whole life outlook would be different. How you doing, man?
  14. Age 15+ Congrats on the running.
  15. Oh thank god. I hate celery. Like running or something else getting done?
  16. Lol. You better not forget. It's in all caps.
  17. But you won't have hypothyroidism if you're dead from starvation I don't understand why Dr's offices operate at less hours and at the same time as most people's work schedules.
  18. You aren't able to keep the swiffer bottle and then put whatever you want inside it? Idk, I've only ever used swiffer +their chems for cleaning floors.
  19. If I *understood* how to play, I might lol. I'm 100% a newbie in this regard. Etsy is an amazing place. Tons of people have 3d printers and .stl files for making stuff. I don't remember *who* I got the specific chicken-rex from, but a quick search shows plenty of people selling them for various prices: https://www.etsy.com/listing/1034634203/apex-rex-hybrid-mini-monster-mayhem-life?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=chicken+rex&ref=sr_gallery-1-15&sts=1&organic_search_click=1 I got the roaring one instead of the idle one. A little bit bigger than a thumb-nail. Ended up painting it up for my sister as a bday gift.
  20. Sounds like things are going along great. Good to hear. Must be good to have that 'I feel normal' feeling with the meds.
  21. Pushups? So.... Become Wesker?
  22. wootwoot, rhode island ftw. *cracks knuckles* Within the DSM, there are a list of criteria that 'qualify' a person as having a specific issue. Within differential diagnosis, there is a section according to each condition that talks about overlap with other disorders. Say, for example, a child might have ADHD. Within ADHD there is also a differential diagnosis of Autism spectrum. Both exhibit "inattention, social dysfunction, difficult-to-manage behavior." The social dysfunction and peer rejection seen with people with ADHD need to be *differential* from the social disengagement, isolation, and indifference seen from someone who is on the autism spectrum. So he bold section is applicable to both people with ADHD and people on the spectrum, but more time needs to be taken in order to more clearly define the person as having adhd or having austism. Based on a lot of what you write in prior challenges, it sounds like there is overlap with a couple of things, which then makes it harder to clearly define what, exactly, is the classification that you have. I mean, think about co-occuring disorders: a person is exhibiting a lot of issues - it is because of a specific personality diagnosis or is it because they are taking drugs to self-medicate? It's hard to separate conditions if there is overlapping critera. *cracks knuckles* Gonna write a lot. ADHD has a whole list of criteria that might be muddied because of other issues. Here, it'll take a few minutes but I'll type straight from the DSM/therapist's bible and include my own personal notes throughout: Must have: 1)Inattention- 6 (or more) of the following symptoms have persisted for at least 6 months to a degree that is inconsistent with developmental level and that NEGATIVELY IMPACTS DIRECTLY on social and academic/occupational activities: a-Often fails to give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork, at work, or during other activities (overlooks details and work inaccurate) b-Often has difficulty in sustaining attention in tasks or play activities (has difficulty remaining focused during lectures, conversations, or lengthy reading). c-Often does not seem to listen when spoken to directly (mind seems elsewhere, even in the absence of any obvious distraction) d-Often does not follow through on instructions and fails to finish schoolwork, chores, or duties in the workplace (starts tasks but quickly loses focus/sidetracked) e-Often has difficulty organizing tasks and activities (difficulty managing sequential tasks, difficulty keeping materials and belongings in order, messy, disorganized work, has poor time management, fails to meet deadlines). f-Often avoids, dislikes, or is reluctant to engage in tasks that require sustained mental effort (schoolwork/homework, reports, completing forms, reviewing lengthy papers). g-Often loses things necessary for tasks or activities (school materials, pencils, books, tools, wallet, keys, paperwork, phone) h-Is often easily distracted by extraneous stimuli (unregulated thoughts) i-Is often forgetful in daily activities (doing chores, running errands, returning calls, paying bills, keeping appointments.) Part 2) Hyperactivity and impulsivity- 6 (or more) of the following list: a-Often fidgets with or taps hands or feet or squirms in seat. b-Often leaves seat in situations wen remaining seated is expected (school/work) c-Often runs about of climbs in situations were it is inappropriate (in adults, may translate to feeling restless) d-Often unable to play or engage in leisure activities quietly. e-Is often 'on the go' acting as if 'driven by a motor' (is unable to be or uncomfortable being still for extended time, as in restaurants, meetings, may be restless) f-Often talks excessively g-Often blurts out an answer before a question has been completed (completes other sentences, cannot wait turn to talk) h-Often has difficulty waiting their turn (in line) i-Often interrupts or intrudes on others (buts into convos, games, activities, may start using people's items without asking or receiving permission, may intrude on others. Now besides needing 6 in part 1 and 6 in part 2, there also needs to be: -Several inattentive or hyperactive impulsive symptoms present PRIOR to age 12. -Several inattentive/hyperactive impulsive symptoms present in TWO or more settings (home and work, school and home, with friends and with relatives, etc) -Clear evidence that the symptoms interfere with or reduce the quality of life of social/academic/occupational functioning -The symptoms do not occur exclusively during the course of schizophrenia or another psychotic disorder and are not better explained by another mental disorder (ex: Mood disorder, anxiety disorder, dissociative disorder, personality disorder, substance intoxication or withdrawal) Right there in the bold is what the therapist is talking about. The differential diagnosis, aka, the overlap conditions within ADHD are the following: -Oppositional Defiant Disorder (basically, being rebellious towards authority figures. The antsy-restlessness criteria might be because someone has this instead) -Intermittent Explosive Disorder (Both ADHD and IED have high levels of impulsive behavior. IED has more aggression tied to that disorder and IED can pay attention.) -Neurodevelopmental Disorders (like how i was talking about autism earlier. repetitive movements for autism could be = restless for ADHD. The social issues overlap as well. Tourettes and repetitive tics could also be classified here.) -Specific Learning Disorder (Restless-impulsive because the person has a learning disability and it's more an outburst of frustration from not 'getting it'.) -Intellectual Disability (Same as the learning disorder, basically. It's stemming from frustration rather than an inability to focus.) -Reactive Detachment Disorder (social disengagement overlap) -Anxiety Disorders (ADHD are inattentive because of their attraction to external stimuli, new activities, or preoccupation with enjoyable activities. The differential diagnosis that separates Anxiety from ADHD is the 'due to worry and rumination'. ADHD, the classification, is NOT associated with worry/rumination.. -Depressive Disorders (Inability to concentrate overlap.) -Bipolar (Both has increased activity, poor concentration, and increased impulsivity, BUT the features within bipolar are -Episodic-. They come and go. The Increased impulsivity and inattention is also accompanied with elevated mood, grandiosity, and other bipolar features during an Episode. ADHD is common for those who display "excessive anger and irritability".) -Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (Overlap is pervasive irritability and intolerance of frustration, but there is NO impulsive actions with DMDD. However, a lot of people who are diagnosed with ADHD are also diagnosed with DMDD as they seem to go hand-in-hand. -Substance Use (all depends on the substance. Basically you can't make a distinction if, say, a person is ALWAYS drinking: maybe the person always drinking is showing ADHD symptoms, or weed or cocaine, etc) -Personality Disorders (Such as Borderline, Narcissistic, and others. A lot of the personality disorders feature disorganization, social intrusiveness, emotional dysregulation, cognitive dysregulation. HOWEVER, ADHD is not characterized by: Fear of abandonment, self-injury, extreme ambivalence, etc. -Psychotic Disorders (ADHD is not diagnosed if there is a psychotic episode) -Medication-induce Symptoms (Inattention, hyperactivity, impulsivity can be attributed to certain meds, like bronchodilators, isonazid, neuroleptics, thyroid replacement medication. For instance, if people have an overactive thyroid, there is a surgery done to intentionally damage the thyroid. Then you have to be on a medication forever which essential does what your thyroid should have done - which is related to having energy and weightloss. That energy increase might be too much and come off as irritability/impulsive/restlessness, so a person on a thyroid medication might have symptoms that would seem like ADHD even though they don't have ADHD.) -Neurocognitive disorders (Dementia and other neurocognitive disorders have similar features of restlessness/confusion/inattention, etc.) --------------------- Looking at all of this, in addition to your posts and the fact we hung out years ago in person, it looks like you might not qualify (but be close/have overlap) but even though I'm a professional - I didn't have multiple therapy sessions with you so take what I'm saying with a few grains of salt. If there are other classifications you have in that Differential Diagnosis list, then the explanation for ADHD might lie in those conditions instead. If you are always irritable and frustrated, but you aren't going out and doing impulsive things, that looks like Disruptive Mood Dysregulation. If you are inattentive a lot and you ruminate and worry, then it makes sense that you would be classified as having a Generalized Anxiety Disorder instead of ADHD. PTSD has overlap with these things as well. So if you had Generalized Anxiety Disorder and PTSD, that might look like having 75% of what would qualify as ADHD. The overlap is what makes classification so difficult, because it's not very often that a person has just 1 single thing that is going on with them and instead, you end up with a ballpark estimation of what is going on with the person. Knowing clearly what you do have would then determine what kinds of meds - it would be a mess if you were categorized as 1 thing and given a med that doesn't actually help at all (or even makes things worse) rather than getting a clear and precise diagnosis. While I totally understand 'I need to know what is wrong with me', as I've been in that boat for many years as well, it's not something very cut and dry. However, the fact that you care and are concerned about this shows you have motivation to change and work on whatever issue(s) there are. You're a great person. You're funny and engaging when we met. And I know that, given time, fine-tuning this with a therapist will be helpful for you. You got this: even when there are lots of days that you think you don't. You still show motivation for change and that's the biggest determining factor for *actually* changing.
  23. Congrats. Now as long as you don't have horribly hotdog burps like I do for the next 24 hours, you're good. Ankle 100% yet?
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