JewBu Quest: From Abuse to Happiness

JewBu: a Jew who practices forms of Buddhist meditation & spirituality. This blog documents my quest to 1) heal from sexual, verbal, and emotional abuse, 2) come to terms with losing Mom and Grandma to Alzheimers, 3) find balance, explore the spiritual, stay present. Bascially, I've experienced some pretty crappy shit in my life and want to find a way to move past it and find happiness.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Mom Fell, I Feel Like Hell

I've been feeling crappy all day - I don't know if this is still the migraine or if I have a sinus infection or what. But, I've barely gotten anything done today. I really tried to work on the thesis, but I just can't concentrate and my vision is even a little fuzzy.

I spoke with my therapist about needing to not bring up issues towards the end of session and leaving them broadly open like we have the last two weeks. Like this whole issue with A, we left the session acknowledging the issue, but without any sense of where I'm going with it. I think that there might be tie between this and me getting sick later in the day after therapy both this week and last.

So, then, I'm pushing myself to walk my dog tonight and feeling lonely, and I thought to myself, I can call my mom. There's lots of snow and ice in Kansas City, so I wasn't sure who would be by to visit her or if the woman I hired to take care of her in the evenings would be able to make it over. Mom told me that she fell down earlier on her back. She sounded somewhat disoriented, and it kinda broke my heart when she asked me when I would be over. I told her that I'm flying back to town in a week and a half and she repeated "the 12th" when I told her the day I'll see her.

I called my dad who hadn't heard back Mom's back. (The facility is required to call him when there's an injury.) I asked him to call over there and find out what's going on and if Mom needs any pain meds. I then called my sister to let her know. She'll go tomorrow and let me know how Mom is.

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Another Migraine

I got another migraine yesterday. I had been sensing that it was coming, but was hoping that I could brush it off somehow. I'm so behind in work with my thesis now - first I had the cold, now the migraine, in between technical problems using specialized software. Its hard to work today because I'm still loopy either from the migraine or all of the medication that I took yesterday.


Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Why My Relationship with *A* is Tied to My Healing From the Rape

I just got back to therapy, and we left things with needing to explore more the tie (in my mind) between my relationship with *A* and healing from the rape. I feel like I need *A* to forgive me for what happened and for how I responded afterwards. I also feel like if I don't get a second chance from him that it means that the rapist robbed me of my relationship with *A*, and I don't want him to have that power.

I wrote about this a couple of months ago here. But, I realize how much this was an issue for me last year, before I got overwhelmed with the murder and my family and everything. I had gotten to the point of feeling like I could move on and get past it, but I think I'm kinda getting pushed back to feeling like I need to resolve this. Of course, maybe I can't resolve it because *A* doesn't want to work with me on it, and I really just need his forgiveness.

Or maybe the path for me right now is just to keep practicing moving past it on a daily basis - trying to let go of things with *A* a little more every day.

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Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Family Arguments and Healing

Someone referred me to a local doctor of osteopathic medicine who specializes in neuromusculoskeletal medicine. I got a referral from my health insurance, which was somewhat difficult because I wasn't quite sure what was going to happen.

But, I had my first appointment today, and I do feel good about how it went. I took two hours, most of which was spent with me on my back and the doctor feeling around my body, paying special attention to injuries around my upper left back/shoulder and poking and stretching. He asked a lot of questions about my medical history, and I really appreciated that when he would be in an awkward position (aka would naturally be looking at my breasts or something), he would close his eyes. I don't know how to describe it; he just made me feel very comfortable.

He confirmed that I have some serious problems going on with my back. He seriously asked if I was dropped as a child. I think that a lot of the problem is stress related. The doctor said that I might notice a drop in my anxiety level from his treatments.

Anyway, I called my sister today. She made Mom an appointment to go to the gynecologist and called my father today to ask for Mom's health insurance card. She said that Dad freaked out about how he controls when Mom goes to a doctor and hung up on her. So she canceled the appointment for Mom. And now Dad and my sister aren't talking to each other. I was tempted to call Dad, but decided to not get in the middle.

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Monday, November 27, 2006

Family: The Dream

Last night, I turned on my heat for the first time this season, and I put on some of these heating spielydiels on my neck and lower back. I took some cold medicine and conked out after what started to be a little bit of an emotional night, as I thought about the fact that 10 years ago I was getting ready to move to Israel (I left *A* and was raped).

I had been waking up early, stuffed up for the last few mornings, but this morning I woke up 10 minutes late. I had been having this dream - it seemed very real, so I must have been deeply asleep.

I was traveling with my parents and my sister, at a hotel somewhere. There was a warm and happy feeling. My sister kept going off by herself though, and we weren't sure where to find her. Then, we were all of a sudden getting ready for some sort of party. All of a sudden, my grandfather came to perform a brit mila on my nephew, and I was sitting around a table with my brother in law and father. We were all laughing about how we didn't want to see it, but were happy that it was happening.

That's when I woke up. I'm walking around now in kind of a daze - in part I think because of the dream and in part because I'm still a bit sick. There are lots of errands and places to be today, but it feels kinda good to be productive again.

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Sunday, November 26, 2006

I'm Back

I feel like I'm in a bit of a fog. I felt really tired on Tuesday after participating on a panel discussion and doing some work on this graduate mentoring award that I'm nominating my advisor for. A couple of friends came over to watch the Gilmore Girls and hang out. When I woke up on Wednesday, I felt a cold coming on. I had hoped that I would be able to nip it in the bud, but it just kept getting worse.

I was so exhausted the whole time that I barely left the couch and spent a lot of time just sleeping and healing. I thought a lot about when I would get sick as a kid, and mom would let me spend the day in her bed with a blanket over me with the dog and she'd bring me tea and we'd play games and watch tv together. I loved sick days with her.

On Thanksgiving, I called my sister and she put my Mom on the phone. Mom kept saying: "I just wanted to call you to say Happy Thanksgiving." Then, my niece got on the phone and sang me Thanksgiving songs. Later my sister and I talked about how dad is being very stubborn now and can't seem to relate well to Mom; he just orders her around and gets frustrated when she doesn't comply.

Today is the first day that I'm really starting to feel better. I'm still recovering, but I was able to catch up on some laundry and errands. It felt good to take some time to do these things for myself - like I've been meaning to get some things at Costco for months now, but never had time. I am WAY behind on my thesis now that almost a week has gone by without me having done any work on it. Its been two weeks since my last meeting with my advisor, and I don't have the work done that she wanted me to have. And now, it is only 2 weeks before I'm going to Kansas City. Its a bit of a whirlwind.

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Friday, November 24, 2006

Caught a Cold, but Very Thankful

I caught a cold Wednesday and have spent the last few days in bed. My cousins were sweet enough to invite me for Thanksgiving. My cousin just called to say that they're going to do Thanksgiving dinner again because they had no left overs (dinner was at their friends') and invited me up. I'm still sick, but I feel warm that I have them.

Sorry that I've disappeared for awhile....hopefully, I'll recover soon. The nice thing about a cold is that you know it'll go away if you just rest and take care of yourself.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

The Wedding

I just got back from the wedding. *A* is still there. A friend of mine and his wife walked me back to the hotel. *A* said he'll be back soon to change, and then he's going to go smoke pot with a couple of guys from high school. I'm really disappointed...even though I know that I saw this coming. I mean, insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results; I must be insane!

The thing is that I look amazing. The stylist put my hair up but where it still looks really curly; its just gorgeous. And, I've got this really minimal but flattering make-up. The hot stone massage by the way was amazing; I feel so pampered. The therapist used both hot and cold stones to really get my muscles to release; I could barely move at the end. I had a really good afternoon. I left *A* at the hotel with no plans, but I had tried to coordinate stuff with him, so I don't even feel bad.

But, when I returned to get ready, he told me to walk around in my bra if I need to, but that I had to get ready because he didn't want to be late. Then, he hinted like he wanted to see the pearl bra, so I went and put it on, and he said: "is that a wonderbra?" I said "nope; its all me." It just made me feel really good.

The wedding was beautiful. The bride walked down to "Shneyim" (two) by David Broza. And for the traditional walking around the groom by the bride, well they split it up - so she walked around him 3 times, then he around her, and the last time they sort of walked around each other. Oh, and at the table with namecards, there were wedding pictures of other family members. There was some talk about the groom (my friend)'s mother who died a few years ago, which made me cry a little.

I had a hard time finding people to talk to at the wedding. I did manage to branch away from *A* and make some chit chat until he approached me and said that he didn't feel like meeting new people. So, I went with him (first mistake).

Then, when we sat down, and almost immediately they start playing Jewish music - like hava nagelia and stuff like that. And I thought about my mom and how much she would love being there and the dancing, and I had to leave the building, I couldn't stop crying. It was freezing outside too - literally. I called my sister who I knew would be with her and got to talk to her. She sounded okay; my sister said Mom had just been talking about me.

When I went back in, I felt like no one even noticed that I had been gone. I wished I had a girlfriend to talk to about what I'm feeling. AND especially to point out the problems with this dress. So, the bra totally shows because the dress is too low cut - and if I move around at all, the dress REALLY shows my bra. Thank god I have this shawl thing to cover myself up, but the whole night I'm really self conscious, and I'm not quite sure what to do with this stuff later. Maybe I need to write a letter to the owner of the lingerie store and explain the situation and hope she'll work something out with me - I mean, I know I can't return this since I've worn it. And maybe I'll take the dress to a tailor and ask to have it fixed so it will fit me better.

God, what am I doing here. It does give me hope that my friend got married without his Mom, and it was joyous that maybe one day I can have that too. But, I can't stop thinking about how much my Mom wants me to get married and would enjoy a wedding. I hate that I can't give that to her. So, I look over at *A* who tries to make me laugh, and I can't help thinking that I wish that he and I could get married. And that's insane right, but I still think it. And *A* said that maybe after he gets drunk, he'd try to grab my breast before passing out. What kind of sick relationship is this?

The stylist who did my hair said that she bets *A* and I will hook up tonight, and part of me hoped that we would because I still miss what we had. I can't help it. I don't know how to get out of this ridiculous cycle. And now I sitting alone in the hotel room and crying and wishing that I had someone to appreciate how great I look tonight and how hard it is to lose my mom. I kinda feel like I get that from my blog and all of its supporters, which is why at midnight, I stayed up to write this out. Also, it makes me feel good to get it now I don't have to hold on to it anymore, maybe I can just let it go...if even a little bit.

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Friday, November 17, 2006

In Denver: So What Am I Doing Here?

Well, I felt a lot better this morning and managed to drag my tuchus to pack and get on the plane. At the airport, I was feeling a little bit of the migraine aura type thing and was tempted to just go home. But here I am. The whole thing is a bit odd. *A* got us a room with a king size bed instead of two double beds, and I didn't say anything because a big part of me wants to be sleeping in the same bed as him, but I know that I should've made us change to separate beds.

The rehersal dinner was nice, but *A* and I got seated at this table of local couples and all of the people we know were sitting elsewhere. It made me feel uncomfortable because it was hard to make conversation with them (very loud). The person who I really hoped to see (and the only other female in the group of high school friends) didn't show up - - eventually we found that sometime came up at the last minute. I'm just not feeling chit chatty. And, then a bunch of people spoke tonight about the couple that's getting married and I realized that I don't even know them that well; I just feel wierd being at this wedding having not been at Sanchi's wedding, when she is a much older and dearer friend.

Don't get me wrong; I am really happy for my friend that is getting married. He has had some really rough times and he's pulled himself up out of them in a big struggle, and he's been very supportive of me and my struggles along the way as well. I'm really glad that I can be here to help celebrate. But, I feel really out of place - I don't feel comfortable in this yuppie world, especially when I am not sure what I'm doing with my life.

*A* got pretty drunk and went to talk to some of the guys. And I didn't have anyone to talk to so I just came back to the hotel to blog and work a bit. However, now I realize that I brought the wrong books with me, so I'm not even sure how I'll get work done this weekend! Augh!

I'm going to be independent and have a good time this weekend, I just don't like being in this coupledom situation with *A*, where it just makes me feel like we're together and then as if bruised when there are these realizations that it ain't gonna happen. And, its awkward that I can't be drinking at all when my friends are (alcohol can trigger a migraine). So, wish me luck, stregnth, and be jealous a bit that I'm getting a hot stone massage tomorrow and get to look amazing - - even if it seems that there aren't other single people here and *A* probably won't even notice. But, that's okay; it'll feel good to look good....and I think it seriously makes me feel a little nicely rebellious with the freshwater pearl bra straps!

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Thursday, November 16, 2006

Some Resolution: This Really is My Calling

I woke up feeling a lot better, although there's still some tension in my neck and shoulders. I went to therapy again today to work stuff out, and I feel a lot better. I guess that I was reading some into my therapist's response, and she isn't so gung ho about me quitting academia and studying sexual violence. Instead, we talked about trying to find some way to stay on my path while finding a way to have balance in my life. Part of that is going to have to be better communication about and enforcement of boundaries with my research team and my advisor in particular.

I made an appointment to meet with an osteopath - who supposedly can help with my shoulder/back problems and migraines by manipulating areas of my back with his hands - kind of like a chiropractor or physical therapist, but with different training. He will be very expensive, but is highly recommended, and my insurance should pay for half of the cost. Of course, only if I get a referral, which means I have to schlep up to campus, but that's okay.

Anyway, I still have a little risidual pain from the migraine - like it hasn't totally gone away - because its aggrivated by movement and by light. So I'm not sure what to do - maybe just bite the bullet and take an Imitrex? Maybe just try to take the homeopathic and Chinese medicine stuff that I have? Maybe its a bad idea to go to Denver and be flying and aggrivating things more?

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Woken Up from a Migraine and Cried During Massage

I woke up at 5am from intense pain from a migraine. I took the samples the neurologist gave me, and now I can't take the Imitrex until tomorrow, and I feel horrible again. Part of what caused this might have been that I ate some nuts yesterday, and maybe that elicted a response, and I've been fighting off the migraine since last Friday when I was in San Fran and there was a change in barometric pressure. I don't know. Clearly, this is all stress related.

Thinking that grad school makes the PTSD worse and that I need to find a new career, it just challenges me to the core. I feel really shaken and like I don't know what I'm doing with anything.

I got a massage today from this woman who gives me regular treatments, who in addition to being a massage therapist, is also a grad student in Pscyhology. She told me that she felt a lot of emotions in my back, and it made me just start crying. I kept crying through the rest of the session.

I read this book last night The Wounded Woman which talked about how some women who have negative relations with their fathers tend to become overachievers and use their achievements as amour for avoiding their real feelings and that because of that, they develop health problems including headaches, migraines, and IBS - all of which I suffer from. Now today I just feel really vulnerable and like I'm not sure how to overcome it. The book talked about getting in touch with your rage, which I've done a lot this year, but I feel like I just don't know what to do with all of this anymore.

Plus, it is the year anniversary of my mom getting diagnosed with Alzheimer's. I'm just feeling pretty overwhelmed. Maybe I should go to Denver this weekend for the wedding since flying triggers migraines. I just want the pain to go away!

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Tuesday, November 14, 2006

My Job and My Career Path: Background

So, in response to a comment yesterday about my research work, I figure that I should probably just explain all of this. Here's the situation with my work life:

I currently work 20 hours per week as the Project Manager (PM) of a large research project that involves multiple universities across the country. I work for three faculty members, one of which is my advisor. My involvement with this project started almost two years ago, when I took a class that involved hands on training doing interviews for the project. They asked me to coordinate the interviews done by other students and clearly liked my work. When I returned from Israel over a year ago, my advisor asked/told me that I would take on the role of PM. She said that they'll pay me fabulously (aka $20/hour which is pretty good for a grad student) and that they'll publish with me. They also pay my tuition and health insurance.

My research is something very different, something which I am very passionate about, but which involves sexual violence. I am very committed to this work, but my therapist thinks that it might be a bad idea for me to be doing it because it keeps me engaged with the topic instead of letting it go. Personally, I feel very strongly about the imporance of doing this work, and I think that it gives to me as well as being draining at times.

My advisor wants me to write my dissertation using the data from the project that I work on with her. Whether or not I do it, I still will work on it at least until this summer, and even longer if I really want to get publications out of it. The project is a really big career opportunity for me, which provides me not only with a great jump into being a professor, it also sets up space for me to be qualified to work as an administrator at a college campus.

However, all of this is really stressful. My therapist today confirmed what Kathy and I had been discussing - that graduate school and working in the academy trigger PTSD symptoms. She asked me today to think about other options, and honestly it is hard for me. I can picture working for a not for profit, but I imagine that the stress level there would be no better, if not worse. Maybe I could picture being a psychologist, but I want to work on a more macro level. I could picture being a writer, although that's a really risky business to get into without the academy credentials and support. Plus, I honestly love teaching; I would miss it. My story is nothing like the picture; or well, I guess it could be if I stick with it. But, I might be looking at making a loop and starting over with something different.

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Monday, November 13, 2006

Possibilities: A New Blog

I started a new blog tonight, which I don't intend to spend too much time posting to, but which will become a scrapbook of possibilities.


Sunday, November 12, 2006

The Problem is the Way I Take Things On

It has been awhile since I've blogged and now I feel like I don't know where to begin. I've just been running around so much lately trying to keep up with work, school, my trip this past weekend to San Francisco where I visited with friends from Israel, and my trip next weekend to Denver for another friend's wedding.

Last week my therapist suggested that maybe I've gotten really good at taking care of myself, but my problem is the way that I take things on OR in other words, the way that I've constructed my world. I've been thinking about it alot. I mean, there are all of these real, overwhelming problems in my life, but maybe there's something about me that's seeking them out unconsciously.

Here are some examples: My dad used to say that my outlook is "Why be difficult when you can be impossible?" I am torn between two countries - Israel and the U.S. I'm in a field that is a pressure cooker for at least the first 10-15 years. I only get serious about dating Jewish guys, and then I feel so pressured that I mess everything up. I've gotten drawn into a research project which is high pressure that isn't what I want to be doing. All of these little things add up to me not being able to be happy on a day to day basis. The present moment gets lost in all of these things that I try to do for my future, but which overcomplicate my life.

I recently spent some time with someone that I love pretty deeply, but who is completely unavailable. (Now you're wondering which of these people that I've mentioned in the past that I'm talking about.) It made me realize that I REALLY need to figure out how to love someone who IS available. I honestly don't know how to make this happen. But, the more that I lose my mom, the more I feel this gaping whole in my life; this lack of having family and someone to be there on a day to day basis to support and love.

In the meantime, I'm just exhausted and overwhelmed and kinda lonely and overly focused on trying to get my thesis done.

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Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Reality Check: Am I On the Right Path?

Yesterday, I met with a neurologist about the migraines I've been having, which was odd because these are the doctors that focus on Alzheimer's. He ordered some blood work and gave me a sample and told me to come back next month.

Then, I went to this local owned lingerie store that was nearby to clear my head. I showed the owner/manager the dress that I bought for the wedding and asked her what she suggest that I wear under it. She showed me this bra with attachable pearl straps, which looked completely goregous on. There was another woman working at the store, and they were both like drooling over how fabulous it looked together and yes, here' s my moment of pride, how great this made my chest look.

So, when she's ringing me up, she says, "now make sure that you take the straps off when you wash it, because these are the real deal." So, they're real freshwater pearls! It cost me $225, and I was in such shock that I just handed over my credit card.

The day before, I had made an appointment in Denver to have my hair done, massage, spa day basically before the wedding since I realized that this is going to be the only thing coming close to a vacation since last January, I think.

I feel really indulgent though, like maybe I'm going off the deep end with this. I normally hate shopping, hate these kind of events, try to out of the whole mentality of ME ME ME ME. I think I'm responding to feeling overwhelmed with work and school stuff and not being taken care of any more by my parents but needing to take care of them. And, I spend a lot of my time now in sweats or jeans, so getting dressed up and feeling really sexy, it just feels good. Plus, its hard going to this wedding with *A* where clearly everyone's going to be asking about our relationship and he's already warned me that he'll be blowing me off while we're there.

But, maybe I really need to return the dress and the bra and cancel the spa appointment and start being more "myself" - being low key, not spending a lot of money, not caring about how I look or what I wear. I feel really over indulgent to the point of selfish and kinda guilty about spending so much money on frivolous things. Maybe I need to find better ways to take care of myself? Maybe this is the voice of my father in my head and its worth it? I don't know; what do you think?

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Sunday, November 05, 2006

The Date: Total Disaster

So, I had run into the "nice guy" (hereby known as NG) Friday night at this bar. I went for a graduate student happy hour, and he and some co-workers just randomly happened to be there. The place was so packed that it was hard to move around, and I had just finessed my way through the entire place, only to find that NO one that I knew was there. So NG says hello and introduces me to a couple of co-workers (although it is somewhat hard to talk because it is loud). He says that they're going out for dinner, and I have to admit that I'm somewhat disappointed that he's going to leave me here alone.

Then, as we're talking, a woman that did some teacher training with me came over and we started talking. She and Stuart kinda nodded to each other as if they knew each other, and then Stuart completely disappeared. She seemed kinda awkward about the whole thing, and I got the sense that they had dated.

Then, as you can see from yesterday's post, I had to really drag myself out last night after a sad conversation with Mom, where it was clear that her condition is worsening. He had made a suggestion of where we should go for our first date and paid for it, I took the second date, so this was his turn, but he like couldn't be bothered to come up with anything. I mentioned that there was this movie that I wanted to see, and he sounded interested. So yesterday, before the date I purchased us tickets to the movie, and finally NG suggested this one Italian place (that is way highly over-rated and relatively cheap for the area).

We met in front of the Italian place (NG's idea), and he was in line to put our name down. They told us it would be 45 minutes (very normal for this area on a weekend), so NG said we should look at some places on the street near where he parked. The whole time, he seems just completely uninterested in anything that I try to say and has a hard time making conversation himself.

The dinner was painful (although the food was good). I asked NG about the woman from the bar, and he said that they had gone out, and then he never called her. (LOVELY - and a clear sign that he's not interested in developing connections with people, only a RELATIONSHIP.)

I pointed out that he seemed "tired", and he was all like offended and says, I would say the same about you. I told him that I had a rough conversation with my mom, and he says "So what does she remember when you talk to her?" It was such a broad question, I wasn't even sure how to answer.

It only gets worse. NG says: "So the movie is about Israel?"

Me: "No, its about Nazi Germany." NG goes on about how he made some comment to his dad comparing Bush and Hitler, and the dad got upset, but NG couldn't understand why. (Um, hello, I don't like Bush either but that's offensive, especially to a Jewish person.) Later, NG makes some comment that he's not sure if the Jewish population will ever be what it was because the population is declining and the real problem is that some Jews don't want to have kids after seeing how bad the world can be. I say, actually the reason for the decline recently is inter-marriage and that people aren't raising their kids Jewish. NG: "I hope so."

At that point, I wonder what the hell he is even thinking. I mean, hello, he's not Jewish; I am. He's probably not willing to put anything into raising his kids Jewish, so....Anyway, at this point, I told him that I'm not up for seeing a Holocaust movie and that I just want to go home. He hugs me, awkwardly, and we leave. I doubt that I'll hear from him again. Nor, do I want to. I think there's a lesson here, and I'm not exactly sure what it is. It does make me think about questions posed in previous posts about how relationships are supposed to work.

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Saturday, November 04, 2006

Conversation with Mom: She's Clearly Getting Worse

I called Mom yesterday at the facility. She sounded really anxious. "Are you coming over?" she asked me. I told her that I was in school in California, so I can't come now, and she sounded really nervous, like she was freaking out and alone. I felt so horrible. "Your other daughter, Julie, is going to come over though tonight though; don't worry."

"Oh Julie's coming over? That's good. I better go then and wait for her." It was still early, probably hours before Julie would show up. Actually, I wasn't sure that she was planning on coming, but I didn't know what else to say. I tried to call my sister but she immediately put my niece on the phone and then someone came over to their house.

I called Julie today, and she said that when she got to Mom's, that Mom was waiting for her just right in front of the elevator. She told me that she'd call me tonight when she's at Mom's so that I can talk to her again.

They just called, and Julie put Mom on the phone. Me: "Hi Mom, it's [Karma]."

"Yes [Karma]."

"Is Julie their with your grandaughter?"

To Julie: "Is that...?" I hear Julie say yes, that's your granddaughter. Mom repeats "that's my granddaugther. She's here with my cousin Julie."

Me: (I know that this has been really bothering my sister) "That's your daughter, Julie. I'm your daughter, [Karma], and that's my sister Julie, your other daughter."

Mom: "I know. And you're in college."

Me: (feeling bad for correcting her and happy that she remembers that I'm in school) "and you probably had dinner with your husband tonight at Outback Steakhouse and had a steak, baked potato, and salad."

Mom: "Yes."

Me: "He's a creature of habit, huh?"

Mom: (little laugh) "Yes. The girl is playing with old phone that's not working. It is a...a...typewriter."

Me: "I remember when you would type things on a type writer when you were a secretary."

Mom: "And a bookkeeper. My husband has his office upstairs, and my office is downstairs. (This was true in their house, but Mom's office was moved upstairs too a few years ago. Of course, it isn't her office anymore.) I file his paperwork and take care of things....Julie's going to tuck me into bed tonight (sounding happy)."

Anyway, I can't even go on with the conversation; it just makes me cry. How does she remember some things and not others? These memories of hers are from a few years ago and then from being a little girll I thought that the memories disappeared more chronologically. It breaks my heart that she's disappearing more and more each day. She told Julie last week that she had to get home because her parents would be worried about her because they don't know where she is. I hate when she's upset or nervous or feeling alone or scared. I wish that I could be there with her.

I have to pull myself together and go out on my third date with the "nice guy". We're having dinner at a romantic Italian restaurant and then going to a movie about the Holocaust. I don't know honestly if I'll be able to sit through it, especially so late at night. I don't even want to go out at all, but I'm going to try to force myself to have a good time. I did have a nice morning with *A* and my dog - he had coffee with her while I worked out and then we had brunch. I also did a lot of work today. (Can you tell that I'm trying to be positive?)

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Thursday, November 02, 2006

A Surreal and Wild Night and Another Migraine

Last night, my research team went out to a local casino for drinking, a seafood buffet, and gambling. Now, personally, I don't enjoy casinos. I never have. And, I've never gambled in the past; also just don't like it. But, my advisor decided on the plans. She even acknowledged on the email planning it that she knows that I don't eat shellfish (its a Jewish thing).

Whatever, it was a beautiful drive up there, and I was grateful that another team member offered to drive the 45 minute drive to the casino. Because of county laws, they only allow drinking in their most expensive restaurant and only if you order food. So, we pounded through a couple of drinks and ate some fries before going over to the buffet.

Now, I have been trying to eat lots of brown rice, whole grains, and lots of vegetables lately in order to avoid migraines. And, I've been avoiding alcohol. But, I decided that I should just go with it. I mean, it was a real honor that they included me, and I know that it is rare for grad students to be given the opportunity to social with professors, especially as senior ones as in my research team. But, it was strange that they expected me to pay for all of this - we each spent $45 for drinks, fries, and the buffet.

There was smoking in the casino, which makes me feel half kinda sick and half like I want to buy a pack of cigarettes. Everyone went their own way, and I found this Israeli couple. When I told them what I study, they started going on and on about how the President of Israel, Moshe Katzav is clearly innocent because, well basically they don't believe in acquaintance rape or that it is possible to rape someone if you haven't beaten the woman beforehand and she goes directly to the cops afterwards (which is rare). And, I'm sitting there thinking about how they're basically saying that they wouldn't believe my story (that what happened to me was raped).

We were there all in all for 6 hours. Towards the end, the team ended up giving me $50 to go gabmle with, which was very nice, and which I quickly lost. But, I woke up today with what felt like maybe it was a hangover, but which has developed into a migraine.

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