In February water started dripping through my living room’s bay window. That meant emergency work to remove built-up ice, using every pot I owned to catch the water, damage to the drywall and woodwork, and dealing with insurance and contractors.
In April I got a roommate. A male roommate, named Travis, who is about 40 years younger than me. Our agreement is that he will help with cooking, cleaning and heavy work in return for reduced rent. This is a good thing, but still a stressful adjustment.
In May I found out that my dock – just a small wooden dock that juts out into the lake behind my house – is beyond repair and will have to be replaced.
Near the end of May I learned that I need a new roof.
And one morning I woke up and thought how easy it would be to kill myself.
That scared me shitless. I have never been suicidal. Ever. I wasn’t suicidal THEN, either, but just the fact I even had the thought was enough to frighten me into crisis. My best friend was home, and came within 5 minutes of my phone call. She held me while I cried and cried and cried. We talked about what I needed to do. I knew two things: I needed help from my son and my brother.
I called them both that afternoon. I paid for Joey, my son, to come and spend a few days with me (especially needed because my roommate and my best friend were both going out of town), and asked my brother for practical help dealing with the contractors and the insurance company. He willingly agreed.
The next day I had a scheduled appointment with my psychiatrist, who put me on two-a-day tranquilizers. Joey helped me get my paperwork organized in a way that gave me direction.
Then I smashed my driver’s side exterior mirror on the way home from taking him to the airport, which was a setback. Sigh.
I just about lost it again when water started seeping up out of my yard. It is a leaking “buffalo box,” some sort of junction thing in the water system. I don’t know yet whether repairs will be on my nickel or be paid for by the county. I sat down with my roommate when that problem came along and talked till I could calm down again.
But I’ve survived. The tranquilizer – Klonopin (clonazepam) – helps a lot. My doctor says it’s an anxiety issue, not a bipolar one, anyway.
Now I’m able to keep a running to-do list. Everything goes on it, from catching up with taxes to getting a manicure to paying property taxes. And everything that’s done goes to the bottom, so I can see what I’ve accomplished. Right now there are 20 in the “to do” section and 33 in the “done” section.