The butterfly diaries

Arrythmia? Your heart was fluttering? I had that at the end of my cold from hell. I blamed all the massive amounts of cold meds I'd been taking for 2 weeks. We have Dayquil and Nyquil here, liquids? There's an ingredient that can cause higher blood pressure. I am already on meds for hbp (runs in the fam). So I had an evening where my heart was fluttering for a couple hours, I was sweaty-palmed, I felt a bit dizzy on and off.

My mom died of heart afibrillation, when she ignored those same symptoms. She was only 74. I am 68! So I went to the ER. I was fine and had my last increased heart rate when the EMTs were checking me out, even before I got in the ambulance, but I spent the night and next day til the afternoon in the ER anyway. Damn those gurneys are uncomfortable. But I am glad I got myself checked out. I got on 3 new meds. One for my heart rate, to keep it nice and low, and one blood thinner (because I have a coagulation factor in my blood, also an inherited thing, and if I get a-fib it can cause clots), and one to lower cholesterol, because it was just a tad high (it's always been fine before). sigh...

I had an echocardiogram in the ER, and another a week or so later. I made an appointment with a cariologist, but couldn't be seen til the end of April!

Anyway, you're a lot younger than me, so I hope your heart is okay!!
We don't have Dayquil or Nyquil here sadly, all I've had is paracetamol and ibuprofen. Yep fluttery heart, it's a lifelong thing but gets worse when I either do too much strenuous cardio (no fear there now) or I'm sick. I wore a Holter monitor for a couple of weeks about 20 years ago and they discovered I was just having ectopic beats, nothing to worry about, just makes me feel like rubbish sometimes. It's never been caught on an ECG when it's been bad enough to send me to bed to rest, so my doc says I'm still good for a few more miles. Honestly, if I wasn't, the only thing I'd be mad about is not getting to spend more time in person with Puck. As for the current bug, today I feel even worse than yesterday so go figure. But I haven't noticed my heart doing stupid things although I'm wiped out (of energy) so perhaps it has been. I'm bored of being sick, I just want to get better now.
Ah, pixi had the tendency towards afib too, and has since she was a child. "Hole in the heart," to use layman's terms. She's seen a cardiologist since I've known her, and they say it's pretty common and she's fine. And she's younger, in her mid-40s (like you, I guess), so it's no big deal, as of yet.

You know I was wicked sick in October and Dec-Jan, so I feel your pain. I'm just feeling more myself in the past week or two. I even went for a trail walk with pixi last week and did better than I thought I would. Such a relief.

Good luck! Don't overdo!
Back to work today and it was a day out and about. I didn't participate in the high ropes, sadly, but I did go swimming. I've clearly spent longer than usual on my feet because they are killing me! At least I got to talk with Puck this morning, that's a change from the last few Mondays, and it set a great tone for my day. I haven't been able to reach Adam this evening, but his brother might have already arrived so I'm not surprised.

I've got a few conversations going on Feeld at the moment but god some people just open so very wrong.

I keep getting bitten but it's not fleas as they aren't in pairs, and it's only like one a day. So weird.

I bought a benchtop oven/dehydrator/fan forced fryer (not precisely and air fryer but it does a pretty good job of things that would be air fried). I was finding excuses not to eat properly, so this will help a lot.

But tonight, all I've got the energy for is cereal. It's been a humongous work day.
I'm fighting a chest infection at the moment, but Adam has been visiting since Friday night until a few hours ago and we've been celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary. It's been really good. Well, except the Saturday night dinner with my parents part, but that was always going to be challenging. Friday night dinner and Sunday lunch (both just the two of us) were fantastic. I was truly sad to see him go. So, that places it at around two month recovery time from living in a small town, working at a shitty school (with some amazing students and staff, but still shitty overall), and being so unhappy with life in general I would not have been mad if I got hit by a bus, which would be a feat in a town that had maybe two intercity buses a day.

I'm obviously recovering. There's still some way to go. And although we didn't have deep talks, we talked about possible future plans in the 1-3 year realm. I'm the one now on a one year contract, I will 100% get a job next year (I'm a Math teacher after all) but we don't know where and financing x/y/z might depend on my employment status. Right now, we're trying to finance him into a new (well, used) car. I don't think I can possibly explain to anyone living not half a world from manufacturing sites how expensive vehicles are in Aotearoa NZ. Used. Let alone new. I will never own a new car in my life. Ever. But Adam has made a deposit on a car while he applies for finance at a special rate through our bank (the car yard lender would happily have approved a loan today for somewhere around 23% p/a for 5 years but our bank is offering 1% p/a for 3 years. No brainer, just time to process.

And for anyone wondering what Aotearoa NZ is...It is New Zealand and Aotearoa is the recognized indigenous name. British colonization has done such a "good job" that I actually asked my students the other day that if we are "New" Zealand, where "old" Zeeland is...and they didn't know. One hesitated a guess at Britain. Fuck me sideways (yes, that's an expression of disbelief here, no, I did not say it out loud in class).

I am inspired to make a general knowledge mission out of my homeroom. My mum was HUGE on me having a general knowledge. It slightly drove me nuts as a child, but I value it deeply now.

I miss Puck. I sent him a text telling him I miss him (we haven't spoken since what...Thursday afternoon and it's now Saturday evening) because our relationship is a daily one and for once, it's me, not him, out of availability and he's "getting a taste of his own medicine" and although I miss him too, a lot, I hope he has recognized, even a little, what it's like for me when he has to disappear for a WEEK at a time let alone a few days.

BTW, I've changed my entire post to American spelling because I'm not in the mood to see all the red squiggly underlines when I use an "s" and not a "z" but if anyone knows how to change this forum to British English, I'd be much obliged...says the tech-not-savvy mod.
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By the end of next week, there's a good chance that Adam will have a new car, well, a second hand car because you don't want to know what brand new cars are worth here...but it's still expensive enough we're financing it through the bank. I've got very little to do with it since we've separated our living expenses, I just had to have a chat with the bank since I'm legally a co-borrower.

Now the bulk of the organisation is over, I'm starting to wonder if I'm going to resent that he gets yet another thing while I've only had one trip to the US and have no clue what I'm doing next year. But I'm also still happy enough in Hometown that I think I'll be fine for a while at least. I really like this job, so this year shouldn't be too arduous. I'll try to save a lot of money so I do have choices next year. I guess the only thing that would actually bother me is if I end up having to pay off the car myself with my travel money, but if that's happening, there's likely to be bigger issues anyway.

I've stopped crying when talking with Puck. I think that means I've mostly finished grieving the loss of in person time. When I started telling myself that he's just like Trask and Lance - that he'll actually never come here - it got easier to hang out with him. I will probably go back there (I'd like to teach in the US if I can get the right position), but with very low expectations that he'd even be able to visit me interstate.

I know he still thinks he'll visit me here, this year even, but I've had to stop believing it, for my own sanity.
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I have a first date tonight. He's already confirmed so yay, except I'm soooo tired. But we're going to a yummy restaurant (my pick) so hopefully the food will perk me up. I don't think it will be a long night. The conversation has been good in text, but who knows how it will be in person. And he's another shift worker, similar to Adam, so I expect we'll only have a weekend line up occasionally. The logistics may end up too difficult, except at least I'm getting my car back soon! He lives over an hour away by public transport, and longer by car when there are traffic jams, although much shorter when it's flowing.

It's a beautiful evening here and I'll be able to walk to and from the restaurant no problem. I've been walking so much and it's working. I'm not losing weight super fast but I am losing it. I want to learn now to ride an electric scooter ...this kind: 🛴, too, they are for hire all over the city and the neighbour often leaves one outside his place when he gets home.

Oh, and The Nomad has pencilled in our next date. I truly thought he really wouldn't be back down this way but he has something else happening that weekend so he offered to come down a day early or stay late. I said early (a Thursday) is good as I can generally make it through one more day of work if I'm tired. We don't have chemistry, we have physics lol. (We are both deliberate energy workers in bed).

Tomorrow is laundry and parents and I've been thinking about doing my essential school work on Saturday afternoons so that frees up Sunday. We'll see how that goes. I really want to remember to go to a shop in town to try and get a perfume matched, I need a little push to getting back to looking after my appearance, and scent is a powerful thing to motivate and remind me. I also need to get a watch battery. It shouldn't be this hard, but there's nowhere walkable to do it so I'm going to have to do it as a separate mission. The mundane amongst the slightly less ordinary. People who aren't polyamorous themselves tell me my life sounds so interesting...but it's not when you're just living it. It's still mostly work and chores.

Update: now that's how a first date should go 😉
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Well, I didn't do any school work this weekend and I'm good with that. I can always do some late nights this week. Today I changed my mobile phone service provider, and got a new screen protector and case. I feel like I've got a whole new phone lol. It's nearly three years old so it's doing great. I really appreciated being able to do a little retail therapy. I have one more big annoying expense coming up, but after that, hopefully I can get into a rhythm of saving plenty.

A lot of people unloaded on me this weekend, The Nomad, Puck, Adam and Gaze. This morning, I made Puck listen to some of my concerns for this year, and next. A hard life is going around right now, but we all just keep taking one day at a time.
So...roll call:

Ayin's been a lot more chatty (in text) recently. He's at a really pointy end of his cancer treatment and it is hit or miss as to whether it's going to work. He told me yesterday that this is the last attempt at curative measures, and he's expecting to get very sick over the course of it. We'll likely text quite a bit over this coming week as he's in 12 hour chemo each day, and I have Covid, so I'm in isolation for the week. It's got to be at least 14 months since I've seen him in person. Before he got diagnosed, I guess he had cancer for quite a while as he would always put me off because he wasn't feeling up to me visiting. Nova told me about someone she knew who, before they were diagnosed, always seemed to need a three day weekend. He'd get grief at work for calling off on Mondays (because we do know it's a bad look) but it was actually part of the undiagnosed, untreated cancer. I'm pretty sure that Ayin will let me come visit when we're both healthy enough again, even if he's moved to palliative. But they're hitting his cancer with everything they've got, so fingers crossed for a remission.

Adam came to collect his new car (and return mine) yesterday. He did a pile of groceries for me while he was here thank goodness, because no-one is ever perfectly prepared for immediate isolation, but obviously he didn't stay the night like the original plan.

I have also (obviously) had to cancel on The Nomad this Thursday, which sucks big time. I was really looking forward to him again.

I talk with Puck a lot, but the other day I actually noticed a change in his body shape...he's being going to the gym and it's truly starting to show in his shoulders. He's looking more like Mike (who has a job that means his shoulders are absolutely solid). It makes me want to change my body shape to be as hot as he is lol.

Mike's been quite chatty lately, too. I have suspicions as to why, but it's nice that he's engaging with me more. I'll always have a crush on him, but after, what, 7 1/2 years? we're pretty damn good friends, too.

And there's a new guy I had a casual hook up with who I'm going to call Occic (say it however you wish, it's actually an acronym for Orange Chocolate Chip Ice Cream) who reached out just to touch base. That's a good sign for a second date sometime when I'm better.
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I'm feeling a lot worse today. I've slept a lot more and I'm still tired. I move, even roll over, and my heart rate shoots up. My sinuses are painful, which is so different to last time, but it's been 1 1/2 years so this strain is much different, I'm sure.

I forced myself to get up and do some work, then binged comfort food, then, miracle of miracles, I have just spoken with Lance.

He reckons he'll be in touch a little more. We'll see.
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Oh, are you saying you have Covid again??
Yep. Given my job it's quite remarkable it's been this long, but yeah, I've got COVID again, sigh.
I hope it's not too bad!
What I don't understand is how I can feel both better and worse at the same time. The sinus symptoms have mostly cleared up and the vibrations from speaking aren't making me want to fall asleep anymore. But my chest hurts more and I'm really dizzy when I am anything but horizontal, well, I'm dizzy even lying down tbh. I really hope this all goes away over the weekend, I'd like to get back to work.
I got a negative test already, yay, but I still feel really...wrong. Zero appetite, I have to force myself to eat and drink. Dizzy and bad tinnitus, strange abdominal cramps that feel like period cramps except I'm in the wrong part of my cycle for that. My chest doesn't hurt as much today so I must be on the mend. I did end up getting the ambulance last night, but I didn't need to go to hospital. They did a full work up to make sure I wasn't actually at risk of heart or lung issues overnight, and then, eventually, I slept a while. That I didn't get sleepy until like 3 am last night also indicates I must actually be getting better. I can't yet go expend energy though so I'm going to have to rely on getting tired tonight.

But today, I'll eat, albeit reluctantly, and try to sit up more despite this dizziness.

I really can't see myself being ready for work on Monday 😞
Okay, it wasn't quite negative after I left it for ages and it continued developing on the table. Still a faint line.

This morning, I woke up feeling so bad I actually went back to sleep (I reckon in self defense so my brain didn't have to deal with how bad the nausea was). But since then, I've actually gotten up and showered today, yes first time in a week. Flatmate has picked up some juice for me at the supermarket, so that's really kind. I'm pretty proud of myself for apparently not giving him COVID. I've been wearing a mask and using hand sanitizer every time I leave my room. I've also been using a different hand towel in the bathroom, and I've generally been as careful as I can be.

I've said I'm going to the doctor tomorrow rather than work. I am not fit enough to deal with over 100 students in one day, and colleagues, yet. Or the stairs, dear god the stairs. I honestly couldn't walk to the corner store yet, let alone spend a day at work.

Puck is on a "work weekend" at his (co-owned) campground so he's not around for a couple of days, which hopefully means that by the time I see him again I'll be able to sit up for the conversation. I've been getting really dizzy when I've tried to talk with him and ended up having to lie down.

Adam has a group of friends visiting him this weekend although he has talked about possibly coming down once they are gone. It would be wonderful to have the company.

And my bff has just sent me a picture of a crochet shawl and wool choices as she wants to make me one for my birthday. I want to cry because it just reminds me how neurotypical folk function. She's introverted, but she's step parented for years while progressing her career A LOT and supporting her husband while he started his own business (now thriving). And on top of this, she keeps chickens, gardens, lives with chronic pain after a botched IUD insertion, and creates arts and crafts.

I struggle in my job daily, will never have career progression beyond getting just a little better at what I do, and can't focus on anything long enough to finish even one project these days because even with HRT, perimenopause has made it so much worse.

Knowledge has been really empowering for some aspects of the very probable ADHD (getting a formal diagnosis is NZ is time consuming, expensive, and pretty much pointless for me as I'd be highly unlikely to get meds anyway) but knowledge doesn't make the exhaustion any less.

Maybe I'll change career again some time, but right now, I need this level of financial security. I'll seriously consider part time in the future, though. That, I could cope with.
Thanks for the validation, Albert. It helps to have someone I "know" say something, rather than the general internet narrative.

There's actually a guy in my department at work who is open about being ADHD and medicated. He's only 30, though so it makes sense for him. It's eye opening watching someone else eat everything in sight, too - clearly a coping mechanism for both of us. I don't want to eat like that, it's just very hard to control.

I had a burst of energy this morning and used it to do a little stretching. I'm stiff at the best of times but after a week in bed...ooof.

As it turns out, one of the people I play a silly online game with is a European who teaches in the US and she was giving me some information on getting employed over there. By next payday I should have enough money to get my qualifications assessed for international conversion. From there, it's plain sailing apparently. The visa part gets taken care of by the hiring school. I just need a hiring school lol. She reckons the hardest part would be the change of school year (different start month). But she also thinks that because I teach mathematics, there's a good chance I will be able to pick up a mid year position.

Or I'll just stay here, save more money, maybe have Puck visit, and hopefully visit him again. I just don't know right now, and this is not the week to be making decisions. Hell, I can't even decide what to do for my birthday in a couple of weekends lol.

Right now, it's time to rest again.
I'm still fatigued but that's to be expected. I'm going to take a few days for mental health and visit Adam. The drive will likely wipe me out for the rest of today, but I'll be able to enjoy Thursday - Saturday (and come back on Sunday). And there are a few things I can accomplish on Thursday day and then visit Nova (and her fiancée) on Thursday night.

Now it's coming up to the new financial year, I'm reducing my budget in the aim of saving a lot more. I want to be able to choose what to do with next year and money is the only way to make that happen.