the waiting is the itchy part

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Wednesday, January 24, 2007
This morning I woke up thinking of that Tom Petty song The Waiting. (everybody wakes up with a song stuck in their head/heart, right? RIGHT??) Why this song? Well, I do have a soft spot for Tom Petty, but I think this particular song was playing because I am doing a lot of in general waaaaayaaating right now. Everything in my ENTIRE LIFE is waiting (or so it seems) and it is making me crazy. er. Crazier. I know, I know -- time to turn that frown upside down and look on the bright side blah blah blah -- but I feel like someone replaced the inside of my skin with a cheap wool sweater and I am itchy itchy itchy. Not so much that it hurts, but I can't think of anything else. I have a waiting rash! An allergy to TIME. (okay, maybe not an allergy to time. although now I'm curious to know what would be the cure for an allergy to time? death? ointment? dietary supplements?)

Most of this waiting stuff is good. It's the next necessary step after some important first steps, and I have no doubt things will get moving soon. (although it is disconcerting when even my horoscope is all "think good thoughts, wait for years, and we'll see!") I know what has put the itching powder in my underpants: the evil elephant in my brain with an unending supply of itching powder is what. It's my freaking unknown final hospital bill -- 3 days in the hospital with no insurance causes its own special stressy hell. It's only money. If one has to have a problem, a problem that money can solve is better than a problem that no amount of money can solve, right? AND YET. I think if I just had a final number, I'd be fine. I know that it's right around 11,000 dollars as it stands, but my Financial Statement is currently under review. The hospital may knock a small or large portion off of the bill (they write off millions of dollars like this every year for the uninsured) or they may not knock any off at all. Obviously, I hope that they DO, but I will deal with what I have to deal with -- I just hate not knowing what that is!

You know what else? GWB can go directly to hell for any number of reasons, but wanting to tax insurance benefits should get him there a little bit faster. (giant incoherent rant deleted. summary of GIR: We need Universal Health Care in this country.)

In less itchy news, The New York Times has an interesting article on magical thinking. I do it a lot, but more as a method of self-comfort (which they talk about) than a compulsion. I'm not to the point where I can't function if I'm not wearing my lucky shoes or whatever (I have no lucky garments! see? I'm not crazy), but I will admit that a crappy day can be turned right around if I see someone carrying a book that says YES in huge letters or some other "sign." Anyway, it's an interesting article and I contend that indulging in that kind of thought in moderation is not only not-dangerous, it's beneficial to your mental health! AND way cheaper and less dangerous than other forms of self-comfort, like say.. heroin or krispy kreme donuts. (you know why I hate krispy kreme? There are many reasons, so I'll just hit the highlights: 1) I despise, despise that kind of kreativ spelling. It makes me go from serene to stabby in seconds. 2) to the krispy kreme evangelists: it's just a donut, people!! Maybe it's even a delicious donut, but seriously -- a DONUT! ) (did I mention that I feel itchy all over? It's sort of like ingesting waaaay too much caffeine.)

on that note: something to consider -- do you think it is possible to "think too much?" People say this to me, and on the one hand I know that I can over-think certain things (really? not you, jen!), but seriously... think too much? It's like saying "you breathe too much" -- it doesn't make any sense! That's what we DO. Just like lungs are for breathing, brains are for thinking, right? If people aren't thinking all the time then what the hell are they doing? (I don't mean necessarily deep thinking or profound thoughts -- just, you know, THINKING about stuff. ) I don't get it. If you can explain it to me, please do so. I promise I will think about it, but not too much (as if!) or too little -- just the right amount.
13 comments on "the waiting is the itchy part"
  1. If the thinking is making you crazy, it's too much! But maybe not too much thinking, per se, but too much thinking about the thing that's making you crazy! But on the other hand, meditation is supposed to be SUPER good for you both mentally and physically and the whole point of it is NOT thinking. So...maybe there IS such a thing as thinking too much in general.

  2. hmmm... you make a good point. The part that drives me crazy isn't the thinking so much as the NOT KNOWING. Sometimes you just have to wait. I'm usually a fairly patient person -- I know that things happen when they happen, that me staring at the mailbox will not get them to send me the decision any faster -- but I feel like I'm waiting on SO MUCH all at once, I'm completely off-kilter.

    I think (ha ha!) what I need to figure out for myself is a way to cut off negative/obsessive thoughts before they completely ruin my day and I have to rely on magical thinking to jolly myself back to baseline. I don't think I would feel like myself at all if it was just BLANK in there all the time. (for all my bitching, I generally enjoy being who I am.)

    .. but maybe learning (which involves thinking!) how to quiet my mind when necessary would be a good thing. I have to admit I do enjoy the little bit of guided meditation that's on my yoga DVD. (even though I had to do it 10 times before I stopped thinking "relax my eyeballs?! you're kidding, right??"

  3. Krispy Kreme donuts are indeed just donuts. No different than Albertson's(it's your store)really. As far as too much thinking...frig. I have no words of advice about that. I can hardly get me mind to shut down to sleep let alone anything else. And, with my back pain FINALLY getting less annoying I get a call from my temp place telling me that the place that didn't want to hire me wants me back for another 3 months. But as a temp. I know that they are totally trying to take advantage of me but I need to have the money so I can go back to school. It just seems sometimes that it's too much. I mean everything. And not all suicidal, just, like, I don't know. People say that when god closes a door she opens a window, right? It would be nice if the window wasn't worse than the closed door. And this cat is driving me crazy...

  4. If there is a next time you have to go to hospital, go to Providence. They are THE hospital to go to if you can't pay and they have very cute male nurses. At least the one in Milwaukie does. Which I know is not that important at the moment, but it does help during the fact. Because when you are all doped up and you are almost naked and icky it helps to have a sweet face. I ramble. I am just bored out of my mind...

  5. BBD -- switch it around in your head so instead of being on the Taken Advantage Of side of the table, you are on the Using Them to Get What You Need side. I am, of course, the world's largest hypocrite to be dispensing such advice. I got ANOTHER bill from the hospital yesterday (this one around 800 dollars for the emergency room doctor) and generally feel like the butt-end of some universal prank. I am deeply hopeful that these feelings are PMS related and I'll get back to whatever state of equinimity is available to me.

    Maybe it is time to meditate!

  6. Yes, you offer some sage advice. I know that I need this job. I just hate that I need it at all. If I had stayed in school and just got more into debt I wouldn't need it. Blech. It is what it is, which is an expression I can hardly stomach.

  7. Less introspective than everyone elses comments, but my song this morning was Don't Fence Me In - Cole Porter. I am not sure who in my head was singing it, but I listened to the Ella version on the way to work. YAY for Cole Porter!!!

  8. Cole Porter indeed rocked, as did Ella, as did "Radio On" that I picked up from library yesterday and read it last night. It wasn't super great, but it was fun to read that NPR people drove her crazy.

  9. About magical thinking: I think that magical thinking frees us up from overwhelmingly negative feelings so that we can function. It keeps us sane. While prayers and rituals may not influence the outcome, they keep hope and optimism alive. Which, come to think about it, may influence the outcome.

    About Krispy Kremes: They are very good if you have not had homemade donuts made with fresh ingredients that you have fried yourself in pure, non-transfat oil. Every time I eat one I am disappointed. Though not as much as by other donuts. So there is that....

  10. I kept thinking of your post and had to revisit it.

    I HATE IT that a short stay in the hospital racked up such a horendous bill and hope that after they finally get around to reviewing it for Lord's sake that it is more reasonable. Affordable, even.

    I've been known to think too much, too, believe it or not. As in fixate on a problem, and then worry, fret, and agonize over it--drive it into the ground. As you say, it is the not knowing that gets us every time. Living with uncertainty is a bitch.

  11. MQ: I love that song! I love the ella version, and of course the david byrne version on red, hot and blue.

    BBD: glad you liked Radio On. I thought that NPR stuff was funny too.

    Patty: I agree that positive thinking can affect outcomes, but there has got to be balance somehow. Like optimistic, but not blindly optimistic. Or something. ( I have this whole theory about self-fulfilling prophecies that keeps rattling around in my head. one day I may be able to make it coherent enough to put in writing)

    as for KK -- I never said they were BAD, I'm just saying that no matter how good they may or may not be...they're still just a donut and not the cure to all ills that many KK fanatics claim them to be.

    hospital bill -- argh! I'll keep you updated on how it all shakes down.

    I agree that uncertainty's a bitch, but what in life is certain? (death, taxes, and...?)

  12. heh heh. I knew you would see through that "uncertainty is a bitch" line.

  13. I hope that hospital will "forgive" your bill. That is just too much money, although I am sure that your life is priceless, so no amount would be too much to save it, right? I think that what I am meaning to say is that we need universal health care. I mean, you know, Canada does it and, well, they all look healthy. And Mike Meyers is funny.


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