I was social again today.  I went to an annual bbq/birthday party, usually featuring a lot of booze and food.  There were both, today, and I indulged in some of each. In the past I've drunk a lot, but that was much easier when home was still within staggering distance.  Keeping in mind that I did have to drive myself home, I'm pretty proud of myself that I had only one alcohol unit today.  Anxiety was kicking me about this event, but not as hard (since hey, I've done this before, so it's not so new-scary-new).  I had been thinking about bringing Mexican lasagna (MexiLas, as it's known in some circles) but decided that I was going to be selfish and make it to share it with D.  I brought my fallback items instead: carrot chips, goat cheese, hummus, and brie, aka the Ecstatic Cult of Hummus and Brie.  I had a plan this time.  I decided not to show up at the stated start time because I knew I'd be prone to drinking more (since I'd gotten there so early) and feel like I needed to keep drinking to keep being social.  So I spent most of my morning distracting myself from thinking about going to an event yet again.  

I finished prepping the chicken I'd baked last night.  I am so glad I have a bunch of non-latex gloves. The sensation of greasiness on my hands when I debone cooked chicken gives me the shudders.  I hate thinking I'm transferring a bunch of schmaltz from my hands onto everything I touch until I can scrub it all off.  Since they're still mostly numb, I wouldn't know if they were completely clean without practically parboiling them and drenching them with dish soap. Gloves are such a convenience.

Day 24:

I was going to walk out of the house in the first shirt I put on today, a black ladies XL one that fits me pretty well. But as I was putting on my makeup I kept looking at the the design on the front and frowning at it.  It's got a silver pentagram with the words "earth, air, fire, water, wiccan spirit" wrapping around it twice.  And I can get down with earth, air, fire, and water, but not so much with the wiccan spirit, because I'm not religious at all.  I envy other people their faiths, but I do not believe (and haven't since I was about seven years old; yes, I experienced depression long before I got to be that age).  I think it's a side effect of the depression, which makes me ultra-rational (and ultra-pessimistic) about certain things (faith is doomed to go unrewarded, hope will always be disappointed).  I felt it would be wrong for me to wear this shirt, because I know that certain people at the party would start to ask me about wicca, and I'd have to tell them that I don't know anything about it and that I'm just wearing the shirt because I'm an appropriative boor.  It's why I don't wear stuff with crosses on them, either.  And I might wear a shirt with "namaste" written on it because I do enjoy yoga sometimes, but I made a conscious decision during my college years that I wouldn't be a walking billboard for anything I didn't personally support.  Part of that came from a decided distaste for designer label clothing/status symbols that my family couldn't afford to buy me as a teenager, growing up in status-conscious OC.  The fact that I didn't fit into designer clothing was a contributing factor.   But it was also impressed upon me that I wasn't worth spending that kind of money on (but my mother spent that kind of money on herself and on my sister).  The wiccan spirit shirt is now in the Go-Away Bag.  I settled on a paisley one to go in.

I did not flake out today.  I almost did, but I didn't flake.  I had arranged to carpool down to Santa Maria for the Bernie Sanders rally, and I had a mini panic attack about going while I was walking down the hallway last night .  I kept clicking over to FB messages to let the driver know he didn't have to stop for me, and then clicking back away.  Last night was an exercise in distracting myself for long enough to click away from the message page.  My brain wouldn't really let me leave it alone, so eventually I would click back.  I managed a good long distraction by dying my hair.  It's been months and my two-inch roots have been unsettling me for a while.  Grooming is about self-care and I haven't felt like doing it for a long while.  Because self-care is for other people.  

At least I got to bed at a relatively early hour.  When I woke up this morning (at seven sharp!) my panic levels were still at a simmer. Thanks to my slowly rising anxiety levels, I was ready to go an hour and a half early.  I had to keep talking myself out of talking myself out of going.  I finally asked myself out loud "What is the worst that could happen?"  I immediately came up with the sun exploding, which is inherently ridiculous.  Then I asked what was the next worst thing that could happen.  A witnessing a successful assassination attempt (also ridiculously unlikely).  After a few more goes with the ridiculous, I ventured into more realistic territory.  The worst likely thing was that we would get turned away at the door because we'd gotten there too late, and we'd all go out to lunch.

Letting someone else drive was hard.  Letting someone else dictate the time we set out was hard.  Being around all those people was hard.  Speech was worth being there for though. And the sun didn't blow up.  At least not all of it all at once.

Day 23:

While I was looking for appropriate cargo pants, I encountered yet another pair of Joe Boxer pajama trousers, another clothing exchange item, that I had torn at some point trying to get my fat ass into.  I'm not going to repair them.  I need to stop letting myself settle for broken things because I think they're all I deserve in life.
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Cyrano de Univac

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