Since our polling place opened at 7 and I had a 9 o' clock meeting, we had to get up early to get to vote. The alarm went off at 6:30 and I just groaned a bit. Fezzik was still sleeping serenely outside in the bitter cold. John woke up when he heard me going into the bathroom and came in and changed. Both he and I were really groggy with staying up about half the night, so I toasted scones while John fed Fezzik and we ate a good breakfast before going into Erie.
Fezzik looked like he'd be okay, the highs were only supposed to be in the low 30's today, but he seemed more than content to stay outside. He wasn't coughing this morning, either, so that was one bit of real relief for me. I also had to get him medication for his arthritis and stuff today, so it felt like it was going to be a whole day at work.
We got to City Hall a little after 7:30, and got into a rather long line snaking its way around the room for voting. It didn't take that long to get our ballots and since we'd read everything and talked everything through beforehand, voting, itself, was really quick. By the time we were leaving there were a whole lot more people packed into that little room. I think that the turn out is going to be amazing, what with most folks saying the presidential stuff is still in the air. It's kinda funny knowing that if it's *really* close everywhere, the whole process of just counting votes in each state may make a difference, as just the poll results may well not be the majority of votes in some states. Washington has over half its voters turning in absentee ballots for the next few weeks! So it'll be interesting if some state doesn't have everything counted up real soon and it's the latter votes that'll make a difference.
Work, work, work. I had a bunch of stuff to send to people, post, publish, and ask, so I spent most of the morning doing that. Lunch time I ran off to Fezzik's glucosamin. The Boulder All-Pets had the stuff, and it was kinda weird to find out that they only had it in the 120 tablet bottles, as the Lafayette one had the 90 tablet bottle and sad as it may seem, I don't know if Fezzik is going to last an entire two months. But I got it and hoped that feeding to him frequently has been one of the things that keeps him going okay.
On the way back from All-Pets was a little Chinese restaurant that John and I had gone to once when we were staying at the Homewood Suites a year or more ago. So I stopped there afterwards and ordered lo mien and potstickers to go. I really wanted the potstickers but thought a little bit of vegetable might be a good idea, too. The problem was that the lady said that it would take five or ten minutes, a bit longer 'cause of the potstickers, but when I went to Safeway to get myself a drink (and a couple of really nice looking grapefruit, which Trip found out are called that 'cause the fruit actually grow in clusters like grapes!) and came back a good fifteen minutes later, my food still wasn't done.
It took nearly half an hour. The baby was kicking me most of the time I was waiting, too. I guess when I have low blood sugar, the kid kicks or wiggles and the like. All the way back to work, I'm smelling the food, the baby is kicking me in a temper tantrum, and I'm starving only the way I can starve now. So I get to my cubicle, open the bag and there's no chop sticks. Luckily, I have a couple pairs in my desk and when I open the cartons there's a carton of the noodles, a tray with the potstickers and some dipping sauce, and a third, smaller, carton that's filled with, of all things, white rice. Now, neither of the dishes I ordered really are to be eaten with rice, but there it is... an order of rice I didn't order. I guess Fezzik will have more rice to mix with his meat, or we'll have some fried rice some night.
The potstickers were really quite good, actually, even with the wait. The lo mein was disappointing, dark with soy, loaded with meat and had very few vegetables in the mix. So I ate all the potstickers, put the lo mein in the fridge and was quite content for the afternoon. Still tired, but now, at least, I wasn't hungry.
So I did more stuff, got most of a list of ToDo's done that was nearly my entire planner page. Played a little Sephar, got more answers, figured a few more things out, but got interrupted a lot by co-workers. Found out that that Boss Bill wanted to take over one of my projects, so I handed that, willingly, over to him and he's all enthusiastic about it, so that's good. I think he has a better handle on it than I do anyway, so that should be useful.
Talked a bit with Geoff, heard Cary hitting things in his cubicle and muttering darkly. Wanted to just buy Stuff of all kinds, but refrained. There are a few things from Levenger I want and we just ran out of Mexican oregano, so I should probably get some kind of order into Penzey's for various things, but I'd forgotten what the other things were that I wanted to buy other than the almond extract. Better to just not touch that. I seem to want to buy things when I'm depressed. Found out all kinds of random stuff about reality, and realize that I'm just completely exhausted again, so soon in the week. Maybe it's just Fezzik keeping us up nights, or just a lot of things on my brain and heart.
John had meetings until late even though he said that he wanted to go home early. I know he's trying to cut his workload, especially late at night, but it's hard, and I don't expect things to happen instantly.
Hm. Poke, poke. It's funny. I was talking with one friend who has, for years, just not felt hungry. She only figures out she might need food by the fact that she's fatigued, feeling depressed, or, on some occasions, when her hands are shaking too hard for her to do what she wants to do next. There is just some kind of disconnect and there's no feeling of hunger. I'm realizing that, maybe, that's how I am about being depressed. I notice that I want to buy things, that I'm eating too much, or... hmm... sure enough, my shoulders are rock hard.
It got worse during the evening. Mostly because Fezzik, who had been out all day, was really sluggish and not doing at all well. He was sneezing and he felt really hot to me. Then again, I was pretty cold. I should probably just have John turn the heat up some, or get another sweater on or something, but Fezzik didn't seem to be doing at all well. When he wanted out after eating his dinner while lying down, he couldn't get across the wood floor very well at all and when he was out on the back porch he just couldn't seem to find his hind legs at all and just lay down there instead of doing whatever it was that he needed doing.
Meantime I watched the election returns and for a while it looked like Gore was running ahead of Bush. For the last week or so I'd been resigned to Bush winning, but was going to vote for Gore anyway. Part of that was 'cause John was determined to at least make his vote count, and even in Colorado, which normally is overwhelmingly Republican, there were some stirrings of possibility. We voted 'cause there were all the other issues on the ballot we cared about. I really, truly wanted the 'Waiting period before an abortion' thing dead dead dead, and it was very gratifying to find that the returns had nearly 70% of even the very conservative electorate voting against the thing. A bunch of it was 'cause the stupid bill included making the women give information that could become public knowledge. So I had this moment of hope about Gore possibly winning, and then it gradually got worse and worse and more depressing. Then it was like Bush had won again.
I dunno. I think that never before have I really thought of a president actually affecting my daily life. This time it's different. If Bush does get elected and does select Supreme Court folks that overturn Roe and Wade, if I do try for another kid and there are significant genetic problems, I won't have even the possibility of an abortion. If my kid happens to be homosexual, he won't ever get full rights under such a Court and those guys are picked for life, so it'll be a generation before they die off. If Bush gets elected, when I visit Alaska, it may well be fucked up with a short term drilling solution to feed oil interests. He may well delay fuel cel development by pushing oil interests. And there will likely be instant impact against technological stocks if he does get elected. It's interesting to realize why I had so much wound up in this one election when, before, it was all just something distant and not something that feels like it could touch me directly.
I also re-realized that John really does love me for who I am, all of me. That he doesn't mind when I disagree, when I am different he celebrates it. When I was happily chanting about eat eat eating grapefruit, he laughed and rejoiced that I would do such a thing. And he's had a decade and a half to learn what all of me is, so there is nothing that he doesn't know about me and he still loves me, and there's the proof of all this time. And best of all there is nothing of me that he would change. That's something precious. It's also interesting to realize that when John gets mad he's likely the only person in the world that I am sure isn't mad at me. Pretty much everyone else gets some fear from me, but he doesn't. When he was swearing at the chocolate milk thing, I was safe enough to just laugh and laugh. I know that there isn't anyone else that I would feel safe enough to do that with.
There are many people that like me just the way I am, and I'm so tired of the folks that want to somehow change me, my opinions, beliefs, or actions that I'm starting to just not want to even get near them anymore. Why is it so hard for people to accept that someone might be different from them? Is all that they really want a validation of things they are by forcing other people to be like them? I dunno, it makes my head hurt.
Fezzik made it hurt even more for a while. He was just lying on the porch looking completely miserable. Finally, I couldn't take it anymore and John asked me what would make me feel better. So I actually thought about it and said that it would make me feel better if the two of us carried Fezzik onto the lawn, let him relieve himself and then bring him into the house. John asked me, "What happens if he doesn't pee?" and I just stared at him. It just didn't occur to me that it might even be a possibility. "Well, let's see."
So we went out there, and he actually got up himself, but we carried him down the stairs and Fezzik found that he pretty much could walk on the driveway with no problems. He then marched right over to the stand of trees and relieved himself. Thoroughly. He then wobbled back to the porch and looked at the stairs, so we carried him up and he immediately headed inside and lay down on his bed inside. I got to see the porch on the way back and he'd actually leaked a bit on the porch, so he had had to go pretty badly. I felt mildly bad leaving him for so long, and it seems like he's started to give up at times. Just give up trying to get up when things are hard and we're not keeping him company or something.
That was really bad, in some ways.
I took a bath and just cried. Not just 'cause of Fezzik, also 'cause of the election, because I realized how hard it is to care about people that wanted me only for what they wanted me to be rather than what I am, and 'cause I was exhausted after not sleeping well yesterday. The heat of the bath was like a blessing on my whole body.
I went to bed soon after, warm from the bath still and finally relaxed about it all. John came in as Fezzik wanted to go out and he wasn't sure if he should let him out or not, so we talked it over, and given that Fezzik doesn't have that much time left, it seemed better to let him do what he wanted even if it wasn't what we wanted. It seemed the logical extension of what I needed for myself, that Fezzik be allowed to be himself for as long as he could. So John helped him out and down the stairs, and John watched Fezzik out the front window for a while and chuckled. Fezzik was happily wandering all around the yard, eating snow, lying on the lawn when he wanted to, barking a bit, getting up and exploring things for a bit again. He was happy and seemed quite content to do what he wanted to do out there.
John and I talked over the fact that Fezzik is definitely losing capability, that he's good one day, bad the next, and, overall, he's not getting any better. It's hard, really hard, when Fezzik's mind and spirit are still there as strong as ever and it's just his body that's failing him. It's obvious, now, that he gets frustrated or even a bit depressed when things don't work. He isn't in any pain, at all, but he does get frustrated, which is pretty bad. Where is the line when we're holding onto him for us and when we're letting him go simply for convenience? It's so not obvious right now. There's also the question of 'does he actually have to be in pain for us to let go?' Especially since he's just getting more and more frustrated and depressed by what he can't do but he's still recovering pretty quickly when he does start going again. Then there's the whole question of which are his up days and which are his down days and will he actually continue to get better pretty quickly after the down days? Especially with Orycon coming up and knowing that we'd feel really awful if he took a turn for the worse that didn't turn better while we were away and knowing we had to be there when he died. So we decided that if he had a night like this one before we were supposed to leave for Orycon, we would just stay home. If he was strong and doing well for the nonce, we'd go. It really is getting to be day to day, now.
It's good to have someone to talk such things over with that doesn't just break down into ranting or lament or breastbeating. Just talking it all over and thinking it all through, hard as it is, it's real and it's something we can do something about. Something we can make the best of if we really think and plan for it rather than just letting things happen when we don't expect it.
We left him outside as he seemed content and capable again for the time being. When I got up to go to the bathroom the three times I had to during the night, the bathroom wasn't nearly as cold as it was last night, so I wasn't afraid of him getting too cold. That was as reassuring as hearing him walk along the porch and go down the stairs without the bang that happens when he stumbles, and hearing him make it up the stairs, slow steady steps, one after the other. Reassuring enough that I just slept deeply for the first time in days.