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Week 39

This is the 39th week since Penny died.

It's also about the same time of day. I'm watching Judge Judy - it's moved from one channel to another, and from 5pm to 4pm, but it's the same show. I'm remembering that sometimes I wanted to slap her hard for her rudeness and intimidation, for her insulting attitude towards people who don't meet her personal attitudes about work, and for her ignorance of and sometimes outright repudiation of the law she claims to be mediating. She's not a judge any more, she's a mediator, and one assumes that the costs of all judgements are paid by the television program, which also pays the travel costs for the disputants.
Penny and I used to watch so we could be appalled at the different people, but I'd have to do something else when Judy got into her two favorite self-righteous rants: that there is no legitimate reason for people to be unemployed (whether or not there is a recession, depression, outsourcing epidemic, etc.) because they should take any job, no matter how physically or mentally destructive, no matter how poorly it pays, or they become Unworthy; or that any verbal agreement between two people is invalid unless it happens to be between parents and children in which case, it always goes against the child if the child (even as an adult) disagrees about the terms or conditions.

That latter part was where Penny would yell at her. But we often disagreed about which of the petitioners was in the right, from the initial story. Penny usually figured out earlier which one Judy would rule for.

That had me looking around. While I was working at Tek, I made enough to replace some stuff that was wearing out: the VCR and DVD player (both old enough not to work and/or not to play things very well) and the television (bought in 1991, repaired in 2004, and breaking down again) was replaced by an HD LCD set, on sale for a bit more than the TV was, but adjusted for inflation, equivalently less.

I looked at this from the couch, rather than my usual perch by the big computer, and realized, that I really miss sharing this with Penny. That's probably the hardest part of any of this 'death' business.

I talked to Marcie (Penny's Stephen Minister) a few days ago, and she asked me if Penny had been visiting. I'm not sure what she meant, precisely, but I did mention that I've had dreams with her in them, and sometimes, I know that it's the real her, and other times, I know that it's purely a dream construct of my image of what she's like, and I'm not sure precisely what it is that makes this clear. I'll have to ask Marcie what she meant, and if she'd also been getting visits.

Back when the narcolepsy started getting worse, before I started taking Ritalin to control the excessive daytime sleepiness from narcolepsy, my dreams stopped abruptly. I figure that was because I wasn't able to get into proper Delta sleep to set up the REM part, which is what I could always remember. I've noticed, though, that if I really need to dream, I can take a half hour or an hour, in the afternoon or evening, and I'll often dream. That, or going back to bed after I first wake up (six hours on the dot from when I go to sleep, impelled by the bladder).

So, I was thinking about the way I used to dream and having dream journals (I kept them in highschool)... and maybe I'll have to start doing that again, just to force whatever the dreams are saying into the conscious world.

Anyway. Saturday will be the day we go to Todai for the belated birthday lunch/dinner. 1pm. I mentioned to Linda that Nancy had suggested doing some kind of memorial thing, and I realized that, no, doing any kind of special memorial in public would trash me completely. Even thinking about it makes me break out in a cold sweat, lump up in throat, etc. and the deliberate breathing exercise doesn't really help much with the sweats.

Some months back I bought a bunch of CDs from CDBaby.com so I would have something non-intrusive to play while I was at work. One of them was titled "Healing" and was mostly new-age-ish background music, and I noted in the feedback that I had bought it to help me sleep, and help with the return to some kind of equilibrium. I got a nice thank you back from the artist.

In an utterly mundane context, away from anything deep: Rachel Ray just made some kind of pizza-lasagne hybrid. I think I'll have to make it using Dreamfields pasta. There's a warning not to use an acidic sauce to cook the Dreamfields in order to keep its low-carb action going, which means I'll have to be careful to put additional cheese between the pasta and the tomato layer, but that shouldn't be terribly hard to do. (Also she has a WEIRD stove!)

That, and I made a stuffed eggplant this week. I used (pre cooked) pork and chicken instead of the usual lamb, and processed it a bit too long in the food processor, but it was really pretty good, so I think I'll have to make it for friends, especially if I can figure out how to make the skin keep its color more easily.

Also, a friend had surgery and I need to sign up for some kind of meal prep for her. I have some salmon I've been marinating in a lime juice prep to keep it from going bleah, and I was planning to cook it with fresh marjoram and rosemary but forgot to get them, so I'll prep it and provide it for her to use at her leisure. I need to fix it soon though, or it'll go Strange and Inedible.

Anyway. See y'all next week.