Knocked Over By A Feather

But It Didn't Keep Me Down…




I have a BFF… best friend forever. I am so lucky to have her but our friendship was hard earned, because of that, I don’t think there is anything that will ever ‘break us’ from standing up for each other and encouraging one another. In fact, we are such BFF’s that she decided to get diagnosed with fibromyalgia as well! No! Sadly, about two years ago she received the diagnosis but I suspect she’s had it for many years.

Holly was the typical tomboy, athlete, outspoken, and loud child in school… I was not. Shy, withdrawn, frightened, quiet me. Until my mom sent me to a summer program for dance and drama. I just completed the 7th grade. I literally cried when she dropped me off at the bus to go to the college campus 40 miles away for a summer program. I got on that bus and I knew NO ONE. I was from a town of 400 people, I was USED to KNOWING who was around me.  I changed completely after that summer. I went into the 8th grade quite sure of myself (thank you, Mom). And now, Holly didn’t seem so different from me.

We became besties after drinking too many vodka slushies at a party! (Yes, we were underage but there wasn’t much to do in a small town.) We shared the same toilet to throw up in. (Endearing, huh?)  We talked about why we weren’t friends? She really liked me and I really liked her. The deal was sealed. We were besties by the 8th grade. We ran with a group, but when it came down to brass tacks, it was Holly and me.

I often look at this group of pictures and see how illness progressed in me. The first picture is us in the 9th grade, the following at her wedding in 1996… still healthy. Then after my car accident, fibromyalgia taking my wellness, and idiopathic pancreatitis had begun eating away at my body. It was Christmas but I can’t remember the year, Holly would know, I’ll guess 2011? The last picture is a week after getting the final tube removed from my belly after 7 operations on my pancreas, July 2013. I look like death warmed over and Holly still alive and vibrant.

Through everything in my life, whether Holly is visiting me in Minnesota or back in Washington where she lives with her husband and son, she is with me. There are frequent calls, cards in the mail, and prayers… it is Holly’s voice I remember on the phone when I was in the hospital. It is Holly’s voice I remember when all I could do was lay on the couch and cry. It is Holly who never questioned me but kept me truthful, faithful and sane.

Here is hoping you all have a BFF. Treasure that person. I know I treasure mine.


Celebrating the publication of my book, The Shadow Boxers, summer of 2017.



Visit me!




I was sitting down in front of my laptop yesterday afternoon, feeling absolutely icky after my epic four-hour nap, when I had what I think some people call a “moment of clarity.”

“I’m sick. I’m really sick…fuck.”

In all of my spoken and written communications over the last five years, I have used the words depression, anxiety and fibromyalgia way too many times to count.

But, I don’t think that I have ever just said or typed, simply, “I’m sick.”

It’s so strange, but I wish that I could climb a moderately sized pile of dirt and stand on top of it while shouting, “Hey, you guys! I’m sick.”

Yeah, I’ll just pop a squat here…good enough.

The word sick is everything to me now, not the actual diseases that I have. They all combine to make me an extremely unwell 43-year-old woman with exhausted eyes and a wry smile.

Unhealthy, chronically ill…fucking irreversibly sick.

If you strip things down to the basics, it’s really so much easier to comprehend. Perhaps this is a phase, a part of the whole acceptance thing that I keep hearing about. I have no idea, I just sort of roll with the punches.

You know, the truly saddest part is that the healthy me is still inside this now sick body, confused as fuck about what the hell happened.

Why can’t I get my ass up to the little store? It’s a short drive and I can lean on the cart.

Why can’t I cook a big dinner? Or shit, even a small one?

Why can’t I think straight and do all of the things? Even putting a clean sheet on my bed is a monumental challenge now, what the hell is wrong with me?

Because you’re fucking sick, Mer. Get it?

Got it?


Mer the Hermit

My husband and I share a car, a 2004 Chevy Impala. We purchased it back in May with the money that I had saved up since quitting smoking back in January.

We had thought at the time that it was in impeccable shape for the $900.00 that we paid for it. It started right up and felt “safe” to drive. It didn’t make any weird sounds or anything. All good signs. We’ve had nothing but shitty luck with automobiles for years now, so cool beans.

Well, we just had to cough up about $650 to get a few important things fixed on the Impala, like the brake lines (done by a real mechanic) and the entire back brakes, with pads, rotors and calipers, done by my husband’s friend who also happens to be my weed guy.

My daughter was gone from 11am until almost 2am this morning. Her “so you don’t drive your mother insane” curfew is 1am, but I gave her an extra extension because she was going down to Akron with her new friendboy. (Not official yet, more on this topic later.)

So yeah, I was alone all day yesterday, which shouldn’t have really bothered me so much, only it really did. I spent much of my time fighting back a panic attack, because the same thought kept running through my head.

“You’re all alone, trapped inside these four walls. Trapped! Hermit Lady! You suck.”

I dug deep into my bag of DBT tricks, classics like distraction, opposite action, being mindful…and one that I made up myself…telling my brain to go fuck itself.

Kindly go fuck yourself, stupid hypervigilant brain.

My gigantic 75 pound American Bulldog named Maya helps me feel less alone. She’s the best nap partner, which we take most days, even if just for a short horizontal life pause.

Snuggle in, it’s nap time!

I’ve had many dogs in my life over the years, but she’s special.

Yeah, I know, everybody says that about their pets, like, I have the most special hamster, he does the Chicken Dance for a piece of corn.

Seriously, she loves to cuddle. She’s into the spooning thing and what kind of dog lover would I be to disappoint her?

Bring it in, girl.

We watched Family Guy Season 13 on Netflix. She cuddled on the couch with me.

Mommy loves you, Maya.

What? It’s cute.

So the brake job yesterday took my husband and his buddy almost 12 hours in total. He only charged us $50, otherwise there was no way that we would have put more than what we had paid for it um… back into it?

It reads funny to me, but I’m just going to leave it alone.

I suppose we would have had to start using Uber. I don’t know, I’m fucking old. Bring me a prune, get off my lawn. 


You’d be surprised how often I have a streak of a week (or more) of not leaving my house. On Saturday mornings I see my therapist. I force myself to go even if I feel like cancelling, but she’s been taking frequent vacations lately. So, I missed her again yesterday, now two weeks in a row, which sucked.

It’s really so much more than just a therapist appointment, it’s like a snippet of freedom once a week. And if I’m feeling froggy, I’ll even stop at the big store or the little store, dependent upon many variables that I am too lazy to list.

My only IRL friend that I have left is Cheryl, but she also has fibro, so lately our weekly lunch/movie outing has been becoming more sporadic.

I might be having a great day, but then she might feel like chipped shit on toast. Or then, she’s feeling decent-ish and I want to go bury my head in my pillow all day long. Or usually, we both feel just bloody awful on the same day, because fibro is of the devil.

Yep. You’re not seeing things. I have one friend that I can actually hang out with. They’ve either all moved away or stopped asking me to do stuff. People forget about you sometimes and that sucks, but it’s just the circle of life.

Me either, Pooh.

I had my own car for an extremely short time back in 2014 and I rarely drove it. If I was careful with finances for a few months, I could buy my own piece of shit car, but would the cost, upkeep and insurance be worth it if I barely drove the damn thing?

Now that I can drive our car and stop its momentum, I had planned on getting out of here for a bit today, but guess what?

I don’t feel up to it, plus there’s a cold front coming in again.

Well, shit.

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