My year in review, 2016.

It has been quite a year. Ups, Downs, Lefts, Rights… You name it I experienced it. There were curves where I ended in a ditch, but there were also wide opens roads with the wind in my hair. 

I think it’s important as the year ends and another begins to reflect on all we have gone through that past 12 months, if not only to remember and hold those memories but to reflect on what we learned from each experience. Nobody’s life is perfect. We all have our struggles. We all survive. We all learn.

This year I felt like writing it all down and sharing my year, all the highs and lows. Pure truth in the life of Bobbi Jo Scott.
My year started off fresh, spent New Years with my family in Beaufort, NC. It was nice having us all together again. 
Auditions for “Lost in Yonkers” were in February, I was casted as Aunt Gert. Never, ever will I believe all small roles are easy. This was my most challenging role on stage yet. In the middle of rehearsals my life, the walls of my life, pushed in a little closer as I made the trip to Beaufort again to say goodbye to my father. My father died on February 26th from aortic dissection. I returned home to the heaven sent audition schedule and pushed forward giving Gert all I had. I truly love my theatre family, they held me together when I felt I was falling apart. 
The spring brought us to a new beautiful home. Rob and i made a trip to Beaufort to make sure she was doing OK, and help with some of my father’s final paperwork.  Spring had come and gone and a much awaited summer began. I went back work for the summer waiting tables….. Ha! great idea Bobbi. My first summer not being apart of ACLT Summer Musical, but work kept me really busy. Thought about death often this summer. Felt like death was upon me, watching me, stalking me. At the end of the summer I helped my friend Ramona with her production of “Steel Magnolias”. Now I really wanted to audition for this play, but my friends talked me out of it knowing I was directing the next one. I’m glad they did cause this ole girl was pooped! “Steel Magnolias” was an incredible play, with an incredible cast. No denying these ladies, each one of them were spectacular! My Mom had come to visit and I actually got to sit and enjoy my time with her. I felt that was really important.
One of my highs this year was a dream come true. True Ozians know all about the old theme park Land of  Oz.  This year I got to be apart of “Autumn in Oz”,  the park opens for the weekend, and oh what a magical weekend it was! I was only a Munchkin/Ozian… I’m definitely not cool enough for a main role (hence my size and age) but I would do any role. When I say this place is magical.. it truly is. Your heart is full, the anticipation and happiness of all the guests honestly fills your soul. I hope I get to experience that again next year!


I directed my first show this year, “To Kill a Mockingbird”…. Oh what an experience! One I will never forget and so grateful I actually had the chance for this experienced. In theatre you make these bonds… Friendship, love, admiration. This show filled my heart. As a stage actor you know when a show is good…. You feel it, everyone around you feels it. It so different as the director. The feeling on opening night is so intense, so different than being on stage, it’s honestly your biggest fear and biggest accomplishment all rolled up together in a tasty little bite. I learned from some of the best Thespians in the High Country. I casted one hell of a show!


My show had ended, like they all do, and I felt lost. I got real sad. I tried putting my life in perspective and I got lost. It’s so hard trying to be a wife and mother when you’re empty inside. My sadness turned into depression. My depression turned into pain. My health suffered. My family suffered. There were days all I did was replay my life, thinking about my dad, my family, my health. I just pushed myself, until I felt human again. I actually have someone to thank for that. We all have that one friend that can somehow make you remember who you are and why your here. 
Winter was before us, which meant so we’re the holidays…. I just couldn’t get it together. I couldn’t find a job. My family was suffering because of this. I was in more pain then usual. This was my low. My relationship with my husband was changing. I use to be afraid to fall asleep, frightened that I would not wake up. By the time a pushed myself to decorate for the holidays, all I wanted was to not wake up. Thoughts of Christmases past with my father wore heavy on my heart. My dad was like a kid at Christmas! Yet this Christmas all I wanted to do was say goodbye. Tired of the pain both mentally and physically. I am so tired of dying…
We made it through Christmas, thanks to our loving family. It was hard this year. The feeling of not being able to give your children what they want to Christmas sucks! But we pulled off a holiday of what they needed, not what they wanted. Guess what… They lived! 
This New Years all I wanted was to sleep… But I didn’t. I made myself go out. I’m glad I did as I rang in the new year with those who are important to me. I got to talk (probably too much) and spend time with my love’s. And once again I felt alive. I can’t tell you how important it is to live. I live everyday with the possibility of death. (I guess we all do). We don’t know how much time we have. All we can do live. I am ready to start living.
And now it’s over and a new one begins. 
This year I will smile more.

This year I will laugh harder.

This year I will do things I need to do to continue to smile and laugh.

This year I will love harder than I have before.
I hope you do to…….

My Wish

A month ago, I went back to work.
I went back to work because I had to. For my family. For myself.

Its bad.

I’m tired. I’m in pain. I’m grumpy.

But I continue to push. Pushing myself towards death. That’s what it feels like. Death.

I am pushing myself off the ledge.

But it’s still not enough. I’m not enough.

I wish….. I wish they could see how hard I’m working. On my feet 6-8 hours straight. Now most may laugh…. “only 6-8 hours”, well those hours are like 24 hours straight to me. You see I have arthritis in my spine, shoulder, feet and hands. I’m carrying plates, trays, glasses. I’m carrying the weight twice that others are, or that what my body feels like. I have to grip harder, hold tighter.
I wish….. I wish they could feel. Feel the stress, feel the pain.
I wish….. I wish they knew how it felt to drain your soul. To push yourself to the point of tears… and to keep on pushing till there is nothing left.

I’m torturing myself. I am my own terrorist.

I’m giving so much to my body, there is nothing left for my family. Everyone hates the other. There is no love in my house. My oldest has been babysitting for me. She hates it. She hates me, she hates her brother and sister. She hates her life.

I’m trying so hard.

I wish….. I wish I could give more. Be more. Do more.
I wish….. I wish I could stop letting others down. My family, my employers, my coworkers.
I wish….. I wish I had more to give.

You see, I have Celiac Disease. I work in a restaurant.  I am constantly around the demon that weakens me. Like Superman working at a Kryptonite warehouse. It takes everything I have. The contamination. The poisoning. The pain. But I keep on going… I have to.

I hate the feeling that it just ain’t enough. I’m not a good enough employee. I’m not a good enough mother. I’m not a good enough friend.
I need to do more, be more. I just can’t. I can’t do more.

I have been a stay at home mom for a long time. A decade. Honestly I wasn’t very good at it. I would do what I could on good days, but those bad days I never did enough. But I tried. I made sure my kids were clean, fed, safe and loved. Maybe the dishes weren’t done, and the dust was out of control, but I learned to get over that. I got up every morning to get the kids to school, did what I could do while they were gone and was there when they got off the bus. I helped them with homework. I made sure the necessary thing were done. Yes, there were days my children watched me crying from the pain. Yes, there were days I couldn’t get out of bed. I truly hate that my children have seen these days, but there is nothing I can do about that. I just hope it makes the stronger and more compassionate adults. I had time for theatre, one thing that made those bad days a little bit better. I wish I could explain what it feels like to be on stage. To be apart of something. To pretend to be someone else. To make people laugh… or cry. It’s my soul being to be on stage. If only I was as good at it as I am passionate about it. But I don’t have that this summer.

I wish….. I wish I was more.

You see, I have a blood disease. My body acts as though I have cancer, but I don’t. My immune system is shot. My WBC is high. My blood rejects protein and essential vitamins needed to live. My body don’t process…. anything. I am tired, all the time. I have chronic headaches. I awake with a headache, go to sleep with a headache. Everyday.

Because of all this my family suffers. Because of me.

I wish I could be healthy. I wish I could work full-time, take care of my family, keep my house clean, be active with theatre and still have time to have fun with friends. I wish I was like others. I wish I could but I can’t.

I wish I could give you more.

But I keep going…. keep giving it my all. Why? Cause I have to.

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Funny how my husband warned me that I couldn’t do it all…. he was right.

Living with the truth…. Celiac…. What?

Best and worst day of my life.

It’s not just a diagnosis, it’s a “life” change.

I can’t explain how hard it is to give up foods you love. Do you realize how many things are made with glutens? It’s insane. It’s in everything!

Unless you live alone, have plenty of money to de-glutenize your entire kitchen, and the entire family goes gluten free, you are constantly contaminating yourself. You are always in pain. Your gut controls your life.

Do you understand Celiac Disease?

Celiac is not curable. You can’t just stop eating gluten and poof, you’re cured. It’s not just “a watch what you eat” diet. If you are lucky to catch it at a young age you can help prevent other long term diseases, but you will always have the disease.

I was diagnosed at a later age, almost forty. There is damage that has been done that cannot be reversed. I live with that, do my best to be positive and allow my body to do what it can.

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So… I’m going to tell you a story about a girl….
This girl had dreams, big dreams. Those dreams disappeared slowly until the day they were no more. See this girl spent so much time in medical offices getting all the wrong diagnosis, trying to get better, only to get worse. She started to feel unbalanced.

Her hands would crap, and shake real bad. (She gave up painting)
Her feet continuously cramped. (She gave up running)
Her back would hurt so bad, she couldn’t stand. (She gave up sports)
She would go months with a headache. (She gave up going out with friends)
Her skin would be covered in these bumps, almost blisters, on her legs. (She stopped wearing shorts)
Her stomach would swell, and get rock hard. (She gave up getting dressed, stayed in pajamas)
Her hair was so dry, nothing helped. (She cut all her hair off)
Her skin was so dry it would crack. (She just cried)
Her teeth started rotting. (She stopped smiling)
She spent more time in the bathroom then she did outside. (She lost her friends)

Her immune system kept failing her. She was sick all the time.

She could no longer look in the mirror. She hated herself and her body. She became extremely sad. Tired of the pain, tired of the comments from others. Tired of living.

This girl spent too much time worrying about the pain, she forgot to live, she forgot her dreams.

Then one day she reconnected with an old friend, he made her feel alive. She felt healthier, and felt control come back into her life. She was happy. She was still in pain, but happy. He came with a beautiful little girl, she loved her like her own. Then they started a family, a miracle actually considering she couldn’t have them. They had two beautiful babies. She thought… “I can do this! I can live a normal life.” Then it came crashing down. The pain, the weakness, the no drive to do anything. So afraid she wouldn’t be good enough for them, So she pushed herself. She pushed and pushed, until she broke.

Back to more doctors, more specialists……

Then one day they figured it out! She wasn’t crazy, she wasn’t over dramatic, she wasn’t alone. For once someone cared enough to do the right tests, to find the right answers.

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So that’s where her story began… Starting over. 

Well my story, that’s where my story began.

I have good days, I have bad days. I have days that are so hard to even try to explain. I still suffer. I still cry everyday. I awake with a headache every morning. I still don’t like mirrors. My teeth are in bad shape, and it makes me not want to smile, that’s hard for me to not do. I’ve been gluten free for over a year and a half, though I do feel better my stomach still burns everyday, I am still contaminated daily for I have to cook for my family. I have extremely low if not null vitamin definacies – D, B, B12, iron, magnesium, potassium among others, not only from the Celiac also in thanks to a blood disease. I am often weak, or as some may say lazy. I can’t stand for long periods of time, my feet and mid back hurt and cramp. I can’t sit for long periods, my lower back spasms and sends electric shock up my spine to my brain and my feet fall asleep. Thank you Mr. Arty for that. I paint as often as I can, but with shaky hands I have had to relearn how to paint.

I get sick more than most. I am always cold, even when I’m hot. I am always hungry no matter how much I eat. Eating hurts. I am not healthy no matter how hard I try or what I do. I am constantly in pain. I’ve spent too much time in hospitals. I am often sad, and I hide. I have few friends that I rely on and trust. I don’t leave the house often, only when it is needed. I don’t give my children as much as I wish I could.  I feel sorry for myself.

Get over it! You aren’t the only person living this way!

And so my story continues……

I have so much in my life. I have a husband who I believe honestly loves me. I have crazy, out of control, loving, adorable children that keep me going. I’m still here, I’m still breathing. I do what I can when I can. I still push myself, sometimes to hard, but I have to. I don’t feel sorry for myself. I’m learning to “re-live”, live around my multiple challenges. I’m trying. I’m grateful for what I have, and those that will stay for the journey.

So my painting skills are off…. Hell I was never a Picasso.
So my teeth may fall out…. I’m sure there is a funny play out there with a hillbilly.
So long hair may not be my thing…. It’s OK, I look good in wigs.

It’s hard for people to understand what another is going through. Even people with the same disease are different. We all suffer in one way or another. It makes us who we are.

Who am I?

You ever have one of those days….. weeks… months…

You look in the mirror, it’s your face, but it’s different.
You’ve changed.

You look around and notice little changes. Your friends distance themselves… your children stop listening… your interests are gone. Your children are growing, your partner is growing…. you not so much.

I had so many dreams, so much to give…. Now I’m just an empty shell.
I was once surrounded by people I loved, and whom I believed loved me back…. Now I feel so alone.

Who is this person staring back at me?

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I use to smile, cause I wanted to
                          Now I smile cause I have to.

I’m sad. Truly sad.
I feel like someone else has taken control of me. Control of my thoughts, my fears…. My happiness.

I use to be the person that made others laugh.
I use to be the one people would confide in.
I use to be a friend.

Now I’m the one no one really wants to be around.

I am hiding.
I can’t leave the house without fear.
I can’t drive, I can’t talk.
I cry more than I laugh.

There is no passion or creativity in my art.
I lost it. I’m not good enough.
I fear of stepping on stage.
I lost it. I’m not good enough.
I have no control over anything, including my children.
I lost it. I’m not good enough.

I’m not good enough.

I have battled depression before. I know that thinking positive can help. I know I’m good enough….. just not good enough for myself.
I have been to hell, lived in hell, and came out of hell.
I have hit rock bottom, and used it as a springboard.

So why can’t I now?

I see what is wrong, I feel what is wrong. Though I have no control. I can’t come back. The fears… the anxiety… the pain… the depression… it’s so overwhelming.
My own thoughts scare me. I scare me.

I walk in a room and I’m lost. I feel and hear people’s thoughts, they don’t want to be around me either.
Heart and soul lost.

Who am I?
How did I get me back?

I want to be someones something.

I don’t want to fear everything.
I don’t want to think everyone hates me.
I don’t want to feel anymore.

BJ Scott

The dreaded 4 0

So in three days I’m turning forty. Yes 40! Where did the years go? I am basically half way dead?

And why is this such a hard birthday? What makes 40 so different?

I’m going to tell you what I think…..
1.  You’ve already lived half your life. It makes me think… what have I done with my life?
2.  If you’re a parent, you see how much your children have grown. When I think about that, I get sad.
3.  You look at your finances…. And you wonder where did it all go? (Some of us anyway)
4.  You look at your friends, you compare yourself.

Now I look at those four things, they are big. Right there…. those are my reasons for living…..

1.  You’ve already lived half your life. 

Yes, I have, and I made it. What have I done with my life? I lived. It’s not the life I pictured after high school, or even college. I never saw myself as a stay at home mom, hell I never saw myself as a mother. I’m not “living the dream”, but I’m happy. I have three beautiful children, a husband that loves me… What more could I ask for? I am breathing, laughing and making memories.

2.  If you’re a parent, you watch your children grow, and get sad.

Yes it makes me sad, sometimes even mad. But it’s also incredible to see what little pieces of you are inside them. That’s probably the best feeling. The older they get and the more I watch them grow, the harder it is. I’m ok with that. For the most part they are happy, healthy and compassionate people… that makes me smile. I’m not doing as bad a job as I may think.

3. Finances…..

Ugh. As a child you don’t realize how stressful money issues are. As an adult it’s a killer. We’ve been up, we’ve been down. But we always make it. We may be broke sometimes, but my kids are fed and clothed, they have a roof over their head, warm beds to sleep in and hugs whenever they need. A lot of children don’t have any of that. If I had more money, I’d help them all.

4.  You look at your friends….

Damn it, I am grateful for those friends! I have the best circle of friends a girl could ask for. They are my family. They are there for me in so many ways… I wish I could do more for them. There are things I compare. Some are more successful, some are better parents, some are prettier, more talented. But does that really matter? Nope.

°°°°So I’m turning forty°°°°

I’m still not happy with it. It’s a big deal right now. But I’ll get over it.

Broken

I am broken as a person….
I’m not the strong woman I like people to think I am.
I’m tired and weak.

I am broken as a mother….
I have no patience, tolerance or heart.
I’m lost and uncontrollable.

I hate how I let the pain control me…..

There are days I just want to give up… end it all.
Yes it’s sad to think that, to think of all the people I would hurt. I am so tired of living this way, pretending…

I push, and push…. but it’s still not good enough.

I am a wife….. a wife who is in too much pain to love her husband fully.

I am a mother….. who is too tired to spend quality time with her children.

I am a friend….. who is too sad to have a good time.

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Who am I?
What happened?

How did I break so easy?

In a few weeks I will be turning 40…. ahh the dreaded 4 0.
This year has been hard, this birthday.. even harder.

As you may know, this year I went off all my meds. I thought I could handle the pain, anxiety and sadness, I was wrong. But if I go back on the medicines it shows weakness. So many were so proud of me, how can I disappoint them? I seem to be doing that a whole lot lately.

How can I put the pieces back together?
How do I become unbroken?
How do I stop the tears?

Change

We all talk about it…. probably more than once a day…. how we need to change. How we need to quit something, start something…. change something.

When you get to a certain age you start thinking…. I never did this, or I’ve always wanted to do that. We start things, and of course they never get finished. Whether it’s school, kids, career, a painting, a dyi project, love or just life in general, there is never enough time, money or energy.

Something has to change.

We look around at friends, family and community… and see where we went wrong. “They have a great marriage”, “Their kids are always so behaved”, “Her house is always so clean”, “She’s a better _____ than I’ll ever be”.

Often in our lives we belittle the person we are, the person we’ve become. We pretend to be happy.

There is always someone better, prettier, more talented or more creative than you want yourself to be…… You know what? That’s ok!

I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching lately… want to know why? Because that person above is me.

I have found that lately I have been a pretty big downer… I have turned into a ball of negativity. Yes, me. I have lost myself. I am not who I want to be. I have turned complaining into a hobby. I am the person that I hate to be around.

Something has to change.

I need to stop worrying about what others think.
I need to start living, cause I could be gone tomorrow and have nothing to show for the life I have lived.
I need to start breathing… taking in life and just loving it.
I need to stop pretending… let people see me..
I need to start being a mother. I need to not care if my kids don’t like what I have to say.
I need to open my eyes… take in all this beauty around me and get back to roots.
I need to stop the stress… it’s going to kill me.
I need to get healthy… I don’t want to miss out on watching my children grow.
I need to accept that I can’t change everything.
I need to love, whole heartily, and accept that you can’t change others.

Something has to change.

It’s time to change “me”.

Uncomfortable

I recently had my very own “Mommy” vacation. I drove over 800 miles, alone, to Florida – this my friends was a big deal… See I hate driving. I don’t even want to drive to Wal-Mart, which is only about 5 miles from my house. And driving more than an hour is extremely difficult for me. (Damn arthritis)  But I did it, I did it for me.

A little about this vacation… I got to visit and camp with some very special people, family really. See when I lived in Florida, my husband and I, use to volunteer at this festival, a “Earthy” festival. A place where you feel love, and nature. A place I like to call home. A place where I don’t have to be “uncomfortable”.

I really needed that week. I got to center myself, release some built up energy, but most of all relax. I had long conversations, deep connections and time alone. It rejuvenated my soul. But also weakened it.

I got to do a lot of soul searching… I asked the universe for a sign that I was on the right path, and I don’t think I was. I was feeling uncomfortable.

There is that word again… uncomfortable.

I need to feel whole again, to love myself completely… to stop being so damn uncomfortable in my own skin. But…. I don’t know how to do that?

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Lately I have been going through a rough patch with my 15 year old. Now I know this is “normal” for mothers and daughters. Nothing I say is right, nothing I do is right. I am the enemy. This makes me uncomfortable. See I am her mother, but not her biological mother. I have raised her for the past ten years. I have helped her to become the woman she is becoming. So I guess that goes to show what a great mother I am when the child I raised is disrespectful, and unruly. What have I done wrong? How do I figure it out so I don’t repeat it? I’m left… just plain…. uncomfortable.

I am falling back into that pit of despair, this time with no ladder, and no will. I am lost.

I am grateful it is “Summer Musical” time. Large cast makes lo it easy to get lost. One place I’m comfortable is the stage. I don’t have to think, feel or be. I just have to pretend.

If only life was that easy……

Wow. To much.

Living with the pain…

A while ago I posted a little ditty “Tired of living like I’m dying”. So this is just an update on my progress such far…

Life has changed….. I have changed….

I am officially 1 week off ALL my medications!!! Yes, and believe it or not, I’m still kicking.  A month or so ago I went off narcotic pain killers… the WORST week of my life. In all honesty if it weren’t for my husband and kids, I wouldn’t be here. As hard as it is to say… Yes I would have killed myself. The pain… the excruciating pain… not only body pain but mind pain, I can’t even explain what I was feeling. Though as you can see… still here, still kicking. I’m dealing with the pain.

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That brings us to today… no anti depressants or anxiety meds… no pump inhibitors, no muscle relaxes, no arthritis meds…… Nothing. I went from 16+ pills a day to none.

Guess what? I’m living with the pain!

It’s not easy. I think about the pain meds every day. I miss that relief. I hate the pain. But I will NEVER do that to my mind or body again.

I’ve been doing a lot of research on healing my body naturally. I can’t erase the arthritis, the osteoporosis, von willebrants, the immune response, celiac, thyroid and other ailments… but I can improve them.

All I can do is continue the fight…. this time I’m winning.

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Free yourself

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I couldn’t say it better….

There WILL come a point in your life, probably more than once, when you need to free yourself.

Always think of yourself. You cannot help anyone else, if you’re not sure of yourself.

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