At least it’s my left hand

Broken wrist with titanium plate

I’m slowly recovering, and getting used to doing more things one handed. The swelling has gone down a lot, and now the cast is pretty loose, and the inside feels like it’s made of straw, horse hair, and coarse steel wool. It itches! I have an appointment in a few days, and I think they’ll put on a new cast then, so I’ll have one that actually fits.

It doesn’t hurt nearly as bad as it did, but I still have occasional painful reminders that it’s not healed yet (I’m off the oxycodone but still taking Motrin). And I’m tired. Everything takes so much longer to do. And healing takes a lot of energy.

I’m applying for jobs. And I started taking some coding classes at Skillcrush (they gave me a discount code for unemployed people). It was hard for me to justify spending any money at all, but I think it will increase my chances of getting hired sooner.

It’s hard for me to know whether I should sleep as much as I want to (will this help me heal faster?), or should I push through the fatigue to apply for more jobs and/or work on my coursework for longer? I always feel like I can’t afford to sleep.

Life Sucks, And Then It Sucks Some More.

So you all know I’m broke, and I’ve been looking for a job while also trying to get people to buy my handmade jewelry or handspun yarn or hire me for web design.

Yesterday I took a break from all that and went for a walk. And I slipped in the slush and fell and either sprained or broke my wrist. I’ll find out which later today. Meanwhile I’m typing this with one hand. And I’m cursing the pain with every passing second.

Having the use of only one hand and being in excruciating pain makes it pretty hard to work on a website. Or write a cover letter. Or make jewelry. Or spin yarn.

Meanwhile, my bank balance keeps growing more and more negative. I need money, and I need it at a rate that outpaces the overdraft fees. (I called and got them to reverse some, but not all of the recent overdraft fees.)

Here are the ways you can help me:

• donate money to me here, now

• buy handmade jewelry I’ve already made

• buy handspun yarn I’ve already spun

• commission custom spinning with your fiber  (pay 50% up front, and the rest upon completion. I will begin work on your project when my wrist allows. The first to order is the first in the queue)

• commission a website. Contact me to tell me what you want. We’ll discuss the project and agree upon a price. You’ll pay 50% up front, and the rest upon completion. I will begin work on your project when my wrist allows. The first to order is the first in the queue.

• share this with your friends!

Thanks!


Oh crap

I’ve been taking a break from making jewelry this month and spending my time looking for a day job (it’s become clear that this business is never going to pay me enough to live). I’m hoping once I have a job I can continue to make jewelry on the side, but right now, I don’t even have the mental energy to go there. 

I’ve been basing my budget on an average of the last several months’ income, and unfortunately, this month skewed way low. I should have had enough money for another three weeks or so, but I’m out of money. 

So I’m having a sale because I need money now. Everything in my shop is 25% off now through the end of the month. No coupon necessary. 

Go there now. Buy lots of stuff. Tell all your friends. Please.

Thank you!

Looking for a day job

Sadly, I’m not making enough money to live on from jewelry sales. The good news is, I’m feeling well enough now that getting a day job is a possibility. A few months ago, I was afraid I was going to have to go on disability. Neuroplasticity for the win!

The bad news is, looking for a job sucks. Once I eliminate all the job postings that I’m not remotely qualified for, the ones that require driving (which I haven’t done since…2003? and swore I’d never do again), the ones that pay far less than a living wage (yeah, the reason I’m looking for a job is so I can make enough to live on, not so I can continue to be poor), the ones I am not physically capable of doing, the ones I am ethically opposed to, the ones that I would absolutely detest, the ones I would be horrible at, well…I applied for one job.

I’m waiting for a call back from a career counselor.

I think I just don’t know what to look for or where to look for it. I have skills. But I don’t know what the jobs are that require those skills.

part of my current resume

I know from experience that if I do the same thing all day long, every day, I will become severely depressed. I am intelligent and creative, and I need to be challenged. I’m really good at solving problems. I need to use my brain.

I’m not going to stop making jewelry, but it’s going to be a side gig, and once I find a job, it’s going to take a while to adapt to working full time somewhere before I have the energy to do anything else. In an ideal world, I could find something part time that paid enough to live on, but in an ideal world, my toenails would trim themselves, and I could eat four pounds of chocolate every day and neither gain weight nor get a migraine.

If you happen to know of a job opening in Ann Arbor that would be a good fit for me, could you give me a heads up? Thanks!

New designs and holiday shipping deadlines

It took me several weeks to make these necklaces; when I started them, I was only able to work two hours a day, so progress was pretty slow. By the end though, I was able to work 5-6 hours a day (I am feeling so much better!), so these necklaces represent a sort of victory for me!

 

They are all up on etsy now. From left to right: Upper Peninsula copper ore with vintage mother of pearl buttonocean jasper with Baltic amberrain forest jasper with garnetbumblebee jasper teardrop, and bumblebee jasper triangle, all set in fine and sterling silver. I hope you like them as much as I do!

Do you need to get a gift order somewhere before Christmas? The last day for ordering is December 19. I can’t guarantee it will get there in time, but USPS says it should, for US addresses. So, you should order sooner if you can. (This applies to in stock items. If you need me to make you something, if you order it NOW, I MAY be able to get it there in time. I will try!)

Last chance! This is the last day of my 20% off sale!

It’s Monday, so that means it’s the last day of my 20% off sale.

Copper moonscape earrings

Yes, time flies. Don’t ask me to explain it. I’m time impaired.

All I can tell you is today, everything in my shop is 20% off. Tomorrow everything will be back to full price.

Today all US orders ship for free. Tomorrow you’ll have to pay for shipping.

If you want to buy awesome handmade jewelry or handspun yarn and save some money (which you could then spend on something else, like chocolate), then shop now.

If you want to spend more, then wait. (No chocolate for you.)

 

It’s Small Business Saturday! Save 20% off everything with no minimum order!

Hey, it’s Small Business Saturday! I’ve expanded the sale so it’s now 20% off everything with no minimum order, and you don’t need a coupon.

And US orders ship for free!

silver and lapis earrings

Just go to my shop, and you’ll see the sale prices, next to the regular prices.

Sale prices are good through Monday, so don’t dawdle.

 

Hey, you want 20% off?

Yes. Yes, you do.

etsy coupon november 2018

For the next seven days, i.e., now through next Monday 11/26/18, save 20% on purchases of $75 or more when you use the coupon code ETSYCYBER2018 in my shop.

Also get free US shipping on orders of $75 or more with coupon code FREESHIPCYBERWEEK. (I think you can use both coupons, but I’m not completely sure about that.)

All jewelry purchases come in a black gift box with green ribbon, perfect for gift giving. And if one of those gifts should happen to be to yourself, well, hey, it was on sale. How could you not?

The F word

So. A few days ago I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia.

I figured it was probably either that or chronic fatigue syndrome, so I wasn’t surprised.

I had assumed it started after I was sick for six months in 2005. I was utterly exhausted, and they never did figure out what was wrong with me. After that, I had periods where I felt ok, and then periods where I was exhausted. The periods of exhaustion have been lasting longer and longer with much shorter periods of feeling ok in between.

I’ve spent the last few days learning more about fibromyalgia (this is a video of one of Dan Clauw’s lectures from last year). Watching it made me realize I’ve probably had fibromyalgia my whole life, or at least since I was a small child, and all of my other chronic conditions are actually symptoms of it. Different manifestations.

Later it dawned on me that when I was sick in 2005, that was probably actually a six month long flare.

This is all sort of making my head swirl. Ok, I really only have one chronic condition, not nine. That’s a major change. That’s good.

On the other hand, it’s a really major chronic condition that affects everything. That’s bad.

It explains a lot. It explains why I’ve never had much energy. It explains why  there’s pretty much always some part of my body that hurts. There always has been. When I was a kid I had sore throats and earaches all the time, then aching knees, then headaches, then backaches. It just went on and on.

Right now my entire back is killing me. My left arm is screaming. My shoulders ache. My neck is very unhappy. This has been my normal for the last several months.

It explains why I have never in my entire life woken up and felt rested. Ever. No matter how much sleep I got.

I can’t help but wonder how my life would have different, could have been different, if I had been diagnosed decades ago?

But not much has been understood about fibromyalgia until very recently. Many doctors didn’t even consider it real until very recently. So I really couldn’t have been diagnosed decades ago.

But you know? I still wonder. Because for decades I’ve been wondering, why can’t I just work harder, why can’t I just get my shit together, and earn an actual living like other people? Why do I have to be so fucking tired all the time? Why am I so fucking lazy? Why I am suck a slacker? What is fucking wrong with me?!

Oh.

Fibromyalgia is wrong with me. It’s not me being a lazy slacker who can’t get her shit together. It’s me trying the hardest I can and wearing myself out because I just don’t have any more in me.

So yeah. I can’t help but wonder how my entire life would have been different if this had been diagnosed and treated decades ago.

I’m grieving the past I never had.

It’s a process.

In a few days I’ll start to process the idea of a present and of a future. Right now that’s too much to wrap my head around.

Slowly I get things done

I added five new pairs of earrings to the shop last week. Like a turtle wading through molasses, I’m finally showing them to you now. [I finally got a diagnosis for my exhaustion and pain. I have fibromyalgia. I’m not happy to have it, but I’m glad to finally have a diagnosis. I’ll be writing more about that in a later post. As you might imagine, I have a lot to say about it.]

But for now, earrings. All images link to their respective listings in the shop.

Copper moonscape earrings

Perforated sterling silver earrings with lapis

Foldformed bumpy copper earrings with lapis and bronzite

Foldformed copper earrings with kambaba jasper

Copper and silver earrings with Chinese turquoise