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Rant: A deep breath


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I've been in a very shitty mood lately - so shitty that I've been waking up in the middle of the night, angry and pissed, with no choice but to slowly simmer down and crash an hour later. You know, that anger that slowly burns the back of your brain while a faint ringing in your ears eats away the silence? Yeah, that anger. The lack of a comfortable sleep, on top of loads of other problems with friends, demoralizes me and I've already given up on the day before it's started. My bed has become my best friend and my worst enemy during the rough ride of these previous months.

So I figured a rant is due before I lash out at the wrong people. I'm lonely - I can't get a date; I'm unemployed, spend countless hours on the internet, and lost contact with best friends; I'm diving deeper into a part of me that I resent, and I'm sitting on old grudges that only serve to ruin my own mood. But that's the norm in my life, and while it sucks, I have no real reason to complain about those things because my own choices led me here. And all of these things can be overcome with time, effort, and self-improvement. There is something I can complain about, though.

Health problems! Fuck them. My health was never an issue in the past, but just over a year ago, I was saddled with one of the worst things possible (for me anyhow). And I'm still suffering. And that's why I'm pissed. My old job screwed me... no, I screwed myself for taking it.

I used to be a carpet technician (that's fancy talk for carpet cleaner). I'd go into private homes, vacation homes, offices, RVs, then nuke the carpets with strong, corrosive chemicals that can literally burn the rubber off the soles of shoes. I was around that stuff daily, for hours, inhaling the fumes that the steamer would shoot up towards my face. Sometimes I'd take an odd job and clean private jets in closed hangars that smelled like fuel and the bottom of a kitchen sink. And in hindsight, it was my own damned fault for not thinking much of it. The job was easy. It got me around and I got to see gorgeous homes up high in the mountains that I still can't fathom. I worked that job for about two years; I quit when I started coughing up blood one night.

I was already having respiratory problems before I spat the red surprises into the sink - choking at night, trouble breathing while sitting down, constant coughing - but I'd tell myself it was nothing. I was that stupid and stubborn about it, and it took a splattered sink to make me realize that maybe, just maybe, there is a problem. That was over a year ago. After going to the doctor, I was given no options but to take it easy and take medication. No work wooo yeah right it was hell, those first few months after quitting the job. I didn't think it was possible to feel like you've ran a mile for something as easy as going up a few 10 steps on a staircase. At random times, I'd feel like I was breathing through a straw, and any attempt to take a deep breath would have me choking in my own throat. And I'm a person who enjoys the outdoors and physical activities...

I couldn't go hiking with friends. Oh, how I tried. I once rode my bike to the nearby mall, which is half a mile away, and when I came to and back home, I felt like I could have died then and there. My insides were burning; I could not breathe properly. The world was pulsing in every color and rippling about, and my head was spinning. I rested and leaned on the first thing I came in contact with that looked comfortable - a trash bin.

That was the worst part... being unable to enjoy the little things. I was told to avoid physical activities until I got better, but my stubbornness proved immortal and I exerted myself anyways whenever I was given the chance. I didn't want to become a slave to the handicap I had then, and I didn't want to lose the little things that make up my simple existence. I tried to get a job again but I was disheartened by my persistent one-minute-long coughing fits, and I'd be damned if I was going to sit in my room and slowly waste away with my shot lungs. To be quite frank, I'd rather be dead.

The gamble didn't bite me back, and my breathing has improved tremendously ever since I quit working as a carpet cleaner. But, it's still shit. I honestly cannot remember what it's like to breathe properly. I don't remember what it's like to go a day without coughing out chunks. I don't remember what it's like to inhale and exhale without feeling every scratch in my lungs. I don't remember what it's like being able to relax after a long walk. Every morning, I have to force out whatever is fucking up my breathing, and I've been doing it for the past year. It fucking sucks. I want my healthy lungs back, and it's scary not knowing if I ever will.

I want to be able to take long, consistent, deep breaths without having to strain myself. It's all I ask for right now. But I can't, and I don't know who or what to be angry at for it.

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What sort of chemicals were you working with there and was dust exposure an issue also?

Chlorines and Ammonias?


Here's hoping that you're just having asthmatic reactions to left over irritants in your lungs anyway.

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If you still need to take it easy because of your health problems, maybe you could start up a major art project? It's always nice seeing new art from you on my submission feed.

Maybe you could take up gardening or something too, heh. Any constructive hobby would do good for your mental health, I think.

As for loneliness, I like you, so if you ever wanted to talk, I would enjoy that a lot!

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Thanks, guys. I'm always open for chatting and shooting around the crap these days, and especially these days when motivation is at a low. I do think a new hobby is in need since I've been stripped of my old ones for now. I might just start crunching art and writing again. I just need to find inspiration.

2 hours ago, Jtrekkie said:

Is it possible that your breathing problems are causing your other problems?

Friend problems are a different story entirely, but it's definitely caused my current unemployment problem, and in turn, my dating and "too much free time" problem. No one wants to be with someone without a job, and I also hate being broke because I'm one to spoil loved ones. But, sad fact is, a lot of my experience is in fields where heavy use of chemicals is required, and my doctor told me to avoid chemicals like the plague. There's a lot of factory work around here that I can potentially go to, but most have environments where bleach is a constant.

The most work experience I have is in the food industry, but that's also not an option right now because of my persistent cough. Would you eat at a restaurant if a busboy, waiter, baker, prepper, or cashier was coughing every two minutes? It's an unrealistic choice right now... I know I can get a job at a restaurant around here but I'll be fired within a few days. The most I've been doing now is small odd jobs, like picking up trash at apartment complexes and private homes, but I'm only making enough to scrape by.

15 hours ago, Khaki said:

What sort of chemicals were you working with there and was dust exposure an issue also?

Chlorines and Ammonias?

Dust was never an issue, so I can chalk that off.

I mostly worked with chemicals that had a low or neutral pH. Safe for the average home, and my co-worker and I would always open every window in the house before starting a cleaning. Sometimes I'd work with acidic chemicals to remove the occasional gum and candy, but it wasn't very often (it was the worst stuff to work with, too, because as I mentioned above, it could melt rubber). None of it is "supposed" to be harmful in immediate contact; you can walk around and talk, breathe, whatever, and feel totally fine during and after a cleaning. It's the main reason I didn't always wear a mask whenever I worked because I truly believed I was okay in that environment. My boss had told me that, but as with all chemicals, constant exposure is sure to fuck you over. I was around it for hours upon hours every day. It was already too late for me by the time I started having breathing issues, and I regret not being more cautious about it.


The silver lining in all of this is my unemployment actually stacked so much and my income has been so shitty this past year that I'm going to be able to attend college for free and get paid for taking classes next month. While this is amaaazing and I am incredibly happy because I've been wanting to go to college for a few years now, I hate that it had to be under these conditions.

It's like I tripped into a very deep hole, then a person found me and threw down my favorite snacks, food, drinks, movies, and books that I've been wanting to have for a looooong time. Like hey, this is great and all, really... But... I'm still in this hole. And it's kinda hard to breathe down here lmao

I guess it's just a matter of time until I fully recover. I've just been impatient and angry about it because I want to be well NOW.

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On 7/22/2016 at 6:33 AM, SkyboundTerror said:

I used to be a carpet technician (that's fancy talk for carpet cleaner). I'd go into private homes, vacation homes, offices, RVs, then nuke the carpets with strong, corrosive chemicals that can literally burn the rubber off the soles of shoes. I was around that stuff daily, for hours, inhaling the fumes that the steamer would shoot up towards my face.

Hey there, the first thing that came to mind when I saw this was that the company had you working in unsafe conditions, which sound like a clear violation of US safety standards. Have you looked into suing them? You could run the case by a few lawyers free and depending on if they thought the case had a good chance, and you got a settlement, they'd take a percentage as payment. It's just a thought, but something I'd definitely look into. I mean, if they had you working around chemicals that corrosive without the required protection being readily and easily available, that's a pretty clear-cut violation, and they should be punished, and made to pay.

You could use the money for college, maybe start some kinda business, moving someplace else.

Well, hope you feel better, in any event. Just some thoughts, here.

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