Sunday, November 27, 2011

[How the Girl Stayed Sane]

I don't know about you, but in my life, it seems as though one thing going wrong ends up having a domino effect. I don't know if you've noticed or not, but I haven't really posted here for awhile; there's a reason for that...

I was too busy trying to remain sane.

When last we left off in significant blogging, I was preparing for Pets and Pumpkins. I'd just finished a portrait I gave away in a drawing, and I had just found out my cousin had extremely aggressive terminal lung cancer. Within days of my finding this out, she passed away. That was at the end of October, and the dominoes just kept on going.

The first Saturday in November, my dad and I drove up to St. Louis for her memorial service and drove back home that same day. By the time we got up there, I had a full-blown migraine. It did not stop until, well, today.

As if that weren't enough, on Tuesday the 8th, the weather was not very ideal for driving--rainy, hazy, and cold.  On my way to work that morning, traffic was insane, and just as I was clearing the hill before turning into the left-turn lane to campus, I had to throw on my brakes. I stopped. The guy behind me did not. He slammed my left rear bumper, sending me ricocheting across the other eastbound lane to the right into the concrete bridge barrier on the other side. After seeing I was conscious and surprisingly clear-headed, the driver proceeded to scold me for changing lanes without using my blinker.

I hadn't changed lanes. I always pull into that left lane from the time I turn onto Chestnut, because I know I'll be making a left turn, and I don't like to change lanes without absolute necessity. Fortunately, a woman about two cars back saw what happened and backed my story. I ended up with whiplash, intensified migraines, and a mild concussion. As of this past week, I'm still getting sleep paralysis, even when I'm not sleeping on my back, which is normally how I'm sleeping when I experience it.

Outside of the pain, the dizziness, and missing two days of work (and two weeks, effectively, of my ability to do any real paperwork or painting), I'm alright. My poor little Chevy Aveo5 (Blueberry Shortcake), however, did not survive. Before even opening the hood, the car repairman estimated repairs to cost at least $10,256.

Needless to say, Blueberry Shortcake was totaled. Poor thing. Only two years old, just over 9,000 miles on it, and it's gone. Rest in peace, little hatchback.







The wheel was completely folded under. See the broken axle?

Miscellaneous structure parts








That little car served me well. There was no damage to the inside of my car, and the shell took the brunt of the force--the airbags had no need to deploy, and OnStar did help me immensely.

So, for the next two-ish weeks, my parents lived in my house and helped me shop for a new car. I put in a lot of hours browsing, comparing prices and models, researching my old car to estimate how much my insurance would give me, until I finally ended up getting the car I wanted to begin with two years ago, and even better, I ended up with a one-year-newer model.






Purty, ain't it? So many cool hidey-holes, and much more suitable for me with a big-ish dog. If I didn't have only three classes in the spring, I'd get some cute accessories (i.e. seat/steering wheel covers, some dog magnets, etc.) to personalize my new family member.

The ordeal will go on for some time yet, however. The other insurance company owes mine plenty of money, plus my $500 deductible with which I plan to install remote start on the new car. That could take awhile, and I have an appointment Thursday with a chiropractor to get my poor ole spine straightened back out. I'm still a mess... heck, I'm still up at 5:00 a.m. from getting off the pain meds and my allergy meds. I was going to go to church this morning, but at this point, sleep takes precedence, especially since there are only two weeks of classes left, and I still need to get caught up on grading. Yeesh.

So, if I've flaked and failed to call you (of whom promised I would call), now you know the story and why I can't remember to do diddly squat right now. Hang tight--I'll be calling you soon.

I did get a couple small things accomplished, though... My art business now has its own unique website:

http://www.brushstrokes-by-niki.com

...and I started a lactose-free diet blog:

http://lifeafterlactose.blogspot.com

Check 'em out and leave comments on both! Feel free to contribute to the latter--I'm new to being lactose intolerant, so a lot of the information is new to me.

I think I may finally manage to doze off now. Hasta luego.

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