Finding an Editor is like finding a Dentist!

Finding an Editor for my self-published book plus several titles I am working on, is like finding a dentist. Both have one thing in common: I cannot afford either of them!

So my first book sits on several sites like Amazon, iBooks, and about 4 more sites, with no reviews. It has two reviews from Smashwords and I am so grateful! I listened to what they said and changed the book and cover.

I’m disabled on disability with two teenage boys who eat all the time, bills are a joke and I help my mom take care of my grandma/her mom, and I help my mom when her MS is bad. I have an eye disorder too so SEEING mistakes in my books is harder.

I could never afford an Editor because my goal is to keep my work at FREE pricing. Can’t do that on Amazon but through Draft2Digital I can get it on Barnes and Noble, iBooks and more priced at FREE!

This title has been out since December of last year, I did a giveaway on goodreads for ten books and it is free on Smashwords too but before that I had it on Amazon through their 3 month program where I could offer it for free lending. So I know someone must have read it! Two are confirmed.

As I work on finishing a new title, the weight of my world coupled with my seemingly lack of talent haunts my mind. Stop smoking, take care of my depression, anxiety, ADD, and Myasthenia Gravis and everything else under this roof (autistic son, one who has no “I’m full” trigger) and know my work is out in this world not shining like a jewel because I have been the only proofreader but maybe it’s just a piece of fool’s gold. I told myself I was publishing my books for myself, self satisfaction not for money or fame or even one review. It was important to me to get my first book published quickly because I needed my grandma to see it. She can pass away at any moment right now.

I have American Indian blood of the Chickasaw tribe in Oklahoma. If I lived there instead of California, I could get free dental work, health care and a house. A house in the middle of scorpions, ticks and tarantulas along with tornados. I’ll stick with earthquakes here in California. Besides the one and only time I went to Oklahoma was to see my birth father, where the indian blood came from, and my half brother tried to shoot me for fun, because he was bored! Nope. Not going back.

There is a TV show in the USA right now called Smile. It showcases people who get free dental work. Circumstances in their lives that has led to their rotting teeth is extraordinary but i can relate. I was born early and was too premature. I can’t afford a dentist to fix my teeth so I just have one here and there pull the tooth out. It sets me back financially of course but that’s all I can do. I don’t smile because of my teeth or missing teeth. I’ll never date. Shoot, I’m making myself depressed.

Life is a gift, and we can view it in a positive light or a negative cloud.  Pushing through all the muck around me, I’m grasping at the light, holding on to it with all my strength and promising myself that no matter what, I’ll never let go.

Day 2 of quitting smoking! And Myasthenia Gravis!

I had lost total control over my hands and fingers. Couldn’t hold a fork. I couldn’t walk very far without stumbling forward as if I was drunk but not.  My right eye was malfunctioning called ptosis where I could not control opening and closing my eye especially in the sun. Couldn’t brush my teeth or hair, or take care of my grandma and mom and my two boys as I have been doing. I couldn’t turn the keys to turn the car on, I couldn’t swallow food well or chew it, my kids said I always looked mad but I wasn’t feeling that way it was my facial muscles going nuts. The scariest part, other than useless hands and fingers was the scary breathing problem. My throat would close up and I could barely get air. It happened during extreme physical movement and terribly high anxiety times.

All of a sudden the caregiver needed her own caregiver!

Felt drained, similar to low iron feeling but deeper. Went to neurologist and got a blood test done, came back positive for Myasthenia Gravis. They prescribed me Mestinon (generic, under $2 for a month’s supply), 1/2 a tab (30 mg) every six hours.

AMAZING!
With the help of this tiny chalky pill, I’m nearly normal looking now. I no longer wear my wrist braces, I can walk without feeling exhausted after ten steps, I can do everything now, my eye works normal, I just get tired and sometimes, overheated. At those times, I lay down in bed with my fan and freeze myself, sleep a bit and get up after an hour or so feeling nearly normal again. Thank goodness this medication does not interfere with my depression, anxiety and ADD meds.

But I found that if I smoked a cigarette (Marlboro Special Blend), it made me dizzy and sick. I was smoking up to 6 cigarettes a day. I quit cold turkey yesterday and found I only missed the actions of going outside and looking at the roses, listening to the birds, feeling the sun or wind, etc. I did not miss the taste of the cigarettes. I did not miss inhaling the smoke that would make my eyes water.

So Day 2 is here and I have no interest in going outside and having a cigarette, there is a slight pull to follow my old routine of smoking but I stomp on it.. No one is telling me I have to stop smoking but myself. I do not want to feel sick AND it is a good example for my two boys.

Am I eating more? Not really. I can type again now and I have had troubles with my cell phone carrier so they turned my service off so now my phone is a glorified ipod. I play spider solitaire, read via kindle app and other games that grab my attention. I’m not biting my nails and I can’t crunch on ice as it breaks my already fragile teeth. But I’m surviving.

Having my hands back, my eye back in my control, my body back in my control is amazing! I am waiting for a scheduled MRI of my brain and a CAT scan with and without contrast for my chest. It seems we have this thing inside of us located at the top of our lungs, connected between them and we use it during childhood and by puberty, it begins to atrophy. But it plays an important role in Myasthenia Gravis. Sometimes there is a tumor on the thymus gland and much like Alien(s)chestbuster, they cut ya open and remove the thing.

How do we go through our lives, I am 41, and never know about this thing inside? I can’t call it an organ. It’s so weird.

So yay for a diagnosis, yay for a medication that is affordable and WORKS! and yay for day 2 of no more smoking! Sometimes there are days where I am very tired, and it is a disease that cannot be seen. Like MS too. People don’t understand that I had to use the handicap parking (only when there were more than 15 spots like at Target) when I couldn’t walk anymore.

So even if you can’t see something, it surely doesn’t mean that something is not there! Pay attention to your body, research using the internet (but don’t go all hypochondriac!) before seeing a doctor. I told my neurologist what I thought I had and he told me I was absolutely right! How many times do you hear a doctor say that?

Be safe!

Colleen

Me but now without the braces!
Me but now without the braces!

No more!

Mental health and Foggy Days & My first book is published and available on Amazon!

This Is Life

My son is in the hospital for depression. It’s been hard but his father drove me to see him on Saturday and Sunday. His 72 hour hold is over and he will be discharged on Wednesday.  It was one of the most hardest things I have ever done. To bring my son to crisis where he was taken back behind many locked doors by these very big men. Then they moved him by ambulance, totally strapped down from neck to feet more than an hour away.

Other than missing his handheld gaming system, food at home, and some other regular day comforts, he is doing quite well. I just pray that this is helping him as his life is just beginning and I need him to thrive while he survives.

On another note, our neighbors had a party last night and they turned their sound system all the way up. God says to forgive your neighbors but I found it hard because I already had a migraine and they do not care what time it is or how loud they are or to be courteous to thy neighbors. I called the police the last time they did this and they threw eggs on our cars. But on that occurrence their sound system was maxed out and on both times, the chairs we sat in vibrated from their pounding, swearing music.

My mom’s multiple sclerosis has not improved rather it is weakening her further. She couldn’t get pills down her throat without gagging so she’s wearing a cervical collar and it helps like magic! I am a caregiver to both my mom and grandma who;s leg was amputated in April of this year. I am a mom of two boys I love dearly and guardian of four cats that do not always get along and I am constantly cleaning up their messes as one overeats and up it comes while another overeats and makes a mess in both ways which can get pretty stinky, poor maine coon kitty. So furry. While our cat that overeats got bitten by another one of its siblings, I took him to the vet a week ago and he’s 21 pounds. He is doing much better now.

My happiest note is that I took my book I wrote for 2014 NaNoWriMo.org and I ordered the proof paperback and published it on Amazon!  I want it available as free so I’m going to have to figure it out as it would not let me do that. The lowest I could go was $0.99 and I am all about free books!

I will gladly send a copy to anyone who would be willing to write a review for me. This book was written in thirty days and edited in fifteen days by myself. It is just the beginning as I have one more complete novel that is my jewel that I am editing right now.

We have super foggy nights and mornings and I hope  that people drive safely! It didn’t rain but the cars drive by making that swooshing sound from the wet pavement.

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http://www.amazon.com/Love-Awakens-Colleen-Johnson-ebook/dp/B00QPRMJ60

I am going to give a paperback copy away in goodreads once I finish the proof.