California is experiencing a drought of epic proportions, or so they say. It has hardly rained in the past few years. That makes it hard for me. I’m a southern girl, raised in Florida where we enjoyed a robust thunderstorm on a fairly regular basis. In fact, I don’t believe my sister ever got to experience a birthday party without rain. July, her birth month, was jammed packed with storms that blew in off the ocean (we lived 15 miles inland) in the afternoons. They dropped their rain and evaporated as fast as they rolled in.

Even the hardest rain here in the Bay Area, doesn’t come close to the torrential downpours I was used to. Over the years, I grew accustomed to the weather here, but that’s not to say I am a fan. We get our rain in the winter months and the summer is bone dry. Most people would be excited to wake up to glorious blue skies every day in the summer, but I find it boring. Exceptionally so. The past few years of the drought have only emphasised that emotion. Add benzo withdrawal groundhog day syndrome to the mix, and you can see why I am excited over rain. It’s something new. (It’s needed too, don’t get me wrong. I am aware of the many catastrophes our drought is creating.)

Most of the rain fell during the night. Which of course, is maddening, as I want the whole day to be dark and blustery. I want to hear the scuttle of dry leaves turning clumsy somersaults down the sidewalk. I want to hear the wind chimes hanging in the cyprus ring out that the wind is rushing around. I did get to see some of the rain as I was up early (my new normal). Blue skies are filling in, taking over the gray clouds as the storm passes by. I am curled up on my couch with my door open so I can feel the breeze and watch the clouds dance by.

A black squirrel I feed came up and peered into the house. She comes every day and begs for peanuts. I got up and threw a handful to her. She buries them for the winter months ahead. Life goes on here in the garden. I watch another season slip away, and a new one begin to take hold. This is my fifth autumn in withdrawal. I can’t begin to tell you how deep the pain goes to write those words. I can’t allow myself to think about the medical profession and the FDA that allows this illness to happen. I have to redirect my thoughts, otherwise I make myself even more sick.

I am not sure how much standing up I can do today. The weakness is intense, along with the head pressure, and the burning, tingles etc. It may be a day to work on my website and paint. I’m going to sell some of my paintings on Etsy. That will be fun.

Another day here in benzo land. But at least the weather changed. I am grateful for that. Now, if only my health would change and I could pry myself off of this couch and out into the hustle and bustle of the world. I want to go back to Aspen and I want to visit Paris with my friend Lily. Hard to do when I can barely walk a half a block to Starbucks.

Oh well. Whatcha gonna do? This is my life, such as it is.