Daily Archives: May 13, 2013
I wish they could see and understand how they paralyze us with their verbal abuse, pounding, pounding away at the fragile core of our being. This one reminds me of a "joke" that was often told when I was a child: Daddy puts his little boy up on the mantle, holds his arms out and says, "Jump into my arms!" Little boy says, "No, Daddy, I'm afraid you won't be able to catch me." Daddy looks hurt. "Would I ever let my little boy down? Come now, jump! Jump, and I'll catch you!" The little boy musters all his courage, and leaps off the mantle piece into the open arms of his father....who steps neatly aside, chuckling as his son hits face-first into the floor. When the blood and broken teeth have been cleared away, the father takes the still-sniffling child on his knee. "Now, why are you carrying on this way? Haven't I always taught you never to trust anybody?"
I am too exhausted and suicidal to write my own post just now, but Clay seems to have written one for me.
So I basically wrote what I imagined to be a 500 word post in my head and now, it’s only partially written in my memory. (I have a terrible memory—not sure why, is it only me?). And of course now, it’s Monday. I don’t know about you but for me Mondays are never my most productive days even though it’s the day I wish was the MOST productive. Anyways, here are my five tips, my five lessons that I’m always learning. Continually learning.
5. Be careful of the company you keep.
What I mean by that is, don’t let toxic people poison your days…your life. I don’t mean only with their negativity, but people who are bad influences, people who won’t support you, people who don’t even TRY to “get it.” Not everyone will GET what you’re dealing with, but everyone can try. I’m not telling you to ex-communicate everyone in your life. I’m simply suggesting you evaluate the people you’re letting into your sphere of influence…those who influence YOU. It’s more than thinking positively. I know not everyone has a good support system, and although I DO have a good support NOW, I haven’t always had support from everyone around me. It’s necessary to choose SAFE PEOPLE to be around and to allow their influence into our lives. Safe people are trustworthy people who either get it, or try to. This might look different to different people. But as you’re reading this, if it’s something you’re struggling with, I have a feeling you know what to do to solve the problem in your life. I encourage you to do something about it, whatever that looks like to you.
4. Comparison is the thief of joy.
I’m not the first person to say this phrase, and I don’t remember who else has used it. According to thee wise old Pinterest it was Theodore Roosevelt who first said it. Roosevelt or not, I know it’s a good one. As a bipolar person, as a woman, as a mother, as a friend, as a HUMAN…I’ve learned comparing ourselves to other people is not only UNHEALTHY, but unnecessary and will steal joy, contentment and happiness fast! Be you, and no one else. Don’t compare your life, your recovery to others. Relating to people and understanding each other and what we are all going through is great, and helpful, and important, but it’s NOT healthy to compare to the point of jealousy where you think you’re less than anyone else. Everyone has their own issues. Be you. Be content. Being you is good. Being you is right, and you can’t ask anything different of yourself.
3. Don’t be too hard on yourself.
Whether you’re stable or in the pits of bipolar recovery hell, let up a little on yourself. Keep going, I encourage you to do the best you can, but only that. It’s okay to fall, but just pick yourself back up again. You can only do WHAT YOU CAN DO and pressuring yourself and putting FALSE GUILT on yourself only makes things worse. And for me, with false guilt comes anxiety. I’ll address false guilt more at a later point, but in short, I describe false guilt as this: if guilt is a real feeling over something bad you have done, then false guilt is that same nagging, uncomfortable feeling over having done nothing. Make sense? It’s something I’ve struggled with and for me goes hand in hand with anxiety almost 100% of the time.
2. Trust your instincts
Especially when you’re a woman, (I’m not a man so I can’t speak for men, ok?!) But when you feel something to be true, and you feel it in your gut, consider going with it, consider trusting it. True instinct and women’s intuition are typically right. There are exceptions to this, and that is, if you’re not good at listening to your own intuition. It can be tricky. So for starters, try learning to listen to your instincts and deciphering what’s your gut and what’s not. When you can start to trust your instincts, listen and follow through. This is something that I learn time and time again in motherhood, but I don’t think it’s exclusive to mothers or women.
1. No gossiping
Random? Maybe. True? Yep. If someone is talking about other people to you, I hope you know they’re talking to other people about you. It’s true. I’m just saying. Keep your mouth and your heart pure. It’s like I tell my almost-four-year-old son; “you wouldn’t like it if someone _______ to you, so don’t do that to them. He’s still learning the lesson, and anyways, we are all continuously learning and growing in life…but this one helps me keep a clear conscience and mind. Thus, limiting anxiety also.
So these five points seemed somewhat unrelated to each other. But they’re also completely on-point and completely related. Such big life lessons, and things that I’m often sharing with people and ALWAYS needing to remind myself of. I just needed to share them with you. They matter to me, things that make a difference in my life (and, when in check, help with anxiety too— BONUS!)
I woke up this morning, as one does most mornings. I got up, feeling vaguely alert and happy to have woken up at the right point in a sleep cycle. I always figure that waking up in the midst of a dream is good proof of sleep for some reason or another, so I pushed myself upright to whap snooze for the last time, and started parsing what I could remember of my dream.
Now, I’ve always considered my dreams to be weird. I’m guessing most people feel the same about their nocturnal subconscious-based emissions. But it’s been a long time since I’ve had a dream so disturbing that it’s lodged itself into my conscious thoughts in an intrusive and repetitive manner. My brain seems to have felt the need to spit up a dream about an ex-boyfriend from over a decade ago, complete with the semi-stalking that followed our break-up, and the smirking planes of that face recreated most faithfully by my bastard brain. And it was truly being a bastard — all I was trying to do was find a bit of privacy so I could get dressed, but he kept popping up every place I moved to, smirking, and completely disabling my attempts to put clothing on in frustration and ire.
To my benefit, at least, I do have one current working tool against my brain’s attempts to spit up bullshit like this — writing it out, or telling someone about it in general. This is the kind of crap (like my resurgent micro-crush on one of my friends when depression is rising) that my brain tries to spit up because it knows me well, and knows that I am so horrified and upset by these things that I don’t want to tell anyone else. If I don’t get it out, it festers, and very quickly drags me down into dangerous bad places. But if I manage to release it, it doesn’t cause me too much harm. I don’t know how long before my brain finds a way to fuck me over so that I can’t make use of this current tool, but I’ll hope that it takes its sweet time about it.
And, I guess, I’m not surprised it picked last night to dream stupidly. I’d gotten completely rage-fuelled worked up over something incredibly stupid, and stormed off to bed before I started breaking things. My husband, brave lad he is, remembered what almost happened last time I went that far, and came in to check on me. We had a good talk and I apologised for my brain being stupid, and managed to explain the particular backstory on that brain issue — I’d been suggesting we watch one of my shows for a week, and he put on something sports-related instead. He’d told me he was going to and why, but my brain decided to completely flip out over being ‘forced’ to watch stupid sports when I’d been going to bed earlier lately, so why didn’t he watch it after an episode of my thing, etc. I’m so used to people hating everything I like right out of the box that it’s nigh on impossible for me to ask for things, and TV is his relaxing thing (not mine), and and and. Well. As said, the bad bits of my brain dug their claws in. But we talked it out and it was good in the end, and I am pleased for both of us. But it did certainly lay the groundwork for more brain bullshit.
It suffices to say that even though I woke up feeling a bit alert, I’m pretty worn down all in all. It takes a lot out of a gal when her brain starts acting extra-stupid. I don’t know whether it’s just my body trying to process the Zoloft or happenstance, but hopefully it won’t happen again. That whole sitting down and having a normal conversation last night was a pretty impressive near-miracle, I should say — usually I spiral upwards or downwards until I explode into super-sharp shrapnel of maximum wounding. So whatever the case of the bad, it certainly was better than usual in those circumstances.
Hope everyone has a good day. I’m off to get more blood out of my caffeine stream.
Started out okay, other than the usual dread of a family get together.
As the morning progressed, my kid kept ignoring me, defying me, and my anxiety rose to epic levels. It made me want to just say yes to whatever she wanted (“Yes, honey, go ahead and play with that rusty chainsaw…” “It’s okay if you want to juggle meat cleavers, sweetie…) But I nutted up and just kept reiterating “NO” which has become one of my least favorite words from sheer overuse. Necessary evil at parenting but sickening none the less.
My nerves feel like taut and frayed ropes about to snap. Every word out of my kid’s mouth is just fraying the strands more. Because she never shuts up. If I am doing anything other than staring off into space she must dominate every bit of my attention and if she doesn’t get it, then she just keeps saying “Mommy” every ten seconds to the point I find myself snapping, “WHAT?” I know she’s a normal kid, but I am not a normal mom and some of this shit just really takes a toll on me.
Forced myself to go to mom’s for the mother’s day shindig. No blow ups, no attacks from my mom, no extra bums invited. It was unusual but nice. Of course, my brain decided it was bored to the point of being comatose and combined with the anxiety, it was all I could do to sit there and fake smiles and nods like I was actually interacting when in fact, my mind was screaming to just get out of there. I know I am super bored when I’d rather go home to do housework than visit with people. But in all honesty, other than my kid and the drama at the shop, what do I have to talk about?
Speaking of all that drama at the shop, it’s actually beginning to give me stomach aches. That happens when things stress me out. I put a rubber band on my wrist and have been snapping it any time my mind starts to furiously churn over all that stupidity going on with R and Kenny. I mean, seriously, they’re lost causes and the ship is sinking and I think I am expected to go down with it. Some days, I’d be okay with it. Most days, I am not, simply because I will not go gently into that goodnight….I refuse. Fuck ‘em all.
Once we got home, the little playmates came over. I handled about a half hour but my brain is just exhausted and my anxiety is just wow, I have taken a massive dose of xanax today and it’s not doing a damn thing. I sent the kids home, gave my kid a bath, and now I am just biding time until I can put her to bed. The noise from her and the noise from my mood swinging mind is almost too much. Like nails on a chalkboard. I think there was a fifteen minute period today when my mood was up. Maybe an hour when I was at peace. Then came the anger. The anxiety leading to panic attacks. Now I am feeling demoralized and depressed.
And other than a hyper kid, there were no triggers.
This is just cyclothymia.
Otherwise known as the moody go round.
Not a fun ride, at all.