Daily Archives: June 21, 2013

The Post on Why I Can’t Post

One thing that’s very important to me regarding my blog is that I post regularly.  To me that means a minimum of twice weekly, preferably three. But as I said in my previous post, I’m having a difficult time adapting to a normal schedule. Each day I think it’s going to be better and instead it gets worse. I don’t know why.

Right now, as I sit here, my brain has turned into mush. I can’t even watch tv because it’s just too much for my mind to grasp. Thankfully I don’t have classes on Friday, otherwise I’d really be spinning.

I think it’s a good day to get outside and talk a walk or meditate or something other than sitting here painfully writing a simple post.

Bipolar Marriage

I’m not sure how I’d approach my marriage any differently if I weren’t bipolar. I’ve only ever been married as well as bipolar, never been married and not bipolar. See what I’m saying? But I guess that could be applied to several aspects of my life. I’ve been a diagnosed bipolar person almost all of my adult life. It’s what I know, and partially, it’s who I am and have become. Although it’s not what defines me, it’s definitely part of me.

At this point I wanted to share the perspective of a spouse of a bipolar person. Who better than my own husband? You’ll likely read elsewhere on the blog how we met, but briefly, I will share. We were married in 2007 after two years together, and have three adorable kids. He’s my champion, my support, the love of my life and has played a humongous role in my stability. When he was introduced into my life I had new motivation for living and a new example of what life could look like. I wanted life with him so bad. It was then, upon first dating him, that I had a renewed hope for what my own life could be like.

wedding picture

Don’t get me wrong…I’m NOT saying two things here. Firstly, I’m not saying a MAN is the answer to bipolar disorder. Secondly, I’m not saying it was easy. I was very insecure, especially when we first became a couple. In my life, before Mr SQ, I always had a fear no one would love me. I don’t know about you, but I was worried about it. Bipolar disorder aside, it was a real worry of mine.  I worried that I wouldn’t be accepted.  Then, I was diagnosed and, of course, that fear level increased tremendously. How could a man love me for who I am, and what I’ve done, and throw in some mental illness…

But, what I thought I “knew”, wasn’t true, nor was it right. God had the right man for me.  I’m also not saying he cured me. I still have my ups and my downs. I’m still very bipolar. If you read about how hard pregnancy was for me, you’ll learn about how I had my bipolarity strongly confirmed when I was taken off all of my medication at once.

It’s wonderful how God is in the details of life. My husband will tell you he knew from seeing me at a distance, at first-sight that there was “something about her” and he knew he had to meet me. And he made it happen. Well, maybe He, made it happen.

Let me just share something before we start the interview. When I first read these questions to my husband, I asked him what he thought of them. He said they’re very thought provoking and implied he hadn’t really thought that much in depth about some of these things before. To me, it potentially shows a couple of things. A) he’s a man and hadn’t thought about it and/or B) He’s so loving and accepting, he hadn’t thought twice about these things. However, now he’s been forced to dwell upon these questions. Continue forward to get to know him, me and us, as a couple, better.

1. How do you think God prepared you for a bipolar wife.
I grew up with [a bipolar person] in my family, although we didn’t know it until later. I naturally learned how to live with it.

2.How did your wife tell you she was bipolar and what was your immediate reaction?
I don’t remember when she told me she was bipolar, but I remember thinking “ok, she’s bipolar” and didn’t think twice about it.

3. How do you think bipolar disorder affects your wife’s approach to marriage?
I don’t know how it affects her approach. All I know is she has a good view on God’s perspective of it… it’s a God-based marriage.

4. How do you think bipolar disorder affects your wife’s approach to mothering/motherhood?
These huge life things we do, we don’t do them through the goggles of bipolarity. Like, marriage, having kids. So I don’t think it does affect her approach to motherhood. But, it may diminish her patience from time to time.

5. How do you think your wife would be different without bipolar disorder?
I truly don’t care to know.

6. What is the main thing you wish everyone knew about supporting a wife with bipolar disorder?
I guess, I’d like everyone to know the symptoms of bipolar disorder don’t make a person. They don’t make a full individual…they just have symptoms of an illness.

7. What’s the main thing you wish everyone knew about your bipolar wife, Laura?
That she is honestly the best thing that’s ever happened to me.

8. What does your wife’s stability mean to you?
Her happiness.

9. What would you tell someone who is dating a bipolar person, regarding relationships and marriage etc?
I would say like anything else in life, you have to go all-in for it to be worth while.

10. What is the one thing you wish everyone knew about bipolar disorder in general?
I’d like everyone to know that a normal life is very attainable in someone who has bipolar, stability being the key.

PS. I didn’t alter his answers at all. Not for editing or writing purposes. These statements are truly his.

I love him.

Truly Thankful,

Mrs Bipolarity

Spam inside your sweat

I’m laughing fit to bust.  On the inside, because I rarely laugh on the outside.  But no matter.

Yeah, yeah, I know it’s a cliche to publish your spam.  But this one is such a doozy I have to share it with you.  It originates from Korea:

 

Magnificent website. Lots of useful information right here. I’m sending it to several buddies ans additionally sharing in delicious. And of course, thanks inside your sweat!

 

Have a wonderful weekend, all, and I hope everyone receives all kinds of blessing inside their sweat!


Apex and Nadir (Or Why I’m Not Much a Fan of Rollercoasters)

Growing up in the DFW Metroplex meant that my family normally had season passes to Six Flags Over Texas. It wasn’t exactly the cheapest indulgence, but my parents did try to spoil us rotten as best they could (to a degree — I had to bust my ass to earn money for most things I wanted in life!). Even now, I still remember with revulsion the first ride my parents took us on — it was one of those giant drop elevators that goes up a million stories, then the bottom falls out. I couldn’t understand the appeal and sort of resented them for inflicting that on me — why the hell would I want the bottom to drop out under me?! I certainly don’t want it metaphorically, and to this day, I cannot see the thrill of going for it literally.

Mind you, I didn’t avoid all the ‘thrills’ over the years, and I eventually even conceded to be inflicted with at least one case of upside-downitis. I still preferred the tamer rides, or the rides that got you wet; a Texas summer is a blistering thing. I didn’t trust to gravity to take care of me, I didn’t wave my hands in the air like I just didn’t care (’cause I did care). I already had enough tumult in me to desire any rush of endorphins or whoosh of air shaking up the already caustic mix. Mind, not that my emotional state was *quite* that wrecked as a kiddo, but it had to start somewhere — what spoons I could find for even mild thrills then are almost non-existent now.

Here as an adult, I definitely prefer to remain on terra firma in all aspects. Oh, it would be one thing if I had the power of flight (arguably the best superpower), but past that, I want to stay grounded. I’m an Earth sign astrologically, so whatever one may believe of magical stars, I certainly can smile and claim it as further proof of my need to stay grounded — it’s in me! Grounded is also synonymous with centered, balanced — it’s that highly desirable state wherein emotions are ‘normal’ and not haring up and down the spectrum, a place where functionality is more easily achieved.

Of course, I have no idea if I’ll ever truly reach the middle ground and stay there. I’m feeling pretty good right now, but I am certainly wary of it being sneaky hypomania. I certainly believe in and make use of mindfulness in my life, but even that can only go so far when the chemicals start a wide swing. That isn’t to say that I give into self-fulfilling prophecy though — I think it’s possible to be aware that up and down are likely to happen without feeding the cycle. And really, I do think I’ve made progress on learning how to relax. I do think that between meds and applying my own CBT, I’m holding up fairly well. There is definitely a measure of good and center right now.

<3

The post Apex and Nadir (Or Why I’m Not Much a Fan of Rollercoasters) appeared first on The Scarlet B.

This just in: Guiness book of world records has been called

Okay, so the title is classic Morgue sarcasm.

Still…I didn’t have a bad day, mood wise, anxiety wise, or emotionally. Nothing bad happened. It was hot. That’s my complaint.

Seriously, this is the stuff the world record book needs to hear about.

Hardly worth a post, but in the spirit of trying to be less negative, I thought I would post something about how things don’t suck.

In classic Morgue pessimistic mind frame…

Tomorrow remains to be seen.

For tonight my worst problem is being sweaty.

I should be so lucky more often. :) 992949_201854256636078_1430806891_n


Holy moley, back to the Holy Land again!

So yes, I have been back and forth a lot this year.  Israel is my home.  There is no where else in this world that I feel at home.  I felt at home there the moment I stepped off the plane on my first visit in 2005.  I returned in 2006 to study in a women’s seminary, and in 2007 I made Aliyah: I moved to Israel.

When I settled there, I knew that at some point I would be obligated to return to America to help my parents, who are now 88 and 86, respectively.  That point came in the terrible winter of 2010-2011, when their remote mountain home was completely surrounded by ice, and my father had begun to fall frequently, and my mother was freaking out.  I had already flown in from Israel three times to “put out fires,” and the fourth time my mother called begging for help I packed up my house and was back in the U.S. in three weeks.

They really did need me then.  My father was in the early stages of dementia, and was struggling to maintain what was left of himself.   He refused to use any assistive devices, not even a cane.  He was constantly falling asleep at the dining table and sometimes falling off his chair.  One time I had to extract him from under the table, where he had slid down and was tangled among the table legs with his arms pinned under him.

Then finally he fell and broke his wrist badly and got a concussion to boot, and was in the hospital for a couple of days.  While he was there, I had his bed brought down from upstairs and made the living room into a bedroom.   When he had recovered enough to understand speech, my mother and I forbade him ever to use the spiral staircase again.  He was incensed and called us his jailers, which he does to this day, but better jailers than to have some disaster on the steel spiral staircase that reminds me of a submarine.

The past two-and-a-half years, since I’ve been here, have been tempestuous and productive all at once.  If you are a regular reader, you will know that I have had issues with PTSD caused by my abusive mother, who has not changed any since I left home at 16.  So staying here has been a challenge, to say the least.

A few weeks ago I couldn’t take it anymore.  I had developed high blood pressure.  I was constantly filled with rage.  Suicidal fantasies filled my days and nights.  Not just THAT I wanted to kill myself: developing more and better and more sophisticated methods, so that I wouldn’t be found.  Oy.

I knew I had to get out of here, get back to the Holy Land for a few weeks, breathe the air in Jerusalem that is filled with holiness, even if it’s also sometimes filled with dust.  So I booked a flight for a three week respite, announced my plans to the P’s, and took off.

Do you know, I have so many friends in the Holy Land that in three weeks I could not even visit two-thirds of them?  My family is there, my family of choice, the loves of my life.  I got to see some of my patients, who have become dear friends.  Two of them have had children while I was gone.  Actually, more than two–no, three–no, four–and three of those have had TWO children while I was gone!  I went around smooching babies.  I had coffee and Israeli breakfast (oh, Israeli breakfast!  I could do a whole post on Israeli breakfast.  Maybe I will.) with a lady so pregnant that she could hardly reach the table.  She has since given birth to a girl, MAZAL TOV, even more mazal tov since she already has four little boys.

I stayed with my adopted brother. We took bus trips to exotic places and had extraordinary meals and adventures.  And we made Shabbos together and drank strong Israeli port wine (20% alcohol!) and solved all the problems of the world.

I spent one Shabbos with my adoptive family, my rabbi and his wonderful wife (my adopted sister) and their adult children and grandchildren.  We sang and learned Torah together and laughed and cried and I felt bathed in love.

And then it was time to leave.

I freaked out.  I ran to the rabbi upstairs.  He is an expert in Jewish Law, and qualified to judge cases.  He is also an expert therapist.  Two hours with him, and I knew what I had to do: I had to save myself by being in the Land with my real family.  So I scuttled about and **voila** found a tiny apartment, just right for my needs, and signed a one-year lease.  That night I flew back to the States.

I had already told my parents that I planned to return to Israel for the High Holidays plus the month preceding them.  My custom is to devote that month, Elul, to intense Torah learning, in preparation for the Days of Awe: the ten days between Rosh Ha’Shanah, the Jewish New Year, and Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.  There is much spiritual work to be done, if one is to get the most out of those intense and heavy days.

But as soon as the plane hit the tarmac on my return from this three week trip, my heart sank into my shoes.  I just feel terrible here.  I belong in Israel.  I belong TO Israel, and she belongs to me.  We are lovers.  I am my lover, and my lover is me.  I did not know what I would do, how I would be able to survive the–what, six weeks?–of what remained of the summer, because I knew that after the next trip, I would be back here for the winter, and who knows how much longer?

I tried to put a good face on it, and smile, and I don’t think it worked, because yesterday my parents told me, in a kind way, that they know I am not happy here, and they know I am very happy there, and they want me to be happy, so they want me to return to the Holy Land.

This is bitter-sweet for me.  Part of me is elated that they have released me.  Part of me feels like I am failing them.  Both the rabbi in Jerusalem and my therapist here tell me that this is guilt, and guilt is in no way productive, and it is entirely optional.  I plan to get over that guilt, because this place is killing me.  The rabbi in Jerusalem reminded me that we are not permitted to harm ourselves in any way, and even I have said that very thing on this very blog.

My ticket is at the end of July, with an early October return.  I might extend that through November so that I can spend Chanukah in Jerusalem, that amazing festival of light and enlightenment.  And then we will see, we will see what the light brings in.

My Channukiyah (menorah) in Jerusalem

My Channukiyah (menorah) in Jerusalem