Daily Archives: January 24, 2014

Grad School

When I go to grad school, I’m going to do something I wish I’d done for my undergrad degrees.

By the middle of my senior year of college I was stressed and overwhelmed to the breaking point…absolutely falling apart from my bipolar sending me careening between hypomanic and depressed by turns. Then there are the issues I have with OCD. But really, for education, I think my bipolar disorder causes me more trouble, at least for this.

Because when I’m hypomanic I’m brilliant. I write pages and pages for classes, my papers are stunning in how quickly they write themselves, and they are really insightful. I do well, because I have so much energy that I can bounce through classes without any trouble. On the flip side, when I’m in my hypomanic states, I can’t focus on homework for classes. So what I end up doing is neglecting reading/homework for classes and floating through with pure former knowledge. Thankfully for me, I’m a history student, and I have a vast knowledge that I’ve amassed. So even if I’m too antsy to sit still and do the readings I “need” to for class, I can still manage to pass within the top 3 students in class.

When I’m depressed though, I’m miserable. My teachers have told me that my papers are still great. They take me far longer to write, and I’m even less satisfied with them than I am when I’m in a hypomanic state, but they’re still passing. It takes me so long to get through my work, and I cannot even bring up the attention and will to get through class participation and discussion. In these states, I’m more able to read for class, but I’m less able to handle interactions and presentations that are necessary. I lose face for being “anti-social” and “withdrawn” when I’m depressed.

It really does cause quite a lot of trouble. For my undergrad degrees, I didn’t bother to go through my school’s disability center to get help with my issues. I’m not going to make that mistake again. For grad school, I’m going to talk to my school’s disability services center to make sure that I’m taking better care of myself. It’s something I’ve been learning for myself. I need to take better care of myself, which means making sure that I take steps to manage school better when I go back. So for grad school, when I have the money to go, I’m making sure that I take good care of my mental health so I don’t end up 1 step short of a mental breakdown like I did this time.

“We All Have Problems”

HOLY BALLS!

THIS PSA IS AWESOME! This is ME! This is ME EVERYDAY! I can’t believe someone put me into a video! My brain runs all day long with questions and statements and conclusions and stupid stupid stupid stuff…

all while my husband is sitting next to me.

WOW! Great video!


Therapy Thursdays – My YouTube Bipolar Vlog Series

For a more personal experience, please check out my Bipolar Vlog series on YouTube…

Mental Illness x Marijuana x3

http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2014/jan/19/letters-marijuana-gloria-gun/

“Researchers from the University of Bristol, Imperial College and Cambridge University examined 35 studies that tracked tens of thousands of people for periods ranging from one year to 27 years to examine the effects of marijuana use on mental health. They found that people who used marijuana had roughly a 40 percent higher chance of developing a psychotic disorder later in life. Dr. Wilson Compton, a senior scientist at the National Institute on Drug Abuse in Washington, called the study persuasive.”

Does anyone believe that what you read in the news isn’t anyways the truth? I do. I mean, I know I have blogged about marijuana and mental illness before, but this time, I am not so sure.

I mean everyone’s body and mind are different. They are effected by different things, we have different senses and thoughts, so how can marijuana really do that to everyone? I have stopped using weed because, for me, it wasn’t helping me anymore. It became an ADDICTION. An addiction that helped my mind, yes, but an addiction nonetheless. I think that marijuana helps people with mental illness. It shuts your mind out, makes you feel okay and creative. It brings people closer to other people. It’s a revenue to millions of families out there…

but..

the more its okay in the world to use legally, the more the news is going to tell you bad shit. Isn’t that how the world works?

The people in power are always holding the big stick..

Smoke. Don’t smoke. Its your choice. Yours alone.


Happy (Slightly Freaky) Friday

For any of you who follow me on my rarely used Twitter, I apologize for any links you may have received, as apparently I was hacked.  Thankfully Doug from My Equator Search let me know about it or it could have gone on quite a while I’m sure.  This nice little hacker had already changed my password AND email address, so that was fun.  But all seems to be back to normal now…for how long, who knows!  

By the way, if you want to follow my rarely-used-by-me-but-often-by-hackers twitter account, you can find me @Bipolarly. I really never caught on to the Twitter thing.  It still confuses me quite a bit…that can’t be a sign of my age because many people my age and older are really into it.  So perhaps it is a sign of my lack of intellect.  I am okay with that.  

Now, I am off to the hair salon.  Not only am I getting my long tangled mess chopped off, but my son is getting a much needed trim.  His first two haircuts were a nightmare, so I am not holding out much hope for better this time.  I am thankful for such a sweet hair stylist.  I have known her my whole life (she used to babysit me, in fact) and she is the only person I trust to do Jacen’s hair.  Bless her heart for that!   If you are the praying type, and I hope you are, then say a prayer for Susan the hair stylist, and for Jacen the victim, and for his dad and I, the evil pair who inflict such terrible things like haircuts upon them both.  

HAVE A GREAT WEEKEND!

Tainted

Another day in the mental gutter. BFD.

I was hit with an epiphany tonight. Becca and I watch American Horror Story together every week and normally we’re both all about the show…But I watched it and…Got nothing out of it. It just annoyed me. I said as much and she said it was great. Which made me realize…

Depression taints everything, including the things we normally love. It literally sucks any joy out and replaces it with…nothingness. That is depressing.

It encompasses so much in my life right now. I don;t even like myself. I feel it’s all pointless, including me. That’s depression. Logically, I know this. Yet it doesn’t feel like something the meds will help and it will pass. It has just been this way for so many months now that I’m convinced this is who just my latest metamorphasis. A joyless miserable automaton who thinks everything is futile.

I dont want to feel this way, I fight it so damned hard, and it doens’t change a thing. Demoralizing. And the notion that it’s likely not me, it’s the depression tainting everything, that should be comforting, Because it leaves room for hope.

Hope is wearing a toe tag right now.

On the plus side, after six hours of trying to work up the nerve, I opened my mail box for the first time in six days. Fortunately it was junk mail. But that simple act brought on a vicious panic attack. I don;t know why getting the mail freaks me out. It started back in 2002 and it’s just never really gotten better. I might be able to get to the bottom of the things that are actually problems if I didn;t keep getting stuck with therapists who want to focus on what society thinks the problem is. I like being alone, I’m not broken that way, don;t try to fix me. I fear my mailbox to a psychotic degree, let’;s figure that one out.

Therapy is pointless. Least with the local therapists anyway. People who think wearing all black and listening to heavy metal are symptoms of a personality disorder need to die screaming.

I am a ray of fucking sunshine.

Makes me think of that Grumpy Cat where Death threatens to his eat his happiness…and the cats tells him he will starve. THAT is funny.

Pointless but funny.

God the depression has even tainted Grumpy Cat, thats just cruel and unusual.

Tainted. That’s me.


Put To The Test

Well, it looks like I’m going to find out soon just what this remission is made of. I’m going out on survey Monday and the team may go in as early as 6 AM to a facility that’s 75 miles from where I live, and I have to stop and pick up a car from the state motor pool on the way. That’s going to mean getting up in the middle of the night. And as we all know, a bpnurse deprived of sleep and forced to run on caffeine and pure adrenaline tends to not do well.

The upside to this is that it’s only one day; the rest of the time we’ll go in at a reasonably decent 8 or 9 AM. I’m not looking forward to driving through rush-hour traffic twice a day, and I’m definitely not thrilled with the fact that I won’t see much of Will next week—it’ll be “Hi hon, gotta head for bed, love you, good-night!” But this is, after all, what I signed on for, and it’s not going to be like that every week…..sometimes, we’ll go to facilities that are close to where I live and work, or we’ll go to some location that’s far enough away that we can at least stay in a hotel.

This is one tough job. I had no idea of what I was getting into when I said I’d take it. But you know, even with all its attendant risks, I still want to do this. Not just because I want to be an advocate for better care in nursing homes, but because it’s hard and I want to succeed at something hard. After two years of believing my best years were behind me and that my illness would limit me substantially for the rest of my life, I want to challenge those assumptions…..and if I fall on my face, it won’t be for lack of trying to rise above them.

Although I must admit, I am having a bit of trouble wrapping my mind around the cognitive dissonance involved in living in a society which trusts me with a government credit card (not to mention the welfare of its vulnerable elderly), but won’t let me sit on a jury because I have bipolar disorder. Now how weird is THAT??!

I remember saying awhile back that I have to live a double life of sorts in order to have a ‘normal’ one; I look around the office every so often and smile, basking in the presence of several dozen people who know absolutely NOTHING about me. They don’t know that I have to take 15 pills a day in order to present a professional demeanor and not leap onto my desk ranting and raving about having to join a union that supports causes I disagree with. They don’t know that I’m horrible to deal with when I’m manic and basically useless when I’m depressed. They don’t know that I’m terrified of what may happen if my routine gets too screwed up and I don’t recognize the subtle shifts that herald a major mood swing. 

The good Lord willing and the meds hold out, they never will. My recovery continues to go well, and though I’m (understandably) a little anxious about all of this, I feel I’m in control, and I know that I have to reach out sooner rather than later if things begin to go sideways. That’s why I have Dr. A in my Favorites list on my iPhone contacts list…..help is literally only a tap away. :-)   

 

 


Time for an Update?

I think it’s time for an update. This month I’ve already surpassed my previous blog traffic goals, and it looks like I’m going to hit 5,000 hits this month (currently at 4,575)! For some perspective, my previous record was from May 2013 with 3,601 hits.
I’ve been spending a significant amount time on my blog: writing new content, adding pages, making things look better. I still have many things I’d like to change or improve, but I’ve gotten a good start on my “To Do” list over the past couple of weeks.
I now have pages for About Me, Medications, Blogroll, and Friends. For those of you who don’t know, a blogroll is a list of favorite blogs. My Friends page is a place for me to share the brands I love to work with. Take a peek!
I’ve also started using social media more effectively. You can follow me on different websites by clicking the icons below the picture of me on your right. The links are for (from left to right): The Awkward Indie Girl Blog Facebook page, my Twitter, my Pinterest, Bloglovin’ (an awesome RSS feed reader), my Instagram, and my YouTube channel. Below the icons, you can sign up to get email updates from my blog. Let’s be friends all over the Internet!
As if there wasn’t enough going on, I’ve decided to try monetizing my blog. See those ads? I’m not sure how I feel about them. They’re distracting from the content, and I’m not making that much money. Ideally I would prefer to show ads for blogs and brands that I believe in, but I have not formed those relationships yet.
So that concludes the main changes around here. Poke around and see if you like it. Would you like to be included on my blogroll or on my Friends page? Let me know! I’m always available at 
or by tweet. I’m off to plan some brand new VIDEO CONTENT for you all!
P.S. You may notice that all of my non-mental health posts are now missing. After careful consideration, I decided to mark these old posts as private. The fashion posts do not reflect my brand, and I don’t feel that they serve any purpose on this site. I will, however, keep the pictures up on my Facebook page for now. I can’t bring myself to destroy all of the evidence…

Blogging for Mental Health – 2014

BFMH 2014“I pledge my commitment to the Blog for Mental Health 2014 Project. I will blog about mental health topics not only for myself, but for others. By displaying this badge, I show my pride, dedication, and acceptance for mental health. I use this to promote mental health education in the struggle to erase stigma.”

I wanted to do this last year, but I wasn’t really committed to it. I had too much on my plate to handle it. However, this year, I want to do the 2014 Blog for Mental Health. You should check it out on it’s launch page at Canvas of the Minds – here.

See, for me, mental health and illness are just part of who I am. I’ve already written pretty extensively about how I got my most recent diagnoses (here), but I’ll recap a bit. I was diagnosed with bipolar II and OCD. Before that I was diagnosed with OCPD and before that there were diagnoses of different types of depression. But none of those diagnoses ever quite fit me completely, there was always something off about them, and the treatments were always failures.

I was originally diagnosed as “clinical depression” when I was 10 years old. From that first diagnosis to being told what my latest diagnoses are at 21…it seems that I’m right on track for the stereotypical bipolar timetable for false diagnostics. It usually is about 10 years of mistaken diagnoses before doctors figure out what is actually wrong with the patient.

I’ve been told that I’m lucky. That it’s better that I’m so young and that I’ve been diagnosed and am getting help. In one hand, that is true, I’m sure. I haven’t had twenty or thirty years of wondering what is wrong with me…of rambling through life without having full control of myself. But in the other side of things, it still took them 10 years plus to figure out what was “wrong” with me. That is still over half my life with diagnoses that were wrong, medications that didn’t work, regimens that would fail after multiple months. It still was a nightmare of things to deal with. After all, uncertainty over one’s mental health is always painful, no matter how many years or how young the person in question was.

Still, I also want to work through what I go through on a daily basis. My own family are some of the worst in problems to deal with. So I write also to defuse my own tensions and to help me feel better. Beyond that though, perhaps others will find something they can relate to in what I write. If they can, that’s just another reason to write.

What I plan to share for this is most likely going to be writing. However, I do think I will share photos on occasion. I doubt I’d share poetry (I have written a few poems, but I hate to share my poetry), and I’m even less likely to share the very few things that I’ve drawn. My art is awful, so I don’t think I’m inclined to share it. My writing I feel far more confident in.

I’m going to enjoy participating in any small way that I can.

Miss Diagnoses

Originally posted on A Canvas Of The Minds:
Anyone who has ever looked up a “serious mental illness” like bipolar disorder has been smacked…