Daily Archives: January 14, 2015

A Quieter Mind

Rough night. When the kid wasn’t waking up, I was poking her with a stick. Not literally, just checking her forehead for signs of high fever. Not good rest.
This morning…Anti motivated aside from calling her into school.
Took an hour or so to motivate myself. She said she was feeling better but she was coughing and felt warm to the touch.
So we bundle up, drive seven miles to the dr office…
And she just has bad allergies.
No ebola, no plague. ALLERGIES. The school has sent her home seven times for having allergies then has the nerve to threaten me with some truancy charge.
Rubbish.

But with that all off my plate, the child medicated and on the mend…I don’t feel so awful. My mind is busy, but controllable. I was so worried. At the same time, thinking, puh-leeze, kids get sick, not every sniffle is fatal.
This school system has turned me into an alarmist.
I went on record with the dr office that the school’s the one sending her home and having their 24 hour return policies. I don’t want to be labeled at Munchausen by proxy or some shit. I want my kid at school. I’ve lost positive barter points (and a date, of sorts) by her not being in school.
I don’t want attention and I’m uneasy with my “sickly” child shining a spotlight our direction.

All in all..
I’m ok. For now. Every evening, when it gets dark and I get cold, my mood sinks into the abyss and all I feel able to do is curl up under warm covers, toss, turn, mull, and stress out. I don’t know how to stop it. I get the feeling if it doesn’t change soon, I will be calling the shrink and taking him up on that script for “as needed for anxiety.”

Now…For those who think I am incapable of doing anything but going OCD over my mental issues…
Check this out.

Just funny cos it’s true.
meth

I found this one last month and it really is worth reading.

therapist_owl_poster


THE BLUE BRAIN PROJECT EPFL

http://bluebrain.epfl.ch/cms/lang/en/pid/56882

In brief

Reconstructing the brain piece by piece and building a virtual brain in a supercomputer—these are some of the goals of the Blue Brain Project.  The virtual brain will be an exceptional tool giving neuroscientists a new understanding of the brain and a better understanding of neurological diseases.

The Blue Brain project began in 2005 with an agreement between the EPFL and IBM, which supplied the BlueGene/L supercomputer acquired by EPFL to build the virtual brain.

The computing power needed is considerable. Each simulated neuron requires the equivalent of a laptop computer. A model of the whole brain would have billions. Supercomputing technology is rapidly approaching a level where simulating the whole brain becomes a concrete possibility.

As a first step, the project succeeded in simulating a rat cortical column. This neuronal network, the size of a pinhead, recurs repeatedly in the cortex. A rat’s brain has about 100,000 columns of in the order of 10,000 neurons each. In humans, the numbers are dizzying—a human cortex may have as many as  two million columns, each having in the order of 100,000 neurons each.

Blue Brain is a resounding success. In five years of work, Henry Markram’s team has perfected a facility that can create realistic models of one of the brain’s essential building blocks. This process is entirely data driven and essentially automatically executed on the supercomputer. Meanwhile the generated models show a behavior already observed in years of neuroscientific experiments. These models will be basic building blocks for larger scale models leading towards a complete virtual brain.


The Devil and Daniel Johnston

He was different, said his mom, I noticed that right from the start.

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He was precocious as a kid and creative pretty much from the start and he’s still singing and drawing. He has a remarkably young voice for a portly, grey haired guy. You might know him from Kurt Cobain’s tshirt with a Daniel Johnston album cover on it.

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As a kid, he made films at home, so we hear him discussing manic depression right from the start (as a teenager). In 1982, sounding like a young and raw Bob Dylan, he wrote this song.

I Had Lost My Mind

I had lost my mind.
I lost my head for a while was off my rocker outta line, outta whack.
See I had this tiny crack in my head
That slowly split open and my brain snoozed out,
Lyin’ on the sidewalk and I didn’t even know it.
I had lost my mind.

Why, i was sitting in the basement when I first realized it was gone.
Got I my car rushed right over to the lost and found.
I said “pardon me but I seem to have lost my mind.”
She said “Well can you identify it please?”
I said “Why sure its a cute little bugger
About yea big a little warped from the rain”
She said “Well then sir this must be your brain”
I said “Thank you ma’am I’m always losing that dang thing.”

I had lost my mind.

A skinny little kid who looked a little demented, it wasn’t long before he had a recording contract and a reputation for being crazy and weird. And a musical career ensued … with a day job at McDonald’s.

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There you have it, he said in the throes of mania, I’m a manic depressive with grand delusions. At age 21, he was on MTV singing about what he called his nervous breakdown. And it became more and more obvious that there was something wrong. And drugs happened too.

(I have no idea why we had to see into the lead singer of the Butthole Surfers’ mouth during his interview.)

By 1986, he was taking lots of acid and delusional. His actions confused those who knew him and worried them as well. He accused relatives of being satanists and the police were called. There’s footage of him manic, describing his psychosis;  friends began to think he needed to be in hospital. And then his friends feared suicide.

Depressed, he  announced his retirement and started taking meds, describing the feeling as groggy. And then off he went on the meds-go-round, for what he calls his lost year. (Surprise, surprise, he put on weight.) After returning to New York, he lost it again and after a bad meltdown, went missing. Sonic Youth found him. Lather, rinse, repeat, right? He was homeless and resisted all attempts to help him. In my head I am a negative superman …

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Home again, hospital again, but he had managed to become successful in an underground cult kind of way, as well as badly psychotic in religious ways. Don’t play cards with satan, he’ll deal you an awful hand …

And so it went, round and round and around; police, hospital, meds. Shit got serious. He sent audio letters, so there’s first hand material from the psych hospital too. Demons drink the Mountain Dew …He got fatter, his career became more successful and he stopped his meds a few weeks before every performance, figuring his audience preferred him batshit. His voice was out of tune, but still he was a hit. His father wept recalling it.

The whole train wreck is documented (rather like Boy Interrupted), but – as usual – mania gets more time than depression does. Well, it’s far more camera friendly. I guess Kurt could have become interested in Daniel Johnston for the same reason he was fascinated by Frances Farmer, but initially Kurt was just wearing a shirt that Daniel’s manager sent him. Kurt wearing that tshirt made Daniel’s reputation explode, even though he was in a mental institution at the time.

Religious delusions kept reappearing and he decided that Metallica wanted to kill him. During the 90s, his career bombed. Dependent on and living with his parents in West Virginia, Daniel continued to make music and perform. I don’t even know my old songs. He began to have art exhibitions all around the world, as well as performing and having his songs covered by all sorts of luminaries. Still the religious psychoses and still unrequitedly in love with Laurie (since he was a teen).

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Given that the documentary ended in about 2003, obviously the next question is where is he now … well he is 54 and shaky, uses a zimmer frame and I guess he’s here on his official website, except that it hasn’t been updated since last April. A cursory search shows gigs and art in late 2014 though. He’s described variously as a bedroom troubadour, a garage pop singer and outsider artist and I think all of those labels fit. The word genius is a subjective term, and I was glad to see this article respectfully challenging it. I like some of his music, lots of his songs covered by other artists, and almost none of his art.

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I’d have liked more info about his depressions, his treatment and his steady decline, but of course, the documentary is certainly not only about bipolar. I found it sad, ultimately. There’s plenty of writing online about his ‘successful comeback’, but it’s the music and art that has come back, not necessarily the man. The final interview with his elderly parents was nothing short of heartbreaking. I hope Daniel is in good shape now and I’m sorry I couldn’t find any current info about his folks – please let me know if you can.

I’m not sure what I think of the documentary’s title either, because it is born of his delusions. He is already described too often as insane rather than unwell.

The Devil and Daniel Johnston is on YouTube, don’t be alarmed that it says El Diablo y DANIEL JOHNSTON, that’s just the Spanish subtitles. I couldn’t find you a freebie without ‘em. Anyway I enjoyed oh my lord in a song, being translated as señor.

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Cool review of the Neutral Milk Hotel gig in Sept 2014. He painted a mural in Austin Tx in November too.

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“Zap Your Brain to Change Your Mood” from Discovery News

From: http://news.discovery.com/tech/gear-and-gadgets/zap-your-brain-to-change-your-mood-150113.htm?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=DNewsSocial

I had my brain zapped to change my mood, and I lived to tell the tale. At a private demo with Thync at CES 2015, I experienced a futuristic electroshock therapy aimed at making me feel better.

It involved sitting with a small module attached to my forehead for 15 minutes while electric currents passed through my nerves to my brain.

The Blue Brain Project is working to build a human brain- inside a supercomputer. By simulating the neurons of a human brain, they can do all kinds of things that could have a huge impact on how we live in the real world.
NIH

Since the product is still being finalized, Thync declined to let us photograph the prototype module nor describe its shape, offering only screenshots of its app.

I arrived at the suite feeling emotionally distressed by personal matters (mostly my annoying boyfriend) and stressed out about the amount of work on my plate. As a Thync executive explained what the wearable really does, I was immediately keen to see if it could truly take my mind off my woes.

A rep stuck the modules onto my head and neck and started a 15-minute Calm session (I picked Calm, but Energy is an option).

As the program started, dots on the controlling smartphone app started to fill up while the nodes pulsed. I felt a prickling sensation as the current passed through my skin. The reps told me to keep increasing the intensity of the current to the point where it’s just barely uncomfortable, using the app. They also instructed me to adjust the current as soon as I got used to a level of intensity. We’re curious what the voltage of the max dosage might be.

After 10 minutes of sitting around watching the dots on the screen fill up, I started to feel relaxed and almost drowsy. How much that has to do with finally getting a chance to sit and catch my breath rather than the effects of Thync is hard to tell, but I definitely felt less bothered. The angry butterflies in my stomach seemed to fall asleep, and I could barely muster the wherewithal to recall what had upset me in the first place.

Thync told me the effects of the session would last about a half hour after the session ended. Sure enough, even the sight of an immensely long taxi line after I left the suite did not bother me at all. It was only 20 minutes after the session, when a couple in front of me got too affectionate, that I felt the stirrings of annoyance.

Again, it’s difficult to determine how effective Thync was, given the possibility that testers (myself included) could have been experiencing placebo effects. Also, I could have become more relaxed just by sitting in a comfortable, quiet suite for a full 15 minutes — a luxury most CES reporters don’t have.

The company is working with the FDA to make sure its device is safe for general consumption, but was quick to assure me that the device was in no way harmful or invasive. That definitely has yet to be seen.

If it is deemed safe, I could definitely see myself using Thync before I go to bed to ease me into a peaceful night’s slumber. We’ll have to wait till later in the year to finally see a consumer-ready version and more details of the device.


When Does Life Become Unlivable? Thinking of Frida

Dearest Readers, rest your minds, I am not there yet.

Today is rainy and soggy.  The ground is thawing out in our Spring Thaw, which is a prelude to actual Mud Season.  I grew up mostly in New England where there is a time of year called Mud Season, generally starting the end of February and going on and off through March.  It’s a beastly time because everything from horses to tractors–not to mention cars and pickup trucks–gets bogged down in the mud.  You can’t get any “purchase” (traction) because under the foot-and-a-half of mud is the frost line from the winter, which will stay frozen even into May, as any New England gravedigger will tell you.

What this weather means for me is misery.  My hands hurt.  My hips hurt.  My neck is even now packed in pillows so I don’t forget and move it.  Et cetera, ad nauseam.  Oh and my asthma is suffocating me.  Go away, damn it, and let me just LIVE!!!

I saw my orthopedist this morning for another cortisone shot into my right shoulder.  Unlike last time, when the needle slid in so easily I didn’t even feel it, he had to do quite a bit of wudging around till he was able to get the needle into the joint.  It hurt.

I remarked on this, in a casual tone, like this:  “Fuck a duck, Doc, what the hell are trying to do to me???”

Actually I did not frame it in those terms, more because I know that all 6’5″ 300 lb of him are made of good nature and kindness–he and his saintly wife have, on top of their own eight children, adopted eight more, all of them older children who needed a good home.  Even if he wasn’t on the short list for sainthood I would still try to maintain a modicum of dignity and say something more like, “Sonofabitch, Doc, that hurts!”

He grinned and mentioned casually that I am certainly going to need that shoulder operated on at some point, as the joint is proliferating with calcium deposits that will need to be “scraped off” (oh, I don’t like the sound of that!) so they don’t tear up the muscles.

Here my vision goes blank and all I can see is my father lumbering along with his elbows stuck out to the sides like a chimpanzee, because both of his shoulders had frozen up….eventually becoming bone-on-bone.  He was literally stuck, couldn’t do anything with his hands–and he was a ceramic artist.  Hell on Earth.  And it didn’t stop there.  The arthritis ate his spine, just like it’s been slowly but surely eating mine since the 1980’s.

I had emergency surgery on my neck in 1987 for a ruptured disc that was pressing on my spinal cord.  Over the next 3 years I ruptured 4 more.  The spine surgeons proposed installing steel rods on either side of mine spine–no thanks!  I’m a dancer, a horse-and-dog trainer, a hiker, an aspiring Yogini.  A rigid spine does not suit my lifestyle.  So I spent 12 months in a Minerva Jacket, which is a hard plastic shell that the brace shop guy molded directly to my Stockinet encased torso, from just below the armpits to just above the groin, so that I could kind of sit.  It had Velcro fasteners in front.  I was to be encased in this walking tomb for 23 3/4 hours a day–with 15 minutes off to bathe.  I admit that I had to take the damn thing off at night.  Nobody could sleep with that thing cutting into your skin no matter how many layers of cast padding, etc., they fixed up for me to try to make it more comfortable.  I even coaxed the brace shop guy (“You have a perfect hourglass figure…!  He crooned, while I was immobilized in plaster yet again…stupid sod, I thought, only worse) into punching hundreds of 1 cm holes in the thing when it got to be summer and I was overheating in it.

Yah.  I spent that entire year standing up 120 hours a week–my work week–because the tension on my spine from sitting down sent the nerve pain all the way into my feet, and all the way into my hands.  But I soldiered on.  I refused to let the pain stop me.  I was young, and had the iron will that sustains my people.

Look, I follow a lot of people who have it much worse than I do.  Much, much worse.  And they keep right on living, kvetching now and then as is their right.

But I am staring into the face of a dilemma, which is:  I can’t work if I can’t look down.

Say what?

I can’t work if I can’t look down.  Not at my regular streams of income, at any rate.

I had to give up practicing regular medicine, not exclusively because of my brain, which wasn’t doing so well either but got right-side-up very quickly once I got the proper diagnosis and the proper meds, but mostly because my hands gave out due to whatever it is that is eating away at my connective tissue.

So I relied upon my acupuncture training.  Palpating meridians and slipping needles into the right places takes no strength at all.  But damn it, the last few treatments I’ve done, I swear I’ve squawked as much as my client!  I can’t look down without incurring an acute, unremitting ache that spreads into my shoulders and down my arms.  Nerve pain.

Writing.  I don’t sell much yet, but then I haven’t made much of an effort.  I get going with writing and at some point my hands seize up and won’t work at all.  I am experimenting with Dragon Dictate.  It is a pain in the arse, but many people swear by it (I swear at it, cliches be damned!).  I’m starting a proofreading and copyediting business.  That should be a good income stream, if I can market it successfully.  There must be a way to mark-up copy using Dragon or something, right?  At least I can get my computer at eye level.  God, I can’t stop thinking about Frida Kalho.

Money.  At the moment I’m fine.  I made one single good investment in my life, which sustains me now.  That stream of income goes away the moment I turn 65, if I make it that far.  I’m socking away as much as I can, but one little bit of extra expense can throw me seriously in the hole.  It’s unsustainable.  I have to find another way of supporting myself.

This is where the equations meet.  I cannot live as an impoverished cripple.  Please do not play the “Oh, no, you’re going to be just fine” game.  I get that enough from people I live around.

The truth is, I am not and will not be fine.  I have two progressive diseases, and if one doesn’t kill me, the other will make my life a living hell, just as it did to my father.

Dad didn’t want to live like that either, but he got taken by surprise.  It was as if he woke up one morning mostly paralyzed.  He was too bunged up to even take his own life!  So he lived another 5 years in unrelenting pain, totally dependent on the kindness (or unkindness, as the case often was) of others.

When we were alone he would ask me, “How much would it take?”  He was referring to his insulin: how much would it take, to take him out of his misery?  I could not, would not tell him.  He would smile sadly, saying “I know you can’t tell me.”  And we would change the subject.

Gentle readers, there will come a time when those two lines intersect: the downward spiral of my health and productivity, and the linear decline of my ability to sustain myself with food, shelter, medicines, and everything else one needs.

No.  I do not want to enter a nursing facility.  Neither do I want to be dependent on others, which is convenient because there ARE no others to be dependent upon.

I do not want to be locked into a crippled body the way my father was, until he died an excruciating death, screaming out his last hours on earth through blood-filled lungs.

I pray that I will know the right moment.  I pray even more that if there is a Deity, that he/she/it will take me out of this life before I have to make that tough decision.

Pray with me now, dear readers.

Pray that I get to dance at my son’s wedding.

Pray that I get to hold my first grandchild.

Pray that I get to have a sweet, gentle kiss of Death, and go Home before I have to make that tough decision.

Frida’s last diary entry, the night before her not-entirely-accidental death, went something like this:  “I hope my end is joyful, and I hope to God never to return.”


You’re Just Like Me: Unknown

So you have a mental illness.. Which one? major depression at 25 (a long time ago). How do you cope with your mental illness? back then it was prescription medication, now I prayer. What are 3 words that you would describe how your illness makes you feel? Isolated, reclusive, marginal If you could talk to …

The Faceless Girl

In reply to the WordPress Daily Prompt Jan.14, 2015 Connect the Dots Open your nearest book to page 82. Take the third full sentence on the page, and work it into a post somehow. ________________________________________________________________________________________   The closest book to me just happened to be a (mostly) picture book, entitled Makeup Is Art.  When I turned to page 82, this… Read more →

Intensive Care

Collage art, greeting card artSince July, I’ve been in a program called Intensive Psychiatric Rehabilitation.  It’s Medicaid-funded and designed to help those of us with “serious and persistent mental illness to achieve goals that improve success and satisfaction in living, learning, working and socializing.”

It’s like nothing I’ve ever experienced in any kind of health care service—thorough, gentle, involved, deep.  For these first six months, I’ve met with my IPR Facilitator (Aly) two to three times a week just gauging my motivation and willingness to go through the process—doing lots of assessments, looking at self-awareness and life satisfaction, and meeting in a small group to hear how others are doing the same.

I believe my participation in IPR is a big reason for my greater stability during the last half of 2014, but maybe not because of the actual work I do in the program.  I get to spend four to six hours a week with a caring professional, talking about my life and my illness, who gives me useful feedback.  Considering that I see my therapist weekly, that gives me up to seven hours a week of therapeutic support.

I can’t begin to explain how lovely that is, to have somewhere to go every several days a week where I feel safe, heard, challenged, and successful all at the same time.  I have felt parts of me relaxing that have been clenched for years.  The notion that I could be kinder and gentler to myself grew naturally from this place of safety and care.  The outrageous idea that everything about my life—the wild and warp-speed mood swings, the practical struggles with money and relationships, my weight, my compulsions, my delusions, my mistakes and mis-steps—could be accepted and given a place at my internal table became my new mantra.  “Yes, that, too.”

This increase in professional support prodded me to start searching in different ways for more natural support.  I found a wonderful, active community at the Des Moines Unitarian Church, signed-up for a class there in SoulCollage®, met some interesting people and sang.  I started reaching out to my old friends in Minnesota.  I joined Facebook, fer cripes sake.

World She InhabitsOver the last few weeks, my work in IPR has taken me on a new journey of discovery.  My focus in the program is on my Living Environment, to assess and eventually set a goal about where I live.  This could also include a “Staying” goal if my current home turns out to be best for me.  We looked at all the places I’ve ever lived, which ones I liked most and least and why.  Aly asked me to imagine my perfect space, perfect neighborhood, perfect part of the country—to dream big and with extravagance.  We’ve spent time tweezing out my values and preferences and laying them over my ideas about home.

One of the many assessment parameters Aly used was to imagine what the significant people in my life would say about my current living environment, about the idea of moving elsewhere, and what their concerns might be.  I try hard not to presume what others think about me, so I wasn’t sure.  But I thought in general they considered me successful  (This is an IPR term.  It means that you generally stay out of jail and the hospital, that you can perform self-care, do basic housekeeping, and partake in enjoyable activities in your home.  Luckily, I rock at being successful).

This exercise made me curious to know what my friends and family really thought, so I started asking them.  It’s always a little scary to ask people what they think of me.  They all carry memories that I’ve lost, things I’ve said in the past, events and experiences fried out of existence by ECT.  Plus, an outsider’s view of my often-times incomprehensible behavior can carry an emotional charge for them.  I’ve done a lot of weird and hurtful things in my bipolarness, and turning over those rocks can be deadly.  But, getting that outside perspective is valuable for someone with mental illness.  We get trapped in our own faulty musings.  Someone else’s reality can be shocking, but life-saving.

As it turned out, they do think I’m successful, but another theme started appearing.  As I’ve reached out to my friends in Minnesota, they all to a person have said, “We don’t know why you moved in the first place.  It never made sense to us.  This is your home.”  And even my sister, who orchestrated my exodus from Minneapolis, said, “You’ve worked hard, made friends and have a routine in Marshalltown, but Minnesota is home…”

My compulsive side would do something with this information.  I’m choosing to just add it to my IPR file along with all the other assessments and data.  It will be a while yet before I actually choose a goal in my Living Environment.  In the meantime, I want to keep practicing this kinder, gentler attitude.  I want to keep attending UU services on Sunday.  I want to schedule my next visit to Minneapolis and spend time with those people who still love me and remember me.  I want to spend time with the people here in Iowa who love and support me, too.  I want to keep an open mind, explore, evaluate.  I want to keep being successful.

Because, you know, I’m on an Adventure.


Hrmph, Postponed!

I received a call yesterday to let me know that the doctor was ill and that I needed to reschedule. So now I’m in to see her next week. I’m less annoyed by this than I thought I would be… and less relieved, too. I tend to work myself up to the point of vomiting when it comes to physical health appointments, though that’s improved somewhat lately!

Also, of course, there’s the prepwork involved. I’m only just learning how to be a patient since moving to the UK; I grew up with pretty much no healthcare whatsoever, and there’s only so much you can confess to in the military without fear of med boarding. But I’ve learned from my mental health stuff that it does benefit me to have extensive notes and thoughts and my theories on why X is Y. Which is to say, it’s gone over well with my mental health stuff, so hopefully it’ll apply to my physical stuff as well.

There was also the epiphany I had this morning on me and getting my physical health looked at. You see, somewhere I absorbed that I was healthy (I wasn’t), that I emphatically was not permitted to ask for anything, and that I was supposed to be massively grateful for whatever crumbs washed up my way. And I commented to my husband, and he concurred — this is why I go in for physical health things and then self-sabotage. I go in and then demur, and it’s like… why self, why. I’m going in because I really want help, so. I grew up being told my health was fine, that I was healthy, that any time I tried to ask for help with illness, I’d have an n-parent deciding they had to one up me to shut me up (which meant no help). Lulz narcissists? Yarp.

But anyways, this realisation is a good one, because it means that I am probably going to do a lot better job self-advocating for care. I wrote a nice, concise letter yesterday to give to the doctor today (now next week) that outlines the greater picture, as well as the three specific things I am looking to be referred to in the appointment. I’m still not completely sure I’ve got the how to be a patient thing down (and there seems to be a dearth of guidance online), but at least I’m feeling a teense more optimistic? We’ll see how it goes next week.

As for brain stuff… eh, it goes. I’ve been having a harder time getting to sleep again in spite of the Seroquel, which is annoying. Like, it shouldn’t take me two hours of reading to nod off. And I know, some people are itchin’ to say you shouldn’t read in bed because some stupid magazine said X or Y, but I’ve been using it to fight insomnia since I was 5, so I know it’s what works for me. ;D And because I can’t read long stretches of text off of screens, I read from books, so none of that light/screen issue that seems to come up even more than ‘wah, don’t read in bed’. I’m hoping it’s just a random rough patch and it’ll smooth out, but we’ll see. No idea when I next see the psychologist, but if I had to guess, it’ll probably be March. I don’t foresee any issues between now and then, but y’all know the deal — bipolar requires eternal vigilance.

Hope everyone is doing well out there.

<3

 

Wherever I go. I’m still gonna be me.

blahpolar:

Awesome hyperbole-and-a-half ish illustrations of the depression trap. Also, “happy” birthday to her. Wtf do we wish depressed people on their birthdays? I usually just avoid humanity on mine.

Originally posted on Depression Darling:

What is Depression? What does it feel like? What is it? Is it anything? They say it’s a condition and even an illness. For the first time, I feel like I can’t actually live like this. If I’m not better in a week then what? That’s what I’m trying to ascertain. There is no alternative. There is no reason to feel this way, yet I still do. No matter how guilty I feel or bitter or jealous that others can do life so much better than me. There is no reason for this. There has been no trauma. Except maybe an existential crises. A geographical question of what next? What now? Now that it has all come to this crescendo? Everything over the last few years has come down to this.

And I can’t escape it. Wherever I go I am still me. You can’t go on holiday from yourself…

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