Daily Archives: June 10, 2015

Gut Health

Originally posted on Bipolar, Unemployed & Lost:
I have horrible GUT Health. This could also be why I have a lot of things go on with me. Check your gut, people!

Simple Self-Care

Got my hair cut today – a simple act of self-care. Took a picture of it, but didn’t like the photo. Hate how I look in photos. Same haircut as my Gravatar, but maintaining the cut helps me to feel…

mark lanegan

Fear of Judgment

There is a large stack of clothes, folded, but piled haphazardly on a table in my laundry room.  My mom is due over in about an hour with her boyfriend and her business partner, to deliver a clothes dryer, as mine went out about a month ago.  I am tied in knots about it.

Her coming over, knowing my house and yard and et cetera are not up-to-par.  Its bothering me.  I have been busy today, including making a trip the gym.  I have not thought about my pile of clean clothes, the bathroom that could use picking up, or the stack of therapy-related paperwork scattered across my desk lately because… well, I’ve been busy living my life.

Now I dread what she is going to say about it.  My priorities, in the past, have been on keeping the boyfriend-of-the-moment happy and surviving bipolar disorder and making sure Kizzie has food and water.

Now, in the present day, I am focused on making sure I exercise and take my meds and stay positive and attend appointments and do, I dunno, all kinds of other stuff, it seems.  I feel busy, even though I am not currently working.

My house is less messy than usual, than in the past, I suppose.  I still feel, in this moment, like a failure.  I feel like a failure, and like I am going to get lectured about the clothes that are not put away and the tub that could be scrubbed and so on and so forth.  I am worried, I am anxious.

I refuse to take a PRN Ativan for this ridiculousness.  Some day, I am going to have to get over concerns that my family is judging me and get over people telling me what to do, how to do it, when to do it, and so on.  Having a house that is not perfect, is not indicative of my mental stability.

Did you hear me, Rosa?  You are not crazy, just because your laundry is not put away.  Yeah, your mom might say something.  So what if she does?  Does that end the world?

No, it doesn’t.  For the past few days, I have been ALMOST happy.  When I think about interacting with ANYONE in my family, I fear judgment.  I keep people away, because I do not really think my clean laundry, tucked away inside the laundry room is harming anyone.

I really get tired of the judgmental voices in my head that tell me I am not good enough, not pretty enough, not skinny enough, not a good enough housekeeper.  I hate that those voices get reinforced, it seems to me, by whispers of my past and the condemnations of the present.

I hate that I have “been there, done that” a kazillion times with bipolar episodes and recovery periods.  That I have a strong sense of déjà vu, right in the here-and-now.  That I am starting all effing over again.


Filed under: Daily

Fear of Judgment

There is a large stack of clothes, folded, but piled haphazardly on a table in my laundry room.  My mom is due over in about an hour with her boyfriend and her business partner, to deliver a clothes dryer, as mine went out about a month ago.  I am tied in knots about it.

Her coming over, knowing my house and yard and et cetera are not up-to-par.  Its bothering me.  I have been busy today, including making a trip the gym.  I have not thought about my pile of clean clothes, the bathroom that could use picking up, or the stack of therapy-related paperwork scattered across my desk lately because… well, I’ve been busy living my life.

Now I dread what she is going to say about it.  My priorities, in the past, have been on keeping the boyfriend-of-the-moment happy and surviving bipolar disorder and making sure Kizzie has food and water.

Now, in the present day, I am focused on making sure I exercise and take my meds and stay positive and attend appointments and do, I dunno, all kinds of other stuff, it seems.  I feel busy, even though I am not currently working.

My house is less messy than usual, than in the past, I suppose.  I still feel, in this moment, like a failure.  I feel like a failure, and like I am going to get lectured about the clothes that are not put away and the tub that could be scrubbed and so on and so forth.  I am worried, I am anxious.

I refuse to take a PRN Ativan for this ridiculousness.  Some day, I am going to have to get over concerns that my family is judging me and get over people telling me what to do, how to do it, when to do it, and so on.  Having a house that is not perfect, is not indicative of my mental stability.

Did you hear me, Rosa?  You are not crazy, just because your laundry is not put away.  Yeah, your mom might say something.  So what if she does?  Does that end the world?

No, it doesn’t.  For the past few days, I have been ALMOST happy.  When I think about interacting with ANYONE in my family, I fear judgment.  I keep people away, because I do not really think my clean laundry, tucked away inside the laundry room is harming anyone.

I really get tired of the judgmental voices in my head that tell me I am not good enough, not pretty enough, not skinny enough, not a good enough housekeeper.  I hate that those voices get reinforced, it seems to me, by whispers of my past and the condemnations of the present.

I hate that I have “been there, done that” a kazillion times with bipolar episodes and recovery periods.  That I have a strong sense of déjà vu, right in the here-and-now.  That I am starting all effing over again.


Filed under: Daily

I’m Unhappy and Unsettled

I’m so lonely. I want to go out and do things and have fun. I’m tired of being in the house by myself all the time. I feel like I am going crazy.

I think trying to bury my head in weed over my friends impending death was a mistake. I’ve just spend every single day high and stagnant. Today I am not going to do that dammit.

Today I cried over watching someone doing something outside on TV. There is nothing to walk to here and I don’t drive though so I don’t know what to do.

How do I stop feeling so lonely?


What The Mental Healthcare Professionals Don’t Tell You

THEY JUST DON’T KNOW.

We’re taught to respect doctors because they’re educated, they’re experienced, science is science…But when it comes to mental healthcare, for every one thing that’s been learned over the last hundred years, there’s a dozen of questions they still have no answers for. A lot of counselors and psychiatrists do NOT admit this to patients. And the ones who do, downplay it because they have their precious DSM that tells them which cluster of symptoms qualifies you for a disorder.

Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. Meaning, lots of research of lots of people and a consensus on what the masses suffer which qualifies as disorder A, B, C, D. It is not the least bit comforting to know when I talk to a psych professional, I am little more than one more number, one more statistic. Not an individual. Not someone with different genetics, physiology, different past experiences that left an imprint. Nope. Just. A. Statistic.

Also not publicized by the professionals are their own personal experiences, biases, beliefs. Some still use rorschach tests and consider it combative if you tell them it looks like someone spilled ink on paper. Some are old school and think Freud had legitimate points rather than just some sort of obsession with phallic symbols and mommy. Some are against medications. Some do nothing but push pills and “hope” a counselor keeps you from killing yourself. It’s a mixed bag, and for many of us, we’re kind of stuck with what we can get when you consider the average cost of a ten minute med check is over a hundred dollars.

This means we are also stuck with whatever their issues are, their beliefs, their experiences. If they knew a string a patients who were faking it or simply addicted to substances and creating their own mental issues…YOU get stuck with that, no right to individuality. Mental healthcare professionals are HUMAN. They go into the field for the right reasons for the most part, but make no mistake. THEY ARE JUST AS FUCKED UP AS THE REST OF US. Your male doctor might have issues with females and objectivity can be tainted by such feelings. Your female counselor may hate brunettes and not take you as seriously as a blonde client. That psychologist with all the alphabets behind their name, all the experience and beaming smile…may think all mental illness is behavioral and treat you as such.

It’s easy to feel doomed so most just choose not to think of the reality of what I am saying. And I get it. We’re programmed from an early age that questioning those in authority- doctors, cops, et al- is some sort of defiance issue. But it’s all a case of “who watches the watchmen.” If you don’t question your doctor and stand up for yourself, who will advocate for you? I’m not talking defiance for no reason. But if you don’t feel you are being listened to, you have EVERY right to speak up. Few of us would put up with a rude, dismissive cashier at the store. Yet none of us think twice when deferring to doctors and such.

Professionals may have the education, the training, the experience…But they are fallible, same as we are. Which is why it’s important to SPEAK UP. And if the doctor brushes you off, speak up louder. I’m that situation right now with my doctor. He is insisting Trileptal is the right choice over my faithful Lamictal and I do not agree. The trileptal has made me feel as bad as Lithium, which was the whole point in switching to Lamictal. Did he think raise the dose? Nope. Just toss out the flavor of the week mood stabilizer. I am shocked by how many people are on Trileptal and yet this is my first doctor to ever even mention it to me. Which means…along with the Latuda and Seroquel, the flavor of the week has changed. Because the STATISTICS say X amount of people respond better to this than the others. Not because Z works better for patient Morgue. Nope. Flavor.Of. The. Weak.(Not a misspell.)

I have no intention of caving in to this doctor. I will speak up because I’ve proven to myself part of my problem is Trileptal. Does this make it a bad medication? Hell, no, lots of people respond very well, have no problems, and it helps. But for me, if side effects prove to be a hindrance and the medication doesn’t work so well…Deal breaker, even if the doctor is the expert. Because none of his education and experience entitle him to know me better than I know myself. I am a patient of mental healthcare. I am not feeble minded, lacking in intelligence, and unable to gauge when things are worse rather than better. Will he listen? Who knows. But I am to the point where I’d rather go off all meds than take Trileptal. I was blaming the Latarda aftermath but the last couple of weeks of nightmares and numbness, feeling disconnected…I don’t care if three million people surveyed didn’t experience it, I AM.

It’s insulting, really, to be put through this living hell because psychiatry is an inexact science. Twenty years ago, I was on Effexor for almost a year. It quit working. My doctor told me to just stop taking it. I started coming unglued, hallucinating. I called his office. They insisted it was my imagination, there’s no withdrawal from anti depressants.

Nowadays, tapering off SSRI’s is common because they do know there can be withdrawal in some patients.

My new doctor, unfortunately, is of the mind that there’s no withdrawal from SSRI’s and you can take your dose once a day at any time and the levels in your blood will remain the same. Which is at odds with what the ten doctors before him said. And honestly, I like his way better, I suck at remembering to do this at 8 a.m., that at noon, this at five, that atten pm…Once a day works for me. But am I getting the full benefit? Mind you, this is the one who said Latuda had very few side effects, suicidal thoughts wasn’t one of them, and there was no aftermath. Once again, it’s based on STATISTICS. I just happened to be one of the unfortunate souls who reacted outside those stats and was basically told I made it all up. This doctor is super nice, friendly, not a jerk at all. Yet I find myself questioning his medical advice. Not out of disrespect, but out of my own research and experience. I don’t think this guy is even ten years younger than me, which means in spite of his education and all…I’ve got ten more years experience living with mental illness and treating it.

I have a right to be skeptical, to have concerns, to ask questions, to do my own research. Because while he may be a wonderful human being and a great doctor for the statistics…It doesn’t make him one that is going to help me. Do I hold it against him? No. Doctors are entitled to be individuals, have their own beliefs, biases, and operate within the nicely wrapped box of the DSM and the cases they’ve treated. I think I’m giving him more benefit of the doubt than he’s giving me or else I wouldn’t walk out feeling like I’m somehow troubling him by not caving to his every edict. He has the experience and statistics to go by. I have only my own personal experience. Until you’ve fallen victim to the horrendous side effects experienced by too few to be considered “serious”…You don’t really know, you’re just guessing based on numbers and studies.

The point of this post is…Remember doctors are only human. They make mistakes, have biases, and your best interest is often just the party line. Psychiatry doesn’t really know how the brain works so intricately as far as mental illness goes. You can’t expect an expert on what is essentially a guessing game. What you can do is, be an advocate for yourself. Speak up. If you’re not being heard, speak up more loudly. And if that doesn’t work, reach out to the staff, the nurses, receptionists. I did and it got their attention. I don’t regret it. Rather being a number, I suddenly became a name with a voice who wasn’t going to be quashed.

I wish this post were better written, filled with studies and facts and numbers. Actually, I don’t. Because we get enough of all that from our “treatment”. This post is one individual’s point of view. Because we are allowed to have one even if our years of mental healthcare tries to deny us of one with threats of non compliance and being “irrational.” So repost this anywhere you think it needs to be heard. We are the patients, but we are also the ones PAYING for their services. That does not include rudeness, dismissal, or having to accept their treatment making us worse as opposed to better.

Speak up. Be heard. Politely. Calmly. Leave the sporks at home.

 

 


Public Service Announcement From Morgueticia

Today my Cymbalta increased from 30 mg to 60 mg. Which means I am prone to some pretty abrupt mood swings in the next few days, probably hypomania followed by a crash. So if I seem to be posting too much, don’t get bent. Truth is, most days the only person I see is my kid and she talks to much, I relish saying little. My blog is where I spew whatever random shit is haunting me. Were you to meet me, you’d find I don’t say much unless others initiate conversation. I’m content to listen, to live in my own mind, to avoid conflict by daring to be honest and tell people how I’m truly feeling. So…Ignore the flood posts (if they do come) and the chatty Kathy act.

Med increases/weans/decreases are a bitch.

Nothing on the agenda today. It’s supposed to be 92, which means, we will be marinating in our own sweat. Ah, fun mother daughter activities. I feel shitty for not being able to take Spook to do fun stuff, but hell, even the closest playground is ten miles round trip and that costs gas. I was going to send her to that Y program (hinging on the scholarship thing) but then I was told getting her there and home would be on my. That’d be about forty bucks a week in gas. Not that I am cheap. I just don’t have the money. Bills and necessities first, all else second. She even got a freebie ticket to Six Flags for her reading in Kindergarten but guess what. I can’t afford an adult ticket nor can I afford gas for the four hour trip there and back, as well as meals.

These are the times I get super frustrated and pissed off with myself. Why can’t I just get my shit together already? Get a fucking job, support my kid properly, stop being this “never enough money” whiner? It’s not lac of desire, not laziness. But the one thing employers want is stability and I cannot guarantee that right now. Maybe ever. Unless I could work from home without a set schedule to accommodate my insanity. No one could be sicker of this shit than I am. It’s going to be a long summer of boredom and my kid telling me about said boredom and I’m going to be yanking out clumps of hair. There’s only so much sunlight and heat I can handle, not to mention when I do go outside to play with her…Her attention span is about two minutes for any activity…GRRR. I just want to be stable. Is that asking too much?

Last night was a welcome breath of fresh air. Once I put my kid to bed, I retired to my bedroom. It had cooled off. I decided to read a bit, slow my mind down. I ended up being awake til midnight actually finishing a book. It only took me two weeks. Woo hoo. If that’s my capability for things I love…

It took two hours to fall asleep. Scumbag brain was super active in spite of half the night time dose of Xanax. Then I tossed and turned and kept waking up. Sleep has become this double edge sword. The dreams were numerous, fleeting, yet so prevalent I don’t feel all that rested. The teeth gnashing continues. At least when I woke up this morning I didn’t think, oh, god, let me sleep some more. I’m dressed. All before ten a.m. Winner, winner, chicken dinner.

Now since this was such a dull mindless post…maybe something to jazz it up.

badass bitchy dust ebolaface high five happy pills fucket listLaughter is the best medicine, but don’t let that get out or the pharma companies will patent it and started charging thirty bucks a chuckle.


love is a beautiful bruise

Things and stuff…

Grief is the price we pay for love, quoth Queen Elizabeth II (and she definitely knows grief). You love, you lose, you grieve, you swear youll never love again, you love more. Youre human and without love, youre not human anymore. Inhuman and inhumane, in fact. Plenty of people suffer loss after loss after loss; the losses shock and hurt you. They empty you out and hit your heart like a ten ton truck. Sometimes you just wait, surrounded by the shrapnel of your entire life and your being. Sometimes everything hurts, sometimes nothing touches you at all. Sometimes you rage and despair. Sometimes your soul shakes and then tightens into the foetal position.

(I dont give a fuck about the queen tbh.)

It isnt limited to distance and death – it can be unrequited or impossible too. But we love regardless, we love because we know how much the absence of love hurts. We love when we are wounded and when we are whole, and we love our way back to either or both of those states too. We love naturally, we love when we know we shouldnt. We just love.

You dont need sad streets for grief, you can feel your heart shatter into a thousand pieces in paradise. Distraction helps, until you begin to wonder where you lost yourself, and then you grieve again. And so you must grieve and grieve and feel your way through your own gasping veins. You must grieve, not until you get over it or through it. You must grieve until you gentle your grief, tame it. Eventually, you will be friends with it, because it reminds you of the worth of what you lost and the fierce nature of love. Grief opens distance and love closes it,  but without the journey, what are you?

If you dont love, or cant, or wont, you betray your own humanity and stunt your world. If you cause damage in the name of love, you betray love. When somebody hurts you so badly that you stop feeling and stop loving, its lonely and bewildering. When love returns, the hurt heals fast. Loving enough to let go is devastation of the soul, but it pares away pretence, and the lonely flame of the love that it grows is intricate and shining.

Love is instinct. Its a beautiful bruise. Loss isnt the opposite of love, it is its twin. Love, babies, and grieve too. Both mean that youre alive.

Aftermath

The middle child is feeling better this morning but not yet up to her usual self.  She’s going to try eating bland foods today and see how that goes.  She is still sleepy and tired, probably from ingesting very little yesterday aside from a cup or two of watered-down Gatorade.  So we will see how she does throughout the day.

None of the rest of us are showing signs of it, so we should be okay unless it has a long incubation period or something.  We’re hoping not.

ONe more hoop to jump through.  Remember me training to speak for the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill?  I emailed the director to see when I might be able to start speaking so I could make plans for the summer.  Yesterday I got a envelope in the mail and found out I need to be fingerprinted to be in the speaker’s bureau.  I was a little shocked by this–I need to go to the police station and be fingerprinted and have it sent to NAMI, along with a copy of my driver’s license and my car insurance card.  I really do want to do the speaking, but this kind of stuff seems a little much for what I’m going to be doing.  I think I’m just going to wait until after I’ve recovered from the surgery to send it in because if they have to do a background check, that will take forever and I will be into my surgery recovery before they can schedule anything.  So that was a little bit of a bummer.