Daily Archives: July 11, 2015

A System That Actually Helps Mental Health Issues

10:57 p.m and I still have a couple of sporks left.

The secret? Basically giving myself permission from the word go to “do nothing.” I bribed myself to blog by getting dressed and such, but for the most part…I allowed myself to just feel depressed and do nothing.

I ended up washing, and folding, and putting away all the laundry, including bedding. IF I had put the screws to myself and said YOU MUST DO THIS TODAY OR YOU WILL BE FORCED TO RIP YOUR OWN FINGERNAILS OUT WITH PLIERS….It’d still be sitting there and I’d have bloody nail beds. I don’t respond well to pressure, self imposed or otherwise. I need wiggle room, which for the most part, the world simply doesn’t allow. Everything is on a rigid schedule, must be done at THIS time then this has to be done at THAT time…I can’t keep up. I try. I just fail. But when I let myself react on my own time in my own way…

I piddled around the house doing little things and actually accomplished things. Not a lot, nothing major, but I was up, moving around, and doing SOMETHING. Spook and I went to the two yard sales. I spent less than ten bucks and got her six shirts and three skirts that are like new for school. I even found a new tube of lipstick and a package of “cocktail pictures with recipes” fridge magnets for myself for under $2. I felt good for finding her clothes, some of which still had store tags on them and had never been worn. She’s gonna be stylin’ in Babyphat and Gap and I didn’t have to sacrifice my spleen. That’s always a rush for me.

We were invited to R and his missus’ for supper and t0 hang out. Their granddaughter wasn’t there but Spook played well enough on her own and I got some adult company that didn’t involve topics like “Frozen” and “Elsa”.  It didn’t suck. The wine may have helped. I can’t remember the last time I had fun socializing without alcohol being involved. Problematic? Perhaps. But I think alcohol is used far more often by anxiety sufferers than they’re willing to admit because it’s “bad”. I’m at least honest about it. Socializing, for me, without a slight alcohol boost, is miserable. Doesn’t matter how hard I try. It is what it is, and one of the first counselors I ever had (when I was 13) explained it excellently: “There’s nothing wrong with you, Niki. If you’d been born in a big city, you’d be considered normal and awesome and have all kinds of friends. But here, in the rural area, no one gets you so they bully you and you’re isolated.”

I’ve spent many years trying to get to a larger city where I’d be the “norm”. Six times, in fact. But of course, the money always runs out. I’m not good employment material, so I end up right back here in Armpit, USA. (Where I am still unemployable). It sounds like an excuse but honestly, not being homeless is less an excuse and more of a necessity. Were it not for that little fact, I’d never have come back here. I’d have rather sold my body on the streets than ever come back here. Unfortunately, Boticelli bodies don’t sell these days. (And yeah, I am fully aware of how skanky it sounds, but unless you’re a square peg being forced into a round hole and getting criticized for not fitting your whole life…you don’t know what desperation, and how far it will make you go, is.)

Suffice it to say…I showered, did all that laundry, and socialized today. Never did mow the lawn, no matter the heightened paranoia the landlord would either say something or just have his people mow it and charge me for it. I figure, the neighbor girl didn’t mow for three months (til today) so if they wanna go to war over me not mowing for a week…Let’s do that and find out why section 8 tenants get away with murder yet get all their repairs without a complaint while I pay my rent out of my check and  nothing ever gets fixed. Sounds like a lawsuit waiting to happen to me, and I am just feeling nasty enough to bring it.

My mom called to inform she’s having Spook’s sixth birthday party at Chuck E Cheese. I dared point out it’s on a Friday and dad and stepmonster do work so they might not be able to make it..I was promptly treated to a mom tirade about how it’s basically blasphemous to have a kid’s birthday party the day after their birthday. *Crazy biatch*. It’s her money, though. I also had the audacity to *suggest* that instead of toys Spook will just turn around and break, if we could all get her a cartridge for her LeapPad since she has none. That…did not go over well because ya know, educational stuff isn’t fun. Never mind the kid loves the LeapPad and playing games and LEARNING. My mom thinks it’s torture so she must transfer it to Spook. Oddly, when Mrs. R asked what they could get Spook for her birthday and I mentioned the cartridges…she thought it was awesome and said, “You’ve got all R’s credit card numbers, you find one she likes and go ahead and order it from us.”

Only in my fucked up family would something educational and fun be frowned upon. I swear I was switched at birth, I don’t belong to those “reading books are punishment” people.

Though I guess if I were to be so snobby, there’d be a bunch of people castigating me as evil because I think Harry Potter books are utterly boring. To each their own, ya know? But when your family considers reading the Enquirer strenuous brain work…Jebus. It’s a wonder I am at all literate, let alone trying to instill it in my kid.

My kid, who had a major tantrum when we got home and I insisted she sleep in her own bed tonight. She cried, bawled, thrashed, crying out, “But I need to be in the same room as you, I love you so much!”

Oddly, when she defied me earlier, broke something, and I stood her against the wall, I was evil and stupid. It’s like bipolar 101, for 5 year olds, Though I am sure the fickleness and dislike of the word “no” are normal kid behavior…I think it’s because she plays that damn Katy Perry song “Hot N Cold’ constantly…”Got a case of love bipolar.” Maybe a disservice to those of us with bipolar, but not inaccurate.

And I am FULLY aware of the mis use of the term “bipolar” and how most bipolar people find it offensive…But there are times when it just fits. Like midwest weather. Monday it’s rainy and cold, Friday it’s sunny and sweltering…BI frigging POLAR. Not to be insulting because bipolar is also a term used in TV repair.Just fact.

In all honesty…I just wish the ass trash DSM would revert back to calling it “manic depression”. Because whether it be one or two or the emerging third category of cyclothymia…It’s mania. It’s depression. Manic depression. If you wanna give it a name involving the word “polar”, how about TRIPOLAR? Because one, two, or three, we all go through manic episodes, depressive episodes, as well as stable episodes. TRIPOLAR.

I have, as usual, digressed into a rant, but I think the point of this post remains the same. Sometimes, “pushing” yourself is as toxic as the depression itself. So by giving yourself permission to complete a small goal then say “fuck it” the rest of the day..You can end up accomplishing more, if you’re at all like me. (Ya know, the rebel without a cause type who caves under pressure yet flourishes under “it’s my choice”).

I have been watching Person Of Interest from season 1, episode 1. And I soo wish I had a purpose like that. Helping people. Yet ya know, also getting to blow shit up and shooting bad guys in the kneecap. I am not without a goal or desire or motivation. I just don’t see how bouncing mundane job to mundane job due to mental health instability qualifies as a purpose. I have enough bad references, enough of a rep as a “flake” and no one really cares if it’s due to mental illness. If I could go off the grid, do something out of the mundane, help people…Yeah, that’s  my dream. Unfortunately, the panic would likely get me and the good people killed. I still wish I could do it.

They say that you can tell a lot about a person by what they write. I have noticed in ALL my novels I’ve written (never published) the theme is the same: strong willed women who manage to overcome whatever obstacle they come up against. You’d think if I can write it, I could do it. Sadly, pure desire does not turn you into something you are not. If it counted for fuck all, I’d be a vampire ripping out the throats of all my enemies and yet saving innocent people with  my vampy fangy goodness.

No matter. I showered today.VICTORY. I did laundry. I socialized. My kid didn’t make me go hide in a closet. I could focus on all I didn’t do.

Instead…I am gonna focus on what I DID do today and feel good about it. Had I pressured myself, I wouldn’t have done a damned thing. By setting tiny goals with tiny rewards…

I think I am on the right track. And it didn’t cost me $250 for a forty five minute session,


Radar Day

Every three months the apartments in our complex get inspected for bedbugs.  We had an infestation a few years ago (remember when the varmints were everywhere?)  Since then regular inspections became mandatory.  While I haven’t had any creepy crawlies since the first outbreak, I know if an apartment next to mine becomes infested, I’m at risk.  So, I’m glad to get the notice.  Not because I’m worried about parasites.  Oh, no.  I’m thrilled because I know Radar is coming.

boxelder bug

Eau de Stink Bug

Pest control companies train beagles to sniff out bedbugs.  They have a distinct odor.  Think back to your wayward youth.  If you ever smashed a boxelder bug, you’ll remember the stink.  I’ve been told bedbugs have a more refined bouquet, but similar.  It takes a nose of distinction and refinement to tell the difference.

These canine prima donnas require man-servants and Garbo-esque privacy in order to perform.  Soaps, chemicals and food must be sequestered.  Pets and their lowly accoutrements (food, litter boxes, doggie chews) must vacate the premises at least an hour before the Star’s arrival.  The only human allowed in the apartment with the Super Sniffer is his agent.  Tenants may wait outside at a discrete distance, behind queue barricades and ropes.

The cats and I camp out in my car—close enough to get a good look, but far enough away to avoid the heavy-handed security squad.  Since we never know when Radar will make his appearance (how can a hound of such stature be held to a timetable?) we have missed him on occasion.  Especially in the winter when we’re forced to keep the car warm by driving around the block.  And since Henry gets car sick, the Winter Radar Watch requires paper towels and baby wipes as well as the litter box.  Small price to pay for a gander at the infamous pup.

Radar Day 3Today provided perfect Radar-Watching weather.  We nabbed front-row seats across from our front door.  As you can see, Henry is in the throes of fan-girling at the thought of catching a glimpse.  This is Henry at his most excited.

Emmett, on the other hand, preferred to guard our luggage.  He understood how dangerous hoards of fans could be—and he already had Radar’s paw print.  *sniff*   Plus, the treats were in one of those bags, and if Henry wasn’t going to puke on this outing, there was a good chance the human would fall for some sad eyes and piteous mewling.  Emmett knows how to work a room.

Radar Day 6

Tension mounted as we waited.  First a leaf flew in from the moon roof.  Then, a snicker doodle, or hershey’s terrier, or one of those yappy fluff balls set to howling at the grass in his yard.  Henry, however, remained vigilant and undeterred.

Radar Day 5


Our nerves at the point of snapping, we spotted the cavalcade of white and red Preferred Pest Control vans turning onto our street.  Our street!  Within moments, the entourage exited their vehicles, fingers pressed to their wireless headsets, in communication with Radar’s helicopter film crew.  And then… there he was!  Super Schnoz!  The Scourge of Cimex lectularius!

Security hustled Radar into the building while we gawped.  Only luck and muscle spasms caused my camera to fire in time.

Radar Day 9

And just like that—it was all over.  How does one recover from a brush with greatness?  From the image of celebrity burned onto one’s retinas?

I guess, the way most fans do—with a sigh and a hearty deposit in the litter box.