Daily Archives: April 6, 2016

Scrapbooking Subscriptions

In watching way too many YouTube videos about Smash Books, I stumbled upon videos about Pipsticks, a sticker subscription service.  I couldn’t help myself…getting mail is so much fun!  Then I wondered about other subscriptions and found Messy Box, which comes with scrapbooking papers and cards and stickers and other tidbits.  My first one arrived […]

Special K

There has been a significant development in the treatment of resistant depression. Things have basically come to a stand-still in the treatment of people with deep depression that is resistant to drugs. As of right now, there are three options: drugs, ECT or other intra-cranial electrical stimulation, or cognitive behavioral therapy (or other forms of […]

Do I speak gently or harshly?

Daily prompt for April 6th - Head to your favorite blog.  Scroll down to the third post in the list.  Take the third sentence in the post, and work it into a new post of your own.

One of my new favorite blogs is dad;diagnosed and this post On Advocacy happened to be the third post down.  The third sentence is "Do I speak gently or harshly?"

I have to admit I cheated a bit and went to another blog first, but the sentence was about kidney pain.  This second one I visited... what luck!
It's a quote from the Patimokkha specifically the samma vaca which is about "right speech" in Buddhism.   I don't claim to know a lot about Buddhism.  I did take a course in eastern philosophy but that was a long time ago.  But what an amazingly appropriate excerpt to quote relating to advocacy, the purpose of blogging, and reacting to comments.  If you are interested in any of those things I encourage you to read the post!

However, the prompt is to work it into a new post of my own.  I've already written a "meta" post about blogging and undoubtedly I will write more.  I should reflect on that sentence only.  So here goes...

As a parent I always regret those times I speak harshly.  I almost always wish I had spoke more gently.  It never seems called for after the moment passes.  Perhaps that's because as a depressive perfectionist I am constantly reviewing things I could have done better and beating myself up about it.  In other words, I ruminate as a habit and probably blow things out of proportion as to how bad they really were.  My reflections cannot be trusted.  They are most likely out of touch with reality.

Despite all that, I am confident that I have gone overboard at times.  And haven't all parents?  My mom told me she would sometimes pray at night for God to make us forget that day, that she had been too rough with us.  I don't remember her that way so maybe God answered her prayers!

It's easy to think that one should speak gently, but obviously takes a great deal of mindfulness to maintain that.  It doesn't help when Phillip lashes out by swiping my glasses, slapping, or even biting.  It can be extremely difficult to speak gently then.  But dramatic reactions and harsh tones only end up encouraging him more.  It has become an exercise in mindfulness to be aware that at any time he is capable of exploding at you, and to be prepared for how I will react.  We talked to his therapist a few weeks ago and one of the things she simplified for us was that he is probably doing it because he wants something or wants to get out of something.  Our goal must be to not let him get out of something if he behaves that way.  We must pause and then continue what we were doing.  It is hard!

Image credit: Dharma wheel

Do I speak gently or harshly?

Daily prompt for April 6th - Head to your favorite blog.  Scroll down to the third post in the list.  Take the third sentence in the post, and work it into a new post of your own.

One of my new favorite blogs is dad;diagnosed and this post On Advocacy happened to be the third post down.  The third sentence is "Do I speak gently or harshly?"

I have to admit I cheated a bit and went to another blog first, but the sentence was about kidney pain.  This second one I visited... what luck!  It's a quote from the Patimokkha specifically the samma vaca which is about "right speech" in Buddhism.   I don't claim to know a lot about Buddhism.  I did take a course in eastern philosophy but that was a long time ago.  But what an amazingly appropriate excerpt to quote relating to advocacy, the purpose of blogging, and reacting to comments.  If you are interested in any of those things I encourage you to read the post!

However, the prompt is to work it into a new post of my own.  I've already written a "meta" post about blogging and undoubtedly I will write more.  I should reflect on that sentence only.  So here goes...

As a parent I always regret those times I speak harshly.  I almost always wish I had spoke more gently.  It never seems called for after the moment passes.  Perhaps that's because as a depressive perfectionist I am constantly reviewing things I could have done better and beating myself up about it.  In other words, I ruminate as a habit and probably blow things out of proportion as to how bad they really were.  My reflections cannot be trusted.  They are most likely out of touch with reality.

Despite all that, I am confident that I have gone overboard at times.  And haven't all parents?  My mom told me she would sometimes pray at night for God to make us forget that day, that she had been too rough with us.  I don't remember her that way so maybe God answered her prayers!

It's easy to think that one should speak gently, but obviously takes a great deal of mindfulness to maintain that.  It doesn't help when Curly Jones lashes out by swiping my glasses, slapping, or even biting.  It can be extremely difficult to speak gently then.  But dramatic reactions and harsh tones only end up encouraging him more.  It has become an exercise in mindfulness to be aware that at any time he is capable of exploding at you, and to be prepared for how I will react.  We talked to his therapist a few weeks ago and one of the things she simplified for us was that he is probably doing it because he wants something or wants to get out of something.  Our goal must be to not let him get out of something if he behaves that way.  We must pause and then continue what we were doing.  It is hard!

Image credit: Dharma wheel

Forgiving Myself

I have been beating myself up for quite some time. The depression grabs hold of me and my house and hygiene go to shit.

I stop caring about anything but caring about everything. That probably doesn’t make any sense. I care what other people think. I judge myself as I think others would judge me and I never give myself a break. I’m constantly hammering shit into my own head about how horrific everything is.

Honestly, yes my house is a little untidy, is it dirty? no. I showered a few days ago which is good.

I just need to forgive myself for the depression controlled events and maybe it will help me get through them just a little bit easier.

Do you ever have anything similar happen? Remember to be easy on yourself. It’s super hard but we have to try right?


Done Playing Mommy And Other Miscellaneous Shit

Dad handkerchiefs

Well my sister has returned and my Playing Mommy has come to an end. Being with the kids, nurturing them, just sitting with them as they went about their free time has been a joy.  What I am truly grateful for is that my mood held up – I didn’t lose my patience with them or get angry as I feared I might.  I was a loving and tolerant Aunt.  Oh how I hope that this is how they remember me when they grow up!  Only time will tell.

Another thing that has brought me great joy lately is the return of my creativity. I have always been a creative person, but I lost the creative spark for about a year and a half to two years.  I attribute this to both depression and Clozaril.  As soon as I went off the Clozaril and switched to Abilify, *poof* the creativity came back.  About fifteen years ago, I embroidered some handkerchiefs for my Dad, which he loved and was very proud of.  For the past few years, I’ve wanted to do it again, but couldn’t quite pull it together.  Finally, last week, I bought some handkerchiefs and embroidery thread and let ‘er rip and it has been so damn fun to do this for Dad’s upcoming 83rd birthday.  Granted, they’re not perfect.  I had to trace the designs from my computer screen onto the handkerchief with a pencil.  But, I still love them and I made them with love (and lots of very anal stitching) and I hope my Dad loves them.  You only see five here, I am working on the final sixth.  I will be so sad when it’s all over!!!  What will I do next???  It has been SO GREAT to have a project!  This just reinforces to me how nurturing the creative process is to my spirit.

If you’ve been reading for a few posts then you know that I had applied for a part-time job with a psychiatrist and wondered if I got the job. I got one call from her which I returned, then never heard back again.  Well, I heard from her over the weekend, apparently she never got my phone message.  Strange!  She does want to work with me (Yay!) but not for a couple of weeks (Boo!).  We’ll see how it all shakes out.  She is not striking me as the most dependable person but hopefully I am wrong about that.

Well, that’s about all the new from the Bipolar On Fire Ranch in Boulder, Colorado. Yee Haw!!  What’s going on in your neck of the woods?

 


Filed under: Bipolar, Bipolar Creativity, Psychology Shmyshmology Tagged: Bipolar, Blogging, Hope, Mental Illness, Psychology, Reader

Done Playing Mommy And Other Miscellaneous Shit

Dad handkerchiefs

Well my sister has returned and my Playing Mommy has come to an end. Being with the kids, nurturing them, just sitting with them as they went about their free time has been a joy.  What I am truly grateful for is that my mood held up – I didn’t lose my patience with them or get angry as I feared I might.  I was a loving and tolerant Aunt.  Oh how I hope that this is how they remember me when they grow up!  Only time will tell.

Another thing that has brought me great joy lately is the return of my creativity. I have always been a creative person, but I lost the creative spark for about a year and a half to two years.  I attribute this to both depression and Clozaril.  As soon as I went off the Clozaril and switched to Abilify, *poof* the creativity came back.  About fifteen years ago, I embroidered some handkerchiefs for my Dad, which he loved and was very proud of.  For the past few years, I’ve wanted to do it again, but couldn’t quite pull it together.  Finally, last week, I bought some handkerchiefs and embroidery thread and let ‘er rip and it has been so damn fun to do this for Dad’s upcoming 83rd birthday.  Granted, they’re not perfect.  I had to trace the designs from my computer screen onto the handkerchief with a pencil.  But, I still love them and I made them with love (and lots of very anal stitching) and I hope my Dad loves them.  You only see five here, I am working on the final sixth.  I will be so sad when it’s all over!!!  What will I do next???  It has been SO GREAT to have a project!  This just reinforces to me how nurturing the creative process is to my spirit.

If you’ve been reading for a few posts then you know that I had applied for a part-time job with a psychiatrist and wondered if I got the job. I got one call from her which I returned, then never heard back again.  Well, I heard from her over the weekend, apparently she never got my phone message.  Strange!  She does want to work with me (Yay!) but not for a couple of weeks (Boo!).  We’ll see how it all shakes out.  She is not striking me as the most dependable person but hopefully I am wrong about that.

Well, that’s about all the new from the Bipolar On Fire Ranch in Boulder, Colorado. Yee Haw!!  What’s going on in your neck of the woods?

 


Filed under: Bipolar, Bipolar Creativity, Psychology Shmyshmology Tagged: Bipolar, Blogging, Hope, Mental Illness, Psychology, Reader

Done Playing Mommy And Other Miscellaneous Shit

Dad handkerchiefs

Well my sister has returned and my Playing Mommy has come to an end. Being with the kids, nurturing them, just sitting with them as they went about their free time has been a joy.  What I am truly grateful for is that my mood held up – I didn’t lose my patience with them or get angry as I feared I might.  I was a loving and tolerant Aunt.  Oh how I hope that this is how they remember me when they grow up!  Only time will tell.

Another thing that has brought me great joy lately is the return of my creativity. I have always been a creative person, but I lost the creative spark for about a year and a half to two years.  I attribute this to both depression and Clozaril.  As soon as I went off the Clozaril and switched to Abilify, *poof* the creativity came back.  About fifteen years ago, I embroidered some handkerchiefs for my Dad, which he loved and was very proud of.  For the past few years, I’ve wanted to do it again, but couldn’t quite pull it together.  Finally, last week, I bought some handkerchiefs and embroidery thread and let ‘er rip and it has been so damn fun to do this for Dad’s upcoming 83rd birthday.  Granted, they’re not perfect.  I had to trace the designs from my computer screen onto the handkerchief with a pencil.  But, I still love them and I made them with love (and lots of very anal stitching) and I hope my Dad loves them.  You only see five here, I am working on the final sixth.  I will be so sad when it’s all over!!!  What will I do next???  It has been SO GREAT to have a project!  This just reinforces to me how nurturing the creative process is to my spirit.

If you’ve been reading for a few posts then you know that I had applied for a part-time job with a psychiatrist and wondered if I got the job. I got one call from her which I returned, then never heard back again.  Well, I heard from her over the weekend, apparently she never got my phone message.  Strange!  She does want to work with me (Yay!) but not for a couple of weeks (Boo!).  We’ll see how it all shakes out.  She is not striking me as the most dependable person but hopefully I am wrong about that.

Well, that’s about all the new from the Bipolar On Fire Ranch in Boulder, Colorado. Yee Haw!!  What’s going on in your neck of the woods?

 


Filed under: Bipolar, Bipolar Creativity, Psychology Shmyshmology Tagged: Bipolar, Blogging, Hope, Mental Illness, Psychology, Reader

Coming Out of the Bipolar Closet

The Gay Closet Twice in my life I had to come out of the closet. The first time I came out as a gay man. That was fifteen years ago. About five years later I came out as having bipolar disorder. Coming out as a gay man was difficult. I first came out with close […]

The post Coming Out of the Bipolar Closet appeared first on Insights From A Bipolar Bear.

Westward Ho! Day 10

IMG_0503This was my day.  I could do whatever I wanted.  So, of course I woke up at 3:00.

My host, Mary, had suggested I get to Muir Woods early before the crowds (on a Tuesday morning in April?), but I took my time and lounged.  Still I got there a few minutes before the park opened, and the ranger let me in free of charge.  Score!

I don’t know if it was the super-oxygenated air, or the urpy switchback road down to the forest floor, or the incredibly ancient energy, or just kickback from my “special cookie,” but had a little difficulty navigating.  I finally took off my tri-focals, which helped tons.  Watching an uneven path through reading-strength lenses would make anyone trip over the wildlife.IMG_0490

It was cool and dark.  Shafts of morning sun sliced through the canopy, but few reached the forest floor.  A shallow stream burbled along one side of the path.  Birds layered their voices unseen high above.

IMG_0499Whenever a tree was close to the trail, I reached out for it.  Redwood bark is dry and rough–papery.  It reinforced how old they were, these sentinels with their fragile skin.

IMG_0485I stopped at the same bench on the way out and back to sit with a Guardian at my back and meditate.  The cool, scented air. The quiet footsteps of others on the boardwalk trail. The massive presence behind me.  I was there completely.  Grounded.  Alive.

I hiked for about three hours.  After sitting for a week, it felt glorious to move (even if I was a little dipsey-doodle).  I felt the muscles of my legs and back sigh.

Soon enough, more hikers and lookie-loos wandered in.  I heard German and Japanese, Swedish (maybe, Norwegian), Spanish and Russian.  I smiled as one young dad admonished his little boys to “keep your eyes open now.”  What good advice in this place.IMG_0487

I ate lunch in the café; all organic and locally grown delights, shopped in the gift shop, then made my way back to Mill Valley without John’s help.  I found a teeny, tiny Whole Foods, bought fruit and a salad, then camped out on my little deck to play with my journal and talk to the crow fussing in the trees.

A perfect day.