Daily Archives: October 12, 2016

Welcome Home

I took my sleeping pill, Trazadone, for the first time in months yesterday. The decision came before Jocelyn had her several meltdowns I mentioned in the last blog. I was actually planning on taking one on the night of her first meltdown. It was one of the first things I told my wife when I […]

Reblog – Dear Readers & New Followers

Originally posted on IreneDesign2011:
Sunrise in a cloudy morning in October in Spain Dear Readers & New Followers For my readers, I will ask you a favor; I have experienced to get into WP’s spam jail in several cases in…

Cowed

So now I am signed up to chaperone a school trip to Atlanta next year.  I hate this.  Bob talked me into it by talking about how his mother wanted to go because she had done this same trip with the other two girls.  But she didn’t want to interfere if I was going to go.  And she can’t handle the walking they’re going to be doing–her knee is too weak.  So now I have to go.   He asked me later if I felt bullied into going and I said pressured was a better word.  So at least he’s aware of what he’s done. He’d BETTER not complain when I go to the full residency this spring for school.

Went to lunch with Mary Jane and she came down my way this time.  We ate at Friends and she loved it.  Afterwards we went to a couple of the shops downtown–a used bookstore and a consignment shop.  We jut had a good time talking about her trips and about my  writing.  We always have a good time when we get together.

I feel good today.  We don’t have to do so much running around–the middle one is skipping her allergy shot since she has a sinus infection so that will make this afternoon easier.  I have laundry to do later but that will be fine as well.  My response to the weeks reading is going over  well, so I feel good about what I was able to accomplish with that.


Mean and Scary

mousy-ladiesSince my last post, words of love and encouragement, texts, phone calls, offers, cards and funny videos poured over and through me.

Part of it is Facebook. This was the first “I’m thinking about suicide” post that I put on Facebook, so some of this kindness comes from people I’ve not seen in decades—junior high school friends, relatives, etc.  They don’t know that, while serious, this is a side of the illness that comes around every few years.

Part of it is the word.  Suicide.  It brings out the panic in people.  It ignites folks like other incendiary words like God, Abortion, Trump.  And fire requires action.

Part of it is that kind people need to do something to help.  And they’re used to sicknesses that get better.  A little chicken soup, a little gift, and the icky stuff goes away.  They don’t understand that I’m always sick—more or less—no matter how sane I sound or look.  It’s a matter of degree.  A little chicken soup-kindness everyday would be lovely.

It’s been difficult—teaching about mental illness, resetting my boundaries, and reaffirming what I really need—at a time when I want to punch most people in the face.  This is not how one thanks everyone for kindness and thoughtfulness.

I isolate when I’m “unwell,” but this is something more.  I can’t seem to navigate the niceties of social interaction.  I can’t pretend to listen to other folks’ three-ring shit shows (and I normally do a grand job at that).  I can’t tolerate the nattering of voices or the pressure (albeit internal) of protecting others from my illness. I’m scary at present.  And mean.

The last thing I want to do is hurt kindhearted folk.  It’s one of my nightmares—shoving away everyone who loves me with this illness.  It’s such a huge disconnect—hanging on every kind word and pushing away the people who speak them.

All I can say is Thank You and I’m Sorry.  Don’t stop asking questions—not about what you can do for me, but about the illness.  I am a font of knowledge on mental illness and if you need to understand, I’m your gal.  That’s one interaction that won’t get you punched in the face.


Pill-Less

Last night was brutal on the sleep front. I tried for three hours to get to sleep, determined NOT to take a melatonin or my nightly (prescribed) 1 mg Xanax to aide me in sleeping. By 1:30 a.m…I broke. My spinning brain was killing me. I took .025mg Xanax and waited for that to kick in. Last I looked at the clock it was 3 a.m. and I was dreading the early morning alarm.

Shockingly, I actually got out of bed before 7:30 and had time for a smoke  before delivering the spawn to school. That is unusual as of late. Yes, it’s been so bad I can’t even bother feeding my habit before 8 a.m. And one would reason, well, you’re not getting enough sleep so of course, it’s hard. But then I get little sleep and am more functional. What the actual fuck. Is it the melatonin/xanax combo making it hard in the mornings? Or am I some freak who actually performs better on less sleep? I am an enigma even to myself.

So far this morning I’ve accomplished nothing but watching Aftermath. I am okay with this because yesterday I did stuff and while not stuff I should be doing…Whatevs. I am on this whole end of the world kick as of late so Aftermath is kind of rocking it for me. Because I see the writing on the wall with this current election. Change is coming either way and it’s not gonna be good either way.

Somehow, the end of things as we know it does not seem so awful. I would miss my creature comforts, like high speed internet and showering, but…Really, would it be so bad to be able to loot a big store for supplies without fear of arrest? Ya know, as long as you are armed and after watching American Ultra…apparently even a spoon can take out a man. I got spoons.

I can assure you, this is not mere gallows humor or escapism. I actually look forward to a change. Not the Gray State kind of change (which is more likely than zombies) but…Something’s gotta give in this country. Either we get a wealthy hypocrite criminal as our leader or a misogynistist elitist who knows fuck all about the average Joe.

Not seeing an upside to this other than getting Obama out and maybe someone will do away with the patriot act and Obamacare. (Couples are having to divorce just to qualify for affordable insurance, how is that family values, you sanctimonious jackasses?)

Oops, there goes a few followers for I mentioned political views. Maybe to lose a few more I will talk religion.

Another day. I think by posting this I will likely end up on a government watch list as a possible enemy of the state. Because ya know, wanting change, even in the form of brain eating zombies, is totally treason.

I guess all in all…this post is a waste of your time to read so sorry.

Then again..I’m not sorry. I put a plug in for the series Aftermath, the movie American Ultra, touched on the aggravating sleep disturbance common to bipolar disorder, and disavowed any allegiance to either political party.

Morgue, out.


Beer Goggles, Toolboxes, & Time to Change: World Mental Health Day 2016

A few of my favourite things: mental health toolbox

A few of my favourite things: mental health toolbox

I spent part of this year’s World Mental Health Day (WMHD) at the student’s union at Sheffield University. Each WMHD has a theme: this year’s was psychological first aide. Unfortunately, I thought it was the “wellness toolbox” from the wellness recovery action plan (WRAP) which was invented & developed by Mary Ellen Copeland.

Whilst gathering together my Time to Change materials, I also grabbed a few things which represent things which help keep me well, eg, writing, Doctor Who, music, cake, tea, and nature. I also took along some sticky notes & pens, so visitors to the event could list the things that would go in their mental health toolboxes.

The Peanuts sticky notes (see below) were a gift from my mother, who died six years ago. Sometimes thinking about her helps, sometimes it doesn’t. Similarly, sometimes none of my toolbox items help me. Other times, I don’t use them soon enough.

Wellness toolbox, complete with illustrations

Wellness toolbox, complete with illustrations

It wasn’t until well into the event that I remembered that the character of Lucy was the one who used to set up a stand with the sign “The Doctor is in”, and charge five cents to listen to the others – usually, Charlie Brown – tell her their problems.

The “beer goggles” in the blog’s title refers to the stand run by Sheffield Health and Social Care’s drug and alcohol services. They also had a pair of “drug goggles”. Both give the wearer the impression of what it’s like to be under the influence of alcohol, or drugs.

Beer googles: a flattering look, I'm sure you'll agree

Beer googles: a flattering look, I’m sure you’ll agree

Whatever is in your wellness toolbox, I wish you a happy, healthy – if belated – World Mental Health Day.

At the Time to Change Stand.

At the Time to Change Stand

Tagged: beer goggles, cake, Doctor Who, drug goggles, mental health, mental health toolbox, nature, Peanuts, Sheffield, tea, Time to Change, World Mental Health Day, WRAP, writing

Fear Infused Adrenaline

I don’t feel safe. In my body. In my mind. In the world. I’m operating out of fear lately and it sucks. I refused, rather chose, not to attend a huge free music festival in San Francisco because I was convinced it was the perfect bombing or shooting scenario. A hundred thousand unsuspecting people standing around in the iconic Golden Gate Park swaying to bluegrass was a recipe for disaster. I was afraid at a concert over the weekend because people were becoming animated and in turn the band was becoming even more animated. Music lovers were storming my section to enjoy the band and I was planning my escape route. Wondering if hiding under the table was kosher? Just yesterday I was in an upscale bar watching the MLB playoffs with my husband. We are not bandwagon fans and sometimes can’t get along with those that are. Fired up drunk sports fans in close quarters were starting to cause me concern. So much so I couldn’t revel in the win of “our” team. I was consumed with how I should, shouldn’t, could, couldn’t handle this situation. Again opting for an escape route.
My husband tells me I can’t live my life in fear. I can’t not go to events due to fear. Then THEY are winning. Conceptually I get this. But, if anxiety could speak its truth, explain itself eloquently I’m almost positive my husband would take back his stance. He might begin to understand the paralyzing effects it has on my thought process. I can never find the right words to explain the intensity. The restless racing thoughts that leave me speechless. Overwhelmed. More than scared. Don’t get me wrong. He is compassionate. He just doesn’t fully get it. He needs to rationalize my anxiety for his own feelings of safety. If I’m not in chaos, generally there is no chaos.
In the midst of a mild panic attack on my hour drive to my first work meeting I tried all kinds of coping tricks. Deep breaths to the count of four. Focusing on my senses..finding 5 things I see or hear or taste. Through my windshield you would think I could see a plethora of things. And I did. But, could not grab that tree or cloud or car from the landscape. It was all a blur. Not enough focus. Inability to find the present. My thoughts turned to a new suicide plan. Rather intrusively. Rather aggressively. Detail by detail. My final final escape route laid out before me promising relief.
I kept my foot on the pedal. Debating the plan. Pros and cons. My fighting Irish mind unconsciously or subconsciously..whatever..landed me at my appointment. I turned off the car. Took three of the longest breaths I could muster. Fixed my hair. Wiped my eyes. Somehow remembered to say a silent prayer. Fear infused adrenaline subsided for a few hours. Plans on hold.
I waded through the mud and the mire. I made it through the day. I sincerely hope you did too in any fashion that carried you through!


Almost Time

It’s almost time for me to start my new meds, I think I start tomorrow. I’m so nervous.

Again I didn’t feel like writing my blog but hubby mentioned it so that kind of put me here.

I accomplished nothing today but being stoned. At least I’m alive.

 

 


Ultra

So after a couple of downish days and high anxiety (kid was home for four days along with her crew)…Today was amazing. No lottery winnings, no magical weight loss or cure for what ails me…But my brain behaved, anxiety was manageable with only 1 mg Xanax. I ran a couple of long needed errands, FINALLY decorated the outside of the house for Halloween, and folded five baskets of laundry.

I didn’t even truly get agitated until I went to pick her up and traffic pissed me off, then her bickering with her friends got on my last nerve. Followed by R texting me senseless about a needed TV piece that I threw out because 99.9% of the time, he removes that piece and tells me to  get rid of the board instead of bringing it back to the shop.  What do I get for listening? A week of incessant “it HAS to be out there!” Um, no. I talked to the manufacturer personally as well as their licensed parts sales site and it is NOT available  because it and its replacement part number are disc0ntinued. Nada on any used sites, either. Still, he’s pissed at me and nagging for the pegacorn.

He fucked up as much as I did by leaving that part on.

But it falls on me. Always the fuck up.

Whatever. I had a good mental health day, nothing went awry too much…I even watched a kick ass movie called American Ultra and I have the damnest time focusing on movies so it had to be awesome.

Spawn is bedded. All is quietish. Aside from the early morning lethargy, I mean. God, I am dragging ass before ten a.m. I have to set two alarms, one with its own ringtone, one for snooze in 15 min intervals, the other with 5 minute intervals, that way I know when it’s gone off twice in ten minutes and I am annoyed as hell..Time to drag ass out of bed and pretend to be diurnal. Which really isn’t that big an issue during summer, so splain that to me professionals.

I’m gonna take the ultra win and hope I am on a roll.