Daily Archives: January 21, 2017

Not

Not writing. Not cycling. Nor a sorrowful face full of tears. Nor a  shuddering heart. Nor any shaking shoulders.

In fact, nothing much at all.

What is this vacancy? Whose are these slumbering eyes that guide me? Whose billowing arms far out at sea? Whose laggard legs calling me across this pebble shore?

This not what I signed up for. This was not in the small print. I did not agree to this. I did not give my consent. I did not say what you say I said.

Or did I?

I was born against my will, I breathe against my will. My heart beats and my blood moves against my will. I sleep against my will. I wake up, gasping for air.

I am at war with myself.

There are so many military metaphors. My grandparents, my parents, my uncles, my aunt – they all survived wars. My grandfathers fought in one on opposing sides. And I, who would fail any medical, who has never so much as handled a gun, or a grenade, I am fighting myself.

In my role as a Peer Worker, supporting others to cope with enduring mental health problems I pride myself in being the stretcher bearer in the picture. Helping to carry the burden. holding the hope for others when there is none they can see.

I cite it often as a key part of what keeps me well (enough) to live. I boast of my ‘spare capacity’ to reach out to others to support them in their personal journey of recovery. I support ex-servicemen who carry with them the horrors of active service that we coyly disguise with the acronym PTSD. I put myself on their battlefields of unfamiliar streets, house searches and shouting at children who do not know how to respond.

My ears are leaking blood from all the places I have never been. The Eastern Front, 1914. Kristallnacht, November 9 – 10 1938, Theresienstadt and Baranowicze 1942.

Image result for first world war stretcher party

Is that me on the stretcher or is that me on the bicycle?

Futility

Move him into the sun—

Gently its touch awoke him once,

At home, whispering of fields half-sown.

Always it woke him, even in France,

Until this morning and this snow.

If anything might rouse him now

The kind old sun will know.

 

Think how it wakes the seeds—

Woke once the clays of a cold star.

Are limbs, so dear-achieved, are sides

Full-nerved, still warm, too hard to stir?

Was it for this the clay grew tall?

—O what made fatuous sunbeams toil

To break earth’s sleep at all?

Wilfred Owen (1893 – 1918)


And Mother Nature Laughs…

So, for those 4 or 5 people who can stomach reading my posts consistently…You are aware of my week of hell involving the furnace and no heat situation. 3 days of the landlord dispatching the professional H-VAC guys, a $200 motherboard installed (which we had to wait overnight for) and still…No heat. The landlord basically blames me for the motherboards failing as I have bugs and cats and all sorts of things that aren’t his problem. Whatevs.

Wednesday night I swallowed every ounce of pride I had because I was sick of me and my kid wearing gloves indoors. I asked R for help, knowing I will basically become an indentured servant.

Guess what?

R managed to do in ONE HOUR what those professionals couldn’t do in 4 days. He cleaned out the A coil with toothbrushes (I have extras, no worries I am reusing them, eww) and he repaired a loose seal with some silicon that was preventing the vacuum needed for the furnace to work properly and blow out heat.

The next morning I woke, not covered in blankets, yet so toasty warm…and I SMILED. What a wondermous thing. Gives me hope maybe the central air might even work properly this summer since all the duct work was sealed AGAIN.

Of course, as is our arrangement, he helped me and I was dispatched to The Google to look for parts. BUT WE HAVE HEAT!!!

Now for the kicker…

That bitchbeast Mother Nature has decided, after two weeks of below freezing temps, while we had no heat…That today is sunny and 64 degrees. In January. I opened a window and am wearing short sleeves and no socks. Isn’t that a  bitch? Freeze for two weeks, now it warms up outside and we’re overheating. Ha ha ha Mother Nature, you funny.

AND I actually went out for margaritas and Mexican food with R and Mrs R last night. Yes, me, in public, and NOT dreading it. (No I spent the prior six hours trying to figure how to cancel but I didn’t.) I guess the margaritas hit me harder than expected cos they sshhed me a couple of times, I was apparently getting too animated and loud. Which is hard for me to discern even without alcohol because I have a loud voice and being quiet is a hard, conscious effort. Oops. My bad. Social skills lacking.

It was nice, though. Nice to go out (her treat, for my birthday tomorrow) nice not to feel resentful for having to go out, nice to not freak out in a crowded restaurant.  Nice that I didn’t have to drive thus worry about all that rigamarole. And I was home by 8 p.m. thus giving me a little me time while Spook was at my mom’s for the night.

I slept in til 11 this morning. Binged more of season one Murder One. Waited for my kid to call and say she was ready to come home. And I picked her up and she presented me with a gold foil bag with nail polish, a card, a candle, for my birthday. (I gave her the money cos she really wanted to get me a gift, which is cool cos not one member of my family is giving me anything and I get being broke, it’s fine but still…even a cooked meal would be nice cos my sister’s lasagna rocks the casbah. R asked what I wanted, I told him a replacement keyboard for this laptop as some keys are missing and 6 days later…He’s still giving me the runaround on waiting til he figures out which credit card has the lowest balance…Why did ask if you are so broke? Pfft.

Truth be known, I splurged on an external keyboard for my desktop, it has low profile keys and lights up blue so I can see to type in dim light. Happy birthday to me. And frankly…Having heat means the best gift ever.

My mental state is…upsy downsy, and I  blame the recent blight of gray damp weather. And unfortunately, we are looking at another week of low temps and clouds so the seasonal depression will probably return to kick my ass down the street.

For today…My kid is outside playing with her friends and happy. We have food and the necessities we need. The car still runs.  Did I mentioned we have HEAT?

The one dark side that has become consuming over the last few months is…Driving. It makes me a nervous wreck. People won’t put down their cell phones, they don’t pay attention and just backing out of a lot or going to a drive thru sends me into panic and paranoia. I am terrified. It’s like my brain’s processor is so out of date it can’t keep up with the new speed processor society runs at. I used to love driving. Now I dread it.

But there will always be a dark cloud even when the sun is shining. That’s life.

So this is my one shiny happy post for the year, my quota has been met. We will return to our regularly schedule depressive rantfest at any random time.

 


Why Not 3?

Today at 11:18am I have already had some accomplishments. I have taken the garbage and recycling out and walked both dogs separately to the mailbox! Yep doesn’t sound like much but for someone whose house needs a full cleaning it’s a head start and it’s something I can do. I plan to also do the two loads of laundry I have had sitting in the laundry room since my mom’s visit. (That’s what happens when you own too many clothes).

I decided I would also post on my blog. So here I am! Hi 🙂

My depression must be improving without me knowing it though because the wellbutrin seems to be doing some motivating. The increase of the rexulti seems to be helping too. Though I admit the last two days I napped in the afternoon just to pass time, I was so lonely. I don’t know how to interact with people anymore. I used to play WoW and be in a guild and talk with a lot of people. I need to start doing that again just to be a part of something and to interact with people again.

I’ll figure it out I guess.

I miss my sister in law. She is dating a really nice person right now and I haven’t had a chance to see her very much. Hopefully as they get more serious that will change though and there will be a little wiggle room for me.  We’ll see.

 


Job Transitions

I started working at the local hospital in May 2015 and have recently grown increasingly dissatisfied with my position.  Several of my coworkers did things to make work difficult on the rest of us, I got stuck working every other weekend (I agreed to it, but it got tiring after a while), I unwillingly got […]

Reblog – Let Me Ask You A Question – 1/20/17

Originally posted on Dream Big, Dream Often:
Let me ask you a question: Where do you find yourself mentally at this point in your life?   

The Courage to Share

It was three years ago when I started to blog.  I really enjoyed meeting so many people from all over the world.  What writing about mental illness came down to was the “Courage to Share,” an honest story sometimes filled with pain or struggle.

What I have learned is when I have been willing to share my story with others I receive so much in return that I almost feel overwhelmed by the amount of support.

One thing I hope I have been able to do is to offer hope to people who live with mental illness or their family members.  Someone said to me today, “Mental Illness is just so sad.  I don’t know how you can find fun or joy in what you do.”  I was surprised by the comment.  Sure suffering is plentiful when it comes to mental illness but hope is alive and well.

I truly believe the book I have written “Bipolar Disorder My Biggest Competitor” will be real in that there are struggles-but also be filled with the hope for recovery.  

Most of all I want to encourage others to share their stories in any format.  It is a gift that keeps on giving.  The courage to share is the grace in healing.

Amy