Daily Archives: August 9, 2017

I Survived The Hustler Interview

WOW was I nervous!  I am not used to interviewing.  Out came this guy with bad teeth in a Sublime t-shirt, he was the IT Manager.  It’s hard to know how I really did on the technical interview because his answer to everything was “Great!” or “Fantastic!” but I guess it’s good it was something affirmative.  I guess there was one person he interviewed who didn’t make the cut and didn’t get interviewed by the whole team, so the fact that he later brought the whole team in to interview me was a good thing.  No hard-hitting questions there.  It started with “You know what we do here, right?”  They wanted to make sure I was ok with the whole porn factory thingie.  I said I was.  After the group interview I was taken on a tour and in certain areas where people were doing QC, or working on films, it was a total cock-and-balls show.  In-and-out and in-and-out.  THEN he took me into the NOC (Network Operations Center) where they monitor every single video feed, and it was every flavor of porn you could imagine on 100 different screens!!!  I didn’t know where to look.  I guess after awhile you’d just get used to it.  But it was kind of shocking to see in a workplace, I have to say.  Well, they have to generate this stuff somewhere, right?  Now I’ve seen how they do it.  Lots & lots of infrastructure and lots & lots of storage.  Annnnnnd lots of fucking.  Well.  That was Hustler.  I emailed a thank-you for the interview.  Will I hear back?  I predict that I will, with a low-ball offer.  Get it??


Filed under: Bipolar, Bipolar and Work, Bipolar Disorder, Mental Illness, Psychology, Psychology Shmyshmology Tagged: Bipolar, Blogging, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Psychology, Reader

Why It’s Not So Easy To “Get A Haircut And Get A Real Job”

After being hunted down last night by R because my prepaid droid and his contract iphone apparently don’t get along and I got his texts but he didn’t get my replies…He is apparently back to the old ‘real’ job thus today I am trapped at the shop. The first four hours I made Spook suffer with me, then I arranged for my sister to fetch her so at least part of the day wouldn’t be blowing-out-my-brain stressful.

Not a single call. Not a single person coming in. Not even a to-do list from R. Just sit here and watch shit on my computer and try not to lose my mind from boredom.

What’s the worst part is…The Brain Bugs Are Back. Being in the dish, in a place where people could call and come in…My entire body feels like bugs are crawling all over me even though they are obviously not.

This irrational anxiety has plagued me throughout my life, from school to dating to working to marriage to raising my kid. It is crippling. My every instinct wants to lock that door and drive home fast as I can because likely the brain bugs will subside or at least stop putting on heavy metal concert with my central nervous system as the mosh pit.

And this is why I am on disability and have been for some time. Because employers need reliable logical employees who aren’t convinced bugs are crawling all over them simply because their central nervous system and brain chemicals have gone haywire. They don’t want to hear about your months long depressions where you consider one shower a week your major success story, let alone being able to get out of bed, think coherently, and be productive to their schedule and standards. They don’t care that some days your memory fails, aphasia sets in (using the wrong words, kinda like when I said get the frogs off my skin and meant to say bugs), your hands shake so you can’t do anything that requires dexterity with your hands. Forget your stomach churning and all the trips to the bathroom, that’s an inconvenience and makes you more trouble than you could ever be a value as an employee.

Perhaps for some considered to be slackers, it really is as simple as getting a haircut and getting a real job.

For those of us with the mosh pit of battling brain chemicals inside our skulls…

It’s not that simple. It’s not a matter of sucking it up or getting over ourselves. We are not lazy. We take no pride in our inability to be high functioning. We are embarrassed, filled with shame, we have low self esteem to begin with and the world robs of us what tiny bit remains because we can’t meet their standards of the norm.

I used to think it was okay because for thirty years I’ve had all these mental health professionals aligned with me, saying, yes, your disorders are crippling and making you unstable to hold a job, you NEED disability checks.

THEN I got and read shit like this:

How would an immigrant Donald Trump fare under the neo-Nazi-approved “legal” immigration plan he endorsed last week? He’d probably be targeted by his own deportation force.

Columnist Catherine Rampbell writes that the “economy-crippling bill”—which opponents have noted is really an effort to cut down on non-white immigration and make America white—“change[s] how ‘skills’ and ‘merit’ are defined, replacing our current employer-centered system with a points-based one” that awards points for “age, education, and extraordinary achievement.”

Original link to that is HERE

Yeah, Yeah, Morgue, you’re an American, what’s the big deal? The big deal is it sounds like financial eugenics. And first on the chopping block are gonna be those of us who by society’s standards ‘don’t make any contributions’. Paranoid? Yeah, so were those who saw the holocaust coming. How’d that turn out?

Perhaps I am proving my own point here of just how whacked out the brain bugs have made me.

And let’s not forget the real bugs that reside with me and Spook. In the two minutes it took me to put ice in my cup and pour water, a roach had crawled inside. No one should have to live that way simply because their priority is feeding their child and keeping a roof overhead. So…The CAMPAIGN continues. Thanks to those who have donated, and please do if you can and spread the word if you can’t, maybe there’s some kind person out there or maybe even two who don’t know me but get…Living with bugs is not a choice and unfortunately the goverment won’t allow me to sell a kidney to pay the Orkin guy.

And just remember…having a disability is not synonymous with laziness or not putting forth effort. Luck of the draw and we with legit disabilities got screwed. But then I guess the masses can’t understand it. But if it happens to them at some point…they will. And they will find out what a cruel place the world really is.


Hustler Interview Today

I have the Hustler interview today and I’m very nervous!  I got up at a quarter to five to drink coffee and study technical stuff.  My head is swimming with possible interview questions and answers.  I also tried to research the company, and not much came up!  What did come up however were reviews of the company by employees on Glassdoor.com, and man were they bad!  They made it seem like a terrible place to work:  Bad company culture, strict working hours, poor pay, not much time off . . . I have to say, thinking about interviewing at a bad company kind of takes the pressure off!  I can kind of treat this like a practice interview, and not worry so much about whether or not they will want to hire me!  Granted, I don’t have many irons in the fire right now, and if they don’t want to hire me, I might start to feel pretty desperate.  I’m having a hard time keeping up a sustained effort in the job search.  My heart is just not in it!  I am praying for willingness . . .

Well, time’s a wastin’!  Better pick out my clothes and get in the shower.  My hair is kind of long (I wish I’d gotten it cut before today) and I hope it doesn’t look like Donald Trump Hair for the interview.  I’m going to have to take extra time with it and the blow dryer.  Wish me luck!  Off to Hustler . . . more to come!


Filed under: Bipolar, Bipolar and Work, Bipolar Disorder, Mental Illness, Psychology, Psychology Shmyshmology Tagged: Bipolar, Blogging, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Psychology, Reader

So It’s Happened

The Christian college that I applied to work for has come through and assigned me a class of British Lit to teach this fall.  Now I need to wait and see if someone signs up for it :).  I’m going by there today to pick up the book and work out a syllabus for use in the class.  Classes start August 21.  I’m so excited!

We’ll have logistics to work out like how to make sure Rachel is taken care of getting on the bus. Hopefully the bus will come earlier by that time than it did yesterday :).  We didn’t see it until 8:30 am.  (Classes start at 8:00).  But everyone was held up so it wasn’t a great big deal.

Lo and behold –the bus just came through on time.  SO maybe they have all the kinks worked out already. That would be great,  I suppose I will run now and get to the school to get my book.  Brave the traffic and see what it will be like,

 


New Research Discovers That Depression Is An Allergic Reaction To Inflammation

The immune system!!! My pet theory of what causes mental illness!
Well actually allergic reactions are inflammation. And cytokines are produced in inflammation during allergic reactions. Well cytokines are also present in high levels in people suffering from depression. And " adding anti-inflammatory medicines to antidepressants not only improves symptoms, it also increases the proportion of people who respond to treatment,"
“Cytokines skyrocket during depressive episodes and, in those with bipolar disorder, halt in remission. The fact that ‘normal,’ healthy people can become temporarily anxious or depressed after receiving an inflammatory vaccine — like typhoid — lends further credence to the theory. There are even those who think we should re-brand depression altogether as an infectious disease … Carmine Pariante, a Kings College psychiatrist who is quoted in The Guardian report, says that we’re between five and ten years away from a blood test that can measure levels of inflammation in depressed people.  If both Pariante’s estimate and the inflammation-depression theory are correct, we could potentially be just five years from an adequate ‘cure’ for depression.”

Yes, another piece of the puzzle pointing towards the immune system being the culprit in mental illnesses!!!

https://www.feelguide.com/2015/01/06/new-research-discovers-tha-depression-is-an-allergic-reaction-to-inflammation/

New Research Discovers That Depression Is An Allergic Reaction To Inflammation
BY BRENT LAMBERT • JANUARY 6, 2015 • HEALTH, NEUROSCIENCE, SCIENCE • COMMENTS (0) • 3000844

New research is revealing that many cases of depression are caused by an allergic reaction to inflammation.  Tim de Chant of NOVA writes: “Inflammation is our immune system’s natural response to injuries, infections, or foreign compounds. When triggered, the body pumps various cells and proteins to the site through the blood stream, including cytokines, a class of proteins that facilitate intercellular communication.  It also happens that people suffering from depression are loaded with cytokines.”  Inflammation is caused by obesity, high sugar diets, high quantities of trans fats, unhealthy diets in general, and other causes.
By treating the inflammatory symptoms of depression — rather than the neurological ones — researchers and doctors are opening up an exciting new dimension in the fight against what has become a global epidemic.  Caroline Williams of The Guardian writes: “The good news is that the few clinical trials done so far have found that adding anti-inflammatory medicines to antidepressants not only improves symptoms, it also increases the proportion of people who respond to treatment, although more trials will be needed to confirm this. There is also some evidence that omega 3 and curcumin, an extract of the spice turmeric, might have similar effects. Both are available over the counter and might be worth a try, although as an add-on to any prescribed treatment – there’s definitely not enough evidence to use them as a replacement.”
Eleanor Morgan of VICE adds: “Cytokines skyrocket during depressive episodes and, in those with bipolar disorder, halt in remission. The fact that ‘normal,’ healthy people can become temporarily anxious or depressed after receiving an inflammatory vaccine — like typhoid — lends further credence to the theory. There are even those who think we should re-brand depression altogether as an infectious disease … Carmine Pariante, a Kings College psychiatrist who is quoted in The Guardian report, says that we’re between five and ten years away from a blood test that can measure levels of inflammation in depressed people.  If both Pariante’s estimate and the inflammation-depression theory are correct, we could potentially be just five years from an adequate ‘cure’ for depression.”
You can read much more by visiting The GuardianVICE, and NOVA.  And to learn much more about how food and mood are powerfully connected, be sure to read this fascinating article on Kripalu.org. (Image courtesy of the American Heart Association).


As Let’s Queer Things Up! Turns 3, I’ve Got Big, Gay Plans

Back in the summer of 2014, I was packing up my entire life to move across the country to the sunny and oh-so-gay San Francisco Bay Area.

Back then, I was practically a baby queer, feeling both terrified and excited for the next chapter of my life. Having just recently come out of the closet as transgender, and having struggled for many years with anxiety and depression, the idea of just being able to hit the “reset” button on my life was appealing.

So as I left (almost) everything I knew back in Michigan, I did three things: I changed my name. I said goodbye to my therapist (she wouldn’t go to California with me ¯\_(ツ)_/¯). And I started a blog.

Since then, I’ve grappled with trauma, sobriety, mental illness, gender dysphoria, suicidality, transition, and two psychiatric hospitalizations. I’ve also found my own path in recovery and resistance. This blog has been a living diary of the person I’ve become through those experiences — and a place where queer people with similar struggles can see themselves reflected back.

Three years later, it has grown to be a thriving online community and an important resource for queer/trans and disabled people. It’s a space for complicated and honest storytelling, with the hopes that folks like me — queer, non-binary, crazy, tender — can feel connected to someone like them, no matter what part of the world they’re in.

As I’ve talked about before, being a super anxious, queer teenager meant that my first experiences of real community came in the form of blogs and online forums. The resources and support that I found in these spaces became my lifeline, carrying me through as I held on for dear life.

But I’m not a kid anymore. I’m a crazy, queer adult that survived. And that’s what I think makes this blog so special — stories of resilience from people like me are seldom given a platform, especially one that doesn’t attempt to pigeonhole them or diminish their voice. It’s incredible, too, to watch other folks in the community connect to that voice, and feel empowered to reclaim their own.

Readers, I want to do more of this.

When I created this blog, my only plan was to write. But as it’s grown, I’ve started to wonder how I could commit more time and more energy to do this thing that I love. I didn’t want blogging to be my back-burner hobby. I wanted to create more resources for folks in my community and share my experiences in a meaningful way.

At first, I couldn’t wrap my brain around the idea that I was allowed to ask for compensation for my labor. So many marginalized folks throw ourselves into content creation because we love the hell out of this work, and then burn out quickly because we didn’t think to ask for support.

But then… capitalism/life.

I squirmed at the idea of monetizing any aspect of my blog, thinking it would be selfish of me, or feeling weirdly like I didn’t deserve that.

And then I almost lost my apartment multiple times. I accumulated medical debt like it was going out of style after I was hospitalized twice from severe depressive episodes. I hung on by a thread, bouncing from contract job to contract job, trying to keep my head above water.

And I realized that if I kept undervaluing my work, I was going to undervalue myself into a complete financial crisis.

Meanwhile, a lot of people said that blogs were now obsolete money pits. That’s not something I was willing to accept, though. When I was first struggling with mental illness, as well as when I came out as queer and trans, other bloggers helped me carve out a safe space for myself.

I saw myself in their experiences. How could that ever be obsolete?

I want to believe that I can be a blogger AND not have to emotionally drain myself with unpaid labor to do it. That’s why, looking ahead for LQTU, I want to start thinking of creative ways to make this platform really work for everyone.

Let’s make something that’s good for both of us.

Here’s what isn’t changing at LQTU: My core values. Meaning, I’m still a crazy queer feminist that’s a total nerd for nuanced, complex conversations around queerness and mental health. While this is my personal blog for my feelings and thoughts, I still remain committed to creating a community that challenges all of us (yes, including me).

But resource-creating and curating takes labor. Labor, I’ve realized, that really needs to be supported. So as of today, I’ve finalized my new Patreon campaign (with new goals, new rewards), where you can regularly support this blog and get cool incentives for doing so.

Here are the rewards (aka, the fun stuff):

  • $1 per month: Access to secret, Patrons-only blog entries. You might be thinking, “Why even charge a dollar? It’s just a dollar.” Yes, it’s only a dollar — but if lots of people buy in, it makes a huge difference.
  • $3 per month: A follow on Twitter! If you want to be Twitter friends AND support my work, this is the option for you.
  • $5 per month: Access to my Patrons-only vlogs/videos. Every month, I’ll post a new video where I talk about the topics that you’re interested in. I’ve been told I’m fun to watch on camera. (…NO, not like that.)
  • $8 per month: Q&A Club, which means you get to choose the topics that I talk about in those videos. No matter how outlandish they are.
  • $15 per month: A letter! From me! I’ll write you a letter on adorable stationery.

I love these rewards because it offers me a new way to connect with the community here AND get some support to keep on creating.

There’s also some bigger prizes, if you’re into it.

I wanted to create some incentives that help support other folks in the work that they’re doing as well. So I’ve included some new reward tiers that allow me to fund this platform while also boosting yours.

Check out these cool collaborative things we can do:

  • I’ll workshop your writing: Imagine that, every month, you send along an article or blog you’re writing. In return, I send you thorough and awesome feedback (and you know it’ll be good, I’m an experienced editor). For $20 dollars per month, for as many months as you decide, I’ll workshop a piece of your writing each month.
  • I’ll plug your project, product, or page: Every week, I publish a column called Crazy Talk, a mental health advice column. And I figure, why not support your work with a mention every week? If you’ve got a rad thing I might like, $25 dollars per month gets you a dedicated space to plug your work, and gives you access to our audience of over 26,000 readers.
  • I’ll mentor you: If you’re trying to break into feminist media and/or publishing, why not let me mentor you? Every month, we’ll hop on Skype and talk personal brand, pitching, and goals. $65 dollars per month, for as long as you decide.
  • You can sponsor a post: I’m open to sponsorship, either blog posts here or posts on social media. Contact me if we might be able to work together!

These rewards are all outlined on Patreon. Check it out!

So what happens now?

More content, for one. I’m shifting into high gear, eventually working up to publishing three blogs per week, including my new column, Crazy Talk.

And with enough Patrons, we’ll be launching a YouTube channel together and, hopefully (!!) I’ll host a monthly livestream/show where we discuss queer mental health together.

That’s the dream, anyway.

I’m passionate about the tender power of an honest, queer blog. And if I can get some additional support, I’ll be in a better position to fund all the projects I’m interested in doing.

But it takes a whole team to make it happen.

That’s why this cute, nifty link will now be at the bottom of every article:

PLEASE CONSIDER DONATING AS LITTLE AS $1 PER MONTH TO MY PATREON CAMPAIGN TO HELP FUND MORE FREE RESOURCES LIKE THESE, AND ACCESS EXCLUSIVE CONTENT WHEN YOU DO!

My awesome partner, Ray, will now be helping me manage the increase in content, new projects, and social media management that makes this blog run smoothly. My cat, Pancake, will be providing additional emotional support.

And with your donations, I’m bringing on a curator for our Facebook community to diversify the content on our feed, and hopefully a moderator to keep the space free of trolls.

It’s important to me to be a good neighbor, too.

This is why I’m in the process of creating partnerships with different pages, activists, blogs, and platforms to boost the signal on work that I think is important, regardless of their follower count or what they’re able to offer “in return.” This is why you might have noticed over on Facebook some of the same pages and names popping up.

If this sounds like something you’re interested in, be sure to reach out and let me know!

I’m also committed to donating a portion of my Patreon funds to other content creators in the community, as I’ve done from the very beginning. For every $100 dollars earned from this campaign, at least 10% is reinvested into platforms led by queer & trans people of color.

If my work has been valuable to you, please consider supporting me!

My ultimate goal is to be able to make this work more sustainable for me, while also building more community and connection in the process. I think Patreon is opening the door for a more thoughtful way to crowdfund, one that can support me while also offering something to you in return.

This blog will continue to have great content that anyone can access. The difference is that it’ll be backed by some rad folks in the community, backing me as I create those resources.

And I’m excited to see what’s next! Whether you’ve got a dollar a month or just a comment to cheer me on, please know that having you in my corner means a lot. Thanks for sticking with me.

signature


Grossed Out By Roaches? Ours don’t even pay rent!

YEP. I am doing the FUNDRAISER THING because our landlord won’t pay for an exterminator and my limited budget has maxed out on OTC bug killer. So before you judge me as as being skanky or dirty or whatever…

Visit my campaign, read my story, and KNOW I AM ONLY ASKING FOR HELP BECAUSE MY 8 YEAR OLD DESERVES NOT TO LIVE IN A ROACH MOTEL.

That link again is

Single mom, on disability because of brain damage, minimal child support slumlord neighobor and we..simply need help, $5, a repost, share, spread the word on social media…we are an 1/8th of the way donation wise to being able to get a pro bug slaying company to kill off these unwanted pests.

On the bipolar/anxiety front…I did dishes, swept, srubbed, cleaned the bathroom, scrubbed freezer and fridge (amazing how stone cold fury motivates, my kid has a knack for startind drama amongst her trailer park friends and I have the audio files of her kicking, screaming, name calling, and punching walls to prove how awful she is when told the word “no” and all the older girl did was come tell me Spook had lied to me where she was going to be and was in an area where she could get hurt, but in Spookland, that;s being a traitor, thus I guess I have myself a Trumpling.)

Very atressful day. Then my new phone was working ‘right’ while R hunted me down cos he’s getting his real job back and wants me at the shop tomorrow so I got bitched out by him even though I WAS replying to his texts but turns out…smart phone requires you dial 1 plus area code plus number, which I didn’t know and pegacorn knows how much of my prepaid time was wasted on that crap…

I agreed to appear tomorrow, though not with a huge chip on my shoulder. I have to take the spawn with me and it’s…more stress than I need but whoaa, he gave me a car stereo and installed it thus I apparently owe him shop tending AND a kidney…

Rubber Ramada ain’t looking so bad as it would keep these toxic beings away from me….

I am toughing it out cos I have witnesed the loyalty of my handful of friends who even if they can’t donate, share the link to my campaign. I don’t want to lose you guys, love you all to smithereens.

Soooooooooooooooooooo…IF you can spare five or ten in my effort to evict and eradicate the roaches so no one calls me a bad mom for being broke….Please please please. If you can just repost, share, or pass it on on social media….Please. If not for me, but for my kid because I damn well know 99.8% of people cringe if visiting and they see a single bug. WE didn’t choose this but if I can’t spring $500 for the Orkin man, I sure as hell can’t afford first month and deposit and moving fees and utility trasnfer fees to get a better address/home.

And now…melatonin/Xanax combo is telling me it’s beddy bye as I have to be up at the crack of ass to go to the shop and repay his highness for the car stereo and his labor installing it.

Some people make us with mental issues think Rubber Ramadas seem pretty damned appealing.

YEP.


Reborn

I rise and fall
On the anticipation of fear
There can be no perfect moment
Darkness into light
Sentient beings rise
Clamoring for answers
Faith on the hill
Fortune found in a cookie
Secrets of the past
Unlocked w a gold key
Moral compass shattered
Dangling from a wire of
Compromise and lost virtue
I am not myself
Staring back in horror
The mirror does not lie
Stripped
Scarred
And naked
Red blood spills on
White porcelain
Mental anguish
Gives way to the physical
I am reborn in this pain

 


The Butterflies Are Back!

My site will be in a state of construction, but will be “open during renovations”! Please feel free to leave any comments, critiques, or suggestions! Thanks, Lydia!Filed under: Uncategorized

Goodbye Rhinestone Cowboy, RIP

I just saw the news the Glen Campbell has passed away at the age of 81. When his first top ten single came out, “Witchita Lineman”, I was 9 years old. While many of my friends were into the Beatles, the Stones, and other rock music, I preferred to listen to the likes of Neil Diamond, …