Daily Archives: July 30, 2013

Another flight to Israel, and a shaggy dog tale or two

Just a quick post to let you know I’m alive and well, sort of, having spent all of last night on a 747 from New York to Tel Aviv with a brace of bawling brats howling at ear-shattering decibel levels while simultaneously kicking the back of my seat.  I did not put them out of my misery.

In order to board said flying torture chamber, I had to proceed down the gangplank with thousands of other mooing widgets, moving at a snail’s pace of course.  I had Noga with me as always (the paperwork alone makes me feel faint thinking about it) and she was all decked out in her bright pink PTSD DOG cape.  Along comes a big shot with a bomb dog, coming up the plank.  He must have been the cork in the bottleneck.  He has a really beautiful sable German Shepherd.  I have worked with working dogs–protection, tracking, competitive obedience, search and rescue, cadaver recovery–for at least twenty years.  I was admiring the relaxed, quiet demeanor of the dog.

Not so the handler.

“Put up your dog!  NOW!  Put it in its case!”  Blah, blah, blah.  I looked at the guy.  I looked at his dog.  His dog was ignoring him, which was a good thing.  Obviously not trained by him, which was also a good thing.  His dog was ignoring my dog.  My dog (the 12 pound one) was ignoring both of them.  She can’t stand bad behavior.

“Look,” says I, our dogs are ignoring each other.  Why don’t we just keep walking, in opposite directions just like we’re doing, and then we’ll be by each other?  Simple, right?”

Mr. Macho spluttered long enough to cause a disturbance in the boarding plank line.  I tossed my 12 pound menace up on my shoulder and walked past him, with him screaming all the while “At your own risk, at your own risk!”  Sheesh.

That’s the second time that’s happened to me with a service dog.  The one before was my beloved Ivan of blessed memory, who, besides being my Psychiatric Service Dog, was my Search and Rescue and Schutzhund  partner (that’s a dog sport that combines obedience, tracking, and protection).  I was heading through Baggage Claim with Ivan when some Mucho Macho (where do they GET these guys?) with a drug dog starts yelling at me out of thin air to get my dog out of there.  I of course reminded him that he was breaking a great big federal law, since the ADA protects disabled people who needs service dogs, and that law trumps almost anything.  He started in yammering that my dog was out of control (what? he was helping me pull the luggage cart) and all kinds of shit, so I took a step back and yelled PLATZ!!!!!  so loud you could have heard it down two football fields.  That’s “lie down” in German.  Both my dog AND HIS hit the ground so hard there was a dog-shaped hole when they got up, but only after I yelled SITZZZZ!!!!!!!!  And they both sat like good doggies.  I took my cue and left while his mouth was still sagging open.


Feeling confident
Why, I’m not sure yet
Things are changing
My life is rearranging
The things that matter appear
The things that don’t disappear
What it will mean has yet to be seen
It’s like a dream
Everything is not what it seems
My life was turned upside down
I wore on my face a frown
Now I’m smiling all day
All I want is to play
My new world will bring me joy
It’s not a ploy
I deserve something new
I’m no longer blue

Luscious Jackson – “Mood Swing”

A good friend of mine says she heard this and thought of me, so she posted this on my Facebook page.  Now I have to choose this song as my personal theme song, or keep “Unwell” by Matchbox 20 as my theme song.  Think, think, think…



“Mood Swing”

you come and get me when i’m all alone
on the corner just skin and bones
fever in and fever out
you’re the swinger who brings me doubt
loverboy where you comin’ from
down there, out back always on the run
cool, cool, deep blues
you’re the shine on my shoes
is it in the damp heat inside of me
or is it in the fire that we collide
i feed you mood swing
but you’re never satisfied
is it in the damp heat inside of me
or is it in the fire that we collide
i feed you mood swing
but you’re never satisifed

mood swing i can’t let you win
you bring me up,
you bring me down
mood swing i can’t give in
to your subtle wiles
and your endless miles

you love me now but you’ll hate me soon
in the light of the dark moon
smiling faces always turn away
you’re the kind that likes to play
your fun and games take me up and down
with the skill of a circus clown
you see through my truth
i give it up ’cause it’s up to you
you stare me down how you scare me
but my eyes are open wide
and i will rise to fight you
my delight won’t be denied


A Helping Hand

I married into, quite possibly, the biggest family of worrywarts I have ever met in my life. I’m often amused by how stressed out my husband or my mother-in-law will get themselves over things I consider trivialities. And, I admit, I catch myself being judging about it sometimes — my brain wants to believe they’re doing it to themselves a-purpose, rather than accepting that it’s part of their mental make-up.


I AM a lot better at accepting that fact now — I believe in loving the whole person, and the whole people of my family here are pretty spiffy folks. And while yes, I am human enough to be vexed by their ‘problems’, I remind myself that I’m not prize pig myself and that they are VERY patient with me. And on the whole, it’s a good set of relationships with a lot of love and support.

There’s one area of support that my mother-in-law has been needing lately, and that’s tending to Lilbit. It’s summer break here in the United Kingdom, and the thought of just the two of them for the six weeks had stressed her out to a point of… well. It stressed her out to a place that wasn’t that happy. So I came up with a viable solution — I could work from her house again. It’s not an issue to me, and I knew that just being in the house would do her brain a lot of good. And I must say that things seem so far, so good thus far today!

It’s also a trial run for something we’ve not run past her yet — we’re back in consideration about trying for another kiddo. We tried last year to no success, so we’d kind of gotten to a meh point on the subject. Then I started thinking about my physical health and how I will be better once my body quits having periods, which made the NEED ONE MORE BABY kick into overdrive. If we can’t catch, we can’t catch and I’ll opt for a hysterectomy, but I hope we do. And part of the supporting my mother-in-law in watching the kiddos so we can work was, of course, me planning to work from here to support her supporting us. So hopefully this will put her brain in a happier place, and not make her fret about the future of the business — we’re trying to push her husband into retiring/slowing down, and we don’t want her to think that us having another child would interfere with us getting work done.

Anyways, I guess the point for me is that it’s edifying to know that giving another person support doesn’t necessarily mean doing anything to rob my spoons. It pleases me that just being physically present can do so much for my mother-in-law’s peace of mind, same as her presence in my life and that of my husband do the same thing. Maybe it doesn’t cost anything ’cause it’s a part of my life now? I know that there are certain things and people whom I grind activity with to a point where socializing with them or doing them goes on the zero-spoon list. Whatever the case, I’m glad I can do it.

I hope everyone is doing well.


The post A Helping Hand appeared first on The Scarlet B.

Racing, Obsessive & Grandiose Thoughts

It’s that time again.  I have my latest guest post up at the International Bipolar Foundation.  It’s very relevant to me, and I’d like for y’all to read it.  Click the icon for the link.


Let me know what you think!

Yours Truly,

Mrs Bipolarity

HerShadowtime 2013-07-30 04:30:11

I love a good documentary, even more so if it’s a topic about genetic mutations, disfigurements, uncommon mental states or a tabu topic. Tonight, after an 11 hour workday and a grocery store trip with the worst possible cart, complete with 2 malformed wheels, I settled in for some PBS. I cannot recall the name of the documentary but it was about people on the Autistic spectrum or with Aspergers. One thing in particular that struck me was that several people interviewed touched on how they didn’t want to be “fixed.” That they liked who they were and that they were tired of people trying to “fix” them. 

I adore that for them. 

I can and do embrace my eccentricities but I would give almost anything if someone or something could “fix” my brain. I accept me, I accept that living with bipolar, OCD and anxiety is a part of my make up, just like I accept having short fingers. It doesn’t define me and I work around it, I do all the things I need to do to be a functional human being but fuck what I wouldn’t give to be rid of some of the weight and difficulty those things can and do bring. I don’t like to admit it but I DO want to be fixed. I’ll take one “normally” functioning brain please. 


*I am by no means saying that Autism and/or Aspergers is the same thing as BPD, OCD or anxiety. 

Crash Landing

I was semi manic for three days. Felt good, energy was up, was a chatty Kathy doll from hell. Not that the upbeat thing did any good to boost my standing with the naysayers labeling me too pessimistic. Because ya know they were having a bad day and throwing wrenches and everything was going wrong for them so they were fully justified in acting like 2 years old and being irritated by me being “up.”

Seems fair.

Today…CRASH LANDING. I started out okay. My mom went on the attack when I dropped Spook off and I didn’t even tear up or particularly feel my simmer. It’s just become such a norm, her exploding and saying shit like, “I can’t get along with you, Niki, but at least I love you, Spooky!” Motherly love is the best.

Once I got to the shop, I tried to talk to R, vent a little, since I listen to him, I thought he would reciprocate. Ha ha ha. Instead he said, “If there’s a kid on this planet who needs discipline, it’s yours.”

Yeah, she does, but the way he screamed at her the other night was uncalled for. Sure she was misbehaving, and he was just trying to do good by scaring her into minding me. But his method, midst his wrench throwing tantrum, left me in this space where I said, “My kid isn’t that bad, you just have a stick up your ass.” Not like it mattered because like every word I say, he tunes me out.

As the morning passed, I just kept slipping in mood. I began to feel utterly inept as a mother, completely horrible, beings my own mom doesn’t like me…The stress is getting to me, and everything has started to spin out of control,kicking in the panic attacks. Traffic is a nightmare. Juggling all these kids has become too much.

And the mood hit rock bottom, tears threatened…And it was just one more spoke in the cyclothymia bicycle. Here we go again. FUCK.

My mood lifted a bit because I had to take Spook for a physical, Then I had an appt with the new counselor and took her with me rather than face more of my mom’s wrath. That whole time my kid was very well behaved, didn’t act defiantly, didn’t act like a banshee. She saves that for certain audiences.

Came home. Usually relieved and semi relaxed. Then the kids descended and the noise ensued and my nerves just began to fray and my mood hit lower than rock bottom. Which just a week ago, I was feeling pretty decent and handling it all like a pro.

I get sooo bloody sick of this cycling thing. It never changes. Things get better, things get worse. The counselor says I need a happy medium. Wish someone would tell that to the stupid bipolar.

I had all these household tasks I wanted to do.

Now my mood is so low, my body aches , my brain hurts, the little paranoid thoughts have seeped in telling me because I am not a good disciplinarian they are going to deem me unfit and take my kid away…Logic has nothing to do with whatever psychosis has manifested post pregnancy and all that. I am at times mad as a hatter. Not in a cool “sniper in a clock tower way”, but in a “that person frowned at me, they’re going to come beat me up” way.

I tried to explain it to my mom, hoping maybe if she could understand that I am truly ill, she’d not take everything so personally, like me not coming over often. Now she thinks I am hearing voices telling me to beat my kid. NO NO NO. If it were anything of that ilk, I’d be the first to step away and put my kid in a safe place.

This isn’t exactly psychotic, though the lack of logic makes me feel psycho. It’s more distorted thought and my brain is just rejecting all logic in spite of proof.

Meanwhile, I have people questioning my parenting skills, my stability, my personality. I tossed out to R today, “No one every says anything positive, they just point out everything that’s wrong, so yeah it’s a mystery why I am so negative.”

In one ear and out the other.

But hey, I was out of smokes and he got me some, so I guess my ego can suck it up so my central nervous system can be fed its nicotine.

I feel trapped.

In my own mind.

Nothing ever really changes for long. There is the ebb and flow of life, and then there is cyclothymia.

I swear the anti depressant is working but I can honestly say the things that used to make me gleefully happy because I just enjoyed them…That lust for life is long gone. I love my kid, but my brain just isn’t making any truly happy chemicals. And it’s one more thing to make me feel like a lost cause.

So since I can’t seem to get myself out of this mood with all the counselor’s suggestions…I think I will assume the fetal position in bed, go to sleep, and hope for a brain reboot.

This low down, it can only go up.