Daily Archives: October 28, 2014

In The Middle

Yes, I am in that lovely stage of bipolar where my mood is neither up nor down. In the middle. I’m here, I’m functioning, I am underwhelmed and overwhelmed.

Shark week cramps have died down enough to muddle through.
I put in time at the shop. Until the school called, oh wait, the school didn’t call me. They called my stepmonster and told her they couldn’t reach me because my home phone was disconnected (I called it, it’s fine, never even rang) and my cell never rang. They never called the shop. Oddly, I get their automated school messages at all three numbers. Needless to say, I went in rather irate. Anyway, they said she has a lice again. This school is pissing m the fuck off.
They misplaced my kid on the bus the first day, they don’t even know her gender, the teacher never contacted me about rescheduling parent teacher night, I have to call her in sick to two different numbers because the school proper has no idea what is going on with central office Kindergarten…The teacher even asked her today when the last time she bathed and washed her hair. Last night, actually. I even Robicombed her hair and combed it out. (I swear what they’re seeing is dandruff and even Bex found nothing when I had her doublecheck because I am apparently incompetent.) But asking when she bathed last…That’s intrusive, insulting, and uncalled for. She’s clean, her hair is clean, her clothes are clean. I can see if I sent her in covered in muck with a greasy mop. That infuriated me.
Sooo..I fired off a terse but fair (I read it to Becca just to make sure I wasn’t being all hormone-y and bitchy) email to the teacher expressing my frustration with it all.
To add insult to injury I called my mom to let her know because, surprise surprise, she saw Spook about ten days ago, hugged her, and she’d just (well, my sister found it ‘cos mom won’t do anything for herself) found three live bugs which means nits. But nooo, it couldn’t have been her reinfesting the kid. Nope, it’s me, my treatment doesn’t work (yet it does for many of us who do it right.) I’m not clean enough, my house isn’t clean enough…The woman is negativity personified and even my 16 year old nephew informed her, to her face, “You’re a real c*nt to Aunt Niki.”
It’s just very frustrating and makes me want to turn into the Hulk and smash skulls in. Of course, that would mean a mood that lasts more than ten minutes.

Went back to the shop for a bit since I owe him for buying me smoke supplies and some gas.
Went to the store, came home. Rinse, lather, repeat. Once home, the neighbor girls came knocking to use the phone. For the first time ever, I said no. They told me two months ago “Mom and Dad said we’re not supposed to play with Spook.” So if my kid isn’t good enough to play with them, they can go get their own damned phone. Talk about rude, don’t speak to my kid for two months like she has ebola, then ask to use my phone while saying “We’re not allowed to come inside.”
WTF? I have had enough with rudeness. Just…ENOUGH.
But the guy who just knocked and wanted to borrow milk (he’s always bumming smokes but he does give me a handful of coins for them) I have no problem helping out. Long as its not abused.
People who abuse others’ kindness need to get hit in the head with a shovel.

Still, in spite of all these stressors…my mood is holding steady in the middle. I can aide. I’d kill for a manic episode. I got a random panic attack from hell earlier, and there was no trigger. I couldn’t breathe, I was doubled over, dizzy, felt like someone was holding a pillow over my face and fight or flight was kicking in. Ass trash.
Finally got more Paxil after being out for three days and having no money. Good thing, because those withdrawal brain zaps were hitting hard and making me look like an epilectic with the random abrupt jolts and spasms. Oddly, Lamictal is used to treat epilepsy and even at 250 mg it didn’t knock down anti depressant withdrawal. Cold turkey from xanax sucked less. And I did that three times due to money issues or incompetent doctors.

So…I am frustrated and on the stressed side but I have been in the same mental space for almost 12 hours. For a cyclothymic, that’s like a holy grail. I rapid cycle so quick it’s no wonder it’s mistaken for borderline personality quirk. Problem is, doctors don’t like to admit they’re wrong or plain inept so now my file has that little mark in it and every doctor in the future will just operate from that assumption. And that’s not assumption, no shrink ever does time in this town for more than two or three years. They flee like the building is on fire once their sentence in purgatory is done. So any doctor I see in the future at my clinic will likely not give me the benefit of the doubt or even form their own diagnosis. It’s in my Permanent Record. And I know I harp on this wayyy too much but I have this thing where I will admit to my flaws as long as they are correct. If they are nt valid, I’m doing the rebel yell primal scream thing. (Ha, worked in Billy Idol and Motley Crue song titles, how awesome am I?) Call me a bitch, fine, I AM a bitch. Call me a slut and I will go ballistic. I have cobwebs growing in certain places I’m such a nun these days. Geesh.

Okay. Disjointed rant needs to end. Gotta purge, though. Lose about ten mental pounds when I spew in this blog. Only to rinse, lather, repeat with more spewage the next day. Such is life.
It is what it is.

Now I am going to go bathe my kid. I may spitshine her as well, since apparently our cleanliness has come into question. THAT offends the fuck out of me. Not one person would ever say that I am a dirty person, or my kid, as far as personal hygiene goes.
Ass trasher worthless buckets of monkey spunk petri dish dwellers.
I want my Unabomber shack.
Provided it has wifi.
Gotta watch my shows and get my Word Poker on, ya know.

In Our Own Voice Interview

This week I’m feeling much better than I was on Friday and over the weekend. Spending so many days in bed or slouched on the couch did a number on my lower back and hip flexors. I was in extreme pain this morning. Walking around while doing errands seems to have loosened them up again. This morning I got my hair cut and went clothes shopping to prepare for my interview tomorrow at NAMI – Orange County for their In Our Own Voice program. Here is how NAMI describes the program:

NAMI In Our Own Voice

Presentations by those who are recovering from mental illness are designed to raise awareness and reduce stigma by providing a dialogue on the issues related to recovery from severe mental illness.

In Our Own Voice: Living with Mental Illness is a recovery education presentation given by trained consumer presenters for other consumers, family members, friends, professionals, and lay audiences.

A brief, yet comprehensive interactive presentation about mental illness–including video, personal testimony, and discussion–enriches the audience’s understanding of how people with these serious disorders cope with the reality of their illnesses while recovering and reclaiming productive lives.

I love public speaking, but have had little opportunity to do so. My whole life, I loved being on stage and the center of attention. Yes, I was a drama geek, and can be theatrical.

Wish me luck. I’m nervous (and excited)!

Filed under: Mental Health, Mental Health Advocacy, NAMI, Public Speaking, Stigma Tagged: In Our Own Voice, IOOV

Get Out and Vote

Mental Health Care gets my VOTE! What do YOUR candidates know about mental illness?

For those who do not receive NAMI‘s Advocacy Update, here is their email dated 10/27/14 verbatim (just copied and pasted) just in time for the US elections, the Affordable Care Act’s HealthCare.gov open enrollment (11/15 – 2/15), and Medicare Part D open enrollment.

NAMI National Alliance on Mental Illness ADVOCACY UPDATEMake Your Vote CountToday’s candidates will become tomorrow’s elected officials, with the power to make important decisions. As voters concerned about mental health care, it is critical that you learn about issues, educate candidates about the importance of mental health, and use your vote to elect representatives that will help improve mental health care in this country.Ask the important questions. Know what your voting rights and options are.

Educate the candidates that mental health is a priority.

Tell your candidates that “Mental Health Care Gets My Vote!”

Health Coverage Open Enrollment Starts Nov. 15  

It’s that time again! Open enrollment for health coverage is Nov. 15 through Feb. 15, 2015. New affordable plans are available, so if you do not have insurance or you need to re-enroll check out HealthCare.gov to see your options.

Things to keep in mind when choosing your health plan. Make sure:

  1. Your mental health provider is in your network.
  2. Your mental health medications are covered by your plan.
  3. That your plan is affordable, which can mean low co-pays, low co-insurance and low deductibles.

Learn more about the cross section of mental health care and the health insurance marketplace.

Bonus Read:Learn about how the Affordable Care Act is impacting the Criminal Justice System.

Medicare Part D 2015 Open Enrollment Has Begun  

Medicare Part D is a crucial program if you or a loved one is a Medicare recipient who takes medication to treat your mental illness. The new 2015 guide for Medicare Prescription Drug Annual Enrollment is now available from Medicare Access for Patients Rx (MAPRx). Compare plan choices and find the plan that best meets your prescription medication needs. All Part D plans are changing in 2015. Use the guide to get answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.

Read the guide.

Find out if you need to make a change.

Use Medicare’s plan finder.

Enrollment for Medicare prescription drug coverage is open until Dec. 7, 2014.

Finding Ways to Help People Who Are Homeless

Reducing long-term homelessness is a priority for NAMI in our new strategic plan for 2015 through 2017. Homelessness among people with mental illness is a tragic outcome of a broken mental health system. Addressing the needs of long-term homeless individuals, many of whom live with serious mental illness and substance use disorders, requires blending mental health services with supportive housing. Two new reports have been released which provide information about emerging best practices for blending resources to address chronic homelessness.

You can help address chronic homelessness in your state by sharing these reports with the agencies responsible for Medicaid and housing in your state and urging them to implement the best practices highlighted in these reports.

Read the reports.

Bright Spot: NAMI Policy Team Takes on Twitter

Two NAMI Policy Team leaders have joined the Twitter-verse and are actively tweeting about #MentalHealth policy! Follow them at @NAMIPolicyWonk and @DarcyGrutt to stay up to date! Below are some tweets from the last week.

You can also follow NAMI on Twitter and Facebook.

Thank you for your advocacy!

Filed under: Human Rights, Mental Health Advocacy Tagged: Get Out the Vote, open enrollment HealthCare.gov, open enrollment Medicare, Vote

Getting To Know Me

Rebecca Lombardo began writing as a child. In third grade, she told everyone that her dream was to be a writer. At the age of 19, she was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, but continued to write poetry into her 20’s, until her illness consumed so much of her time and energy, that she just lost the will to write.

She never gave up her dream to be a writer, but the despair she felt over not being able to find the words anymore was just too much for her to take, so she gave up writing for many, many years. Sporadically, she would begin a journal, blog, or even write a poem for her beloved husband, but it was never the same again.

In the summer of 2013, Rebecca faced one of the biggest struggles of her life. After losing both her mom to lung cancer in 2008, and her brother to an accident (on her birthday) in 2011, she felt as if she was drowning. Her physical health continued to deteriorate, and the migraines that were once just a nuisance became a constant, and would sometimes last 6-7 days at a time, and were cause for countless trips to the emergency room.

Trying to pick up the pieces of her life after her mother’s death, she moved forward with running her own pet sitting business, and attempted an online multi-level marketing business. Yet, she fell apart, and there was no way she was going to come back on her own this time. She attempted to take her own life, and was hospitalized against her will in a horrible, horrible place.

When she came out, in roughly the first week in July, her PTSD, anxiety, depression, and grief were overwhelming, and she decided to begin writing again. When the words began to flow easier and easier, she decided that she would be willing to turn it into a blog so that others could see her struggle and know that it’s a vicious cycle but it can be overcome. She hoped that in addition, it would help her get past all of these horrible experiences. As her writing went on, she would receive more and more feedback from total strangers, sometimes in other countries, that would thank her for telling her story. They were grateful that because of her, they were now able to get help.

Eventually, she reached out to a couple of websites that she was fond of, and was invited to be a contributing writer on each.  When her work was finally becoming validated, she felt as if she may be able to turn her blog into a book, to try and help even more people.

At 41 years of age and happily married for nearly 13 years, Rebecca can finally say that she is on her way to reaching her dream. Not only does she hope to help people that are struggling with depression, she hopes to help them realize that you are never too old to find your voice, and make your dream happen.

Rebecca lives in a suburb in Michigan with her husband, Joseph and 5 cats. 4 of which were rescued. Her father lives a short distance away, and is going to be turning 85 this year. She has 3 brothers and 1 sister as well as several nieces and nephews.

Chug Chug Splutter

I’ve had a somewhat productive couple of days. We’ve made some progress on organizing house things, I’ve done some cleaning and baking, and that’s been satisfying. But then, today feels like I’ve gotten nothing done due to clingy baby, I’m exhausted, and I’ve had a fair amount of irritability lately. I’m hella irritated right now because I direly wanted to try to get caught up on actual work today, and that didn’t happen. Maybe I’ve gone too long without enough alone time and just haven’t noticed. I had both kids at home yesterday since it’s midterm. Lilbit went to holiday club today, but still. People in space, and right now I am feeling so filled to the top that I am half considering going upstairs and slamming the door behind. Maybe I should try taking a bath…

Ah yes, that seems to have helped. You guys know how it is — you suddenly go from okay to not okay like a switch with no real gradient. I’m grateful that we have a bit of space here so that I CAN go off and sort of be alone. It’s not great, ’cause British houses are super-tiny. I fairly recently had a friend in the States tell me I wasn’t permitted to complain about how small my house was because his condo is only 2,000 square feet… which is um… about two and a half times the size of our house, where he lived alone, and we live as four. He shut up after I pointed out the size disparity, but still. This house is about 20% bigger than our previous one, and is divided in ways that one can get a bit of space to themselves. So it was nice to be able to engage in such self-care for a bit… when I remember it’s an option!

One thing that I have noticed lately is that I’m recovering a lot faster from moments of stress. The worst of them still annoying piggyback onto when my husband is feeling wretched, but at least I’m not a total wreck all the time now. I think that gives him hope. Certainly, I feel that our communication is getting better about how we are feeling, and that we’re slowly getting better at helping each other out (which is to say, I’m getting better at helping him out; he’s always been fabulous and then some).

Past that, the chronic fatigue continues to reign supreme. I thought about going for a walk today because the weather looked nice, but the thought alone was too exhausting. Even if I’m used to it because it’s chronic, it still is stressful and upsetting. I mean, I’m still in a good mood on the whole, but as the start of this post shows, it doesn’t take a lot to upset the balance when there’s not a lot holding it to center. But at least for today, we’re on the downhill slope of the day, so all should be well.

And speaking of well, hope all of you guys out there are doing okay.



Astrology vs. Mental Illness: Mercury Retrograde

Do you know about the Mercury Retrograde that just happened? Do you know what I’m even talking about? No, I’m not talking Klingon ( I wish I could though…) Galadarling explains it like this: “If you have no idea what I’m talking about, here we go. The planets are swinging around at all times, and …

The Silent Treatment Plays on Your Fear of Abandonment

Originally posted on Let Me Reach with Kim Saeed:
? gettyimages ? Fear of abandonment.  It can destroy your life if left unchecked; especially so if you are in a relationship with a suspected Narcissist. Narcissists use this fear to keep you in a perpetual cycle of anxiety, causing you to crave their return when they…

Ce-ment Pond

I was thrilled when we went out to visit the foundation today. They had our porch, garage and basement were all poured and the men were making it all smooth and cool.

Mom seems insecure about buying her home now. It makes me wonder if she is going to go through with her. I honestly worry that maybe our wanting her there has pushed her into doing something she isnt ready for.

Hubby is going to talk to her to make sure she doesnt lose too much money if she feels she would rather stay here in the house on the lake.

I just want her to be happy and we live close enough that holidays and visits arent a big deal.

I am happy right now. I cheated a little on my diet today but I got a candy bar that is only available in Canada and I am going to enjoy it! Plus I’ve lost 2.6 pounds. Go me!