Daily Archives: January 21, 2015

Into my brain…..

It seems that the urge to get my thoughts out has once again hit me. I wonder if that’s because for the first time in 2 months I don’t currently have any physical health issues going on. It’s so hard to stay balanced when you are sick or in pain. I am so grateful that I finally seem to have gotten over the hump and I am more free to use my thoughts for good.

I have found myself thinking that life is easy….I know that’s not true. And there are so many things that hurt my heart. But for the first time probably ever have have faith and the knowledge that every day when I wake up I can, will, and DO have control over my thoughts. I know that sometimes it is difficult to put all the pieces together. I know that there are people that have totally different life situations than what I have. But on a very personal level, I am grateful that life has gotten easier. That I am content, truly content without having a nagging fear that something negative is about to happen. I have faith in the people around me in a way that I haven’t had in years. I’m still trying to figure out exactly what the feeling is, but I know that something is different.

I have talked about the fact that I don’t have a lot of REAL reasons why Bipolar has been a part of my life. My childhood was amazing by almost al accounts, including mine. For the first time in my life all those things my Mom tried to teach me and get me to understand are things that I have the ability to have control over. I am starting to understand more of what closer to “normal” means. I know that people like to say “what is normal realy?” And that is true, but let’s get real there are something that are normal and there are somethings that are not. It doesn’t mean there is something wrong with any given person it just means that they often have to walk through life a little differently. Let’s get real you can’t grow up with abusive drug addicted parents and expect to have “normal” and healthy reactions to the world without a little help. Here’s an example, I can’t even fathom a world where my parents would have beaten me, I assume people don’t do that that are good parents. When someone tells me about abuse I have a hard time understanding it. There are many people however that violence was so much a part of their childhood that violence is a first response or action, not a last resort.

I don’t think that is bad or wrong, i just think that person needs to learn and be shown new ways of coping and dealing with things. For some people that may be a pretty simple task, for others it may take years and lots of time to start to change patterns. For me, the change has been so much easier having meds that help out. I can so clearly see how my thinking was messed up, and how my emotional reactions were disproportionate in certain situations. I was able to be annoyed or irritated without being very emotional or very mad. I can see that now the things that bother me don’t run my life. I can move on and move forward without hanging onto things.

I wonder how many people struggle everyday with this for different reasons. I wonder how many people, like me, are so close to “normal” that they can’t even see how much they struggle. My Mom said the greatest things after my diagnosis. She said she was sorry that I am having to deal with this. But that she was always wanted me to struggle less and be happy more.What a gift for someone to give! Much less to be coming from family. There’s nothing “wrong” with me, but I do struggle. It’s fact and apparently it’s been fact most of my life. There no reason anyone should feel less than because of a mental illness.

While I haven’t been blogging much I have been loud and vocal about my situation. I am no longer scared and I’m not afraid to shout it from the roof tops, although mostly I just share with friends and family. But you know what?? I like to ask questions, I like to know things. And I just wonder how many people would start to feel better if they learned how to share. Of course there are always going to react and behave badly, but so many good people are out there. I work with some people that laugh with me when I have bad days, that know that I am not defined by what I have but who I am. Everybody deserves to have someone in their corner rooting for and helping them. I thought that’s what families were for. That’s what my family does. It mind boggles me that as I get older there are more and more people that seem to have never had someone in their lives that advocate for them. That love them and that only want the best for them. I have tried to be this person, when I can. I can’t do it all the time and sometimes I have to decide to put myself first. But it makes me sad. I am determined to do the best I can to stay healthy so that I can be a voice for the weak.

My last insight is this. I spent a lot of time wondering why me. Especially in the context of my family. Why I am the one that has to deal with this? Isn’t me being loud and different in other ways enough for pities sake? But it hit me one day that I haven’t been punished. Doesn’t God tell us that He can take the most ugly thing and make it beautiful? I don’t know what His plan is for me, but I know this. I have a compassion and empathy that I may never have had had I not had bipolar disorder. And I KNOW that my life led me to this place for Him to show me what I was missing. I almost lost my marriage and everything I love and that brings me joy because of this disease. But God delivered me. He sent me a husband that believes in second and third and fourth chances. That loves me and wants nothing more than to be with and happy with me. What a seriously major thing to have been so close to losing!! God not only saved my marriage, I have no doubt that He saved me because there’s a good chance the spiral I was headed towards would have meant major destruction. God took the thing in my life that has meant the most pain, confusion, and brokenness and turned it into something that I can use to help show and teach people about Him.

I am blessed! I am saved! I am His and no one and nothing can take that away!!

God bless you and have an amazing day!

Uncle Matt Part #3

Welcome everyone! We’ve got a few new followers, so let’s do some housekeeping. If you are new to the blog, this post is the third part of a post on my half-brother. To get the “full effect” of this story, you may want to go back and read “Uncle Matt” and then “Uncle Matt Part #2.

So we left Uncle Matt at his fancy wedding with no guests. Unbeknownst to all of us, he had something going on the side. Her name was Casey and she was a stripper. Which I have nothing against, other than it demonstrates the variety of women in Uncle Matt’s life.

My mother and heavenly stepdad #5 were living in Vegas at the time, so Matt and Casey wound up going up there. She got pregnant. They came back to town and she had the baby. It was a boy. My brother has been what is known as a total absentee father. He has not seen the child, paid any child support, you get the idea. This “baby” is now 18. I do regret my own illness which kept me so busy I was unable to be a decent aunt to the child. In my defense, however, Casey wanted nothing to do with Matt’s side of the family and never even pursued child support. My own kids contacted this child on Facebook and were greeted with obscenities, so we have laid off.

The next woman was Lisa…an absolute kook. I’m sure she was manic. The first time I met her she swept into our house shouting “GIRLFRIEND, HOW ARE YOU?” She and Matt were not a good mix. More fighting, throwing things, police, and jail time.

After Lisa threw Matt out, he decided to move in with my mother. Remember how my mom laid in bed? Well, she was still doing it and she had found a homeless woman to come in and wait on her. So my brother slept on a roll away in their kitchen, and the ladies each had their own bedroom.

My mother was addicted to pain pills. She once bragged about how she saw six doctors in one day. So of course my brother started stealing her pills and selling them. My mom also gave them away to any neighbors who asked. (She was quite popular at the apartment complex.)

Matt got back together with Lisa and moved out from Mom’s. This time things got more serious when Lisa got drunk and fell off a balcony. She wasn’t seriously hurt, but my brother resisted the cops and he went back to jail.

This might sound a bit rude, but I liked it when Matt was in jail. I knew he wasn’t going to get shot by the cops, and I knew no girlfriend would be calling with the hysterical news that he had hit her. I could send him books in jail and care food packages and money so he could get things at the jail store. It just was a lot of pressure off of me.

So he gets ready to get out on parole. One of his stipulations is that he have some address to go to. Okay, I know this was one of the stupidest things I ever did but I let him move into our guest room downstairs. It was empty and he told us he’d pay rent. He seemed reformed and there were no women in the picture.

He had a job and had to attend anger management classes once per week. These were clear across town so we drove him. He did have a job and was making decent money and actually paid rent…for one month. Then he was riding his bike and fell off and broke his collarbone.

Of course, there went everything. He started drinking. I mean seriously. Everything in our house he could get his hands on (and then blamed it on our kids). He would go to the convenience store at night and get a large soda and fill it up with booze. I had no idea where he was getting his money until I figured it out. Mom.

Mom felt guilty about Matt’s childhood and thought she could make it up to him by giving him money. The wonderful stepdad had died by now and left her with a decent trust. Between that and her Social Security she could live a modest, yet nice life. But Matt got a hold of her. He talked her into getting into her trust and taking money out to give him. She bailed him out many times. My husband tried to stop it, but Mom was an adult and there was little we could do.

We finally threw him out when he hid a meth pipe in the house and told us it was our son’s. After he left, we found out he had been telling our 23 year old daughter all about his sexual exploits.

This gets better.

He runs into a girlfriend he knew in elementary school. Trish. Trish was a dental assistant. There was a little twist here. Both Trish and the dentist she worked for were addicted to nitrous oxide. So they’d go snort it (or whatever you do with it). Then they wouldn’t have any for the patients. Matt moved in with Trish.

My mom got sick and had to leave her caretaker and her apartment. She went into a group home. So Matt, Trish, my husband, and I all had to go and clean out Mom’s apartment. Guess what disappeared before we got there? All of mom’s pain meds, her credit cards, and $400 in cash. I seriously didn’t care. I just wanted this all over with.

The final hurrah which brings us to current times is the kidnapping charge. Matt left his flip-flops at a friend’s house. He asked Trish to take him to get them. (Alcohol was of course involved.) When Trish said forget it, Matt got a knife and waved it at her and got her in the car. Once she got free, she called the cops. Matt went to prison.

He’s been out for about three weeks and has been calling us for money. My husband has told him “no way”.

And there you have it, the story (so far) of Matt.

Insight into My Blog

Today Cheri Lucas Rowlands, WordPress editor and author of Writing Through the Fog, wrote Drawing Insight From Your Annual Report. On December 30th, I used information from my report to thank my readers, especially my most active commenters – Dyane Leshin Harwood, Ellen Stockdale Wolfe, and Glenn Archibald.…

Yet Another Trip Around The Sun

Why is it that the years pass so quickly when you’re older? When I was a kid, it seemed like it took forever to get to Christmas or birthdays or anything else I anticipated with enthusiasm; now I turn around twice and the occasion is here.

Such is the case with my 56th birthday, which I celebrated two days ago. I feel like I just turned 50, and now I’m on the shady side of 55, looking straight ahead and seeing 60 in the not-too-distant future.

But those ruminations can wait for another day. Birthdays are for celebrating life, and this year I’ve got a lot to celebrate because I’m HERE. And that’s the best birthday gift of all.

more rants on suicide


Rants with a conscience and the sickening callousness of the me me me generation. If these don’t make you spit bullets, you have no heart. Grrrrr mutter etc.

Originally posted on midnightdemons7:

More Rants on Suicide

Have I mentioned how much I love Twitter? It brings me on the front lines of any suicide articles. I recently have two rants that I will discuss that I have read today concerning suicide and suicide prevention.

The first is a Washington Post article about a guy that wrote an email detailing his suicide, to multiple journalists. All he wanted was acknowledgement and validation of his work that he published in the 70s. What did these journalists do? NOTHING. Until it was too late. The author of the article asked “what was she supposed to do”? Answer: TALK TO THE PERSON! This guy waited several hours for a response before he jumped to his death. He was obviously waiting, desperately, for some kind of response to acknowledge his statements. And when he didn’t, he died. He died a needless death because these journalists didn’t take…

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Depression Rhyme

When someone is not well, but all you see is their smiling face Then it’s hard to understand if you’ve never been in their place. Oh, how deeply they suffer; how severe is their pain! There are no words to express what’s so difficult to explain. You can send your love and prayers, your concern […]

Today I Hate The Sun

It’s hard to believe that this same sun I was enjoying just the day before yesterday is annoying me so much today. I’m sad, I’m having difficulty focusing and am even having a hard time putting word to blog. I hate the depression, I’ve managed to keep it at bay for a little bit but this morning I woke up slammed by sadness. I just want to curl up in bed an cry. I hurt all over and I am fighting going back to bed.

Why do I have to go from one extreme to the other, the weekend was fucking awesome and today sucks huge hairy balls.. fuck it .. I’m going back to bed.

blah blah blah blah blah blah blah

Trauma teaches you fear, then fear takes over your education completely.

You work your ass off to overcome that, because it can be overcome. You wonder why it only ever seems to work briefly, even after decades. The professionals take a look and say, oh dear, your brain is quite broken, but all is not lost.


You gaze bleakly at your life and your ligaments – all the gall and gristle that got you to that point. You’re a survivor, and if you’re in the mood, please go ahead and celebrate that fact. You’ve earned better treatment than you ever give yourself.


Or sit, head in hands, trying to ignore the wreckage around you. You persevere with courage only you can see, and your head says hamsterwheel, sisyphus, lather rinse repeat.


Compassionate cheerleaders say c’mon you can do it, life is tough for all of us; think positive, be mindful, try this, try that. Thank goodness they do, because without love you are truly lost.


You list your blessings mentally, because counting them would be competitive. You live the clichés, you live to fight another day. Now your life is inspirational quotes and motivational posters. It really isn’t the life you planned, back in the proverbial day, before things fell, jumped, were pushed apart.


You think and think and think and alternate that with hopes and dreams. The hopes and dreams fade before the thinking does.


You can take refuge in the buddha, the dharma, the sanga; you can breathe the wild air of chaos theory. It’s all the same.




A Disordered Personality

I think I am on the mend physically, albeit not as quickly as I’d like. I’m still in pain but it’s down to a five out of ten. Much improved. Still could do without breathing, sneezing, coughing, moving…If I don’t move, I don’t hurt. Logic, eh?

I have had this thorn in my paw for a year or so now ever since the shrink I USED to see tossed out “borderline personality disorder.” I don’t agree, because the similarities between that and bipolar are so similar, you can’t make an accurate call when you’ve spent all of an hour with someone over the course of a year.
All she did by tossing that into the mix is screw my head up some more. Now I think I have a new personality disorder the DSM can add to their next edition. Pseudo bipolarline disorder.
You go through life learning to recognize your own faults. And it gets overwhelming when you take a tally and realize…you are one fucked up puppy.
BUT when you have faith in a person’s ability to change, it makes it seem possible that you’re bent, as opposed to broken, and sometimes things can be bent back into a functional shape.

Counselors and shrinks, with their blanket disorder diagnoses, make you feel like all you can do is change the “bad” behavior. And if you don’t make a blanket change and get it right 100% of the time, then you are still suffering from a personality disorder.
In their infinite educated wisdom where everything MUST fit into a neatly packaged box…
They forget…
You need only exist and experience hardships of life to have a personality “disorder”.
Much like an animal that gets abused or neglected, repeated injury to one’s body or mind results in “disorder”.
I call it fear based on logic.

So what the professionals consider my dysfunction and disorder…I consider battle wounds. The bipolar, depressions, anxieties…Those are chemical misfires. And they do contribute to a disordered personality and mind.
It’s clutter. It’s disorganization. It’s thinking and perception outside “the norm”.
But for there to be a universal norm, we would all have to have the same parents, same genetics, same address, same religion, exact same life experiences.

This all hit me last night when I couldn’t get to sleep because I knew today I’d have to go to the DMV to renew my driver’s license. Formal things make me nervous, always have. It’s one area where I am out of control. I am at the mercy of the powers that be. Last time I renewed, they sprung a surprise written test on me because I’d gotten a seatbelt ticket the year before. I hadn’t picked up a rules of the road book since I was sixteen. Talk about trial by fire.
Because they’d blindsided me once, I went in fearing it could happen again. Not convinced. Just…wary.
Personality disorder?
I don’t think so.
I think my personality is just disordered. Like a messy cluttered closet. You get baggage, it accumulates, it overwhelms.

Do I have any fancy degrees that qualify me to make such “self diagnoses”?
I just live it.
That makes me a foremost expert on my disordered personality. I know what has lead to my disorder. Two working parents, raising my little sister when I was just a kid myself…That would be why I waited until nearing 40 to have a child. I had already raised one and wanted to grow up first.
My fear of rejection? Being taunted daily, mercilessly in school for little more than being outside the rural flannel and denim norm.
Preferring alone to friends? Could stem from overhearing one so called friend say “I only hand out with Niki because no one else will and I feel sorry for her.”
Pessimism? Could relate to spending twelve years in a depressive/manic state, thinking positively yet being proven wrong repeatedly.
My failure to have a successful healthy relationship? Growing up with parents who didn’t like each other and did nothing but have screaming name calling arguments.

If you examine yourself…And I mean, take a long hard look no matter how ugly it is…You will find, your disorders are usually explained by what you have experienced.
It’s not a disorder.
It’s called life.
And aside from fetching the meds that make me stable enough to get through life with my scars…
I’ve lost much faith in the rest of the mental health world.
A general doctor would never see you favoring one leg and assume you have a broken leg. No, they would run tests,x rays, ask questions, do an exam.
Yet shrinks and counselors just administer “accepted” blanket questionairres, act on their own bias, and slap a label on you without even knowing what lies beneath.

Maybe by rejecting that fallacy, I am slowly getting better because I am deferring to my own self knowledge. The stuff they can’t be bothered to weed out.
A dog that gets kicked repeatedly will fear the same from all humans. It could become scared, timid, or go aggressive.
And that’s understandable. It is not slapped with some “neurotic canine disposition disorder”.
So why are people?

Long rambling post, I know.
But my logic is solid.
I went into the whole psychology/psychiatry experience with an open mind and a willingness to accept my own flaws and try to fix them.
But every time a new doc or therapist comes on board, I get slapped with some new diagnosis which negates all the work I’ve done acting on prior diagnoses.
It’s a waste of my time.
It’s a waste of anyone’s time.

If you have a chemical imbalance, meds help. That requires a shrink to prescribe.
But if you have the maturity and self awareness to examine yourself and identify your issues that make life more difficult…Then you can be your own counselor.

A good counselor can help you.
But a bad counselor can make it worse.
I’ve tried. And tried. And tried some more.

I am just going to embrace my dysfunctions. Or what are perceived as dysfunctions.
I’ll work on the stuff that hinders me.
I’ll accept the things that are scars and likely will be issues for the rest of my life.

I will accept myself, warts and all, and not allow anyone, with or without a degree, to invalidate me with their asinine and false labels.

Or I will try. Invalidation leaves its own scars and makes you question yourself.

Maybe it’s time to start questioning the professionals and their methods.

Having a cluttered closet isn’t illegal, isn’t necessarily dysfunctional, and it will not cause the world to burst into flames.
Why should a messy personality be any different?
Food for thought, people.

Back to ECT


Well I am back to having ECT after a longggggg fucking delay.  My last treatment was October 27 and I should have had a maintenance treatment a month later, but it took this long to get all my ducks in a row.  What a cluster!!

They wanted me to come back this Thursday (two days later!) for another treatment but I said FUCK NO!!  My parents are here visiting and I miss a whole day when I have a treatment.  I’m down for the count after having a treatment, having to stay in bed and rest afterwards.  I will think about having another treatment next week.

I do feel better, less dark-mooded, so I think the zap did me good.  I’m taking my Mom & Dad to Tarpon Springs today, it’s supposed to be pretty cool, they harvest sponges from the ocean there.  I think that will be cool to see.

I’m trying to just repeat positive affirmations and say the Unity prayer (The light of God surrounds us, the love of God enfolds us, the power of God protects us, the presence of God washes over us, wherever we are, God is, and all is well).  It feels like a powerful affirmation to me.

Let’s hear it for getting back to functioning!  Yeah!!!


P.S. – Here is a pic from the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary, it was a dreamland for bird lovers like me :)

Filed under: Bipolar, Bipolar Depressed, Bipolar Disorder, Bipolar ECT, Psychology Shmyshmology Tagged: Bipolar, Hope, Mental Illness, Psychology, Reader