Daily Archives: April 22, 2015

Art and Fear of Falling

Yup, it's a day for Doubts. I'm getting ready for an art show, my first “real” art crawl ... but part of me is in panic mode...

Zoned Out, Freaked Out, Tapped Out

It was one of those bizarre days where I *think* I have a moderate grip and can do the functionality thing. Ha ha ha. Within five minutes of entry into the dish of petri, I was zoning out to what was going on around me.
As time passed, panxiety kicked in and scumbag brain kept telling me all this crappy shit that could go wrong and send my house of cards down around me.
As if I am not aware of this daily, hourly, the anxiety monster swoops in from no place of logic with no trigger and starts flogging my brain with all these potentially catastrophic events.
It is no easy feat to be around others, especially those who don’t think mental illness is a real condition, when your mind is in that fucked up place. You can’t focus. You’re trembling. You have to surreptitiously hide your hyperventilating. Make excuses as to why your name was spoken four times and you were in mental Disneyland and oblivious. Then explain why you couldn’t get one simple thing right. (I was to turn on a flat panel TV and um, yeah, I still use an old CRT so I’ve no fucking clue about these stupid things and their inputs and hdmi and blah fucking blah so yeah, I couldn’t even get the tv connected to flip over to cable. Ignorance is not idiocy.)
Leaving the house is the enemy. I am convinced of it more everyday. And that’s not depression talking. It’s just a fact that outside my bubble, I get worse rather than better. Just because my coping skills are better at home doesn’t mean I am some hermit shunning the possibility that “getting out there” might help me feel better.
Sometimes…Okay, on rare occasion…Forcing myself out does help with the mood. (I pay for it later.)
But the anxiety…It’s a killer. And when your anxiety comes with an agoraphobic issue, it’s living hell. Because getting out may help one faction of your disorder but the price that comes with it for another aspect of another disorder is very, very high.

Catch 22.

I will say this much…When you are in zoned out freaked out mode…every minute passes like an hour. You NEED your safe space more than you need your next breath. And sure, you tough it out, disappear into the bathroom for the water works or panic attacks (and then everyone assumes you have some sort of urinary infection) and make it through…
It is still grueling.
And no sooner than I was on my way to get my kid and escape to the bubble…My sister decides today’s a good day to grocery shop and we’d planned on it Monday. Needless to say the thought of facing the uber packed Aldi store elevated my state of being “freaked out.”
Come to think of it, Monday when I stopped in to talk to my sister and asked if she’d go to Aldi with me because “the crowds freak me out and I could use the moral support…”
Our mother rolled her eyes, snorted, and said, “You are so ridiculous.”
Ridiculous is the way women can’t go out for a meal or date without having to congregate in the bathroom together.
Being petrified of crowds is not ridiculous.
My mother is..ugh.
But I muddled through, even with the yapping I WANT THIS I WANT THAT WHY CAN’T I HAVE THIS YOU ARE SO MEAN child in tow. I must admit, it was nice to spend a little time with my sister. But she drives her mother in law’s newfangled car, the one with the button to start it rather than a key, and I kept getting locked in and it was freaking me out. Like being locked in a closet or held down with a pillow over my face. I don’t do well with the unfamiliar. Or “upgrades”. Old school suits me fine. Except for dial up internet, that is ass trash.

I am sure many who happen upon this blog, read one or two posts and go, “Even for a depressed person, she’s always so negative. Does nothing in her life ever make her not complain?”

I tried doing that blog. Being all random and quirky and stuff. No one read it. Apparently, misery is in demand. Or more so, people are just reaching out, trying to find something they can relate to. For some it’s the happy feel good “i’m overcoming this” blogs. For others it’s the “informative let me regurgitate all this information I researched on line” blogs.
I like the quirky ones. The ones that are inconsistent. One day a post about an article, new research in mental illness, a link to another blog, a sarcastic comic, an inspirational picture quote. And lots of swear word laden “middle finger to mental illness” rants.
Those are the ones that speak to me.
And maybe because those are what mine is. Inconsistent. Oddly entertaining from time to time.

It was nice to survive yet another day with the demons. And sorry for not using a more cheerful term for mental illness but…They are my demons. The word is appropriate. (Sometimes I even envision them(the multiple mental issues) as Crowley, The King Of Hell, from Supernatural, and I fight hard to wide that smarmy smirk off his/their face.)
Plus, considering some of the turbulent up down mixed states with bipolar…It can feel like demonic possession at times.
Spook and I were invited to R’s to watch Arrow tonight. I said, “I don’t know.” Because I really am not feeling the social thing. And I’m never really comfortable in his home where you have to float an inch off his wife’s white carpet and be careful you don’t shed any dead skin cells and soil the showplace. It’s just gotten to be so uncomfortable I’ve been passing on the invites. Maybe if I were in a different place mentally, I’d feel differently. I dunno anything anymore. I’ve pondered forcing myself to do it, getting out is supposed to be good for me, and my kid always has a blast playing with all the toys they have there for their grandkids…But we have a routine on school nights and I don’t like altering from it. With a hyper child, anything that might stimulate her so close to bedtime is just going to result in me suffering.
Meh. My mood may change in the next ninety minutes. I never know.
I am informed of mood swings by snail mail so it’s usually three or four days after the fact I find out.

So in the interest of being well balanced (ha ha ha)allow me to toss out a couple of (what I thought) were happy or funny thoughts.

My daughter, ever curious and questioning, got on a kick about how to tell boy cats from girl cats. She insisted only boy cats have long tails. Um…I said, no, boy cats have nards. And she asks what nards are. I laughed so hard. Told her it was a body part girls don’t have. I didn’t even think about it after that.
Yesterday, she gets this stuffed cat to pack around and I called it a boy and she gives me this incensed look. “MELISSA IS A GIRL, SHE DOES NOT HAVE NARDS.”
Even if I’m not gonna get mother of the year, that’s funny as hell.

The newbie kittens are now six weeks old. Brimstone is the fatter more social and feisty one. Castiel is very subdued, gentle, likes to sit in the chair next to my thigh.
I admit, watching them tumble about and pounce each other, as well as the bigger adopted kitten Pantera, joining in, then big chubby year old Voodoo…It’s entertaining. It used to bring such joy, like a drug. Now it’s this joy I remember, and I want to feel, but the best I can muster is a few smiles and an occasional giggle.
But hey, take what we can get.

On an ending note…
I had KFC today and I’d been craving fried chicken so it was good…But at one point I got a look at their newly designed sporks, which are more square than round, and it freaked me out. Deviation is eeevil. Sporks are supposed to be round with vicious little teeth, dammit. A square spork is just stupid. Efficient but dumb dumb dumb.
I have had this running fixation on sporks for many many years.
And no apologies, I am letting that freak flag fly.

Now…I am tapping out.

A Nurse’s Hands

And now, for something a little different.

Lately I’ve taken to looking at my hands, which appear to have morphed into my grandmother’s in recent years. They are well-worn and the skin is thinning rapidly, much to my dismay. While a layer of fat fills in the lines in my face, the same thing can’t be said for my hands, which tell my life story without words.

And then I think: these hands have held new life, and comforted the dying.

These hands have given the first bath…..and the last.

They have been washed literally hundreds of thousands of times in the service of people I didn’t give birth to.

They have administered the first feeding and the last dose of morphine.

They have rubbed sore backs, dressed wounds, smoothed fresh linens over feverish bodies. They have fed, cleaned, stopped bleeding, performed CPR. They have also prepared the living for surgery, and the dead for their final journey.

They are the hands of a nurse. And while I’m no longer a working nurse, my hands will forever bear the marks of the noble work they once did.

And somehow, that makes the wrinkles OK.

Tell Us About YOUR Blog!

I thought while I getting on my blogging feet, we might do a blog “party” again. This was successful last month and I thought it could be a monthly thing…and it’s that time again.

So tell us what you blog about. And if you are a new blogger and trying to grow, don’t forget to go visiting. And leave a comment, so people know you were there! 🙂

So I’ll start us off:

I’m Lily and my blog is about bipolar illness and recovery. I’m just out of the psych hospital so recovery will be a process. Come and read….https://lilypupslife.wordpress.com/

Death, Grief, & the Beast

Melissa passed on as did my brother-in-law Don. Grief that I denied myself now hits me. Now I realize how much compassion I withheld from my husband as I defended myself from pain from being needed. My prayers go out to…


I read preliminary versions of research papers last night and got so discouraged.  Every person would have failed one way or another if I had graded them as final versions.  It made me wonder what I was doing with my time and why I was even bothering to try to teach since they were obviously not getting the material I had tried to put across. So many of them still did not even understand documenting source material and were committing plagiarism as a result.

I understand that writing is difficult for some people while it isn’t for me.  But this kind of systemic failure points to something else–either I did not put the material across correctly or every single person was not listening.  Even my typically good writers had major flaws in their papers.  I feel that it somehow reflects on me and what I’m doing.  It certainly makes me want to give up teaching for good.  I don’t know what to do except hand them back with comments on what they’ve done  incorrectly and try to encourage them to do better.  I’m just kind of at a loss for words.

Banana Tornado

Kid you not…”Banana Tornado” were the first words my daughter said to me upon waking. She’d climbed in my bed at some point, of course, and I woke up with her eyes wide open, staring at me, and she gives this impish yawning grin and says “Banana tornado.” I asked her to explain wtf that is and she just giggled.
Random. Like mother, like daughter.
In a scary moment…She’s been talking about “the friends in my head” for two years now. I can’t discern if this is her own thoughts, childhood folly, or imaginary friends. But as she has not grown out of it I am getting a little concerned. And yeah, okay, I am an alarmist. But with mental illness on both sides of our family, it’s not invalid.
Yesterday, she informed me, “The friends in my head are talking about you. They don’t like you. They think your hair looks dumb, you have lice, they hate you. They don’t want you here. You’re mean. They want to talk to you and tell you it themselves.”
What. The. Actual. Fuck.
I’ve a vivid imagination, makes sense between the natural tendency of children and that my child would have one, as well. And I really don’t believe in medicating children simply because they deviate from the “norm” so it’s not like I am out to slap her with a label and shovel meds. But I am becoming more concerned.
It probably doesn’t help that I finished reading a book last week about an eight year old boy who stabbed his mother.
Paranoia, much?
Ugh. So hard to make a judgment call. I took her to a counselor and the counselor just laid all her bad behavior off on me. She sensed my anxiety, she picks on my depression, she’s scared of abandonment, blah blah blah. At no point was Spook encouraged to take responsibility for her actions. It was all me.
I gave up on therapy between that and my crappy last experience.

Except in the interest of doing “all” that I can to help myself, I’d started entertaining the notion of placing a call to the counseling center’s on call person. Explain what happened and how it made me feel, make sure I don’t end up with that counselor again.
THEN came the kicker.
R’s daughter, the one with the master’s in psychology, the arrogant snot who thinks mental illness is all behavioral and had to bicker with my five year old over how she’s smarter because of her degree…
She’s apparently getting a job at that mental health center.
Which ensures I will never ever ever go back.
Even if I begged off as a conflict of interests based on our personal history…There is no such thing as confidentiality in this town. It’s sad but true. I’ve known people from the hospital who talk about your medical records. People at the health department having a good chortle over who came in for a pregnancy or STD test.
Um, yeah, it’s a small counseling center, everyone has access to all the records…I will not be baring my soul at the place again. Maybe I sound insane. It’s a trust thing. I trusted the last counselor and she broke confidentiality by telling my stepmother I’d missed an appointment. It was a big deal to me. Then she tossed out borderline after I’d just discussed it with my exiting counselor who assured me I was NOT borderline. FFS, my head was being screwed up worse.
Now T the Terror will be on staff.
And she will discourage meds for everyone and berate them (trust me, I’ve seen her do this to numerous people, including her own father and siblings). Professionalism is one thing but her core philosophy is based on behavior, no grasp of pharmacology unless someone is violent. It’s not that I don’t like T, she can be fun. She did take me out for my birthday and gave me a small gift. She’s not evil. But her general operating system flies in the face of psychiatric diagnosis requiring meds as opposed to psychology’s “talk it out” OS.
NO. Does Not Want.

The other day my horrorscope warned me that “someone in your life will be very nice to you, which is out of character for them. It will disconcert and confuse you.”
Last night proved it true. R called to THANK me for being there yesterday and helping keep him on track and just being company. I mean, I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve gotten a heartfelt thanks from this man. It was…nice but scary. As in, what the fuck is he buttering me up for. I wish I could call it my pessimism but I’ve been proven right often enough to warrant suspicion.
He told me if I came in today and just let him bounce ideas off me, he’d put gas in my car. I can’t afford to turn it down. Besides, he gets so involved in his repairs, I spend my time surfing Reddit and Fark and occasionally answering the phone. Meh. I’m not feeling it but my mind is in a less grim place so I will suck it up.

Buried alive. The housework has devoured me again. I keep letting it slide and it’s snowballed and I feel like I am trying to chisel my way out of an avalanche with a pipe cleaner. I fucking hate housework. Some people thrive on it, find it cathartic. To me it’s just a waste of time because ten hours later, it will need done again. I think housework is the bane of my existence. Even when I do my best, I still have excessively low standards of cleanliness. And people aren’t shy to tell me so. Ya know what? Ya don’t like it, clean it yourself.
Ha, like anyone would ever help me out.
Double ha, like I could stop being a neurotic control freak and allow someone into my home to touch my stuff. Bad enough yesterday my dad and brother came in to use the bathroom. This is my sacred space. I don’t like it to be tainted. I’ve even banned my kids friends from coming inside. Mainly because last time I let them in, they trashed the house, ripped doors off the hinges, painted my kid’s door with nail polish. And sadly, I was watching thm closely but six kids, most of them feral, not even an octopus could keep up with.
No more.
I may come around eventually. Just not now. Plus, I resent the kids going home and telling their parents how bad a housekeeper I am. And then there’s this one little girl whose mom doesn’t want her playing here, yet she sneaks over, comes inside for ten minutes, demands food, then leaves and does not come back for months. Ironically, it was after her visit a couple years back my place got robbed. I wouldn’t put it past that family to be casing places. Her dad just spent a year in jail for burglary.
Is my paranoia showing? I must sound nuts.

I am baffled as to why my mental state isn’t at least responding to the change in weather.Usually the sun and warmth are the kicker that bring me out of the seasonal depression. But it’s not happening. I’ve got adorable kittens and usually that’s like crack or meth for me. (Neither of which I’ve ever done but the euphoria I’ve heard involved is what I normally feel for cats.)
The joy just isn’t there. Or maybe it is, but it’s wrapped in so many layers of gauze, I can’t feel it.
Even at night. Used to,once my kid was asleep, that was my time. Clean, read, write, watch shows. I was happy at night.
For the last two years, night has just become the epicenter for depressive crashes.

Today…I don’t know how I feel. Achy. Irritable. (That could be hormonal.)
The thought of facing the dish already has me sweaty and my stomach churning.
I do so much better if I just limit exposure to the dish when I am stable enough to handle it. When I am shaky,it just makes everything worse.
It’s not self isolation, it’s self protection.
A food upsets your stomach, you don’t it.
The petri dish agitates my disorders, I should be allowed to avoid it without being made to feel guilty for “avoidance” behavior.
I seek out company when I am strong enough to handle it.
Otherwise, solitude suits me fine. Besides, I have a kid and cats climbing on me 7 days a week, so it’s not true solitude.

I am starting to think the Focalin will need increased. First two weeks my focus was getting better. Now it seems to be faltering. I mean, I started watching The Flash today but I was so filled with the ping pong ball thoughts, I couldn’t focus on it. I had to do this purge post.
I fear regression.
I fear everything except the norms. I like heights, roller coasters, spiders don’t bother me, I looove snakes. Small places are good for me. Hell, I’m not even scared of clowns, I just find them creepy and prefer to not engage.

Yet ringing phones, mail boxes, traffic, wide open spaces, crowds, noise…That stuff terrifies me to the point of paralysis.
There are times I wonder if one of my parents repeatedly dropped me on my head as an infant.
I ain’t right.
I also don’t think I am entirely wrong.
I am quirky.
Quirky is awesome.
Quirks is the new black.

Now…Back to Barry Allen. I never liked comic books but the CW has done a wonderful job with Flash and Arrow. (I hate dudes with short hair, but I’d still climb Arrow’s Oliver Queen like a sequoia. And perhaps Felicity as well, cos she is smart and hot.)
Um, overshare?
Yeah…Back to the show, then I will attempt to whip myself into some semblance of humanity.
Walking uphill in molasses.
I miss the feels good side of me.
She’s been missing for a very long time and they won’t even put her on the side of a milk carton.

a-z challenge: s

S is for solitude and of course, solitude is very different to loneliness; even the word is prettier.

Loneliness is marked by a sense of isolation. Solitude, on the other hand, is a state of being alone without being lonely and can lead to self-awareness. (Psychology Today, 2003)

Self awareness huh? That shit is tricky … it’s packaged and marketed well, but potentially leads to discontent. I recommend a blend of solitude and distraction to anaesthetise the mind. Well hell, if I was going down the enlightened route I’d have said S is for Simeon Stylites. Solitude is a state of being alone without being lonely and can lead to neurotic obsessive over sensitivity.

Simeon Stylites - 37 years of solitude.

Simeon Stylites – 37 years of solitude. In an eggcup.

What is necessary, after all, is only this: solitude, vast inner solitude. To walk inside yourself and meet no one for hours — that is what you must be able to attain. Rainer Maria Rilke – Letters to a Young Poet

i-came-to-a-point-where-i-needed-solitude-and-just-stop-the-machine-jack-kerouacInner solitude is good, yes, but I’d forego it for the outer kind. I’m an introvert with c-ptsd, if I didn’t get peace and quiet, I’d land up in foetal position, sobbing piteously. Sigh … it has happened. For me, solitude is far more tangible than it is spiritual. Too many people, too much noise, bright lights, these are things that blunt some of my senses and intensify others to the point of that thing where people break glass with their voices. Not. Pleasant. Anyone who’s ever had a proper panic attack knows exactly what I mean (poor sods).

I like being solitary for long enough to start really wanting to see my friends, or to head somewhere for a lovely coffee made my anybody who isn’t me. Loneliness really is shit. I only really, truly started to understand it and feel it once my mother had died and nextofkin had flown home. It didn’t just feel lonely, it felt desolate. Even that didn’t turn me into a sociable little sunbeam, however. I didn’t just want random people for the sake of it, I wanted people who, as Synapse would say, I can be alone with. And if the people you can be alone together with are fsr away, what then? Well, the blahpolar recipe for enjoying solitude while not going round the bend with isolation is as follows …

No, not that, this …

one-can-be-instructed-in-society-one-is-inspired-only-in-solitude-quote-1Rage, rail, weep, bitch, moan and whine about it. Shaking your fist at the sky and challenging the universe to bring it on is highly recommended.
The universe will indeed bring it; at this juncture, you should repeat step one for as long as it takes to break you.
Whenever people make constructive suggestions, you should snarl and emanate as much bitterness as you can. Thought you were already lonesome? Not till you’ve alienated your remaining friends, family, the woman at the post office etc etc.
That’s more like it, son. No more shaking of fists and beating of breasts (that just hurts anyway), no more sound and certainly no more fury. You’ve been hurled on to the tarmac of reality like Chris Rock when he was flung out of heaven in Dogma.
Now you need to sit in a corner, arms shielding your head, rocking gently and crying under your breath. Today’s word is pitiful.
Pull routine back into your life quietly and gradually. On no account should you admit this to anyone, because they will throw their hands up in the air and doing the hallelujah chorus. It’ll make you want to 1812 ’em.
Ffs have a shower.
Gently stick a toe outside – repeat until your entire body is out there and you are more or less ambulatory.
Walk. Walk every fucking day. A dog makes it a gazillion times easier. Go as slow as you want, just do six stepsmif that’s all you can handle, but do it.
Lather, rinse, repeat until you’re still incredibly unhappy, but rather enjoying the wistful sadness.
Reward yourself with chocolate or an orgasm or something.

love minimalistic solitude 1920x1080 wallpaper_www.wallpapermay.com_61

Oh look, you’re getting up in the morning for a regular walk, sunshine no longer makes you weep, the world is peaceful, your home is quiet and your dog loves you. That’s quality solitude, that is. But don’t go looking for meaning without a canary and a hard hat.

Roll credits. Roll cigarettes.

Cos that’s how we roll.


Comfort Care for Melissa

Love endures. Thank you for your love and prayers for Melissa and all those who love her.Filed under: What About God? Tagged: caring care, death, love, Melissa, prayer, Steve Pitman