Daily Archives: August 17, 2017

5 Reasons Why We Need to Stop Saying That ‘Women Are Half the World’s Population’

There are better ways for women to advocate for their rights – ways that do not further oppress people outside of the gender binary.

Editorial Review

Dear Readers,

I wanted to take a moment and share with you my first editorial review for my book, “Bipolar Disorder, My Biggest Competitor:  An Olympian’s Journey with Mental Illness.”

Betsy Bethel-McFarland from the Wheeling Intelligencer says, “Amy Gamble is a champion for mental health, advocating for awareness, improved care and the removal of stigma. In her book, she painstakingly describes the details of her own battle with bipolar disorder that led her from the U.S. Olympic team to a prosperous career for a top Fortune 500 company to a small jail cell in Montana and — eventually — to recovery. Amy’s firsthand experiences with the obstacles of our own health care and justice systems are chilling. And just when you think her nightmare has to be over, it starts all over again. You come to understand that mental illness truly levels the field: No amount of money, prestige or physical strength can protect you from it. But her survival instinct, her faith in God, and the work ethic she developed growing up on a West Virginia farm and honed as an Olympic athlete kept her trudging onward through her darkest days. The book is in part a cautionary tale — a “what not to do” — for the health care industry, as well as for families of those who are mentally ill and sick individuals themselves. Above all, it is a story of Amy’s redemption, a reclaiming of the life she thought she lost and the emerging of a true champion who dares to dream again. Mental illness won far too many battles in Amy’s life, but through her own education, proper care and sheer determination, she won the war. By sharing her story, she has ensured that her struggles were not in vain and many people will benefit from her victory.”

Click Here to Order




Security Job Interview Today!

Well there must be a God because I got the Security job interview without the managerial reference!  I sent the damn contracting company two peer references and one of my dear, dear friends who I used to work at Starz with gave me a knockout reference and they decided to let me interview!!!!!!  I never heard back from my former manager.

I am so intimidated by this interview, I was praying for a hailstorm to bust the windows out of my car so I wouldn’t have to go to it!!  I still fight the feeling of being a fraud even though I have this training and studied for a solid six months for the two certifications.  I wanted to blow this off so bad due to fear, but I am forcing myself to rise to the occasion and TRY.  I got up at 5am to start studying for the interview and I have until 11am.  I downloaded one software package that I know they use and I have been doing tutorials on it for about an hour and a half.  I tried to download another software package, but they won’t let me without a business email address.  FUCKERS!!!!!  So that is why I had the free time to write this quick post.  I will just go in as prepared as I can be, and if I can’t answer a question, I’ll just say “I can learn it” – my go-to answer.

Please pray for me or send me good thoughts – I really want a job in Security needless to say and I really really want to be saved from having to take a job in Desktop Support.   I also think it would be best for my mental health if I did NOT have to take a job in Desktop Support and that is the TRUTH!! Hope you all are well!  Peach out!  BPOF!

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

In My Dreams

So normally my sporadic sleep and dreams result in me not to wake up even when the dreams are particularly nasty.

Last night…Nope. I had this hella nightmare where I went to see the doc nurse and she just tweaked my Xanax without regard to my Trintellix and sent me on my way so I demanded to see Dr. B and flung myself on his desk and begged for him to be my doctor again. Which of course lead to them all having a chat and declaring me batshit and needing locked down. And I was pounding against the plexi glass at the looney bin screaming that I was not a danger to myself or others, I just MISS my doctor who actually makes me feel like more than a checklist of symptoms. I was screaming that I HAD to be out because I needed to take my kid to some function and how dare they put me in a position of letting her down just because I spoke my mind…

And then it got better as the shrink, the one I like, took me and Spook on this supervised outing and…at the end of the night, he and doctor nurse got together and decided, based on the word of those around me, that I was suicidal and they took my kid and locked me back up and all I’d ever done was the usual sarcastic “I wanna drink bleach rather than go to this family shindig”….

If dreams mean anything, I think this one means I should keep my true thoughts to myself lest they lock me up. Even a 24 hour hold could make me look like an unfit mother and honestly, I know my stepmonster would be all too happy to step forward and agree and take my kid away. I know this because she’s told people as much. And if it were a matter of my kid going hungry or being beaten, fine. But because my house isn’t spic and span and I don’t have a surplus of money..those are not reasons you call someone an unfit parent.

Or am I projecting my own fears?

When she got back from church last night, I was informed there was an incident on the bus where Spook just wanted the other kids to be quiet, which even the grown ups agreed with, but when the others failed to listen to Spook and obey…she screamed, ‘FINE, I AM GONNA GO HOME AND TAKE 4 MELATONIN AND KILL MYSELF!”

I was horrified. And pretty sure melatonin won’t kill you by itself. I keep all pills out of her reach, anyway, and only meter out the bedtime dose, APPROVED BY THE PEDIATRIC NURSE PRACTITIONER. I have never told her or anyone, out loud, aside from psych professionals, about any inclination toward an overdose on pills. Gargling razor bloods, drinking bleach, juggling chainsaws…NEVER a word about pills. If anything, I discourage her from taking anything even tylenol, because I know what a hell the medi go round is.

I can’t say this is the first time she’s said something about killing herself. She does it often enough for it to worry me, but it is almost exclusively related to people telling her no or disagreeing with or stressing her out and she comes out of it pretty fast then wonders what the problem even was. Sound familiar to any bipolars?

I’m gonna see about counseling for her, but god knows what she will tell them. And I watch enough TV to know half of the psych professionals are just as fucked in the head as the rest of us and everyone’s opinion varies so one person’s unfit is called my upbringing which I thought compared to other kids wasn’t too damned shabby. These days it’d be called neglect and abuse. Then again, these days, not giving the snowflakes an iphone makes you a bad parent.

I am not taking her outburst lightly, but at the same time…She may be getting this drama from TV or her friends or whatever, but I know it’s not coming from me. Others won’t believe this, of course, it’s always the sanity challenged who take the blame, but the one thing I know better than any of them…is my kid’s manipulations and tantrums. Once she was home and off that bus, order restored mentally, meaning no excess noise…she was right as rain. Again, that tune sounds familiar. I may not threaten to off myself when the noise overwhelms but coming undone and only regaining equilbrium once the chaos has ended…I definitely know that tune.

So that is what I am dealing with today. Wondering how long before some well meaning person turns me into child protective because my kid is a drama llama and a compulsive liar. She evens lies about her lies when caught red handed and has no qualms. I feel guilty for hitting a possum, ffs, so lack of conscience, once again…not coming from me. Something is wrong with her and I will try to get her help and get if figured out because yeah, they DO put 8/9 year olds in juvenile psych ward-prison places as my sister’s friend’s son found out this year when he hit his teacher the third time. But wait, I can’t do shit until after her well kid check up in September because her dad’s insurance only pays for one a year and I need the ped doc’s referral for therapy or a shrink but first Spook will have to see the nurse practitioner who will then have to refer to the actual doctor…

Fucking ridiculous.

Plus side, I worked out my deal with the power company so they will keep the juice on and I won’t be in debtor’s court. I am sweeping up bug corpses which means the treatment is slowly working its magic. Speaking of sweeping, I need a new broom. I was bashing the twitchy not quite dead bugs so hard, mine broke in half yesterday. (Bring on the jokes about how did I ever get my kid to school without my broomstick.)

Okay. Purge complete. I think I see doc nurse tomorrow. After last night’s dream…Not sure how honest to be, even if I keep my cool. Truth can set you free or get you locked up, if dreams mean anything.

It sucks have the Marquis de Sade for a brain. Daily torture is so not my thing.

To Write or Not to Write

I am kind of struggling with whether or not to continue to try to be an active writer.  When I went on disability, I gave myself a deadline of how much longer I would give myself to writing and “making it” before giving up and doing something else.

So that deadline is now here.  And I am no closer to “making it” than I was starting out.  I have a lot more words written since then, and I have published quite a bit of it in various markets.  But I’m nowhere near writing for paying markets and being a “professional” writer with my creative writing.   I still have my thesis to finish but I have no idea whether or not it will be marketable or salable by the time I do.  I could extend the deadline to when I have finished my MFA, but I’m not sure if that would do me any good to keep chasing after something.

I took this job thinking “This is a good Plan B.”  But I don’t know if Plan B is what God really wants.  It’s not what I REALLY want.  But I don’t want to just sit back and collect disability all my life.  All I can do is pray for doors to open whatever the right plan is.


IBM’s AI can predict schizophrenia by looking at the brain’s blood flow

With 74% accuracy!


IBM’s AI can predict schizophrenia by looking at the brain’s blood flow

And it does so with 74 percent accuracy

Schizophrenia is not a particularly common mental health disorder in America, affecting just 1.2 percent of the population (around 3.2 million people), but its effects can be debilitating. However, pioneering research conducted by IBM and the University of Alberta could soon help doctors diagnose the onset of the disease and the severity of its symptoms using a simple MRI scan and a neural network built to look at blood flow within the brain.

“This unique, innovative multidisciplinary approach opens new insights and advances our understanding of the neurobiology of schizophrenia, which may help to improve the treatment and management of the disease,” Dr. Serdar Dursun, a Professor of Psychiatry & Neuroscience with the University of Alberta, said in a statement.

MRI scans showing statistically significant differing blood flows within the brain – Image: IBM

The research team first trained its neural network on a 95-member dataset of anonymized fMRI images from the Function Biomedical Informatics Research Network which included scans of both patients with schizophrenia and a healthy control group. These images illustrated the flow of blood through various parts of the brain as the patients completed a simple audio-based exercise. From this data, the neural network cobbled together a predictive model of the likelihood that a patient suffered from schizophrenia based on the blood flow. It was able to accurately discern between the control group and those with schizophrenia 74 percent of the time.

“We’ve discovered a number of significant abnormal connections in the brain that can be explored in future studies,” Dursun continued, “and AI-created models bring us one step closer to finding objective neuroimaging-based patterns that are diagnostic and prognostic markers of schizophrenia.”

What’s more, the model managed to also predict the severity of symptoms once they set in. These insights could lead researchers to more effective diagnostic tools and treatment options. And why wouldn’t they? IBM’s most famous AI, Watson, has already shown that neural networks are surprisingly adept at coming up with effective cancer treatment regimens.