Right

The only thing I can figure is that I must be doing it right.  Whatever “it” is, I see no way I can be doing it wrong.   No one has ever been in the same situations I have been in, there is nothing to compare it to.  So why do I constantly find myself wanting someone to tell me that everything is going to be alright?  If I’m doing it right there shouldn’t be any reason for reassurance.  I should just know that everything is going to be alright.

I have had things to write but, with a few exceptions, I haven’t been able to concentrate well enough to sit down and get it out in cohesive thoughts.  For starters, the past week was pretty good, we went to my sister’s house for the Christmas holiday (Northern Virginia).  We were there from Monday evening through Saturday afternoon.  They are in the process of moving out of their house so things were somewhat in disarray.  They’re trying to get packed and at the same time celebrate the holiday.  It takes a lot of energy to keep up those kinds of things.  That’s energy I just don’t have.  No matter how much coffee I drink or “5 Hour Energy’s” I consume.  Luckily, everyone involved was able to see that I wasn’t really able to participate.  I felt like a bump on a log the whole time, but I managed to keep it from affecting my mood too much.  It WAS great to be able to spend time with everyone.

I finished the third week of two separate courses of antibiotics (1 for a week, 1 for 2 weeks) last week and I guess the sinus infection is gone.  My nose is still all clogged up but the sinus headaches and other congestion is gone.  I think a combination of the medication and the infection is what sapped my energy.  I also think the antibiotic has been messing around with my psych meds.  I can’t pinpoint it, but I have been having some break through depression, like a sadness drive-by.  It doesn’t last very long but it has been pretty profound at times.  I’ll watch it closely and see if it continues.  I have an additional comment about medications.  Over the past month and a half, I have gained some weight.  I’m not sure how much but I can say that my clothes have been fitting differently. Plus, my blood sugar measurements have been all over the place and that is highly abnormal.  I have checkups with both my docs in January so we’ll get to the bottom of this.  Oh yeah, one other thing, the Lithium tremors have become more bothersome over the last week or so.  At times, it has been very tricky using the mouse or typing/selecting icons on my phone.  Also something I am keeping a close watch on.

Given the second and third paragraphs, I don’t think I’m doing everything right.  If I was, I wouldn’t be complaining as much as I am.  I guess I still have work to do.  I’m afraid it is going to be a constant thing in my life.  Just here, working on getting it right.

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43

Tomorrow is my birthday.  It seems like it was just here, although, this time last year wasn’t all that great.  For starters, I was getting over side effects of a false start with Lamictal and I was sliding into depression.  Plus, it wasn’t as if my forty-second birthday was all that major of an event.  Forty-three still isn’t that big of an event either, but I feel better and I am in a much better place mentally than I was this time last year.  Speaking of this year, as is the custom at the end of the year, many people reflect on the past events and say what they are thankful for.  Plus, on my birthday, I look back at the year that I have had and talk about that time.  There really is no point in doing it twice.

I am thankful for:

My parents, without whom, I would probably be languishing in an institution somewhere.  They have provided support to me that would be impossible to duplicate.  They are the biggest reason I am doing as well as I am.  Thank you Mom and Dad for making me and still having the ability to love me through all of this.  I know there have been times when I haven’t been the easiest person to live with.  Thank you for putting up with me and showing a mountain of patience.

My family, for giving me unconditional support, accepting my frailties and making me feel loved.

My friends, for everything they have said and done, there’s a reason why we’re all friends.

My therapist, for listening, suggesting and pushing me beyond myself and my comfort zone.

My psychiatrist/chef, for finding the right combination of medications to keep my symptoms at bay.  Better living through chemistry 🙂

The NAMI Peer support group, such a fantastic collection of people.

Everyone who reads my blog and gives me support through likes and comments, who in turn provide me the all important evidence that I am not alone in my struggles.

WordPress, for hosting my blog, for giving me a place to put my demons, likes, loves, fears and so much more.

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“Some of it’s magic, some of it’s tragic, but I had a good life all the way”  — JB

Here’s to 43 more!!!!!!

Wasted Time

I heard this song last night as I was on my way back to the hotel last night after spending the whole day at my sister’s visiting with relatives and opening presents.  I was feeling really good, it had been a great day.  Then there was this song on the radio and it was as if everything stopped.

“So you live from day to day, and you dream about tomorrow, oh
And the hours go by like minutes and the shadows come to stay
So you take a little something to make them go away
And I could have done so many things, baby
If I could only stop my mind from wondrin’ what
I left behind and from worrying ’bout this wasted time”

I wasn’t sure what to think, I’m not sure now what I was thinking.  When I got to the hotel, I put my pajamas on, wrote a little about one of my gifts and got in bed.  I was staying as far away from that song and thoughts that it brought up as a could.  The TV was on, it was playing one of the “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies but I just lay there, waiting for sleep.  It didn’t come very fast, so I played with my phone for a while…. I eventually fell asleep.

When I woke this morning I was in a better mood, but this song has been lingering with me for the whole day.  I wish there was some way I could get rid of it.  Maybe something will come up that will take its place.

Oh yeah, the song is “Wasted Time” by The Eagles

“Brain On Fire”

I received this book for Christmas.  “Brain on Fire – My Month of Madness” by Susannah Cahalan.  It’s the story of a young woman who wakes up one day to find herself alone in a hospital room, strapped to her bed and unable to move or speak.  I found the cover description riveting because there are a lot of us with similar experiences (if not the same).  I’m going to start reading tonight and I’ll let everyone know how I like it.  Don’t expect anything too extensive in the way of a review.  Also, do not expect me to be done with the book too soon, ever since I started with this blog I’ve been rubbish at making time in my day to read.  I’ve been trying to finish “Bruce”, a biography of Bruce Springsteen since mid-September.  For some reason, I get caught up in writing (which I think I’m going to scale back on a bit) and reading other blogs.  Other bloggers read mine so I feel it only right that I read theirs.  Hopefully cutting down on the number of items I publish every day will mean that I have more time for reading.  OK, now that I have gotten off track, I will call it a night.

I hope everyone had a happy and safe holiday.

“I Am Mental Illness” Vs. “I Have Mental Illness”

This is what I’ve been trying to get at for a while.

theothersid3

To be bipolar is to be controlled by my illness. To have bipolar is to have control over my illness. The subtleties of language have great differences in meaning. I imagine to be diagnosed with any mental illness, the initial tendency is to slap the label on myself, saying I am ADHD, anxiety, depression, bipolar, BPD, schizophrenic, <insert mental illness diagnosis here>. Likewise, the initial tendency for a person not educated about mental illness is to label those people who have it according to their illnesses.

I suspect this is the case because mental illness has an effect on the mind, which is very near to our core being. When it spins out of control, it is magnified and shows up prevalently in the forefront of that person. In order to become diagnosed, this must often happen. In my case, I couldn’t help but look out through a looking glass…

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Profound or Mundane

Every morning I get up and I start to go about my day with the full intention of doing something impressive, something more than what I do on a regular daily basis.  I continually look for the profound in the mundane.  There has to be something special in all of the items I’ve published on this blog.  I think that is why I publish so much (536 posts in 2 and a half months), I’m looking for something to break through.  I’m trying to write something that will get some attention from the majority of the people following me and from people that are finding me for the first time.  Am I looking for success too soon?  Have I already attained success that I just can’t see?  I’m afraid there’s no right answer here.  I think maybe I’m going about this the wrong way.  I’m not really sure what the right way is for me but it has to be something other than this.  I have written a few things today that I will publish.  Outside of those items, I don’t think I’ll be publishing much over the next week.  I’m going to visit some family for the holidays.  I hope everyone has a safe and happy holidays.