Posts

Showing posts from April, 2010
I'm getting sneaky. Ron was sitting on the couch while I was on the computer, and I read him various news articles off the Chronicle website. I've always done that if I had a paper, read him various items. I always do the advice column, for instance.

One of the articles I saw had a rather vague title, something about 9 items you need to notice. The article was a rather stiff version of "Signs of an Emotional Abuser". I decided to put it as "Here are the signs I may be abusing you, honey. #1 Isolating me from friends and family. 2. Refusal to take NO for an answer." I did it very much in the context of "You'd better watch ME!" Not, look at what you try to do to me, you monster. He listened to all 9 and left. He said it reminded him of how God tortures him. Oh-kay.

Last night I did something unspeakable - I ate a couple of large spoonfuls of peanut butter! Formerly a horrible migraine trigger, I seem to be fine now. Good. I woul…

Pill Time

"Heather, I don't care how you take them. Take them all at once, twice a day. It doesn't matter HOW you take them, as long as you take them daily." - Doc, regarding my lithium.

As you know, I have battled some horrible nausea recently. Even worse, I have been battling carbohydrate cravings and indulgences (curse the potato!) to "help the queasy". AGGGH.

So, as of yesterday, I got up, had a very small snack for breakfast, a large lunch, took all my lithium and my wellbutrin at lunch, had a small snack for "dinner" and took my Risperdal before bedtime. I did the same thing today.

I felt unusually CLEAR around 11 AM. But [shrug] I only spent $20 at the mall after work. And I had just been paid. Pretty cool. I sure NEEDED my nap, yesterday and today.

The nausea was considerably better today. I did "warn" Ron - I told him if I seemed to be turning into "Heather the Hatchet" to please let me know and I would eat and take m…

I got inspected

Our vending program requires regular inspections. Our guy came out today.

As he walked in, Ron and I were chatting with some Postal Workers as they prepared their lunches. He looked around and we talked.

Fortunately, he was not present when one food machine went down, and then the other. A lot of controlled tension, outright Ron profanity, and a moderate amount of beating on a machine. Happily, they are stocked and running now. They're old - they have hiccups. When I consider how many parts are in a cold food vending machine, I'm somewhat awed they work as well as they do.

We had the review "The repairman put new brains in this one, this one's good, this one's good. Coffee's fine. Hey, check out the meter reading on my really old snack machine!"

He wants to get me a new snack machine. Excellent. I love snack vending machines. They all have their quirks. He didn't say anything about taking #1, 2, or 3. Good. I'm fond of them. It will…

A burden shared

It's safe to say that my social networks are rife with gossip. I don't mind, I find it oddly comforting to know that everyone knows my business.

Recently, someone I respect referred to Ron as an "Alcoholic" - twice, to his face. I don't believe Ron "heard" the guy. He would have gotten very defensive if he had. I stood there, looking at the guy, and thinking "Thank You!".

I am truly grateful. The worst of my problems have always come from the feeling of solitude, as if my problems had me locked away in some dark prison. "A burden shared is a burden halved", and while no one other than Jesus can really carry my burden, or say much to help, it is so nice to know that they KNOW.

My first-line network is pretty rife with denial regarding all things alcohol. I know they have heard him, drunk, in the background during phone calls. Oh, so very careful not to mention anything about it! Any of us! "Don't talk about it"…

Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses

Ron remarked, several times today, that he's very proud of me for staying on plan with the medication. He loved my statement: I can either have side effects, or symptoms. That was very nice.

We went to Walmart.

Ron wanted something from the Walmart deli, and the fried food smell made me really queasy. I didn't tell him, but I did nibble on some of the candied ginger root I bought last weekend. It helped.

I got some soda. It is cheaper to just buy a 6 pack of bottles, than to buy two "singles" at a gas station! Ron's ride home? An hour late. He sat in the kiddie cart, outside, listening to his book. I applied my new sunscreen and waited.

Eventually, his ride showed up. The Bible + bottle of water + bag of peanuts in a gallon ziplock was well received. Ron said "We talked about God all the way home".

I went to the bathroom, and then headed off to a thrift store. I had a cell phone in one hand, and a soda in the other. A nice young man, who hap…

Crazy people shouldn't have kids

I've spent days ranting on a news website. I keep saying the same thing: "I'm crazy, and crazy people shouldn't have kids!" I am sure people think I am horrible, mean, and "UnAmerican".

A little background: I just ate, and took my pills, These acts will ensure a few hours of horrible nausea. I will endure it. I will endure it with good cheer because I'm not sick. Oh, goody. Here comes Mr Headache.

I have signed up to manage this illness, and I'm going to make it look easy if it kills me. I'm going to remind people that we're wonderful people if we take our pills and don't drink. I will talk about hallucinations, delusions, and all the rest. One thing I don't discuss is how much pain this illness causes.

I hear how well I'm doing, and point a finger at the "No Alcohol" rule. I also talk about taking my medication regularly and sucking up all the miserable side effects with good cheer. Why drag everyone do…

Manic Monday

Well, it hasn't been very manic, but it was Monday. I had to get up at 2 AM today. I left Bubba-cat asleep in my bed. It was actually nice walking into work, the honeysuckle was blooming. Lovely.

That's been the nice thing about the l0w-grade mania, instead of depression, I can actually appreciate things like wildflowers and honeysuckle. I can literally smell the flowers, instead of slogging through a horrible dark swamp, surrounded by doom, gloom, and negativity.

After getting our pallet of soda, rotating the stock, and unloading the pallet (whew!), it was time to get the donuts. I went out and got the donuts - the weather was warming and I could smell the honeysuckle and a plant Ron calls "Bee Food". I had a nice wait. I got the donuts, stocked them, and helped Ron.

Yesterday, by the way, I woke up with a horrible headache and nausea. Sad but true, it is still SO much better than my illness. I will take it! Thank God for the side effects, they mean I am …

I have a lot of questions

I have a lot of questions about my life, and the way I live it. Some things, no question: my faith in God, my committment to my husband/marriage, my work ethic.

Other times, I have questions:
Why do I act like it's so hard to do something nice for myself, like play my favorite music playlist while I'm online?
Do I really think I don't deserve happiness? Why? Why am I hard on myself, trying to carry all these burdens?

Things like this: Would I have fewer Dr Peppers, if I cut back on my headaches? I decided to leave that as typed. [giggle] I drink a LOT of diet soda. Could I reduce the frequency and severity of my headaches by cutting back on the diet pop? If I could, would I want to? Can I do anything about the headaches? Are they really just side effects of 2/3 of my medication, or an indication of something worse?

Am I at "optimal" management of my illness? Is there something I can do to make it better? A lot of anxiety issues - how much of that is …

Severe Weather

Yesterday, Ron heard a forecast and decided he didn't want to go to Walmart early. "Severe Weather".

He made an early afternoon trip, and I agreed. We both needed a few things.

Our ride came during the middle of a cannibal mutant movie. I got out to the cab first; for a guy who's always complaining about being on time, he takes forever getting out to the vehicle.

By the time he came out, the cab driver and I were talking. Interrupting, he tried to get the driver's attention, but she was very interested in my description of bipolar disorder. By the time we got out of the cab, he was in full-on pout mode.

He put on his headphones, ignoring me. He said he didn't want to talk. Fine. Then he put on a very dramatic show of "I'm so tragic", drooping dramatically, heavy sighs, and putting his head down on the cart - which he knows freaks out the other shoppers. Sure enough, I had concerned people grabbing my arm and telling me I had to "He…

Nausea-Depression

UGH. I thought I was done with the nausea; I assumed my body had adjusted to the Wellbutrin. Well, you know what happens when you ass-u-me.

[groan] So, it looks like my Manic-Depression has now become Nausea-Depression. I don't get manic, I get nauseated. Last time was 2 months, but [shrug] I did lose 10 pounds.

I was going to look up a nausea rating scale, found a bunch of articles on chemotherapy. Thank you, God, for that, and the reminder that Bipolar type one has a 20% suicide rate - a lousy mortality rate compared to some cancers!

Anyway, I did find my Ginger Root - praise God. I took some, that usually helps. Looks like I'll be buying more, tomorrow. URG.

No matter how bad my medication nausea gets, I never vomit. I just stay miserably queasy. I gag down food, it stays down. I gag down pills. I drink lots of liquid. It seems to help.

And I remind myself that nausea is a lot better than a mania, or a depression. I'm the only one suffering. When I'm…

Boy, today was a real faith-building exercise

I got up early, got my shower and all. Ron was still a little foggy today - so interesting, the similaries between our medications! I hope and pray, literally, that I am as supportive as possible.

Oh, and Anonymous, you don't have to do 10 million different names. I don't ban comments based on the user name, I open it, read it, and reject or publish that way. Stay Anonymous. I still love you ((((hugs)))). I would really miss you if you didn't post.

We went to the warehouse and got some supplies. Ron wanted canned juice drinks (wince) and I needed more Sun Chips (wince). I did look at bagged peanuts for Driver Candy - but I am still debating if I should hand out something salty, like a peanut. I would like to distribute a "healthy" snack, something a diabetic can eat, and something a driver can eat while driving that won't make them too thirsty. I think crackers are out on the diabetic issue, and also the thirst one, as well. I like the concept of …

Sub-level

"Love is patient, love is kind." If you're any kind of believer you have heard 1 Corinthians, Chapter 13 many many times. God, living in us, should make us more like him, and we "should" act like the chapter.

Wednesday, Ron was late taking his Neurontin. When he finally woke up he was in pretty extreme pain, and took an extra tablet. It's an anti-seizure medication but it works with the nerve pain.

Ron has had a very difficult time coming to terms with my brain damage. He would say things like "That's a SUB-LEVEL mistake! That's completely unaccceptable!" Perhaps I had forgotten my keys. Once I left my wallet at home and had to go back for it, leaving him at the restaurant. I was about 19 at the time.

Anyway, he always had the attitude that some mistakes were OK, but some were "Sub-level". He would reserve especially cruel comments and name-calling for the "Sub-level" mistakes.

So, he took an extra tablet o…

Crosstown

I think it is safe to say that I do not live in Southwest Houston. It is a long ride to get there, for me.

Ron offered to make a trip for me, to go to Whole Foods. I suggested we could take the wheelchair and go to the House of Pies afterward. We had a very long ride to get there - over an hour.

We encountered that odd lady in our subdivision, who insists she CANNOT ride in the backseat. Either the front seat passenger HAS to move, or she won't ride. The driver said, I guess you're not riding, because we can't force people to move. I don't feed Drama Queens. Note: She can call Metrolift and tell them "I can only ride in the big van" and they will put a code in the computer. I find them offensive because the husband said "I won't ride next to HIM!" - referring to MY HUSBAND. He is not rabid. He is not an animal. He is a person with thoughts and feelings and I am VERY protective of him. I don't care what anyone calls me (hugs to an…

*Yawn* Anonymous Hater again

Anonymous hater is back making derisive comments. I do have the ability to "reject" comments.

I really don't care what you think. Why should I? You're so cowardly you don't even use your real name. You claim I am boring, an asshole, etc, yet you keep coming back to read read read. Obviously you get something out of my posts. I think you enjoy reading what I have to say because I am honest and real. I say what I think, and say it pretty well.

If you have been reading for any length of time - by my lights over a year, you understand I have dealt with truly painful issues. So what is the intent with the anonymous hating? Do you think I'll run away crying when I read your comments?

Am I supposed to be hurt? Afraid? [snort] It takes a lot more than a random comment to insult or injure me. I have dealt with REAL abuse; I have physical scars to prove it. I just wonder why you even bother.

You poor thing, you don't even know I have a whole category…

Anxiety is a part of my illness

Things have gotten pretty quiet with Ron; not great, not bad. He offered to take me crosstown tomorrow and I'll "let" him. We have several things going on, that are pressuring me.

First, our neighbor's new yard guy is tearing up our siding. Compounding the problem is the fact that the neighbor is one of those obsessive lawn-waterers - and their sprinklers strike the side of our house about 4 feet off the ground. Our siding is not in great shape, and the daily dousings and violent weed-whackings are not helping. Ron says he will deal with the problem. I tend to be a little confrontational. I worry about when we'll need to replace the siding, how much it will cost, and how long the new siding will last in the situation.

We have an elderly wood fence on the other side, and very energetic, destructive, children living next door. I don't know if I mentioned the time I actually found one of their little boys literally tearing boards off the fence. A new f…

The Jolly Muslim

Thank God for living in America, and the freedom to type this blog entry! I am a Born-Again Christian. I have done my research, and I have studied many of the "alternatives".

I tease my husband when he talks to the Jehovah's Witness at work - "You're not going to convert, are you?" We both grin. I came home one day and found my husband literally surrounded by Mormons - it's a funny story now. I even read a Book of Mormon, just to see what they were selling. Gack. I understand a little about the followers of Budda. I have studied the Hindus and the Muslims, as well.

Which brings me to the point. Remember the old Robin Hood movies? They used to show Friar Tuck as a big jolly fellow, a glutton, a lover of wine and good humor. He always reminded me a little of Santa, until, at the end of the Robin Hood movie, he married Robin and Marian. Other Sci-Fi movies had the "Priest" - wearing his dark robes. He could be either a good guy, bad guy, wimp, neut…

Out of the darkness

I just had the thought - a lot of times, my illness is akin to life above the Arctic circle. I get 24 hours of darkness, followed by 24 hours of sunshine. Repeat.

I have hopes that I am slowly climbing out of the depression - I have a little more interest in my usual interests, I have a little more brightness in my day. I feel a lot more comfortable handling a mania than I do a depression - enough lithium will make any mania calm down!

So, you're bipolar

For years I searched for answers - tormented by the demons in my head. One day, I got an answer, "Bipolar".

I thanked God I had an answer, and hope for a future without the demons. I could treat this.

I did a lot of research, spent a lot of money, and finally dug up some answers. I'd like to share them with you, and won't it be nice to get some advice without me trying to sell you pills?

Yes, it sucks. What sucks even more is that you'll have this illness for your whole life. It will get better and worse, but you'll always have it. You need to accept that, scream, curse, cry, scream some more, cry, and accept it. Because this is a lifelong illness, you will ALWAYS need medication. This isn't a migraine, where you take medication and stop when you feel better. You will only feel OK BECAUSE of the medication, and the second you stop it will come roaring back, demons and all. Where did I get it? In my case, it was genetic. Both sides of my family…

I'm going to talk about it

Yesterday, I had a good Day Out. I ended up taking a total of 2 Wellbutrin, and my hand is still bothering me quite a bit, but I had a decent time. I've decided to adopt the attitude "Fake it 'till I make it". Act as though I'm not depressed, and maybe it will help. Other people certainly don't need to see me dragging around with a droopy face. Yes, I've had a nasty 7 week depression. Yes, I have a lot of anxieties I view as attacks from the devil. Yes, I have marriage problems, but God is good to me and none of this really matters in the long run.

Did I share God's love? Mercy? Compassion?

Having said all that, I have prayed seriously about this and have decided to share. My mother was so crippled by her illness, she couldn't take care of herself, much less me. Lots of neglect. I can recall lying in my crib crying and crying, watching the sun move across the wall. I used to LIVE for the sound of the door opening, because that meant s…

Trying to figure out what to do.

I have an exciting errand planned for today. I think I might go to the home health store and get a washable pad for Bubba. It's a pad for leakers. Thank you, God, the humans don't have these issues. But Bubba can get pretty pukey.

Mainly, I see it as a stay-busy errand. It'll take me hours. Nothing good on Sci-fi, just stuff that will get in my head and worsen my mood. It's drizzling, 60's.

I read something in my devotional that discussed taking a walk with Jesus. I think a long bus ride counts. That's plan A for now.

I don't want to do anything, except crawl back into bed, and I know that's not God's will for me today.

I can just see me at the store today: "It's for my cat." "SURE it is, lady."

I had a good laugh over this link

100% More caffeine counts as a stimulant.
http://www.caregiver.com/articles/caregiver/caregiver_burnout.htm

Well, it looks like I am absolutely doing the right thing by venting in here... that's good.

http://helpguide.org/elder/caring_for_caregivers.htm

I like this one, too. http://www.agingcarefl.org/caregiver/fourStages/stageThree/section01

Not an *easy* day

It was not an easy day. You'll recall I got up at 2 AM. I was more than a little annoyed that my migraine kept me from falling asleep, and even MORE annoyed that the neighbor kids decided to scream loudly as they bounced on their trampoline, RIGHT outside my bedroom, between 8 and 8:20 PM.

Apparently, I am a heartless monster, because as I shared this today everyone went "Awwww, how cute." I just wanted to mute the little noisemakers. I have often thought, if we decide to move, I'd strongly encourage Ron to move into a senior complex.

I was annoyed. I mean, their parents know we get up very early some days. We are always careful to tell the driver "Don't honk and wake up the neighbors" when they pull up at 3:30 or whatever. [grumble] Maybe we should CHANGE the policy; if they realize how early we're getting up, they might actually let us sleep!

I started the day, completely sleep deprived. I had a nasty headache, too. I took my shower and …

Headache day

I've got a nasty headache today, and I have to go to bed soon. This won't be long.

In spite of the headache, I was very productive at work today. I really, really, need the junk food we're getting tomorrow so I can really stock the machines right.

God's put it in my head recently to hand out the Bibles to the other passengers on my Metrolift rides. I've been doing that, and everyone loves them. I'm glad He lets me do that.

If it were me, I would only give them to the people I deemed "right". But I'm not the one doing it, God is. I hand them out to everyone He leads me to (now, I was a bit stubborn). I think He's pretty pleased with me as a result.

I've been busy but it's not all bad

Monday I got stung by a wasp, and had major conflict with my husband. Tuesday, my lone day off. I had fun and handed out my Bibles. Today we had to work so I could get paid before everyone else did.

The bank was very quiet today, so was the Walmart. Worth working; even though it was up at 5 and on my feet until 2. We went to Sam's Club. I found a delightful "Cold bag" I bought with my own money. I got chips, candy bars, and granola bars for my guys. Due to an unfortunate Metrolift screwup, I had barely half an hour at work. The new stuff pretty much went unstocked. I was fortunate to be able to repair a theft issue - placing a coil protector on the offending coil so they can't steal anymore.

I get aggravated; they are able-bodied, and make on average about $30K a year. We are both disabled, and I make $7K a year. That's right - I make a quarter what they do. I have heard some bizarre statements about how we are rich, service every machine in the bui…

I wish Ron came with an "Unsay" button

I'm glad I modified my Blogger name when the LCF thing went poof. I still don't get how they could keep slapping me, because I consoled the mother of a Bipolar child with my tale of "I was a basket case, and I'm fine now." How could it ever be inappropriate? Anyway, I'm glad I fixed it so people could find me. Here, I can blog about my life without worrying.

I had my Day Out, for a few hours at least. I broke my routine, though. I always do shower, prayer and Bible study time, eat, pills. Yesterday, Ron wanted to talk during my prayer time. I ended up doing my Bible Study and prayer time later than usual, and eating while I did it. Then I took my shower, and completely forgot my pills.

I once got a nasty and judgemental attitude over a friend. He had epilepsy. One day he had an argument with his girlfriend, and took his medication late. I said some very unkind things, to Ron, about irresponsibility. I was upset, I was depressed. I had a lot goin…

"Talking'

I slept great last night, it was awesome. I have asked God for a little more emotional support recently, and the cat's been unusually affectionate. I slept very well, the only dream I had was one about a pot roast. My hand didn't bother me at all, and I had it under my pillow, supporting my head. I started my cycle, without too much pain. Cool. I got some painkillers down first thing.

Then Ron realized I was awake. "We need to talk". Oh, no. Can I go play with a wasp nest instead? It was very, very long, mostly him complaining about how "unfairly" God has treated him and how he's so angry at Him as a result. Then, the little attacking comments like "I don't see how you can love Him."

My favorite was when he kept using the word "Stupid" to refer to me. "I get angry when you get stupid." Can we use another word? No, because that would be me controlling him, and he won't be controlled. I heard the word s…

How do I do it?

By now you know, I have brain damage, I have bipolar disorder, I have a verbally and emotionally abusive husband. I'm a caregiver for said husband. We don't have much money. Now he says he wants me out of his life, even if it means going into a nursing home (it won't but if he continues to reject me I expect he may end up in a group home, or one of the hellhole "independent living" apartments).

I have a lot of stress in my life! How have I managed to keep from absolutely LOSING it? Trust me, it would be easy! If I allow myself, even when things are good in my marriage I can be CONSUMED by worry. I can have a hard time getting thoughts out of my head, it's like an annoying barnacle or leech.

How does a woman with a history of suicidal depressions keep from taking the final leap (pun intended)? Why am I beating the keys on my keyboard with a wasp-stung hand, desperate to tell you how?

Jesus. Let me tell you, I thought the depression was bad when I was …

Physical vs. Mental

It's interesting. I'm hurting emotionally; I'm hurting physically.

The physical pain was "my" fault. I reached into something in the backyard without looking, and got stung by that nasty-looking wasp (see photo below). Not that one, but a friend! It hurt a pretty good amount. I would describe it as stabbing and firey at first. As the hand began to swell, it morphed into crushing, grinding, and good old stabbing again. Right now, it hurts at about a 2-3 on a 1-10 scale, not bad enough, in my opinion, to warrant an over the counter pain medication. It's a stabbing, crushing kind of thing.

I would love to think that my hideous history of migraines has raised my pain tolerance. I would love to think all that pain wasn't "wasted". Maybe it's true. I did feel able to cook and do a whole sinkful of dishes. I use hot! water too. Not just hot; hot!

It's a sad realization that the physical pain is far "easier" than the emo…