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Showing posts from October, 2011

It doesn't matter

I'm not depressed today, praise God, so I feel pretty confident exploring an ugly subject.  I feel like I'm an explorer, constantly looking under rocks and logs, as I explore my own mind.

I have mentioned them before, the people next door.  As near as I can tell, they have a couple of young (20-ish) men, an old man, two girls, a young woman, an older woman (about my age) and her live-in-boyfriend.  All living in a 4 bedroom.  It must get pretty crowded, they only have 2 full baths.  They have at least 4 cars.

A fifth, in fact, was recently "totaled".  It looks like it ran into a pole, the whole front end is wrapped around an invisible point of impact.  It stayed in the driveway for a month or two, then left.  So, we have gray truck, green truck, gray SUV, and the blue van.  The driveway is large enough to park all the vehicles.

The blue van is driven by one of the young men.  I don't like him, he came to my house one day asking about a letter left on his van, …

The plants will like it

I'm listening to "War of the Minds" by Flame.  It's a great song.

Happily, I think I'm in a "manic" phase - which these days is very low key.  I feel a little happier than "not depressed".  I have more interest in things, and more energy.  And, that's it.  These days.

Yeah, it's not as "fun" as some of my old manias - my favorite was the time I was out in the yard, I dug a 4x4x3 foot deep garden bed in just a couple of hours!  [laugh]  I do try, if I get a "good" one, to "point" it at some, useful, project.

However, the goal, I guess, is not having them at all.  The curse of bipolar: it's so fun to be up, so addictive... and so dangerous.  [shrug]  No one wants depression, no one.  The manias are the danger.

So, I got a fair amount done:  I figured out a heating problem.  I hate being cold in the morning when I get out of bed.  I don't want to run the heater all night.  Ron doesn't want a l…

It did for me

It's been interesting, getting used to my "new" computer (reconditioned, Mom's former computer), operating system, and applications.  So far I have to say I have yet to figure out the video blogs, I may fire up the old one for that.  I made one on this the other day, but had problems with the upload (very slow long upload, it would have taken, literally, almost a day).

On other fronts, I am always praying for everyone - that includes you.  I have a list of prayer requests I pray for myself, and one I pray for Ron.  Happily, I am seeing some answers.

I remind myself, when things are harsh, that harsh times keep my eyes on God.  Let me tell you, nothing focuses my faith like a crisis.  I don't want crisis.  I want, a nice boring life.  I want to know what kind of day I'll have, three months in advance.

I believe God uses crisis, in my life, to get my eyes off "whatever" and get them back on Him.  When things are so bad or hopeless only He can help;…
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Meteor photo.

Working on concepts for the volcano, and the rapture one.  Something along the lines of Jesus pulling someone out of a wheelchair.

Orange Jellyfish

So, lest you think I'm being eaten alive by past traumas, I'll tell you about my day.

It's true, though.  I do have some post-traumatic issues from the accident.  One day I was in really bad shape, I was back in that ICU waiting room, it was horrible, even with Ron beside me.  I FINALLY figured out the warehouse club had started using a "new" hand soap.  The same soap used by the ICU - I had to scrub, and glove up,  every time I went in to see Ron.  The scent is unmistakable.

Now, I can remind myself "The soap will trigger bad memories", but sometimes, like today, it gets shoved in my face and I can't avoid it.  Doc says one of my medications is also used for PTSD, so I'm covered.

Anyway, I didn't sleep well.  Finally got up and skipped my God Time (He waited).  Ate, went to work.  No headache thank God.

I figured out I had forgotten to put my lithium in the AM part of my pill organizer.  Explains why I've had such a tough week!  Toda…

"Ron Update"

This one will be brutal.

I'm going to give a little background, and then talk about the worst day of my life.  Hop in my time machine, we're going back to 2003.

Ron and I had been managing two businesses, a deli and the vending.  The deli was open nights, and all the vending deliveries came during the day; which meant Ron and I worked a lot of 16 hour days with no overtime.  I remember, Christmas 2002 was fantastic because I actually got 2 days off in a row.

We had a hard time finding "quality" help (translated - people who understood food safety and wouldn't steal or give away the store), so I worked a swing shift in the deli, in addition to helping Ron with deposits and vending business every morning.

Ron walked to work every morning, a little under 2 miles.  He always crossed the same street.  It's a busy street, but he crossed safely, every day, for almost 2 years.  Prior to that, he had always walked to work for 30 years, including crossing other, bu…

It was Him

Well, Allen, I had plenty of time to play with some concepts while I waited for my video blog to load.  The video blog didn't work, I don't know why.  Still getting used to new OS and applications.

I got some concepts down for the meteor and volcano.  When I get them painted, I'll put up some photos.

Slept in today, woke up with a DREADFUL headache.  I never got rid of it.  I took some execdrin and got some nasty hot flashes... having one right now.

I KNOW I feel terrible when I don't even finish my soda.  And I didn't eat anything weird!  It's really frustrating.

OK, physically feel terrible, mood - really irritable depression, hopeless, frustrated.  Just not a good day.  About the only good thing I could say, Ron gave me $20 and the cat slept on his little bed, next to mine.  It's nice to see Bubba all cozy on "his" bed (which is actually a storage box).

Agh.  My head is really killing me.

Ron's been in a pretty dark mood, himself.  No…

Mixed episodes suck!

Today, not a good day for the mood.

1.  I didn't get enough sleep.
2.  I chose to watch "Walking Dead" rather than do my God Time when I did get up.  {snort}
3.  I kept obsessing (it's called ruminating) about the whole circus last night.  I was really, really, upset.

I finally made a deliberate decision to let it go.  I kept telling myself "It doesn't matter".  When the kids started up tonight, kicking the ball into the fence "It doesn't matter".

I also thought it would have been a little weird to get upset about kids, when I'm bagging up Halloween Candy with scripture booklets and a Jesus activity book.  [laugh]

I try to look at it a couple of ways, and I won't look great as I say it:
1.  I do SUCH GOOD work for God, the Devil has to attack me with mood problems, pretty annoyances, etc... just to ruin my witness and take my eyes off God.  Yes.  I know how that sounds.

2.  I remind myself that I have a serious illness: I wa…

You only need one.

In some regards, I've had a good weekend.  I got to rest, got my supplies for work, got my supplies for home.  Here come the kids again, coming in my yard... "I lost my ball".

Ron made a joke about outlawing all balls, on his planet and I like it.

I did my cooking, cleaned up the front room (boy, it is easy for clutter to breed), and have stayed on top of both laundry, and dishes.  Yay.

On the other hand, I'm just really tired... battling depression, irritable, and feeling kind of persecuted.  Logically, I know I have a good life; I have an illness, and I will get better.  I know I just need to hang in there.

But I get so tired of fighting.  I just want to react normally to things, without the whole lens of mental illness.  I don't want to care so much when strange people are walking on my property.  I want to sleep, without all the drama of things that might or might not be there.  It gets OLD.

I feel I've complained a lot recently, but I remind myself …

"They do it to trick you"

Some days, are just strange for me.

A little background, I am not a fan of strange children in my yard.  My aunt says boys, in particular, just have trouble with rough play and the concept of a property line.

So, I find it a bit disturbing that the kids on one side of my house have literally torn a piece of siding off the house - playing rough with their soccer ball.  I think they tried to kick the ball, missed, and got the siding instead.  I find it a bit disturbing that they just walk into my yard whenever they lose a ball.

The way I was raised, you NEVER went into a neighbor's yard without express permission from your parent, AND the neighbor, every time you went in the yard.  [shrug]  If I broke the rule I'd get spanked, lectured, and chores.

Ron and I got pretty tired of strange kids coming into the yard because "I lost my ball".  We tried telling them they had to ask us to get the ball, which turned into a sick game of "fetch" with one child peste…

It was real, last night

Well, I slept pretty well last night, with just the one "tablet".  I heard some music, yes, but I also heard it getting very loud as it came down our street, and Ron muttering "If you can't build it, you don't get to use it".  Clearly, "real".

I woke up pretty groggy - I usually do.  I skipped my morning God Time (caught up later), took my shower, and went to the warehouse store.  Ron and I got the supplies I needed, including more Driver Candy.  I handed out tons of stuff.

We came home, and went to Starbucks.  We had our coffee (well, I had a steamed milk), and read our books for a bit.  Came home, I was really tired, took a nap.

I slept for quite a while, woke up, and did some housework.  I also caught up with God and hung out for a while.  Read some more of my book; it's a good one.

Now, I just need to work on fixing up the front room, call Mom and Dad, and get ready for the grocery store tomorrow.

The fifth pillow

In some regards, I have a hard time being nice to myself.  I battle low-self-esteem and feelings of unworthiness.  I don't think I deserve good things in my life.

I'm working on that, a balance between martyrdom, self-respect, and selfishness.  It's an interesting road.

For instance, I love a lot of pillows in my bed.  Nothing makes me feel spoiled like a nice fluffy nest of pillows.  Most of the pillows are several years old, and cost me less than $10 each.  I like the ones with the polyester puff, kind of like down but without the allergies.  I can fluff them up and adjust them, without bothering my allergies.

I've mentioned before, I like to stack 3 of them, pyramid-style, for my head.  I also like to have a pillow to one side when I sleep on my side.  I can throw my leg over it.

One, recent, night, I was lying in bed, tossing and turning, trying to sleep.  I flipped from one side to the other and noted I only had a pillow on one side.

I rolled over on my back …

The Normals don't sleep any better

I really dislike talking about the "psychotic" parts of my illness.  I don't want to have it, I don't want to think about it, and God knows I sure don't want to write about it.

And yet, many nights, I lie in bed, hearing noises that might or might not be there.  Ron is about 50% deaf, so it can be pretty useless to ask him.  I can't exactly go bang on a neighbor's door, "Excuse me, do you hear a muted banging noise?"  Sometimes it sounds like a car, with the loud boom-boom speakers, a ways off... and maybe it is, maybe it isn't.

This morning, when I opened the door, the "noise" went away.  Same with a few nights ago.  So, then I'm faced with Doc's advice to "take another antipsychotic".

I go into whining mode; I don't want to to take an antipsychotic.  I don't want to NEED one, much less TWO.  I want to go to bed and sleep every night like the "normal" people do.

And then I got on a message b…

Time to recharge

I really detest drama in my own life; so, if I've written a blog or two that appears "dark", and I'm doing better, I'll say so.

So, I'm doing better.  I took my depression protocol medication, along with an OTC painkiller for the headache.  Pretty soon I started feeling better.

Ron woke up and we had a good talk.  We went to sleep, and I slept great.  Thank God.  I didn't even wake up with my usual "overslept" headache.  I hadn't really gotten an ideal night of sleep in at least a couple of days, so happily I caught up, I think.

And, we have today off.  I can catch up on laundry, etc, and just relax.  Tomorrow is not a hard or a long day, either.

Good.  I can use a little time to recharge.

Days like that

I get tired of it; being sick.  I want to have a life without battling a parasitic mood.  I want to have a nice visit, untainted by depression.  Well, I wasn't depressed when my parents were around, but let me tell you, before and after weren't much of a treat.

Even tonight, I battle depression, and a headache.  Can't I just savor happy memories?  No.  So, I thought, I'd look up my blogs from the last time they came to visit, only to discover I barely mentioned it.

And that made me sad again.  I get so tired, so weary.  I took my protocol medication, and some caffeine free headache pills.  Either I'll sleep great tonight, or horribly.  I'm not sure.

Right now I just want to wail about the injustice; lying in bed wondering if what I hear is real.  The battle to sleep, some nights.  I remind myself that latter happens to everyone.  Many, many, people get depressed.  I'm not foolish enough to assume I'm alone.

Unlike many people, I know what I have, an…

"Make a good day of it"

So, lying in bed, unable to sleep, I had begged God to take my lack of sleep and mental problems, and make a good day out it anyway.  He did.

I got Ron's wheelchair (turns out we didn't need it), loaded, put our bags in the trunk, and headed off to my house.  I got my spare glasses, and we were off.  I forgot my nightgown.

Mom got some cute photos of Mr Bubba cat.  He required some cat treats.

So, off we went, to Galveston... sort of.  First, Dad had broken HIS reading glasses.  We went by my favorite dollar store and got a new pair.  Mom also needed a few items.  We went to a craft store, and got her some lovely yarn.

Lunchtime!  They don't have a  Cracker Barrel in CA, so we went to our local.  We all had a delicious meal.  I think my parents found it cute to hear the waitress fuss over Ron's "neglect".

Off to Starbucks, and now Galveston.  The mid-afternoon traffic was pretty easy.  We got to the hotel and found ourselves on the second floor.  "G…

And notify...

It didn't get off to a good start.

Sure, Mom and Dad had come to visit.  Sure, we planned to go to Galveston.  Sure, I was even getting a new-to-me computer.

Sure enough, the depression hit; weeks long before the visit.  Ever tried to clean and organize a home while depressed?  Agh.  My glasses broke in June, then again last week, and then again on Monday.  Time for some new glasses!

So, Sunday, we all had a big family lunch, great to see everyone.  I got hammered with a horrible depression, so bad I had to take an antidepressant at night.  As a result, I slept horribly and had a few minor auditory "problems".

I lay in bed, hating the vague music that may or may not have existed, and begged God to please help me have a good time regardless.  To paraphrase an old story "Please take this and make a good day out of it tomorrow".

Monday, I had broken glasses and couldn't see a thing.

In fact, at work, someone tried to put a bill into all the vending machi…

Whining

Mom and Dad are coming to visit, so I've been cleaning up.  I'm glad I only have carpet in a couple of rooms; tile is a lot easier to manage. 

Hard when I have a low energy level; Doc will be thrilled I'm not really getting manic, but it is a bit frustrating.  It's, like, tired or tired + depressed.  But then God sent me an episode of Law & Order, a psychotic guy off his meds killed a nice lady.  I don't want that to be me.  So, I swallow my handful of "sick-making" pills

One beautiful thing about my blog; I can come here and whimper.  I can whine, snivel and moan.  And you read about it and maybe think "Thank God I don't have that problem"  maybe you think about your own medication; or maybe you get a better understanding on why a loved one ISN'T taking their pills. 

Because I've noticed, loved ones HATE to hear about the side effects.  They empathize, but they're also a little scared.   Scared I will get tired and maybe s…

Why not take advantage?

I didn't sleep well.  Too much caffeine, had me lying in bed listening to that noise.  Kind of vague, bassy thumps.  Ron says it sounds like something, I think it sounds like something else.  I can't really say too much because it could be identifying information.  AGH.  Bad people suck. 

I wish I could just TALK without wondering if the information could send some creep to my house. 

Anyway, didn't sleep well.  The noise kept waking me up.  Ron slept OK. 

We might go investigating later tonight, him in the wheelchair, if needed.  I love having the wheelchair for just that.  It is very odd, the noise goes from about 10 PM to 6 AM. 

I remind myself, we pay about the going rate for a one-bedroom in a mariginal area, to own a 3 bedroom home.  We have a decent yard, well over 1000 square feet.  We have a garage.  So, if we have a trade off, we do. 

I think it is safe to say we used to live near the airport for 3 years.  I'd hear the jets screaming in so loud Ron and I…

Doing alright

Here's a great little prayer from the Bible:
Proverbs 30:8-9

New King James Version (NKJV)
8 Remove falsehood and lies far from me;
Give me neither poverty nor riches—
Feed me with the food allotted to me;
9 Lest I be full and deny You,
And say, “Who is the LORD?”
Or lest I be poor and steal,
And profane the name of my God.

I try to live that.  Some issues, Ron has asked me to keep quiet, so I will.  I'm not much on obedience but I'll respect his wishes.  God always provides. 

Today was interesting.  I had two broken pairs of glasses.  Not fun. 

One pair had a break right in the nose, separating it into two halves.  The second had a corroded arm, and it was catching in my hair and pulling it - it was also about to fall off. 

Yes, I wear things until they wear out.  I could see, but not for long. 

I raided my small emergency fund and put one pair in a case, for transport (wore the others - I should mention I have to wear my glasses at all times).  Ron made a trip…

This one's for you, Mom

I had a very fortunate experience when I was about 11 years old.  I had been formally diagnosed with "clinical depression".  I knew I felt terrible, and I needed information on how to deal with the illness. 

My adoptive mother stepped in.  She explained clinical "for no apparent reason" vs. traditional depression "If your father died".  She told me again and again, it wasn't my fault, I had a medical condition.  As my illness progressed, the manias came, and I battled the hallucinations I didn't even admit to myself, those words sustained me. 

I had a dreadful thought tonight, all the people out in the world, battling some flavor of mental illness feeling they are somehow to blame.  It's not your fault. 

You have a medical condition, just like I do.  Whenever I hear that someone's suicidal, I always tell them "You need to go to an emergency room or call 911".  I'm happy to do it; suicidal depression is a massive emergency.…

I like toads

[Shudder]  I had a very exhausting 24 hours.  I know it's been a crazy day when I haven't even had my God Time at 8 PM. 

[sigh]  Last night, I apparently consumed one too many Diet Dr Peppers.  I got "activated" and had a hard time falling asleep.  As I lay there in bed, my heart racing, I kept hearing a vague, bassy-thump.  Like music. 

This is the infamous music I had problems with in July, too.  I lay there in bed, wound up, couldn't sleep.  Earplugs.  No, that actually made it worse. 

I heard Ron awake, and I asked him if he heard it.  He thought so, but wasn't sure.  We decided to take a walk.  Did that, and had a little disagreement about the music.  I thought it was one street over.  He thought it was south of us. 

We finally figured out it was out of the subdivision altogether.  I could still hear it back in the house, and I was pretty wound up - irritated.  My glassed broke right at the nose, so I had to get out the old, decrepit pair. 

Great.  …

It's not raining bleach!

Agh.  A fair amount of drama today; and a whole lot of gratitude. 

I got up at 5 AM to do my canning.  However, a piece had fallen off and I couldn't get it to work.  I was really upset, I adore my canner.  I was also frustrated, because I had 7 pint jars of stew, and 2 of beef stock with soup meat, and COULDN'T PROCESS! 

I turned it off, took the jars out, let them cool (everything was cooked before going into the jars), and stuck them in the fridge.  Only one DIDN'T seal. 

Ron and I had a plan to go to Walmart anyway, now I really needed to do so.  They sell pressure canners, at least mine does.  I also needed more canning jars and lids while they still have them in stock (they are seasonal). 

So, we loaded up.  It was, like, the Walmart shuttle bus.  EVERYONE on the van was going to Walmart.  2 electric wheelchairs, a walker, a cane, me, Ron and another "ambulatory".  I managed to grab the "good cart" with the seat on the back.  I popped Ron into…

Pleasing God

It is interesting how God uses events and people to motivate me. 

I have a tendency to spend time on a message board.  I could be doing other, useful things, but I read a lot, run up my post count, etc.  Maybe God wants me to re-evaluate my use of time. 

It seems, on a regular basis, I experience online frustrations.  Things I find unfair, are permitted, and things I think are unjust, promoted.  Both happened tonight.  In the second case, I am extremely angry.  Bad memories triggered by a statement, etc... I don't need to go there; and I won't. 

So, for me, I think it's time for a break. 

I always get anxious when people start praising "me".  I worry about ego, and becoming useless.  I worry I'll get so addicted to approval I won't be doing God's will. 

Recently, I HAVE had a lot of people telling me I was so wonderful... amazing, etc.  I don't really care about that; am I pleasing God?  I'll clean toilets every day of the year if that…

Steps to forgiveness.

No, I am NOT going to do some blubbery, drama-queen post about how I've been so injured, no one loves me, etc.  Ugh.  I'll make myself queasy! 

I prayed on this before I did start typing.  I have suffered.  This may be the first time you've ever read a post of mine. 

Background: Mother drank while carrying me; permanent, lifelong brain damage.  Unable to drive or hold down a "good" job. 

I have experienced: severe neglect; physical abuse (I have scars); mental abuse (I still battle with self-esteem issues), psychotic, delusional mental illness; ongoing hallucinations, many suicidal depressions; bipolar disorder; violent, physical attacks from strangers (a couple of times), sexual battery; loving someone enslaved to alcohol,  etc.  For most of my life, I have felt that I can only rely on God. 

Now that I have estabilished my "credentials"; I'd like to share what I've learned about forgiveness. 

The Bible is very clear, that we MUST forgive t…

Defiant Faith

Someone (another Christian) referred to my "defiant faith".  When I hear something like that, I like to chew on it for a while. 

I concluded, you know, they're right.  I think ANYONE would agree, regardless of their "religious" viewpoint.  I have also had "intolerant" thrown my way a few times this week, too. 

I have an annoyed Muslim asking why I shaved Ron, is there something wrong with looking like a Muslim?   To that I say, no, nothing wrong with how a Muslim man presents himself to the world.  They are always clean, tidy, and hard workers.  The clothes look a lot more comfortable than what we wear.  However, Ron looks better with a shorter beard.  Not to mention, he won't scare the customers, drivers, and my parents when they come to visit. 

I think, generally speaking (and I hope the guy finds his way over here), the "Western" norms of dress and grooming prefer a man with a short beard, if at all.  I know the everyday people we …

I'm praying for you, here's how I do it.

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Matthew 5:10

Tonight, I had a couple of people "yelling" at me. 

Why?  Because I said, without accepting Jesus' sacrifice, a person will go to hell when they die.  I also said I would pray for them.  They got upset, and one said "Oh, my friend doesn't need prayer, she's a really nice person." 

Honey, I don't care how nice you are, if you die without Jesus you are going to hell. 

I felt kind of bad; even a Facebook friend, I felt, ought to know that I am an evangelical Christian.  They ought to know I think being born-again is the only way to get to Heaven.  Since she didn't know that, I have to wonder if I "failed". 

Maybe she has so many friends she didn't notice my posts?   I hope so.  I would hate to think I wasn't a light in the darkness. 

It was pretty clear that I would probably have one less "friend" when I log on again; but that's OK.  I felt they had to hear the truth in a kindly manner.  I didn't scream abou…