A Few Tidbits and The About Page

I’m gonna pull a well-known blogger trick, when not feeling like you can coherently put information into paragraphs, and do a list post.  I apologize in advance if you are not a fan.

1) Today was Day Two back at work and things are going great.  When I went in on Tuesday, I was quite dismayed that the front end of the store looked like a tornado  had gone through it.  This is what happens when there is no one there to do the admin/clerical side of the job.

I didn’t get a lot accomplished on Tuesday, but after today, with the exception of some filing, everything is straightened up, put in it’s place and the other employees were even voicing their appreciation.  It’s nice to be loved.  :)

2) Green Embers totally revamped his “About” page today.  I was both jealous and inspired and encouraged, so I added a “100 Things About Me” page, almost on a dare.  It is nowhere near as pretty as his is, but I think you’ll find it entertaining.

3) I am starting to get back into a schedule and it is soooo nice to feel like things are somewhat predictable again.  I can feel my mental health evening out, the sadness somewhat leaving, the loneliness fading.  That’s after two days.

4) I’ll admit, today was a really good day.  Besides work, I had a nice chat with someone I care a lot about and was able to talk about some things that I don’t often have the ability to.  I just felt like we really connected and it was a good feeling.

So go check out those “About” pages…they’re a little on the long side, so I’m going to keep it short here.

Those are my tidbits…anything cool happen to you today?

Is it Weird, or Is it Cuckoo?

Mental Mama’s Seven Weeks of Weird has left me baffled.  The first three (weird foods you eat, weird things people don’t know about you, weirdest thing you do to relax) were all somewhat challenging, but do-able.  As I’ve said before, I didn’t consider myself a very weird person, but I guess I do have my quirks and once I got to writing, it became apparent that I am a little on the cuck0o, if not weird side.  I’m leaning more heavily toward cuckoo…maybe I just don’t like the word weird.  Semantics, semantics!

Last week saw me in a downturn, so I didn’t get around to Weird Wednesday.   I’m gonna double-book this post and do last week’s and this week’s all in one.  I’ll try and keep this from turning into a 1500 word essay on why Rosa is weird/cuckoo.  (I know, Bradley, 600 words, 600 words).  :D

Last week’s topic challenged me to describe the weirdest routine or habit I have.  I don’t think the routine in itself is weird, but it’s how closely I stick to it that might be a bit cuckoo.  Now, throwing the last six weeks out the window, I keep a very strict sleep/wake cycle.  I have a morning routine and I have a bedtime routine.  I’m talking more than just brushing your teeth and washing your face.  Certain things are scheduled at certain times and I get slightly distressed if I get off schedule.

It all kicks off when I take my evening meds at 8:00P and ends when I lay down in bed with my Kindle at 9:00P.  I “allow” myself to read for an hour, at which point I must try and sleep.  In the morning, I rise at a certain time, drink caffeine of some sort, and sort through the Internet until it’s time to get ready for work or do whatever else it is I’m doing that day.  I do this every day, and if I don’t, my mood gets seriously thrown off.  Schedule and consistency are key to managing bipolar disorder.  At least for me.

This week’s topic questioned the writer what the weirdest thing they collect would be.  I thought about this for awhile, as I don’t collect figurines of any sort or belly button lint.  Then, as I reached for my water, I realized — I collect oversized plastic cups.  Yup.  That is a little weird, isn’t it?  My current favorites are 32 oz double-wall-insulated faux Solo cups.  They are AMAZING.  They will keep a drink cold from the fridge without ice for hours.  They’re a perfect size so you’re not always getting up and refilling.  They might just be the perfect cup.

I also have a slew of glasses, and that was at the request of DSB, wh0 couldn’t stand to drink out of plastic.  I need to make room for some new plastic cups Mom found for me, and I am seriously thinking about boxing up all the glasses and giving them away.  Or at least putting them out in the garage.  I have little use for a real glass.  They never get clean in the dishwasher, and they break.

So, what’s cuckoo or weird about you?  It’s not too late to sign up over at Mama’s!

Building Rome: Get Happy

Green Embers’ Building Rome theme this week could not have come at a better time.  This week’s theme is:

SETBACKS ARE NOT ROADBLOCKS!

And yes, I really did feel it was that important that I screamed that at you.  Sorry for any ringing eardrums.  :)

So, anyone who reads this blog knows I’ve had some major “setbacks” lately and have even blogged about the incredible sadness and loneliness I have been feeling, that have been created by said roadblocks.

After some discussion with the ever-so-wise QoB, my unhappiness problem can be eased by three things, which are going to be this week’s goals:

1) Get out of the house at least once a day.   Even if it’s just to sit out on the back patio or get in the mini-pool or drive down to BP and put gas in the car.  I think this goal is particularly important because it causes one to have to shower and dress, which are altogether motivating in themselves, which leads me to my next goal.

2) No matter what I am doing that day, be dressed, showered, and ready to walk out the door at a moment’s notice by 11:00AM.  I mean, this probably sounds pretty easy to most people, but it just isn’t for me.  Not when I’m feeling bad.  But what I do know from experience is that it DOES work.  Doing all of that gets you motivated to do more stuff, and doing that stuff motivates you to do even more.

3) Stop isolating.  Now.  This could probably go along with number one, but is really is distinctively different.  People are seeking out my company, and I am sometimes saying “no,” all the while whining that I am so lonely.  I do have opportunities to get out, but I am not going because I feel like I’m not good company, because I worry what to talk about, I worry what people are going to think of me.  I just worry.  I have let this problem overcome me before, and I literally turned into a hermit.  Not happening again.

My Do-or-Die Goals:

1) Take care of all  Kizzie’s needs, including play with Kizzie every day for at least 30 minutes.   It amazes me how much happier and relaxed Kizzie is now that Rascal is gone.  She definitely is loving having more time with me and I am (I think) doing a good job at taking care of her.  We have been playing a lot and she’s back to sleeping in the middle of the bed.  :)

2) Hygiene/Self-Care.  Satisfactory.

3) Take all medications as prescribed.  I sucked.  I’m working on it now.  That is all.

4) Eat healthfully.  Still on a very carb/protein diet.  Not sure that’s quite healthy, but it’s the only thing that keeps my tummy happy.

 

Last Week’s Goals:

1) Continuing to read two hours every day.  Doing it and LOVING it!

2) Ask some friends for feedback about lack of blogging.  Asked, answered, and advice put into effect.

3) Start reducing cigarettes smoked in an attempt to quit which will be upcoming.  Day One was today and I did not meet my exact goal, but I did pretty darn good.  Hopefully Day Two will be easier.

Sanity, Apparently, Is Fleeting

Once more it’s the up and down, the crash and bang of my mood smacking into the ceiling and then hurtling down into the basement.  In a matter of hours, minutes sometimes.  Too much emotional reactivity to things that probably don’t really matter, but seem SO important in the moment.

I am telling myself that this all has to do with being sick and isolated and off my game and away from work.  Because, I am NOT going to the hospital again, not now.  Someone, perhaps my therapist or maybe my sister, told me that extended illness could really mess with your mood.  Well, here is living proof.

Like a fool, I have been dredging up these memories of DSB.  You see, he was an ass, but I DO have some good memories of our time together.  And with those memories at the forefront, it’s hard to keep in mind all of the negative.  And it makes me think — where did our love go wrong?  Was it me and all my craziness?  Did I need too much, ask for too much?  Did he love me the most he possibly could and it just wasn’t enough?  Was he just that limited?  But more importantly — I think it was my fault.  It could have been, right?  I could  have made it work if I CHANGED him more.  How ridiculous, right?  Sadness will do that to you, make you think that way.

You see, I’m calling this sadness, and not depression, because the two are entirely different.  I’m still functioning — I just feel really crappy off and on.  I had a very nice evening yesterday with Mom and the Big Dawg.  I even ate some real food — steak and a baked potato.  It doesn’t get more real than that, right?  That should make me HAPPY, right?  It did, for a little while.

And then I got home and it was just me and the pup and I started to think about how excited Rascal would always be when you came home and how DSB was always, always waiting in the office with some trashy TV on to hear how it all went.  There isn’t anyone to tell how it all went when I get home now.  There isn’t anyone to kiss me goodnight or to nag at me to take meds or encourage me to get to bed.  The last voice I hear of the day now is Mom’s, or Dad’s, several hours before I go to bed, and while I know they love me dearly, it’s just not the same.

I got up in the middle of the night last night, and have on several other nights here lately, and was surprised that the light wasn’t on in the office.  Like I expected him to be there.  Why would I expect that or even want that?  I think this must be all  part of the grieving process, that I can’t believe I’m STILL going through.  If I look at it, though, it’s only been a little over two months that he’s been gone.

So is this normal?  Is this grief for DSB and a longing for someone to just be there?  Or is this madness brought on by all the medical problems I’ve had the last six weeks, not including the mental health issues toward the first part of that?  Maybe it’s both.  Whatever it is, I hate it.  Fucking hate it.  Half the time I feel like I’ve got it together and the other half I’m just falling apart.

Sadness Moving On

After my visit with the Great Uncle G yesterday, I really felt like I could get back on top of things.  I even went out in the evening and had dinner with mom and the Big Dawg.  I had a good time, the food was excellent, the company even better.  I came home, did a little Internet chatting, watched two episodes of “Scandal” and then went to bed.  At that point, I was still feeling very positive.

I had a good night’s sleep last night so I woke up thinking today would be pretty good.  I came out to my computer, where I always go to wake up.  Drank a glass of water, took morning meds, petted the Kizz Wizz.  Nothing out of the ordinary.  I checked my email, no big surprises there.  I checked my comments from yesterday and also checked on responses to posts I commented on yesterday.  It was an ordinary morning, just like any morning.  I could have been getting ready to go to work for as fine as I felt.

And then I opened FB.  Right there on my home feed, was a very large photo of my old English teacher from middle school, along with words underneath indicating her life accomplishments.  Because, well, she had died.

You know, I knew that yesterday and I pretty much blocked it out.  I was feeling too good to let it get to me, but today, vulnerable from just waking up, it was too much.  I scanned more of FB and it was just more drama, more hate, more kids sick with cancer, soldiers wounded in action and suffering, people hurting other people.  Why do people post shit like that?  What does it really accomplish?

So I shut FB off.  I was kinda trying to hang around to catch a friend of mine, but I couldn’t take it anymore.  I just hung my head and cried.  Cried like a big baby, because the world isn’t fair, people aren’t fair OR nice, and there is a website that just wraps all of that up into one package and drops it on your doorstep.  What is the fucking point of that?

And then a song comes on my Pandora that takes me back to that time in middle school, when I was a student of the teacher who had passed away.  She was an English teacher.  She was so patient with me.  She believed in me, praised me for my writing.  More tears.  Just hanging my head and crying.

I guess it’s going to be a crying kind of day, because I cried while I looked at pictures of my nephew, cried when I think back to the screwed up DSB situation, cried when I thought about how I haven’t been a very good therapy participant because I haven’t sent diary cards in two days, cried because my medication was wrong for so long, just cried, cried, cried.

My instinct is to go back to bed, try and start this day over.  Before all of this silly and random crying started, I had things I wanted to do today.  Things I need to do today.  And I do still need to do those things.  And I really am ok.  Just overly emotional today.

Tears don’t mean something is broken.  Tears are just sadness and sometimes joy, spilling over.  You don’t need to worry that I am crying or that today hasn’t been a very good day so far.  This is just another day in the life of the Rosa, and, as always, it does get better.

tears

A Reminder to Put Pants on Every Morning

I have a very dear Uncle, Uncle G, and it is only through medical miracles and (perhaps) prayers sent around the world that he is here with us today.  He is the Big Dawg’s brother, and they share red curly hair, freckles, and a love for the outdoors

Perhaps roughly two years ago, Uncle G was in the midst of getting a divorce.  It was a good thing for him, truly was.  One weekend morning, he hopped on his motorcycle and sped away to the local grocery store, because he was having people over and he was out of toilet  paper.  While on his journey, he was sideswiped by a truck.  He was life-flighted to KU Med, which is where anyone goes when anything really serious happens, in Kansas City, about an hour away.

We didn’t know for quite awhile if Uncle G was going to make it, and then when it became clear that he WAS going to live, we were very unsure that we would get back the same Uncle G that had been literally scraped off the road just weeks before.

My sister, a physical therapist, living in the same town, went and spent time with Uncle G nearly every day.  She read his medical reports, kept family updated, and just spent time with Uncle G.  She was a true blessing for him and for family, for us, to keep us updated.

Time went on and there were many different complications.  More surgeries, more IV’s, more antibiotics.  The guy couldn’t catch a break.  Even after leaving the hospital, he had to be rehospitalized at least once, that I know of.

But little by little, Uncle G was coming back.  And he did it with the most positive attitude I have ever seen in a person, and I mean ever.  Prior to his accident, he was always extremely positive and seemed like a happy person.  This accident didn’t take it away from him.

Today I was home alone, feeling bad for myself, having slept half my day away because I was up half the night, thinking I might as well just go back to bed instead of facing the intolerable loneliness I often feel these days.  Angry at myself for screwing up my psych meds for far too long, angry that the doctors just can’t figure out what is wrong, angry that I still don’t feel good.  Just angry.  Lonely and angry.

And then my favorite Uncle G called.  He wanted to stop by and visit.  He’d be here in five minutes.  The depressed part of  my brain screamed out, “Nooooo!  Your house is a mess and your hair isn’t washed.  Just put him off!”  So, that’s what I did.  Immediately after hanging up the phone, I had a revelation.  Uncle G would SO understand what I am going through.  So, I called him back and asked him to, yes, please come over.

Walking through the house, it really isn’t all that messy.  The kitchen is clean, and other than Avon products strewn across my dining room table, isn’t even cluttered.  I was only worried then about the fact that my now-short hair couldn’t go into a ponytail, but I found a headband and it actually looks rather cute.  To give myself a little burst, I gave myself one squirt of body splash and felt almost immediately better.

I put on jeans.  Better still.  One of my favorite tops.  Even better.  My feet still won’t fit into my shoes, but I jammed a pair of flip flops on and decided that would work.  All of this took less than five minutes.  I timed it.

And then Uncle G came and all was well, all was fine.   We had a really nice conversation and we talked about how it is to be sick for long periods of time and what we can do to make ourselves feel better.  I told him that just changing my clothes was motivating enough that I was going to run out and do a few errands.

So, a phone call and an uncle made my day today.  What’s making yours?

 

Building Rome: Shoot it to Me Straight

It’s Green Embers’ Building Rome time and I have thought and thought about what I wanted to post, being that I am not yet back up to full 100% Rosa awesomeness.  I think for me this week is going to be a bit of a repeat with a twist.  Originality just isn’t in the cards today, looks like.

Last week, I worked on the following things:

1)  Set aside one to two hours to read everyday (two if I am not working that day).  I did always set the time aside, although I didn’t always spend it reading.  I did read an average of two hours per day, though, so I’m going to say this goal was accomplished.

2) Go back to work or somehow be more involved with the shop.  This is not going to happen until I feel better, can stay awake all day, can handle interacting with customers and stressful situations.  Not quite there yet, but almost.

3) Start driving again.  Yay!  I did start driving again and it felt good, although kind of scary.  Especially kinda scary the times I did it without wearing shoes (that’s another long story).  I think though, as long as I have shoes, I’m good, so, goal accomplished!

 

My Do-or-Die Goals:

1) Take care of all  Kizzie’s needs, including play with Kizzie every day for at least 30 minutes.   This went so well that we usually went over the 30 minutes if  you count up all the 15 minute intervals during the day.  She is as happy as a pup ever was.

2) Hygiene/Self-Care.  Satisfactory.

3) Take all medications as prescribed.  I am having a really hard time remembering to take my morning meds, a terrible time remembering to take my morning, evening, and bedtime Zyprexa, and did goof around with a few of my physical health medications as well.  This was not a winner this week.  I do have a plan and it involves getting my mediset filled up and setting more timers.

4) Eat healthfully.  This is kind of put out of commission with me being sick.  I am getting really good at making Ramen in the microwave, and I’m doing a good job pushing fluids, so there’s something.

 

This coming week’s goals:

1) Continuing to read two hours every day.  This was really helpful for me in calming my brain down and relaxing me.  And I have some killer books to read right now!

2) Ask some friends for feedback about lack of blogging.  And of course, feel free to add  your two cents in the comments.  I am having a really hard time blogging regularly, coming up with topics, and even responding to prompts.  I do want to write, I feel pressed to write, but I just can’t come up with it.  Any advice?

3) Start reducing cigarettes smoked in an attempt to quit which will be upcoming.  “Nuff said about that one.