Crispity, Crunchety, French-Fried Edges

I had been doing so well on blogging regularly, but the last week or so has really taken a toll.  I have been completely without two very important medications for four days one week, and then totally without any sleeping or nightmare medication for three days the following week.  Add that to a very busy schedule, and I find myself feeling a bit worse for wear as days go by.

Of course, I’m gonna come through it, and things are already looking up, but I am fried around the edges.  Social contact has become difficult — heck, I don’t even want to be around LarBear half of the time.  I just want my music and my sunlamp and for everyone to leave me the Hell alone.  I haven’t been doing much Facebook, haven’t been returning messages or emails.

This time of year is classically difficult for me.  I haven’t had a “good” winter in over fifteen years, and for the last few years have ended up in the hospital or the crisis residence shortly after the holidays.  Heck, this Spring, I even had to do ECT.  I still grasp at straws as to things that make me feel better, but sometimes it is grasping into thin air.

I have jewelry pieces I have been wanting to make for Christmas, and I have all of the supplies — I am severely lacking in the follow-through department, however.  They aren’t hard pieces, but I just look at the supplies, then out the window at the grey nastiness, then back in at the supplies, and ughhhhhh.  I cannot get any motivation going, and as Christmas approaches, the stress of not having these things done or even being worked on grows greater.

So, I’ve been doing a lot of flailing, sitting still, kicking and screaming against doing anything the last week.  I have been trying my very hardest to stay positive, to stay in wise mind, but I find myself full of negative feelings and emotion.  As much as I can, I am turning my mind away from those thoughts and feelings, but gosh durn, it’s hard sometimes!

Thanks to DBT (and almost 20 years of dealing with bipolar disorder), I have discovered a few things that work to bring me back to Earth.  I have been relying heavily on music, breathing exercises, building structure, building mastery, and routines.  Yes, I must have my routines — they may seem to be silly and frivolous to other people, but my routines are sometimes the only things that keep me going.

In addition to the medication issues over the last two weeks, I have been dealing with a LarBear who is struggling to deal with the realities of his (negative) family situation while embracing a “new” family that has traditions and celebrations out-the-wazoo.  It is overwhelming for him, and he has said as much, and has certainly acted as such.  I don’t know much to do except to just ease him through the season, but it definitely adds to the stress level.

Through the course of blogging today, I am feeling a weight lift off my shoulders, and realizing that this dang thing is more therapeutic to keep up than I had realized it still had the power to be.  If you are my dear friend, and I have mentioned a piece of jewelry for you for Christmas, know that it may be more of a New Year’s gift, and remember that I am human, and it might even turn out to be a “Happy February” gift.  Doing the best I can here, and there’s always manana, manana!

The Biggest Gift I Could Receive from Divorcing Parents

I have been doing better here lately, there is no doubt about that.  Unfortunately, over the last week or so, I have started to do things like, a) not be able to sleep or b) cry uncontrollably for hours on end, and c) deal with suicidal ideation.  The sleep has been better in the past three days and I am hoping it stays that way because that just makes it all the more difficult.

Holiday times have always been important in my immediate family.  There have always been big lunches and dinners and the tallest Christmas tree that can be found and cookie baking and house decorating and prepping recipes and menus for days on end.  I mean, they were huge for us.  This year has been a stark reminder of just how upside-down life is right now.

For one thing, there is no QoB and Big Dawg.  They won’t even talk to each other, nevertheless see each other.  I mean, I guess I should have seen this coming, but they absolutely hate each other, if the words they say are true.  Words that I am pretty sure I don’t want to listen to but end up hearing all the (fucking) time anyway.

I don’t think they understand how devastating that is, to your child, to disparage your soon-to-be ex-husband or ex-wife in front of said child.  No matter that this child is 33 years old and Ab is 32.  There was all this drama in the beginning and then they were both adamant that I be kept out of it.

It is slowly creeping back in.  I understand (not really) that they can’t stand each other, but they both need to keep the shitty remarks, comments, insults, etc out of my face.  And its not one doing it more than the other, although Mom is trying harder not to do it around me.  But as with anything, you inadvertently get either of them on a roll, and it’s all downhill (for me) from there.  No one wants to bash their mom or their dad.  If the parents want to, then they need to call a friend or find a therapist.  Actually, they could both use a therapist at this point, and that is me being generous, because they both really needed one long ago.

So what am I to do?  Well, the correct answer should be — support your parents while they are going through this hard time.  And you know, I can still in a lot of ways, but in some ways I can’t.  At different times, they are so upset that they can’t even be in the same room with me, nevertheless talk with me or even text over the phone.  Ok then, there goes two major supporters.  The two peop;le that have been there for me all my fucking life, now as if they have disappeared off the face of the Earth at times.

And that’s not to say they don’t try, because they do.  But they are both in such a bad place, both so unhappy, angry, anxious, stressed, heartbroken that they aren’t always able to be there and I really do get that.

Frankly, I can’t handle this level of stress in my life.  Even when they keep it to themselves, which is definitely not all the time, I am just barely making it.  I am letting household duties fall by the wayside, I am not practicing my DBT skills well or often enough, and all I want to do is distract, distract, distract.  In fact, I have pretty much distracted since August of this year, right before my birthday, when things really started getting ugly.

So, no, I don’t want my parents to get back together.  I want them to TRY to heal instead of being stubborn and thinking they can do everything on their own.  I want them to take the advice they would give me in the same situation.  I want there to be more common sense and less anger.  Maybe even a bit of being polite — I do see a tiny bit of it from both parties.

But more than anything, I really don’t want to hear anymore negative speeches, from one about the other.  No more snide remarks, comments, jokes.  I am your daughter, and I deserve that much respect.

Late Night Musings with Rosa 12.20

Perhaps my favorite video of Tom Petty singing my favorite acoustic version of “Walls.”  This has been a weekend so far, of thinking.  Good things have happened, bad things have happened, and I need time to reflect.

Right now I am taking things in, because I notice that I have not been noticing life around me as I should.  I have not been being mindful and I have not been introspective.  I have been selfish with my needs and wants, yet overly helpful to those around me — often reaching out further than I really should, and perhaps what they needed me to.

This little thing called life that is going on right now, this piece of the puzzle, this particular scratch in the record — it will pass.  It must.  It must.  It must.  What lies over the horizon I can’t even begin to predict, and I know that is part of what is killing me bit by bit.  I am a planner and an organizer and I want to know what is going to happen when and with who and (sometimes) the why or how of it.

All of this uncertainty, from things as small (ha!) as what do for Christmas as to if I will still miss DSB and not want to get my heart broken again in the new year to what my nephew will be like as he grows from a baby into a toddler to if I will ever be able to lose the weight I want to lose.

And when?  And how?  And why?

It occurs to me now, as I sit typing this, how I have once again slipped into willfulness and am not letting mindfulness and patience and simple observation take me down the path I was meant to be on.  I am trying to control things that I have no control over, I am trying to change things that cannot or will not change, I am beating my head against a brick wall and wondering why I have a headache.

When I feel really bad, as I have for the last while (but not so much anymore), I tend to stop doing all of the things that make me feel better and that make me the Rosa that people like to be around.  I don’t particularly think that I am that Rosa right now to all people, but I know I am really enjoying my dad and my sister.

I fully admit that I can be hard to be around, that I can be too intense or too sad or anxious or too demanding.  Not everyone sees it that way, however; I can think of two people right off the top of my head that I intrinsically know don’t feel that way, that want my company.

But does that ever happen to you?  That important people in your life seem to want to take a break from you?  Does this mean that the love or friendship or whatever it is, is not there unconditionally?  Or does it mean that this is just people being human?  Or does it mean that you have overstepped your bounds somewhere, and this is all your fault?

I think the answers to all of this are:  “who knows” and “all you can do is improve yourself and change for the better.”  Goddess of Mindfulness has a funny idea about all of this, that she has been sharing with me since I was a teenager.  It is often the people that are messed up AND seeking help who are the most balanced, the most introspective, the most thoughtful, the most likely to change ill habits.

So here I am, “the crazy one” in a sea of “normal people” and I am by far acting the most sane.  That’s just how it is here in Topeka, Kansas.  App;arently I haven’t been drinking the water, because I don’t currently have the crazy.  But that doesn’t mean I am not actively every day seeking to improve and feel better and be more stable and independent.

The hardest thing for me to see is a person I care about suffering, who will not utilize the help that is available to them.  People have to really REALLY want to change in order to change almost every behavior or circumstance, and I am baffled when peop;le who are adamant with me that I seek help, won’t seek it themselves.  Because “that’s different.”  Well, no, it’s really not.

In closing, you do not need to be mentally ill to seek assistance and ask your friends/relations/neighbors/;pastor/anyone for help; in getting through what you need to get through.

I would like to remind that while this post is written as a general musing, it can easily be directed at many in my life.  I am purposely not calling anyone out on the rug, but I want people to think.

If you need help, ask for it.  It will almost always be given, in some form or another.  You do not have to suffer alone and in silence.

 

 

 

Evil Squirrel’s Blaze (she’s a’ caroling!)

Do please come in and meet Blaze, my Christmas prize from Evil Squirrel’s Holiday Cards in which several around the blogosphere received hand-drawn pictures of his characters.  Totally appropriate that I get Blaze, considering the pink and red of her outfit, and the fact that she is caroling whereas I sing in the shower, the car, and anywhere else I think I can get away with it.  Go check out Evil. Squirrel’s page RIGHT NOW and you will not be disappointed.  There is always something every day to make you laugh!

Blaze

Post-Christmas Laziness

I normally have kind of a hard time relaxing.  It’s not that I don’t ever sit around and twiddle my thumbs, but I always have kind of an anxious feeling when I’m doing it.  Today has been very different.  My goal for today was to do absoutely.nothing and enjoy it.  So far, I have succeeded.

Dr. Love gave me a Kindle for Christmas and I have really been enjoying it.  I spent a great part of today playing with it and doing some serious reading.  In the past, reading was something I did a lot of and really enjoyed.  The Kindle seems to be bringing me back to that and I think it would be wonderful if I could develop reading as a hobby again.  People need hobbies, or they sit around and obsess and clean…like me!

We still have two Christmas celebrations to go to.  On Thursday, we are getting together with my stepsister and her family for dinner, to see their new place, and Christmas gifts.  Then this coming weekend we are going to the middle-of-nowhere to celebrate Christmas with Dr. Love’s family.  I am looking forward to both, but am especially looking forward to Thursday because I see them so rarely.

Christmas at Mom’s yesterday was pretty great.  I ended up really tired and sick of people by the end, though, and it was everything I could do to not go screaming off into the woods.  It wasn’t anything in particular, I had just had enough of people.  I get that way sometimes, I guess.

I am thinking of making this potato soup recipe for lunches this week.  I have been craving potato soup, and now that I am eating dairy again, I see no good reason to not try it.  Speaking of eating dairy again, that must have just been all in my head, the lactose-intolerance thing.  I am eating all forms of dairy, maybe even more than before, and have had no problems whatsoever.  I do know that I have cut down on caffeine, sugar, and fat, so maybe the problem was within that trio.  Whatever the reason for it was, I am really glad to be “over it” (at least for the moment) and able to enjoy foods that I love again.

Christmas Day may officially be over, but I am still digging the music.

Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Christmas Canon Rock

Getting Back on Track

Merry Christmas to all!  I have been up since 5:00 a.m. so I could see my dear Dr. Love off to work.  I wanted to send him off with a nice breakfast, but he refuses to put anything in his body besides Mountain Dew until at least 8:00.  Guess that means more eggs and toast for me!!

I appreciate the support I receive on this blog, especially from Pasha and QoB.  Very wise souls, they are.  I am receiving additional support from my SparkPeople site.  I have been very on track lately with eating and exercise and I owe a lot of that to the articles, community support, and food and exercise trackers.  I feel like I can actually DO this, LOSE this weight and get into a healthy zone again.

We went to the big city yesterday afternoon to spend time with my Dad, his wife, and my sister and her husband.  We had a really great time.  My sister made an awesome dinner of crab and mushroom soup, and cheddar biscuits.  We also had my very favorite hummus and pitas from my very favorite Middle Eastern bakery.  YUMMMM!  My sister is quite the cook and presents to us involved a variety of homemade candies, homemade peach preserves and pickled beets.  Even some homemade elderberry syrup.  My sister and her husband gave very thoughtful and creative gifts and I just hope they enjoy the gifts we are giving them as much as we will enjoy ours!

The thing I love most about Christmas is the giving.  I am really excited about all the presents we are giving everyone.  We gave my dad and his wife a water feature (fountain kit) that I think they are just going to LOVE.  They seemed really excited about it.  Kudos go to QoB and Big Dog for precillitating that one through the water garden store.  🙂

Many other lovely presents for our dear family, but I won’t be sharing any of the details until later because, well, my mom reads this blog and would just LOVE to get the scoop before it happens.  Love ya, Madre!  🙂

I am feeling really good today.  I have been getting back in my morning routine and it has made all the difference in the world.  Just in the past few days, I am sleeping better and am able to get up earlier.  I am love.love.LOVING my morning coffee and sunlamp routine.  I wish that I had found Cymbalta years ago, but am happy that I have it now.

I have grouped all of my holiday music onto a playlist on iTunes, and it is really awesome.  I didn’t realize I had such a great collection, but QoB still has a few CD’s I need to download.  Holiday music is one of the best things about Christmas.  I have been listening to it on the radio non-stop at work since about the middle of the month and anytime I am at home.  I am pretty sure, though, that I will be completely sick of it by the end of New Year’s.  That’s when Christmas will be over us, because we are going to celebrate Christmas in the middle-of-nowhere with Dr. Love’s family over New Years’ weekend.

Merry Christmas to all…I love you…and you…and you.  You know who you are!!

QoB and I like to rock it out to:

Mariah Carey, All I Want For Christmas is You