I Have Hope For Hope

mission in life

Hope.  It comes and it goes, it fluctuates wildly over the course of every day.  Some moments, I feel downright defeated, and others I feel as if I can take on any little issue that comes my way.  Today was a day where hope varied widely over the course of the day.  What counts is that there is hope in this moment, and so I have hope for hope, hope in the future.

If I am being entirely honest with myself, and can put to side all of the niggling irritations that I sometimes let consume me, I don’t want my life to look like it does now in five years, or even five months.  There are things I want to do, to accomplish, to weave into my day-to-day routine.  I want things to be *better* and I want things to be *ok*.

If I am being completely honest, “things” ARE better than at certain moments in the past.  Quite a bit better, actually.  Sometimes I go back in time and wade through blog entries of years past, and I see that I have come a very long way in many areas.  At this moment, I can count back even a month or two or six and see what a vast distance I have traveled.  Rosa on the bipolar train, it goes around in circles, but it is altogether *better* than it ever has been, even while I can see many improvements that I want to make.

if you dont ask

I have a secret, y’all.  Someday, I want to work again, even if it’s just a little bit.  I want to work in some capacity where I am helping people, like I used to, in my former worklife.  It obviously can’t be as stressful or have as much responsibility behind it, but I itch to do something, anything that makes a difference in someone else’s life.

I feel like I come from a place where I have all of these tools I have learned, and I really think maybe they could help a person or two.  I don’t have everything figured out, but on a clear day, I have quite a bit figured out.  I don’t claim to be better than anyone else, or know more than anyone else, but I do have a unique angle, I do have a life that other people (I think) could relate to.

I’m thinking about talking with my DBT leader about someday (we’re talking months, maybe a year) being in a peer support role, where I attend DBT meetings as someone other than a client.  I have had years and years of DBT — I truly believe it is something I would be good at.

If I could teach just one person how to find willingness, man, that would be something.  I have a few blog friends who consistently over time have encouraged me to write a book.  It is only in the last month or so that I have started to take that advice seriously, and have thought, just maybe I could.  Maybe I SHOULD.

mind will believe

If I can rise over the negativity that seems to settle cloud-like around my brain nearly every day, without warning, then I think there is hope.  I think that this photo to the right is true, that your mind believes everything you tell it, and maybe I should start telling my mind that I CAN and I WILL and surround it with love.

None of this is rocket-science, and I may lose sight of everything I have written today by the time tomorrow gets here, and maybe this is all just a little bit of hypomania thrown into the mix, but things are really starting to make sense, to click, and I think the key just might be the hope I am holding out for hope.

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.

Last Reverb Prompt for 2013

Reverb13 prompt for the 21st and last day is as f0llows:

Then, without thinking too hard about it, grab a pen and some paper and finish the following five sentences:

2014 is going to be MY YEAR because…

In 2014, I am going to do…

In 2014, I am going to feel…

In 2014, I am not going to…

In December 2014, I am going to look back and say…

This is a hard list for me today, feeling rather down and un-optimistic about the future, but I’ll give ‘er a try.

2014 is going to be my year because…

I am going to try harder.  I am going to backtrack and say, hey, maybe I do need a little bit more therapy to get through to this nastiness I carry around in my brain and body but ignore.  I am going to push through discomfort and take better care of my body…bathe more, loofah where needed, lotion, you know, better self-care.  I am going to try harder to practice self-compassion, giving myself a break, even when I might not feel like I deserve it.

In 2014, I am going to do

whatever it takes to stay quit smoking.  I have worked at this really hard in 2013 and I am not going to let it slide with the new year.  I have so many obstacles around me.  People get panicky and jealous and hateful when you do something like this for yourself.  I’ve had my fill of that.  I am doing this for me and my health, so I can be around for my Kizzer pup until the cows come home.

In 2014, I am going to feel…

like I belong inside my body and my brain.  Changes are a’coming, I hope.  I can’t go on much longer with the status quo.

In 2014, I am not going to

be a doormat, take it when someone yells or criticizes me, allow myself to continue with relationships that break my heart.  Either the relationship changes, or I go.

In December 2014, I am going to look back and say…

I sure got more accomplished than I thought I would.

Clear as Mud

I have been wanting to post since Wednesday and have even started a couple times, only to become disgusted with myself for the drivel that was pouring out of my fingertips, ending up banishing those whiny, self-important posts to the drafts bin.  I must do that a lot, because my drafts bin is super-full.

For the past few days, I have been very foggy, somewhat irritable, and a bit on the anxious side.  I can’t seem to get my thoughts together and it seems like my brain is swimming in a thick mud that I can’t see or maneuver through, but the mud is also very loud, like television static, constantly.  I’m smoking more and I’m thirstier than usual.  I’m not sleeping well, waking up in regular one-hour intervals all night, no matter how early or late I get to bed.

I think most of the problems I am having are related to not getting enough quality, restful sleep; however, why am I not getting quality, restful sleep?  I’m really not sure.  I am taking all medications as prescribed, avoiding caffeine, keeping to an evening routine, and so on, ad nauseum.  I just can’t sleep well for some reason.

I had been kicking ass on so many levels up until a couple of days ago.  I got my house clean, was making homemade meals, baked a chocolate cake from scratch, had a productive therapy session.  I was feeling good.  Since late Tuesday, though, my brain has been mired in the muck.

My kitchen is trashed out again.  Ok, it’s not that bad, but I’ve been out of dishsoap since Wednesday morning and haven’t been able to dishes since, because I am apparently too lazy to get to the store and get some.  I did make another home-cooked meal last night, though, so maybe I’m not giving myself enough credit.

I thought hindsight was supposed to be 20/20.  I find that is not the case for me, as far as charting out my feelings, emotions, thoughts, symptoms, successes, failures, etc. goes.  When I started this post, I had in my head that the last three days of my life have been a complete fail.  If I pick it apart, however, I’m doing pretty well, considering I’m not feeling the greatest mentally.  I’m coping, I guess you could say.

My mom has always said that I am my worst critic.  God forbid I don’t do my dishes daily — I’m a lazy loser.  I mean, I have had some great accomplishments over the last week, dammit!  How is it possible to lose sight of that so quickly?  Just because I’m feeling poorly overall, doesn’t mean I’m doing a poor job at living life.  My brain can be clear as mud and I can still function, even over-function, it appears.

If I had any wish today, it would be that I could learn to not see myself as a failure in all things, no matter what.  That I could keep my eyes on the prize, instead of concluding everything is a disaster, based on a FEELING.

So, Rose, stop catastrophizing, stop over-generalizing.  It’s gonna be ok.  Even if your brain is full of mud and you’re not sleeping, does not mean your life is an epic fail.  Promise.


Because it’s Hard

The past 24 hours have been a complete roller-coaster.  I started out yesterday morning feeling somewhat optimistic about the day, was fairly productive, then irritability and annoyance crept in that was so intense I couldn’t control my behavior.  I ended up leaving the house so I wouldn’t take it out on my sweet boyfriend, and was able to calm down a little.

Then, it was back home and then out and about with Dad.  I felt numb, detached.  Either the meds or the mania are making me feel almost high.  Everything is so vivid, my senses are painfully alive, and it’s almost like I’m having an out-of-body experience.  I don’t remember much of what was said, but I do remember getting home and being really upset.  I know that wasn’t Dad’s fault, that there wasn’t anything he did or said, it just was.

QoB came over after she was done at the shop, as she has been doing regularly since I started feeling bad (one of the few things that makes me feel better and sane).  She explained a few things to dear, sweet boyfriend that hopefully made sense to him and as to why sometimes I act the way I act.  God, I am so worried that he will leave me.  He says he won’t, but this is so much to handle.

After that, dear sweet boyfriend made a fire and lit the grill.  We had pork chops, asparagus, and baked potatoes.  Very good.  We then watched a movie and went to bed.  That part of the evening was good.  I went to bed feeling satisfied and somewhat at peace.

Now I’ve been up for an hour and I can’t stop crying.  I fucking hate this.  All over the place.  I feel sad and anxious and racing.  I feel angry and the most intense self-hatred.  I need to get off my ass and take a Klonopin, but it’s almost like I feel like I deserve to feel like this.  I need to get my shit together before dear sweet boyfriend gets out of bed.

I am unsure of my plans for the day.  I know that we are going to drop off the two dog rescues this morning and pick up my CPAP supplies.  Maybe we can do some driving around or go out to the lake.  I need to feel better.  I need to feel more in control of my emotions.  I practice and practice my DBT skills but they do not always give me relief.  I wish there was some quick and easy fix but I know there is not.

I really miss my sister and it makes me cry to think that I have disappointed her by taking this turn in my life, although I know deep in my head that she is not disappointed.  I really want her acceptance and, although I know I have it, it feels like I am not worthy of it.

I just miss everyone in general.  I still see QoB, dear sweet boyfriend, Big Dog, Dad but everyone else is missing.  If I could be doing anything right now, it would be making pancakes with my sister, tucked away safe in her house in the big city, where no one knows my problems.

I just want some semblance of normalcy, whatever that might be.  I want to not go from crying to angry to crying to overly happy (elevated) to depressed and back again.  I want to feel stable for longer than two hours and I not feel like I am a burden on the people around me.

I can’t stand being around myself, so I don’t understand how anyone else can stand to be around me.  So I worry that they will leave.  I worry that dear sweet boyfriend will head out and never come back.  I worry that I will alienate my friends and I will never hear from them.  I know QoB and Big Dog will always be there, but I worry they will get so tired.

I’m sick to death of feeling this way.  I don’t feel like I deserve the love of anyone, from my dog to dear sweet boyfriend to family.  Sometimes this just hurts so much, its unbearable.  I’m not getting ready to end my life or anything like that, but if I didn’t have the support system that I do, I’d have been dead long ago.

On that note, here I am, trying to stay alive, to make it through.  To be ok.  To not even be ok, but just to be.

Even though it doesn’t always feel this way, this is dear sweet boyfriend talking to me:

Eli Young Band, Crazy Girl



I’m on my last day of my five-day weekend and it has been oh-so-glorious.  I think I really needed this break.  I was having a hard time getting to work for the past few weeks and was on major burn-out.  I think part of that is the negativity that seems to abound within the office I work in.  My supervisor went on a week-long cruise last week and here’s hoping that she is in a much better place than she was when she left.  But, maybe not.  She’s kinda crazy and perpetually cranky.  And don’t forget…negative!  It doesn’t get much better around my other co-workers, either.  All the talk of budget cuts and programs changing has everyone on edge.  For the most part, I have not been worrying too much about my own job, because there is really nothing I can do except to do the best I can and hope the department realizes that my program is vital to reducing recidivism.  Fingers crossed.

Church was kind of disappointing this week.  We had a visiting pastor and his sermon was terrible.  He started it off by saying that Memorial Day is not really for those who have given their lives to our country and the ones still fighting.  Ummm, what??!?!?!?  He launched into a long-winded and very boring sermon about how Memorial Day should really be for celebrating those that have passed who have strengthened the church community and to the “saints.”  Um, hello?  The saints?  Maybe the pastor didn’t realize that he was in a Disciples of Christ church, and thought he had been beamed into a Catholic church.  I don’t know, it just wasn’t a very good sermon and he was not a great speaker, like the pastor we have now is.  Let’s not mention that he preached for almost 45 minutes, whereas the entire service generally lasts only that long.  Ahhh well, here’s hoping our new pastor that starts in September will be as good as the pastor that has been covering for him for the past however-many months.  I will be sad to see our current interim pastor go, but I think he has his own home church and his parishioners probably miss him very much.

So Kizzie has been very itchy lately.  Her belly is red, and she has spots on her legs and tail that are really roughed up.  She is constantly licking and itching and I just know it is allergy season for her again.  This happens every spring around this time, and I am trying to get her in to get an allergy shot tomorrow.  Birdie is getting spayed on Wednesday, and I will be dropping her off after work tomorrow, so it would be nice if I could just take Kizz in then and get the shot, considering the vet is a pretty long haul away from my house.  We all know that gas isn’t getting significantly cheaper, that’s for sure.

I have spent a lot of time socializing these past few days.  To tell the truth, I am a little peopled-out.  I am looking forward to having this day of cleaning and laundry, actually.  It amazes me that I am able to socialize so much, considering many years of isolating myself, and periods even recently when I can’t stand to be around people.  Of course, as I say in every post, the Cymbalta helps greatly with the depression that keeps me cooped up in my house, and I think that I have grown a great deal over the past few years as far as overcoming social phobias.  People can still really bug me sometimes, but more often than not, I am seeking out the company of others.  It’s strange sometimes, but I think that getting out and about has been really good for me over this past week.  It has been nice to have real conversations that don’t revolve around work.  Bottom-line, just happy to have been away from work.

Happy Memorial Day to all…I know that I have several people in my heart today and always.  God Bless America.

Proud to Be an American, Lee Greenwood