running out of Spoons

I have no Spoons.  I’m exhausted, and I have no interest in anything.

just three or so days ago, I was elated with how awesome my life was turning out.  things were really on the upswing.

and now, I’m back down at the bottom, barely able to stay above water.

I guess that’s bipolar for ya.  rapid cycling is a bitch.  not only are the ups and downs are in and of themselves, but they are fucking exhausting just as they are.  you don’t need to throw in the depression and apathy or the risky behaviour and police collisions.  just the up and down alone is enough to cause a person to fall flat on the floor and never move again.

I can’t do this Adult thing.  I’m running out of Spoons to even do this Human thing.  I really want to just curl up on the floor in a sunspot and take a nap.

my eating disorder is getting loud again.  I’m skipping meals more often, and I’m pigging out more often too.  I don’t know how best to approach the whole thing at this point.  I really think I’m going to go back to making sandwiches and keeping my life simple for a while.  I don’t have the Spoons to spare to worry about something be paleo or high in carbs or having too much sugar.  I just don’t.

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happy birthday to me

it’s here. happy birthday to me, I suppose. I survived another year of living with myself, of beating myself up and despising who I am and what I haven’t accomplished.

a friend has to postpone birthday hangouts last night. instead, a different friend came over last night and gave me a few gifts. I skipped the gym this morning. I have had a few wishes her at work; I’ve received a few texts from my Louisiana folk too. then there’s an unrelated work hangout this afternoon. in the evening, I’m going to Noodles and Company with a third friend; he will probably pay, knowing him. then tonight I’ll cry myself to sleep. Saturday, Brian will take me to dinner and to see Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat. at some point, I know I’ll get a gift from another friend who always sends something.

 

I wanted to cry when I woke up this morning. I really hoped that my gift from The-Powers-That-Be would be my not waking up finally. alas.

my sleeping issues have returned. I’m not sure what’s up with that. I mentioned to Brian about going back to a sleep specialist, and he agreed that it was a good idea.

my depression is worse, too; but that typically happens around my birthday.

I haven’t been to therapy in several months. she had a health issue that kept her out of work. she wants to meet Sep 2. I liked what work we were doing when we were actually doing it. but her constantly cancelling and rescheduling appointments was a real pain, and I had decided that I wouldn’t go back. but now, with the state I’m in, maybe I should. for now, at least. …man, I dunno.

I got a UTI last week. haven’t been back to my kickboxing since then. I know that’s not helping my mood any. I also ran out of my fibro and my axiety meds two weeks ago. so that’s taking a toll.

 

overall things should be great for me. but I’m crazy, and things are not good in my Mind.

so yeah. happy birthday to me.

medication, relationships, and disassociations

oops.  so I’ve managed to not take my morning medications almost every day this week (my most important meds are my morning ones, of course).  also, I’ve forgotten my evening meds numerous times in the last two weeks.  however, I’ve been fairly good about my mid-day meds — naturally, because those are the least important of the three.  ~sighs~

I’ve been totally exhausted lately.  like, before my screwing up the taking of my meds.  that’s actually what led to my forgetting to take them.  over the weekend, I just got really, really tired.  then Monday morning, I sleep in until I absolutely have to wake up for work, and I forget to dope myself up while I rush getting ready.  and it just happens like that every morning for the rest of the week.  today included.

Brian called me while I was on my way to work because he noticed I forgot my meds.  I’d be late if I had turned around though.  and I just also didn’t give a fuck about going back to take them.  “it’s not like they’re doing much good anyway”, half-sleepy me told myself as I steered with one knee, guzzled an energy drink with one hand, and shoved eggs into my mouth with the other hand.  (the second knee was attached to the foot reserved for the gas and brake pedals.  I have to get creative whenever I need each a hand and a foot/knee/leg for the shifting and powering the clutch.)  so I just thanked him, and kept going away from home.

I’ve been frustrated with him for a day or so now.  he did tiny thing A that is a big thing to me, and I noticed I had an emotional response about it.  I did my best not to have an emotional reaction, and I only kinda succeeded.  but then I beat myself up for having emotions at all.  I typically get very angry at myself when and because I’m angry at him.  and of course, during all this, I don’t tell him shit, because I don’t want him to start feeling bad about having peeved me off.  but he inquired this morning, and I was just like, “let’s talk about this when I’m not running late for work, okay?”

second thing I really wanted to discuss here (venting about Brian kinda snuck in here, lol) is my disassociation qualities returning.  I’m getting “that feeling” again wherein I’m not Me.  I’m multiple peoples living in a single body, so take turns sharing the physical cage.  I “see” myself doing and saying things.  I’m over-analyzing my actions in a very particular way — not so much “objective” as it is disjointed and disconnected.

maybe it’s the lack of medication in my system.  maybe it’s the two energy drinks a day I take just to stay awake.  maybe it’s whatever started making me so tired over the weekend.

maybe it’s finally time for a Cycle change, and I’m going to go into a mania soon.  that would be a nice change of pace.  I haven’t had a proper (hypo-)mania in a while.  though I doubt it, given all the additional sleep I’ve been needing.

one thing I’m going to discuss at therapy is how I’m so Tired.  like, when she or my psychiatrist ask me about how this is going or what I feel about that, I just wanna look at them and say, “I don’t know. I’m too Tired to think about an analyze it.”  an me being too tired to analyze something — not a good sign.

I suppose that’s all for now.  I’m just really off kilter.  and because I don’t know the cause, I can’t even pretend to come up with a solution.

a2z: Identity

I spent more of yesterday than I should have trying to decide about what to write for “I”.

I was trying really hard not to be super-depressive with this post (especially since “F”, “G”, and “H” were all gloomy), but was was rather difficult.  the first few “I” words that came to mind were “incarceration”, “indecisiveness”, “ignorance”, “issues”, “injuries”, “illusions”, “inmate”, “illegal”, “insane”, and “immoral”.  I wasn’t not a fan of any of them, of course.

so then I was pondered about the good “I” words — “imagination”, “independence”, “interdependence”,  “ingenuity”, “intelligence”, “Impala”, “Illuminati”.  but yesterday, I din’t have the energy to give any of those illustrious topics (see what I did there?) the deserved justice in writing about them.  hell, I was even all geared up to do a post about my being an INTP — but I wasn’t even sure how true that was anymore.

then it hit me, and so here we go:

 

April 2015’s Blogging A to Z:
Identity

 

I’m not going into the philosophical concept of self, because that’s not with what I’m concerned.  I’m concerned about Identity of personality.

I used to have really bad insomnia (among other sleeping disorders).  I take medication now.  which means I sometimes can actually go to sleep within an hour of laying in bed; it also means that sometimes I can stay asleep for more than 45 minutes at a time.  but I also have a slight sleep phobia.  no really, I have a semi-irrational fear of sleeping.

well, I’m scared about waking, more accurately.  too often do I go to bed one person, and wake up someone else.

my bipolar, primarily when not medicated, is rapid-cycling.  which means in a set of days to even a mere few hours, my mood can drastically swing from one end of the spectrum to the other, with no obvious motivator.

in a study about the paradigms and perspective bipolar blokes had of themselves and the world, a conflict of self-identity was common:

The participants’ descriptions of themselves reflected self-definitions shaped by their mood and other aspects of their illness, leading to experiences of confusion. Mood was a defining characteristic of self with one participant describing himself in terms of different mood states.  […]  There was recognition that mood shifts lead to cognitive and behavioral changes which one participant experienced as: “Like I actually mentally change and think differently and act differently.” These different experiences of themselves resulted in a sense of confusion for the participants over who they really were. One participant described a struggle between mood and personality: “Like I actually don’t know who I am. There’s a few kind of core things, but it’s almost like my personality was grappling with my mood.”  Additionally, confusion arose for the participants in trying to differentiate themselves from their illness: “So, I’m not sure if that was the mania or if that was just me.”  [1]

I’m scared to go to sleep some nights, because I don’t know who I’ll be in the morning.  will I be James the Greatest, the loud boisterous manic lass who gets a lot of shit done?  or will I be a timid, depressive form of myself, hiding in the shadows and along the crevices of the walls hoping no one notices me so I can just disappear?  will I be bored because I’ve made no grand plans for the day ahead?  or will I be overwhelmed because I have a job and friends?

and how am I going to fuck it up?  will I be so manic that I get multiple speeding tickets and make promises I can’t keep?  or will I fail at my required tasks and get myself in line for another day of fussing at work in a week or two?

if I don’t go to sleep, it’s easier to know who I am.  I can kinda tell as I change in a given moment.  well, kinda.

maybe not.

maybe I’ll never really know who I’ll ever be.

ever…?

 

Identity

 

 

Sources:

1] Inder, ML, et al.  “‘I Actually Don’t Know Who I Am’: The Impact Of Bipolar Disorder On The Development Of Self”.  Psychiatry: Interpersonal & Biological Processes 71.2 (Jun. 1, 2008): 123-133.  CINAHL Plus with Full Text.  Web.  Apr. 22, 2015.

World Bipolar Day 2015 (…was yesterday, oops!)

as with most things, I’m somewhat late to celebrate.  yesterday was World Bipolar Day (WBD).  they self-describe the event’s intent as “bring[ing] world awareness to bipolar disorders and to eliminat[ing] social stigma”.  I wanted to do some of the events and stuff they promoted (like added words that describe something about you other than your disorder on a photo of yourself, then share it on your social networks with the appropriate hashtags), but I never managed it.  bleh.

instead, I’ll drop off some links about WPD, and do a quick questionnaire.

Why a World Bipolar Day?” from Huffington Post: “Mental illnesses have historically been misunderstood, feared and therefore stigmatized.  The stigma is due to a lack of education, mis-education, false information, ignorance, or a need to feel superior.  […]  Like most groups who are stigmatized against, there are many myths surrounding mental illness.  Enter WBD.”

World Bipolar Day 2015” from Being Beautifully Bipolar:  “Bipolar disorder has ruined a lot of good things in my life and I guess I should be resentful.  But it has also taught me about real love and forgiveness and for that I am grateful.”

Bipolar Disorder: World Bipolar Day Sets Out to Inform, Break Barriers and Stigmas Attached to Mental Illness, Organizers Say” via HNGN:  ” ‘As Martin Luther King once said, I have a dream that one day our nations will rise up and create all men equal,’ wrote Muffy Walker, [founder and president of International Bipolar Foundation].  ‘And I have a dream that my son, who has lived most of his life with bipolar disorder, will one day live in a nation where he will not be judged by his illness, but rather by the content of his character.  I believe that World Bipolar Day will help bring my dream to fruition.’ ”

World Bipolar Day, March 30, 2015” from bpnurse:  “For my part, I’m proud that people with this disorder are finally talking about it instead of hiding in a closet. Much of what our society believes about bipolar is wrong, and those of us with lived experience are the best source of information; but putting ourselves out there can still be risky for us due to discrimination in employment, loss of friendships and changes in our social status.”

 

and now, I’m snagging yet something else from the lovely blahpolar diaries: a bipolar questionnaire.

World Bipolar Day Questionnaire

1. What does “bipolar disorder” mean to you?
it’s an explanation for my inabiality to find and maintain balance or consistency.  I’ve always been an extremist in most everything.  knowing that this is not just my having less self-control or will-power, but is instead a result of mis-wiring in my brain — I can hate myself a little less.  that doesn’t get me off the hook; that doesn’t mean I don’t have to continue struggling to live appropriately.  rather, it means I better know how to find assistance in and how to approach management of this problem.

2. What was your life like before you were diagnosed with bipolar disorder?
like most who are eventually noted as bipolar, I was initially diagnosed with major (or unipolar) depression.  so I was prescribed mainly anti-depressants.  however, that only controlled one end of extremes.  I was pretty competent at hiding my more reckless behaviors from the parental units; however, I know the things I did and the risks I took, and I thought I was just fearless.  instead, it was because I was legitimately mental unstable and, in some cases, actually insane at the time.

3. How old were you when you were diagnosed?
sometime in June 2010, I think.  at least, that’s what my “Medical History” document tells me; and it has a better memory for details than I do, lol.

4. How do you manage your symptoms?
medication is my first go-to.  but I know therapy also worked in the past.  having my partner or close friends assist in monitoring me is an excellent way for me to have an external and somewhat objective interpretation of my behaviour, too.

5. What is life like for you now?
heh.  well, back when I was on medication, it was … better.  I was less manic and less depressed; my lows weren’t as low nor my highs as high, but they were still there.
currently, not being on meds — it’s getting bad.  I’m in a mixed state (watered-down details here and here).  as I’ve stated in a previous entry, this is one of the most dangerous places for a bipolar bloke or lass to be in — we’re still miserable and hopeless and depressed, but we’ve got the energy to do something about it; and because we’ve got that mania still in us, whatever we do is gonna be fucking drastic as hell.

6. Has having bipolar disorder affected your friendships, personal life, or professional life?
omg, yes.  when I’m hypomanic and not medicated, I do all kinds of sort I regret.  and I’m not even really aware of it at the time.  I, uh, I’m not really gonna share the details, because I have IRL people who read this shit.  but just know, it gets pretty fucking bad.
but even when medicated, it’s still difficult.  I make all kinds of promises and plans.  then in a few weeks or months when my depression kicks back in, I’m royally fucked — I don’t have the energy to fulfill these commitments; so I’m either disappointing someone, failing at something, or otherwise having to abandon something else more important to honor a previously made though less important agreement.

7. How do you think society treats people with a mental illness, especially bipolar disorder?
I’m honestly incredibly blessed.  when people learn that I’ve got mental disorder X (OCD, anxiety, bipolar, whatever), they often don’t believe me.  I guess that’s because I’m so damn good at pretending I’ve got all my shit together.
however, that means when I’m suffering or struggling really terribly, it’s difficult to reach out.  I’ve never really let on how bad it gets, so I scare people when I finally actually open up to them.  it’s happened several times during my life; so I now just avoid opening up at all.  (that’s why this blog is so great — you don’t like what I’m saying?, then stop fucking reading.  easy as that!)

8. Have you ever felt discriminated against or looked poorly on because of bipolar disorder?
thankfully, no.  but again, I believe that’s because I can hide my Crazies so that it seems like I “have bipolar” just as how an anal-retentive person will say he “has OCD”.

 

9. Do you have any words of advice for people in the world suffering with bipolar disorder or other mental illness?
you’re only as fucked as you let yourself be.  someone or something, somewhere, is willing to help.  sometimes it’s ass-hard to find that person or place.  but if you really do wanna get better or at least make it out okay, you just gotta look.  ::shrugs::

PSA: (hypo)manias are NOT fucking awesome

so over at Blahpolar Diaries, the author does what she calls “linkdumps”, wherein she topic vomits in no particular fashion links, articles, reviews, and other information about bipolar disorder.  it’s a real trove if you want to be more updated or informed than just about what I prattle regarding bipolar.  however, this round, she posted some that I too wanted to share.

 

first is a piece from The Guardian entitled “Let’s get this straight: bipolar is not a useful tool for productivity“.  here’s a great excerpt:

Not everyone experiences dizzying highs; the lows may not be as pronounced for some. It is a condition that varies dramatically. My bipolar presents with long, angry, solitary manic periods, in which I can churn out thousands of pages to the exclusion of all else.
Does that sound good to you? It’s not.
Think of the angriest you’ve ever been. Did it hurt – physically and emotionally leave you raw? Think of the way you feel after a long writing spurt – exhausted, physically drained, numb perhaps. Now think of those feelings drawn out over a period of months, with no end in sight. Relief comes in the form of deep depression. Some relief! To be told I should be grateful for this was stunning.

it goes on to talk about how even the generic medical and academia world, people don’t understand what the fuck bipolar is.

during my last hypomanic phase, I was easily going 115 mph down the interstate, I was sleeping with whichever friend I could, I was making all these bold promises and plans about my future, and I really truly believed I was invincible and thus did incredibly stupid things (as in, more stupid than the aforementioned).  (hypo)manias are not necessarily awesome.

moreover, it’s during the very early or very late season of a (hypo)mania that a person with bipolar is most likely to kill himself — there’s just enough sadness and despair to feel hopeless, but he has the energy to “do” something about it.

 

anyway.  the second is just a collection of celebrities’ quotes about mental illnesses.  the quote that really stood out to me was from one of those “YouTubers”, and it goes as follows:

Now, the stigma surrounding mental health isn’t surprising — at all. A mental illness generally suggests that something is wrong with the brain. Our brain is our control center. It’s responsible for everything we do, and the idea of something being wrong with the brain generally suggests that we’re out of control. And as humans we hate that idea. We hate it so much that we just don’t talk about it. We sweep it under the rug and pretend that it’s not there. But it is. Mental illnesses are a thing. They’re real, and they’re very present. And we need to talk about them.

 

so yeah.  Blahpolar Diaries is a great blog, and she shares awesome shit.  and these were ones I wanted to share too.

in the company of 411

I want a drink.
I’m triggered.
I’m Alone, with Brian right next to me.

l(a
le
af
fa
ll
s)
one
l
iness

Thursdays were always my worst for drinking.  even if I didn’t have anything to do on Saturday, I still drank more Thursday night than Friday.
because I was so Alone without being alone.

Thursday night is when Brian gets online and hangs out with his best friend.  I think it’s great that Brian actually has a best friend (Blair in Florida and DevRex, the bloke in question, in Ar-… in Ar-… fuck, in Ar-something… ::looks at snail mail list:: oh right, in Arkansas).  but I don’t like being Alone.

for those who are new to my writings, you’re alone when there are no other being (not necessarily humans, though usually so) around you.  you are Alone (or 411, as I call it sometimes) when you’re lacking Connections.  said Connections can easily be made via a phone call, a text, an email, some chats, etc.
for example, Brian and I have been sitting at each our computers in the office for over an hour now.  he was chatting with DevRex the whole time; and for a while, I was chatting with a FetLife friend.  via that Connection with my buddy, I was not Alone.  but then he got offline.  and now I’m Alone.
(Zero is still at his grandparents’ place.)

I can handle being Alone when I’m actually alone.  because then I learn how to turn it into Solitude, Serenity, Privacy.  and even so if someone else is around me and I at least a book or headphones, I’m fine then too.  I have something into which to escape.

but when it’s Brian.  when I’m here, and he’s in a world of which I’m very much not a part — I don’t like it.

and that’s not fair to him.  he should be able to have a social life without me.  please understand, that’s not what I’m asking of him.
rather, I just … I just don’t know how to not feel Alone.

my phone doesn’t work at the moment, so I can’t call or text anyone.  it’s 1am on a Thursday night, so most of my pals are asleep.  (but just in case, both of my Google account’s chats are opened, lol.)  I mean, hell, I even resorted to stopping by Facebook for a few minutes.

part of me is saying, “stupid fuck, just go to bed.”  but I’m always scared to go to bed on good days.  because especially with my bipolar and multiple personalities, I never know who I’ll wake up as tomorrow — happy or sad, Jamie or Bree, depressed or eager … or a nasty concoction of varieties.
…but more on that another day.

anyway.  I wanna drink.  I want a fucking drink so bad right now.

but I’m not gonna.  instead, I’m going to post this, take my last set of meds, and cut my loses.  if all goes according to plan, I may even be able to go to bed without crying or vomiting tonight.  (it’s always one or the other recently, and often times actually both.)

namaste, bitches.