Well I fell for it again. One of my friends told me about the site where she met her husband and I got all misty eyed and gushy inside and said awwwwwwwwwwwwwwww I gotta try it! So I post a pic & write fifteen words or so and I start getting matches! Well whaddya know they all look like motorcycle murderers! I swear to Jeezy this shit ain’t for me! Now every time I get a match, instead of thinking “Hey! Maybe this is The One!” I am thinking “What the hell does HE want?” and I’m just SURE he’s up to no good and he does NOT see me for who I really am! I think I might need to go back to just being friends with guys who in meet in the real life…and see where it goes from there. This paranoia thing is a beeyatch! Sweet & Sour Bipolar Over & Out!
At my work, I’d managed to stay in the same job without getting fired for almost five years! A new record. I wasn’t so in love with my job, though. Instant Segue: I’ve never really liked working and have managed a few breaks from work in my life and those times when I could just be creative have been the happiest times of my life. I really wish to the bottom of my heart that I could figure out a way to not work at all, just live the free life where I could stay home or go to a studio or have a studio in my home where I go to be creative every day. That would be Heaven for me.
So, back to my job, one paragraph later. Sorry, I was overtaken by my passion for the creative life. The thing that was really burning me up about my job was that my boss had submitted me for a promotion, and those higher up than him had turned it down. They gave some concrete suggestions as to what I could do to qualify for the promotion and suggested that he resubmit the papers again in six months. So, that’s exactly what we did. I followed their suggestions to become stronger in my job performance, my boss documented this and then resubmitted after six months. Again, we were turned down, and with an absolutely nonsensical explanation.
Now have I told you that I can come to a boil at times? That I am a true Ragin’ Cajun? Times like, when I am being bullshitted? Well, yes. This was one of those times. When all my power is taken away. When I have done everything according to the verbal agreement, and come to collect on the debt, and those in power suddenly change the rules and say, no, now THIS is what you have to do! En-rages me. So, I did the only logical thing. I packed up my desk and left my job that very day. No notice, no. Because my only power was to say FUCK YOU by leaving them in the biggest of lurches. Ah, yes. Impulsivity. I did the thing that everyone wants to do, but doesn’t, because it’s unwise. Well I fucking did it! And that’s what you call….Wiseitivity.
Finally…a name for what I am missing in what my life!! This is what I beat up on myself about ALL THE TIME!! I do not have good EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONING. And I’m practically a damn executive!! Let’s face it, my shit don’t match.
At age 30 I hit a Bipolar Addict’s Nirvana: I was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder and prescribed..wait for it…Dexedrine!! Yes I became one of Dexy’s Midnight Runners! And oh Siouxsie did that fix my life for a few years! I could go all day AND all night!! In between worrying about dying of a heart attack, I was getting a lot of shit done!! STILL I was impulsive and spending money like it was the LAW but shit I was making loads of it! And I was so HAPPY on that damn Dexedrine that I couldn’t give two shits about much in life! I was skinny! I was semi-rich! I drove a hot red sportscar! Hell, even I was hot! This lasted for about four years. And then the abuse began.
The pills the doctor prescribed weren’t enough. So I began shopping for and buying pills over the Internet. And believe me, shit was getting expensive! So with my cagey criminal mind, I began seeing more doctors, and getting MORE prescriptions for MORE ADD medications. Yeahhh that’s the smart solution! And with more and more speed in my system, more and more uncontrollable compulsive behavior popped up. The worse was the picking at my skin.
My face was covered with blemishes. Something had blasted my liver to hell, probably a month’s worth of Cylert (now off the market due to its toxicity to the liver) taken within two weeks. My liver enzymes were so high, I had what’s called Chemical Hepatitis. My skin on my back, chest, neck and face was in a state of eruption. It looked like the worst case of acne you’d ever seen, on a thirty four year old woman. I couldn’t stand to be in public at all and have people see my face. I just wanted to hide. I also had extreme fatigue, and would sleep through entire weekends, only waking occasionally to go to the bathroom and drink some water. It was a lonely, and alarming experience. I wondered if I was dying.
Eventually my liver rallied and said “Wake up, bitch!”, and I complied and made my way back to life. I had Kaiser insurance (or whatever you call that shit) so I had to wait FOUR MONTHS to see a dermatologist to get a measly Flagyl prescription for my skin, which cleared it up in no time flat.
On my thirty fifth birthday I had what for me has been the most devastating event of my life. I was on a houseboat at Lake Powell in Utah to celebrate my birthday with my boyfriend and some other friends. On the morning of my birthday, my boyfriend woke up on the wrong side of the bed after having a few too many the night before. He began verbally abusing me, saying unbelievably mean things to me. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing, on the morning of my birthday, coming out of the mouth of a man who proclaimed to love me! What started as verbal abuse escalated to physical abuse. It was a surreal experience to see this man who I had loved so much and shared so much with, come at me like a boxer, with his arms up, hands clenched into fists, and then start punching me. He punched me in the face and I’ll never forget the sound I made, an exclamation of such hurt and horror that this terrible pain was being inflicted upon me from someone that I had loved and trusted completely.
Just to clear up the inevitable question and answer session to come: It happened once. The physical violence. It happened once, I went home and put out all of his belongings, and that was the end. Forever.
It literally rocked me to the foundation of my being to have this deep violence commited against me. It wasn’t just the physical violence, but the psychic violence, the murder of love and trust and feelings of safety in my body and in my world. This lead to a very long and extended period of mourning and isolation, which further contributed to deep depression, further abuse of amphetamines, and a return to drinking alcohol after fifteen years of sobriety. Things were headed straight downhill for me.
Thank You, Broken Light Photography Collective!!
I have such a hard time being in the moment when it’s winter. I don’t like winter! I’m a Spring & Summer gal, having grown up in the semi-arid desert of the San Joaquin Valley of California. But, living in reality, in the now, I live in Boulder, Colorado, and we have winter! Today we are having one hell of a blizzard. I am experiencing it in all its glory. So I bring you….Snowy Buddha! I am enjoying watching the blowing, blustery snow outside my windows as I sit inside my cozy warm house, grateful for a hot, spicy, hearty breakfast, and the hot coffee whose delicious aroma nearly brought me to my knees this morning, it smelled so good! Sometimes life is just so acute, so real, so THERE, it can be so satisfying! I am grateful. I will have a good, quiet, putzing day at home, absolutely no reason to leave the house, nothing I must do but only what brings me pleasure. And no I don’t mean masturbation. Ok well maybe later!
The road to being diagnosed as Bipolar 2 (now I don’t make that distinction, I just say Bipolar) was a long, rocky and painful one. For me it started in college. My greatest struggle has always been around impulse control, and the biggest painpoint has been money. Money, you bitch! But I love you, money. There. There’s my relationship with money in a nutshell.
I had ZERO control over how I spent my money. As a very young child, I took that ten cents and spent it all! And then I ate the candy in one fell swoop. In Elementary School, I spent that two dollars a week as soon as I got it and then tried to borrow more from my sisters. In High School, I babysat for money, which, can you guess? I spent almost before it was in my hands. In college, when I got my student loan money, it was just a spending binge until it was over. And then, always, remorse.
In college I went on my first antidepressant. It was a tricyclic, desipramine. I went to the doctor with the complaint that I was falling asleep in class, hard, like with dreams! ( I also was known to let out a honk or two when I really got snoozing. This was not my sexiest co-ed moment). Nobody at that time was diagnosing sleep apnea, which I had then and would have intense sleep attacks where I had to fall asleep immediately, no matter where I was. So, not asking the right questions, the doctor diagnosed me as depressed. Here, have a drug, he said. I said ok. I loved drugs!
So I went on my merry way with my new drug. About a year later, I developed the theory that I had Bipolar. THIS was the reason I couldn’t control my spending, which was getting worse and worse. I was having manic episodes! I didn’t know that “lack of impulse control” also fell under the classification of Bipolar, and that was my real problem.
In addition to the impulsive spending on shopping trips, I also was doing something else that was highly stimulation-seeking and impulsive on those same shopping trips: Shoplifting. It was always just one thing here and there, and I thought I was smart. Oftentimes I’d take it in plain sight, as if I was just forgetting to pay for it. I figured, who is going to accuse this white, upper middle class woman of taking anything? I know now that I was stupid, and lucky.
Eventually I was causing myself so much pain with my spending that I went back to the college’s student health center and saw a psychiatrist and conveyed my concerns and my suspicions that I was Bipolar. I must be really smart because the psychiatrist agreed and broke me off a prescription for Lithium, The Headache Giver. I started taking the Lithium and not only did it have zero impact on my impulsivity, it caused about a two-week-long headache. So, I quit the Lithium, thinking that was it for me and Bipolar. If only I knew…
Ohhhh I said I wouldn’t do it! And I’m doing it. Just a little!! So…I’m grateful for a family birthday celebration for February birthdays (two siblings have February birthdays) and a Cajun feast to look forward to. Did I tell you I come from a long line of Ragin’ Cajuns? Why yes, yes I do. That fiery blood is the cause of all of my bad behavior. HA!
So I have red beans in the pot, oh yes! I am going to rock some Red Beans & Rice. Wish you were here to sample it. You might fall in love with me. That good. Are bipolars grandiose? No, not at all.
People of the world! Have a great day! And a fabulous weekend! This is my wish for you.
I think I’ve been on a bit of a negativity binge. Everything that happens at my job pisses me off. Everything that happens there proves me right. See?? This place IS dysfunctional!! Ok for sure the place does work people into the ground. But! They gave me a job and they give me an awfully nice paycheck every two weeks. If I don’t like it I can quit, right? Oh lawdy jeez methinks I might need to remove the shit-colored glasses… and just when I was really gettin’ cookin!
My first clue as I sat at my desk today looking out my precious window (where I can watch a juvenile hawk come and dive-bomb the little birds) was that I tried to think of what to be grateful for, and then I said, “No.” Uh, Hello! Time for an attitude adjustment my friend!
In my 20’s when I had a bad boyfriend who crashed his car into my car, on purpose, and was so scary that I had to go stay in a safehouse, and then caused me to be evicted from my home, my best friend made me call her every day and tell her ten things I was grateful for. My life was in the shitter on Shit Street in Shitsville and I had to come up with ten things to be grateful for! Well let me tell ya, I think it got me through. So, if it worked then, it’ll work now.
I’m not going to torture you with my self-absorbed and very probably stupid list, (who knows, I might say I’m grateful for my teeth, or my boobs) but I will say that I shall make a list every day for the next week, and then check back in.
And that’s it! From the Sweet & Sour Chronicles, feelin’ a little sour but willing to let that change.
It’s snowing today and the high should be in the 20’s. I’m sorry but this shit is getting OLD! I just had to post a pic of spring flowers from last year’s garden . . . maybe if we all visualize really hard, we can bring that early spring that the otherwise useless Punxsutawney Phil predicted. Whatcha think? DOWN WITH WINTER!! ON TO SPRING!! What a natural mood elevator. I need it now!
So worth the read!!!
What is it that happens some mornings? Nothing has changed, but my heart is full of gratitude, and I’m thanking Lawd Jeezy for all I have in the plus side of my column. Granted, I still don’t love my job, but the plus is that the job has become the small part of my life, and the rest of my life overshadows it. I have my writing, which is lighting me up and making me shiny and new. I have an upcoming trip to Florida to soak up some sun. I have strong, close bonds with family and pretty much monthly birthday celebrations to look forward to (with six kids in our family, brothers and sisters in law, and eight nieces and nephews, we have a rich birthday celebration schedule). I have a trip to look forward to this summer that fulfills some of my life dreams. Life is…Good? YES! Don’t be scared, little one. It’s ok to be happy! Right now in this moment, this is happy. Not manic, just quiet contentment and thankfulness. I am going to try to carry this in my heart throughout the day. Sweet! Hope you all have a great day.
I am somewhat obsessed with National Public Radio’s Three Minute Fiction contest, perhaps because I entered it this time. They are posting some of the entries on their website. So far, I think these three are outstanding.
I still hope that I can miraculously win. Please Lordy Jeez.
That’s me on the right, with Mr. Magnet Man (great idea!), doin’ The Hard Smile. That’s when you stick your teeth out for all you’re worth. At a certain age in childhood that’s what kids do when told to “Say Cheese.” They literally say cheese and stick their teeth out with all their might. They think that’s what smiling is.
These days I still employ my hard smile and stick those white chiclets out. The hard smile is a way of saying I’m ok when I’m not. It’s a way of saying “Yeah, I’m getting’ along! Everything is fine!” The important thing to know is when to employ the hard smile, and when to set it aside and do some truth-telling. Because the hard smile, and “being fine”, is seductive. It’s employed on Facebook all the time Let’s face it. The world runs on lies. “How are you?” we ask. “I’m fine, how are you?” we answer. What a load of shit! Oops, sorry. It’s that truth seeping out again.
Here, on WordPress with my fellow Bipolars, I am able to put the hard smile aside. I let my face droop a little and say, “Hi! I’m a fuckin’ mess!” And ya know what? I don’t hear an echo. And for that, I am grateful. I hear love and support and kindness reflected back. Thank you.
So…one of my fave bitches asked me to post five of my favorite bipolar blogs. This is such a great idea, I’d like to ask ALL OF YOU to do the same, and post a link here in the comments to YOUR blog posting so we can go and look and see all kinds of new blogs that we’ve been missing! I looooove reading the blogs but I do get in a rut of just going to the Reader and looking at blogs tagged “Bipolar”. So creative and intuitive I know. I’d love to compare lists! Here are mine, in no particular order . . . oh by the way…Happy VD People!!!
Broken Light: A Photo Collective (includes other mental illnesses, be flexible)
P.S. — I just realized I’m trying to start a chain letter! I totally bust myself!!!!! Oh well let’s still do it!! Ok ready set go! First one there gets a tuna san!