Still Plodding Along . . .

I’m sad to say there was nothing outstanding about this week.  Sometimes in life you just have to plod along and do the things, and that’s what I’ve been doing.  I’ve been taking my medications, including my increased dose of Wellbutrin, and I do feel a little better, but circumstances in my life (joblessness, financial strain) are keeping me somewhat down.  I’ve been exercising like a good little Bipolar patient, even when everything inside me screams “NOOOOOOO” which is most of the time.  I’ve even been cooking for myself, which is a new one.  I’m trying to eat better and lose this extra weight I’m carrying around, and I installed the Lose It! app on my phone.  See Dyane Harwood’s post here to read all about Lose It! and how you can join the fight if you’d like 🙂  The basic premise of Lose It! is to track your daily food intake and exercise activity as you work towards your weight loss goals.  For me, it’s good to have a concrete weight loss goal, and it’s also good to do something concrete to work towards losing the weight.  <———–Did I just say the same thing twice?    Also, there’s all sorts of hidden calories that I need to be aware of, like the *^%$#%^& creamer in my coffee!!  It’s loaded!!!  It’s almost the whole allotment of breakfast calories!!!  So, good to know.  I haven’t decided yet if I’m going to give up creamer.  Maybe after I finish the two bottles in my fridge 😀

I think I applied for ten jobs this week, two in IT Security and eight in Desktop Support (Booooooo!).  But, I have to live in reality, and in this reality, I need a job, like, now.  So I might have to work in Desktop Support and just suck up my negative feelings.  In the meantime I am writing positive affirmations about claiming my fulltime permanent job in IT Security.  Like I said, I am trying to do all the things I can to move forward.  It’s hard as hell when you put all this stuff out there, and the damn phone doesn’t ring.  Hopefully, something is going on behind the scenes that I can’t see.  If something doesn’t happen soon, I think I will have a full-out tantrum.  Or a heart attack.  Oh Lordy.  I just hope I have something positively delicious to report next week.  Until then, I will keep plodding along . . .

Trust The Process

I am sitting in front of my therapy light, looking out the window at the somewhat gloomy day and wondering how I’m going to get through this winter, this jobless spell, this life in general.  This may be the depression talking, but I seem to have the same struggles over & over.  Maybe that’s the human condition.  Dammit I would like to rise above certain things for once and for all.  Maybe that’s just not possible with Bipolar Disorder.  Maybe I have to be patient with myself and not judge my struggles.

I called this post “Trust The Process” because I know there are things I need to do when I am depressed.  Sitting in front of this therapy light is one of them.  Getting exercise is another.  Making connections with people who care about me is essential, no matter how bad I want to isolate myself.  Making appointments with my doctor and my therapist are an absolute requirement.  Staying off drugs (pot) and alcohol is essential.  This is the process.  I don’t have to love it.  I just have to do it.

Now that I’ve written it down for all to see, I’m accountable to more than just me.  I’m accountable to you.  Expect to see more posts from me with reports of positive action.

Please share with me your thoughts, coping skills, and news of your life.  Thank you for being a part of my life!!!  Peaches!

The Painful Side of Being Bipolar

Well this is so painful to say, but I BOMBED my Security job interview.  I mean, atom-bombed it.  I froze.  I forgot words mid-sentence.  I felt like a fraud, like I was full of shit.  I think I came across that way.  I attribute this to brain fog, which I attribute to an increased dose of Topamax, also known as Dope-a-Max,  which Dr. Drugs increased to stabilize my mood.  My unstable finances and this job search have thrown me into turmoil.   Before this, I had a relatively nice long stretch of stability and some happiness with life.  But, unstable finances are enough to drive me to drink, if not to suicidal ideation, and not wanting a job, combined with needing a job, makes me quite crazy.

It makes me sad to have done so poorly in my interview.  I got up at 5am to prepare, and I really tried my best.  I feel betrayed by my brain.  After the interview, I was in so much mental and emotional pain, it was hard to be with myself.  I wanted to drink, I wanted to drug, but I just had a seltzer (my “drink”) and tried to be kind to myself.  Sometimes life is just painful.  I wrote an appropriate, heartfelt thank you letter for the interview and let it go.

I got a call yesterday about another Security job, this one much closer to home, and PART-TIME!!!  I had a pre-qualifying phone interview, which I passed, and I’m waiting to hear if there will be an in-person interview.  They asked what I wanted in terms of pay, and I don’t know if the numbers I named were too high but dammit it’s a Security job and I want to be paid appropriately!  So, we will see.

I have an interview for a damned Desktop Support job on Tuesday, I will go reluctantly.  I just have to keep walking through this job search with some measure of willingness.

I’m glad it’s the weekend, I need a little break from life!!  Hope you are all well.  Peach out, BPOF!

FEAR

Does FEAR stand for Fuck Everything And Run, or False Evidence Appearing Real?  Right now I want to Fuck Everything And Run.  I am in fear because of this damn job search and the state of my finances.  I am afraid that I am burning out my family because of my constant NEED.  I am afraid that I won’t be able to work a full-time job.  I am just a ball of FEAR.  I got quite suicidal a couple of hours ago, but imagining my family getting the news was enough to bring me back from the edge and set my ass over to the computer to apply for some jobs.  Then I became fearful again.  Jesus!  What is going to become of me??  I know I was in this horrible place before I took the CEH test, and then I passed it.  Sometimes it’s darkest right before dawn.  I know.  Well, it’s dark right now.  I hate that my mood can plummet to the depths of despair and I want to kill myself.  I wish I had more faith in life.  It’s just this damn fear taking over.  I don’t know what to tell myself.

If this were someone else’s blog I’m sure I’d comment and ask if they contacted their therapist or their doctor.  And the answer to that is No.  Because I don’t want to go into the hospital.  I think that would be a giant step backwards and would just stress me out more.  I think I need to ride this out and work through it and keep applying for jobs.  Hope that doesn’t sound like bullshit but that’s what I truly believe.

Feel The Fear And Do It Anyway!

Well my fellow Bipolareans, it’s that time.  Put up or shut up.  I’ve been studying for this computer security test for two months now.  I’ve shown myself that I can be wayyyyy more diligent than I ever thought I could be at this point in my life.  I have seen a side of myself that I didn’t know was there – an ability to study and learn and be consistent and intense!  WHO IS THIS PERSON AND WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH BIPOLAR ON FIRE?!?!  The journey has been trying, but it has also been a joy.  The journey has shown me that I can rise above my label and rise above my illness.  Alas, I have to tell you the truth, I am scared shitless to take this test next week.  I believe I am ready, but what if I fail?  How will I deal with it?  What will I do?  I’m so scared to report back.  But, this blog is a place for me to be real, and I’m REAL SCARED!!  I have six days of final preparation . . . and then I will take this test that is kind of a big deal for me career-wise . . . it could really help me advance and break through my own glass ceiling.  I’ll be nose to the grindstone for the next six days . . . wish me luck!  Hope you are all well and happy or at least o.k.!

Playing Mommy

You may or may not know that I live with my sister and her two kids, who I love dearly. One of my great regrets is not having kids myself, although I think with my illness, it was definitely the right thing for me.  It gives me great joy to love and nurture this niece and nephew of mine, and I feel such pride that my sister has gone off to a three-day conference and left them in my care.  That she trusts me with these bright little souls, says a lot to me.  As I sit here on the couch with them, they are both playing video games (14 year old boy and 11 year old girl) and my niece is singing a song she made up about the dogs.  They feel safe and loved with Aunt BPOF and that makes me happy.  Here is another chance for me to be present for others, not thinking about myself or ruminating on my many worries as I make their pizza or pasta.  Here is a time that I am called upon to be my best self, to rise above my broken, half-working side and be there for these kids.  I am both challenged and uplifted by this chance.  The weather buoys me with glorious springtime temperatures and I know I’ll get out and enjoy that over the next few days.  I hope to live up to the faith that has been placed in me. More to come….

The Spoon Theory And Why It’s Kinda Bullshit

You’ve heard the Spoon Theory, right? We all get a certain number of spoons per day.  Spoons equal energy, or spoons equal actions.  Once you use up your spoons, you’re done for the day.  You can’t do anything else.  And theoretically us bipolar types don’t get so many spoons (unless we’re manic, then there’s the dilemma of unlimited spoons).  So I totally get this and I ascribe to this and I consider myself to have very few spoons at my disposal.  SIDE NOTE:  Why spoons?  Why not forks?  Or tokens?  Gold coins?  I have no fucking idea.  I didn’t make this shit up.  I’ve only heard of it.  Some fuck said spoons so I’m going with it.  END SIDE NOTE. As I was saying, I don’t feel like I’m bursting with spoons.  I have a helluva time just getting up and showering, most days, let alone doing laundry or, God forbid, COOKING A MEAL!!  That would almost require hypomania for me.  But!  Then I get into crisis mode like I’m in now, with Dad in the hospital, and my Mom is sick with the cold that Dad had that turned into pneumonia.  All of this requires me to rise above the Spoon Theory.  And ya know what I call it when I can do wayyyyy more than I would ever think that I could? A State of Grace. That’s all I can think of!  It’s like the Universe, or the spoon giver, or whatever or whomever the fuck, said this chick needs to function on a higher level right now.  Let’s throw out every belief she has about how she thinks she can function, and give her a reprieve!  Because I am functioning at a level I could not have previously imagined.  I am there for my Dad and Mom.  I am driving all over creation, seeing my Mom, seeing my Dad, hanging in the hospital for hours, being in the moment, talking to my Dad, and accepting life as it is right now.  Who is this person?  This is not me!  This is some kind of gift!  I am supremely grateful for this time with my Dad.  Yes, when I get home, I’m tired, and I feel depleted, but in the moments that I’m meant to be of service to my family, I am able to do that, to help, to be present, to feed my Dad, get a nurse, whatever, with total serenity.  And no, I am absolutely not manic.  So what this tells me, is that theories like the Spoon Theory may have their place, but there are times when we can rise above our illness.  Maybe this will last for a few days, or maybe it will stretch for a few weeks, but for however long, I’m grateful to be the strong one for someone else, for a change.  And when I get in that car, and I feel like I just can’t do it, I remind myself that I am stronger than I think I am, and I can do more than I know.  And then I go.