Although a little sluggish, I still feel today is a "get up and get at 'em" day. There’s no guarantee we'll get it while it’s hot, or have a hope of getting out of here alive, but as long as we’ve got to do this thing, I say we do it in style, and we don’t waste any time while we’re at it. Multitasking is the new time reliever riddled with the most inefficiencies. The important thing is that all the cool kids are doing it, and we all want to be a cool kid, right? That, and be able to wear our underwear on the outside of our tights like Superman, which somehow creates a coolness paradox which cannot be contained or explained.
A wise man once waxed lyrically (and I'm inclined to believe him most empirically)...
Gotta get up, gotta get out, gotta get home before the morning comes
What if I'm late, gotta big date, gotta get home before the sun comes up
Up and away, got a big day, sorry can't stay, I gotta run, run, yeah
Gotta get home, pick up the phone, I gotta let the people know I'm gonna be late…
Friday nugget of radio wave wisdom: Harry Nilsson “Gotta Get Up”.
Met with my family doctor yesterday and we discussed the tumultuous time I've been experiencing lately with my emotional and mental pendulum swinging, in what I perceive to be, a wider and more erratic arc. The consensus was we would attempt to introduce a new medication to my regimen in an attempt to reduce the frequency and intensity of my mood swings. Over time I've grown anxious of, and adverse to, experimenting with new drugs due to previous experiences ranging from ineffective to downright terrifying. The last medication I attempted had no affect but carried with it possible dangers to my kidneys so I halted its use, while the two previous alternatives had such negative side effects that one landed me in the hospital for a day as I experienced severe panic attacks and lost control of my limbs before finally losing consciousness in the hospital waiting room. Still, something has to be done, and once again I reluctantly wade into the dark waters of the unknown and untrusted.
Medication for my condition is a tool. It's there to assist my chemically-unbalanced brain reach a stable enough environment to focus on my learned life skills to manage my every day routine and interactions. Without them, and the benefits they provide, the ensuing chaos makes it difficult to focus effectively enough to function, let alone apply anything resembling a controlled approach to conscious and effective self-care.
The wrench in the works? Cash. Moola. Funding. Fiscal possibility. It all comes down to the cost of the new medication and my ability to afford it. Too high a price tag, and the option becomes moot. Even if I can swing it, and it's successful in fulfilling its intended duties, it still doesn't bridge the vital gap of providing the valuable component of having a skilled profession such as a psychologist to help me work through the day-to-day challenges I face. Unfortunately, too often, when it comes to things like mental health, it's a money game. This is a subject I have touched upon in previous posts and will someday, I'm sure, explore in greater detail, so I won't deviate into a separate tangent here. Still, there are times when one is left to pursue what is available and hope for the best.
It's Thursday and I've decide to declare it a "day for the best", so my challenge to you is choose an obstacle that has been holding you captive and be the rebel you carry inside. Grab hold of the tree and shake it. Either grab the fruit that falls or dodge it as circumstances dictate, but take control and clear the barrier you've held at bay over your head for too long. One way or another, you will remove one more obstacle threatening to block your vision of the sky above.
As an aside, thanks again to the irreplaceable Melissa Daer and her follicly-inspired artistic talents she applied to my unruly forest of the scalp. If you need a hair cut, there is no one better.
Music for a Thursday best: Julian Lennon "Too Late for Goodbyes".
Up at six and doing my impression of Einstein drinking coffee, except without all the brains and such.
Looks like it's going to be a real Tuesday out there today folks so be sure to wear clean underwear, even if they're not yours. Owning your own pair of clean underwear may be a luxury but it's not always a deal breaker. It's like I always say - "don't ask, don't tell, but never let them find you smell." Really, I do say that. All the time. To myself mostly, but I've never heard anyone dispute it yet. Of course, I mostly roll commando but that's a secret I'll take with me to the grave.
Damn, I forgot how terrible I am at keeping secrets.
Still too cold for me to take a walk so I suppose I'll get to work instead. This mouse isn't going to push itself around. I meant that in a literal sense of course, and not from a position of power and control over something that can't defend itself. I may be many things but a bully is not one of them. Truth be known, I'm actually kind of afraid of the thing. It doesn't have any eyes and yet I can still feel it staring at me, judging me, until I cover its face with my hand and move it back and forth to keep it off balance. Wow. Maybe I'm paranoid AND a bully.
You can learn so much about yourself on a Tuesday. Which is what today is. A Tuesday. But you knew that already didn't you?
A Tues-tastic tune: Buddy Holly "That'll Be The Day"
The converse are impatient for spring walks and some warm fresh air. The mornings are getting lighter and Spring is on the way. Biggest challenge since moving back to London will be finding the best places to walk and the greatest regret is not having the boardwalk along the beach to traverse every evening. Going to miss the sunset photos.
Still, time marches on and so will I. The Converse must be appeased and my spirit must be pleased for my sanity to be at ease.
Monday music spin: Cyndi Lauper "Girls Just Wanna have Fun".
Up and at 'em, said the captain, setting schedule by decree.
The wash set the pace - body, clothes, dish, and face - while the sun poured the light in to see.
Work for clients began, with keyboard at hand, because no one can live long for free.
But later there's play, relaxation awaits, as balance in all is the key.
And the best part of all, through the big and the small?
The captain in charge here was me.
Sunday mixer for the kicker: Eurythmics "Missionary Man".
The perpetually fluctuating and ridiculously drastic elasticity of my emotional state is not lost on me, and neither is the dramatic and laborious impact it must have on those around me - but this morning I feel good. The sun is shining, I'm accomplishing things, and although trials and tribulations still exist, for today at least, they exist in another time. It may not always be easy or readily apparent, but I do indeed attempt to take things as they come and get my breaths of air where and when I can.
I hope others are able to do the same and I encourage everyone to take a break and spend your valuable time on yourself and the ones you love. I may not be up here for long, but I'm making this post to help remind myself that sometimes, every once in a while, it is possible for me to be this person as well.
Song for a sunny Saturday: EMF "Unbelievable".
I owe an apology to those I upset by my dramatic and admittedly dire post on Wednesday. It's obvious I was in a dark place, but believable or not, my primary motivation was never to test the existence or strength of dedication of those who care for me. I found myself driven by the need to expel my overwhelming sense of despair and helplessness before it consumed me. In my act of desperation, I sought to save myself by exploding rather then imploding. Unfortunately, one of the consequences of an explosion is the shrapnel caught by those closest to you. No one comes away unscathed and there is a burden of responsibility and selfishness inherent in such an act. So for this, I apologize and ask forgiveness, as well as your patience as I do my best to deal with my recurring struggle. I assure you that I appreciate, more than I can ever adequately express, the actions of those who took the time to reach out, both openly online and through private messages, to assure me that they heard me and are there to lend help if I should choose to seek it out.
Sometimes the realization that this is who I am, that the ebb and flow of my existence is dictated by shifting states between depression and anxiety, hopelessness and sometimes even euphoria, causes me frustration and anger. It's not a flu or a cold that will eventually pass, but something that is a part of me. Something that can Jekyl-and-Hyde me at any time, and will be an unwelcome roommate (or roommates plural based on perception) for the rest of my life. At times, when I'm at my most vulnerable, it makes me question whether I can handle it, or more accurately still, whether I want to. Perhaps I'm not strong enough and the only way out is, well, to get out. The only way to win the game sometimes is to not play at all. These are the times that lead me to days like Wednesday and the outpouring of my private thoughts and feelings for all to see. For anyone who frowns on what they consider "over-sharing" and attention seeking on their Facebook wall - perhaps you're right. Perhaps you feel that people like myself need to tell it to a therapist and not the world at large. All I can offer in my defense is sometimes it's not about seeking a response; it's about knowing that someone, anyone, knows that you exist and you are in pain. Sometimes there is no one else and you need to do something, anything, to get it out while your primary instinct is to keep it to yourself and let it destroy you.
Whatever the reasons, I felt it only fair that I let those who are kind enough to worry about me that I'm still here. I'm far from "OK" but after not getting out of bed until after six last night, I was up again at six this morning and I'm tackling Friday the best I can.
Have a great weekend and do me a favour, stay awesome for me. The world can always use more awesome.
Song to Friday by: Salt-N-Pepa "Push It"
Not the best start to the day. I'm tired.
I'm tired of feeling weak.
I'm tired of feeling pathetic.
I'm tired of feeling like a burden.
I'm tired of feeling like a failure.
I'm tired of feeling like there's no hope and no end.
I'm tired of feeling like I'm looking for attention.
I'm tired of feeling incompetent.
I'm tired of feeling better, only to end up back where I belong.
I'm tired of feeling like where I belong is at the bottom.
I'm tired of feeling afraid.
I'm tired of feeling so anxious I can't stop pacing and pulling at my hair.
I'm tired of feeling paranoid and not being able to leave my apartment.
I'm tired of feeling I'm about to lose everything and I have nothing to lose, all at the same time.
I'm tired of feeling.
I'm tired of having to take pills to keep things "level".
I'm tired of pills that don't work.
I'm tired of holding things together.
I'm tired of fighting the negativity ingrained in my own mind.
I'm tired of being alone, because as much as people offer their support, it can only come from the outside, never the inside, where I live.
I'm tired of not saying what I think or how I feel because I don't want to make others feel uncomfortable.
I'm tired of being afraid to fall, in case I can't get back up again.
I'm tired of trying to make myself believe I was ever "up" to begin with.
I'm tired of self sabotage driven by self loathing.
I'm tired of hearing.
I'm tired of hearing "I've been where you are. Things will get better."
I'm tired of hearing "You just need to think positively."
I'm tired of hearing "Have you tried meditation?"
I'm tired of hearing "Have you tried different medication?"
I'm tired of hearing "Have you tried counselling?"
I'm tired of hearing "As bad as it is, it could always be worse."
I'm tired of hearing "It's all in your head."
I'm tired of hearing "Think of the people who love you."
I'm tired of hearing "It will pass."
I'm tired of overcrowded and understaffed hospitals.
I'm tired of useless lists of useless resources with useless solutions and short term commitments.
I'm tired of the only potentially effective resources being priced out of possibility.
I'm tired of "specialists" who can't respond, not even a simple phone call or email, to eight years of constant doctor referrals so you at least feel like you're taken seriously. Like your situation matters enough to warrant consideration and decision, even if it's a "no". That your life matters enough to be acknowledged. That you matter at all.
I'm tired of not being able to sleep at night because I dread having to face another day too soon.
I'm tired of waking up with my first reaction being disappointment I'm still alive.
That I will have to repeat it all.
I hate that my life is all about "again".
I hate my life.
I'm tired of being so tired. Not the best start to the day.
A song for the hell of it: Crowded House "Better Be Home Soon".
It's almost three in the morning, and I'm trying once again to coax myself to bed, when I find my mind turning to my daughter Madi. When she was a little girl, I used to shave my head, and sometimes, as we watched TV, she would curl up in my lap and run her tiny hand back and forth across my bristly scalp. She said she liked the way it felt. It was such a simple gesture, but I remember how close - how connected - it made me feel to her. It was something special only we shared, and it makes me sad now to know I'll never be able to reclaim those moments. As I finally find it in me to call it a night, I do so with mixed emotions. I'm happy for the opportunities that created those memories with her, but I mourn my inability to recognize at the time that eventually, buried amongst everything else that would grow to seem so empirically important, it would be those quiet times between the two of us that will forever matter most. It's regretful that we only gain true wisdom through experience, but I suppose it's also only by the loss of something that we can appreciate the measure of its true value. Goodnight Madigan, I love you and I'm sorry I didn't hold you tighter when I had you curled so close.
Well that was an all-nighter and there's still more to go. Made some headway on some work, so at least it wasn't a waste of anything other than sleep. We'll see how long I can go before I sneak a nap. I have to be careful because if I remain awake too long I can edge into a manic phase and the next thing I know, a week has gone by and I haven't made it to bed.
Still, it's Friday and should be treated as such. That's why I've decided to work without pants. In my office, every Friday is no-pants Friday. Of course, in my office, no one ever seems to want to hang around for long. I choose to believe it's a coincidence but then again, I also run on little sleep and a questionable lack of good judgement.
For everyone else getting up and on their way, be happy knowing you don't have to share a desk next to mine and everything else should be a bonus today. Oh, and don't forget to be awesome.
A jingle for the pants: The Cure "Friday I'm in Love".