GRIEF ISN’T SOMETHING I’M ABLE DO

I went to the grocery store yesterday because I was forced to. I went to one I don’t usually go to but my Dad likes. I walked in and saw a very thin, frail looking man, hunched over his carriage. I knew he looked familiar but he looked so old and sick I thought it couldn’t be him, it couldn’t be my Dad.

It was. I couldn’t move, I felt the numbing heat that starts in my legs and travels to my head. I knew the shaking/tremors were going to start, I didn’t know I already had tears on my face. I was stuck where I was standing and staring at him. I felt such fear and anger. Anger because he doesn’t listen to his Doctors or anyone else, anger because my twin sister has once again left me to watch our remaining parent die or kill themselves slowly because they’ve given up.

I’ve left her so many texts it’s like I’m a stalker. She hasn’t responded. I left a voicemail and she hasn’t responded. She thinks I’m too dramatic. I’m getting upset over nothing. My Dad’s Nephrologist told him he has less than 4 years and he’s being very optimistic with that estimate.

I told my Dad last night that I don’t want my name on the house or anything. I refuse to be here when my sister and her husband show up and start criticizing the house and yard. I know exactly how it will go. “How could you let it get this bad? How could you let him keep all these birds? How could you let him keep all the clocks? Why wasn’t the floor redone? How could you let him plant more flowers? Why didn’t you have those trees removed?”. I’m not going to listen to it when they weren’t here for any of it.

The didn’t offer to help with anything or come to visit. If my Dad wants to see his grandchildren he has to try to contact my sister and arrange a meeting. Meanwhile I’m a prisoner in this house of antiques and dirt. A prisoner of my own guilt and shame for the things I’ve done in the past that hurt my parents. There’s no way I can ever make up for the things that I’ve done or said.

Is there a time where I say enough is enough? Where I do something I want to do like an adult? Make a decision like an adult? If I turn out to be wrong I take responsibility and try to correct the wrong. Simple things like driving a long distance should not make my Dad angry or worry so much that he’s dry heaving. I might only have a few more years left than he does I think it’s okay to take a road trip or stay out past dark.

I know most of this is my fault because I never really moved out on my own. I knew in the back of my mind that I wouldn’t make it living on my own years ago. I’m a different person now. I still need to do a lot of work and I’m not 100% sure about being on my own but I would like to have the choice. I won’t abandon my Dad. This isn’t in my nature to do.

When I think of the man who taught me to swim, who could swim like a fish himself, who loved the water and looked like he was born from the sea, I smile.

When I think of the man who taught me drive with patience and enough trust to let me drive him over a large bridge in the pouring rain, I smile.

When I think of the man who saved every little animal I brought to him without hesitation, I smile.

When I think of the man who sat by my side night after night watching movies and TV he wasn’t interested in just to keep me company so I wouldn’t feel alone, I smile.

When I think of the man who saved me dying, I shut down and cry.

My mom passed away nine years ago and I still have not come to terms with it. Her death haunts me almost daily. Maybe it was because I watched her die I don’t know.

There are still some of my pets that have died that I have a hard time with when I think about them or something triggers a memory. I know people who are diagnosed Bipolar have a harder time with grief but I also know this is something more.

GONE, GONE, GONE

I feel it slowly creeping back in, the small tingle of fear and dread in the pit of my stomach. It won’t take long until I’m completely exhausted, unable to do even the smallest tasks. It’s 2:50 p.m. and I already feel my eyelids grow heavy, my sinuses swell, head pounding, thoughts scrambled.

No one really knows how much effort it takes for me to write or speak. I have to write what I want to say on paper first and repeat it over and over in my head and out loud. If it’s a certain time of day and I know I have to talk to someone I have to take extra medication and do all of the previous things. Why do you think calling into Dark Matter Radio to ask Dr. Drew a few questions was so important? Why I was so upset when I wasn’t allowed to speak. Because it took 2 days to prepare for the 1 phone call and extra medication to sound “normal” and not stutter. I also had to try to stay awake because the show is on the West Coast. So I was a little pissed off. But I blow things out of proportion or so I’m told.

The positivity I had yesterday and even this morning is almost gone. I want to put my headphones on and listen to songs I shouldn’t listen to because they bring me to a bad place. I want to turn the volume up and drown out the world, close my eyes and drown in all my tears, regret, anger, pain, hopelessness, rocking back and forth like the abandoned, frightened little girl I will always be.

My sister never knew our father took off when he found out our mom was pregnant. He didn’t come back until after we were born. She also didn’t know that they didn’t get married until we were 5, I knew all of this from a young age. My sister does know now I told her after our mom passed away. My sister has always thought it was funny that our grandfather left me at the car wash and no one realized it for hours. I stood there hugging the telephone pole and crying while the traffic flashed by. I was very little then with straight very blond long hair. I was actually pretty then, it wasn’t until puberty that it all went to shit. For me that was 10 years old. Anyway it wasn’t exactly a safe place to leave a little girl.

I never thought it was funny but the rest of the family did except my dad. My dad was furious and probably would’ve hit him if he thought he could get away with it. My dad had no use for my mom’s parents at all and I don’t blame him. My dad knows more than I do and I know a lot. From what I know it’s no surprise how my mom and her siblings turned out. My mom was the best but she was ill. I never realized it until it was too late and she was gone. I can’t imagine anyone growing up around those two people without being damaged.

(In two seconds I’m giving my dog to the first person who wants him the SOB!)

(Just kidding but he’s a pain in the ass)

Okay my head is pounding like crazy and I have to do more research.

I found this site Quizlet I think the name is, where you can learn about any subject for free at a college level but in an easy way. I love it. I’m doing Norse Myths and Legends and Psychology (Nature vs Nurture, Survival of the Fittest, Natural Selection, etc)

Thanks everyone.

HOW DO YOU TRUST YOUR OWN MIND?

I have many regrets and I have hurt many people over the years. I won’t use alcohol or not knowing I was dealing with a mental illness from an early age as excuses. These are only insights to my behavior. Bipolar started at an early age for me so I didn’t know life without it. People that hear or read this always have doubts. I had doubts because I am skeptical by nature and question everything. If you know me than you know I also research everything.

There was too much evidence proving that it started early, scientific, physical evidence that I couldn’t ignore. The research team at Harvard University couldn’t ignore it either nor could the team at Brown. At the time I was so overwhelmed with this new information I panicked and shut down. Someone else had to speak for me and tell them I couldn’t do what they were asking. I couldn’t be their freak in a lab, locked in a room with no access to my family. They should’ve known how damaging this would be. Even the suggestion of it was terrifying.

There’s a problem with letting your family see you at your weakest. They never forget it. They also never forget all the times you broke their trust while drinking. How could they? Letting my twin sister see me when I thought I was 5 years old and our Mom was coming to pick me up was a huge mistake. Allowing her husband to trigger a Conversion Disorder/PTSD episode like I’ve never had before was another mistake. Her seeing me so out of control and confused about where I was and blacking out gave her ammunition. More to put in her memory bank to bring up later.

She hasn’t been answering my texts about driving from New England to California but has answered other texts.

Today I finally talked to her, as in I actually spoke to her on the phone, it didn’t make me feel better.

She said she honestly didn’t think it was a good idea for me to try to make that kind of trip. She said she didn’t think I could handle it. It’s too far away if something happens and I panic or lose control.

I have been doing pretty well with control lately. I either write out my issues on paper or here. I also use other tools to calm myself down until I can think about a situation rationally.

I know I probably wouldn’t make it all the way but I wanted to try. Now I have butterflies in my stomach and I feel like I can’t swallow. I also feel trapped, like time is passing me by and it’s all too fast. I lost so much time already. I don’t have that much time left. This is something both my dad and sister refuse to listen to me about and they won’t listen to my Doctors. They won’t look at the statistics or my medical records. They refuse to talk about my alcoholism and the amount I drank. How much damage it did permanently both physically and mentally.

I’m not sure if I am thinking clearly or not because I’ve never thought like other people do. I’ve always loved the dark beautiful side of things, understanding human nature, nature vs nurture, survival of the fittest, basic instinct. I would read books and want to be a vampire queen, a Goddess of Rock, The Morrigan, a warrior in a magical land, anything but myself. But I woke up the same every morning. I lived in a fantasy world for a very long time. It was safe there in my books, in my bedroom, hiding from the outside.

My best friend W called yesterday to catch up on things. She asked a question. “Would you get better if the person who hurt you the most apologized? Or if you talked to him and got closure?” I knew where she was going with this. I knew that she had seen and been around him in the last year or so. I told her the truth.

It isn’t about him anymore, it’s about me. I’m not the same person who thought they deserved to be treated like garbage. I have self worth now. I actually pity him because he’s incapable of changing. I will be honest and say that if I saw him do that grin he does I can’t promise that I’ll remain calm. It’s hard to know so I think I’m better off leaving it alone. Do I want him to see me now? Yes, I do. I want to stand in front of him and rub it in his face that I am now a beautiful woman who has more than he ever will. But people like him will never get it. He’s manipulative to the point of being a sociopath.

Her response was “Jesus, you just said everything I was thinking about him and you’re right he hasn’t changed. I was around him 2 times for E’s sake and I couldn’t take it I had to leave early both times. I hate him, I hate his face. I’m kind of glad you said what you did. He had a rule where no one could say “Jesus Christ or for Christ’s sake” in front of him and when I heard that I wanted to puke. That was what did it for me, all I could think about was you and I left.” W understands me better than anyone.

W’s advice about the road trip? DO IT! If you get homesick turn around and head home. you know yourself and how you are going to feel, you’re pretty good at judging when your mood is changing or when you’re going into crisis mode I’ve seen it. Don’t listen to anyone but yourself, don’t tell anyone until your ready and in your car on the highway.

So I’m still confused because I listen to too many people and not to myself. I’ve learned not to trust myself because other people don’t trust my decisions.

Still confused.

INSECURE CONFUSION ISOLATION PAIN REGRET OUTCAST FEAR

Most people know that music has been a part of my life since before I was born. It started with Elvis then went to Black Sabbath, AC/DC, Meatloaf, Super Tramp, everything my brother listened to, then what I learned to like on my own. I love lyrics. This is probably why I never really liked Led Zeppelin and some other groups that did long drum or guitar solos.

People in my life don’t understand why I get so worked up over the death of someone I didn’t know or comments made about the death of someone I didn’t know.

It’s because a large majority of people in the music industry (up to 70%) have a mental health/addiction problem. People who are bipolar have a tendency to be drawn to music, language, and alcohol. The research also shows that people who are bipolar are generally more intelligent. (I’m not just saying this because I’m bipolar)

When I listen to music I hear the lyrics first. Some lyrics are why I love the bands I do. I have songs I listen to when I want to feel good about myself and songs for when I’m down. But you’ll never know the feeling of hearing a song that describes you to a T when you don’t even know what’s wrong with you. All you can do is sit and cry because you realize you aren’t the only one. You’re in your early 30’s and you finally find someone who is singing your life and you’re not alone. That band was Blue October. I want to thank them for the song “Hate Me” which is so much like my mother and I. All I could do is sit there and sob. It started a slow change in me. I’m a work in progress that I probably won’t get to finish.

I’m leaning towards taking that road trip because I need to do something an adult would do. I need to see new things, meet new people (within reason). My best friend W said I should go for it and she has a degree in Psychology but works for the Post Office because it pays better. lol

So I’m thinking, making lists, thinking, making lists, and maybe I’ll actually get in the car and go.

PSYCHEDELICS IN MENTAL HEALTH & WHERE’S DAVE?

I shouldn’t keep bothering poor Dave. I’m going to wind up with a restraining order when actually I’m just worried. I don’t want to date him, marry him, touch him (maybe his hair) or anything I just recognize the look in someone’s eyes that I’ve seen in my own.

Psychedelics are the new “IT” drug/treatment for Trauma/Addiction/Depression, the problem is there isn’t enough recent research on the effects of Psychedelics on different disorders to make it a sure thing.

From 1949 to 1973 there were 21 studies published involving a total of 423 patients. Only 4 of the studies used control groups and descriptions of the patients were not very specific. They didn’t differentiate between patients with depression or anxiety disorders. Most of the studies were done on inpatients who knew they were getting a psychedelic drug beforehand. This causes the person to have expectations or preconceptions before the study even started.

What researchers can agree on is that it does help with treating alcoholism/addiction. But funding for more recent research probably won’t happen. Psychedelics are not patentable so there’s no money to be made, patients would only have to take single doses rather then repeated doses. This means less money for Pharmaceutical Companies and they won’t let that happen.

James Rucker, MD, MRCPsych, PhD, of the King’s College London Institute of Psychiatry has done some recent research and gone over all of the old research. The one thing that is concerning is the recent research that suggests patients with a history of Bipolar Disorder, Psychosis, First degree relatives with Psychosis, histories of self harm or suicide attempts should be excluded from Psychedelic use.

People with Mood Disorders have been known to feel “self aware, enlightened or feel they see the world differently” but only for a short time before they enter into a depressive episode.

I’ve researched this extensively and this was the first time I had read this information. I have to say that it makes sense to me from people I know that have tried it.

The brain is so complex without further studies it’s too risky for me.

 

LOSSES, MISCONCEPTIONS AND WHATEVER ELSE COMES OUT

When I was in High School there was a group of guys that all had long hair, leather jackets, barely came to school, and were in bands. Back then they petrified me. I never looked any of them in the eye. A few of them were cruel and a few I couldn’t figure out.

One of them (his name was Pop) was kind of quiet except for the few times I interacted with him. I have that effect on people. Our High School was built like an open college campus you would find in a warm climate. Only we are in New England. In the winter you had to bring a container of salt with you to school or risk falling in front of everyone and being laughed at. Believe me they would laugh and not think to help you up.

One day after a snow storm I came around a building to find Pop using a hammer on a pile of snow. I have no idea why he was hammering snow and I didn’t stop to ask him. He had the appearance of being high all the time. He was in the Future Farmer’s of America Program and I thought maybe he was growing what my brother had been kicked out of school for growing in the same program.

On Valentine’s Day you could by Carnations for your Valentine. YAY! I hated it because I knew I wasn’t going to get one. Then I saw Pop skipping around with Carnations and smiling. He came up to me and handed me one. I tried to tell him no one sent me one but he skipped away. (Yes he really did skip)

Years later I ran into Pop again, I was drunk and at a Pantera concert. W and I had gotten ourselves trapped in the pit and it wasn’t going so well. I couldn’t protect her and myself at the same time. She wasn’t about to throw any elbows or fists to get out so that meant it was up to me. I was capable of defending myself while drunk.

At some point I felt strong hands grabbing me and pulling me out, it was Pop. His friend helped W. I tried to talk to him and thank him but he walked away.

More years go by and I found out that my brother in law was good friends with Pop. It turns out he never drank or did drugs, he was diabetic from an early age and was against alcohol and drugs. Probably why he didn’t want to talk to me. I did get to talk to him a few times sober at a few of my brother in law’s shows. He was articulate, kind, funny, generous, I had him all wrong.

He had also been to L.A. for a few years and did okay with his band The Bastards. When I look at the pictures I can’t believe it’s him. His biggest influence was Motorhead.

A few years ago he was leaving work late one night, it was winter, he stopped to pick up a pizza because he hadn’t eaten all day. He didn’t know what his blood sugar level was at and went into a Diabetic Coma while sitting in his car. Because it was so cold and late at night, no one knew until the next day, by then it was too late. I was devastated.

I found out he was an advocate for worker’s rights and numerous charitable organizations. He worked towards getting children that are harder to adopt, adopted. He was a beautiful soul that I thought was high or crazy for the first several years I knew him.

We never really know anyone. Not even ourselves.

Physically and mentally I’m deteriorating a little faster than I thought I would. My Psychiatrist asked if he could measure me while I was there because he thought I looked shorter. I told him I was shorter, that I was 5’5″ but he wanted to measure me anyway. I’m now under 5’5″ since my visit to the Gastroenterologist on June 27th. That’s kind of scary. My neck has been in a lot of pain and the Doctor said “You know with Degenerative Disc Disease it doesn’t stay in one place so if it’s in your spine most likely it’s in your neck and you need to have scans done. What did your last bone density scan say?” Huh? What bone density scan? No one has ever suggested one even though I’ve gone into early menopause, have Celiac Disease, arthritis, osteoporosis, spinal stenosis, and on and on it goes. I’m also having blinding headaches and nosebleeds at night.

But I don’t want to go to anymore doctors. My brain is telling me to get in my new car and drive cross country to California. I have never done anything like that, I’ve always been too afraid. I’m afraid now, but if I don’t start doing things I might run out of time. I’ve been alone for over 9 years, my sister goes on “family vacations” every couple of weeks but if I ask her to spend a day or two with me she can’t. She’s too tired or the kids have too much to do. The summer is almost gone and I haven’t been in any water. I’ve hardly been outside. I ask permission before speaking to people (my dad mostly) or I ask if I’m bothering them by talking.

My Dad was told he has less than 4 years if he’s lucky. I already know I will not do well without him. He has set a high bar for humanity. I know I complain about him but he’s changed because he’s ill and because of his age and grief. It happens. Before all of these things he was honorable, loyal, generous, kind, didn’t judge, strong physically and mentally, he always made us feel safe.

He has saved my life more times than I can count and he helped create me whether he actually knew it or not. lol I have a feeling of being lost and wanting to run at the same time. I feel like I’m missing out on something also. I know I expect too much and I’ll probably be disappointed but wouldn’t it be better to at least try?

The best thing about Pop is that he lived and loved while he was here.

1457754_1452840218276433_2028735470_n

Too Much Everything

It isn’t easy when you are too much of everything or feel too much. It is the most difficult part of Bipolar for me. What makes it worse is when you can’t say or do anything about how you feel or what you observe.

I’M TOO QUIET: At times I’m ridiculed for being quiet and shy. I listen to what’s being said around me. I suppose some people would call it eavesdropping but it was never done in a malicious way. I would simply zone out and pick up on conversations.

I’M TOO LOUD: At times I was told to take it down a notch because I would talk too loud and fast. There were people who thought it was funny when I talked loud and fast because they assumed it was due to my caffeine level. Other people became annoyed.

I’M TOO SENSITIVE: I am sensitive in every way. I admit this. I’m sensitive to how other people are feeling, the energy in a room when I enter, a person’s emotions when I’m in the same room with them, and the eyes really are the window to a person’s soul. I’m a sponge that soaks up every positive/negative energy around them while trying to deal with my own feelings.

I’M TOO EMPATHETIC: When I see a person talk about an issue important to me that’s also important to them and that person breaks down I break down. If I see someone in a home video on Instagram and I know they’re not themselves I get a sick feeling in my stomach. The hardest part is being unable to say or do anything about it. If I comment I look like a “crazy” fan or like

I want something. The fact is I worry too much.

I WORRY TOO MUCH: I worry all the time. It’s a horrible feeling. You always feel disaster is just around the corner. In my own personal life a lot of the time it has been.

I can and do see when a person is heading towards a depressive episode or they’re in a bad place. I may not always be aware of it in myself but in others I’m pretty spot on.

My twin sister doesn’t give me credit for much but for this she has been amazed at how I pick up on things. At one time she accused me of somehow reading her text messages or her husband’s. They always have their phones on them and I NEVER SEE THEM IN PERSON ENOUGH! I asked her when she thought I could’ve possibly had access to either of their phones? Her husband’s is always physically on him and I never get that close to him! lol

After it happened a few times she admitted that I was intuitive about certain issues. Which is true it does only apply to specific areas. My guess is because I deal with these things myself. I don’t always know when I’m Manic or in a dangerously deep depression. There have been times when I’ve been triggered, setting off the Conversion Disorder, that I only remember pieces of. This scares me more than anything. Being completely out of control of not only your mind but your body too is frightening. When it’s a small trigger I know I’ll stutter a bit and it will pass. When it’s a big trigger I might not be aware of, all bets are off. It’s embarrassing, shame inducing, confusing, exhausting, scary, and sometimes I don’t know the trigger.

I have “too much” areas that aren’t necessarily a negative. I’m too kind, I’m too loyal, I’m too curious, there are many more I just can’t think of them right now.

I’m not saying I’m a Prophet, Psychic, or anything similar, we all have the ability to be more aware of facial expressions, mannerisms, tone of voice, change in behavior, a person’s eyes, we just don’t tap into that part of out brains. When we don’t we miss a lot that could potentially save lives.