BIPOLAR IS HUMILIATING

The last two years my moods change rapidly. I’m at the point where I don’t know if it’s me or my illness talking and making decisions. I know most people will say that isn’t possible. I’m so confused that I really don’t know anymore.

In the morning I’ll be agitated and talk nonstop. I want to do a million things but lack the physical energy to do them. But my mind continues to race with thoughts and ideas.

In the afternoon I become quiet, down, sad, and usually cry. I have to hide this part because my Dad will get angry if he sees that I’ve been crying. He doesn’t like it when I talk a lot either so he will get up and go outside leaving me sitting there in the middle of a sentence. I find this happening with many people.

I do try to control all of this. The more I try to control it the more stressed I feel and that leads me to stuttering.

At night I sometimes go back to rapid speech and thinking. I also think I have great ideas like calling in to a radio show with Dr. Drew. It wasn’t really a great idea. I got one question out and he ran with it never allowing me to say what I needed to say. Then next thing I knew the call was dropped. I was embarrassed and felt like an idiot. It would’ve been worse if I actually said what I planned on saying. I often think I’m smarter than I am. I also think I’m witty when actually I sound like a bitch.

My Doctor’s appointment didn’t go so well. Everyone was very nice but my health is definitely getting worse. My blood pressure has never been as low as 94/40 and they had to due my heart rate 3 times to make sure it was correct. I’m also shorter than I was a few months ago. I don’t know how a person goes from 5’7″ at 37 years old to 5′ 5″ at 44 years old. A woman my age shouldn’t have Osteoporosis this bad and Degenerative Disc Disease.

My Dad is upset because my car finally died two days ago. He wants to know why I haven’t cleaned it out and bought a new one yet. BECAUSE IT WAS ONLY TWO DAYS AGO! I’m not like him, I can’t push myself to the point of collapsing because it’s what a “man does”. It’s also going to kill him.

I lift my head too fast and I black out. I go up a flight of stairs and I’m exhausted like I swam the entire Ocean and see red dots. My toes are a dark red purple and my feet are swollen again. I’m also having trouble breathing and weird headaches that are actually in my temples. This worries me a little because my Dad was diagnosed with Temporal Arteritis which is bad and I’m having similar symptoms. It can be genetic. Like everything else I have.

So I embarrass myself, my family, and I’m not a productive member of society. People are not interested in explanations or excuses so I’ve stopped. All I keep saying is “I’m sorry” I say it so much that I apologized to an empty grocery cart the other day. I don’t know who I am, who I ever was or who I want to be.

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WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU FIND OUT YOU ARE MENTALLY ILL?

You would think after a lifetime of knowing that something isn’t quite right with the way you react to the world, the way you behave around people, how you handle emotions, that finally being diagnosed with a mental illness or two would help. It doesn’t.

I just remember sitting there with a buzzing sound in my ears. I knew it was a strong possibility but I ignored it. I didn’t want it to be true. I didn’t want to be like my family members that everyone avoided and complained about. Even I was guilty of it.

The only thing that changed was I stopped drinking. Did I feel better inside? No. Not even after several years of medication trials, different therapies, and a round of ECT. It progresses. There are a 101 reasons why but it doesn’t matter. Even manic episodes leave more irritable and angry than anything. I become fueled with frustration and just want to run. But there is nowhere to go that I don’t take myself with me.

None of my Doctors have ever discussed the immense grief I still feel over my mother. It will be 9 years in February since she passed away and it still feels like yesterday. There are days I find myself on the bathroom floor sobbing into a towel and calling her name. I still have dreams of watching her die in front of me. I couldn’t look away. In retrospect they were doing CPR on a woman who was already dead. It was for our benefit. I wish they hadn’t. I wouldn’t have had to see the bloody foam coming out of her mouth and her lifeless eyes. The foam continued for hours after. My sister was spared seeing any of this.

I recently sent a text to my sister that was pretty mean. I always say I’m sorry after. I want more from her than she’s capable of giving. She has a family of her own and her own problems. I can’t expect her to deal with me too. I’m not her responsibility. I’m no one’s but my own. That’s a lonely feeling. All I have is my Dad who loves me unconditionally. I’m petrified of what will happen when he’s gone. Even with him here I feel alone.

I am confused a lot of the time. I have trouble making decisions. If left to my own devices I would sit in this house never leaving, never bathing, just sitting. The outside world grows less appealing everyday. I have less energy as the days go by. I lose more weight and lose interest in everything around me. I feel lost and don’t want to be found. I am at the bottom of the hole but this time I don’t care if I get out. The only thing I look forward to is my next kidney surgery and the anesthesia. I usually see my mom when I’m under. It’s becoming harder and harder for them to bring me out of the anesthesia. I know they’ve discussed this with my Psychiatrist. They think it has something to do with the Conversion Disorder. They’re afraid my brain won’t allow me to wake up during one of the surgeries but there is no other choice. I could care less either way.

This is how I feel most of the time. There are some okay days. Days where everything makes sense. There are just too few of them now. But I’ll keep going because it’s what my mom would’ve wanted. That has to be enough for now.

MY FRIEND CRITICISM

As you may or may not know, I do not take criticism well. That pertains to everything. If I’m not washing a dish the way someone thinks I should be and says so I will get emotional. If I get “notes” on what a “Post” should look like versus a “Page” or a “Blog” or “Journal” or the “About” section, I don’t get emotional I become pissed.

None of us are perfect. I’m not here looking for a book deal like some people are. I don’t want an award or a mention in a magazine. All I want is to know that there are people similar to me in the Universe. I want to know that I’m NOT ALONE.  Because without that there is no point. I’ll just talk more to my Chihuahua. It’s messier when I talk to him because he constantly wants to lick my pain away. (And he eats poop)

Back to my friend Criticism. Do you know which class I always hated the most throughout my school history? Art Class. I remember in Grade School having a teacher who looked like the host of Dance Fever, Deney Terrio. He made me nervous. I can’t even draw a stick person correctly. I can’t draw a straight line with a ruler! I believe I spent most of my time in the nurse’s office.

In Junior High we moved on to Clay. When the teacher asked us to mold something out of clay I turned in a…….ball of clay. My twin sister on the other hand was winning Art competitions. She was also writing short stories that the teachers loved. This only bothered me because my dad is artistic. He used to do charcoal sketches, oil paintings, beautiful wrought iron welding, he even did our landscaping artistically. My mom could sing and dance. I could do none of these things.

I had a hard time coming to terms with the fact that I wasn’t creative or imaginative at all. My mind just went blank and I would freeze when asked for creative ideas.

I have now realized what the problem was. I was always surrounded by people and put on the spot. I found that when I was alone I could be creative in my own way. While working at a jewelry factory for years I forgot that when I was alone I would put together my own jewelry with spare parts. I started doing jewelry at the age of 10/11. My mom would bring it home with her and she taught me how to help. I liked anything repetitious where I didn’t have to talk or think. Linking, carding, looping, accomplishes that. Designing is a whole different ballgame.

I never showed anyone the jewelry I made until much later in life. I’m talking a few years ago. I was going to try to sell some of it but always somehow managed to give it away for free. I always felt “Who do I think I am charging people for something I made?“. I couldn’t hear the compliments or positive feedback.

The one person that sold my jewelry and believed in me was a young girl I was going to for my hair. I had become too weak to hold my hands above my head to color my own hair. I always felt better around her. She was that kind of person. I gave her some of my jewelry that she liked. She asked if I would mind if she tried to sell some my jewelry because her clients had asked about it. I gave her permission to handle everything.

I always underestimated myself. Where I would’ve asked $10 for a necklace she asked between $30-$50 depending on the amount of Swarovski Crystals used and how much time she estimated it had taken me to make the piece. She sold quite a few. I cried in my car of course when she gave me the money and told me what she had done. She also received a gigantic tip that day.

I had to stop making jewelry because of my vision and my hands shaking. The vision is due to my kidney failure.

I have learned these past few years that I’m creative in different ways. I am good at looking at someone and seeing what color hair would bring out their features. I can visualize a hair cut and make up palette. I’m good at putting together outfits. I can spot artistic talent that other people dismiss with one glance. I think outside the box and because I find beauty in the darkest of places I find the unique. Most of it sounds superficial. To me it isn’t. It’s the little things that help me continue.

 

 

 

WHAT RESEMBLES RAGE AGAIN

The last several days I have been locked in my room and on occasion locked in my bathroom. I figure at 73 my dad would have hard time getting through both doors.

My father, as good of a man as he is, has always had a short temper. He was the King of Road Rage and yelling at cashiers.

When he makes up his mind to dislike something or someone there is no changing it. When he quit drinking cold turkey he hated all alcohol and couldn’t be around anyone who had a drink.

He was the same when he quit smoking. Unfortunately for us he decided to do this at the same time he quit drinking. My mother joined him in sobriety but did not quit smoking. This caused some problems as you can imagine.

He is 73 years old, on Dialysis, has had a quadruple bypass, an aortic aneurysm, Internal Hemorrhaging from an unknown source, Temporal Arteritis, Peritonitis twice, and a various amount of other life threatening issues.

An ER doctor put him on Prednisone for his diagnosis of Temporal Arteritis without doing any of the diagnostic testing. The Prednisone made my father’s temper 10 times what it was. He had mellowed out in the last few years for my sake. The Prednisone brought it all back and then some.

The smallest thing will set him off. Today he couldn’t find the phone number for the Vet. The Pomeranian has Epilepsy and needed her medication refilled. I could see the storm brewing a mile away. I didn’t want to be caught in it. I didn’t move fast enough.

The throwing of notebooks and papers started. The “Goddamns” followed. I tried to give him the number and was yelled at. I grabbed some water and started to head upstairs. He asked “What do you think you’re doing?”. I told him I couldn’t be around him when he was acting the way he was. He responded “Maybe you should just leave then.”  I told him it was a bad time of year for me and I didn’t want to make matters worse for him so I was getting out of his way. He said not to bother he was leaving and didn’t I think this time of year was tough on him too? He said some other things that I either don’t want to remember or just don’t.

While I’m upstairs he slams the door so hard downstairs that the items on my bathroom sink fall over. I start to shake. I can’t type because my hands have a tremor when this happens. I try to call my sister but she doesn’t answer. She went hiking with a friend not far from our house. I did try to text but my tremor was too bad at the time. I would’ve used the Talk to Text but I found I was also stuttering. She would’ve received gibberish.

I took a klonopin to calm down and got in my bed for awhile. It’s the only thing that helps when I get really bad.

I shouldn’t have to live like this. I love my dad and I owe him so much. If I have to sacrifice myself I will. I don’t think he realizes that even though he’s been through so much he is actually the healthier one in the house.

There are a few things that make me extremely angry. He’s been getting off of the Dialysis machine early because he wants to go to a clock auction or a pigeon show. They have to change the schedule this week because of Thanksgiving and he would have to go on Saturday. There is a Pigeon Show on Saturday that he registered for to compete in. If they can’t fit him in somewhere else at dialysis then he will skip it.

The fact that he will risk his life to show pigeons pisses me off. I’m tired of it. I’m tired of being the only one of his children that even talks to him or cares.

What I don’t regret is all the good times I was able to have with both of my parents that my siblings missed out on. I wouldn’t trade that for anything061156c9d31ef8bdf0c874b8f57da5f9

My dad and I try our best. Some days are a lot harder than others.

DO YOU REALLY KNOW WHAT CELIAC DISEASE IS? (I Bet You Don’t Know All Of It)

First I want to start by saying that I find it absurd my computer keeps telling me I’m spelling Celiac wrong. Why? Because I have Celiac Disease. I was diagnosed with it shortly after being diagnosed as Bipolar. Yup, it was a wonderful year. lol

I’ll start with the basics for anyone who is new to this.

CELIAC DISEASE: An autoimmune disease caused by the abnormal functioning of the immune system that produces antibodies against your own tissue.

CAUSE: The cause is gluten. GLUTEN: a mixture of 2 proteins (wheat, rye) that helps food maintain it’s shape, acts as a binder, gives dough it’s elasticity, and the fermentation process of some alcohol.

WHERE IS IT FOUND?: Gluten can be found in unexpected places like cosmetics, medications, some stamps and envelopes, bread, alcohol, cereal, processed meats, and many more products.

It only takes 1/64 of a teaspoon of gluten to cause intestinal damage to a person with Celiac Disease.

How I Learned About Celiac

Some of you may know that I have a twin sister. She had followed the love of her life to California so he could pursue his music career. Things were going well for him but she was having trouble fitting in with the wives and girlfriends. She was homesick and depressed. She also knew that our mom wasn’t doing well.

For a long time she was having severe heartburn, circles under her eyes, urinary tract infections, fatigue, anxiety, and trouble concentrating.

Before she left for California she had seen a doctor about her heartburn and found out she had significant scarring on her esophagus. She chose to ignore it.

A few years went by and they came back home. When she was pregnant with her first child my mother was at her worst. A week after giving birth my mother passed away. Her physical symptoms became too much to ignore any longer.

MOST COMMON SYMPTOMS 

  • Mouth Sores
  • Eroding Tooth Enamel
  • Back Pain
  • Joint pain/stiffness/swelling
  • Burning in the joints
  • Anemia
  • Low vitamin B12 and D
  • Brittle nails
  • Burning scalp
  • Pale skin
  • Hair loss
  • Headaches
  • Vertigo/Dizziness
  • Weight changes
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Sinus pressure
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Bloating
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain
  • Infertility
  • Miscarriages
  • Brain fog
  • Irritability
  • Short temper
  • Dementia
  • Malnutrition
  • Osteoporosis
  • Pancreatic disease
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Liver disease
  • Diabetes
  • Ataxia- loss of balance, clumsiness due to damage of the nervous system
  • Peripheral Neuropathy- numbness and weakness in the legs, face, arms, feet, and hands
  • Acid reflux

COMMON SYMPTOMS

  • Early menopause
  • Swollen Bladder
  • Leg cramps
  • Muscle spasms
  • Bruising
  • Asthma
  • Bladder Infections
  • Blurred vision
  • Fainting
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • High blood pressure
  • Low blood sugar
  • Night sweats
  • Seizures
  • ADD
  • Anxiety
  • Memory loss
  • Night terrors
  • Suicidal thoughts

So what does all this mean? At first I was like everyone else. I thought that if she ate bread or pasta she would just have problems with her stomach for a few days and that would be it. I was so wrong.

It isn’t until you walk in someone else’s shoes that you truly understand what they go through. It wasn’t until I was on my 6th medication that I told my doctor that my sister had Celiac Disease and asked if it was possible I had it and if so could it be the reason medications were not working.

He looked at me with eyes wide. He told me to get a blood test and biopsy as soon as possible. Unfortunately almost all medications use gluten as a binder. Companies will say that they do not but if it is a generic brand they are not strictly monitored by the FDA.

I came back positive with the blood test and the biopsy. I do not have Celiac like my sister. Mine is more of the Cognitive issues, extremely low white blood cell count, almost no vitamin D, Gallbladder Disease, Chronic Kidney Disease, Early menopause, Osteoporosis, Asthma, Blurred vision, Vertigo, Ataxia, Peripheral Neuropathy, Headaches, Sinus pressure, Hair loss, pale skin, circles under my eyes, brittle nails, back pain, Anemia, some weird IgA Deficiency that no one could really explain but might have to do with the Kidney Failure, and Vitamin D resistant Rickets. I love the last one.

My Bipolar medications probably do not work the way they normally would. I do not absorb anything like a “normal” person. If they have Gluten in them than I’m definitely going to have problems. I also have 1 kidney doing the work of 2. The pharmacy is sick of me asking about my medications because they change distributors constantly. At this point they tell me what I want to hear.

SOCIETY

When I see a celebrity making jokes about this it makes me a little angry. A celebrity chef saying “Eat some pasta already!” doesn’t help to inform the public. She didn’t mind making a profit off of some gluten free recipes after though.

When I see a celebrity going “gluten free” because they think it’s healthier, they will lose weight, or are just jumping on the new “trend” I get a little pissed. I wouldn’t make a choice to live this way. Having to read every label from shampoo to crackers is exhausting. I hardly ever go to restaurants and when I do I usually have to get a side salad. They almost always bring it with croutons even though I tell them I have an allergy. When they bring it back I know they just picked the croutons off. I don’t want to make a big deal out of it so I eat it. I know it’s bad but it’s also embarrassing.

I’ve said it a million times, think before you say something about a subject you may not be completely educated on.

I just read my symptoms and I sound like a real catch. lol

If we keep educating ourselves, listen instead of waiting for our turn to speak, and advocate for those who can’t advocate for themselves, maybe we still have a chance.

 

I REFUSE TO SUPPORT A PERSON WHO WOULD NEVER SUPPORT ME

I find myself writing about topics I said I never would. The time where you could hide your head in the sand has come to an end. My friend W is in for a rude awakening. I called her “The Ostrich”.

When it comes to Donald Trump I am going to pretend it never happened. He is not my peer, if he had his way I would probably be sterilized and sent to an island. No worries Mr. Trump, I can no longer have children due to medical reasons not mental.

I would be seen as the weak Giselle in the herd. The weak are left behind. If you fall back you are the meal. This is I believe the concept in the cutthroat world of business. Mr. Trump will bring this same mentality with him to the White House.

Instead of “No man left behind” it will become “Screw them if they don’t have what it takes”. Pride and Individualism to all.

Get ready. It’s a dangerous time. A man with no morals, no respect for others, and in the control seat. Exactly what our country needed. If I could I would move to ? Who the hell knows anymore.  Dutchie the Chihuahua is way happier than I am.

WHEN YOU WANT TO FEEL

Sometimes when I’m watching a television show I find myself envious of the characters. Couples in love, people with longing or sorrow on their faces. There are times where I can’t feel these emotions in real life. I can feel them through the actors on TV but that’s it.

I have felt great sorrow in my life and longing. I have been loved by my parents and my brother and sister. I return that love. Anytime I loved a person outside of my family it has gone horribly wrong. I have shut off that part of myself for a long time now.

I don’t bother to look at anyone when I venture out into the world. I keep my eyes down. If I engage in conversation it is only with sales people or cashiers.

There are days where I realize what I am doing and a wave of something crashes over me. I will sit in my car, shaking and crying. My brain will replay all the times I’ve been hurt. I’ll tell myself I deserved it, I should’ve done things differently, if only I had lost weight sooner that person would’ve loved me, or I should stay alone. It’s meant to be.

Will it ever end? This constant self loathing? I don’t think so. It’s been here for 43 years why would it end now? Everyone can give advice about therapy and how I am the one that controls how I feel about myself but when you have words drilled into you for so long you believe them.

I also felt like this before I had bad “relationships” or were around people that were happy to tell me I was shit. I sought them out to validate how I felt inside. And they did.

This isn’t a pity party. This is how it is.1979209_903471546381316_2376864659380596718_o