Queen of Procrastination

We’re leaving for camping soon. My husband is supposed to be home from work about now and then we’re to finish packing what wasn’t packed in the truck yesterday and head out.  I thought I’d get up this morning and thoroughly and methodically begin to pack.  Meds, toiletries and clothing, crafts and books.  Still have to pack my husbands clothes which are minimal.

I freak out when we leave and expect the house to be spotless….yet here i am on my computer frantically typing out a new post before we leave.  I don’t think I’d enjoy posting from my phone but I might try it.

toothpaste…..see I forgot to pack toothpaste.  Good think we’re still home.

Looking so forward to another wonderful week camping. Woods, walks, camp fires mushroom hunting 🙂 Me and my hub getting to spend some quality time together.  I’m happy that one of our sons will be coming up with us this time.  Now that he works full time he was really looking forward to getting a real weeks vacation. My babes are all growing up.  sniff sniff… ❤

Hate Seeing My Child Struggle

growin upThis morning was no better for my son.  He had a full on panic attack and cried.  My heart broke.  We never want our kids to struggle. He still said he can’t do this but got ready and went to work.  His girl friend stayed over to help get him off this morning and I was surprised when he broke down in front of her.  He feels a lot of pressure from me and my husband and also girlfriends family.

I told him if he hated it that much he could tell them that the job wasn’t for him and he can’t do it.  Give a notice.  Or if that much a struggle, tell them I so sorry I can’t do this, it’s causing me to have panic attacks and again….I’m so sorry.

I’m definitely supportive but don’t want to give him a pass to quit his first full time job.  He says it’s the early morning but I remember anxiety from the past  two jobs last year that he only stayed briefly at before deciding to focus on school.  And being one with anxiety myself I know how hard it is.

I hate that my kids inherited my anxiety.  All of them have had issues with it but have worked through them without medication.  I’m definitely one for medication so if they needed a medication to help them through it I’m all for it.

I also hate that my depression led me leaving my beloved job. I know they know I’m on disability for anxiety/depression/migraine. I don’t want them to feel like it’s a choice.  It’s something that I had to come to after years of working. But part of me feels like a lazy slob and I’m not setting a good example.

He said he was doing a little better after a couple of hours.  He hasn’t been trained yet so that’s another glitch. He didn’t eat anything here but I hope he got something on the way in.  He probably didn’t feel like eating. I know I didn’t.

His girlfriend is going to bring him a lunch this afternoon again. He loved seeing her midway through work so it’s nice of her to make the trip to see him.

Commenting and Such

I’ve spent the last couple of days home and found myself reaching for my computer in boredom. I really need to find a few hobby or something.  I have a pile of books but haven’t had the desire to read them.

Instead I’ve been reading lots of blogs. And my favorites are the day to day goings on kinds. I like following the bloggers who tell the stories about their life. I like being able to follow the characters along. I can relate to so many stories of mental illness.  It really helps me feel like I’m not alone and bipolar disorder or migraines are real deal things and I’m not just a baby.

I find myself often commenting and I hope those of you who I do comment on frequently don’t think I’m a stalkerish creep.

 

uuuh stressed

"Look, son! Your birthday present...flying lessons!"My son started a new job.  It sounded great….for an early morning person.  I get it that he has to grow up though, though.  He’s just terrible in the morning. High school was not fun. He goes to bed late.  Six am comes early. But full time, good pay, out at 3 pm. I did question his ability to be up early in the am and he assured me it would be fine. Ahem.

He was really grumpy this morning and said he didn’t know how long he could do this for.  This is second morning.  His girlfriends sister got him the job. She told him he better not abruptly quit if he didn’t like it because she put in a good word for him and was hired on the spot. I like the added pressure of the girlfriend and not just mum and dad. Even his girl friend has a job.

I spent today with my stomach in knots worrying about how his day was going.  I texted him mid morning asking if the day was getting better and all I got was a “No” I avoided further texting him and felt it best to leave him be.

He had one job through high school for a year but left to focus on school.  He had two other jobs for very short stints too but he seemed to get overwhelmed very easy and had a couple of panic attacks.  My poor boy takes after his mum. He does have a history of anxiety.

When I learned he was stopping over to see his girl friend on the way home I figured the day might not have been so terrible.  He came in with a smirk on his face.  It wasn’t so bad. I told him wait til he gets his first full time check! I think he will see how having money can be a nice thing. Plus it will take some time to get into a routine of things.  Soon enough he’ll be waking up early on his days off.

It’s time to grow up baby boy.  Now’s your time to fly…

 

Official Diagnosis

I’ve never asked my pdoc what my diagnosis is.  Or make that diagnosis’s.  I know I have anxiety, depression, bipolar something.  But I didn’t want to ask him and he never came out with it. I didn’t want to seem like one of those people who gets wrapped up in a diagnosis.

After I went to my disability assessment and was granted disability I was brave enough to ask the nice woman who sat behind the counter.  “Would you possibly be able to tell me my diagnosis?”  She said simply affected mood disorder…and there might be a few other things.

I’ve tried to diagnosis myself. Obviously! Don’t we all. I’ve read lots of medical jargon about mental health. Nevermind I can’t read a passage in a book without having to reread it several times and then I forget.  Nevermind I can’t concentrate on anything. But I’m reading scholarly articles.

psyche7Then I started to watch lectures on youtube.  So much better for me as I can concentrate better on a speaker. Have you guys listened to Dr. Robert Sapolsky?  Standford I believe.  Lovely hippie, reminds me of Jerry Garcia. He can give a good lecture and keep me entertained. His depression lecture was really good. It’s amazing there is access to stuff like this! I think I have a little crush on him. 🙂 According to Wikipedia he’s an author and professor of neurology and neurological sciences and neurosurgery, at Stanford University.  He also studies baboons in Kenya. There are a bunch of his lectures on youtube.

I wasn’t sure if I was bipolar 1 or 2.  Before I went to my pdoc, my GP agreed that it seemed like I was probably bipolar.  She knew the back story of my manic behavior, abruptly quitting my job then combined with my depression it was pretty obvious.  I was impulsive, destructive, angry. I was acting out in ways that I’m not proud of.  I hurt my marriage. I was desperate to fix things and figure out why I was so messed up but I couldn’t do it myself.

We went on vacation before I left my job for good. I was SO paranoid. I was texting my 2 friends from work, desperate to know if my bosses were talking about me.  I was sure I was going to lose my job (highly intuitive!) I took my dog on long walks in the woods where i bawled and prayed out loud asking God to please help me. Also note Dr. Saplosky has a lecture on spiritually and mental health which I need to rewatch. They can be intertwined.

Originally I thought Bipolar 1 because I really think my mania was over the top.  After reading about hypomania it seemed much more severe and all encompassing.  I felt out of control and I didn’t know how to stop myself from being so destructive. But the destructive stuff felt good.

After I first met with my doc, he told me I did have bipolar…probably 2 with more depression. I can see where he was going with it. I was the most depressed I had ever been when I first met him. I cried through our first visits.  I was so tearful, sad. I was not in my right mind.

psyche4I was afraid of sleeping. I was afraid of ghosts.  My dog was retching one night and I was afraid a spirit got into him (SMH) and was so panicked.  I woke my husband. I was sure several weird happenings were due to ghosts. I’d have to have lights on to sleep. Looking back now it seemed as though I was crazy.  I asked him if this was psychosis and he said yes.  Definitely unusual thoughts.

Since I’ve been on my mood stabilizers and whatnots and seeing my pdoc I’ve not experienced manic episodes like before.  But now I’m stuck in the depressive side of things. I think I may have had a few hypomanic times since.  I wonder if I’m rapid cycling (Dr. Migraine reporting for duty.)

Recently I asked him what my official diagnosis was….Bipolar 2 or 1.  Biplolar 1 for sure, classic mania he said.  I said Bipolar 1 and added with psychosis?  The nurse in me was pretty sure I was experiencing psychosis when I was in the midst of this past depressive episode.  He explained that yes, that was my diagnosis.

psyche2It’s good for me to know.  I need to educate myself on my disorder.  I need to know that it’s very serious. I can try and educate my family who all know I do have bipolar disorder though it’s not like we speak of it all the time.  I want my husband to be able to read about it and TRY to explain to my mom why I am the way I am. She doesn’t get it, doesn’t get the extent or seriousness of it.  She doesn’t get how sometimes I am not able to function. She believes it but just thinks I’m moody, depressed at times. A pill can fix it. Or counseling!  That will do it!!!!!

bipolar medication nervine vintage ads

Today I’m doing ok.  We’re tweaking my meds and I’m finding some relief. I know that I might go up and I might go down some but I’ll make it through. My pdoc is amazing.  He’s willing to go out of the box.  He trusts me and listens and he doesn’t brush things off.  I really am blessed to find him. I don’t have a therapist and while I know he isn’t the same, he does offer counsel to me.

 

 

 

 

 

House guests…

Today was the last day my m-i-l was here with us.  We deposited her back to my bro-in-laws today and I’m thankful for that.  I’m thankful I don’t have a lot of overnight visitors. I’m just cut out to be a host I guess.  My parent’s are wonderful hosts and entertain often. Me…I’d rather not.

We dropped off Mom tonight and had a lovely dinner with the in-laws.  I always love to spend time with my nephews and it was good to see them ❤ Very handsome and smart! 🙂 I’m a proud Auntie.

We finally got home and I’ve collapsed into my bedroom chair.  I’m ready to be done with guests. She wasn’t high maintenance but just having the extra person here stressed me out.

I’m feeling extra thankful because she’s 85 now.  Her memory isn’t great.  But this lady travels solo across the country a couple of times a year to see her boys. She lives alone, does remarkably well.  Sometimes I complain about her but all in all, I’m a lucky girl. I’ve known younger folks who do not do as well as she does. I hope we have her around a lot longer.

On House Guests and Diamonds

We currently have a guest staying with us for about a week.  I don’t have a large house so it’s difficult to escape off to myself.  Even if I could I wouldn’t feel right leaving her 85 year old self to sit alone in our house. But I can’t stand having to be on call 24/7 to my mother in law. I just feel as though I need to visit with her mostly so that involves hearing the same stories over again.  She likes to talk. She likes to talk about her other sons and their children. It’s a little annoying, especially for my own children.

I’ve never been terribly close with her, perhaps shes growing more dear to me as she gets older. As a mother in law goes, she’s been nothing but kind to me. She never oversteps.  I will give her that.  I will learn from her example! She never butts in or criticizes me or my kids. I’m sure she has bitten her tongue many times when I know my own mother wouldn’t have and been right to do so.

At Christmas my sister in law blurted out that she had my mother in laws MOTHER’S engagement ring my mouth nearly dropped on the floor.  She has NO tact.  There was no need to tell me.  I would have never known. But apparently she had given grammie F’s engagement ring which was hurtful…not going to lie. Their oldest son does a lot for her financially and again, I’m used to all the love for the other families. In the old days before I was being treated for bipolar this would have been difficult to do. I know I would have been much more angry.  But now I can calmly let it go. I know why she did it and it’s ok.

As it turns out I learned that instead of Grammie’s engagement ring I was going to get Mom’s own engagement ring!  I was SO excited. My own engagement had been stolen so this made me feel wonderful. It’s a beauty of a ring, 3 stones of sparkly old mine cut diamonds with gold prongs. I love it so much, even a bit more than the original.

I love heirlooms and I love the other jewelry that’s been passed to me as well. So far she’s done really well at passing onto me pieces that she knows I’ll love. My faves are the art deco pieces and the lovely gold bangles.  I really need to wear them more. I’ve never been a bracelet girl.  Perhaps I just need to get used to them.

International Cat Day

I heard it through the grapevine (thank you Amybelle) that it was international cat day. Seeing as how I’m really trying to be a better cat person I decided it was best to dedicate a post to my 2 kitty cats.

Truth be told, I’m a dog person. It’s not my fault.  My parents never allowed a cat. So I never had any experience with cats until I met my husband.  He had always had cats..never dogs!

I was taken to them immediately.  I wanted to hold them, pat them, touch them, brush them.  Yes, I’m an adult!:-) One of the cats I remember had an infected tooth when we met.  I decided she stunk from her drool and we’d wash her up.  This was a siamese/tonkanese girl named Tiffany.  She especially did not like being washed up or near the water so she never forgave me after that.  She’d never trust me again. :sigh: She was so vocal and loved to talk.

We ended up inheriting one of husbands parents cats. I was a new cat momma and i was (and still am) sometimes concerned with their behavior.  Don’t they sleep too much? How much are they supposed to eat? You let them go outside? But the cars. Can they have cat nip? Why don’t they like the toys I get for them?  Can you really give them too much catnip?

After the first inheritance passed away due to old age we eventually rescued 4 other family members over time. None seemed to be  especially enraptured with me. They’d take me if I’d feed them but where was my lap cat? All I wanted was a lap cat to sit on my lap while I’m knitting. One that i didn’t have to go pick up and retrieve which they always love so much anyway.

Our older boy cat was raised to be held.  When I got him I was working nights and I’d take the kitten to bed with me when I got home from work.  He’d sleep with me and ever since loves to be cuddled to sleep.  He’s a weirdo and loves to be towel dried. He is allowed to go out and is possessive of his street known to chase and fight off other cats who’d dare to wander over.  You’d never know he’d be that way as he is the friendliest cat always walking up to you for a pet.

Our newest baby is just about 2.  She’s a sweet lil calico girly.  She mews ‘nooooo’ sometimes when I pick her up.  Ok, a lot of the time.  And I thought she was underweight which she seemed to be for a lot of time until the vet said…..um…she’s a little porker. She’ll sit near me or next to me but doesn’t really like to be held. She loves to have her front legs stretched out when she’s on her back.

At my house I’m the keeper of the catnip.  I like to get it and give it to my babies.  Usually I hide it coz I try to make myself the favorite (doesn’t work).  I also hide it coz my dog will steal it.  If I’m giving some to the cats, I’ll give some to him and he loves it.  It never fails when I invest in a large container of it he will find it and eat it all.

 

 

Camping Adventures

camp

We went camping this past week. It was an excellent trip.  Camping centers me. It doesn’t sound super eventful but it felt like such a luxury to have all day with my husband.

We were able to meet up with our friend who were camping at the same place which was awesome. I adore spending what little time we have together.  I’ve always wanted friends who we could hang out together, do little trips with.  Now that our kids are grown is a great time to find that friendship.  Our little foursome just clicks.

It was amazing to relax at the fire not doing a damn thing all together. When we are together we often don’t have kids with us.  It’s such a weird feeling not to have to worry about having kids/stuff to deal with. Those times I feel like a real empty nester. I have to remind myself that I’m really not.

After our friends left our son and his girlfriend spent the week with us and I feel so lucky to be able to have had that week with them(him).  It’s a new relationship for my young man and he is in love with his girl.  I was thrilled when he wanted to bring her with us. In years past he and his brothers had their own tent.  Now he shared it with his girl friend.

The rest of the week was spent just doing nothing.  Every few hours we’d take the dog for a walk. He looooved being able to use our retractable leash and walk ahead of us while we chatted.

I spent hours working on a freaking paint by number.  It looked overwhelming when I got it.  I figured I’d just do a little and then get sick of it but surprisingly it kept me busy and I loved filling in the tiny little areas.  It also took lots of concentration for me because I mix up numbers and letters all the time. Paint by number isn’t probably the best idea for someone with ADD.  There was 7’s and before you know it I was painting L’s too. So it was a little challenging and mind numbing and I thoroughly enjoyed it. If you squint your eyes real hard it looks good.  I have no thoughts to hang it up. Whatsoever.

But true to bipolar fashion I came home and began searching for paint by number kits and hints and tips. I bought a second already…it’s turning into a thing!!!

reading_tent_colorI also brought 3 books with me.  I found them at the thrift store.  I’m not a reader. I can read a page and forget what I read. I have to re-read a lot. But I read one whole book. I couldn’t put it down.  I was so happy to have read and enjoyed a book I began to read the next one which was not nearly as engrossing so I abandoned it.  But! I went back to the thrift store and picked up 4 “new” books.

So, I’m going to try to start reading. Besides being good for my cognition, it will also help me pass the time when I have no idea what to do with myself. I spent good parts of a few days reading and it felt great. I just need to read books that engross me.

All in all, it was a really relaxing time spent with my husband.  We got to have meals with the kids and it was just nice to reconnect with each other.  I didn’t have any bouts of anxiety and the new migraine med we are trying is actually helping I CANNOT BELIEVE IT.  I’ve had 5 migraines in 21 days.

I’m looking forward to our next trip in an month!

 

Depriving My Children of Luxury Vacations

Image result for travel clip artI’ve often worried that my children were lacking something for not getting grand vacations every year. There hasn’t been European travel, tropical locations or cruises. Or lake house or beach homes. We’ve been to Disney once. Nobody was too excited at the time. My daughter readily admits to being angsty and wishes more than anything to go back to Disney now that she’s an adult.  I wish I could do it again before everyone is married but in the mean time being on disability means we have to let go of things.

I don’t know where I get the vacation inadequacy.  My parents never really took us anywhere for vacations either and I’ve never really thought much about it at all. I am just fine and don’t feel like my childhood was less than great.  We took day trips here or there and once we drove to visit friends in a few states over.  Now that my brother and I are grown my parents have done more than a little traveling and they don’t feel guilty about it. Certainly they shouldn’t.  They’ve earned their retirement.

Image result for vacation  clip artMy husbands family went camping every summer.  They were both teachers with the summers’ off meaning month long trips all over the US. There are funny stories about taking a cat one year and the family getting caught in some rapids with the cat in a canoe.  There was a scorpion sting that was especially memorable.  Fun times 😉

A month is a long time for a camping trip in my opinion, though!  Especially with three boys. All the packing and clothes and supplies. I can imagine boredom setting in, the fights.  But what an education they got traveling, besides learning all of their camping skills. They learned to entertain themselves, thus developing a deep love to read. Funny enough my husband is the only one of his siblings to still camp to this day. Also, I don’t wanna brag by my husband is the smartest person I know. =)

We’ve camped for vacations since my kids have been babies. They’ve grown up with it and I take for granted all the wonderful memories made then. What I need to remember is that those memories are just as good as the memory of a fancy vacation. They got to bring friends, hang at the lake, bike, tell secrets, make fires, s’mores.  We’ve spotted owls, went mushroom hunting, made terrariums, picked wild berries.

This year my son is bringing his girlfriend for the first time.  He was very excited to get to camp last night. She hasn’t camped so it’s new to her and he seems kind of proud to show her around. It will be fun to spend time with both of them. I’m delighted that he is wanting her to see how he grew up and showing her he likes to spend time with us as a family.

Image result for camping clip artCamping for us is not glamping.  There is no big RV.  We gave up our camper and now use tents. It makes things easier…yet harder. Easier in the way of not having to store a camper,  registering the thing.  Harder because it’s nice to be able to store kitchen ware and camping supplies in the camper so no need to pack them up.

I do bring all regular  linens.  No sleeping bags.  We do have air mattresses, a feather bed, many quilts. We have a lovely screen porch, my husband sets up a nice little cooking station. It becomes home for two weeks.

My son and GF arrived last night and it rained this morning.  I’m always afraid someone will be bored camping…especially in the rain.  I, however love the rain at night.  It’s relaxing to fall asleep to the sounds. I don’t mind reading or napping while we wait it out. She just told me she brought her jewelry supplies and she wouldn’t be bored in the rain. Perfect, just the kind of girl I like 🙂

They just got home from a vacation with her family at a lake house.  When I texted him I was jealous but I still like camping better I was delighted he said he did too! ❤