Mornings, Routines, Self Care.

coffee2Mornings.  I just can’t get into them.  I’ve never been a morning person. Working nights messed me up for a while.

The funniest thing about working nights was how I’d wake up and not know where I was or the time. Where are my kids? What are they doing?  What day is it? I remember the first time it happened and since learned it’s common 🙂 But it’s not great for someone who has panic attacks either.

nurseWorking nights was interesting though.  I enjoyed the slower pace though there was always SO MUCH to do…yes the night shift works!  People would assume we sat around doing nothing but dozing off. Funny enough, they schedule everything they can on the night shift to take the load off days.  And it was terrible for my metabolism.  You tend to snack a lot at night to keep you awake.  Then you go home and go to bed and never get enough sleep.

I switched to days.  I did not like getting up early but I’d rush off to work.  There wasn’t a lot of time to think about things….just get ready and run out.  I was usually on time. Sometimes I was early.  But there was no time to feel bad. I was tired, sure.  But I didn’t dread it. I got to work and did my job. I think my co-workers helped too.  I’d often stop for coffee.

Now that I’ve been home the mornings are such a struggle for me.  I just feel so out of it I cannot explain my feelings. Perhaps it’s because I have no schedule.  I have no schedule because I can’t handle it.  I’m not tired.  I just kind of don’t know what to do.

Once the morning moves to about 11am I’m feeling much better.  It’s weird and almost like clockwork. I will then do a little light housework or something.

I take my methelphenidate as soon as i remember.  It does make a difference. My morning dreads will go past 11 if I forget to take it. I do not want to live without this medication. Pretty much my biggest motivation for seeing my pdoc. I mean I need my other meds but….that’s a biggee.

Now.  If I have plans and have to go out, I’m ok.  I go out and forget about my dread. (I’m currently carless for the time being except weekends)

So obviously this means I need a routine and something to do in the morning I guess. Right?  But I cannot motivate myself to do anything really.  Do you see my problem?

coffee3Lately I’ve been getting up, taking care of my dog and then making a coffee. I don’t generally watch tv….so, see? But anyway, coffee. It does seem to help a smidge.  I never noticed any kind of energy from coffee though.  It never seemed to wake me up.  But I wonder if there is something else to it.  I’m sure there is.  It seems to help me feel a little better about just sitting and doing nothing. It raises my mood I think…maybe that’s it. Is coffee known to do that? I should research it. I know I’ve heard before that it’s good for you in moderation and it probably has a bunch of antioxidants in it. I just never believe it coz it’s never sped me up.

Self care….I’m sitting here and thinking, I took a shower yesterday, no need for one today. But I know it’s probably something that would help.  Yet I don’t feel like taking the time.  Which I have an abundance of.  :sigh:

doggie, coffee, shower, 1 load of laundry, tidy bathroom and make bed.  That’s what I’m going to try.

mirrorSpeaking of routines, I want to do a post about night time routines and self care. One thing I’ve been doing is using some relaxing essential oil lotion on my hands and arms. Its like I’m taking time for me.  So why don’t I feel the same about other self care? 😦 It has to be part of being depressed.

During this last depression my bedroom was very untidy. I had some piles of clothes by my side of the bed. My nightstand was littered with water glasses. And I told myself that I just wanted a nice place to get into bed.  So I started there.  I like to have my pj’s nicely under my pillow and ready for me for bed but I’m not consistent.  I have to work on this!

So routines….what are you guys routines? Anything that might help?

 

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Freelance Writing Jobs

Have you guys heard of Fiverr? Basically you are able to offer freelance writing and web based jobs. People can search through ‘gigs’ to find you among thousands.

I used it with my Etsy shop. I had ordered a banner from someone who was supposed to make the banner (better than me) and some other designs for my web store. The girl was terrible and she did not get what I was going for at all, even with upgrading to a better $ package and multiple edits. Finally I gave up and told her it was great, thanks and goodbye.  She just wasn’t getting it. I wasn’t happy with my service but it was cheap.

Anyway, I’ve wondered how I might be able to make some money writing online. I know it’s far fetched. But why can’t I also write an article or post for someone too? Sure I can. So I just went and listed a gig.  A gig is what your offering for services.  In my case, I will write a 500 word article or post for 5.00 with variations making the price from $5-15.00.

So does anyone use fiverr?

 

 

Impulsivity and Shopping and Crafts…

I think I’m a little hypo-manic today. I’m feeling very restless. I went to the thrift store and bought a few things.  I picked up some wooden spoons and a wooden platter because I had seen some beautiful wood burned ones online.  I had a wood burner but I didn’t think I could find it so I hastily went to Michaels and purchased another with a 50% coupon. Thank goodness because I found the old one.  I didn’t have the money and I decided on the spur of the moment as soon as I saw the spoons. Very impulsive.

I spent about an hour playing with it and my stuff isn’t looking anything like what I’m seeing. I know I have to practice a lot before I’ll get good but when I try something and I’m not perfect at it I get very discouraged. I’m  going to have to practice.

Nope, Delete.

So, here’s what I’ve been doing lately. I’ve been writing posts and deciding they are unworthy of posting so I delete them.  smh. Like this one here.  I deleted the whole thing leaving two paragraphs 🙂 twice.

Who reads my drivel? Really 200+ readers? That is pretty amazing. Thank you for following along you guys.  I can’t get over the fact how comforting it is to read about others with the same struggles.

I spent a few days away with my BFF. It was a nice little get away. We spent the time thrifting and went to the Brimfield Antique & Flea Market.  It’s a huge flea market and it was really fun to explore with a like minded friend. We had a wonderful sushi dinner and drinks and got to stay at a nice little hotel.  All courtesy of her. I’m so happy I have her in my life.  She always makes me want to be a better person.  The second day was a rainy mess so thankfully we got the first day in.

I’ve been trying to socialize my dog since we went camping last month.  He did really well with my sons girlfriends dog.  We put him on a run and let her off leash so she could go near him if she wanted to. She is a very well socialized dog because she attends doggy daycare with her mom who works there. She let me try her bark collar which you can set to vibrate to deter barking. It also comes with a beep mode and a shock mode. It stays charged for days and was 30.00 on Amazon.

That’s been working good for his barking.  He usually barks when people walk down the street which isn’t THAT frequent as we live in a suburban neighborhood. But it just effectively stopped his growling (which is usually barking) and he is eagerly watching instead. I highly recommend.

My sister told me that I’m a completely different from five years ago. Five years ago I was not being treated for bipolar officially but was taking lamictal for resistant depression which I had begged to be put on. It absolutely helped with impulse control and I didn’t have any really big manias.  But I was still up and down.  So, that was good to hear.

MIgraines have sucked.  It started when we were away and I’ve had something to do every day since then. It always overwhelms me and thus migraines each day like the last 3. Hopefully they will ease up on the weekend.

I might as well hit post or else I’m going to delete this disjointed post!

 

 

Hobby: Blogging

I’ve always been a huge craft person.  Usually I focus on one at a time but past loves were sewing/quilting/embroidery/knitting/crochet. Now that I’m no longer manic apparently I have no need to work on a project. I never really loved knitting.  I liked the end project and would try to work through it as fast as I could.  Def a fast knitter. I didn’t love the process. I’ve sold a lot of stuff on Etsy…producing in a manic way.  I see it now after Pdoc told me he thought my crafting was manic.

Now that I’m not working I’ve tried a few more hobbies to fill my time.  None lasted.  I tried watercolor painting and lettering. I’m not good at either so I gave up on it. Beside what good is lettering. I wish I could draw but I cannot. Oh, I did teach myself to tat which was frustrating but glad I finally figured it out. I completed one project and don’t wish for another. Enough of that! 🙂

My only steady has been my paint by numbers and I laugh out LOUD cuz it seems so crazy. What? Paint by number seriously.  But unlike manically knitting to get through a project I’m enjoying painting it fairly slowly using only one color at a time.  Throughout the day I will take a half hour or so to do a little.  I know I’m not going to be done in a week. This is a change and I think it’s due to being more stable for sure.

I still have my mama’s group of senior stampin ladies and I have enjoyed making some pretty cards however I get bored fairly quickly.  I’m excited to go do it and then I become overwhelmed.

My mum’s craft room is in her basement.  It’s half of the cellar, all finished and whatnot.  Three walls have small shelves and they are covered in rubber stamps.  I’m not kidding when I say 1000+.  It’s like a store.  Her friends bring their stuff too but they have literally everything possibly.  The other day I asked her if she had a feather stamp because I hadn’t seen one which is because there are loads of stamps.  She knows exactly what she has and produced it for me.  They have books of papers, many, many stamp pads, cutting station, cricket thing, cuttlebugs…..all the punches you could want… paints, chalks, envelopes! LOL  Making a few cards at my sisters was no where as fun as my moms because she has all the toys. Anything I can find on pinterest she likely has all the supplies.

But I’m still looking for something else to do. I got some carving things for camping and I wasn’t successful with it.  I think you need to be good at sculpting to do it. And drawing.  I can’t do either.  I’ve never tried sculpting but I relate it to drawing and anatomy and I suck at that.  I still want to play around with it cuz it is fun.  But I can’t seem to pay attention to any tutorials. I need to be able to master something.

I walked the isles of Michaels craft store the other day looking for inspiration. Wood section, leather work (tried it), wood burning (tried it). There was clay and of course jewelry stuff (which I’ve made before but I always try to think of a way to produce and sell my stuff).

So…anyone have any neat crafty kind of hobbies out there?

Migraine Life

me.

Recently I started a new and different medication for my chronic migraines. We've been through the gambit. I've tried a lot of them. Recently started a new medication noted for off label migraine treatment. I was hopeful.  I had been asking my neurologist to try it, then my migraine specialist, PCP more than once, my Pdoc….Nobody cared to do this. It's a psyche drug. I wasn't afraid to ask them either.  I am never afraid to bring up a medication that I've read about that might be beneficial too.

When I first began reading about it they had been using it for a few years anyway. It causes the brain in someway to be less excitable.  Something to do with glutamate. I dunno. But it had promise and was working for some. Maybe it's just a premonition, intuition…something told me that this sounded like it could help.  Thus…asking my doctors since it's a different class that I've tried before.

Anyway, cut to 5-6 years later when I mention it again to my PCP as we struggle to find a preventative med to help me.  Suddenly she tells me they are using it for migraines and fibromyalgia now. Now she has no problem with a trial of it.  Yessssssss.

The first month was very successful. I had about half the number of migraines normally which are chronic…which are most days of the month. So this was awesome.

I slowly titrated the dose as instructed and the migraines seem to resist the medication. They began to increase and I was noticing that the minor headaches I had before were no longer staying little and they were turning into full blown migraines that weren't responding to my acute treatments..ie triptans.Image result for vintage  labels cannabis

So, as things will have it I started to be lax about taking that morning dose.  After the second day I noticed things seemed better with the night dose.  Usually my body is resistant to meds and I seem to require higher doses.  This time I was surprised that a slight decrease in meds seems to be helping.

Now I'm back to how it was when I was beginning the med and it seems to be working again. I am hopeful. It is the first medication that has brought on noticeable

Rude People

Image result for clip art rude person shop

Now that I’m being treated for bipolar disorder I have a higher threshold for rude people.  I wasn’t like that always though.  Once when the kids were younger I flipped out on a ice cream scooper who got my order wrong.  I never thought much about it until my niece brought up the story how I made the ice cream girl cry.  From that day on I have been the nicest customer ever.  I am polite, I say thank you so much.  I never bitch like I did that day.  I’m thankful for her pointing out to me.  I don’t want people to see me as RUDE.

Today I went to dunks to get an iced coffee.  The two people behind the counter….a young person about 18 and an older lady in her 60’s.  They didn’t acknowledge me as I stood in front of the counter. The old lady was fiddling with some paper for the machine while the other just looked at me blankly.  Finally after she fixed the machine she finally asked may I help you in an annoyed voice.  I kept my cool and simply asked for my coffee, thinking again of my niece. When the younger girl brought me my coffee I looked at her and said thank you.  And she didn’t even reply! To then which I said. “you’re welcome. Usually that’s what comes after thank you.” and she snapped out of a fog and said oh, you’re welcome.

Image result for clip art  holding door openIt annoys me when I hold the door for someone and they don’t acknowledge me or say thank you.  SO rude!! And I can’t count the number of times someone has let the door close right in front of me instead of just holding it for a moment.  UGH.

Rant ova.

Stress, Anxiety and Cognition.

I had been working as a nurse for about 4 years before I changed jobs and landed in an office nursing job. I was working odd shifts and the regular schedule of an office was something I was looking for.  I was looking for something less fast paced because of my anxiety. I worked for an MD who was really great. Some of my duties included rooming patients, vital signs, some medical history info, med info and the like.  I’m sure you’ve ran into one of me at one of your doctor appointments. I called in prescriptions and worked on insurance things.

Since this was a totally different type of nursing job I was learning new things. I had difficulty remembering what I was supposed to ask my patients.  In between their answer and inputting their responses I’d forget and have to ask again. I might forget how tall they were so I’d have to remeasure. I might forget to have them change into a gown. Sometimes I’d forget which room they were in. Medication calculations….and I was never sure of myself, ever. I couldn’t memorize anything.  If I were being given new instructions or shown a new job to do I would blank out and find myself starring out at the person thinking of something else. I’d ask to have it repeated and pretend to understand or know what I was supposed to do.

Because I was a good employee, kind, caring, willing to work I was given passes. But it never went away. I passed this all off to A.D.D and even got treatment for it which possibly made my anxiety worse.  Who knows. I was finally diagnosed with Lyme and it has made me wonder if the Lymes got into my brain…:sigh:

I ended up quitting my job after 5+ years in a manic, paranoid period. I was sure that everyone was against me. As my depression worsened I was sure that something was seriously wrong with me and decided between the plethora of health issues like migraines, irritable bowel syndrome, fibro, lyme and anxiety that I was going to try and get myself better.  I knew working was causing my body so much stress it was taking a tole. Stress was the single biggest factor in my migraines which was as bad as they could get. I’d be getting migraines 6 days a week.

I filed for SS disaility about 6 months after I left my job.  Social security did not accept my new pyche APRN since she wasn’t a MD so they sent me to a psychologist.  At this point I knew that I had bipolar. I learned about the cognition problems that can occur with extreme anxiety or depression. I know I have both of those.

She informed that she wouldn’t be able to tell me if I was approved or not for SS disability.  That was her first statement. I was surprised she was so reserved and seemed very judgmental as she went over my meds with me.

Her first question was “why do you feel like you cannot work any longer”.  For some reason I never expected that question so I hadn’t prepared an answer at all. I tried to explain in my stupid dumb way that I wasn’t able to function at work and I was overwhelmed and incredibly depressed. I tried to explain how I’d forget which rooms the patients were in or tell the doctor the wrong room AGAIN. I told her how I’d forget words or situations.  She observed the same when I would tell her I couldn’t remember.

The exam continued on and she learned of my manic episodes. I tried to make sure she understood the extremes of it and I was embarrassed.  Finally, she was the first person I explained ALL of my mania to. She asked about therapy and why didn’t I do it. Why didn’t my psyche nurse or GP recommend therapy.  I explained how embarrassing this was and I didn’t have it in me to do.  Then….I remembered I went to therapy.  She noddded. I said (again!) I forgot but I did go to therapy (briefly) years ago when the manic symptoms began but I didn’t continue and didn’t realize at the time that I had bipolar disorder.

When we got to the memory/cognition part of the exam at the end I was nervous.  She asked me to count backwards by 7’s from 100.  I know so many people who say they couldn’t do it either.  I had tears streaming down my face and I wouldn’t look at her, closing my eyes and counting on my fingers.  When I knew I was wrong I looked at her and said, please….and she said no….two more numbers and I’d have to try and go back counting and it was a mess.

At the end of the exam I apologized to her for my tears and she assured me that she gets that all the time. I mentioned something else and told her I couldn’t remember the word I was looking for…..and she point blank asked me if I have trouble like that often. DUH.

I never had to go to my scheduled MD visit for my migraines because I was approved with a mood disorder alone. I found out fairly quickly and since I had been out of work I was awarded back pay to the time I quit my job unexpectedly. I think it was all due to my lack of or decrease in my cognition.

These days I’m not working and it’s really no better.  I talk without thinking sometimes (I think that’s what I do!).  The other day I was at my friends house admiring her new puppy.  Her chickens were out and they started to follow the puppy…….I said look! The kittens are following him!  I mean CHICKENS.  I switch words like cold for hot.  I don’t know if this is dyslexia or what it is. But I’ve done it since I started that job.

Of course this all makes me nervous thinking about dementia and Alzheimer disease. Or Parkinson’s.  Or anything I read about with memory issues. I do believe that Alzheimer’s is more of forgetting HOW to do stuff.  How to drive or what a fork is for.

At least that’s what I tell myself.  I’m just tryin not to add to the stress. 🙂

On being a Fraud

I came across an article online and it caused some uncomfortable feelings to be stirred up.  The disorder is called Imposter syndrome.  It’s a concept describing individuals who are marked by an inability to internalize their accomplishments and a persistent fear of being exposed as a “fraud”even though these people are competent.

It got me thinking about how I would always worry I’d be found out I was an incompetent nurse. That I was just stumbling along in my job and I didn’t know what the hell I was doing. I didn’t deserve to be a nurse even though I completed my BSN degree. I felt like that in school too and it continued onto my job. Continually worried that my preceptor would deem me unsafe and incompetent.

My anxiety would cause me to forget a lot. I’d have to have things repeated again.  I was scattered and unable to truly concentrate. I’d make little mistakes here and there. Mistakes are normal but what happens when you give the wrong medication accidentally this time or calculate a dosage incorrectly? I also have a difficult time when I have people watching me complete a task because I’m afraid I’ll mess up in front of them. Every two years when we’d complete CPR training I’d worry I wouldn’t pass the test.  The videos we’d watch were so quick but I SHOULD ALREADY KNOW THIS INFORMATION. Guess what? I’d always have to go back and fix a question or two because I got too many wrong.  And never mind having to perform in front of the instructors. I always got through that by the skin of my teeth.

Despite my worries I always got really great performance reviews. I did a lot of things really good.  I tend to down play those and bully myself about all the wrong things I did.

Happy Campers

We’ve come back from vacation with fully recharged batteries (or something like that). It was a week of not doing a whole lot but being in nature without electricity and limited electronics.  I loved being able to read a few blogs here and there but I really need go catch up! I reached 200 follows! I’ve said it before! Who really reads this drivel!?!

As usual after a week of camping my house is just a little disorganized. I’m trying to roll with it.  I’m starting to chill out on feeling that I’ve gotta be doing something.  It’s coming up on the 2 year I’ve been out of work.  I’ve only recently have stabilized.  This has been such a long road. I think this combo of meds is beginning to work.

So hubby and I were able to enjoy a week in a gorgeous wooded camp ground.  We took frequent and leisurely walks with the dog around all kinds of trails. We took him swimming. ❤ Such joy.  It was just simply us throwing sticks into the lake for him to retrieve while we sat on a birch log.  I will remember this simple moment that was so peaceful. We went mushroom hunting a few times.  Yes we really did.  He wouldn’t let us eat any of the mushrooms though I know nothing of what I’m doing, something about it was begging me to try!

My migraines are holding steady.  New migraine med is doing an ok job. The intensity of some of the migraines is less but none of the meds I have to treat my migraines are working. I’ve had an overall reduction. Not as much as I would have hoped but still it’s better.

My mood has been pretty stable. My husband noted I’ve not had any manic meltdowns where i screamed psychotically at him in some time. True, I’ve been much more depressed than manic at all since I left my job but I’ve been feeling better recently. Seems like the increase in my antidepressant is working. I’m so thankful.  I hope I don’t slip come fall.

Now, off to read all of ya’lls blogs!