Danger and Debauchery

I flew alone to Philadelphia on my own one Thursday afternoon for a weekend.  I saw the SSDI psychologist very quickly jot that down in my exam.  I know why NOW.  I just didn’t know then.   This is a huge red flag.

I had been wanting to go to this big rock show but I didn’t have anyone to go with. Thanks to the internet I was connected with this other local girl who was going.  We both knew some people that were going to be there.

Flights were so cheap I decided to go.  I told my husband the truth, I really wanted to go to this show. I told him I had “met” this other lady from two cities over and she seemed really nice on the phone. We’d meet up in Philadelphia, see the show and friends and share a hotel room. I convinced him she was a friend of a friend of the group and it would be just fine. Music lovers take care of their own! (I do believe this to be ultimately true).

Her friends were saying the same thing.  You don’t know this girl you’re meeting up with. You’re sharing a hotel room with her?  She reassured them as I did there was no need to worry and music friends take care of their own.  See?

We didn’t have the same flights so I was waiting for this stranger at the gate in Philly. She told me she would be wearing a hat. Thank God we hit it off immediately.

I’m not going to lie, there was drinking and debauchery.  It was a fun time.  Today she is one of my dearest friends.

I know now that I was completely manic at the time.  I would NEVER do this now that my mania is stable.  She could have been anybody.  I was certain that she was a good person from our emails and phone call.  It could have been a very dangerous situation. I could have put myself in harms way.  My intuition told me that things would be fine though. And I have really good intuition. Truth!

Now that my mania is stable we’re off to see another show this summer. It’s a lift I need and something to look forward to.

Am I Really Anonymous?

When I started this blog I knew I wouldn’t be advertising it to friends and family or on social media.  I casually mentioned to my husband and BF I was writing a migraine blog. Husband was “uhhuh, that’s nice dear.” 🙂

As I began writing it became clear that I was not going to be able to not write about my mental illness. It’s one thing for an acquaintance to come across my blog on migraines but I feel completely different about my mental health.  Although I’m keeping it private, nothing is on the internet so I’m closely guarding myself. I don’t want to feel over exposed.

I love and admire the honesty I’ve read on the blogs I’ve been following. I underestimated how it would be to be able to connect with others going through the same things as me.

There are millions of blogs out there, right?  Occasionally I worry that my doctor would come across this. What do you guys think?  Has anyone ever found your blog?  Am I being paranoid?  It’s pretty possible 😉






Gettin’ Better Every Day

Since I left my job, my physical symptoms I was experiencing have gotten a little better from the reduction of chronic stress. I used to go to work sick all the time. My IBS was constantly flaring. My fibro and/or Lyme pain kept me awake many nights. Migraines were chronic and daily.

What was worse than the chronic complaints of pain though is the decline of my cognitive skills from chronic stress, anxiety and mood swings.  My memory is terrible. Simple math skills can be difficult.  I can no longer spell or write much more than basic sentences. I have a hard time expressing my ideas in person and on paper. My word recall is terrible. I thought writing this blog would help challenge me in this way and so far it has 🙂

Also, today was better than yesterday.


From Nurse To Disabled

The lifestyle in which I live now is such a contrast to working full time.  I worked in a busy medial office. I still refer to myself a a nurse, incidentally.  I guess I like the title even though I’m not working now.

I’m still not used to being home.  I feel like I’ve got to be doing something and then feel bad when I’m not. I feel like being home should have cured my depression but it hasn’t. So I feel guilty about that. That’s the depression talking.  I know it.

The other day I was introduced to someone new and she asked what I did for work.  I thought for a minute and said I’m a homemaker and it felt good.  I’m getting better.




My Panic Attacks

I can recall my first panic attack vividly. I had a long history of anxiety but never a panic attack until this night.  My youngest was a year old, 1999.

I had a migraine all day. By night I put my little guys to bed and took some excedrin.  I made myself a cup of tea thinking that additional bit of caffeine would help. I had wanted to stay up and watch the Barbara Walters 20/20 interview with Monica Lewinsky.

After the interview I went to bed with my migraine in tact and started panicking. As I laid in bed I began to get this awful feeling of dread.  My heart began to pound.  I woke my husband up and told him something was very wrong with me, I thought I was having a heart attack, aneurysm or stroke from my migraine. I stayed up most of the night trying to calm myself with meditation. It never occurred me to me that this was a panic attack. It feels so real.

The next day I immediately called my doctor as soon as they opened. She had me come right in. After examining mes she diagnosed me with a panic attack.  She was right on with that one.  Now if she only caught the Lyme disease…but that’s another story.

Now I take an occasional low dose of a PRN anti-anxiety med if I need it.  I’m on daily medication to prevent the attacks. It seems to help.  And avoiding too much caffeine which probably triggered that first attack!



Today seems to be a good day so far. I got up later than I’d have liked but actually did a few quick chores before going to Lowes and Michaels. Rarely do I stop at more than one place if I’m out. It feels exhausting to do errands.  WHY can’t I be like normal folks who can work a full day and do a couple of errands too?

I went to Lowes because I wanted to get some annuals to plant. There were none. Nothing.  Ok, I exaggerate slightly.  I found one 12 pack of zinnia’s.   Cosmos and zinnias are my best loved annuals and I always plant them every year. I always wait til after Memorial Day because my husband insists that’s whats best. Then I will possibly procrastinate a week or so.

My mom plants her annuals well before May 30th.  I planted them for her two weeks ago. 🙂 Her annuals always take off because she plants so early.  So this year I’m getting them into the ground asap.  We shouldn’t have a frost.  (I hope)


Losing Control

When I go to my primary care doctors it’s not unusual for me to cry.  She is wonderful and kind but we are not in control of my illness(es).  I cry while saying I wasn’t depressed.  I didn’t know what was wrong.

I feel so vulnerable when I go to my doctors.  Always. I’ve explained the whole thing, gave you all my symptoms, we’ve established the diagnosis. Please help me, please fix this.  I can’t imagine what someone with a terminal illness or illness far more serious than me feels like. 😦

I wish I could control my migraines. Whatever I’m doing isn’t working. We try this, we try that. I look into something else. As silly as it sounds, it feels like a failure when we try something and it doesn’t work.  I feel like another failure when I have to ask for a new refill (again) of my scripts. I can’t control them.

Bipolar is becoming a beast to control.  So far I’ve failed a bunch of meds and none have worked on my depression. We increased my prozac a tiny bit and I think it might be helping a smidgen.  Much less anxiety, anyway.

I feel like the best thing to take control of my illnesses is research, seeing my doctors regularly and keeping track of my symptoms.  It helps me feel like I’m at least doing something to help myself.




Does Creativity Equal Mania?

Am I manic crafter?  In the past I would have joked that yes I am.  I get immersed in my projects.  When I’m knitting I have a few projects going on.  I’d definitely overspend on yarn and projects. I’d stay up very late working on things and never leave the house without a project in my bag.

This period of depression has effected my joy or sewing/knitting/quilting/embroidering/etc. Now I don’t want to do any of the creative things I have loved to do in the past.  I don’t have the patience.

I talked to my pdoc about my lack of interest in all of my past hobbies.  I wander around the house with plenty of time to do lots of the things I used to love to do but I just don’t feel any urge.  Nothing seems to be enjoyable to me.  She told me that she thought my crafting was related to my mania.

I think she might be right! I had never thought of this. It really makes me sad since being manic is not good for me and we are trying to avoid it. Is my creativity gone forever now that I’m on a mood stabilizer? I hope not.

Maybe as this depression lifts things will change.  Maybe I’ll get my hobbies back.  If not I’ll settle for happy.





Sense Of Smell

My sense of smell has never been right.  For a long time it was barely there.  I can remember driving past a dead skunk one night and it didn’t bother me the least.  I could hardly smell it I told my husb.

For the past couple of years different scents have either triggered a migraine or made it much worse. Fresh cut grass, frying fish and perfumes to name a few. My sense of smell becomes really heightened.

When I do have a migraine I love lavender and peppermint essential oils. They really help. Rub some on your forehead, temples, nape of neck. They start working immediately while waiting for your medication to kick in. Give it a try!