Wednesday, April 13, 2016

The downside to being up....

Hey all...this is an older post that's been sitting in my draft folder since January 2015...thought I'd go ahead and share as it is something I feel strongly about.

I came across an informative and interesting look at Bi-Polar Disorder today... something that I, too, suffer from.  Luckily I am on the low-end scale of the disorder, but I recognize a lot of my own behavior patterns in these people.


Why do I share this?  Because I feel that it is better for people to know what to look for, and to understand what it is that we deal with on a very daily basis.

I remember having a friend, years ago, who used to joke about needing her "Shawna Fix"; like I was some drug of choice, and I being so angry and resentful every time she would say it.  All it said to me was that she preferred me in my more manic, entertaining mode... like I was a performing monkey for her entertainment, and I was left with a feeling that a balance was not desired, because someone a little more even-keeled would not be nearly as fun to be around.

I am no longer in such a toxic relationship, thankfully, but I notice I am far more elaborate and peppy when I am around other people... its when I am alone and safe in the comfort of my home that I am able to collapse back into periods of blank flatness, and there are times that I crave this blankness that it scares me.

This is further exacerbated by the fact that I often forget to take my meds.  On my meds it is easier to feel that I am really fine, that there is nothing wrong with me and I find myself forgetting them... until I find myself turning into what I call my "super bitch" mode... where anything is capable of setting me off and leave me fuming; a bomb that is not always easily defused once triggered.

Balance is hard to find, as I never seem to find the energy to try and plan a less-stressful schedule than what I currently have.  I find being asked to do additional tasks frustrating, and I fly off the handle angrily at being asked to tackle the simplest of tasks on top of what I am already doing.  I often burst into tears when I am alone, simply because I am so tired.

Don't get me wrong... I love the creativity, the energy, the being excited and on-fire about a new project, but it is so exhausting.  I find myself just collapsing... hardly having energy to make it to the bathroom, and often don't bother feeding myself or accomplishing tasks around the house. The idea of cooking a meal just exhausts me and seems beyond my capability at times like these.

Weekends are worse, especially when nothing is planned, as I spend my time mindlessly staring at the computer... I can't even be bothered to reach for a book or some other distraction that I normally love.  I spend it doing essentially nothing... a sort of buffer to unwind from a week of running non-stop.  A pressure release valve that leaves me feeling worthless and like I have nothing to offer, as Monday comes all too soon and I am left looking back at a weekend wasted with nothing to show for it.

Maybe it is time to look at having my meds adjusted: at this time I am only on an anti-depressant, but maybe it is time to look at the bigger guns.It is definitely time to re-think my work schedule... 10 to 13 hour days have to stop as I am driving myself into the ground and I hate myself more the longer it goes on.  I am not saying that I hate what I do for a living... honestly, its a nice job that I enjoy, but it is easily overwhelming, as I allow it to consume far too many hours.

These last couple of weekends have found me sleeping through them entirely... which terrifies my husband.  Up to that point I was bringing work home with me; not taking a day off at all.  There is a huge pile of work beside me now that demands I focus on it, but, as much as it needs to be done, a part of me is incredibly resentful that it sits here judging me.  I know that if I don't do it today, it will be just that much more work dumped on me tomorrow, and I know my week is already going to be crazy enough without this added to it.

The load I stack on myself is also hurting others... I become so overwhelmed that I lash out if I am disturbed (for example Richard just walked into my office to see if I needed anything and all I could do was angrily glare at him for interrupting me).  He apologized, recognizing "that look" and now I feel like an utter shit... all he wanted to do was to see if I was doing okay and I became super bitch (at least in my mind... wisely I kept my mouth shut) but I still hurt him needlessly.

So now I need to apologize, and all I want to do is cry because I hate being this way.

I hired a second assistant to help with the workflow, who will start as soon as I have a computer ready (which cannot happen soon enough in my opinion).  We had increased our field support employees (our staff in the field has doubled since last December) but I hadn't brought in help for the increase in billing paperwork that it generated.  I hope having another assistant helps, but I know that I need to speak to my doctor about other changes as well.

I need to find a way to stop the mood swings that seem to have taken over so much of my life.  I need to learn to find a way to say "no" (politely , of course) to additional tasks that so easily overwhelm me, which will not be easy, because I am naturally the kind of person who wants to say "yes" and not hurt anyone's feelings.

Frankly, I am not sure why I am throwing this out into the void, but I hope that it will help me to get a better picture if I do, since I am very good at ignoring things that I do not want to deal with.  Will I post this?  I doubt it, as I do not like worrying others with my own trivial problems.  Most likely it will sit here in my drafts box, and I will later go back to it and laugh at what a Drama Queen I was being and how overly melodramatic I can be.  Of course, I will safely be back on my meds by that time, and not likely to feel connected to these feelings.  Like I said, I am good at ignoring things, and forgetting the unpleasant bits of my personality is second nature to me.

But if I do post this, I wanted to add a link to the documentary I watched, as it was so very well done.  I want to throw out my thanks to Mr Fry for sharing a very personal side of himself and to the many people who graciously granted interviews to discuss their own challenges with this lousy disease.

And for the record Mr Fry... I would push that button in a heartbeat.

Letting go

It's been ages since I've even thought of blogging...for which I humbly apologize. There are all sorts of excuses I could make, but I really guess it all boils down to life and priorities getting all twisted and tangled into an unfathomable mess, which really happens to all of us from time-to-time, doesn't it? For once life has left me with time on my hands, and a desire to start writing...what better way to slip into things than by dusting off my blogs and diving in?

Today finds me relatively well, in spite of my health issues...which I shall cover in later posts. This afternoon Richard promises to help me get my office into some sort of order (i.e.: clear a path through my accumulated papers, supplies and books so I can get to both desks). I've taken on the mindset that we have far too much stuff that cluttering the place a small apartment this means my office looks like an episode of Hoarders, though, thankfully, without the dead cats or feline-related urine stains (no urine of any kind for that matter).

Why the need to downsize? Well, being home 24/7 and having this junk stare me in the face is the past I could escape by going to work and coming home in time to eat and head straight to bed, but I no longer have that option. Wanting to grab the cats and just walk away from it all is not a healthy condition to find myself in and is not normal!

I have noticed a familial trend to be pack rats and I no longer want a part of it. Case in point: I got Richard to rearrange the bedroom furniture; since the addition of my recliner (yes, I sleep in a recliner now) the room was completely crowded. It was hard to negotiate while clean, let alone with junk on the floor. Every time I allowed myself to think of it I got anxious, then angry, and then downright mean because I felt like I was suffocating in a pile of unneeded crap.

Heck, just thinking about it is making me upset!

The bedroom is still not done, but it feels much more open and I noticed the more that was done the less pissy I was feeling. It's very slow-going because we have accumulated a lot of stuff and, I admit it's hard to let some of it go. That, and my current health doesn't allow me to do much without bringing on a lot of pain, but it NEEDS to be done.

I don't think stress will go away once we have decluttered our lives, but it WILL reduce something that's become a stress-trigger for me, which is good, and having less junk around for me to trip over or fall against is good now that I'm more prone to fractures.

I know, I know....sooooooo not an interesting post. I'll try and do better with the next one....once I find my desk!