I hate the holidays.

Any kind of holiday, I hate it, and I hate it with a passion.  Why?  Very simple, it highlights the fact that I don’t have family local to myself or close friends to spend the holidays with.

Holidays usually mean spending them alone, and that is just not a good feeling.

However, I do hope you have a wonderful 4th of July and that you enjoy the fireworks.  I will be crawling under my bed, and hoping not to cry.

Every Year…

It seems like with the passing of time, I continue to attempt getting this blog off the ground, but never actually put any content in it. I am hoping that this year, it will be different.

What has gone on in my recovery process?

Well, I am doing okay.
I still hear voices and I still struggle with my concentration and focus, some days way more than others.
I still have bouts of depression and crying spells.
I still have all the diagnoses and labels my care providers have given me over the years. But I am also learning to balance all of this.

If mental illness is just like any other medical illness, say, like Multiple Sclerosis (MS), you will have good days, bad days, exacerbations, possible hospital time, and flare ups. You will deal with all the crap a mental illness diagnosis brings with it, but you will also learn to deal with it. Learning to deal with it is part of what recovery is. The illness may not go away, but you can learn to manage it.

What the voices tell me is not true, unless I have hard, concrete evidence of what they are saying.
The depression lies to me and tells me I can’t do this or that, when in reality, with a plan, I am able to tackle it, at my own pace and time-frame.
PTSD freaks me out and scares me, but it is in the past. It is no longer happening.

Of course, a lot of this is much easier said than done, but focusing on recovery as opposed to the illness, you can get much accomplished.

With a disorganized mind like mine, there is much need for extra planning and scheduling, and even making a Plan B. Not much different than when you are not “mentally ill”. It just takes more effort.

In other news, I am in the process of being diagnosed by my rheumatologist. It seems like I might have some sort of auto-immune disease in addition to my fibromyalgia. Fun times!

I’m so tired but must keep going.

Today is repair day around here.  Little errors we caught after construction are being fixed today.  Which is good.  We need to have the repairs.  But it’s not good, because I am incredibly tired… I wish I could just find a little corner and sleep, but I am in charge of following through with the repairmen.  So it’s time to get the coffee going, and maybe some breakfast, and hope for the best.

I feel defeated today, but I won’t let it get me down.

Every morning, I set out to do a gazillion things.  The possibilities are endless, and even the sun was shining in this cold Hades of Chicago.  I got up, got dressed, and set out to go to my therapy.  And as I was starting my car, I noticed this sharp pain on my neck.  Great, I slept crooked.  No big deal.  And the gas needle is nearly on empty.  Okay.. I will stop by the gas station on the way to therapy.

But getting off the car to fill up the tank proved to be quite the task.  My plantar fasciitis attacked.  And the neck, oh the neck.  Nevertheless, I could see an ad for coffee at the store, so I limped my way to the coffee.  And I saw a deal… coffee and donut for $1.  Not bad… Not the best breakfast, but it will do… cheap, effortless, and while not so healthy, yummy.

With renewed energy, I trampled my way to therapy.

That went well.

Then, on the way back, I stopped to get a little something for Valentine’s Day for my husband.  And then I drove back home… only to find out that he himself hasn’t been feeling well.  I made something to eat for both of us… and then this thing called “running out of energy” happened.  So I sat down on the couch and watched an episode of Happy Endings (shame they canceled the show).

And then my husband magically felt better, and asked me to help him tape this huge package that we are sending some friend of his.  So I went and helped.  My neck and foot, still stiff.

Failed attempt.  UPS won’t take such an enormous package… we need to call freight.  Really?  All that extra effort getting the damned thing ready and for nothing.  Well, not a huge deal, I somehow got some renewed energy, but now my back was hurting, too.  Neck, foot, back.  So I ran and took a pain reliever.  Didn’t help much.

Then we went grocery shopping, because we are entertaining a couple of friends tomorrow (which means I gotta cook!)

And by this point, I got a migraine.  So migraine, stiff neck, stiff foot, painful back, low energy, tiredness, and a general sense of malaise.

And I still had to do dinner… but the hubby made my night… he told me not to worry about dinner.

I still feel like crap, but now it’s time to start ending the day so that I can start recharging for tomorrow.  It will be a long day.  I just hope this is not the presage of a flare up.  That, my friends, would really suck.

But I won’t let it get me down.

Painsomnia

As I had said in my post from September 1, 2013, I did not invent the term, but the fact that Painsomnia has made it to the urban dictionary gives us chronically ill people a little validation.

Here, check it out for yourself!

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=painsomnia

So there you have it.  I didn’t invent the term, but it exists in some level.  Maybe health care professionals will get in with the program, and understand that painsomnia is real.

I wonder how long it will take to go from neologism/slang to an actual word.

Another day…

It’s hard enough dealing with myself. Constant depression (although I do have joyous moments) and hearing voices and seeing things that aren’t there. Yes, I take my medications as prescribed. Yes, I participate in individual and group therapy regularly. But this is just not enough to “fix it”. In fact, I believe this to be sort of my new normal, and I’m trying to accept it as best I can… Migraines and all.

Finding the why doesn’t seem to be important anymore. I had a fucked up childhood, followed by broken dreams (and two rapes) in early adulthood, and a not-so-very successful adulthood so far. None of these are excuses. Just possible reasons for my brain/mind going haywire. But, does it matter?

I don’t know if it does. I don’t care much if it does. What matters is now. And what I can do to make now better. Easier said than done. Dwelling in the past brings about depression. Dwelling in the future brings about anxiety. Dwelling in the now helps a lot. Easier said than done.

Sometimes, the now is out of your hands. Sometimes, you just see someone you love struggle so much and it hurts you, because you love them so much. Sometimes, you wish you could swoop in and save the day. Because this would make you feel like you matter and it would make you feel good… Because now is what matters… But some demons are for other people to fight, even if it breaks your heart. What can you do? Be there for them the best you can, without harming yourself in the process. Yes, being in the now sometimes means being selfish, but a good part of self care is being selfish. Caring about yourself, because if you don’t, nobody else will. You have to take care of yourself first to be able to take care of others. Love yourself first to be able to love others.

Yes, I have a loving husband who very much cares about me (and I about him), but my demons are not his to fight. And his demons are not mine to fight. We can only guide each other the best we can, and love each other along the way. Not everything is roses in a loving relationship. As anything healthy, there are rough patches… And what do you do with the rough patches? Roll with the punches the best you can.

Sometimes you see them blinded and torturing themselves over something they have no control over. Sound familiar? We do that too. I know I do it. And I know he sees it in me and wants me to snap out of it, just as much as I see it and want him to snap out of it. Roll with the punches. It’s hard, and it hurts, but that’s what you gotta do.

This too, shall pass.

2013 was a roller coaster year. I’ve been down in the dumps more than I care to count, but I’ve also been blessed. I have a loving blended family, though we are still filing down the rough edges. My husband and I ended our year a bit early (we both hate crowds) with a lovely sushi dinner, in which we hoped and toasted for a better 2014. We are ending the year in a sour patch, but hitting the bottom means you can only go up from there, so 2014 is sure to be better. We have a good foundation and we have each other. And that’s a great start.

I hope your 2014 looks up. I also hope it’s a great year for you. Rough patches are inevitable, but they too shall pass.

Much love,
Recovery Voice.

So much to update.

It’s been a few days since my newly updated resolution to post more (hopefully quality) content. I spent a few days away in the psych ward. My hallucinations/psychotic symptoms had gotten out of hand, and I just couldn’t deal with them on my own any longer. It was time to re evaluate my medications and see what treatment options are available as my illness(es) progress and unfold.

I will say this much, I have so much to update, because I “blogged” on pencil and paper as allowed on the ward. And it’s a good thing that I did so then, because my 10 or 11 days in there are now quite a blur. I think I had some interesting stuff that I will post in the next few days (back-dated).

Things are so different with my new husband. I know I shouldn’t compare, but these things just come up. I would have to beg my ex to come visit me at all… I had to ask my hubby to take a day off from visiting (as he was obviously tired, not that I didn’t want to see him). My ex would expect me to pick up right where I left off. My hubby allowed for some readjustment time. My ex would barely recognize I was at all hospitalized. My hubby had flowers waiting for me at home.

Right now I am under the weather. Not sure if it is the medication change or what, but I have been feeling like with a low-grade flu-like symptoms that don’t quite pan out for the past couple of days, and a real bitch of a migraine that has lasted a few days. Seems to have abated now, but only time will tell, as I’m supposed to take the migraine meds only as needed, and it’s hard to judge if I still need them if they’re working well. It’s no news that regardless, I always have a headache that I have grown accustomed to living with.

I was able to host bunco night the other night, and only a few girls showed up. It was a bit of a relief, to be honest, because I don’t know if I would have been able to put up with a full set of bunco ladies, having been out of the hospital for just a couple of days.

Anyway, it is time to attempt some sleep. I’m tired, and I have no concise subject to talk about.