Kryptonite and Inevitable Triggers

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My Kryptonite

“Which of my feelings are real? Which of the me’s is me? The wild, impulsive, chaotic, energetic, and crazy one? Or the shy, withdrawn, desperate, suicidal, doomed, and tired one? Probably a bit of both, hopefully much that is neither.”
Kay Redfield Jamison, An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness

Consistently trying to mimic emotions of others everyday in itself is hard, trying to be happy when you are sad and and stop the acceleration of happiness is exhausting.  I cherish the moments when I can completely be myself, drown in the things I love with joy. I wish I could be consistent and a “trigger” is just a word for a simple release mechanism.

I have to pause before the hamster falls off the wheel and rewind a bit. Lately, I can’t figure out if I’m okay, about to be manic, or about to face the black dog (depression). It’s a typical meme you’ll find on the Internet. Basically, if you don’t like my mood now, wait a few minutes. I haven’t written as much on my blog in the last few weeks, mostly just unable to focus. I have emails I desperately need and want to reply too regarding how I handle having bipolar and mental illnesses or blog in general. Many praising how I am shifting such a horrible illnesses into a superpower. It’s hard to tell someone with bipolar, PTSD, depression or anxiety what works for me, because I am constantly trying to pinpoint the answer myself. Ithe is ever changing. I never post trigger warnings on my blog because no single person has the same triggers. Yes, we probably all share many of the same. But mine can be anything from hearing a baby cry in a bathroom echoing off the walls to someone asking me, “Do I know you?” to trigger a response.

So today, I was completely fine, enjoying a day with the family. We had chosen to go see a movie and walk around the mall prior. Today is Memorial day, for our family everyday is memorial day like many of our friends. We never forget those who gave all, so today was like no other except it reminds the rest of the world to pause for the day. It’s a trigger, I am reminded of my husband’s deployments, nearly losing him in the Pentagon on September 11th and those who did not come home on those days or those deployments. So for my family they are remembered everyday. So today a movie and the mall sounded perfect.

While shopping, I get a call from my credit card telling me of possible fraudulent charges. Instantly a trigger, “Did I do something and spend thousands online? Did I charge away to ASPCA  (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) late at night watching those emotional commercials involving animal cruelty? Or to an organization for wounded warriors that pulled at my heartstrings?” These things ran instantly through my head. I knew it was none of those things, but what if? What if it happened and I didn’t remember. The thoughts of other things ran through my head. As I listened, I learned that it was simply we hadn’t used our credit card and when my husband bought the kids a snack with the card just minutes before, it triggered the alert from the card company (Bravo to Chase Bank for diligently). This in turn triggered me.

It was obvious to everyone, the day was over. I was rigid, emotionless, angry, irritated, and every muscle remained tense. It was no one’s fault. I just hated myself, reminded of who I was like Kryptonite to Superman. I was wounded. I saw the disappointment on everyone’s face as we left the mall for the car. Everyone knew the day with Mom was over.

Once home it took hours to stop my muscles from being so tense. Release myself from the fear and tension that had occurred in my head. I sat on the couch and didn’t move. Shortly, I fell asleep from exhaustion. Once I woke, my body ached, I was tired, not sleepy but drained. Dinner was prepared for me, the kids and Dad went to a neighborhood cookout. The day was savaged for them, but I felt like I’d spent the day in the gym. In a fog, reflecting how real it all felt.

I wanted to share that regardless of how awesome and healthy I look or appear I’m not immune to triggers. I am not perfectly super bipolar all the time. What makes me great is also what makes me horrible. A trigger to me is what I imagine and compare to the weaknesses of superheroes.

As I sat down to write tonight I was reminded of, Kay Redfield Jamison, An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness. I flipped to the highlighted quote you see at the beginning of this post. It perfectly described me. It is me yesterday, today and tomorrow. The battle never ends, but like all superheroes I will survive to fight another day.

Memorial Day

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Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die. ~ Mary Elizabeth Frye

Visit a memorial and pay your respects for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice this holiday. Don’t cry, but be proud and thankful. It’s hard to hold back tears, but remembering where, what we are, what we have because they gave the ultimate sacrifice. Remember the honor and bravery of each soul. Take your kid and teach them, tell them a story. Remember a friend or family member. Cry if you must, it’s not about those serving now but those who gave all.

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Life beyond bipolar disorder, great article to read.

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One of my favorite parts of this article. I just had to share.

“It is important to keep in mind that you have more than a diagnosis. You have a destiny, and you can still realize all the dreams you ever had. Sure, it takes courage to move on with your life, but courage is like a muscle: the more you use it, the stronger it gets.

Bipolar disorder is only as limiting as you allow it to be, so do not let it hold you back. Bipolar disorder does not define your life: You do.” ~ Stephen Propst

Read the entire article link at bottom. It’s a great one to share and read.

http://www.bphope.com/ten-things-you-dont-want-to-know/

Hello May, Birthday month, musing on aging gracefully

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“She is free in her wildness, she is a wanderess, a drop of free water. She knows nothing of borders and cares nothing for rules or customs. ‘Time’ for her isn’t something to fight against. Her life flows clean, with passion, like fresh water.” – Roman Payne

I love growing older. As I age, each year I notice subtle changes in my body and appearance. I’ve grown to love myself even at my darkest. I complain about my weight, wrinkles, and body like any other woman. Unlike most women I feel more complete each year. My crows feet draw attention to my eyes and adds character. The weathered experienced look, as if I’ve lived too much; In reality, I lived too much, laughed too much, lost too much, and cried too much. I wish they were caused solely by laughter. People tell me I’m beautiful now and it very flattering. But, let me tell you about about my beauty.

I grew up being the ugly duckling. It’s hard growing up with boys, I had two brothers and my neighbor, all boys that I also considered my brothers. As you might imagine at critical times in the developmental years they weren’t as free with compliments. It’s possibly another reason I love Roman Payne’s, The Wanderess, “She is free in her wildness, she is a wanderess, a drop of free water. She knows nothing of borders and cares nothing for rules or customs.” That was me, but I was always alone. My brothers did the usual, you’re ugly, you’re fat, or my favorite was “Bertha butt” since I have always had a nice round butt and thighs. Looking back at pictures, I had a beautiful body. I’ve always had the pinup body, but as a kid in my head I  was ugly and fat. I don’t hold it against them now, but in my youth it hurt me deeply and it changed the way I dressed and covered body.
I would quickly get very dark skin from my mother’s American Indian heritage and straight black hair. It would reflect blue like a raven in the light. I found myself lightening, getting perms to curl, and doing various things to make it look like the other kids. I never told anyone, I just begged for a perm, curls, or some sort of chemical treatment to change it so I wouldn’t be teased. I wanted to look trendy, like other girls. Those things lightened my hair to a dark brown all because the straight black was just unnatural and I was teased. I was teased about my skin, my hair, my curves. I worked hard to change my appearance.  I wanted to be pretty, but made myself uglier in the process of fitting in with the girls.
So I always stayed active, involved, but withdrawn. So it  may be surprising to some to learn how incredibly ugly I felt thought my childhood years, even in my various uniforms which made me like the others. I never appreciated myself.

It wasn’t until I turned 20, I lived in Japan for several years. It was the different culture, that changed my view on aging. Aging is beautiful, I regret not being myself as a kid, it was learning I was beautiful not only on the outside, but the inside in a foreign country. It was at the end of my time in Japan bipolar slammed into me like a freight train. It possibly aged me ten more year in a single moment. But I did not fight it, I embraced it. I because free, happier, I was pretty and back in the United States. I had found myself, but I also found my superpower and did not know one thing about controlling my mind.
Aging for me, has been like being reborn each year. I feel unrecompensed with each passing year. Closer to something, closer to completely understanding myself and I welcome my birthday’s. With age, I’ve learned I’m attractive, intelligent, funny, intellectual, sexual, compassionate, complex, and introspective. Because of the experiences of my past, I honestly appreciate each and every compliment and even the negative compliments. It’s made me able to be modest and a more compassionate person. Modesty is rare in today’s society. It’s also recently made me brutally honest. That is what this birthday is going to celebrate. Being honest, telling my stories, and sharing my experiences.

It may appear, it’s been a beautiful ride, but my history and mileage learning to control the speed of my superpower, called Bipolar, with a bit of all the other crap included many training wreaks. Mental illness isn’t something you shouldn’t be ashamed of and I hope if you’re reading this, no matter your age don’t be ashamed for a second.

“’Time’ for her isn’t something to fight against. Her life flows clean, with passion, like fresh water.” – Roman Payne

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“Mental labels don’t define who I am, time and aging only gets me closer to those I love, will love, and have loved” ~ S.L. Cato

Sex and Facebook

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Sex….

That blog post is coming very soon so forgive me . Got your attention with the pictures but are you following and sharing my Facebook page https://m.facebook.com/Itsnotcrazytoday

It’s a great way for me to connect and message my blog followers and connect with others. Plus, it’s the only reason I went back to Fakebook. Stop over like and say hello. I love feedback and want to spread my blog and share the awareness of mental illness and how normal and amazing we can be, it’s not crazy. Write me and connect on Facebook, plus it’ll keep you up to date with new post on the page. Thanks you all and much love. The comments and blogs have brought tears to my eyes. I truly have amazing followers.
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How to enjoy being introverted…with some mad women steps….

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Let’s explore how I reset and enjoy the healthy time alone.

1. Learn to observer and watch people. It’s simple, watch children play and interact. Sit in the bar or group and listen. It’s much the same. Listen, don’t talk, unless spoken too.

2. Enjoy your time alone. It’s rare, turn off every device in the house for 20 minutes. Everything, phone, WiFi, televisions. Actually, go find the breaker box main switch and flip it off (turn the usuals off before doing this), you’ll instantly feel peace. It’s a strange sensation. Close your eyes and feel the lack of WiFi and electricity…..you will feel it if you shut it all off.

3. Learn to talk to yourself. You can always be kind to yourself. Learn to appreciate what your mind tells you in silence. Many times I’ve ignored what I knew or I should have done only to have my mind tell me, “I told you so”. So it’s worth listening and talking to yourself. No one will ever love you or listen to you like yourself.

4. Volunteer! You can do the smallest thing and change a life. But you do it on your own, you don’t do it to seek recognition. You just do something that helps others selfishly.

5. Decide you’re going to learn a skill or project. Complete it! I wanted to learn electrical repair. Several vocational classes and yours truly can fixed a toaster, wire a lamp, or do general household repairs. It was so rewarding, I continued with woodworking, plumbing, and auto repair. I’m a bit obsession so don’t use me as an example.

6. Make a list. I hate list, but make an agenda of things you want to accomplish before bed. Make sure the first this on your list is MAKE YOUR BED. Trust me, if you don’t make your bed you’ve screwed up the list. Make your bed, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment and then that first thing is checked off your list.

7. This is by far my hell on earth task, working out. Yes, workout! Walk 30 minutes, yoga, run, or what ever your vice….even sex. I prefer the latter. Sex count.

8. Do something completely alone. I’ll go to the movies, bookstore, and then have a drink and dinner while writing in my journal, ALONE! It is possibly, my best advice if you’re a mom or dad with a schedule. Plan a run away monthly!

9. Approach and engage strangers and be genuinely interested. I’ve learned so much about people just by removing the stigma of societies norm. I’ve made some of the best and life long friends whom I don’t think I could live without if not for letting go of my preconceived impressions based on societies normal. I’m in a military community, so normal is pretty straight laced.

10. Set goals, writing it down and put it in an envelope. In one year, I will have….? Next one, In 5 and 10 years. It can be big, it can be as simple as I’ll stop biting my nails. But, when you open that envelope you’re rewarding yourself. Do monthly envelopes! It’s goals with the satisfaction, you put it in writing and you accomplished something for yourself, not someone else. You discover and achieved it for yourself.

That is my alone time. That is how I’m alone and not defined by anyone else.

Falling in love with the Moon

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“Love is a serious mental disease.”

— Plato

Some times, I do like to write a bit about those little things off the wall. Tonight, it’s really obsession, falling in love and also of the idea of the unreachable goal. I have fallen in love with the moon. I’ve fallen in love with things that burn me.

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I speak of unreachable goals, because some may argue all goals are achievable. It certainly not true, but worth ever second to try to reach the moon. Love for some may seem unreachable, but it’s achievable. Some things are worth the chase, worth the wait, and certainly worth the risk.

I read blog and books now everyday, now obsessively. I set aside a few hours and really get to be inside others peoples minds for that time. A few, I’ve really fallen in love with as they write and post on blogs, others in books, I’ve started. I love writers and poets. I have fallen in love with dead authors and have this fantasy of them writing about me, because as to quote Mik Everett, “If a writer falls in love with you, you can never die.” Maybe I never died and live as a character in my classics. Maybe a muse, an inspiration for a character in a classic. I love the writers and the poets. I’ve formed an obsession with the simple and the complex.

“You don’t love because: you love despite; not for the virtues, but despite the faults.” William Faulkner

And no matter what, I shall end with a classic story and movie quote.

“Death cannot stop true love. All it can do is delay it for a while.”
— The Princess Bride

I am certain, I’ve touch the moon. It was once unreachable.

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Ode to a brilliant woman, Marilyn Monroe and an FU to Megan Fox

  “Dogs never bite me. Just humans.” ― Marilyn 

Marilyn lived a very troubled life and struggled with mental illness. When she was young her mother was even institutionalized as a paranoid schizophrenic. Marilyn constantly feared the eventual diagnoses of her own mental health. Marilyn was extremely intelligent and was said to have an IQ of 168. She had many marriages her first at age 16 to an young sweetheart later to Joe DiMaggio and Arthur Miller. After reading a great biography and there’s many of them written, but one particularly, “Marilyn: The Passion and the Paradox” by Lois Banner is a great one. In death Marilyn has been idolized; posters, shirts, art, truly a icon. She also very popular figure in tattoos. One particular story is of Megan Fox and her former Marilyn tattoo. She idolized her success, her image, her pose, and the face that Marilyn shown the world. What I found interesting was once Megan did research and learned about Marilyn as a person, her background, her history her tragedies. Megan made the choice to remove the tattoo of Marilyn to avoid possible”negative energy”. Megan is quoted in US weekly referring to the tattoo, “she (Marilyn) was a disturbed negative person, she was disturbed, bipolar. I do not want to attract this kind of negative energy in my life ” Well, I’m sorry Megan that’s a shitty answer and even a slap in the face to those who suffer from mental disorders. I could write much more on her, but she does not deserve my time nor money for any movies she may appear.

This quote is you Megan:

“I’ve never fooled anyone. I’ve let people fool themselves. They didn’t bother to find out who and what I was. Instead they would invent a character for me. I wouldn’t argue with them. They were obviously loving somebody I wasn’t.” ― Marilyn Monroe

So on to some of my favorite Monroe musings and quotes.


  
“This life is what you make it. No matter what, you’re going to mess up sometimes, it’s a universal truth. But the good part is you get to decide how you’re going to mess it up. Girls will be your friends – they’ll act like it anyway. But just remember, some come, some go. The ones that stay with you through everything – they’re your true best friends. Don’t let go of them. Also remember, sisters make the best friends in the world. As for lovers, well, they’ll come and go too. And baby, I hate to say it, most of them – actually pretty much all of them are going to break your heart, but you can’t give up because if you give up, you’ll never find your soulmate. You’ll never find that half who makes you whole and that goes for everything. Just because you fail once, doesn’t mean you’re gonna fail at everything. Keep trying, hold on, and always, always, always believe in yourself, because if you don’t, then who will, sweetie? So keep your head high, keep your chin up, and most importantly, keep smiling, because life’s a beautiful thing and there’s so much to smile about.” 

 

“She was a girl who knew how to be happy even when she was sad” ― Marilyn Monroe
RIP Marilyn
***edited to add some fun stuff I alway enjoyed and to say F*ck you Megan Fox.

1. Marilyn’s hero was Abraham Lincoln. She read everything she could find about him.

2. She loved Clark Gable so much she cried for days when he passed. She saw him as a father figure and would imagine him as her father.

3. She was rumored to have had a intimate relationship with Einstein who she openly talked about her attraction to him.

I could go on and on, but she was an extremely intelligent lady who hated being the labeled the Hollywood dumb blonde.

Oh the horror!

  

Screams radiated from one bedroom, while a maniacal laugher rang out from another room.

It was the beginning of the perfect conclusion to awesome spring break day. Both my kids were playing quietly upstairs in their rooms. They had played all day, either with me or friends. I listen as my daughter asked my son, “Come on bud, let’s go play Minecraft.” Peter, “Really?” And off they went to play together. I say to myself, “You have parented well, now go reward yourself. You are winning!” It is spring break so Cork popped the cork on a meaty red wine! “Breathe beautiful wine, breathe”



They silence was beautiful. I was rather proud of my kids. They rarely need to be disciplined and are both amazingly intelligent. They were playing together in this virtual Minecraft world. Apparently, my daughter invited Peter to play in her world. They separated, he in his room and she in hers on separate devices. Suddenly screams of terror, cries from my daughter’s room. Sobbing hiccups crying, a barely audible, “He Godzilla’ed my world, he put lava everywhere!” Obviously, I’m not too informed on the Minecraft lingo or the complexity. I had read it was good for three dimensional thinking and brain development so I became a fan. In the other room, we hear laughter, maniacal laughter. Peter is obviously pleased with himself, he had finally won something against his older wiser sister. Peter saw himself as Peter the Minecraft dominator, Peter the destructor. 

My daughter’s sadness quickly grew into anger and then acceptance. Rowan would surely rise like a Phoenix from the Minecraft world ashes. My son, well… we all learned why he’s blocked so much on Minecraft. He was apparently known to Godzilla worlds with lava, he was indeed Peter the destructor. My husband and I often talk, she is a genius with the morality of a saint. Peter has a bit more creative genius with flexible morality. He’ll either go to prison or find the cure for cancer. Both are incredibly smart. I think about the possibility of one or both inheriting my genetics. Tonight I saw myself in them both, I laughed silently with Peter and cried internally for my daughter. Her forgiveness was humbling and his apology priceless, “It’s just a game, I’d never hurt you in real life row.” 
My hope is my children see my struggles and learn from my mistakes. They recognize the symptoms, they watch out for each other as adults. They learn from my openness of my own mental illnesses. They adapt and overcome, they are kind, they grow up knowing how to handle their superpower. Something I only learned as an adult.
I parented tonight and the wine was wonderful.

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