Another Untitled Poem

You’re in my heart, you’re in my dreams
Not a moment is without you in my mind, it seems
You make me laugh, you make me warm
You make me smile through my emotional storms
I’ve opened my heart, I’ve opened my soul
Given you all I have, I hope you know
You’ve turned my days from black to gold
All of my secrets have begun to unfold
But this part of my heart and voice in my head
Keeps telling me there is a cloud of dread
That this wonderful man does not feel the same
As as our time together goes on, so does the game
When will I find the one who will fall for me?
And give me the world and their heart to keep safely?

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Where Did I Lose Your Love? My Last Letter To You

Or maybe the better question is When?

Dear Ex…wait,  you aren’t very dear, so how about

To The Ex,

I’ve been there for you in the good times and the bad.  I tried to be the best ME that I could be.  When I discovered people trying to hurt you, I told you, yet you always found a way to make me the bad one. I still sucked it up.  I let it happen time and time again. I  never once said “I told you so,” and never once demanded an apology (I knew I wouldn’t get one anyway), but was just hoping that the next time I tried to warn you, you would take my advice to mean something.

But, time went on, and eventually, it all caught up to me and I got sick and ended up in the psych hospital.  I did everything I could with all of the tools, coping techniques, and other things I was given over the years in effort to learn to deal with my illness and manage it.  You however, despite all my doctors and hospital visits opinions,  insisted I was doing all of this because that behavior was deemed by you to be dramatic and because I’m drama queen.

To my own detriment, I allowed you to tell me that I was a drama queen and continued to think and believe that.

I just worked through it with some people from group and in my own way.  I realized that while everyone else had supportive relationships, and significant others that gave them emotional support, I wanted that too, but that is not what you gave me.  I just wanted you to hold me and tell me it would be ok.  Instead, anytime my emotions or moods became so overwhelming that I couldn’t hold it in anymore, and would inevitably resort to crying, you would get mad at me for crying and would get up and leave and not come back until the middle of the night or next morning. That made me even more upset because I would worry about you also.

You always left.

The good, but yet bad at the time, part about it all was that it forced me to get better on my own and find my own ways.  But just when things started to get better for me, you go and get yourself arrested for some hefty charges. Even after things got sorted out, because I love you , I ended up in trouble because I wanted to save you. I saw them pinning all of the beach home’s former roommate’s illegal possessions on you, I went into an immediate protect mode and despite my feelings that Mr. Shady roommate  wasn’t going to be a good roommate, you continued to assure  me for many weeks before and after he moved in and said to “trust him, just trust him.”

So I did.

After several weeks before and after he moved in, I decided to put my guard down and trust him.  So, yes, it was my fault.  I was stupid.  I was an idiot.  I should never have said a word to him that day when he called me after they had taken you away in handcuffs.  But I did, trying to protect you.  Ultimately, I got in trouble and OH MAN AM I ever paying the price.  Never had I ever blamed you for it until I filed for divorce 4 years later.  Even though everybody I know thinks I should be blaming you for all of this, that I should be so angry at you, that I should be the one pissed off at you, bitching at you, and YOU should be the one bending over backwards for me, treating me like a queen because I was there for you through the whole thing, but, they didn’t happen.

I stuck by your side, I did the very best I could to make things a little less miserable while you were in there, while still trying to keep myself from falling apart out here.  I had my own problems, with my doctor not being able to get my medications in check enough to keep me in a good stable place, my probation for my job, the false positive drug test fiasco the day of my sentencing, various run ins with the condo’s home owner’s association, etc;   I had my fair share of trying to coordinate with your parents, your sister, to keep not just YOUR life going, but mine also.  When you got out, you still had your house, you had your business, you still had a lot of things, things that most people who have been in jail didn’t have then, nor when they got out, so I did my best to make sure that you had everything, even if it meant draining every last ounce of my energy.  I did that for love. That’s what I knew love to be and that is what I did.

Things were fine for awhile, and I was trying to find something I could do that would make me happy while I was looking for support because my bipolar was getting the best of me. I mean, you continually told me flat out, starting when I was first diagnosed and hospitalized in 2006, you didn’t want to learn about bipolar and didn’t care about it. (Which, to be quite honest, is so incredibly selfish and hurtful.)

How could you NOT care about an illness that someone you love has?  Especially a mood disorder?

My job was no longer making me happy.  I wasn’t seeing my friends much because they all lived in the suburbs, and I obviously couldn’t talk to you about it or get any support from you.  Frankly, I have to practically pull teeth to get even a hug from you, a kiss, FORGET IT!

When I found the website Ask A Bipolar, they were a great support.  They were looking for new writers and I decided to apply.  (My friends tell me that they come to me for advice first and I am awesome at cheering people up).  They let me guest post and then shortly after, I became an author which after some time, the founder and I formed a partnership.  I was so absolutely, incredibly proud that I was able to not just help the people who submit questions, but also help myself in the process, and also so proud that finally, someone thought that I would be an asset. Of course the website is non profit, so I didn’t get paid for the work I did, but to me, the work was not work, but was more than that.  It made me feel good to help, it helped me learn more social media skills, and it formed friendships for me.  They may have been online and I ma not have been able to see them in person but I still considered them friends and had people I could finally relate to. Let’s face it, you hated when I was doing work on the computer and your excuse for that was because I wasn’t making any money doing it.  Well, no, I wasn’t, but I was learning more about my illness and taking better care of myself and that should result in a better relationship for us, especially since you didn’t want to even learn a thing about bipolar.  This should have been the greatest thing for you then because you didn’t have to deal with it.  WRONG.

The one person I wanted to be excited and proud of me was you.

That was another mistake.  All you have done is shoot me down, get mad at me, yell at me, and complain about it.  99% of the time I text, call or email, you are unresponsive even though I know your phone is by your side because it never leaves your side when you are at home. You are hardly home at night during the week and on weekends, so I barely see you.  But then when I do see you, you are ragging on me for something I didn’t correctly that you had emailed or text me about and never responded back when I had questions,  or demanding I wait on you hand and foot.  You complain about MY salary, yet I’m the one bringing in the steady salary and paying for your internet and cable (which you would die without), car insurance, and buying your groceries, but let’s not forget how much you bitch about the grocery shopping.  Now, I’ve tried to explain this to you over and over and you choose to ignore, but do you know what it is like for A FORMER ANOREXIC AND BULIMIC TO GO TO THE GROCERY STORE?! Especially when no one gives her a list.  Its TERRIFYING to begin with and then you harp on how long I was gone.  I”M SORRY THAT I HAVE TO READ EVERY STUPID LABEL!  I’ve told you over and over. *sigh* I don’t want to do it anymore! You don’t help any because when I ask you what you want to eat you say whatever, I’m easy, but then whatever I bring home, definitely not what you wanted. *throws hands in the air* I give up.

I have sat by your side through all of your hardships.

I have tried to cheer you up, have offered suggestions and solutions, given you hugs when things aren’t going well and you look sad.  I try to do everything I can to make you smile again.  But, when it comes to me, well, lately, the only way I factor in is how I have FAILED you that day.  Don’t you think I could use a hug once in a while?  An actual hug, not one that I have to chase you down while you stand stiffly and I hug a giant pencil.  OR a kiss.  An actual kiss that YOU initiated.  Not one that I gave you while you were half asleep as I leave for work in the morning.  What happened to talking to me about things? You don’t tell me anything so you I have to read it on your calendar or you will tell me if its something bad that I did or didn’t do.  I absolutely perfected the art of puting a fake smile on my face and parading around like everything was perfect and I was the perfect child.  Yet, in my room, I was bawling my eyes out for hours because a friend had tried to rape me in the back of his car.  Or cutting and cutting because it felt better than all the girls making fun of me for the rumors people spread.  Or being in Europe and listening to your best friend tell the kid you like (and he likes you, and you had headphones on, but had not turned on the tape) telling him that you are just a dumb idiot blonde and only losers go for me.  Yet, I walked around with this fake ass smile on my face pretending everything was perfect.  I’m not going to do that now.

I’m not going to be this perfect little robot.  Because I have feelings. I’m not a robot.  I have feelings, and I’m a person and I do CRY, (I laugh too) but I cry and I need to be held. I need to be understood too.  I have given you 8 years of total devotion and everything I had, even when I had my own issues and you couldn’t deal with them.  I let you sit there and call me a drama queen, watched you go out and party and not come home while I hurt sooooo badly.  Yet, still didn’t hold that against you when you were in jail and was still there for you and did all I could.  I gave you everything.

Your Response?

I know your response, because it’s always the same, to this is going to be that you give me a nice place to live, a boat to be on, some nice vacations, etc….. it’s all money or things.  I didn’t need those things or ask for them.  Those are YOUR things.  All I wanted was a piece of you!!!!  Your heart!  Not your possessions or money!  If it was about money, I would have left long ago!

Despite all the bad, all the times you hurt me, or embarrassed me, made me feel stupid, unloveable, crazy,  ashamed, inadequate, I know that I did all I could to be there and prevent you from being hurt or embarrassed. I would tell you when people were going behind your back and you chose to ignore it, but I told you, I didn’t keep those from you.  When I thought people were using you for possessions or money, I told you also. When the people you entrusted me to while you were away didn’t come through and left me completely hanging, I told you the truth and you chose to ignore it. You bought your friend’s girlfriend a car and you thought that I was after your money.

I became part of your family.  Not just when I married you, but LONG before that. I was there when your niece was born, when she was baptized, when your other niece and nephew graduated high school, for all those Christmases, Thanksgivings, Easters, I was there for the first 7 years of our nieces life. I used  to talk to your mom almost daily, as well as your sister.  I was part of your family for a long time, and they never treated me differently because I have bipolar.  In fact, the first time I was in the hospital, they were taking care of me while you went on vacation to Burning Man with your new college friend.   They never accused me of cheating on you or being after your money.  So, maybe its time to take some pieces of advice from them or learn from their example.

Lastly,

I may have tolerated it for 8 years, but now, I no longer have to. I can be the person I am without having to hide, pretend, or fake my mood or fake anything else because I’m afraid of upsetting someone. I know that I can be loved regardless of having bipolar and of what happened in the past.  Take everything from these 8 years and use them as a million lessons learned, because there were a million lessons. I may not have put them all in here, but I learned them.  I know that I am a good person with a good heart.  I know that I am good at helping people and that I have a lot of other positive qualities because if I didn’t, then this site wouldn’t be as popular as it is and wouldn’t be helping as many people as it has. So, Mr. Ex, This is good bye, good riddance, peace out, scram, and take all your bullshit with you.

Love,

The Bipolar Hot Mess
The one you didn’t support but is doing just fine

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Better from here

 

I opened the door of the empty home
The silence echos, another night alone
Walk up the stairs, turn on the light
Far too often, yet doesn’t feel right
Turn on the TV, its the same routine
The haze in my mind makes it all feel like a dream
My phone begins to ring, your name staring at me
Instantly I’m smiling and leaving behind the insanity

My world gets brighter when I know you are there
When you came into my life,  you rescued me with your fresh air
Giving me hope and then clearing up the haze
Making me smile and giving me life in my darkest days

We laughed and had fun on the days we weren’t apart
One day I woke up and you had stolen my heart
Now all I can ever think about is you,
How to make you happy, what can I do
When I see your smile, you calm all my fears
When I feel your arms around me, the whole world disappears
I sometimes sit and wonder if this is reality?
Where did you come from?  Why did you chose me?

My world gets brighter when I know you are there
You believed and had faith in me, and showed genuine care
Giving me hope and then clearing up the haze
Making me smile and giving me life in my darkest days

When I begin to feel so alone
All I do is pick up my phone
I look at the screen and see your name
My stomach gets butterflies, there is no more pain
But then you leave, and yes I know that you have to
Just know while you are gone, I definitely miss you
I miss your laugh and I miss your smell
I miss how you hold me, how you barely know me, yet know me so well

My world gets brighter when I know you are there
You give me strength, and assure I have nothing to fear
Giving me hope and keeping away the haze
Making me smile and giving me back my life in my darkest days

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Another year older, but wiser?

Here I am.  Another year older.  I woke up this morning and was actually relieved that I was not hungover (as I usually am after a night of birthday celebrations) but instead just looked like I was run over.  If smeared eyeliner and the rats nest of curls with mass quantities of hairspray were the only evidence of a night out, then for sure it was a success.  I’ve also been awake for almost 12 hours and there has been not one phone call or text reminding me of any shaming behaviors or embarrassing conversations that had occurred.  My celly is devoid of any evidence of any of the aforementioned as well; no embarrassing photos or blacked out texts that I had sent and had no recollection of until the morning after.

The BIPOLAR HOT MESS REALLY IS GROWING UP!  Not only am I a year older, but I REALLY TRULY AM WISER!

I know that drinking is definitely not a good combo with having bipolar and the meds I take for it, but on occasion I can have small amounts and still behave.  Last night, I was able to actually indulge in a few beverages,  know my limit, be aware of my limit, NOT push the limit, and remain in my happy place,  (which even allowed others to be in their happy place too because I was under control!).

Does this mean I am now free to drink anytime alcohol is served because I have learned to control myself and had one positive result in a difficult test?

NO!  Part of learning is knowing that there are certain times and situations that I should not even attempt to add alcohol to the mix because it is just going to cause an explosion at the very least, an earthquake or hurricane most likely.  One major thing I learned from last night is that I am now starting to become much more in tune with myself and the mood of those around me, and to make better choices so I can properly handle certain situations that usually would have resulted in an excruciatingly painful night ending in a lot of shame and regret.  SO YAY to the Bipolar Hot Mess for starting her birthday off right!

How else have I made positive changes?

I have decided to take the advice of all my therapists, friends and family, and began doing more positive things for myself instead of spending all my waking minutes either working, or trying to solve the problems of, and save, every single person in the world.  So I already have gotten a jump start.

Since midnight of October 1, 2011, these are the things that I have done for me:

  • went to murder mystery dinner theater with my friends (I have always wanted to do that);
  • was able to manage and regulate myself when drinking so that the next morning would not be absolutely miserable and filled with the “what happened?” and embarrassment from the previous nights events;
  • finally organized an enormous, toppling over, stack of mail and attended to all those bills and statements, including putting many on auto bill pay so there is no more paper mail and guaranteed no late payments or late fees;
  • FINALLY figured out how to sync my calendar and contacts from Google to my iPhone!  I’ve only had the phone for about 2 months now. Now I can be SURE of appointments more than 10 minutes in advance when getting the email reminder. (yes my typing skills still suck on it, and the ability to use any feature outside of  Facebook, Words with Friends or Sudoku, or the music, is still almost non-existent, but hey, baby steps right?  It’s incredibly terrible and rough going from the world of the Blackberry and BBM, to the world of Apple and its million and two different apps.  It’s like a new GALAXY!);
  • Many may not know this, but for someone with a history of eating disorders, the grocery store is probably the most feared and hated place to go. Then, when you are able to muster up enough courage, it is never a short trip.  I dread going and will wait until we literally have NOTHING left in the house before I am forced to go. So, once through the door, it always takes a minimum of 2 hours.  Then, there is one of my favorite stores, the craft store, which is usually at minimum, at least an hour.  TODAY, I hit both stores in 1 hr and 15 minutes.  I didn’t waste my entire evening, like usual, yet I still got everything I needed from the store and investigated what I needed to investigate at the craft store. How did I do it? Instead of himing and hawing over everything I actually executed decisions quickly AND, did not look at ONE food label!  AMAZING!  And even better, with the time I saved, I was able to write this post! You may not think this was for me, but saving all that time was DEFINITELY for me!
  • I made it a special point to sit and watch at least one tv show without my phone or computer anywhere around.  I am constantly multi tasking because I always feel that I need to be as productive as I possibly can be so I do multiple tasks at once. This time, I not only got a dose of my mystery fix by watching some Alfred Hitchcock, but I also watched it with my full attention.  I haven’t done that in FOREVER! It was actually better for me because I was able to do my work faster without the tv in the background and I still got to see an entire show.  Another plus for making changes and trying to be more productive.  It worked!
  • I am a huge procrastinator so in my attempt to take control back and let ME run my life and not my illness, I actually got my prescriptions filled AHEAD of time so I am not scrambling around at the last minute!!  A stress saver for sure!
Starting my first few days of being 31 on such a positive note gave me hope that this is going to be a good year! So, cheers to me and turning old!
Here is a mix I made of some of my favorite jams that I jam to and sing at the top of my lungs to!  My birthday jams.
Its my birthday and I’ll jam if I want to!

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Where’s the lowest low on the bipolar coaster?

Wouldn’t all of us with bipolar like to know the answer to THAT!! The problem is, the joke’s on US! There IS NO ANSWER to that question!

What do I mean there’s no answer?

Well, we first have to start off with a few facts.

  • Bipolar has varying severities  (i.e. BP I, BP II, etc.)
  • The HIGHS experienced in bipolar are either:
    • full blown mania in Bipolar I (the most extreme because it can cause things like hallucinations)

OR

    • hypomania which is experienced in bipolar II (less extreme and I like to call the “energizer bunny” symptoms: talking real fast, lots of energy, running around like a chicken with its head cut off.)
  • The LOWS experienced in bipolar are classified as periods of depression that last longer than an average person’s typical bout of depression. HOWEVER, it is also different in that:
    • it lasts much longer than the average person (and by longer I mean many consecutive weeks)
    • it rears its ugly little monster head many times a year; and
    • it’s felt much more deeply and intensely internally to the point it impairs the ability of daily functioning.

There are so many more facts that distinguish the two but I think those tidbits are enough to prove my case and point; which is:

IT’S ALL RELATIVE!

If you have bipolar I, your highs can get so high that you can feel so euphoric that you think you can fly and then your low can feel so low that you become suicidal.

If you have bipolar II, your high may mean running around like an energizer bunny, rattling off stories,or ideas, or thoughts and having the energy to start all these fabulous and grandiose ideas and them suddenly a few days later, you are so depressed you can’t even get out of bed, or are also suicidal because you are so disappointed you didn’t complete any of the tasks you started and you know you never will.

So in all honesty, what IS the lowest of the low?

Well, it can not be clearly defined by a set of actions or emotions or characteristics except to say that the lowest will be the point in which you will feel your worst because you are not at the point of your own extreme best.  You see, having bipolar, we get to see a side of ourselves that many people don’t get to see in themselves. They DON’T get to see the extreme high or the capabilities that you have and what can be achieved during this time (well, unless they dabble with NON prescription drugs) But, with every good,there is a bad and so the price we pay for having the ability to reach that high, we also reach that same level on the spectrum as a low.

There is no way for anyone to be able to definitively measure to anyone else how low their low on the “bipolar coaster” is because it all depends on how high the person’s high is and that can only be experienced by the one and only person, YOU!

I hope this was helpful for you guys!

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Dear Baby….

Dear Baby, I’m writing this to you

To tell you all the things I feel

And  at times forget to do

My sweetheart, you take my breath away

Your kindness, and your honesty

I fall in love some more each day.

My teacher, you are guiding me to grow

When all I had were big dark clouds

You showed me my rainbow

My lover, you taught me to believe

That not all are broken and need repair

To love again you must grieve.

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That same haunting question…

It has become a theme as I read through old journals and poems and pages of notes I’ve scribbled through the years. That same thing I believe many of us with any kind of illness constantly asks ourselves.

What did I do wrong that caused me to get this?

I have one journal entry where I write:

I have always tried to be nothing but nice and do the right thing, and 20 years later I am living a life of illness, sadness, confusion, frustration, and loneliness. I feel badly because I am ruining everyone’s life.  All those that care about me are suffering because of me. I don’t want to be a nuisance or burden or cause any pain to those around me…

-October 2006-

I know that I had asked myself that question a million times and could never come up with an answer. I filled myself up with so much guilt all the time because I truly felt I was ruining everyone’s lives.  But what could be done to fix it? This was an illness that doesn’t just vanish. You couldn’t just take an antibiotic and by the time you reached the end of the bottle the illness was gone.

How can things ever be the same again?

They can’t and they won’t.

However, the first step toward achieving some sort of stability or balance, and toward getting your illness so that it no longer affects your own life so much that you are convinced that you are this incredible burden and liability to those around you is one simple thing.

Understanding that YOU as a person DID NOTHING WRONG “to deserve this.”

Self blame is going to get you no where but deeper in the hole making it that much further you have to dig out from.

Bipolar disorder is a chemical imbalance in your brain.

There is no way you could have done anything differently to change that.  HOWEVER, depending on when the symptoms began and when you had your first manic episode, or psychotic break, that is where it gets a little bit tricky on determining ultimately why the symptoms decided to show.

There are a lot of different reasons that researchers and doctors attribute to why the disorder comes out full throttle. But, we also know that each one of our cases are completely different than the next.  I mean, if they were identical, then each pDoc,would be able to scribble out the same exact prescription combo for every one of us and then send us on our way because taking the same med cocktail would fix it all.

If only it were that easy.

Since it’s not, then we know that no two cases are the same, which means that the reasons the symptoms popped out vary as well.  Some say environmental factors or situational stressors may trigger the symptoms.  Others may trigger symptoms through substance abuse.

There is NO clear cut, plain as day answer that anyone can give us  as to what exactly triggered the symptoms, and why did they trigger them in me and not one of my siblings.

The longer we sit and keep begging for the answer to “What did I do wrong to deserve this?” the longer we are going to keep digging ourselves into a deep, dark hole that will swallow us up and make it even harder to begin the steps necessary to start our recovery.

TRUST ME!!!! I’ve been there. I’ve done that. And for far too long according to these journals. I wasted so much time wallowing in the whole self pity hole, I’m surprised I had a single friend or family member who hadn’t given up on me.

We can’t keep ourselves stuck trying to find the answer to a question that will never be found. Yes, we can take some time to process it all and take it all it, but then we have to start finding the answers to questions that WE CAN answer, like, what treatment plan is going to work best, what medications will be effective, how much therapy will I need, what type will work best….. and so on.  THOSE are the questions to shift your focus to.

Remember, we did nothing wrong, nor was there anything wrong with us that caused us to have this illness. Yes, it’s going to be difficult at times, but there was nothing we did that caused us to have this.  Now, let’s get to finding the answers we can find!!!!

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How do you rise after the “Big Crash”?

You wake up one morning, look in the mirror, and staring back is remnants of 4 years of ups and downs, job loss, lost loves, lost friendships, not to mention the wear and tear of countless different medication combinations; fear as you look around your room, in your parents house.  That THIS is what you let yourself become after you swore to yourself after your first hospital visit in 2006, when you were diagnosed, that you were NEVER going to let THIS happen.  THIS was your worst fear and it came true.

You were so very fortunate that you had some of your family and a few other friends and loved ones,that hadn’t totally given up on. Despite your writers block and the fact that you had let your beloved websites turn to shit, you had written a few things here and there when inspired, or if asked by other friends and bloggers, but nothing close to what you had been doing before with your sites. The immediate reaction,

“Just give it up. Throw in the towel because there is no way to resurrect ANYTHING!!! It’s too far gone now.”

So I did the “poor me” thing, locked myself away from everyone and everything, and sunk even deeper.  I had two more back procedures done with the intent it would to provide more pain relief within 3 weeks. The day after my last procedure, I woke up and grabbed my iPad, a notebook, and a pen.

I HAD A PLAN!!!!

I had spent so much time worrying about having writer’s block and being down because SOME, not all, the posts I had written and submitted to various places were rejected, I had forgotten about the whole other side of social media. The side that helped me with Ask A Bipolar when I first started writing for them, especially the part that had brought even more amazing people and advocates into my life and we all became such good friends. We started our own little group and as our advocacy voices grew, so did our “behind the scenes” friendships.  We were always in contact and we had so many inside jokes. That’s the beauty of the Internet and social media these days; it doesn’t matter where you are physically located, you can be all over the world, yet you can all be in the same place too.  My gosh, it was so obvious it should have whacked me over the head a long time ago.

NETWORKING.

Sounds simple right? I had been out of the loop for so long that I had not been keeping up with the various new pages and organizations on Facebook and the new authors and advocates and such on Twitter.  I didn’t have to be WRITING to still get back into the swing of things again. Having isolated myself for so long and only briefly signing on to the various social media accounts to share a post or retweet something here or there really wasn’t helping me.  I had my websites Facebook pages set up so whatever I posted there automatically was posted on Twitter, so I rarely signed on there, even though I had tweets going. And the group of advocate friends, I missed them dearly.

So that is where it began. I started making lists of people I had heard a lot about, but didn’t know personally, I began researching different organizations that I was beginning to see a lot more about, and just started putting myself back out there too.  After spending so much time alone and sinking further into isolation, I tried to think back to what I did the last time I had felt so alone, and what I did to change that, and the answer was, I found Ask A Bipolar. With Ask A Bipolar, I didn’t always have to write, but I did communicate and socialize and network, and when I was able to, I did write.

BACK TO THE BASICS

The key that I was missing here was so simple I just kept overlooking it because I thought there had to be something greater or better to pull me back up because of how far down I was. But it really isn’t. It’s all a matter of going back to the basics. I just had to sign back on to Facebook and Twitter and start reading, researching, following along, and interacting.

THE HUGE RELIEF

Since I have put this new plan into action, I have felt an enormous sense of relief. I don’t constantly feel like a failure because I didn’t get a post up that day, or I didn’t get all the emails answered. The self imposed pressure is gone and I’ve actually been able to write MORE. Well, when I say more, I don’t necessarily mean lots of posts or any books any time soon. I just mean that in the last couple of months, I’ve written a bit more frequently than I have in the last few years.

NOW WHAT?

Well, I have my plan started and I have follow through with what I have and then build on it.  I’ve learned that I can’t keep expecting to go from faceplant to 100% functioning overnight. It’s going to take a step by step plan and it’s going to take my dedication and patience and perseverance to keep going. So, I have to stop hiding from the world and I need to continue working on social networking as I have been doing.

I will continue to try and write submit things again.  If I am fortunate enough to get it selected, then I will be honored.  If I get rejected again, I will try again when I feel the time is right, but I won’t let the rejection stop me. I’m just taking it one step at a time.

LESSON LEARNED:

When you have bipolar, you WILL have crashes. Some will be worse than others. Some you will bounce back quickly from, some will take longer. Some you will lose a lot, some you will lose very little. Some of you will hurt others, some will be forgiven and some won’t. The aftermath of a crash is never pretty. I wish I could say otherwise.

I know that this crash has been by far my worst crash ever. I have lost a lot of things, most of which I can never get back. There are a lot of things that I miss and I wish I had done differently as well, but, I can’t change the past, I can only change the future. I just hope that this plan will work better than any of my others.

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When I’m Sorry Is No Longer Enough

Sometimes in relationships, the words “I’m Sorry” begin to lose their meaning. In some cases, can even mean nothing when we keep using them so flippantly as a quick band-aid, but then don’t follow through and change those actions or behaviors. In many situations, you can be saying I’m sorry, all while knowing that those words don’t mean anything to the other person anymore.  It’s just an “auto fill” statement that comes out when you want to just forget about what happened and move on; and heck it worked in the past, so why wouldn’t it work again?

Well, you might think that your “I’m sorry,” is going to end your issue. It will wrap it up with a nice little bow where it will be placed deep into the back of the closet where all the other neatly resolved issues are stacked, but you can not forget that the other party has feelings too, and yes, at some point they may get tired of the standard “I’m Sorry” protocol if you begin to use that basically ad nauseum for everything and anything.

After a long period of acting out with the “I’m Sorry,” quickly to follow, they may begin to think that the only way they will be able to feel better is by making you hurt more than you have hurt them.  The other party may lash out like you have never seen before because this time, your behavior was finally the straw that broke the cliche “camel’s back.” Maybe you deserve it, maybe you don’t, but at some point, unless  some serious change follows the phrase “I’m sorry,” it becomes meaningless and almost insulting when said.  Why insulting?  Because the flippant use can make the other person feel like their feelings, emotions or views/stands/opinions do not matter to you because nothing ever changes.  Day in and day out, everything still stays the same no matter how many times or how many different ways you say “I’m sorry.”

Maybe I was horrible before I got professional help for my issues, maybe I still am horrible in the eyes of some, but the only thing I can say I am guilty of is trying to make things better and genuinely mean it, and giving my all to make everyone sees that I was a different person then and have made incredible progress from where I had started.

 Unfortunately, once you break someone’s trust, or hurt them so badly, they just don’t care anymore, and when the words “I’m sorry” are uttered yet again, it no longer holds any meaning or has any effect on them.

So then what do you say  or do to try to make things right? What can you say? When you are asked to admit to things that are untrue, what can you say? No matter what you say, they don’t believe you because your track record sure seems to show that in certain situations, your words are meaningless.  There is no value or merit to what you say.  There is no more last shot. You had it and blew it. Now it’s time to live with it.

Living with bipolar disorder, there are so many times you have to say I’m sorry.

When that certain mood comes around and turns you into this strange creature that is absolutely not the real you, it’s like someone or something has jumped inside your body and taken over.  If you haven’t been diagnosed yet, that can be scary as hell because you don’t know what is going on.  When you have those swings so many times, and have no plausible explanation for the chaos going on inside your head, that “I’m sorry” runs really thin, really quick.

However, when you take the time to figure out WHAT the chaos is, and finally get diagnosed, that “I’m Sorry” should hopefully, gradually become less and less frequent. You should be learning how to manage your moods and if you are in a relationship, they too should be learning what your triggers are and how to help manage your mood so that you don’t get to the point of the meaningless “I’m sorry.”  It is definitely a team effort.  The person who has bipolar can not do it all on their own.  If they are constantly put in situations where there are lots of triggers, how could you reasonably expect them to stay calm? Lack of knowledge can really harm the relationship and learning a few key things about it can enhance a relationship so much and prevent those constant apologies.

I learned (the hard way of course) , that no matter what, “I’m sorry” wears thin and sometimes you don’t get a second chance for someone to see and accept change.

Once the words  “I’m sorry” no longer mean anything, that is when you know you have messed up bad and there really is no going back.  You can spend the next 5-10 years of your life trying and begging for someone to just take a closer look at you and see the difference, but, if you have broken their trust, then it most likely will fall upon deaf ears.

Some people give second chances, others don’t.  You have to be prepared, at all times, for the person who doesn’t give the second chance so you don’t make the mistakes to begin with.  I was very, very blessed and fortunate to have a lot of people who did give me a second chance and didn’t give up on me.

The one thing that I can advise you to not do, above all things, when dishing out the apologies, NEVER apologize for things you did NOT do or for being who you are now, because right now, you are a different person than you were 5 minutes ago, 5 days ago, and 5 years ago.  Just as others change, we change too.  We may have bipolar disorder, but that alone does not prevent us from changing. The only thing preventing us from changing is our own mindset and our own desire and efforts to make the changes.

“I’m Sorry,” gets old really fast when there is no change to follow.

It really is only a matter of time before your friends and loved ones just become numb, or they walk away all together.  Either way, it is not healthy for either party in the relationship.  My last nugget of advice is that before you start dishing out the “I’m sorry” lines, make sure that you are committed to really making the change for what you are sorry about.  Actions speak louder than words. Make them both count.

 

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Why I Hate Hollywood……yet can’t stay away *sigh*

They are liars.  Yes folks.  They lie there.  They make these movies and make these characters that are just too perfect.  Then, we watch these movies and when our life doesn’t compare to the perfection in their movies, we are miserable.  Hollywood makes us miserable because we are trying to attain the illusions they put in front of us.  Thats all they are!  Illusions.  The movies are supposed to make us feel good, supposed to make us laugh, and we are supposed to relate to the characters.  Sure, I relate to the characters.  I relate to the one that always gets the raw end of the deal, the one with the broken heart at the end, the one who ends up fighting the world on her own.  I’m never the character that gets taken care of.  I’m always the one taking care of everyone else.  I’m not the one who gets the romantic gestures.  I get ignored text messages, ignored emails, and get told to do more, be more.

I watched Love and other Drugs last night.  While I don’t have Parkinson’s, I do have bipolar.  I was in the hospital.  I am on many medications.  I have good days and bad days.  I cry a lot certain times, other times I laugh a lot.  Some days, I don’t even want to get out of bed because I hate myself so much.  I watched Jake Gyllenhall and sobbed.  Not because the movie was sad, but because I was so mad that Hollywood would make a character like that when surely, one just doesn’t exist.  I have not seen a male who would be like that with a woman who was sick.  Do they really exist?  Right now, I think that Hollywood is lying to us, because I haven’t seen one.  I’ve always assumed that one like that doesn’t exist.   Even in my darkest days and the worst of the worst, I’m expected to still go to work, come home, make dinner and carry on as if I’m feeling 100%.   Anytime I’m asked what is wrong, if my response includes anything that pertains to medication or a “cycle”, its treated as if I’m making it up and then the attitude of annoyance lingers the rest of the night.  I didn’t see any of that happening in that movie.

While I know that Hollywood makes these characters to draw us in, and that they don’t really exist, I still can’t help but be sad that a person like that doesn’t exist.  It doesn’t seem like that would be asking too much of anyone to have a heart like that, but in this day, it unfortunately is.  If there is such a person, or one even close, then perhaps I’m wrong.  I just have never met one.

I will say this though, I’m tired of taking care of everyone and trying to keep myself on the right track.  I mean, physically and mentally.  I wish there was someone to help take care of me.  I need someone to help take care of me.  My energy and drive for it, is all gone.  The expectations of having to carry on like “business as usual” when I am feeling my worst and to make sure that everything to further everyone else’s goals is  now too heavy.  Flying on someone else’s coat tails with all of my energy focused and everything I do directed toward others successes and less and less for any of mine has drained me.  With the end result at the end of the day being making sure that everyone else is happy and not complaining and one step closer to their goals, and mine are pushed farther and farther away and left  in the dust.  When people tell you that all they ever see and hear about is how you have taken your life and are living it based on other goals and dreams and that anything you have wanted to pursue has been sacrificed, how do you answer?  Especially when you don’t feel deserving of any of it.  How do you accept that people tell you there are other Jake Gyllenhals out there and that I don’t have to sacrifice everything for everyone around me?  How can I accept that I have been making myself sicker because of all the situations that I have put myself in?  That Hollywood isn’t really too far off, but some of us just need the courage to believe in ourselves and believe that we don’t HAVE to carry the problems of everyone we know on our shoulders and that those that love us should be supportive of us, appreciative of us, and should take us and our goals into consideration as well (and not just into consideration on what we can do for them).

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This is all probably just babble, but I found this post and it had been written a few years ago and I never posted it.  But, why not post it.  I had a rude awakening on Friday and Yesterday presented more confirmation of that awakening.   *sigh*  Sometimes The Bipolar Hot Mess doesn’t have all the answers.  Sometimes she GIVES the best advice, but doesn’t listen to any of it for herself.  Who knows what tomorrow shall bring.  All we can do is hope, pray, and wait.

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