Crystal Lynn enters, stage left

I said in my last post, first one in a long time, that things were getting better because I’m learning and putting into practice ways to cope.

There is still so much drama in my life it is unbearable at times, like last weekend.  I can’t even write about it because the anxiety still bubbles up and fills me.  I was so depressed it wasn’t looking good for me.  My medicine is working, I know the difference between meds screwing up my mood and other depression caused by rejection, fear, feeling, lonely, confusion and stress.  My narcissist ex-husband the cause of all of it. It was bad.

I was doing that pathetic crying again., Where you don’t make a sound or move and the tears role down your cheeks.  I tried not to give in to it.  I knew I should try all the “tricks”, but I couldn’t even do that.

Sunday morning around 11am it was either this or me.  Dead serious.

So I got into bed, watched reruns of “The Big Bang Theory” and waited.

I’m not sure how long it took or why it started to happen, but I started to come around a little bit.  Nothing like a phoenix rising from the ashes, but clawing out from under the earth and reaching the surface.  Very dramatic, but that is how it was feeling.

Just that little breath of air from the surface began to clear my head.  I meditated for 5 minutes, crying.  I read a little book I have about 50 mindful ways to calm.  And then I remembered, Crystal Lynn.

Crystal Lynn is my alter ego that I developed to stop being so, well, being me.  She doesn’t have a job, sits on her porch all day surrounded by cars on cinder blocks, smokes and does what she wants.

I needed her because she says things like “Who cares?” and “Fuck you!” and “Fuck that”. If she says it enough it feels real, I stop caring and I can breathe a little more. When she’s thinking for me I reach that calmness.  It’s amazing how she can practically soften blood pounding in my head, pain when I breath in and my pounding heart.

In my already delicate mental state, a teen age transgender daughter/son (I’ll tell that story sometime) working two jobs, narcissist ex-husband that despises me…I’ve got to stop writing about it again, my chest is beginning to constrict.

On top of all that…I made my self-crazy with anxiety, because trying to be the best at everything and usually failing I fell into that vicious cycle.

Crystal Lynn doesn’t handle the bigger situations as well, but I cause almost the same symptoms with the little things as well as big things.

Example of a little thing that I made into a big thing:

My son’s college graduation. I knew my ex-husband would be there and then I found out the night before that my ex-in-laws were coming as well. I started trying on outfits, using it as a way to redirect my anxiety (didn’t realize that was what I was doing).  I tried on all my clothes and shoes. Nothing fit because I’ve lost so much weight, but still lumpy in places.  Worrying about where I was going to sit, what time should I arrive, where were they sitting, what if I saw them, what if they were there for pictures…. spinning out of control as usual.

Enter Crystal Lynn,. She said, “Just wear something you will be comfortable in, John knows what you look like and there isn’t anyone else that you have to impress or even cares what you are wearing.”  Now anyone could have already said that before, but it’s a magical feeling to feel it and do it with absolutely no second thoughts, almost as if I came up with it myself!

I think people with anxiety and/or PTSD reactions will totally understand how a small thing, or in my case, all small things connected to John start to get on that endless circle only picking up speed with each pass.

I wore my comfortable outfit that fit. White jeans and black cardigan. At the last minute my dad said he was going with me.  I fought the physical reactions, took half a clonazepam, parking no problem.

We sat with my son’s wife’s family, didn’t look around and I don’t think I was spotted. Took pictures with Tristan.  In laws and John showed up.  I was aloof and took the high road (hate that road).

Thanks, Crystal Lynn, please come again.

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Another One of Those First World Problems

I feel complaining about insignificant things and labeling them “FWP” exonerates me from being a whiny spoiled person living in the best place in the world.  I’m also a jaded ex-catholic, so there is already a layer of guilt underneath everything I say and do.  

I want to post this for another reason.  With the hell I’ve been going through for the past year from medication side effects, divorce, being ostracized by my children and doing all of this in a delicate mental condition, I welcome superficial trivial problems. 

Here is one now:

Well, so far this is a very good day! I colored my hair this week from an online hair color boasting it is just like the professional color. I don’t know why I bother. The brown of my hair turned out beautifully but the white came out a light brownish reddish. Anyway……I used the last of my root concealer two days ago (forgot all about covering my roots on Tuesday and was out doing errands for four hours). Luckily I wasn’t aware so had all of the confidence of a good looking person. Back to my roots (pardon the pun) I was even debating wearing one of Allison’s hats to hit the Walgreens early before too many people were there to get a new can of concealer. In the bathroom I took one more last ditch effort, fingers crossed, to look in the bathroom closet.  There it was buried under cold medicine…..half a can!!!  Halejuha!

Dear Life:  please keep bringing on those kind of problems.  I really need a break.  xoxo

A Serious Discussion

Emily and I had a discussion the other day about revealing my Bipolar Disorder II to people. “People” means the people I know. I worry that if they know I have this mood disorder they will view me differently.

My daughter, I believe because of heredity, has a little OCD and General Anxiety. She tells people in her life about it. She thinks it is important to educate about mental illness and she feels that it will make a difference as far as how some people view it.

I have a different tano-more-stigma-10ke on it though. I am afraid to tell even my closest friends about my illness. I am afraid they will misunderstand and think I will strip down naked and run down the street with a knife.  Actually, I hate to admit it, but before I was diagnosed with this disorder, I thought the same thing.

Just like everyone is told by top news stories, the perpetrator of mass murders, etc. are often reported as having a bipolar illness.  The general public sees that and assumes the worst.  Who can blame them?  There are so many variables that are not reported.  Predisposition to violence, access to weapons, psychotic breaks, not medicated, etc.

Writing this blog is the farthest I can go right now.  I feel very protective of my situation. Maybe one day.

The Final Cocktail

I think this final cocktail of medicine is really working for me. One side effect of being so level is I have nothing to write about anymore. At least not anything from my old point of view. I just wanted to let everyone know to hang in there if you are waiting for more frequent installments from me. As history probably will repeat it’s self I should be writing again next month.

I went to my doctor today and told him I was feeling really good, but as I said that I felt kind of embarrassed. I tell him the same thing every other visit. Last time it was crushing anxiety, then happy and before that terrible depression. He tweaks the drugs and councils as he has been doing for years. I do like him because he trusts me and, therefore, I trust him.

It didn’t used to be that way. For the first few years of being diagnosed with Bipolar II I was very rebellious. I knew I wasn’t happy with my old self but I felt so flat with my new self. After 44 years one does get used to the ups and downs no matter how they destroyed me. I rebelled by screwing around with my medicine and dosages to try to get a little “life” back into my life. I know I didn’t used to drink wine every night like I have been for the past 5 years. I know why I do it. It is to change my feelings. It is a little blast from the past of the old days. I wonder at what point do I start to worry about the wine? My sister says, “Oh for goodness sake, let yourself have one crutch”. She doesn’t worry about it so I won’t.

The next step will be enjoying the new strength I feel when I have to go up to the customer service and exchange something, get gas in the car, etc. I know it sounds crazy. Anxiety is brutal on normal day to day activities.

Intuition

I am always a great preacher of following one’s intuition and gut feelings. This time though I failed, miserably!

Allison wanted to spend the night with a friend I disapproved of. Nothing major had happened with this friend, just a general feeling of unease. Allison had recently been disappointed by her best friend and was feeling lonely. John and I discussed it and decided she could go.

Around 8:30 that night Allison called and said she wanted to come home because she had fallen off a bike and was hurt. I was not prepared for the extent of the road rash she had all down her back, seat and thigh. At the emergency room she cried when they washed the wounds. She has not being able to lie on her back since last Friday. She has been in terrible pain.

The point of this story is I feel culpable. I held out not letting her go over there for the first 6 weeks of summer. My soft heart (and brain) took over.  This is a good example of never giving in when you know deep in your soul something is just not quite right.

Repentance. Penitence. Contrition.

Brain Waves

I was cleaning the inside of the microwave this afternoon and a thought crossed my mind.

How would my life have been different if I had known what was wrong with me earlier? Gone to college? Not had kids at 20? Not made every wrong choice that could have possibly been made by a woman in the beginning of her adult life?

It’s sad to think of it this way.  I really don’t have very many regrets in my life, but this defiantly fits in that category.

I’m trying to see it in a more positive light.  What would I be like today if I hadn’t had such a difficult time? Would I be boring (worse than death)?  Would I be unkind or whinier than I already am?

I don’t know.  I do have a lot of decades ahead of me at this point.  I hope I can find out “what would’ve been” by doing it now.

Exasperation

I am exasperated. Nothing earth shattering, just irritated…generally irritated.

First off, I have the most annoying of annoying co-workers that I need to punch in his throat.  The fantasy just isn’t cutting it anymore.

I want to eat carbs!  I’m going to die if I don’t have a piece of bread today!  If I have to have another fat free yogurt or a grilled chicken breast I’ll end up face down on the kitchen floor sobbing.

I finally love exercising. That scares and sickens me…

Every evening for the last four years (a coincidence, I think not) I’ve had a glass or two of wine.  It’s become a boring habit.  What other vice can I possibly replace the wine with?  Cigarettes? Tried it, doesn’t work.  Meth? Too vain.  Sex? John couldn’t handle that much of me (wink)! Exercise? Already doing it.  Whiskey?  I’ll try it, but I’m not happy about it.

Just as I was getting to the stage of venom dripping from my keyboard, my  family life crept in again in the form of my favorite son, Tristan.  He came into the room and sat down right next to me with his laptop.  I did move to the other side of the couch, but he had already cramped my style.  Then there came John  and he flipped on the tv to watch the game.  I put my headphones on and tried to crawl back into the bitchy little cave I’d constructed.  It didn’t work, couldn’t get my vibe back.

I have a feeling this mood is not over. Oh no, it is definitely is not over.