hope

Update

I committed in my mind (and on this blog) to try to write everyday of this diet, then I got sick, crazy sick for about a month, and just recently have I started to feel better. In that month of sickness I did not progress very much in our VLC diet, but I did make progress and some discoveries.

  1. I have now lost about 26 lbs. Considering its been about 8 weeks that seems pretty good. and since I had no expectations for myself I am happy with the lose
  2. I am recognizing my true emotional dependence on food and drinks. Now I am not a drinker but there have been times in the last 2 months that I would love a Grey Goose and Tonic with limes. To go with my giant plate of pasta, garlic bread, pizza, chocolate cake and oh wait, I can’t have any of that right now.
  3. Jacob is doing fantastic. He’s lost 65 lbs, and is almost under 400 lbs, which he hasn’t been since before we got married 11 1/2 years ago.
  4. This has nothing to do with the diet. But I am in a pretty good place emotionally. It started before the diet and has justĀ  continued. I can’t say specifically what it is, but I just feel better. And if you’ve suffered from chronic depression, you know how good the days in the sun can feel. I’ve gone off one of my meds, and I am only seeing my therapist about once a month.

So those are some of the discoveries I have found in the last 2 months. I can tell you I am excited to start on real food in 4 weeks, and I am looking forward to the challenge of cooking for my family in the ways we are being taught. I am so grateful that Jacob and I are doing this together, because its the only way it could work.

There you have it, my most recent update. Hoping to be able to do it a little more now that I am not sick as a dog. Take care of yourselves this weekend.

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Survey says…..

Yesterday was the big day, and I will tell you I worked myself up pretty good about going to face the dreaded psychiatrist. It didn’t help that my neck of the woods is in the middle of a bitter cold snap and the appointment was about 40 minutes away and I had to drive on the highway in snowing, blowing BS to get there. But I did it. I got there, sat in the beautiful lobby and waited, and waited, because why wouldn’t he be running behind.

He came out, called my name and my knuckles had turned white from gripping my purse handle for 20 minutes. He led me to his warm office and I sat down just quaking. He asked a lot of questions, some things I would never have thought to ask and after about 45 minutes of that he told me that I am bipolar. Bipolar II to be precise, and that the voice in my head was not a concern because he thinks its a reflection of my inner life being poor and terrible.

Swallowing the words bipolar II was not as hard as I thought it would be, I now have a face with the name and can plan an attack. Reading up on this diagnoses was interesting, like reading a summary of my life. The sad part is that I didn’t know the symptoms, and the only reason most people with Bipolar are diagnosed is that they get so depressed something happens forcing them to seek help finally. Most people with this disorder can go years in this cycle of extreme highs and lows and not know that it is not normal. They push people away and never realize they are doing it. Its a viscous cycle that doesn’t end on its own.

But now I have a place to start and I hope that I can continue to chronicle it here. If you are struggling with depression, don’t wait to seek help, you really aren’t alone, there is a world of us out there that get it and get you.

small victory

So today I woke as I usually do, hurried and running late. But I got ready to leave the house and realized that the dread that has been sitting in my chest for the last few months has dissipated. Yay, small victory. I am hoping its the medication that I was switched to has finally started to work. Or maybe its that the worst of this has passed, but either way, today there is hope again for a better tomorrow.

Sometimes I wish that what I wrote was funny, that people got joy from reading my posts, but I think I will happily accept hope instead. So here’s to hoping you find some peace today, I am going to enjoy today with a nugget of hesitance, but I will try all the same.

yep, that sucked

Today sucked

This weekend sucked

I am not handling stress very well right now and I feel like I am going to shatter into a million pieces if I relax for even one second. I am holding together by a hair, a 1/2 of a hair. I am definitely not well. But I am trying to hold on until tomorrow, when it may be better, when I may have 30 minutes where I do not despair. And for that I am hoping, holding my breath, burying my head in the sand just for tonight to survive until tomorrow. Sometimes its okay to just survive, but tonight I will pray, sleep and rest to begin again tomorrow.

sleepy face

I am so tired today from pretending to be fine. There is some truth to fake it til you make it but I am so deep in this current depression it’s exhausting. Had a therapy session last night and at the end of it I asked my therapist of 2 1/2 years if he thought I was better or worse, he thinks this is the worst that I have ever been. I couldn’t agree more.

Before I started this journey of therapy, drugs and awareness I was depressed, there was no doubt, but I didn’t really know it. I just thought I was emotional and sensitive and I did a lot of damage to myself, my family and friends. Now that I am aware and treating it there is a sense of ignorance was bliss. Because I am aware of myself now its hard because I know how good I can feel and I am not there.

My therapist has suggested that I have depression with psychosis, and if this new regiment of medication doesn’t kick in in about a week he wants me to turn over my meds control to a psychiatrist. That makes me nervous. But whatever, I will do whatever I have to do to break this cycle of depression, paranoia and hyper sensitivity with a focus on major self deprecation.

I told my therapist last night that the best I feel lately is when I am writing because I am not filtering it. It’s flowing without thought of the audience or the phrasing. With the exception of spell checking my posts I am just letting it all out. And if my readers are bored with my rants I do apologize. But this is another avenue of therapy for me.

I also am very aware right now that I am not alone in this struggle. There are people in my life currently suffering with all different stages of mental illness and I know that we can get through this.

So why did I title this post sleepy face, because resting bitch face didn’t seem appropriate because I don’t feel bitchy. I feel scared and tired and sleepy and whiny. And I think if someone put a mirror in front of me right now that is what they would see.

I know that I will get through this dark time, and I know that there are people reading right now who are getting through, have gotten through or are just beginning there own personal walk. As a little inspirational end to today’s post, I know we can do this. I know that if you seek help, or walk, or take your vitamins, meditate, check yourself into the hospital, ask for help or even if you are boot strap puller ( not a phrase, whatever) that you will ride out this wave and the sun will shine again.

Take care of yourselves this weekend, and I will try to do the same. Breathe deep, remember you are not alone.

The last month or so….

I haven’t been able to write about this, but for some reason today seems like a good day. A little over a month ago my Grandmother passed after four years living with dementia. Truly her battle was between her will and her the strength of her body. I hadn’t seen her in 3 years, mainly because I couldn’t handle her not recognizing me. My beautiful Aunt went regularly, and made sure that Grandma was well taken care of in the home she was in. She fought for her fair treatment and brought her treats and reminders of things she loved in her life. Thankfully the passing was painless, physically, but mentally for our family it was a toss up between relief and sorrow.

I would have sworn up until I touched her lapel in her casket that she wouldn’t die, she simply couldn’t because she was the strongest most stubborn women I have ever known. We butt heads constantly but mainly because I too am stubborn and strong headed. As we walked into the viewing room, I turned into my husband chest and wailed that it wasn’t her, couldn’t be her, she was too strong for this. And I was scared, that she wouldn’t look like her.But she did, and she was beautiful and serene.

In an effort to give myself peace I spoke at the funeral, I sang too. Not looking at my Dad because I couldn’t get through the song and speech if I focused on his tears. It was gut wrenching, and beautiful and hard to do. But I am glad I did it. I am glad that I put pen to paper and expressed myself. As I get to do here whenever I see fit.

The weekend after the funeral, my sister, her husband and my niece, and my hubby all went up north to Grandma and Puppa’s cottage, and I swear I was enveloped in memories. I spent much of our time up there thinking about what they had given us, the legacy that they had handed down that we would in turn pass to the next generation. There is no price, weight or measure that could explain it. They gave us this gift of peace, love, fun, wind, trees, and walks down memory lanes that I can never thank them for.

But I can write it here, ink it, and know that I have put it out into the universe.

The Realities

The reality of living with depression, anxiety, mental illness is that you are very hard on yourself. You are constantly asking yourself how you can fix something, how you can be better, how you can get Mr. So&So to like you, or even be nice to you. You tend to be hyper sensitive as well, in that I mean you take things extremely personally. I like the child that stared at me the other day as I was waiting to cash out at the grocery store, he couldn’t take his eyes off of me, and the first thought that floated through my brain was I was scaring him, that my shape or size was freaking him out. It couldn’t possibly be because I looked like someone he knows, or maybe there was a balloon behind me. Nope, in my mind I had done something wrong, and worse I thought about it, a lot, afterwards. So here is my reality, I recognize these traits and while I would want to change these in other people I will always find it hard to change them within myself. Maybe by calling it out and realizing that it is part of my daily reality I can deal with each issues as it comes up. Instead of letting it keep me up at night.

I think another reality is that you will never be able to fully explain to anyone how you truly feel, because that judgement you worry about is always lurking just behind the truth you want to spew. I know that I will always struggle with mental illness, and honestly, I am okay with that because I keep getting new tools in my toolbox to help me in tackling these issues as I go. I will continue to vent and preach here as I need to and seek help also. Because for me the key to living my life on some level of “normal” is to recognize when I am slipping and address it.

It’s a slippery slope this brain of mine, and the chemicals I lack are dearly missed. But with a little help and support and an outlet I know that my reality is manageable, and sometimes wonderful. Being so hard on yourself lends itself to pushing harder, striving for more, being better at things than you thought you could be. It sometimes means that your failures or stumbles seem gigantic, but the farther I walk on this path the more I learn from my slips and trips.

I guess what I am really saying is that I need to take a break on the girl in the mirror and I ask you to take a break on yourselves as well. Keep moving forward, small steps still gets you down the path, I tend to think of the letter from V for Vendetta when I rant like this, but I will repeat my favorite line, again. “But what I hope most of all is that you understand what I mean when I tell you that even though I do not know you, and even though I may not meet you, laugh with you, cry with you, or kiss you: I love you. “