Monday, January 28, 2013

Be Jealous

I'm tired. I want to cry because my shoulder aches. My feet are throbbing. My back is strained. And I started to feel a little sorry for myself. I was also feeling a little jealous of others.  Today I heard or read about the following things:

  • A friend's three week trip to Honduras.
  • A friend's 10 day meditation retreat along with an upcoming three week trip to France.
  • A friend's upcoming trip to India. 
  • A friend's shopping spree. 
  • A friend's great birthday & all the gifts she either bought herself or received from others.
  • A friend who doesn't have to work full-time while going to college.
  • A friend who gets to be home with her kids after school.
  • A friend who just returned from a fabulous girls weekend. 
So, yah - feeling a little envious. Not that I want to take a three week trip to another country - that's not really my thing. Mostly I'd just like to have the time AND the money to take three weeks off work and do something relaxing and fun. And I'd love to go shopping for some fun stuff - my wardrobe is lacking in clothes that fit well, aren't stained or ripped or just out dated, my bedroom walls are bare, etc. I worked full-time and raised kids while going to college. 

But then I stopped to think about the other things I heard or read today. A relationship is ending & the person is devastated. A friend is raising an autistic son pretty much completely alone while working a full-time job. Someone's family member has cancer.Someone is ill. Someone is having to make a choice between paying bills and taking their child to the doctor. Someone desperately wants kids but is realizing it's probably not going to happen for her.

And I realized that some people are, and maybe other people should be, jealous of me because...
  • I'm exhausted and achy because I filled in a shift at the coffee house. Two out of three of the volunteers bailed on their commitment for one reason or another. I'm tired because I got to be of service and help raise funds to end sex trafficking. What better reason is there to be tired than that of helping others? And how fortunate am I to be able to give my time?
  • I'm broke partly because I splurged a little this paycheck. I bought Hellion a birthday present (which resulted in a present for me as well - since buying two was a MUCH better deal than buying one). And I rented a jacuzzi suite for a nice relaxing night last weekend. I also donated to two different groups and watched a homeless man's face light up when I stopped traffic at the stop light to give him a few dollars.  I'm broke because my bills are paid and I have groceries and gas. At least I could cover my necessities without having to make a choice between paying my electric bill and taking my child to the doctor.
  • I was surprised last weekend with an amazing day of wine tasting in Napa Valley. The weather was perfect and I had a wonderful time.
  • Other people say they don't have time for things, but they can't really tell you why that is. I can tell you. I don't have time for much because I volunteer two nights a week and am working on a certain kind of  recovery in my life. I take notes, provide refreshments and serve as a representative for a meeting I attend. I work a full-time job. I spend time with my youngest. And occasionally I sleep. Less occasionally I work out.
  • I reached out to others today to remind them that they're beautiful and that they aren't alone. For a few it was just what they needed right when they needed it most.
  • Others reached out to me today, listened to me, hugged me, and reminded me that I am beautiful and strong and not alone.
  • My kids are healthy and happy. They may make me question my sanity at times, but I am so blessed to have them in my life. 
  • I have so many people in my life who love me for who I am, accept me flaws and all, and who forgive me my many mistakes. 
I am a blessed being. And my biggest hope for my life is that I am somehow a blessing to someone every single day of my life. 

One last thing? It's WAY past my bedtime, so excuse the run on sentences, poor grammar, and lack of photos to break things up. Good night, my lovelies, good night.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Just Get Over It said the Moron

My last post came after a day that comes a little too frequently, but at least not nearly as often as it did in the past. It was me trying to explain how I sometimes can't function. It was me, nicely, trying to point out to people that I have a disorder and not just an attitude problem. But today I don't feel so nice. I basically just want to say a big "FUCK OFF" to those people who don't get it but seem to think they do.

It's okay that many of you don't get it - you have no idea what it feels like to have your brain and emotions not work "normally". I'm seriously happy that you don't deal with this shit. I appreciate those who say, "I don't get it, Inelegant. I don't know what bipolar disorder or depression o even sever anxiety are like. I wish I could help you."  But I am really fed up with people who tell me to snap out of it. People who tell me to just say some affirmations each morning. People who feel the need to remind me of what I have in my life to be grateful for and tell me I just need to be more grateful. People who tell me I focus too much on myself and that's why I have these days.

People! I suffer from bipolar disorder and social anxiety. As much as I would love for this to be "just an excuse" that I use to try to get away with things in life, it's just not that simple. I do not want to wake up in the morning feeling paralyzed and overwhelmed. Or so tired even rolling over in bed takes too much energy. I don't want to use every ounce of energy I have that day just trying to seem like a normal person and get through a normal day without freaking out or crying. I'm tired of feeling angry when I should be sad. Or sad when I should be angry. Or angry and/or sad when I should be happy. I rarely feel actual excitement - I usually just say I'm excited because it's what is expected. I don't want to look at people I care about and think, "I hate you! Get away from me!" or "You're such a freaking moron? Do you ever actually use your brain?" And then the energy to keep those thoughts from exploding from my mouth? Because I know they aren't real. I know they'll pass and I'll be so glad I didn't let it out!

Fortunately, I mostly feel better these days. If I sleep well, eat regularly, do at least moderate exercise, and take my medications I can keep these "episodes" to a minimum. But I can tell you that I do say affirmations and I am grateful, and that isn't enough to battle this disorder.

I've led a pretty good life. I get that. Even my illness isn't as bad as many others have it. While it may take all the energy I have to function some days, I still am able to do it most of the time.  I sit behind a computer all day. I don't have to wax people's private parts, stick my hands in mouths, touch people's feet, or wipe butts for my living (kudos to those of you who do these things regularly - I just couldn't do it). I haven't lost anyone really close to me. I wanted children and had no problems having them. I've never been abused in any way. I don't have disabled children. When I talk to people who deal with hardship, I don't get it. I haven't dealt with it before. But I sure as hell won't tell them to buck up, or it's not as bad as they think, or they should be grateful for what they do have... I'll tell them I'm sorry, that I don't know what it's like but that I do want to help in any way I can, even if it's just listening or running an errand or sitting there quietly holding their hand.

And that's what I have to say about THAT!