I’m trying to prepare myself with the Fourth of July coming up. I’m not a big fan of large groups of people, so I usually stay home to celebrate. I’m not sure how Achilles would handle the fireworks. This will be our first experience with him during fireworks. I don’t think he will bark because he almost never does, but I’m not sure if he will be scared or anxious.
We just moved into a new house, and it is in a great neighborhood. Throughout the previous years, we had to deal with all sorts of people setting off their own fireworks as well as listening to gunshots. I would jump all the time because the noises made me so nervous. Luckily, we live in a much better neighborhood. We won’t hear gunshots in this new neighborhood, which is such a relief. There’s still some anxiety, but celebrating the holiday will be much easier this year.
Another family get-together today. It’s my step-daughter’s boyfriend’s (the father of my granddaughter) birthday today. I think he turns 27. This time I’ll be going to the gathering alone since my husband is working. I really like this guy; he’s a great father. Plus, I’m going to ask him a bunch of questions about my granddaughter since she sleeps over tomorrow night. I want to know everything about her schedule; how often she eats, when she sleeps, what helps her sleep, etc.
I set up the play pen in our bedroom yesterday. It fits perfectly. Hopefully I can borrow the high-chair from my mother-in-law and bring it home with me today. I want to be as prepared as possible.
Suicidal ideations are not something that is talked about a lot. I know that I won’t talk about it in my support group because I don’t want the facilitator to have me admitted to the hospital. Since I’m not comfortable talking about it in my support group, I thought I would try to do it here. I’m not actually a danger to myself. It’s not something I want to do, it’s just something I think about.
I deal with suicidal ideations on a daily basis. For some reason, my brain keeps thinking about suicide. I think about how and when to do it, but after I think about that, I think about my mom and my husband. I could never do that to them. For me, they are more than a good enough reason to stay alive. I just wish I could get my brain to stop thinking about suicide. I think I’ve been dealing with these thoughts for more than a year this time. It’s exhausting.
As I prepare to go on vacation, I feel excitement begin to flow through my body. Very soon, I will be sitting on the beach and actually relaxing. I’ve made checklists of everything that has to get done before I leave. I have already counted all my meds and refilled the ones that would have run out while I’m away. I’ve started trying on some clothes to figure out what I want to pack. I was worried that trying on clothes would be difficult because of my weight gain, but more clothes fit me than I thought would. What a nice surprise!
I have to make sure everything gets done over the next couple of days. It’s a lot to do, but it will be a stressful vacation if I don’t get everything done that needs to be done while I’m away. I’m looking forward to relaxing. Part of me wonders if I even know how to relax anymore. Soon, when my view is the picture above, I’m sure I’ll figure out how to let go a little and relax.
The past few days have been very difficult. Last week, I felt like I was passing time and going through the motions. Now, I seem to be fighting to get through each moment. I think it’s because I know I’m about to go on vacation. I know that I struggle when my schedule changes. However, my schedule hasn’t even changed yet. I’m just caught up trying to prepare for vacation. There’s too much to get done. I feel overwhelmed, like I’m drowning. But I do know that it will all work out; I just need to hang on and stay organized.
I have so much to do before I leave for vacation. It starts with making a packing list, and then a to-do list of all the errands and tasks I need to get done. I love to-do lists. If it’s not written down, then it’s not going to get done. I will probably start all of that tomorrow. The biggest task is figuring out all my medications for the trip. I’ll be gone for 10 days, and it would not be good if I run out of meds.
My favorite quote comes from Franz Kafka, possibly from his book, “The Metamorphosis”, but it could have been from another one of his works. I’m not positive that it’s originally from him or not, but that’s as far back as I can trace it. Kafka said, “Better to have, and not need, than to need, and not have.” I actually try to live my life based off of this quote. I’m not sure exactly what the quote was originally meant to explain. To me, it means to plan and be prepared for life, because anything can happen at any time. It’s important to always be prepared for any situation. For example, I don’t always know how long I’m going to be out, so it’s best to bring my medications with me just in case. I also take pain medication and see my doctor every 3 weeks for treatment. Sometimes, I get a refill on my pain meds before I’m out, because I don’t want to run out before I see her again. It’s better to have them and not need them, than need them and not have them. I can apply this quote to just about any aspect of my life. Being prepared, in my opinion, is always helpful.
The quote is popular it was even made into a song called, “It’s better to have, and don’t need” sung by many different artists including Don Covay, Huey Lewis & The News, Barbara Lynn, Sam Moore & Bruce Springsteen to name a few. I can see than many people interpret this quote to be about protecting oneself. For me, the quote can mean something as simple as remembering to grab my keys when I leave the house, just in case my husband doesn’t have his. This quote reminds me to be prepared in every aspect of my life, which is something I struggle with, especially when I’m dealing with depression.
Franz Kafka (1883 – 1824) is from Prague; he was a German speaking novelist and also wrote many short stories. I had to read a lot of his works throughout college, and I actually enjoyed them, at least the parts that I understood. I’m curious what this quote means to others people. How do you feel about it? How can/do you apply it to your own life?
Maintaining routines is extremely helpful to me; it is a great way to help manage bipolar disorder. Routines require ideas, plans, and action; these things keep us active and help us to feel good when we accomplish our daily tasks. I know I should follow my routine more strictly by keeping to a regular sleep schedule and eating on a regular schedule, but those things are very difficult for me to regulate.
The routine that I do keep may not be as structured as it should be, but it works for me. First of all, I go to the same stores that I always go to when I run errands, even if they are further away or more expensive. I do that because I’m comfortable going to stores I know. I like to write in the mornings and evenings. I take the dog for a walk late at night; he has a reflective harness for our safety. I also try to run errands during the day before the stores get busy. Then I can do household chores later in the day. Every night, I write a to-do list for the following day. As I complete my tasks the next day, I cross them off my list. My to-do lists allow me to create a plan for the next day that I can take action on and complete.
I try to keep my routine flexible so that it’s easier when I have major changes. It’s more like a plan or structure instead of a strict routine. I’m not good with change, most of us aren’t. When I keep a very strict routine, I have a hard time when it comes to seeing family and friends. My flexible routine allows me to manage my life while still being able to get together with others, even at the last minute. I know it would be beneficial if I went to bed at the same time every night and ate at the same time every day. These are things that I can work on. Everybody is different, and everyone has different needs.
Right now, I’m visiting my family, so my routines are all messed up. I have lots of things I want to get done, so I made a to-do list as always. Hopefully, that will help me keep some structure in my life while I’m away. I’ve been trying to plan things such as visits with people, but it hasn’t been working very well. Some things have to be left up to chance.
I’m trying to plan ahead, trying to get ready to go away again for 8 days. I always try to pack for any situation; you never know what you’ll need while you’re away. I’m even going to a different climate, making it even more difficult to pack. I have to go through my closets to find some long sleeve shirts in case it gets cold. I also have to find my suitcase that is somewhere in my garage. I’ve written out the list of everything I need to pack including toiletries, clothes, shoes, medicine, and extras. My plan is to lay everything out on the guest bed and check things off as I pack them in my suitcase.
I still have errands to run. My weekly prescription went through yesterday without any problems, which is the first time that happened problem free. I have to go grocery shopping and pick up my script today. I also want to go shopping for some clothes, mainly pants, if I have the time. All of that has to be done by the end of today. Tomorrow, I’m spending a good portion of the day with my in-laws; it’s my stepdaughter’s first Mother’s Day, and I won’t be available on Mother’s Day to be with any in-laws. I don’t like leaving things to the last minute. Tuesday morning I have to leave for the airport; I will need to be completely packed by Monday night and have my clothes for the day left out on the dresser. I plan on having everything laid out on the bed by the end of the day, and then simply packing everything by the end of the day tomorrow. A few things will be left out that I need in the morning; otherwise I will be ready to go.
While it’s important that I pack everything I could possible need, I also have to make sure I set my husband up so that he has everything he could need. I don’t have to do these things for my husband, but since he works and I don’t, I feel that I should do these things for him. I like to make sure my husband has all the food that he’ll need. I also have a couple of bills to take care of before I leave.
I’ve been told that I plan too much, but I don’t think that’s possible. I’ve been told that some things you can’t plan for, which is probably right, but there’s no harm in trying to plan. The way I plan is by making lists. I’m a very visual person and if it’s written down then it will get done. I try to think of every situation, like going out somewhere fancy and bringing back birthday/holiday gifts, to make sure I will have everything I need. I always believe it’s better to have something and not need it than need something and not have it.
I have so many things to get done in a limited amount of time. So many things, such little time to do it in; we’ve all heard that before, we’ve all probably said that before. Right now, that seems to be my life, except I feel frozen. I’m struggling to get things done, even some of the smallest things. All I can think about is all of the other tasks I need to complete. It’s weird to have your brain running so fast but also be frozen at the same time. What do I do now? Where do I start? Sometimes I feel as if I’m outside of my own body. I feel as if I’m looking at myself and all the things I need to do, and still can’t get it all done.
I feel off, something feels off and I can’t pinpoint it. Is it because I forgot to take my Clozapine two nights ago? Maybe it’s because I’m on a time schedule? It could be because I’m dealing with what appears to be a minor depressive episode, hopefully it doesn’t get worse. It could just be because I’m about to go on another trip to visit my family. I love my family and we get along wonderfully, but it’s still stressful. I’m really looking forward to seeing my family. I can’t wait to have one-on-one time with my mom, nieces, nephew, aunt, grandma, and more. There are so many people to see, and I have only one week to get it all done in.
My best friend from high school just reached out to me and she wants to get together for lunch while I’m back where I grew up. I haven’t seen or talked to this girl since I was 17 or 18 years old. Now, she wants to catch up and that worries me. Now that I think about it, this is probably why I’m having so many issues right now. This is overwhelming. I tend to have anxiety attacks when I go visit my friends that I see regularly, what will happen when if I visit with someone I haven’t seen or talked to in over a decade. Thank goodness for Valium. I don’t take it that often when I’m in my normal surroundings, but I know I will go through quite a lot while I’m away. I won’t take more than I’m supposed to, but I’m allowed two 10 mg pills a day, and that is a lot to me.
Returning from a trip is exhausting. There is so much to catch up on, but I still have to unpack. We got home late last night; my husband went to go lay in bed after helping to empty the car. I decided it would be a better idea to unpack right then, than waking up to all of that work. As I was unpacking, my husband realized that we forgot something, a very important something, in the hotel. He was very upset about it, and I understood. I think I will drive back there today to go get it, if they still have it. Every time someone gets upset, I automatically think it’s because of me; I always feel as if I’m responsible, even when I’m not. Just because we got home last night doesn’t mean I have to complete everything I missed while I was away in just one day. There’s nothing wrong with catching up on things over a two or three-day period.
We had a great trip; it was a lot of fun. We went for a hike and saw some really cool hieroglyphics, we went to a ghost town and did a lot of stuff there, we went and saw a couple of movies, and we went to a friend’s wedding. I think the trip was a success. It’s just getting back to your normal life that is the exhausting part. To make matters even more confusing, I’m leaving to go across the country to see my family in 5 days. I can’t wait to see everyone. I love going back home; however, it’s a lot to do in a short amount of time. It will all be worth it in the end. In order to make things easier for my next trip, I should probably start by making a list of everything I need to pack. I should also find my luggage and do the laundry. I should start doing anything that will make my final day or two before I leave a little less stressful.
I should probably take some time for myself today, easier said than done. I don’t really know what that means. Whenever someone asks me what I want to do, I always say, “Whatever you want” or “It doesn’t matter to me”. I do that because I don’t really know what I want to do. Today, I have 12 years sober. It’s hard to believe it’s been that long. I wish I could look back and remember various times in my life, but ECT has made that extremely difficult. I know that it was hell when I was first getting sober and various times throughout the years. Maybe it’s all for the best that I can only remember snippets of things. I still don’t know what I’m going to do for myself today, but it will be something, even if it’s as simple as taking the dog for a nice walk. I need to do something for myself that I enjoy, and not something that has to get done.