I have been home for five days now, and I still haven’t gone grocery shopping or done laundry. I plan on doing that stuff every day, but for some good reasons, they keep getting pushed to the next day. Yesterday, my husband and I spent the entire day with his mother getting a second opinion on her cancer. We are very grateful that we went there. The Mayo Clinic was wonderful.
Today, we’re having someone come and spray in and outdoors. I think we’re having it done 4 times a year, just to be safe. I keep finding crickets around the house, so I know it’s necessary.
I have to get my monthly Clozapine blood work done soon. I have enough meds to get me through for another 9 days. Instead of pushing myself way too hard, I will make an appointment for Monday and allow myself to catch up on everything else that I missed while I was away.
Today has been a big and busy day. I started off late for my first appointment of the day. I ended up making it to the appointment on time, but I was very rushed to make it there. Once I got there, I had to fill out almost an hour worth of paperwork. Thank goodness my husband was there to help me fill everything out; I can’t remember much with my memory loss. This first appointment was for some back pain I’ve been having. It turns out that my spine is in good shape (yay) and it’s just a muscular problem. I’m now taking a tapering dose of Methylprednisolone for six days. I don’t like adding more medications to what I’m already on, so hopefully it helps.
I had two doctors appointments today. This afternoon was when I started packing for my trip; I leave for Cape Cod tomorrow night. I already have my packing list figured out. I just have to run everything through the dryer to make sure all of the bed bugs are gone (which they are).
I’m excited to be on vacation for a week. I can’t wait to spend all of this time with my mom, my sister and husband, and their kids. The kids are growing up so quickly. I can’t believe that the youngest is 14 years old. While I will be loving my trip and enjoying all of my time on vacation, I’m going to miss my husband while I’m gone. My husband is my rock. He helps me get through everything. I don’t think I could handle life without him. I’m lucky to have him in my life.
I went to a new salon today to get my eyebrows waxed. I did some research and found out that their slowest time of the day is between 2pm and 3pm, so that’s when I went. The store is in a retirement community, so the people there will not make me as nervous as other younger individuals. I still had to take a Valium in order to go, but I did really good while I was there. The woman who I worked with was really nice and easy to understand. I plan on going back there from now on whenever I need anything done by a salon.
There is also a grocery store right next door to this salon. It’s a Bashas’ grocery store, and I know those stores because that’s where we went grocery shopping when I was in an alcohol/drug treatment center. I think I could possible be comfortable going to this grocery store. Plus, it’s a lot closer to our house than where’s I’m currently going. Maybe I’ll have my husband come with me the first time, just to make me feel a little safer.
I’m proud of myself for finally trying to go somewhere new. Anything new is extremely difficult for me, but I’m glad I’m not giving up.
Just to update you from yesterday’s difficulty getting my prescription filled, I did finally get the script. It took about 4 more phone calls. It’s ridiculous that I even have to call them at all. Hopefully they will figure it out for the next time.
Today I have another ECT treatment, my appointment is in two hours. Since my husband is working, I asked my mother-in-law if she could bring me. I don’t like asking others for help, but sometimes you have to. When I asked her, she responded happily, she said, “Of course, that’s what family is for.” I felt a huge relief when she said that. She really does make me feel comfortable and feel like family. I hate asking for help, but I did it and it all worked out. I’m hoping that I will one day learn that asking for help is not a bad thing.
Everyone from my family lives far away (I’m the one that moved away). Most of them live in Connecticut and Massachusetts. So living in Arizona can be lonely. I’m very lucky to have my husband’s family who all live close to us. They have taken me in as their own family. My mother-in-law bringing me to my appointment is another example of how they treat me like their own.
“You create your opportunities by asking for them.” – Patty Hansen
Standing up for yourself is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. Taking initiative is what provides possibilities in our lives. I have a hard time asking for anything, especially for help, but it is something that I’m working on.
My therapy session went okay yesterday. We talked about what I’m going to do about the weight gain from the Clozapine. I want to go off the medication, but I’m afraid that if I do it will cause some horrible episode. I need to think about both my physical and mental health. The decision is impossible. I wanted my therapist to tell me what to do, but I know he can’t do that. I want someone (that I trust) to tell me what to do. I’m leaning towards going off the medication after the new year. I’m even willing to try IV Ketamine in order to get off Clozapine. I would do almost anything to get off this medication.
The weight gain is causing me to feel bad about myself. I’m crying off and on and I have no desire to leave the house. I would rather stay home alone where no one has to see me. Why does this have to be so difficult? I hate my life. I’m too overwhelmed with everything.
I’ve been saying for a while now that I will try a new support group, but I just don’t do it. I’m too scared of new things. I miss what my old support group did for me. I met a lot of people there that I really care about and it felt great to have people understand what I was going through. I want that part of my life back.
Last week, someone from my old support group asked me if I knew of any other support groups. I did some research for him and ended up using the information for myself. It’s so much easier to do something for others than it is to do something for yourself. I’m extremely nervous, but in a couple of hours, I will be going to a new support group. My husband and I drove over there the other day to check out where is so I don’t get lost when I go today. I will post again either later today or tomorrow to let you all know how it went.
I’ve learned a lot of different lessons over the years. I thought I might share what I have learned with you one lesson at a time; hopefully you don’t have to learn these things the hard way like I did. One of the more recent lessons I’ve learned is to be open-minded. I have always wanted to do things when they were my ideas. I would listen to other people and allow them to explain why they believe I should try something their way, but then I wouldn’t act upon it. A few of these examples include writing, meditation, and doing research.
My AA sponsor used to tell me all of the time that writing would help me work through some issues. I always told her that writing wasn’t for me, even though I never spent much time trying. This went on for years. Writing was also suggested to me by others, and I continued to ignore the suggestion. Finally, my aunt told me that she thought I would be good at blogging and that I could get something out of it. She suggested that I simply look over the idea and see if it’s right for me. After a few weeks, I finally took her suggestion. I now blog every day, usually multiple times a day, and I find it to be extremely helpful. I generally can write my way through issues that I’m struggling with; by the end of a post, I have come up with a solution for the problem I started writing about. Imagine how much easier my life would have been if I had simply been more open to the idea about a decade ago.
Multiple people have suggested to me that meditation could help me. My mom, aunt, sponsor, and several others would bring up the idea of meditation. For some time, they tried to talk me into doing it, but I was against the idea. I had an experience with meditation when I first got sober, and it wasn’t a good one. I had a hard time sitting still, and I was forced to work on meditating. Personally, I don’t like to do anything I’m forced to do. I’m extremely stubborn and I would prefer choose to do an activity on my own terms than have someone else strongly suggest I try it. It has been twelve years since my negative experience with meditation and I was unwilling to let go of that until just a week ago. I finally decided, based on my aunt’s suggestion, to try guided imagery meditation to hopefully help improve my painful bladder disorder. Maybe I could have saved myself a lot of trouble if I was willing to try meditation years ago.
It has also been suggested that I do research regarding any suggestion from my doctors. Research is something that I like to do, but I generally only do it when it’s about something I’m already interested in. What I should do is research every option so I know the truth about my choices instead of just researching what I think is a good idea. There’s a lot of information available to help make decisions regarding our health. I struggle when it’s time to decide how to move forward with my physical or mental health. The research that I do is a great way to help me make educated decisions.
I have come to realize that my life could have been easier if I had been more open-minded. What I have learned from all of this is to work hard at being open-minded. The willingness to consider new options and ideas is a wonderful quality that a person can have to help make their life easier to manage. I don’t have to keep looking back at my past when I wasn’t open-minded; all I need to do now is look to the future with an open mind.
If you’re anything like I am, you blame yourself for everything that goes wrong in your life. Every time that something goes differently than I want it to, I consider it to be my fault. The truth is, it may not be anyone’s fault, but I still blame myself. This is a very hard way to live life, and it’s very exhausting as well. I also tend to apologize to others for no reason. My husband is always asking me why I keep saying ‘I’m sorry’. I don’t know what to tell him. I do my best not to apologize for that; to be honest, I don’t know where this issue comes from.
It’s not necessary to take responsibility for everything that happens in life. Some things just don’t go the way you want them to; however, I don’t know how to express my feelings to other people without telling them I’m sorry. When my husband is in pain, I tell him I’m sorry. What am I supposed to tell him? When my friend is upset, what am I supposed to tell him/her? I suppose I’m just unsure how to express my emotions. I’m open to suggestions, if anyone would like to offer any.
I’ve been told that I always tend to think of the worst case scenarios. I easily jump to the worst possible conclusion instead of the most likely conclusion. I try not to panic, but it happens so easily. I think that part of it is just the way I’m wired. I’m a worrier, it’s what I do. The other part is that I’ve experienced a lot of trauma over the years. My father died when I was 18 and shortly after that my boyfriend died. I have also lost numerous friends to drug and alcohol addiction and to mental illness. I suppose I just expect to hear bad news at this point. I would rather expect something bad to happen and end up being pleasantly surprised when it’s not true, than to expect good news and be disappointed with sad or scary news.
Maybe this is a terrible way to look at and deal with life, but it’s how I do things at this time. I don’t know how to do it any other way. I am learning to gather information before drawing a conclusion. For example, I heard that there was some type of incident in my home town where someone lost their life. That was all the information I could find. Instead of assuming that it was a friend or family member, I called someone to see what they knew. Turns out, it was not about anyone that I knew. Another example is that I become scared when someone I don’t know talks to me or comes up to me. I am terrified of anything I don’t know. I’ve been able to get better at this over time. Hopefully, I will continue to grow and be able to reduce my anxiety.