I Have Chinese Food in my Fridge

I’m trying to art today, but everything I start gets away from me. I did two line drawings but haven’t coloured anything. I had every intention of working on the Devil’s Advocate comic but I’m much too easily distracted.

So, boring blog update instead? Sure!

I have a new hoodie and I love it dearly. It’s comfortable, fits well and is both soft and warm. I’ve already spilled coffee on it, but since I spill coffee on everything — clothes, cats, my car, my boss, my desk, literally EVERYTHING — I don’t really sweat it anymore. It’s like a rite of passage for my wardrobe. Everything in my closet that isn’t coffee stained is probably roundly mocked by my multitudes of Star Trek T-shirts for obviously not being a preferred item of clothing.

I’m up to 50mg of Lamictal now and things are going pretty well. The insomnia issue has resolved itself and I’ve gotten 6-7 hours of sleep every night for the last week and a half. This is extraordinary. I’ve been an insomniac since my early teens and I can remember individual instances of having slept well vividly because they were so rare. I can function on as little as 3 hours, but I much prefer life without the fog of exhaustion and the terrible headaches.

The headaches, muscle aches, and photo-sensitivity are my most persistent side effects. Word recall and (ironically, I’ve actually been sitting at this point for 3 minutes now trying to find the word I want to write here :/) short term memory are still a struggle, though it’s less annoying then I thought it would be. This will probably change when I try to kick start my writing again, but for now I’m not as bothered as I expected. I’m intermittently dizzy, but without vertigo. The itchy/prickly feeling I’ve gotten has subsided again, and I suspect it will happen with every dosage change, but it hasn’t progressed beyond annoying.

The change in my moods, however, has been extraordinary and totally worth the random dumbs and loopys. I knew that I was pretty depressed going into treatment, but since I wasn’t as depressed as I have been in the past, I was mostly ignoring it. It’s amazing what you can get used to. I’ve learned this lesson in a lot of uncomfortable ways over the years and it’s so refreshing to be getting used to something like feeling good. I haven’t had a suicidal thought in weeks and while I have been stressed out, irritable and anxious a couple of times since I started treatment, it’s never felt like too much for me to bear.

I have an appointment with my doctor on Tuesday to discuss my progress and an appointment with the new shrink the following Thursday. I really hope that the progress I’m showing will be enough to get my ADHD meds back, though I doubt I qualify as stable yet. I want to feel good AND be able to focus for more than ten minutes at a time, dammit. Another month, at least, until I hit the therapeutic dose of Lamictal. I waited 31 years to get my first Concerta script, I should be able to cope with another month.

I’ve been going to massage therapy every two weeks to deal with my garbage neck, back and knee. My massage therapist is awesome and I would gay marry her in heartbeat, even though I feel like she kicked my ass for a couple of days after every appointment. She worked on my neck and shoulders today and I could actually feel the knots give way under her thumbs. I’m hoping this will help with muscle aches and the headaches (and get me loose enough that I can start yoga without hurting myself. My knee in particular concerns me there since it doesn’t always want to support my weight).

I finished reading An Unquiet Mind. Overall, I’m not a huge fan of Kay Jamison’s writing style, it tends to veer a little too purple for my taste. She did present a pretty clear picture of the highs and lows of her illness but while I could see some similar trends in myself, I also found her difficult to relate to in a lot of areas because of the differences in our upbringings and tax brackets. Familial support is also something I won’t be able to rely on going forward, so I get kind of twitchy and rebellious when it’s presented as the most important aspect to recovery. Like, “Fuck you, man. I’m going to be fine without it and you suck for implying otherwise. Also, stop trying to pity me.”

Whatever works, yeah?


About braineatsbrain

Recently diagnosed with bipolar. Twice. This is where I'm going to try to make sense of that. Expect introspection, unfocused anger, and random art.
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2 Responses to I Have Chinese Food in my Fridge

  1. Yay, sleep! I’m so so so glad you’re feeling better. And I hope that the dumb/loopy does settle down for you to a dull “wait, let me write that down” kind of thing like it has for me– I know my meds are working because I can write. It’s when I can’t that I know I’m too depressed again, if that makes any sense.

    Sorry that Jamison struck some wrong notes with you. It’s been a long time since I’ve reread that particular book of hers cover to cover– there are parts of it that I underlined when I first read it and that’s what I go back to when I need it, but maybe it’s time I reread it before I push it on someone again. My overarching takeaway from the book, and the thing that’s stayed with me, was the self-recognition in the depression and then the angry parts of her mania and thinking “yesyesyesyesthisisit, I’m not alone”– I don’t know if the class differences or what you registered about family support, money or otherwise, even registered with me. If it did, I probably thought “meh, I’m not getting shit from my parents, I’m not even going to bother to ask,” and didn’t dig any deeper than that, mostly because I was focused, at that point, on keeping my job (a real issue) and helping my husband figure out what the hell was going on in my head.

    Because that worked out so well. : )

    Massage is a great idea. *Scampers off to search Groupon.*

    • It wasn’t anything all that glaring. I sooooper sensitive to family issues, for reasons ;) and I pick up on those underlying assumptions in narratives really easily because of it. I picked up on it mostly when she was talking about her brother and her husband, and I got the impression that the stable “home base” was a critical element in her recovery. It’s not really good or bad, in and of itself, just foreign to me. And I resent the implication that I’m somehow less because I’m estranged from my family. (Which is more to do with projection than Jamison’s actual text, I’ll own that. More of a general pet peeve than an actual critique, but definitely one that I get more and more frustrated with every year. Especially around Christmas.) The class thing was less in what was said (although I think sabbaticals to Europe are a bit outside the means of most people) than what wasn’t (the cost of her daily psychiatrist appointments when she was really low, for example). I’m really happy that she’s doing so well, but I think if I lived in the States and was reading this somewhat breezy account of a debilitating illness by a woman whose successes in coping could be said to hinge on resources that would never be within my reach, it’d probably make me pretty angry. And hopeless. I liked Marbles a lot better because it acknowledged there was a cost associated with the illness, and hearing from her that it was worth the sacrifices t get treatment meant more than hearing it from Jamison, if that makes any sense at all.

      There were definitely valuable things in the book (CHAMPAGNE MANIA) and I like your highlighting system for easy returning to those specific parts. But reading her descriptions of romantic love and coy references to sex, sorry *cough* lovemaking, just isn’t for me. I’d rather not have to do that again ;)

      <3 Good luck with Groupon (OMG, finally someone else who understands the glory of Groupon! LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT THE AWESOME DEAL I GOT ON SHEETS ;) )

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