Rock Or Marshmallow?

I’m meeting Amanda’s ex husband on Sunday. Why you ask? Because he doesn’t trust Amanda’s judgement about what a “good guy” is, and wants to vet me before trusting me around his son. I don’t blame him for this concern, because in and of itself, it’s legitimate. But to base this encounter on a lack of trust is not a good motivation to meet someone. This is not about curiosity, it’s a security concern, one that I must both adhere to and comprehend fully. I’m thinking that this may not be a very friendly meeting. I’m also hoping to reveal zero percent of my flamboyant, emotional self, as this would be interpreted as general weakness. Apparently, Jesse is a robot; both callous and cold. I can say that I have been those things at certain times of my life, but never as a trait. So I have raised shields to maximum and armed the photon torpedoes. I’m prepared for whatever he asks, and I don’t intend to mislead or otherwise lie. Not at all. I just only want him to see some of me. Not all. I intend to put his fears to rest. Hopefully. But this whole encounter has me thinking lots of anxious thoughts. Nothing I can’t handle, but I feel the wheels turning about this. So wish me luck.

As Things Get Better…

Score: +2.5

Things in my life are coming together, and I’m really excited about where I am headed. I have been assertively vigilant about my mental health, and that has paid dividends in stability. I have nourished my social self, which has culminated in a rewarding relationship with a wonderful woman. I have excelled at work, getting a bounty of opportunities to strive and succeed. Things are improving as time goes on, and I apply myself fully to my life.

As things get better, I will find less cause to come here and express my inner-dialogue. Why? Because it’s the negativity that I am trying to get out if my head, and when I have very few problematic thoughts, I find fewer reasons to rant. Trust me, I will still be using this place as a tool for reflecting introspectively, but there won’t be a post a day like there had been.

I have been diligently keeping score, even if I am not posting. I have 16 days worth of entries so far, at an average of 2.7. I’m on the low-end of the good range, for sure. I’m only slightly concerned about my energy, as that has been a little low of late. But I’m really, truly, doing wonderfully. Im happy all the way through me. My body, however, may enter full revolt soon. I have been repeatedly exposed to viruses and believe I may have contracted one. I’m not sure though. I was able to chase off a vile headache this morning with 250mg of Naproxen, but I’m waiting for the hammer. I have been pounding the vitamin c, so here’s hoping it works!

Have a great day blog. Things are at a new unprecedented level. I’m so satisfied with my life. I’m falling in love with an amazing person, and I’m healthier than I have been in years. I think this is the path I was meant to walk; I am executing a philosophy of self care, and it is rewarding me greatly. Thank you for being here through all the crazy ups and downs, your feedback is greatly appreciated.


Score: +2

As the week goes on, I find myself in a stasis between functional and exhausted. I have a 6 day work week, culminating in a 6:00 am to 2:30 pm shift on Saturday. Things have slowed down to historic lows at my job, to the point of wondering why there are as many of us as there are on staff. I mean, I understand the caution in always wanting enough people to handle the influx of potential issues, but our staff seems bloated. We could stand to lose 3-4 people and still be in great shape. Plus, if we cut the weakest ones, then the extra work they were making via their mistakes will also go away, leaving more time for the rest of us to do our jobs.

Today Jojo, a seasoned veteran of the DTOC, came to my desk and asked me a question that he could have asked a manager, but he chose me instead. And I didn’t know the answer, but I went and found out what it was and told him. I was shocked. Why should I need to field a question form Jojo? He should know 7 times as many things as I do. But either way, it felt amazing to be needed, and to provide an answer.

Today is night 3 of my consecutive trips to my parent’s RV. My sister is coming over for dinner too. It’s one of the last few nights we will all have together before they hit the road for Florida and the keys. They will have quite an adventure and I am glad for them. But they will be out of the equation for a long time, and I will have to do without them for months. This makes me a tiny bit sad, but more happy for what fun they will have.

Well shit. It’s time I got back to work. See you later.

One Day

Score: +1

I was in a rut right from the start. I felt down, like the wind had been taken out of my sails. I went to work and did my job admirably, but it was much harder than normal to maintain my composure. Songs would play on the overhead speakers and I would nearly lose my shit. I wanted to cry when “I Will Wait” by Mumford & Sons came on.

This is the result of an imbalance in my brain, which sometimes, cannot be avoided. Occasionally symptoms just happen, given no rhyme or reason. I had a fantastic weekend, and a productive day at work, and I was blue all the while. These things last for a day, but only rarely do they repeat themselves or merit extra attention. A blip on the radar of time, nothing more.

Despite the score, I am at a good, healthy average of 2.79 on the scale which is in the “Goldilocks zone” between 2 and 5 (an area I most desire to stay in because it represents unprecedented stability and also happiness).

Between 1 and -1 there is a significant loss of abundant energy. Things have recoiled to a minimal level, and are operating on low power standby. If that makes any sense.

Between -2 and -5 any number of bad events can cause a decline to this point. It is only problematic if it represents an ongoing trend.

And the polar ends of the scale account for accentuated episodes of extreme emotions, often culminating moments (between +/- 6 and +/- 10). So we need not overly worry ourselves over one shitty day. Bad times are usually prolonged, so as long as we can avoid that, I think things are going to be just fine.


02/20/15 – Score: +2
02/21/15 – Score: +3.5
02/22/15 – Score: +3

The last three days have been crazy. Friday I was busy all day on the phones. I made more outgoing calls than I took out of the queue by a 2:1 ratio. My brain was a mashed cantaloupe by the end of the day.

Friday night I went and picked up Amanda and we drove over to my parent’s RV and I formally introduced her to them. It went great. We all sat around and joked and passed the pipe. I picked up some food that I was to keep safe in my fridge and Amanda and I came back to my apartment to spend the night. We talked, played Katamari Damacy and held hands on my futon. I’m adjusting to having someone new who I can touch and feel… all theses areas in me have been laying dormant for a while until now. And I feel a shift has occurred: I don’t pine for sex the same way I used to with other partners. I think it’s because Amanda is willing to be open and emotional with me, and I feel connected to her in a way that supersedes the intimacy of physicality. Don’t get me wrong though blog, the sex is wonderful, but it’s not the primary way I’m bonding to her.

Saturday was the day of my dad’s 60th birthday party, and many things needed to be done. My truck was a huge part of the plan. I packed it full to the brim in La Mesa with goods and supplies, then drove everything into mission valley off Qualcomm way where the venue for the party was located. The place was a property managed by Oakwood, and the only reason we got to hold our big party there was because Tina (my mom’s brother’s wife) hooked it up for is for free. It was a giant room, with a pool table, three bar areas for sitting, a living room with couches and three TVs, a big kitchen and a theatre. Yes, a theatre, with maybe 20 recliners in four tiered rows and a digital projector mounted to the ceiling. Nice. Anyway, I carried all the supplies, food, drinks and decorations down there and unloaded it all into the room. But I could not stay there and help set it up, because I had two loads of laundry to do and that was likely to take the better part of 3 hours to complete. If I didn’t do it then, I was not going to have clean clothes for the week. So Amanda and I hung out at my place and had a nice afternoon together. Then we hopped right back in the truck and went to the party two hours early to help. Once things got going it was all in autopilot. The party went great. I did tech support and got a slide show going on the theatre room projector. Then people started showing up.

Now, I was aware that the dress code was “cocktail party” but had thought about this earlier in the day. Was I really going to dress up and then work my ass off all evening with the cleaning in my slick digs? I thought of myself struggling to keep my sleeves rolled up while I got water and food all over my button up shirt and slacks. It was a bad idea to clean up after a 30 person party in my best outfit. So I did not dress up, I wore my working clothes. I do somewhat regret doing this. But I also knew what had to be done. No one else was going to wash the dishes but me. No one else was going to pack up dinner and move shit back into my truck. I didn’t mind not being dressed up because I was working, and being an effective worker is more important than looking temporarily sharp.

Amanda came to the rescue and helped me in my effort to clean and pack nearly everything before the party died down. People started leaving, and Amanda and I must have made 15 trips from the room to the truck carrying things. My dad helped towards the end because he could see us busting ass to clean up and I think he wanted to feel useful. But it was HIS party. He should have just relaxed.

After the truck was (again) stuffed to the brim with things, we headed back to my apartment and unloaded the perishable food and coolers back into my kitchen. We faded out rapidly into blissful sleep.

Sunday was the day that I was supposed to go paintballing, but as morning arrived, I realized that my plan was doomed. I still had my whole truck jammed with stuff from the party, and no where to put it. I couldn’t unload it into my apartment. Doing so would then obligate me to pack it back up again when I was done with paintball, THEN drive it somewhere to be unpacked. I took Amanda home first and was headed out to rural Lakeside where the course was located, but I stopped less than half way: I aborted paintball, as I realized the commitment I made to help my family with my dad’s party sill required my attention.

I spun a lie to my coworkers about why I could not go, and I don’t care to disclose the truth to them about the reality of my priorities. My life, and its intricate workings, are not knowledge I want them to have. So to them, my alternator died, and I went to have it fixed for $380. Done. I was already in El Cajon, so I went by storage and pulled the last of the polished rocks out of the tumbler. I bagged those up, went home and loaded both coolers back into my truck and any additional boxes that needed moving. I took everything to my parents RV, and there we sifted through it to remove anything that was going to stay with my parents. My sister and I drove separately to the storage unit (again), where I unpacked the last of the things from the party, and loaded a big rug and an inflatable bed into the jeep for my sister to take with her to my cousin’s house. It was only at this point did I stop working for the party. I went home again, but quickly went back down the street and bought all the groceries I would need for the week ahead. I made lunch and did some of the final chores at my apartment. At around 3:45 I took off for Amanda’s house to help her do her housework that she was behind on (having spent almost no time at home because she was with me). I got there to find her unconventional friend Kasey there with her developmentally delayed son doing their laundry at Amanda’s expense and using her hot water to clean Kasey’s son Gavyn. He’s 3, and can’t speak any words yet, and he is sill wearing a diaper because he is not potty trained. He cries and freaks out a lot, and rolls around on the ground squealing and flapping his arms when things don’t go his way. His mom is a meth addict who’s primary occupations are prostitution and stripping. I don’t know what kind of mom she is. I mean, from what I can see she does care and love her son, but I don’t know enough to pass judgement. I just see things from the outside and begin to wonder. But anyway, while Kasey was there I helped Amanda clean every single dish in her sink, then hauled all the trash down to the dumpsters, then folded all her clean clothes and Tristan’s clothes and put them away. By the time 6:15 rolled around Kasey was gone and Amanda and I ordered a sushi feast and brought it back to her apartment. A wonderful way to spend an evening… in her company.

Blog, this has been quite a weekend as you can see. I have been busy the whole way through. I know ur was wrong of me to lie about not being able to go to paintball, but I value my privacy tremendously at work, and don’t ever want to let anyone in on how the priorities of my life are arranged. I don’t want them to be in on it. So I tell lies to protect myself.

I’ve had an eventful weekend. I hope yours was good as well. I feel strongly about Amanda, and I am so impressed how she handled a difficult situation. She rose to the occasion, and I am so thankful for her help. She made things go a lot easier, and worked until she was injured. I’m glad she’s on my team. That’s for sure.

Let Me Explain

Score: +2.5

I will admit to having had a slower than usual day today. Mentally, I mean. I woke up way too late this morning and have been a bit sluggish; plodding through the marsh like a Diplodocus. But it has been a good shift; I have been productive and have also solved problems right and left. I even had a chance to train someone from the repair department on how we do things in customer support. That was fun, to have someone to teach, because I’m a superb instructor.

Overall things have been great. My mental health is at an all-time high of stability and functionality. I am working hard to make sure my brain operates normally. My relationship with Amanda is progressing naturally and has already offered me a great deal of happiness. Blog, my life is fairly simple: I work, a rest, I smoke a bowl once every 3-5 days or so for kicks. I don’t need much to keep me entertained and I’m much easier to please than your average mook. I don’t yearn for a complex and advanced life; I have enough to worry about trying to balance my own meager set of affairs. Why overload myself with stimuli when very little is plenty to keep me happy?

You know what really drives me on? The promise of living a stable and honorable life. I don’t want fame, or power, and I generally don’t care about money. My upside down life has been an inwardly spiraling journey with the intent of balance but the reality of destruction.

I have always thought that a relationship was the thing I needed to be happy, but that has proven to be folly. I NEEDED a relationship to feel complete, and that’s right where it all went wrong. I NEEDED sex because it was something that felt good and was the only intimacy I understood. I have destroyed every relationship I’ve been in because I was not a whole person; I had gaping chasms that I was expecting love to fill.

I look back on that and regret, but it was a lesson I had to learn the hard way (through failure). I reflect, because at this moment, I am doing something totally new and departing from my relationship patterns of the past. I decided to fix myself first, before going looking for love again. I spent months rehashing pain, going to groups, getting my medications dialed in, and talking through my issues with an astute therapist. It took many consecutive days of that single-minded activity to accomplish a change. And the result is unprecedented security of self. I feel more aware and proud of who I am, and who I have become than EVER before.

I am falling in love again blog. It is a slower process than previously attempted, and I’m savoring the journey to being in love. I know that I am going in that direction, but the haste to arrive at commitment is gone, replaced by a cool patience and thoughtful comprehension. I really want to know who she is before I give her my heart. But I think I will give it to her, because that is what I want to do. I’m still very scared that I will be hurt again, but the root of that feeling is the trauma of abandonment. To be given up on several times by people you had completely pledged to is brutally painful. And I did this to myself by not being a complete “me” before deciding to be in a relationship. I have thought it out, and I know myself better now than I have in years. Years blog.

So this is a good time in my life. Things are changing; my caring for Amanda runs strong and deep. Apprehensive? A little. But I think it’s reasonable considering my history. But I do want her. I want her to be my only one, the keeper of my secrets, the guardian of my heart. I think I will get there with her, in time. All good things…

Waves – Blondfire

You hear them when you try to fall asleep,
They crash to the shore, they come from the deep.
As sure as a sun will rise a sun will set,
You taste the salt, the closer you get.

Picking you up, pushing you down.
Just like a dream, silver and green, we live in between.
They can carry you all the way to me, they can pull you out to the deep blue sea, oh waves,
There are waves.

Empires will crumble to the sand,
All that you love, can slip through your hand,
But you must face the ocean once again,
Follow the tides, wherever you’ve been.

Picking you up, pushing you down.
Just like a dream, silver and green, we live in between.
They can carry you all the way to me, they can pull you out to the deep blue sea, oh waves,
There are waves.

The Enemy Within

Score: +3

I feel like looking back at my past tonight. I had an opportunity to reflect on my progression as a person over the last (nearly) year. Some radical things have happened to me: I went from a being driven inward by self hate to a person who genuinely respects who he is. I went from having $0 in the bank to fully self-sufficient financially. I have emerged from a negative pattern and hopped the rails to a new, promising destination. It took a total psychological breakdown to achieve this change, mind you, and reaching rock bottom if there ever was such a thing. I regret hating myself the way I did. It made me a vicious and frustrated person, who largely resented the world. I look back on who I was then and I can understand why I was there and because of destructive circumstances.

I have something I’d like to tell you about what it’s like to really, truly, hate yourself: I have mutilated my body, on more than 10 occasions, creating gaping wounds in my flesh that take weeks to heal. I used to remove cysts with a pair of toenail clippers, slowly tearing away the flesh around them until they could be extracted. The clippers are a deadly digging tool. You wouldn’t think it, looking at them, but a great deal of pressure can be applied to their blades, and evenly. I would throw whole rolls of toilet paper soaked in my own blood away, flushing them down into secrecy. I would leave no trace of my crime, but for the bandaid or gauss patch covering the wound. Sometimes, I would chew and destroy all the tender inner wall of my lower lip. I would rip segments of it away by pinching them with two sharp teeth, then ripping chunks off by peeling them free. I had open, bleeding wounds in my mouth, for days or weeks, on multiple occasions.

I really didn’t have the ability to inhibit myself. I can’t remember ever thinking “hey, maybe I should stop this because now I’m injured.” I just got out of control. I did it until I felt like whatever thing I had originally set out to remove from underneath my skin was gone. I have done this to my own face… scarred myself, permanently. I guess I just lost inhibition because I didn’t care about the consequences of hurting my body. It was irrelevant. It didn’t matter, because I didn’t care.

That level of destructive thinking will eventually drive you to contemplate larger forms of self injury, and the bridge to accepting suicide as an option gets more real. It becomes plausible that if you are freely willing to maim yourself for weeks at a time, then slitting your own wrist wouldn’t actually be that difficult. And it would be over in a few minutes.

I encountered the end of this line of thinking. It concludes in an attempt at self destruction. I was at that point, about a year ago. I had annihilated my life. At some point, I came to realize that I would have to learn how to respect myself, and make my mental health the top priority of my life from now on, if ever anything was to change. Hating myself goes nowhere. Believing in myself could lead me just about anywhere.

And I would have to defeat (the negative thinking, not the symptoms) depression with facts; proofs that I was worth something. That even in light of my transgressions, that I should still find cause to hope. I am a human being and nothing is going to change what I have done; I can only decide what to do next. And with each day, I try to take a step to establish self love and pride in the man I am becoming. I don’t need to blather on about my success, it’s evident by the volume of content here at Neurochemically Challenged.

I wanted you to know how I have changed. I don’t hurt myself anymore, at all. I even use my toenail clippers for the purpose they are intended for. I faced my demons and they were the ones who backed down. There is no temptation to return to a negative pattern. I have moved to a new understanding of how to think about myself. And for the better. Clearly.


Score: +4.5

It has been a memorable Monday indeed blog. I took a day off work, and got to know my girlfriend Amanda better. I feel like, if I am ever going to find a long term partner, I must be able to both understand and trust her fully. I have failed in past attempts because I did not take the time to comprehend who they were as people before falling in love. I gave them all my trust, and my heart, but I did so on a whim. I have learned an important lesson from those experiences, and I am doing things differently this time… as hard as that can be at times.

Blog, I must be perfectly honest with you: she makes me feel incredible. I know now that I am falling in love with her, slowly and steadily, as I uncover more of who she is. I’m not in love yet, but if things continue going this way, I will be.

After Jax, I felt condemned, and that I would not desire to go looking for love again because the consequences of having my heart broken were still so near (and painful). I was also punishing myself, because I felt like I did not deserve to love anyone again after the mistakes I had made in previous relationships. In early March, it will have been a year since Jax and I were through. The divorce did not go final until November, and so the reality of my time as a legal bachelor is a mere 75 days. But this does not take into account all the time from March 10th onward, where I was physically alone, but more importantly, rebuilding. That stretch from then until meeting Amanda was 320 days long, which is still 45 days shy of a year.

Blog, I know that I’m still establishing my life right now, and that there are things about myself that I do not fully comprehend, but what I can tell you is that being alone is not sad. Loneliness is inherently exclusive, and strands the social mind on an island with one palm tree on it. There is a choice, because companionship is risky, but can be very rewarding if the proper steps are taken to ensure a successful outcome. Information is the currency in which trust is traded. And from that transaction does respect accrue. But these things do not happen in a flash (I am learning), they build up, brick by brick, until something formidable has been constructed. A bastion that is hard to obliterate because it was so meticulously assembled. Part of my regret comes from giving away all my trust to someone who would eventually knock my tower down and set fire to the rubble. The thing I had tried to build was not valuable then, but I know that is changing now.

Today Amanda looked at me with those beautiful eyes and told me the secrets that were her feelings. She held my arm and nuzzled me, kissed me, held my hand, and connected with me in all ways that two people exploring each other can. I feel more bonded to her than ever before. We do lead busy, independent lives, but in these sacred pauses to the routine, we accelerate the process by which we come to better understand each other. Today was a day filled with hope and promise. There is still plenty of work to be done, but it is gladly and enthusiastically undertaken. She has been ridiculed and treated dishonorably in the past, and I don’t see how anyone who gets to know her could have done that. There’s a new sheriff in town (needless to say).

It has been an exceptional day, taking my spirits to new unanticipated heights. I realize if only really technically been on the market for a short time (relatively), but I have examined myself thoroughly in that time and have drawn up many diagrams and made several key changes. Now that I am discovering love again, I feel more ready to go through it than I ever have before. I’ve never given my feelings the level of scrutiny and analysis that I am now. Never. I have trusted quickly and acted impulsively. These patterns are not repeating themselves with Amanda.

We have known each other for 33 days, and this journey is just starting. I am intent on walking a path towards commitment. When we get there is another matter entirely. The slower, steadier, and smoother, the better.

Goodnight blog. The scent of her hangs on me like a delicate robe, and so she guides me to rest.


Score: +2.5

I’m pretty slow today. I’m at work, from 6 am until 3 pm. I have slammed the caffeinated beverages to stay ahead of the drowsiness, but as the end of the day approaches, I can feel the effects wearing off. My spirits age good though. I have had a relatively busy day at work, I’m at 27 right now as I write this, and I’m sure to pick up a few more as the last hour of my shift approaches. I have booked a lot of tech dispatches today, which I find is the norm in the weekends, because there are only three guys handling incoming calls. Our numbers today are pathetic. We have terrible customer service on Sunday. And they couldn’t even pay the third guy for the whole day. Stupid. I guess they must not care that it takes us 15 minutes to get the the next call, because only two guys can’t handle any volume of calls whatsoever.

I’m concerned about my future at Mood. If they are scaling back overtime hours, will they also be scaling back the number of employees? Sometimes it seems like we just have way too many people, while at other times we are slammed and everyone is busy doing something. I am trying to distinguish myself as someone they would never consider firing, even if they were forced to cut back. I’m taking on as much new responsibility as I can manage, without jeopardizing my health.

But life in general is going really good. I’m happy, occupied, curious and optimistic about things. I’m spending the whole day with Amanda tomorrow and I am really looking forward to that. I’m cooking dinner for us. Bbq chicken, green salad. Yorf.

Breathing Through Leaves

Her provocative smile–
The dandelion whisper of words,
Touching checks gracefully,
Rendering their feathered kisses,
Coasting on air filled with reasons.

The bloom of a flower,
Sing of honey lips,
A splash of cool rainwater,
Deep and empowered by eyes,
Fresh fragrances beguile,
The dry softness of her hair.
Tapped deep in the earth,
Her ground is truth.

All about are the footprints of thought,
Ever-reaching for fragments,
Bound to the chase in learning,
Down like a west sun over the sea,
Eternal as the fire at midnight,
Her mysteries unfolding–
Patiently the petals extend,
Gather up the promise of tomorrow.

Let it be pure–
The fresh sod of understanding,
Take hold and drink.
A time has come for the day.

Caught Up

Score: +3.5

Breakfast started off with a laugh. I see Amanda just pull into the parking lot at the Lake Murray Cafe, and I had a look and saw it was totally full. So we both just drove two blocks down into a residential area and parked right behind each other. I gave her some flowers in a vase for Valentine’s Day, and she liked them. Then we had a fulfilling breakfast and went to the park together. We turned Tristan loose on the playground and sat there on the bench taking in the day. And it was unreasonably hot. Poor Tristan started to turn red and looked pretty flushed by the time we were headed back. I got to hold his hand and lift him up with my right arm. That was a fun game.

I have, since the outing, have dismantled both rock tumblers and put the new drive and idler shafts back on the frames. Both tumblers are working normally at this time. The next thing I will need to do will be to get the unfinished gemstones from Moo and add the grit and ceramic pellets in the new barrel we bought. Then that guy is probably gonna go for a week. That should be about the time of Daddo’s birthday party, which is probably going to be fun. And then the next day I’m out paintballing with the dudes, and a couple of chicks. Eventful. Needless to say.

I’m doing great. Things in my world are moving right along. I’m taking my work ethic to new heights, and striving to be the best me I know how to be. I’m getting to discover a rare and amazing person in Amanda, and I’m having a good time doing so. There’s no rush to get anywhere. We are learning each other in a measured and sensible way. The journey we are on is a promising one, and I look forward to seeing where it goes.

It’s nearing the end of the day. I have an early start tomorrow as my shift starts at 6 but I need to be up and at ’em by 5. I will probably go to bed early. So, all in all a good day off, with lots of fun stuff going on.

Onward, Upward

Score: +3

It’s Friday, and I am going to have lots of fun on my day off. I’m having breakfast with Amanda and then she, Tristan and I are all going to the park together. I miss her. These long weeks where we are relegated to just texting are tough. But it’s the best we can do, given the situation. And I am still grateful to have some contact, as opposed to none. Things in my life are looking up. Work has been consistent and rewarding. My mental health has been good, and continuing to show signs of strength and stability. I have no complaints at this time.

I’m going to see my parents tonight at their RV. I like going over there when they are actually here in town. Soon they will be far away, and I will not have the opportunity to spend time with them.

All things considered, I’m doing well. I continue to improve in areas that I need to, and am cautiously minding my steps into the future. I realize that it could all change in a moment, that one mistake in my personal life could dramatically change the landscape. I can’t afford to be hasty when so much is depending on me and my stability. That’s really why I appreciate Amanda: she is helping me find the right speed for our relationship. I’ve rushed into things before and ruined them. I will not let that happen this time.

So I know today is not officially over, but I’m thinking my score would only go up from here if measured later when I’m stoned.

Have a good afternoon/night.

**UPDATED 10:00 pm **

Hello. I hear the sound of wind blowing through trees, and rustling leaves. The crisp hot of the desert starves the air of all moisture.

We live in such a strange climate. Most of the rest of the northern hemisphere is going through a real winter. We have had two rainstorms with measurable quantities, and a bit of drizzle. Which accumulates. It takes a big fucker to get all the way down to 32.7 degrees from the equator and still have enough left in it to give us some rain. The desert southwest indeed. I’m not complaining, mind you. Look at me nattering in about meteorology.

I’m alone in my apartment about to call it a night. I’m having a fun adventure day tomorrow. But then I must work 6:00 am to 3:00 pm Sunday. It’s my dad’s birthday tomorrow! He’s turning 60. Big time numbers. I hope to live as long and longer. I project the end of my usefulness come mid 80s because my body will be on the verge of total failure. Cellular decay can’t be avoided, only comprehended. I know that’s kinda crazy talk coming from a guy who tried to kill himself. But seriously though, I do feel that I want to live a long life, and surround myself with people I love. I want to spend years making happy memories, building trust and friendship with others. I want to go on seeing amazing things with my eyes, touching bodies with someone I love, feeling the warm desert air. I’ve tried to throw it all away, and I think I have learned something from my experiences. I am a different man now than I have been recently. I’ve taken on a ton of new responsibility in all aspects of my life and I’m doing great. A +3 is a respectable score. It says: I was content, but not overly so, and my energy level was still pretty good by the end of the day. I have been (recorded) low as a -8 and as high as a +7 in all my various permutations of this experiment. The -8 occurred with Jennifer, my first wife, during the fight where I hid in the bathroom and gave her back my wedding ring through the crack under the door. I was done, but unwilling to let go. The +7 occurred much earlier on in that first marriage, when I was taking meds for my ADD that were accelerating me to dangerous highs. That was just before the same doctor put me on seroquil which zombafied me and ended up sending me to the hospital for the first time. Crazy shit.

Keeping Busy

Score: +2

Today there were quite a few people just standing around doing nothing and talking to each other about this or that. Meanwhile, there were 15 – 25 open help tickets in Kana that no one was working. Except me. I hammered out 6 of them, with another 7 assigned to me while I wait for progress to be made before closing out the issue. All these freeloaders have access to Kana, they just don’t do anything with it. They would prefer to socialize and make jokes all day. I could argue against myself and say that when they get a call, they take it and, hopefully, get the issue resolved. But I don’t even know if I can stand by that claim. Chap is SO BAD on the phones it hurts. It physically makes me cringe when I hear him on a call. He gets hung up on a lot, because people just get tired of trying to get anything done with him. It’s sad, and doesn’t help our public image.

To the point: there was a drought of calls, and instead of waiting around for my turn to take an incoming problem, I worked as many Kana tickets as I could and the day zoomed by while I kept myself busy. I don’t know if anyone is taking notice. I don’t think I care whether they are or not; I’m doing this for me. I can’t abide boredom, and especially in the face of having actual things to do, if not indirectly. I have to make an effort to assign the ticket to myself and dial out to the store with the issue. I must also have the skills to address the problem and present a resolution. I was trained to do all of that, and so were twelve others. But I’m the only one being proactive and getting shit done instead of standing around talking. Albeit, it’s way easier to do nothing, but it’s not rewarding. For me, this is a matter of pride: I seek meaning to my life by doing things to promote a healthy mental state. Part of my difficulties in the past stemmed from self-hatred. I truly despised the person I was. I had no respect for him, only disdain. So in light of that very recent state of mind, I have endeavored to build myself back up by doing real things that provide me with a sense of worth. No matter the context, I am actively trying to build a positive self image, one that I love and believe in. Working hard has provided me with a great deal of benefit in this regard.

Today was all about doing things and not being asked to do them. Everyone else walked past chance, and I took it. Don’t I have to? I mean, how can I feel good about myself if I know I vacated responsibility just to socialize all day long? There would be no reward in the moment, and only regret thereafter.

I’m done ranting. It’s been a busy day. I felt good this morning. Rested. Unlike yesterday where I felt oppressively tired. Tomorrow is Friday. Saturday I have breakfast with Amanda and Tristan again, then we are going to the park. The rocks come out of the barrels, and there is also some repair work to do on the tumblers. I have already bought the replacement components. I have chores I need to do Saturday as well, because I work Sunday. I requested Monday off, and I will be spending that day with Amanda. She has the holiday, and I saw that as a great opportunity to spend some quality time with her. My feelings continue to grow, and I’m doing the best I can not to repeat my past with the haste of emotional newness. Things are happening. I have always gone rushing into love, and that way of doing things has had rather disappointing results. So I’m exercising patience in my relationship with Amanda, and I will let someone other than my heart be in the driver’s seat.

Have a good night blog. First score published today. One of many to come.

Ultimate Apocalypse – The Hunt Begins

The February news is out, and the word is encouraging. It looks like they are trying to have it ready before the end of the month, which would be sick. We are hoping to receive a fully polished skirmish mode, with an advanced AI capable of multiple strategies and build orders. And not to mention all the new shiny content they are giving us. I’m really excited. The Hunt Begins has been in development for a long time, and has now arrived at the end of the road. Soon we will all have command of the deadly Chaos Daemons and the mighty Inquisition Daemonhunters, and my favorite factions will all have been reworked and had new units added to them. Right on. They have no changelog yet, but I imagine it would be immense when compared to the last release.

I have been waiting patiently for one of my three mods to emerge, and so far, UA is taking the reigns. Edain has a public release planned for the the first quarter 2015, but there’s still a month and a half of that left. The Improvement Mod is currently broken as the modder scrambles to get the wild animals bug fixed. Right now, shrines don’t attract herds, which basically makes the Japanese useless. But I haven’t felt like I wanted to play AOE 3 lately. I’ve been thinking THB would be my first chance to try out a new mod, and now that looks to be the case. The mod team has said there will be some waiting to do yet, but SOON.

The Scale

I will (starting tomorrow) be leading off every post I wrote with a numerical score on a scale between +/- 10. The scale will rate mood, energy and symptoms all in one concise integer, that I will track on a graph over time to see if it fluctuates. I will be keeping a file where I will track and update when possible.

The more introspection the better.


I had Tuesday off, as we are going through the process of scaling back overtime at work. The bosses want to eliminate as many overtime hours as possible, and the only way to do that is to have people who work the weekends take a day off (unpaid) and get down to 40 hours. So that’s why I had a random weekday to rest; I’m taking one for the team, who’s long-term viability I care about more than 1 fat paycheck. I stayed up late Tuesday night and that was a mistake. I was not ready to wake up when my alarm went off Wednesday morning, and I was slow and boring at therapy. I didn’t have much to say, other than that I am being careful with my feelings, and generally doing well. I am succeeding at work and achieving balance in my personal life. My feelings for Amanda continue to grow, as I become more familiar with who she is. I have horrible Jax nightmares sometimes, more so lately. I think that my mind is still processing all the frayed ends of my feelings on her, while instigating new growth into a sensitive area. I know that what I’m doing now I do with both understanding and gladness. Dreams are more mysterious and subversive, and their ultimate goal is just to recycle memories. I can’t take anything there too seriously, but it is distressing to awake to sobs of sadness, as I have done.

And now for a check in:

On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 = serious problem, 10 = not a problem), rate the following:

Emotional Health: 9

Physical Depression Symptoms: 8

Physical Anxiety Symptoms: 10

Racing Thoughts: 9

Depressed Thoughts: 10

Self-Esteem: 9

Concentration: 7

Enthusiasm: 9

Charisma: 10

Motivation: 7

Paranoia / Fear / Anxiety: 9

Outlook / Hope: 9


I’d say my grogginess and slowness of thought have bothered me some. I can normally function at a higher level, but lately it’s been rougher. My energy is low. My depressed thoughts are affecting my sleep. I’m having a harder time sorting through the muck. Coffee addresses nothing regardless of quantity. I’m sure that this is a temporary slump that will correct itself in time. For now, I just plan to get some extra sleep.

No Nickname

I’m a gibberish person. Sometimes the oddest memory is the one thing I remember clearest, that stands the test of time. I can point to things and utter something that is not entirely english, or have just the word you were looking for. It’s an odd bridge between complete insanity, and clairvoyance. Anyway, everyone has a nickname, because they all have a random memory associated with them that has transcended the ages. My sister Jennifer was christened “JaGnAr” many years ago as the result of not typing her name very good in an email or something. The name has to have every other letter capitalized as well. My mom is “Moo,” as you probably know via a bad joke she made in the car. My dad is “Daddo,” which still counts as a nickname because it is clearly not just “dad.”

So I have named others. Especially those who were close to my heart. I have been in love three times, and had a name for each one. Is go over them, but it’s not anything I particularly enjoy writing about. It’s rather acute, because those names I give derive from such a core of passionate, unending love. They are the result of an assessment, a process by which I have come to understand the sum of who you are and have (thus) given thee a name. If that makes any sense.

So I’m learning a new person, in case that wasn’t already clear. I have begun to see who she is, her past, the pain that is there, the honesty and willingness to be understood. She has a good heart, it just got paired up with the wrong kinda guy, and tried to make the most of it until breaking. He wasn’t interested in comprehending her, or becoming attune to her emotional state. And that’s not compatible with who she is. She yearns to be listen too. I was lucky to find her.

But despite all that, I have drawn a blank in a nickname. So far, there are options, but they sound trite and of poor originality. I need something that pops, that comes right off my tongue and is fun to say. And something that makes me think of her. It has to be working on multiple levels. So I have some work to do. Right now, the well does not run deep. Maybe if we dive further down a name will become apparent. As I fill in the space in the story, I’m sure inspiration will occur. But part of me is actually seriously wondering if it even will. Maybe Amanda is different, and she doesn’t need a nickname. It’s entirely possible. I have not ruled that out as an option. Right now it’s clear that neither alternative has the advantage. If it was truly meant to be then a nickname will just explode with appropriate implications. We will all understand why it is so. But I like Amanda just the way she is. A remarkable beacon of light.

I took tomorrow off, because I would have worked overtime on Sunday if I had put in a full week. They asked someone to step down for a day, no one came forward, I stepped up and took the bullet. They knew is was a double overtime day for me on Sunday, but I said to them: “it’s alright to not get one big paycheck when you know you’re going to be making a lot of money over the years. I want to be here for the long term, and I’m going to make plenty of money with you guys.”

My boss respected that frank assessment. It saved the company money in the long run, and was yet another chance for Faramir, captain of Gondor, to show his quality. I took the hit so that I would gain their respect, and they would know I had done everything I could to help out our team. I want to emerge from the pack as the leader, and the first one in line to advance beyond my current rank.

Time and effort go a long ways. And who knows what will happen?

Some Assorted Samples


IMG_0242 IMG_0244 IMG_0245

These were some of the colorful jaspers we found (yellow, green and red) with brown chalcedony and jadeite of varying colors, notably blue and green. They represent an amalgamation of various rockhounding trips we have been on over the years around California. Some remarkable specimens, very unique, you would be hard-pressed to see another one like it, ever.  They are unique snapshots into geologic history, and represent the sometimes mixed state of minerals coalescing at formation points deep in a pegmatite or similar place. We take them in a raw state and reduce them in size over the course of a month of rolling them around in a rock tumbler, with changing grits to perfect the rounding and polishing components of the procedure. We have more waiting in the wings, and some of the quartz and red aventurine from this most recent batch did not polish all the way, and will need at least 5 days more in the tumblers with some ceramic pellets to help them shine up nice. I will be photographing those once they are done, and once the next two barrels next week. For now, some great pieces, more soon to come.

February Mood Album – The Portrait

I had the idea to create another one of these “snapshot” albums, as it reflects my current emotional state and general perceptions of myself as it stands today, taking in to part the story of how I got to where I am. I’m doing this primarily for Amanda, so she can hear who I am right now. This is little more than a musical narrative, mainly built on tempo, rhythm and (loosely) content. As you know, my playlists are designed to fit on a single CD, so no more than 80 minutes. This one is 74 minutes, and goes on a bit of a twisty journey through the many facets of my consciousness.

  1. Enter Sandman – Metallica
  2. You Never Give Me Your Money – The Beatles
  3. Where The Streets Have No Name – U2
  4. I Don’t Wanna Go On With You Like That – Elton John
  5. Don’t You (Forget About Me) – Simple Minds
  6. Should’ve Known Better – Richard Marx
  7. Rage – Sonic Mayhem
  8. Beds Are Burning – Midnight Oil
  9. Tonight, Tonight – Smashing Pumpkins
  10. Just Like Heaven – The Cure
  11. Check It Out – John “Cougar” Mellencamp
  12. Ride Like The Wind – Christopher Cross
  13. The Other Guy – Little River Band
  14. True Faith – New Order
  15. The Voice – The Moody Blues
  16. Never – Heart
  17. Back In The High Life Again – Steve Winwood

Why Am I Doing This?

I write a lot about the day-to-day tribulations and triumphs of my life. By creating such an incremental narrative, I shield you from the big picture. This is not my intent, but rather, a byproduct of the format. For this post, I’d like to temporarily change that.

I have bipolar II disorder, and I am affected 85% by depression (which is not like regular depression) and 15% mania. I have had manic episodes, but they are few and far between. It’s the viciousness of the depression that presents the most problems. I have learned through years of trying to treat it, that if you do not respect how dangerous it is, it will own you. I have led my life connecting good sensations across deep chasms of self hatred, and when those connections dried up, I fell. I have done that more than once, and I do believe I have evolved beyond making that mistake over again. Bipolar depression is a crocodile that has latched itself on and will drag you under, drown you, and feast on your carcass. I have treated this dangerous foe with no regard and been crushed under it, and it has become a moral imperative not to let that happen again. I face the challenge of coping with this deadly predator in me, every day.

But I digress. What am I doing with my life? I feel, honestly, that I have squandered much of it. But I have been given many chances to come back and do better. In this most recent permutation of my independence, I am integrating the lessons I learned through many experiences of failure so that I may change. I have a deep DEEP well of shame for what I have perpetrated, and in the past, I have tried to throw myself down it. But a well is also a place where you can drink fresh water, and so too must my regret become something useful. Why am I doing this? Because I’ve lived so foolishly, so obliviously, that I now look at myself as a 31 year old man and wonder what the fuck have I been doing all this time? Resolving something of essential value from that question is pivotal. Who am I? A man burdened by his past, and resolved to change who he is to become. I have lived vicariously, and without respect for the enemy within. But things are different now.

I have awoken to find myself at the bottom of a mighty slope. In my past, I may have balked, or tried sprinting up to arrive at the top faster, but none of these methods resulted in success. Depression hates progress. It feeds on haste and poorly thought out decisions, and turns them inward. I have discovered that if I take my life and compartmentalize it down to minor successes and achievements, a slow and steady ascent begins. A climb that depression has a very hard time disputing. Each step is a fact; proof that I accomplished something good, and made myself proud. Then I do that 400,000 times in a row.

Why though? Because I want to look at the person I am and not hate him. I don’t want to be stuck forever in my mistakes. I deserve a life filled with good things, things built on a solid foundation of priorities. I know now to never put anything above my mental health. Ever. If I have any hope of falling in love, or rising up in my workplace, I must surely be healthy of mind. Depression can’t argue with days upon days of positive achievements. What is it going to tell you? That you suck? That you’re no good? Why would you listen to that, when all you have to do is point to the things you have done to make your life better? You can say to depression: you have no power here, because I have proved, over and over again, that I am worth more than you’d like me to believe.

I try hard to live a life that breaks the pattern of failure. I want something more for myself; to contribute to this world with the slightly deranged perspective I have to offer. I have so much love, passion, eccentricity, and curiosity in me that is waiting to be tapped. I know I have made many mistakes, but I will not let that hold down who I can be. I don’t want to prove anything to anyone but myself. I lead the life I live because it makes me feel good about who I am. I know I’m still bipolar, and things are more volatile for me than most, but I will not be flattened by sadness if I have a choice. Small steps up the slope will eventually get you to a place with one hell of a view.

Goodnight blog. I’m working hard, and it is paying off. I feel better about myself than I have in many years. And I intend to keep climbing. May you find peace in the journey you take towards happiness.

Bring Me A Hammer!

I’ve had a day of many mixed interactions. Mainly, I was given some helpful advice about how to correct mistakes that other employees make, as my way of doing things will surely alienate me from the idiots. Today I took a call from a customer who had done some troubleshooting regarding a drive thru timer, but when I loaded the account, there were no notes, as no service request had been created to document the interaction. I looked to see who it was that had accessed the account and failed to leave an SR, and I’ll give you one guess who it was. If you guessed Dom, you win. Again this fucking loser is failing to do even the most basic work involved in this job. So I called him out to my supervisors, and told the what I had observed, and Dom’s response was to argue with me about how he didn’t have to do his job correctly because of some bullshit logic that if he only does a little troubleshooting, he doesn’t have to create an SR. This is completely untrue, and (admittedly) infuriated my boss. I replied to that email, but I’m beginning to think I shouldn’t have. Dom went back to my bosses and expressed his feeling “thrown under the bus,” which was accurate, because I was hoping the bus would run him over and kill him. Instead, he feels betrayed. But I don’t like Dom, I never talk to him, and I don’t care one lick what he thinks about me. He can take his anger and shove it up his ass. I’m out here doing my job, and doing it well, and he’s going to get pissed that I pointed out how he doesn’t do his? That’s not a reason for me to get worked up. Dom can hate me all day long; his opinions are irrelevant.

My bosses handed me a special project yesterday, and today I finished it. Much to their surprise, I assume. They were all quick to thank me for hammering out that assignment, as it was fairly important that I do that task quickly, and correctly, so our company can get paid. So that list is now done. Right on. What’s next fellas?

I went through Kana and did a couple more tickets, but we got caught up in there too, down to just one page of issues and nearly every one of them being worked on by an agent. I’m still working on two, but I should have them resolved in the next day or so. Blog, I am not even at full throttle right now… and I’m kicking ass and taking names. Boom.

My mood has been great. I’ve had some really fantastic ongoing conversations with Amanda. I’m even going over there tonight for a bit to spend some time with her. A fitting reward for a busy, productive kinda day. I go see Dr. Judge tomorrow morning at 8:30, and I will have lots of good things to report. I have been on an upward trend, balancing the many aspects of my life. I can honestly say that I am improving in several areas, both socially and mentally. Things are headed in the right direction guys.

I’m still at work for another 30 minutes, then in a traffic snarl a the way to Amanda’s house. I’m spending the night over there on Saturday, which I’m looking forward to. Fun things in store. For sure.

**UPDATE 9:00 pm**

I just got back from Amanda’s apartment. We had yet another wonderful conversation about things that happened in the past, friends we knew mutually, memories and relationships that failed. I told her about my many bizarre sexual encounters and fails. Our pasts are similar in plight because we both thought little of ourselves, and did deplorable things in the desperate search for recognition. Acknowledgement is hard to come by, but we really do see each other. Very well. It warms my heart to be with her. So I’m going to bed with many good thoughts in my brain. I hope you have a good night blog. Be well.

Words Of Acceptance

I had quite a day today blog, on multiple levels: I began acquiring a higher level of responsibility, in that I started on a new project that my bosses handed me, and I had a deep interpersonal conversation with Amanda.

At work, I have been filing orders in a flurry, but rarely make mistakes. I have a few, but as that quantity indicates, they must be a fraction of everyone else’s. Anyway, this distinction was earned by completing another project that was handed me late last week, which I knocked out in two days. They summoned me back to take on a much more involved task. It was going to be quite elaborate (at first) because they initially wanted me to call dozens of locations. But instead, they are just building a spreadsheet where they can keep track of the errors. I am now the guy stepping up to solve the problem. And boy do I like that destination. I’m rising to the top, and I am attempting to win them over both heart and mind. I will be one of the brave who venture far from home to get paintballed. I’m going to get my ass kicked, but I’m sure as hell going to give it my best shot. As a resolve, I will exercise vigorously from tomorrow morning and going forward, because I’m not going from “totally sedentary” to “battle mode” in one day. So even if it is a couple weeks off, I sure as hell better prepare, or I am going to get owned. And I’d like to put up some kind of fight. I will not yield, even here.

Today Amanda and I got to talking about the specifics of my instability, which has resulted in three hospitalizations, two divorces, two suicide attempts, and one partner arrested for assault. And countless traumas, some self inflicted, I had endured. I told her everything: the tipping points, the things I went through, and there is still so much to say. I have had a past stained by terrible mistakes, and hidden memories. A lot of my past, I don’t want to remember. But it’s still in there, regardless. Amanda looked at me, and you know what she said? When I told her about how I always stay on top of my meds:

Thats really good. Proud of you

So that was really meaningful. Because even though I was flinging deadly projectiles at her, she held her ground. I’m impressed. My response: Amanda, wow, thank you.

She deals with 400% more suffering than I do, and she puts together a respectable life while raising a son. If you put me in that position, I would shrivel up and die. She carries far more than I ever will, and she does it with a sense of humor and a smile. No matter how hard it gets, she can slip right in amidst the regulars and hold her own. To have her respect is huge, as I am amazed by how she manages to hold it all together. I know she suffers sometimes, and all I can think about is how I’d like to be there for her when that happens, and sympathize with her pain. And let her know that no matter how dark it gets, I will be the candle behind her shoulder. At least, this is my hope. That we could make a great team, as we storm our way back into normalcy and live our independent lives. I think that I still have a lot of questions, because I don’t know Amanda well enough to build a general profile, an understanding of who she is. But these things will take time to uncover, and I’m really great with that. I hope I am right about where I feel things are headed, but much of that story remains to be written.

I had therapy with Margaret this morning, and that went super well. She told me her daughter has bipolar disorder, type 2 (just like mine). I am glad they are figuring it out now, so they can discuss treatment options. Because the road to finding the drugs that work for you is long and full of strife. But it is one we all take, we mentally ill united. She can still lead a great life, if she makes her illness the priority.

So for now I say goodnight blog. And happy hump day for us all.

Keep Your Head Down

Today I continued working with the insanity of a frothy rabid squirrel. Or something approximate to that. In truth, the day seemed to go roaring by because I kept myself busy in Kana (help ticketing system), and also answered as many incoming calls as were thrown my way. It was light in the queues, as I may have fielded less than 20. The rest in my log were all outgoing calls I made following up on those tickets I mentioned. I managed to knock out another four of them, meanwhile, no one else did a single one. It’s a shame that the attitude in the office is to do as little as possible and still get paid for it. Dom was his usual idiot self, and putting himself in a worktime mode so he could gossip about shoes and not have to take an incoming call. Chap was (again) failing to communicate to people, repeating the same dumb things he always says, and sounding completely unenthusiastic about his lot. This is the sad state of rampant ineptitude that permeates my office.

On a tangential note: I have signed up to go get my ass kicked at paintball in the next few weeks. I’m not sure if it will actually happen, but I’ve never done it before and would like to try. I know it hurts, and I’m a massive target, so I will likely be hit a lot, but this is a great chance to create a bond and form a reputation that will earn me respect. I know it’s somewhat trivial, but this seems to be my chance to become the subject of many stories, legends even. We shall see if it becomes a reality.

I have also been texting with Amanda all day, or as often as breaks permit. I am finding that my trust and respect for her continues to grow as we get to know each other better. I’m feeling some big things inside me, pieces that are clicking together, becoming something much greater. I care for her profoundly, and I know she is fond of me. We could make an excellent team in life and love, because it is daunting to face the cold world alone (with no one covering your back). Things are headed in a good direction, and there are still many more steps to take.

Well, I’ve had a busy, blurry day. I’m glad that it is over, and tomorrow I have therapy with Margaret. I have lots to talk about.


Today I will be headed in to work with a smile on my face. I am often left in a pleasing disposition whenever I get a chance to hang around Amanda (which I did for a few hours last night). Her smile and her laugh are like little doses of happy to my otherwise butter-less toast life. I have had a good day off (yesterday) and am ready to go get after it today, in much the same way I have been, by creating new work to do and keeping myself busy while I am on the clock. It’s better for my mental health (and the passage of time) that I keep a bunch of tasks open and in progress; I feel more purposeful, useful and proud when I receive feedback. It’s just good all around policy.

This week I have two important appointments: my therapy session with Margaret on Wednesday morning, and my Psychiatry appointment with Dr. Judge on Friday. I will be relaying good news: my progress towards a healthy and stable life has been solid and steady. I am adding new things to my meager existence as I see it appropriate to do so, or as my health permits. I sometimes wonder if I’m doing ok, like somehow I doubt the good feelings inside me; that they are somehow not real. But I have lots of nagging voices that tell me nasty things, as these are a huge part of how my illness manifests itself in my mind. I have no complaints about my medications: since adding the lithium I have been in a good way, and that was back on November 10th. I have been able to handle my many responsibilities at work and home, while also investing some emotions in Amanda and her son. To me, this all points to a good place, where I will reside in a state of tranquility and have an ally with me to help protect me against rapidly occurring changes in mood. I intend to be healthy, and I reciprocate observations: we are both mentally ill, and the more eyes and ears we have on the scene the better.


So blog, I’m about ready to head in to work. I hope you all have a good Tuesday. I will (undoubtedly) be busy.


Meeting and playing with Tristan was a huge step forward for me. I care about Amanda, and I really want to get to know her son. He and I clicked over his toys, which loosely resembled Lego people. I think one of them may have been. But they were Minecraft themed. Anyway, forks and spoons were also involved in the games. I had fun with him, I hope one day of many to come. I like them both very much.

I hope I’m guiding my life in a productive direction. I told my parents the other night that I was just trying to make the most I had with my available resources, and to try my hardest to impress myself. I figure that’s a good way to get ahead.

Today is a sleepy day. I am quite exhausted, it turns out. I actually napped for a couple of hours, which is so very strange for me to do. I’m going to prepare a light lunch and that should have me back on track. I would have been very hard-pressed to turn in any good effort today at work if I had gone.

I’m downloading some music. Turns out I was missing an entire Jethro Tull album from my collection (The Broadsword and the Beast). So I’m trying to grab a copy of it. But it has like 1 seed. So it may take me a while. I’m eagerly awaiting the arrival of my little Acer EE PC power cord do I can turn it into a Diablo II machine for when I go over to Amanda’s house. That will be fun. I already downloaded the game clients to my thumb drive for install. Radness. So many things are coming together. I did my shopping and am now officially restocked on the 3 things I eat normally. And I did my dishes again.

On a rest day like this one, I can feel a little lost. I think it might just be my neurochemistry being a bit off, as sometimes happens to me on a Monday after an abbreviated weekend. I really will be glad to get two days off in a row this week. I’m going to introduce Amanda to my mom at least as they look at the new stones together (two barrels will be done on Saturday).

I think I’m going to have another coffee and relax.

**UPDATE 8:00 pm**

I spent the evening with Amanda, and we had fun. We watched the first half hour of The Battle of the Five Armies, just to the point where the dwarves seal up the entrance to Erebor just as the survivors from Laketown enter Dale. Amanda guessed (correctly) that Bilbo had the Arkenstone the whole time, even though they never actually show him picking it up until a flashback during this movie. But just like in the book, he pockets the Arkenstone because in his heart he believes Smaug was right – it would only drive Thorin insane to have it. My favorite part is still when Bard nails Smaug with that black arrow. Eat that dragon!

We played some Diablo II and got a couple of waypoints in act 2. We completed Atma’s quest and got a new skill. I leveled twice. I’m now a 22. We decided to wait until tomorrow night to do the maggot lair. It’s 3 levels deep with no waypoints and is a long and brutal affair. But we need the staff of kings, so here we go.

I’m home now about ready to shut it down. I have had a good day, not productive, albeit. But I’m ready to tackle tomorrow head on.


This weekend is packed with things to do. I worked most of Saturday, but then went and met my parents at the RV park and moved some stuff to storage. I stayed with them most of the evening, as this is my first time seeing them in a month or so. I woke up and went to breakfast with Amanda and Tristan on Sunday. That went great. I had fun playing with him and talking to Amanda. It was REALLY nice to see her again. The rest of the early afternoon was spent catching up on chores such as dishes, vacuuming, laundry and cleaning the bathroom. All completed.

I spent the evening at my uncle’s house with my family. My cousin David was there and his son Christian and daughter Chloe. They are both a lot of fun. The new generation, alive and well. We all watched the super bowl, which turned out to be a thrilling game, decided by one pivotal mistake by the defending champion Seahawks in the final 20 seconds of the game. And one of the most outlandish catches I’ve ever seen in all my time watching the NFL.

I never went shopping. So I basically have zero food to survive on today and for the rest of the week. A situation I must rectify with action. I felt like I wanted to take today off, and so I did. I have some accrued PTO (paid time off) and I will be able to use it. After all the running around and constantly doing shit, I really do need a day to just kick back and chill out. I took my one day off and jammed it with shit to do, so naturally I don’t feel rested at all. Just looking out for myself here with a little preventative action.

Today I still have things I need to accomplish. And I’m affording myself the time to go get them done. It was a good weekend, mind you, but I never really caught up on the energy recharge. I just kept burning the same reserves for both days. I want to be able to make it through this week without flaming out.

So today is relaxation day. I go to see Margaret on Wednesday and Dr. Judge on Friday. I will need to at least order my refills, and collect them when I go in for therapy. I’m really excited to see my girlfriend Amanda today too. We have been physically apart for a week. I’m sure we have some catching up to do.

Anyway. Have a great day. This check in is over.