What Is Done & What Remains Undone

Score: +3

It’s Saturday, and it’s really hot here in the desert southwest. I have been keeping busy with some mandatory responsibilities and sweating a lot. Blah.

All this incessant heat has me thinking about my life, now that I’m huddled in the shade trying not to move. If there’s one thing that I’ve managed to let go of, it’s my past. Since coming off the cannabis recently, I had expected to have a lot of nightmares about stuff that happened in my last relationship because the pot suppresses dreaming entirely (but then uncorks a torrent of dreams for days). Instead, I have had no nightmares, just odd dreams with little or no context and very random things happening. Nothing out of the ordinary. To be honest, I don’t have much trauma from my past relationship, except for that night I tried to kill myself. I don’t like holding on to bad feelings, and negative things because they are poison for the mind. In situations like a divorce, the memories and incidents should be abandoned (once processed for merit), because they are never going to be properly resolved or brought to any sort of closure. I could dwell, but there’s not much to be gained there. I don’t harbor any resentment for Jax anymore. I’ve let go of that part of my life, and fully moved on. Going back is useless.

So this weekend I’m the on call tech, and my phone has already rang twice. Amanda had her art in a TV show that was filed here in San Diego today and we are going back there to pick up her canvases which were used as decorations around the house. It’s going to be on A&E networks and FYI at some point in the the fall, on a show called “Tiny House Hunters.” It’s just another great opportunity for Amanda’s burgeoning art career. She is more than a month sober and deep into her treatment program. Things for her have been improving over these last few weeks. She has taken on the lion’s share of the housework and has started tackling projects around the apartment. I see her pride coming out, and she wants the place she lives in to be a reflection of how she feels, and as that feeling gets clearer and stronger, things will begin to take shape in her environment.

As for me, I’m recovering and doing well. I experienced a very low point back early in the week, but have struggled up and out of that pit. I am on a higher dose of lithium, but I doubt that would have had any effect by now. My symptoms are fading as time passes, which is a sign that I am not headed for a prolonged bout with bipolar depression.

I have such a good life right now. A life that I am happy with and that I can develop respect for myself in. I don’t disregard the errors of my past (of which there are many), but I don’t hold on to them like they were something precious that I desire to keep. I have learned something of quality from my negative experiences, in order to improve myself for the future. But I refuse to be upset, hurt, bitter or even resentful of things that happened to me, and because of me. What’s the point of all the bad energy? Does it help me feel good about myself? Do I gain some sort of satisfaction by being miserable? Do I yearn to be the victim of my own calamitous life? See how these questions all point to a destructive thought sequence with no possible positive outcome?

I’m all about improving. Life is constantly providing me with new things to learn about, and from. The things that we experience (with a proper interpretation) are there for us to build off of; we grow and change in a manner of our own choosing. We can, therefore, exist in the past, where nothing can be changed, or thrive in the future, where anything is possible. If life has any one lesson to be gleaned it’s that unpredictability reigns supreme. That’s what keeps me (at least) tuned in for the next new thing that will happen, whatever the outcome. There’s no judgement, only understanding.

 

Sop have a good night, and take the path that makes you feel alive, full and real. This world has so much to offer, if we can disconnect from regret and move on from pain.

Daze Without Drugs

Score: +2

I have been doing better, not great, but better. Stopping my daily use of cannabis has been difficult. It only adds to the tumult of these recent days of struggle. I made it through my entire shift today without leaving early, and I solved a lot of big issues today. I wanted to come home and smoke very badly, but I did not, and I have been trying to preoccupy myself with other things so I don’t think about getting high to feel good after work. I had been using the cannabis to unwind from my high-paced stressful job, but that was dependency, and not a healthy thing. Amanda and I agreed that I should be able to stop for at least a month, and I think I can do that. It’s been 4 days.

 

I’m trying to hunker-down and get through my week. Things at work have been both revealing and ugly, positive and regretful. My depression has been improving slightly as the days go by, and the Lithium certainly hasn’t taken effect yet. I think if I’m stable and functional by Monday, I can exit crisis mode. I’m going to be ok. Hold the line.

Rebound

Score: +1

Today marked some incremental progress out of the depths of depression. I did not feel as acutely bad as I did yesterday, and I took steps to help myself out of despair. 

The events of life have been stressful of late, and I feel like I just kinda ran out of mental power earlier this week. I didn’t stay for my entire shift today, and went to go see my doctor. We have decided to increase the Lithium Carbonate by 300 mg. I can’t go any higher on the Geodon or Welbutrin, as they are already at max dose. 

My mood is improving naturally, but I don’t want to just assume I am going to continue to feel better. I have been destroyed by my bipolar depression before, and I can’t let that happen again. So I am taking steps to ensure that things do not get out of control. 

Amanda has her own wagon of shit to deal with, yet she has still managed to help me figure things out logically. She points out that I shouldn’t care what people at work think of me, because I don’t like them and what they think about me is irrelevant. This is true, yet it is still difficult to go to a place every day where I am ubiquitously hated. 

Anyway. Today was better. Not great, but improving slowly. 

Worse

Score: -3

Today was largely awful. I got made fun of and yelled at by a co worker and felt severely depressed all day. I thought it might be ok this morning but that evaporated into unquenchable sadness. My depression is rapidly becoming worse, and I am taking evasive action. 

I don’t really have the words to go into the various things which have pushed me down today. I’m not in trouble at work, quite the contrary. The idiot who felt like it was his place to scold me today was reprimanded and given direction to not talk to me anymore. I had a pretty revealing chat with my two supervisors today, and they really treated me like a peer. So that was good. 

But I still feel acutely bad. I cried several times once I got home, and sat in the hot shower twice trying to get my mind off the sadness. I just have to hope that tomorrow is a better day. If it is not, I am considering going to the mental hospital and admiring myself. 

I am going to talk to my psychiatrist tomorrow and hopefully there is something we can do to get me straightened out. 

Down

Score: +0.5

Some days, the cards just aren’t very good. When I woke up today, I knew things were not right. I was mopey, depressed, and dwelling on some trauma from my divorce for no good reason. There was no instigator, besides the neurochemical culprit, I believe. So I went to work and got through 3/4 of it before going home for the day. I just didn’t feel like being mister customer service anymore. 

Life has been more stressful than it was earlier this year. My workload has increased and I am busy handling high-level issues everyday. I have taken over ownership of the three ticketing systems our customers use to let us know they have a problem. And summer is the busiest time of year for what I do. I like my job, but it can be grating at times. 

My relationship with Amanda is being put to the test, as she battles out of the trough of severe depression. She is not working and going to a treatment program 3 days a week. She is seeing her therapist and psychiatrist regularly and is clearly walking the path to recovery. I know that her struggle is largely internal, so I do the best I can to help her sort through her anxieties and depressed thoughts. I will be there for her, however she needs me to be, and I will not let go of her. We are doing the best we can to survive this difficult time and maintain our collective sanity all the while. 

Today was a hard day. With Amanda’s advice, I am discontinuing smoking weed. I think I was using it to cope with my anxiety  and stress from work, and it is never good to rely on a substance to alliviate symptoms as the primary strategy. If I do smoke again, I will first have to prove to myself that I can go without it and still handle my life. It should be no different to have it or not have it. So I stopped today, and may not resume again until months have passed. Possibly longer. Until I am satasfied that I do not use it to treat a problem, but as a recreational activity with no negative context. 

I think things are going pretty good overall, but there are bound to be hiccups. Depression can derail me sometimes, but a good nights sleep can usually resolve the imbalances. So goodnight blog. It’s been a difficult  day, and I’m tired of feeling depressed.