Happy to Work For It…

Those of you who follow me have probably noticed that I didn’t quite make the deadline I set in my last post. I had planned to return to blogging by October 21st, and it’s now November 18th… but hey, sh*t happens. *Palm, forehead*

I am happy to say that not all of that time has been spent in vain (some of it, to be sure; but not all). I’ve begun to repair my relationship with my baby brother. I managed to clean my house (and asked my husband for help, instead of expecting him to read my mind). I joined a book club with my Mama. I returned to my home-group meeting in the Anonymous. I registered for classes this Spring. And, I’ve been studying like crazy for placement exams. All in all? It’s not the worst way that I’ve been known to spend my time.

I haven’t been walking. My husband and I started, and then I got sick and had to be on antibiotics for ten days (which always fells me)… but we will start again soon.

I haven’t been writing. Instead, I’ve been talking to my husband. Really talking. And though we have a long road ahead of us, I’m starting to feel like we both have our feet firmly on the pavement. He continues to be patient. I continue to be passionate. Different sides of the canyon, but with far less space between them.

I haven’t been reading. It’s not that I haven’t had the desire; it’s that I’ve lacked the energy. Studying mathematics for hours each day takes its toll. (Especially on someone who far prefers the arts and humanities.)

I didn’t make that schedule I was talking about. Instead, I’ve just gotten off my duff when I don’t feel like it. Instead of getting angry or frustrated with whatever’s going on in my head, I move into action of some kind. I’ve tackled a few tasks that I’ve been putting off for far too long, and still have some yet to do (those that I’d rather leave at the bottom of my mental trunk gathering dust). With each new day comes a new opportunity, and I have tried to make it count, in my own way.

I’m being gentler with myself, and (I hope) I’m being gentler with my husband. It isn’t easy, but it has made a surprising difference in both my mood and attitude; both of which make my marriage a more enjoyable place to be.

I’ve had more pleasant days than not, as of late… and continue to hope that it isn’t just a passing phase. I’m told that you have to work for happiness… and I’m finally trying to do just that. I’ll be sure to let you know how it goes.

P.S. I did give up – once more! – on that damnable, stupid book. *Sigh*

Twenty-One Days

Okay… so, those of you who follow this blog know that I have eradicated it in the past. I write for a couple of days each week – usually for a couple of weeks – then disappear for a couple of weeks (or months), and then return.

Upon my return, I delete all of my posts and then usually f*ck with the design for awhile. Each time I am convinced that if I can just get the aesthetics right, I will then be compelled to write. (It has never worked out that way.)

You might also notice that my previous post (“F*ck M*A*S*H, Suicide is Anything BUT Painless”) has been deleted. However, this is not an attempt to destroy the blog. Removing the post was not out of a desire to hide or destroy my voice… it was because the piece wasn’t what I wanted it to be.

When re-reading it, I noticed that I was trying to lend justification to my actions… when really, there are very few situations that justify violence (and to be clear, suicide is an act of violence).

I do plan to re-write the piece, but not until I have a chance to do some research, and get a little further away from my subjective feelings on the matter.

You may also notice that I have removed some tags from my previous posts. “Zero-to-hero” was a tag I read about (somewhere in the WordPress archives) for bloggers who were just starting out. Though I may be trying to re-launch this blog, I am far from “just starting out.” So to be fair, I removed that tag from my posts.

In addition, I have temporarily removed the “90 posts in 90 days” tag. In the rooms of the Anonymous, they recommend that newcomers – or people re-dedicating to the program – attend 90 meetings in 90 days.

Attending multiple meetings on a Sunday so that you can justify skipping the rest of the week is not what they mean when they say that, nor was it my intention here. I was attempting to motivate myself to write daily… and miserably failed on that front.

That’s not to say that I can’t do it; but I have to do it fairly. One post each day for ninety days… and I can start again on Wednesday.

I can hear you thinking, Why Wednesday? Why not today?

The answer to that question is that I have a few things I need to work out before then.

Having resigned from the school district over COVID19 (i.e. the failure to properly protect staff and students), I now find myself with free-time on my hands, and my husband has stated that he is willing to give me time to write… time that I have thus far used to procrastinate.

I have an inherent resistance to schedules (that is stronger than most because of my BPD), and an even deeper fear that I don’t have what it takes to be a writer. As such, I’ve left both tasks up in the air – in an ominous holding pattern – whilst I dance on the runway, pretending to be clearing it for landing; and it’s time to get my butt back up into the control tower.

So… between today and Wednesday, I need to create an outline for myself. One that includes:

  • scheduled time to do internet research
  • scheduled time for reading the multiple non-fiction titles I’ve purchased (some of them have been sitting on a shelf for years)
  • scheduled time to write
  • scheduled time to exercise

Sad as it may sound, I also have to remind myself to do the basic stuff – eat, sleep, shower, brush my teeth, etc.

I remember reading that it takes twenty-one days to change and/or build a habit. Three weeks. It doesn’t sound like an overwhelming amount of time… until you start thinking about the challenge of uncomfortable actions.

I’m not comfortable with responsibility, because accountability comes with it… and my fellow addicts and “crazy folk” will understand that both words carry an incredible amount of weight.

Today, I feel like I can handle it. Tomorrow, I may not. There will be days that I just can’t, and I will have to allow for that – giving bad days permission to happen, but not the power to derail my plans.

I haven’t read “Sometimes I Act Crazy” in a couple of days. My basal instinct – in response to that – is to let the snarky, disgusted voice in my head say with conviction, “You’ve already failed. No point in continuing to try.” But there is a point in continuing to try. Failure is a possibility, but so to is sucess.

I would rather fail while trying to succeed than to never try at all. At the latest, I will see you again on Wednesday, Dear Reader. Thank you for sticking with me.

Is

I cannot seem to finish a decent post.

I’ve tried outlining before I begin to write.

I’ve tried using word maps.

I’ve tried just furiously typing whatever pops into my head, as I hunch over the laptop in a frenzied state of frustration. (I’m saving those keyboard rants as drafts… but I can say with 75% certainty that there is little hope of me ever revisiting them in the future.)

Nothing is working.

I wish I were more like my dear friend, Ashley. She writes the fantastic Mental Health @ Home blog that I adore, and never seems to be at a loss for words.

I, on the other hand, can’t even seem to get going with prompts.

I am still reading that damnable book for an hour each day. I’m taking care of the ice cube trays in the freezer each morning. Today, I even managed a shower upon awakening (well, relative to waking).

I am desperately clinging to the wise words of my husband, “You can only do what you can do, and that’s okay… no matter how much or how little that happens to be. It’s not good, nor bad. It just is.”

Okay, seriously. My brain has stalled and I’m publishing non-sense. Hop over to Ashley’s site. (Again, that’s Mental Health @ Home.) She’s a phenomenal writer. Whereas today, I just is.

Good Grief, Indeed.

Well, friends… I wrote for awhile this morning – some of it good, some of it not – and then got stuck in the mire of the not so good. (I don’t know why I was writing what I was writing, nor who in the hell I was writing it for.) I took a break, forced myself to eat something, turned on a favorite, familiar drama series, and did some coloring on my phone. The goal was to relax, but I couldn’t.

I kept thinking about having to read Sometimes I Act Crazy. I heard a timer ticking in my head (though my timer doesn’t actually tick), and couldn’t breathe. “F*ck it!” I thought. “I am not attempting that sh*t again! It’s dark and frightening… and there ain’t no light at the end of that tunnel!”

But then, seconds before the cement dried on my resolution to quit, I decided to just suck it the f*ck up and get it over with; thinking with mock enthusiasm, “There is no fear greater than the fear that lives inside your batsh*t crazy head.”

I might have over-estimated the fear that lives inside my head; because thus far, this book is still pretty damn frightening. I’m into Chapter Two… and it’s still a very scary text about a horrifying mental affliction. One I may never control, nor ever escape. Good grief, indeed.

Your Ridiculously Easy is Another Woman’s Monumental…

Genuinely frustrated with the recent downturn in my mood, and having yelled at my husband for not understanding my disease – going as far as to have accused him of lying about having read books on the subject – I decided it’s time for me to get busy understanding my disease… and for real this time.

I’ve been sitting on “Sometimes I Act Crazy: Living with Borderline Personality Disorder” (written by Jerold J. Kreisman, M.D.) since I finally decided to entertain the idea that I most definitely have a problem for which I lack understanding.

I’ve read the first chapter – and first chapter only – several times over the years. Though it’s meant to be helpful (and perhaps hopeful), it’s actually extremely overwhelming and somewhat dreary. I underline passages (always finding a new one that I failed to underline the last time), and take notes with unbridled enthusiasm… and then think: What this book is basically saying is, “My God says you’re f*cked.” in a thick, Braveheart-esque Scottish brogue.

Not one to enjoy being judged by my books, I slam it shut, and then ignore it for another couple of months.

I picked it up again today, and decided to set a timer for one hour. To read the book for one hour only, and to stop when the timer rang. (When I start a task, I’m always in a mad rush to finish it in order to impress… well, I never know who it is I’m trying to impress. Just that I’m damn sure going to impress them!)

When the bell went off, I wasn’t happy with the progress I had made (I haven’t even finished re-reading that damnable first chapter), but I did close the book! I even tried to tell myself in a pseudo-cheerful voice, “It’s more than you had under your belt this morning… moping on the Wall of Thought with the Peanuts gang.”

My next (rather monumental) task is to keep that particular book closed until tomorrow. That might sound absurd; but I assure you, it isn’t.

The book will call.

The voices in my head will whisper, If you don’t read straight through, and finish it now, you’ll never finish it.

My skin will feel like it itches from the inside.

I will click my nails against the chip in my right front tooth, until my husband can no longer suppress a sideways look of exasperation (at which point I will stop for approximately 25 seconds, before subconsciously resuming said annoying action).

I might not be able to eat.

It may even interfere with my ability to get a good night’s rest.

It is, however, my next task… and I am going to accomplish it!

Then tomorrow, I am going to set the timer, and do it all over again.

With the book, and the ninety posts in ninety days (without deleting anything)? It’s going to be a very trying week.

Silver lining? Day one is done.

Channeling Charlie Brown

This is where I am. Slumped over the wall of thought inside my head. Again. This is the beginning and the end. This is a place of creation and destruction. (Blog. Delete. Rinse. Repeat.) I want to write, but can’t find the words (and even if I do, they’ll be wrong tomorrow). I want to read, but can’t find the books (and even if I do, they won’t seem interesting tomorrow). I want to walk, but can’t find my feet (and even if I do, they’ll be lost again tomorrow). I desire to do tomorrow; but I can’t stop thinking today.

Being “crazy” truly, deeply sucks. Good grief…