Middle of the Night Ramblings

It’s the middle of the night and I am unable to sleep. Having insomnia sucks shit. The symptoms of my PTSD are not helping the insomnia. As I sit here writing this post I can’t help but realize this going to be a post about nothing or what I like to say; “ramblings.” More or less, this post is going to be one of them post that is helping me through a rough moment or two when dealing with the symptoms of PTSD and depression.

As I write this post, I realize I can wake up my partner, Junior, to help me through the symptoms of my mental health conditions however, he has to get up in about three hours to go to work. He is a firefighter and his shifts are typically 24-hours. I know if things get too bad with my symptoms, I’ll wake him up.

This is where using my DBT skills are quite helpful to me. For one thing, blogging is a quite helpful for me and an extremely useful tool. Reading is also considered a skill for me. I love reading and enjoy it. Unfortunately, right now reading is difficult for me. Mainly due to the voices I hear when I am extremely depressed. I experience psychosis when my depression hits me hard and it sucks. I wish I didn’t experience psychosis however I feel like it ultimately makes me a stronger person when it goes a way as my depression subsides.

I think I’m going to at least attempt at getting some sleep. I hope everyone is sleeping well and/or is having a good day when they read this particular post. Peace Out, World!!!

 

Weekly Check-In

Good Evening, World!!! It’s been a few weeks since I last did a weekly check-in. As many of you know, I’ve been struggling lately. Despite my recent struggles, I’ve decided to make an effort to do some things this week.

One thing I did do this week was go to my appointments. Attending my appointments is what helped me NOT isolate as much as I would have done. When I saw my case manager I informed her of what was going regarding the isolation as well as the voices I’m hearing. We discussed going to a group specifically about hearing voices. At this point in time I am putting that on hold for various reason that I might tell you at a later time. We also discussed me isolating. My case manager and I talked about ways on how I can not isolate. Most of which I am willing to do yet have difficulty doing so.

Another thing I did this week was today. I went and visited my grandparents. My dad was there as he is staying over at their place for the weekend. It was nice to my dad a grandparents. My grandparents helped my dad raise me. I love my dad and grandparents so much. I feel lucky (and blessed) that I still have a set of grandparents at the age of 38. Not many folks my age have one grandparent still alive much let a set.

As I mentioned earlier, I’ve been isolating a great deal. That usually means, I do introverted types of things. One of those things I tend to do when I am isolating is play one of my musical instruments. My instrument of choice is my flute as I’ve been playing it for 25 years however it needs some major repairing so I go to the two I’m teaching myself to play. I’ve been practicing my recorder a great deal the last few weeks. Still not very good but its helping a great deal.

Another thing I tend to do a lot when I isolate is art. I’ve been doing some coloring, collaging and water colors. One of these days, I’m going to need to take some picture to show you all. With all the art work I have been doing lately, I’ve realized that I can give the art as holiday gifts especially if I frame it.

The other thing that I do when I isolate is read. I usually read comic books when I am in isolation mode as my concentration is usually low however this time around I am actually able to read a regular book. I am reading Ship of Magic by Robin Hobb. In fact I met her at the Emerald City Comicon this year. She signed a four books for me. She is from the Pacific Northwest. I’m on 30 pages into the book but so far so good.

Thanks for reading and I hope to give a book review on Ship of Magic when I am finish with it. I hope everyone has a good rest of your weekend. Peace Out, World!!!

A Relaxing Hump Day (Wednesday)

Hello World!!! This morning I woke up with Junior kissing me on the cheek after coming home from work. I couldn’t think of a better way to wake than having my partner wake me up than the way Junior did this morning.

We decided to have a low key day which started off with breakfast. I fixed Junior an omelet with a side of fresh fruit and chocolate milk. Like I suspected Junior was famished due working his regular 24 hour shift that was more challenging than usual.

A shift we ended up discussing. Junior needed to discuss what his shift about for a multitude of reasons. One of which was that he dealt with a child abuse case that included six children. Junior is a firefighter and if you ask any firefighter out there anything that includes a child is one of the most difficult calls they go on especially if it includes child abuse. As we discussed the child abuse call, Junior couldn’t help but tell me that once his crew was done with the call he thought about the “shit” I went through which helped him have that much more compassion and empathy for the children he helped. Junior also went on two separate calls that involved two separate women who were the victims of “brutal sexual assaults.” He and all firefighters have a difficult time dealing with calls that involve both children and/or victims of an assault of any kind especially sexual assault.

As Junior and I discussed the difficult calls he was noon, the topic of sex came up. Junior brought up the fact that he finds it quite difficult to have sex and be intimate after shifts that include child abuse and/or sexual assault. As we discussed the difficulties he had with sex and intimacy after a shift like yesterdays, Junior stated he always seems have better understanding of how I must feel regarding my PTSD symptoms even though he will “never fully understand.” As we finished our discussion Junior realized how exhausted he was from his shift and went to bed to get a few hours of sleep.

As Junior slept, I decided to start reading a book I bought at Emerald City Comic-Con (ECCC) back in March of this year (2017). The book I started reading is Green Rider by Kristen Britain. I, in fact was able to get this book signed by the author after attending a panel she was on at ECCC. A panel I almost didn’t attend but happy I did. I’m in fact looking forward to attending ECCC in 2018 and hope that Kristen Britain is a guest as I will most likely will attend a panel if she speaks on one. The reason being is that when she signed my copy of Green Rider she took fifteen minutes of her time to talk with me even though she did not have to do so.

Looks like I got on the to topic of Emerald City Comic-Con when I was wanting to discuss the book I am reading. So, on that note let get back on back to the topic of Green Rider. So far I am really enjoying the book. I’m only on page 48 and starting the sixth chapter yet I’m finding myself having difficulties putting it down and wanting to get back to reading it. When I find myself having difficulties putting a book down and wanting to pick it back up as soon as possible then it must be a good book.

In fact after Junior woke up from his nap I told him about Green Rider and now he is wanting to read it. After telling Junior about the book we ate a lite lunch and then went rollerblading around a local lake at t local park. As we rollerbladed we discussed a great deal of stuff. Most of it was regarding plans for what we want to do the rest of the day as well as rest of the week before he goes back to work on Sunday for his regular shift as well as an overtime shift on Monday.

After rollerblading at a local park we decided to rent a couple of movies at a local mom and pop video store. Since we were already out and about we decided to pick up my meds from the pharmacy. When we arrived home we ended up watching one of the movies we picked up from the video store. We then fixed and ate dinner. After dinner we decided to go for a walk around the neighborhood. Now we are home watching the nine o’clock news.

As I near the end this post after telling you about my day, it turned out to be a relaxing hump day (Wednesday). Having a relaxing day is extremely helpful for my recovery as well as decreasing the symptoms of my mental health diagnoses. In fact everything I brought up in this post is quite helpful for me and my recovery.  As many of you know my recovery means the world to me and wouldn’t give up the path of recovery for all the money any in the world.

Something else that means the world to me is my time with Junior and with that being said, I want to spend time with him. That means this is the end of this particular blog post. I hope everyone has a good evening as well as good nights sleep. Peace out!!!

Weekly Check-In

Good Afternoon!!! This week hasn’t been all that eventful despite it being a busy week for me. Busy and uneventful is always a good thing when things haven’t been going all that well.

I saw my doctor on Monday to get blood work done. Blood work that would see if there is anything health wise that could be causing my depression to not improve. All the blood test came back “normal” except my Vitamin D levels. I’m now going to be on a prescription strength dose of Vitamin D instead of the over the counter supplement. I’m hoping this does the trick with at least improving the depression enough to where using my Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) skills will be slightly more easier to use than they currently are.

Now that we are on the topic of DBT, I received a call on Wednesday from one of the clinicians from the agency I am a consumer (client) at, that my name finally came up to be able to attend one of the DBT groups there.  It’s only taken way too long but hey I’m glad I’m going to be able to attend. I do have to go through a screening process which I am pretty sure is not all that difficult to do since I went through the screening process at another agency to get into their two year intensive outpatient DBT program which I graduated from. The DBT group at the agency I am a consumer of is not as challenging as the one I graduated from but I’m okay with that since I am in need of a refresher. Yes, I would like it to be challenging and from my understanding it is slightly more challenging that it was the last time I took it. Just as long as being in DBT helps me get back to doing well, I don’t care how challenging it is.

A DBT skill that is challenging for me to do is the Self-Soothing skill and my new therapist is attempting to have me use this particular skill. When I saw her on Tuesday we discussed things that happened since the last time I saw her which led to an uncomfortable conversation for me. We talked about how I feel like I don’t deserve to self soothe. Self soothing is not exactly easy for me.

In fact I’ve been think great deal about self soothing since seeing my therapist and the many ways I actually do self soothe but don’t do enough. Music is the main way I self soothe and actually do this everyday by listening to it. Now playing my flute is extremely self soothing and don’t do enough of it. Hopefully I will make more of an effort to play my flute more.

Another self soothing skill that I tend to do and didn’t realize it was self soothing for me is art. The type of art I tend to do is color and/or collage with some drawing. I color and collage to self soothe and express myself. I tend to draw to express myself; usually when I am angry, scared or feeling like a scared child. I’m not very good a drawing but it sure helps when I’m not doing well. Now coloring and collaging I think I’m pretty good at and am grateful that is soothes me.

Talking about art brings me up to another thing I did this week and that was hanging out with my friend Susan from https://bravelybipolar.wordpress.com/ and her husband on Thursday. Susan does glass art. Actually, she does stained glass and I had her make me a piece which is quite lovely. We met up so I could get the stained glass piece she made me and we hung out for a couple of hours. We went to lunch and had some pretty awesome food.

Food always seems to be a major part of getting together with friends which brings me up to what I did yesterday. I hung out with two friends that I’ve known for the last two decades. We ate some pretty good food and the main topic of discussion was the books we are reading and/or just finished reading. During this get together with my two friends we realized that starting a book club with ourselves and a few other friends would be a good way to get together. In fact we thought it is the perfect excuse to get together. My two friends and I are thinking about asking two to three other individuals to join in this book club and hope to start it up sometime in mid to late September as many people go on vacation this time of year due to it being summer in my neck of the woods. September seems like the perfect time to start a book club as kids go back to school and people tend to have a more of a regular schedule.

Speaking of schedule’s, I need to get going. I need to go and eat. In fact my doctor wants me to eat on a more regular basis. As I end this post I hope all of you have a great weekend and enjoy the nice weather outside. Peace Out!!!

Self-Care Saturday

I’m sitting here trying to figure out what to do now that my laundry is done. I’m not even sure if I am up to going out and about because I’m a lil on edge due to PTSD symptoms. PTSD is quite difficult to deal with as the symptoms can pop up at any given point in time of day or night. It sucks a great deal.

As much as PTSD sucks, I cant let it get in the way of letting me live my life. But then again sometimes my PTSD symptoms acts up a little bit more when I am needing do take a day to do good self-care. I also have be a lil wary to make sure it is a sign to do good self-care because it can be symptoms of other diagnosis trying to sneak their way in.

As I decipher if I am needing to make an extra effort to do good self-care by laying low today, I need to go and do some light grocery shopping. In fact Junior and I are going to go grocery shopping together. We are thinking about staying in this weekend.

Yes, part of the reasoning of staying in is due to my PTSD symptoms. The other part is that we are wanting to spend some quality time together. Quality time together for us means talking about what’s going on in our lives, discussing current events as well as the books we are reading, watching movies and just plain ole enjoying each others company. If our quality time leads to making love then its a plus. A plus because of the severity of the PTSD symptoms I am having.

Despite the increase of my PTSD symptoms, I am grateful that things are slowly starting to improve. That means my concentration is improving and finally able focus on reading. I’m reading an awesome book called “High Price” by Carl Hart. I am hoping once I’m finished with the book, I will do a book review on it.

I think I need to end this post as Junior is wanting to go grocery shopping so he can make me “something special for dinner.”  Junior is an awesome cook and look forward to whatever he makes. As I end this post, I want to thank you for reading. Thanks!!! Peace out!!!

 

 

First Time Attendee to Emerald City Comicon

I attended the Emerald City Comicon for the first time and had a blast. I know its now Wednesday but wanted to share my experience with you all I had the weekend we just had (March 2 – March 5).

It being my first ever time attending any form of such event, I didn’t know what to expect. Thursday, I ended up just taking it all in by wondering around. I did a lot of people watching but met up with a friend to attend a panel  focusing on the women side of comic books. Mainly the panel was on women superhero’s or the lack there of. Wonder Woman was brought up a great deal at this panel and rightfully so.

Speaking of Wonder Woman, I did some cosplay and dressed as Wonder Woman on Friday. I attended many cosplay events on Friday that I attended with friends. As fun as cosplay was, it was a bit overwhelming for me.

Despite Friday being overwhelming for me, I think I had the most fun on Saturday. I attended many panels. In fact all the panels I attended were publishers and authors of Sci-Fi/Fantasy genre. My favorite panel of the entire event happened on Saturday and it was Women in fantasy with authors Callie Bates, Kristen Britain and Robin Hobb with editor Anne Groell moderating.  I had a blast being able to hear them speak and talk with them one on one.

I did attend on Sunday but that was the day, I really got overwhelmed and only stayed a couple of hours. I did get a lot down in the two to three hours I was there. I ended up buying five Wonder Woman magnets  and a Wonder Woman bathrobe. I also was able to get nine book Sci-Fi/Fantasy books. Four of which I received for free and seven of the nine books I did get I was able to get signed by the authors.

I may had have had my struggles regarding my lived experience with a mental health condition at Emerald City Comicon but I am thrilled I went. Overall, attending ECCC ultimately helped with the symptoms of my mental health diagnosis. I am definitely  attending next year but I will be staying in a hotel in downtown as I think it will ultimately be easier for everything.  Have a wonderful rest of your week. Peace Out!!!

Goals for 2016

Happy New Years!!!! It’s that time of year where everyone makes New Years resolutions that many people wont accomplish. I don’t make New Years resolutions because I never was able to accomplish. I do make New Years goals and I have found that I do accomplish or come close to accomplishing by the end of the year. Below is the list of my goals for the coming year. I realize that some of my goals are partially dependent on other people  but that doesn’t mean I cant at least try to attain the goal.

1)  Get my tattoo touch up. (I actually accomplished this goal yesterday 1/1/2016 at 12noon.)

2)  Add to my tattoo. I currently have a semicolon tattoo and I want to add to it. I want to get the semicolon trinity and eventually the semicolon Sol Invictus. However right now its just the trinity I am aiming for.

3)  Read 12 books. It was my goal to do this last year but it didn’t happen. I did read 10 books last year. (Comic books don’t count)

4)  Drink less soda. I currently drink a liter of soda a day. My goal is to be down to one 20oz soda a week by the end of the year. Right now I am starting off with one 20oz  soda a day and hope to go down from there. So far so good but of course its only the second day of the year.

5)  Get my flute fixed. I can still play my flute however it desperately needs repaired. Plus, I want to get lessens.

6)  Take flute lessons. I love playing the flute. I am not very good at it but it helps me a great deal.

7)  Train to do the Big Climb in my area to support The American Lung Association. I am planning on doing the Big Climb in 2017 but I am starting the training now. (Actually, I started yesterday.)

8)  Learn how to drive (legally). Basically get my drivers license. This will come in handy for me both in my personal life and my professional life. Professionally many places require a drivers license.

9)  Get a job as a peer support specialist (peer counselor). This is one of those goals that is partially up to someone else  however if I do my part with applying for peer specialist jobs then I’ve accomplished what I have intended to do and that is to get my name out there.

10) Get back into blogging more regularly. Due to my mental illness rearing its ugly head I haven’t blogged much. I realize that blogging helps to me in many ways. One of those ways is that it gives me structure on days that I don’t have much to do.

11) Continue being engaged with my recovery no matter how difficult it may be at times. This means going to my appointments with my therapist and psychiatric nurse practitioner (ARNP). It also means doing “homework” my therapist wants me to do. It also means being open to suggestions my therapist has for me.

As you can tell I have a lot of goals this year. In fact one of my goals has already been accomplished. So one goal down and ten more to go. I hope that at the end of year I can tell you that I have accomplished each one of my goals. Have a wonderful day and have a very Happy New Years.