Posts Tagged ‘Uncategorized’

How Cynical Am I?

You Are 52% Cynical

Yes, you are cynical, but more than anything, you’re a realist.
You see what’s screwed up in the world, but you also take time to remember what’s right.

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My recipe.

The Recipe For Irene

3 parts Giddiness
2 parts Intellect
1 part Magnetism

Splash of Bravery

Sip slowly on the beach

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Here are some new web logs that I have been visiting and that I think you may enjoy also. Art by Lisa Sarsfield, Blue Yonder, Creative Every Day, Dreams & Ghosts, Art and Ghosts.

Most of the stones in the bowl, my son and I collected at Goat Rock Beach in Sonoma County, California in 1993. That’s a long time ago, isn’t it? That kind of makes me sad to think so much time has passed since then. I treasure the stones.

Have you seen Trijnie’s new painting? It’s lovely!


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Today I weigh 89.4 kilos. Yeah! I am doing the right things when it comes to food. For breakfast I had a kiwi, for lunch I had Cup a Soup, for dinner I had Cup a Soup and for desert I had a non fat yogurt. I found out that when you add two packages of Cup a Soup to a mug of hot water, you get a tastier, thicker soup and it is more filling too. You can also combine flavors, such as mushroom and asparagus, or Chinese chicken with vegetable soup. If you double up on any of the creamy soups, you get a really thick soup and that is just great. I am very full after eating that and I am not going hungry at all.

I slept until 6 o’clock this morning again, thanks to the oxazepam. That means I have slept nine and a half hours, which is pretty good in my book. Of course, it means getting a bit of a late start, but I don’t have to go anywhere this morning, so I can take my time. I do have to walk the dog, but he is still sound asleep in the bedroom, so I have a little bit of time yet.

Yesterday I has my appointment with my SPN and it went well. By the way, the appointment lasts 45 minutes, not half an hour like I thought it was. We discussed my official diagnosis, which is Bipolar II Disorder with Rapid Cycling. That’s how it is written down in my electronic file. We also filled out the paperwork to apply for part time creative therapy at the hospital. That was a four page application form, in which they want to know everything under the sun. What they actually try to do is match the right kind of therapy to you, because they offer different kinds depending on what they think your need is.

I cleaned the apartment when I got home and then there wasn’t much left for me to do, so in the afternoon I rode my bike into town and visited Eduard at his work. He was very busy, because there were special showings having to do with Aids awareness, but I sat at my regular table and had a capuchino with just one cookie as opposed to the four that I usually have. I am becoming a real fixture there, nobody is surprised to see me anymore. I sort of blend in with the rest of the people and the furniture. It’s fun to sit there and listen to the music and watch all the people in the café. Yesterday, there were a lot of gay people there, not that you could specifically tell, but the men were very well dressed. Which is probably a cliché.

Well, now Eduard and Jesker are up, but Jesker is sleeping again by Eduard’s chair. He is keeping an eye on me anyway, because every time I move, he wakes up to look at me. He probably wants to go out now, so I will finish writing this and get the show on the road.

Have a great day people. Ciao…

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I was laying in bed and dreaming that I had gotten up and was writing this post. I just can’t remember what I was writing about, which is kind of a shame and I should try harder the next time I have such an experience. Imagine my surprise when I found myself still laying in bed, just waking up.

It is kind of early still, but I did go to sleep early and I fell asleep on the sofa before that, so I think I have had enough sleep for now. I feel wide awake enough anyway. I am not yawning and I feel quite perky. I could actually do any number of intricate jobs now and do them competently, so I am quite sure that I am awake now and not dreaming.

Yesterday morning I made a bucket of suds and cleaned the bedroom really well. There was a layer of dust on everything and it was a real pleasure to wipe it off. You see how I am revealing to you my negligent house cleaning skills by telling you there was a layer of dust. I cleaned every little item in the bedroom, and all the big items too. Then I got the vacuum cleaner and vacuumed the floor and the walls and the ceiling where all the spider rag was. The more I looked, the more I saw. I vacuumed up some spiders too, they were daddy long legs and hanging out in the corners of the room. Yes, I was ruthless.

It sure felt good to get it done and I rewarded myself with a cup of decaf Senseo and a piece of Eduard’s cumin cheese. My cheese was all gone, so I had to have some of his. I am not sure if he appreciates me eating his cheese, but I figure that there is so little in the apartment that I can eat, that necessity breaks all the rules. The last bite of everything I eat is always for Jesker, except for the raisin bread which he doesn’t seem to care for. He likes cumin cheese.

At noon time, my sister and I took the dogs for a walk to the pond. The weather was nice enough, although it was a bit chilly. There were ominous looking clouds in the sky, but we took a chance and went anyway. The dogs love going to the pond, as they can walk free there and pee against every bush. It’s Jesker’s favorite walk and he is always worn out afterwards and takes a a good nap when we get home. He is ten years old, after all. When we were halfway around the pond, it started to rain, but there are so many trees there, that we hardly noticed it and it stopped raining when we got clear of the trees. I think we have higher connections with the weather gods.

I tell my sister a little bit about my struggles with my moods, but she has a hard time with it all and doesn’t get into it too much. She has already told me one time that she can’t handle too much of it. So it’s not something that I can really share with her and find support with. I understand this and am not really hurt by it. It just is a shame and I do wish it was different, but she has made herself clear on this issue. She is not someone I can call when everything goes to hell in a hand basket. I just briefly keep her informed and that is it.

My sister has her times when she is closer to me and her times when she withdraws a little bit. I think she withdraws when I have a harder time. I think she does this out of self protection. I think the craziness is too difficult for her to handle and that she has seen too much of it in her lifetime. When she was growing up, and the only child left at home, she saw our father go through some heavy stuff and I think she never properly got over that. Subsequently she saw me go down the drain and I think it all became too scary for her.

Well, need I say that yesterday was another successful day? I took my second dose of Topamax a little before noontime and was spared any rapid cycling, so I think I have discovered the magic formula. There was not even a question of me rapid cycling, as at 2:45 pm I was making a leek pie and in the best of moods. There was not a hair on my head thinking about anything negative and no bad thoughts entered my head. At 3:15 pm I was putting the leek pie in the oven and making myself a cup of decaf. The leek pie was done at 4 pm and all was right with the world.

It’s amazing how little I actually worry when I don’t have this major down shift in my moods. The worrisome thoughts stay at a bare minimum where they belong and are only slightly bothersome. I give them the attention they need, but that is it. There is none of this tortuous self defeating mind f***ing.

Yesterday, Eduard picked up a book for me at the bookstore that is about major mood changes. It is a work book and you actually have to sit down with a notebook and do a lot of work. It applies cognitive and behavior therapy to your mood changes and helps you understand them and deal with them better. The author says, that if you do it well, it will take you at least three months to get through the book. That sounds serious enough, doesn’t it? I figure that I need all the help I can get and the more I help myself, the better.

Eduard and I have decided not to use the regular coffee maker anymore and it has now been relegated to a shelf in the kitchen where it can’t be easily used. We both like the Senseo so much that we had stopped drinking the regular coffee. I would still make a pot in the morning, but then neither one of us was drinking it. The Senseo is a bit more expensive to drink, but it is ever so much better and we are worth it. There are treats in life that you should not do without and this is one of them. Sometimes you just have to be really good for yourself.

Yesterday, I ate too much and now I have a sore stomach from it. Eduard had gotten me freshly baked raisin bread from the baker instead of the raisin bread from the super market and it was very good. Subsequently, I ate too much of it. You see how food is still an issue for me and how I still have bad control if there is something really good in the cupboards. There is a limit to how much I can eat, but then I do stretch that limit too. So, now I have to tell Eduard not to get the freshly baked raisin bread from the baker, no matter how good it tastes. There is a very greedy eating monster inside of me. Sort of like the cookie monster on Sesame Street. See food, eat food! It is for people like me that the gastric band was invented. It will be good to have it filled again soon, limiting how much I can eat even more.

The trick is not to have very good foods in the house at all. There can’t be too many tempting things. Especially not food that I have not eaten for a while and then think I have to have a lot of because it is so good. It is like holding out a clump of gold to a gold digger. I get a fever! Sometimes, I imagine
myself eating chocolates and I know that if I were faced with a box of them, I would eat as many as I could and then some. Especially dark chocolates with a creamy filling. So, obviously you don’t go out and buy those. There are numerous foods that I could name that I would react to in the same way, so it is better never to have those around at all and I am glad that I don’t do the grocery shopping, because there would be way too much temptation and I would come home with candy and cookies. Those would be my stomach filling calories then.

There was a program on TV yesterday about old wooden statues that were made in the Middle Ages for the church. Much older than these don’t exist, because most of them didn’t survive the onslaught of time and woodworm. Sculptors in the Low Countries didn’t use stone, as it had to be imported and was very expensive. Therefor they turned to wood, which is a shame, because so little of it survived. The statues were very intricately carved with very much detail and some of them were carved in separate pieces and the joined together with small dowels. One statue consisted of more than 160 separate pieces. Most of them were painted, but very little of the paint survived. In the nineteenth century, prudes decided that the statues should not have breasts and penises and bottoms and they were all cut off. None of the female statues that are found in churches have breasts and it isn’t as if they had very ample bosoms to start with.

It’s a shame that there was almost no stone to carve with, as we would have had a rich legacy of sculptures. There was definitely talent in the area. We do have the sculptures on the Gothic churches, but they have been badly eroded by weather and pollution and all need restoring or replacing. Of course, there is none of the marvelous marble sculpture that you find in the Mediterranean countries. Then of course there was also the storming of the sculptures during the Reformation, when a lot of it was destroyed in the zeal of Protestantism. People sure do terrible things in the name of religion.

Which reminds me that I would very much still like to have some sort of religious symbol myself, but that I can’t think of which one to choose. I always think of a cross, because of my obvious Christian beginnings, but then I think that is a bit hypocritical, because I don’t really believe that God died on the cross, although I am sure that the historical figure Jesus may have. I also like the Mary statues, but more in the sense of the Mother Goddess symbolism. I couldn’t get a Celtic cross, because I am not a Celt. I am a Saxon and I don’t know of any symbolism out of pagan times that they had, although it may be worth looking into. Well, that’s something I need to discover.

Okay, that’s it for me for today. I have just had my last cup of regular Senseo and now I am switching to decaf. It isn’t really bothering me and I don’t go through caffeine withdrawal.

Have a great day, people. Ciao…

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Hi, here I am again. Excuse my absence, things didn’t quite work out yesterday as planned, so I couldn’t write a post and I was unable to leave comments on other peoples blogs or answer comments on mine. Some days turn out like that, when you plan them quite differently ahead of time.

Yesterday, in the morning, I got up too late. For a change I slept until 6 o’clock in the morning. I sat behind the computer for a while with my sleepy head and read some blogs, but I thought I would come back later in the day when I was more awake and alert and leave comments then and write a post. Unluckily, no such thing happened. Well, I did come back, but I was in no shape to leave comments that would have amounted to anything sensible, so I didn’t leave any. Nor was I in any shape to write a post. I started to, but deleted it and then didn’t try again, because it was all a sob story and a lot of nonsense.

I was ultra rapid cycling yesterday and this time the down time lasted very long, from 11:30 in the morning until 12:30 in the night, so that really took some time, and when it was all over, I slept and slept until six o’clock this morning. Luckily, I don’t have to go anywhere this morning, so I can take my time sitting here and try to make a comprehensive story of it all.

The problem started when we were working on our resumes during the training and we came to the part where we had to explain gaps in our resume. Well, I had a nice looking resume until 1994, with some work experience, lots of volunteer work and different courses I had taken over the years. The problem is that everything stops very abruptly in 1994 until the present. There is no activity whatsoever. Nothing, nada, niets, 1994 being the year that I get my diagnosis and become a psychiatric patient. Years follow of hospitalizations and suicide attempts and being very ill and finding the right medications. Shit happens, but I don’t do any work, nor volunteer work, nor do I take any courses for self improvement.

At the training, it was explained to us what a problem this could be, to explain the gaps in your resume and how would you go about this, and I realized that I had made a big mistake in not letting anybody, including my case manager, know up to this point that I am a psychiatric patient with a bipolar disorder. I did not do this, because my psychiatrist had given me the advice not to and I saw how this had been the wrong advice, because it was coming back to haunt me now. I have 13 unexplainable years and what do I do about them?

When I got back home, I felt very discouraged and wrote my psychiatrist an email saying that I was and what he suggested I do now and that I thought I had better inform my case manager at this point about the real situation instead of lying about it as I had been doing. Finally, after some hours, he wrote back with a totally inaccurate and inadequate email that made me more upset and angry than I already was and which made me grab the telephone and call his mobile number. I really tore into him and was very angry at him for the email he sent me and for informing me incorrectly and he got the full load of that. Then I calmed down sufficiently to make an appointment with him for today at one o’clock.

Th rest of the day was awful, I was unable to get back in a proper mood. It had started to go downhill at 11:30 in the morning and it kept going downhill after that, with me reaching a two rating and not knowing how to climb out of the hole I was in. I cried a lot and felt desperation and madness. Eduard could not help me and had to go to work in the evening, which made me feel even more desperate and scared. I asked him to stay home and he really couldn’t, but he did manage to come home between 8 and 9 pm to check on me and hold my hand and rub my back and that helped. I fell asleep on the sofa from pure exhaustion at 10 pm and when I woke up at 12:30 at night, my mood was over and I felt halfway normal again, but like someone with a hangover. Luckily, Eduard was home and not asleep yet and I talked to him and asked him how bad it had been and if I had done any irreparable damage. He assured me I had not, but that it had been bad.

This morning I am okay. Yesterday, during all of this, my daughter called and my friend Joost and I was unable to talk to either one of them at that time. They are probably worried now and I hope they are reading this blog, so they know what happened and that I am okay now. I wouldn’t give myself a seven rating, but I can manage a five.

So, that is the story of yesterday, people. I can’t make it prettier than it was and I hope today will be better and that the ultra rapid cycling will have stopped and that there will be no other incident to start it up again. I think I am going to have a real heart to heart talk with my psychiatrist and ask him to refer me to a psychiatrist there in the regional office who specializes in the bipolar disorder, because over the past few years I have gotten the distinct impression that my psychiatrist doesn’t know enough about it and that I am not in the safest of hands. I will not go into details about this at this point, but you’ll have to take my word for it.

I don’t know if the social psychiatric service at this regional office has a psychiatrist who specializes in the bipolar disorder. I just hope there is one. There must be one who is better than mine. I just know that I need better guidance and support than I am getting now. There needs to be a more assertive hands on approach and none of this flying by the seat of our pants, hit and run psychiatry. I need someone to recognize the moods I am in, be they hypo manic or depressive, before I even recognize them myself and who can run interference before I am yelling, “Wolf.” With whom I only need to say, “It is going badly now,” and who will then take me seriously and take the proper actions.

Well, that is all I have to tell you for right now. It isn’t much, but it is enough for now. Wish they could be happier tidings, but hopefully they will be in the next post. Life catches up with you sometimes. It wears you out. Man, it sure does.

Have a great day everybody, wish me luck this afternoon, keep your fingers crossed in finding a new psychiatrist. Ciao…

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I give this next award to:

After giving it many hours of long hard thought I have decided to give the gender neutral Awesome Dude Blogger award to Neda of Papiers Collés. I give it to her for all of her wonderful collages which always inspire me to think about life’s issues just a little bit more than I might have otherwise. She inspires me to find the words to describe the feelings that her work evoke in me. This was not an easy choice to make and I did consider other people’s blogs that I thought were worthy of the award also, but in the end Neda won, because she is provocative and just a little bit controversial, just enough to be just a little bit uncomfortable at times and that makes me feel better, because I would hate to become complacent. So Neda, I hope you will enjoy this award and appreciate it for what it is, namely a token of my appreciation for your blog and for your beautiful work and for your splendid mind. I have spoken!

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