“It takes more courage to reveal insecurities than to hide them, more strength to relate to people than to dominate them, more ‘manhood’ to abide by thought-out principles rather than blind reflex. Toughness is in the soul and spirit, not in muscles and an immature mind.”—Alex Karras
One of the things that DBSA suggests people with depression or bipolar disorder do is create a “wellness book.” This is a book with a list of your known triggers and weak spots, your support team’s contact information, inspirational quotes, suggestions for when you’re feeling down (or in the case of bipolar, up,) and so forth. I’ve created my own with hymns, lots of quotes (which I’m sharing here on Tumblr one at a time,) funny pictures of kittens, and so on.
I wrote all of that to provide context to the following statement: I made the back cover say Don’t Panic, in large, friendly letters. :)
WHERE WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO VISIT ON YOUR PLANET?
If I could go to just one place, right this second I would like to go to a super-private resort spa. I’m feeling stressed and I don’t want to deal with other people.
But as a general thing, lately my focus has been on a great big tour of Europe. Spain, Russia, Poland, Scotland, Ireland, England… if I had to pick exactly ONE thing I’d choose something really old and fabulous, like the Coliseum in Rome. But I’m not good at picking just one thing, so.
The friends list was kind of a downer. The experiences one was funny, though. My longest computer streak was probably a good 34 hours (there’s a reason people with bipolar II think hypomania isn’t all bad, though we’re still generally wrong about that.)
I just wanted to let you know that I'm really enjoying your blog. It's helping me see that the words "you're not alone" aren't just words. All the feelings I've thought were crazy and unbeatable have been felt by someone else. I don't know why, exactly, that's so comforting...but it is. Oh man, it is.
Thanks! I get the same feeling. Even my therapist, I think, doesn’t quite “get it” the way fellow travelers do.
I can’t do in-person group therapy for a list of reasons, including but not limited to the I can’t meet strangers or make myself go to places and hey now’s a good time to sleep for ten hours let’s do that instead thing. But I do online group therapy, when I’m feeling up to it. Why yes, talking to people online does involve many of the same insecurities as talking in person. I even get the shortness of breath, light headedness, and nausea; glad you asked.
My bipolar hypomania tells me it’s suddenly a really good idea to go to the video store and rent The A-Team right now.
My avoidant personality disorder says there will be people there, and I’ll look like an idiot walking through the door, and my clothes are wrong, and I’ll make the clerk think I’m a total spaz, and I’ll be seen, and it’s all very hard, and why is leaving the house necessary anyway when I have Netflix and air conditioning?
But my ADHD reminds me that I can’t find the car keys, and have put stuff off so long the store is closed.
I keep finding typos in my previous posts and fixing them. This is going to drive me batty. I’m going to start delaying my posts just to give myself an incentive to proof them before people can see them.
If I could do this will all my interactions with people in the real world, life would be much less stressful.
I cried when my therapist, who we will now be calling J, said I might have ADD. I hate the feeling that I’m getting yet another “Demeter is defective” label stuck on me. She introduced it after we’d been talking for over a year about self esteem, about my feeling like I never get stuff done, about why I only get myself to take out the trash about once a month, about the enormous piles of undone filing in my office. We actually had to stop using the “Self Esteem” book series because I kept coming up with valid, sensible reasons for hating myself and feeling like a failure.
Part of me hates, hates hates that I’m on any kind of medication at all. It feels like a daily reinforcement of my failures as a person. It reminds me, constantly, that I am not whole, which leads straight into the dangerous complete lack of self-worth thing that I struggle with whenever I’m not actively hypomanic. And they taste bad, are inconvenient, cost money, and are difficult to remember to take, obtain, and locate within my house (thank you, ADHD.)
The new hot thing for the kids today is this site, apparently. Let’s see whether I can play with it, too.
You can call me Demeter. This is my designated public safe space, because alltheotherones have rules about what does and doesn’t constitute an appropriate thing to talk about, and sometimes I want to get off on a tangent about photography or science fiction or something, and I don’t get the sense of “sharing” from my journal that sometimes is necessary.
This place is all about me. I am giving myself permission to be 100% selfish here. Just wanted to let you know that up front. I actually have to force myself to be assertive in real life, you see.