Life and Complications

MaskI was hoping to post today about my tramping shakedown trip, but to be honest, I couldn’t be bothered.  I’m tired, low on energy and strength and just running out of joy.

Thank goodness I have an appointment with a psychiatrist today.  I was going to say that she will have the answers, but she doesn’t.  She’s an awesome sounding board though.  I am pretty much in a holding pattern at the moment, waiting to get into the hospital to see a psychologist, and fortunately this psychiatrist has taken me under her wing in the meantime.

To make it even nicer, another lady from the Mental Health Unit rang me last week, just to make sure everything was OK, and that I was coping and to let me know that there is only a couple of people ahead of me on the list, so I should get a psychologist soon.  I sometimes wish that I was staying with the psychiatrist, she has a sense of humour and a real understanding and is so good at validating my feelings, even if they are of confusion.  And she thanks me for sharing things with her.

As for complications – I guess having changed my ideas about what I do and don’t want to do, I now have to work out how to go about changing the situation, and unfortunately most of it is money based, so unless I find a money tree, or deal in illegal legal highs (which by the way I don’t condone or use), then money isn’t going to miraculously appear in front of me.  But I have had an idea, I just need to approach a couple of people to see if it is feasible to work it.

Anyway, another day, another dollar (which goes to the family budget, not my work budget) and I better get myself organised.




Its May already – come on 2014 – slow down a little!

Funny how priorities change.  At the beginning of the year I had a list of ideas that I wanted to work on, and that involved physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional things.  It involved things like spending time doing what I want to do, and what makes me happy.

At the beginning of the year, I thought that working with kids was what I wanted.  Now I am not so sure.

The school holidays have just ended and so has Camp Nano.  I didn’t get much more written on my Taniwha story this month – things happen, life happens.  My husband and I ended up in Auckland unexpectedly, but made the most of it by visiting with his Dad in Napier for a couple of nights on our way home.

I went for a shakedown tramp up Lake Rotoiti, and took the kids.  Learnt my lesson there.  Youngest son was great – carried 20kg

View from Lake Head Hut

View from Lake Head Hut

pack with little complaint.  The older two – one took a pillow and sleeping bag, the other took a rugby ball.  No warm clothes like they had been warned to do.  I won’t be taking them anywhere again.

So this brings me back to my priorities.  I no longer want to with people who don’t appreciate me.  I want to do things that bring me happiness and joy.  Things that I want to do, like tramping, volunteer work, spending time with friends who encourage and uplift me.

And writing and proofreading is one of them.  A writer friend and I have been in discussion about starting a proofreading business.  I proofread for her and she really likes my work.  I haven’t completed my proofreading course yet – because I really haven’t had time – well I probably have, just haven’t scheduled it correctly.  But I am seriously considering it.  But I want to come up with a name and a pitch that is catchy, eye-catching and interesting.  I don’t want to be Karen’s Proofreading Services – I want something like Book Doc, or SpellWrite.  I also need someone computer savvy to create me a simple pretty logo and webpage.

Oh well, dreams are free I guess.  One day I will be able to do what I want to do, and not have to make everyone else happy in the process.

On the Brighter Side of Life!

It has been two weeks since I revisited my Doctor – I visit her again tomorrow.  I have changed my antidepressant again, but this time, I have not crashed, gone backwards or felt miserable during the changeover.  I am hoping that this might be the one.

I had a heart to heart with my Doctor.  I told her that I am sick of having these ups and downs.  I want to be normal (yeah – lol – I know!), I want to be consistent, instead of changing every time the tablets don’t work.  This isn’t the last resort – there is the Mental Health Unit and Psychiatrists – which is a path I may have to go down, but in the meantime, I have to keep trying.

The good news is, these tablets have kept me stable – not up, not down.  Just stable.  I have had a few afternoon naps, but not as many as before, and I am finding that each day, there is more and more I can do.  I have been helping my husband out at work – he has just gone out on his own, and I have become an apprentice cable tugger – what he calls me – and it involves pulling cables through walls.  I have also cleaned up after him and set out the detectors and sounders he needed for the rooms.  It has all worked out really nicely.

I have taken up meditation – although I don’t do as much as I would like, although there is a very simple one that I do, when I get into bed at night.  That is noticing my breathing and saying to myself – rising (inhale), falling (exhale).  Just doing that even when I am stressed is enough to make me calmer, and I recognise my cue now – I get ringing in my left ear – that is the first indication that I am stressed.  Funny that.

I have also taken up yoga.  And my husband enjoys it too.  We have done a couple of sessions together, and we have both commented on how it gives us an inner calm, and makes us feel taller – because of the stretches that we have been doing.  It is nice to find something pleasant that I can do with my husband.

And he has become my biggest support.  It is wonderful to have my husband beside me, encouraging me, loving me, supporting me.  He have allowed me time to do things I need to do, space to have time to myself and there to support me when I need him.  It is lovely to have such encouragement within the family home.

And of course, where would I be without my wonderful friends, Cassie, Grace, Zenobia, Tee, Deryn – all have passed on such loving and encouraging words to me lately, and I appreciate that.  It is nice to have friends who take the time out of their day to send me an email to say – thinking of you!

So, things are looking up, and hopefully I can start getting back into some writing, and then I can have more interesting things to write about than my mental state – although it is fun trying to untangle threads that are knotted up within your brain – NOT!

But here is something to consider:

I want my laptop with me, and a bed by the window!

Another Glitch in the System of My Brain

Well this is new to me, Anxiety.  I was wondering why my depression was getting worse, and had it pegged to a lot of little things adding up to create my depression.  I visited with my counsellor and we discussed symptoms, and apparently, I am suffering from heightened Anxiety, which will trigger my depression (which triggers anxiety, which triggers anxiety etc etc.)

So, the fact that my ears start ringing, my shoulders start hunching, and my head gets light headed means that I need to take a deep breath and try to relax.  Unfortunately that doesn’t help when you happen to be off on a major episode (nothing makes sense, you feel irritable, anxious, alone, nobody loves you etc) and my Mum and Bobba had to come up with some medication to calm me down.  It worked, but it made me feel pretty crappy the next day.

Bangs Head on Desk by Tolan88 @ deviantart

Bangs Head on Desk by Tolan88 @ deviantart

One downside of anxiety – your self esteem plummets.  And I mean plummets.  It may as well not exist.  I have no confidence in myself at all, I call into question everything that I am good at, and I feel emtpy and useless.  The emptiness and loneliness is hard.  No matter who is in your world, you feel like no one cares, and no one wants to be around a sad sack.

Fortunately I am able to keep my game face on while I am working, but I am tired by the time I get home.  Very tired, which can trigger an anxiety attack.  Almost feels like you are damned if you do and damned if you don’t.

All I have to do is breathe.  Find ways to relax.  Get back into my yoga and take it quietly.  Just be.  Sit on a chair and be aware of the chair on the back of your legs, your bottom and back.  Let your arms rest.  Take in a deep breath and let it out.  Be aware of your breathing.

So this is where I am at going into Christmas.  A busy time of year without having to worry about anxiety, but fortuntately I have a doctors visit next week, so hopefully that will help make things improve.

If I don’t post on here beforehand, hope you have a wonderful and blessed Christmas.

2013 Recap

My Thursday posts have always been about myself and my mental health, and I quite liked the little things that I came up with.  Whether I inspired someone or not, at least I got something out of it for myself.

Things have been rather hectic lately – for the last two months anyway.  My husband and I have started working on our marriage and the results are nothing short of a miracle.  We are getting closer than ever and it is taking a while to forgive past transgressions, but they are being forgiven and we are moving together into a new world.

That includes a new venture – my husband is going to be working for himself once more.  And while he is nervous about this, I actually feel confident because I know he has the know how and ability to make this work.  Hopefully between the two of us we will  make this business a success.

I have really enjoyed the Teacher Aide work I have done this year, I have some close relationships with some of the kids, which I have to keep at arms length, even though I desperately want to wrap them up in my arms and hug them.  Most of them are so bruised by life, and I know I can’t make it better for them, but at least I can be there for them.

I have managed to write three novellas this year, and plot out the first story in a trilogy, so I am excited about next year.  Even have myself a few new critiquing partners, and looking forward to working with them.  A couple of them are published, so I am hoping that we can really pull things together.

Overall, it has been an up and down year for me, but going into the worst part of the year for me, I actually feel – even – that is the only way I can describe it.  Even.  Not up, not down, but on an even keel.  Long may it continue.

World War Me!

I thought of lots of cool names for this post, but to be honest, couldn’t remember a single one once I started typing, so I guess this one will have to fit.  But it does.

The last few weeks have been hell in one form or another.  Physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually I have been tested within an inch of my life, and to be honest, I am too tired to really care.

It all started about 5 weeks ago, when my family went up to the school hall to play some basketball and we ended up playing dodgeball.  Unfortunately, my beloved stepsons are a little competitive, and one threw the ball, just as I ducked, and it got me in the lower jaw.  My jaw went one way, my head snapped another, and long story short, ended up at A&E with a suspected broken jaw.  A follow up X-ray on the Monday showed that it wasn’t broken and I could go back to eating normal food.

The following week was the school holidays, and we were playing basketball after my husband arrived home from school.  The local park has an outdoor half court, so we were playing out there.  Three times the ball bounced off my knuckles.  Three times it really hurt, until my little knuckle on my right hand swelled up.  I suspect it is broken, but know that nothing can be done other than taping it to the next finger, which is pretty much all I am doing with it at the moment.

The next week, kids had gone home and my youngest was with his Nanna’s so I was enjoying a few days home alone, when I twisted my ankle and fell off the top step.  I heard something snap, so was a little cautious when I got up.  Everything moved okay, and I gingerly walked to the shop and back.  The next day my ankle was quite large.  The following day I had abdominal surgery, and was in hospital for the day.

For a week, I could barely get out of my own way, tired and physically sore.  My ankle was still quite sore and swollen – in fact it looked like some one had inserted a tennis ball over my ankle (you are looking at your own ankles now… aren’t you!)

So last week, my first week back at school, I decided to get my ankle checked.  I have ruptured the ligament that goes down to my toes and bruised the ligament that goes to the bottom of my foot.  I have to wear a splint for 3 months before I can consider physio, and it can take up to a year for it to heal… just what I needed to hear.

On top of that, I have been back at counselling, kicking around the same old chestnut, which just doesn’t want to be resolved.  I am actually sick to death of rehashing the same thing over and over, but it still hurts, which means there is still pain and guilt involved.  I hate that I can’t process it and get over it, but apparently a woman likes to take her time when she is dealing with such issues.

So writing wise – I am still 3k off finishing Whose that Girl, and NaNo is about to start.   Arrgghh!  I have actually started plotting my NaNo story, so hopefully that means I can start, but I need to get the Whose that Girl story finished as well.  There’s nothing like a little bit of stress to keep me honest.

So there you go, my world has been in the wars lately, and hopefully I have seen the last of the bad luck (and the ACC forms – two so far!).  I think ACC are hoping that I start having some good luck now too!

Rules I Live By

Moses and the Ten commandmentsThe other day, a fellow author and I were talking about the good things that God has done for us, and how the conception is out there that God is a god of punishment and strict rules and behaviours that we have to live by.  And this isn’t the truth.  Funnily enough I got to thinking about that and realised that there is a lot of misconception out there about God – who is the God of my understanding.

I don’t preach on my blog, but I felt compelled to put this down on my blog, and it is out there now, for you to decide.

I don’t claim to be a Christian any longer, because there are so many negative connotations behind that word.  Instead, I prefer to use believer.  I believe in what he has done for me, the wondrous kind things he has done, the disasters that have been in my life, God has allowed that to happen for a purpose.

God gave us 10 Commandments to live by – not “Proposals”, not “Items for negotiation” these are not up for discussion, and even their wording doesn’t allow for any misinterpretation of them:

1.  I am the Lord your God, you shall have no god above me

2. You shall not make a carved image of any likeness to worship – GOD IS AROUND US, ALWAYS

3. You shall not take the Lords name in vain – NO SWEARING

4. Remember the Sabbath – HAVE A DAY OF REST

5.  Honour your Mother and Father – MUM AND DAD KNOW BEST

6. You shall not commit murder – Durr

7. You shall not commit adultery – DON’T HAVE SEX OR THINK ABOUT SEX WITH SOMEONE ELSE

8. You shall not steal – Durr

9. You shall not bear false witness (or lie) to your neighbour – DON’T LIE

10 – You shall not covet your neighbours property – DON’T ENVY OTHER PEOPLE’S PROPERTY

Simple – and there for a reason.   Can you imagine what the world would be like today, if everyone lived by these simple rules?  There is nothing harsh or strict about them.  Look at society today, it has degraded because of these rules being broken.

And when God sent his Son to die for everyone (yes, EVERYONE, not just the Jews, or the Christians) who did Jesus hang out with?  It wasn’t the rich people who went to Synagogue every week, it wasn’t the nice people who attended on a regular basis.  Jesus hung out with the social pariahs, the lepers, the tax collectors, the shepherds, the fishermen, the prostitutes.  If Jesus was alive today, who would he hang out with?  The gang houses, with prostitutes, homosexuals, the homeless, those on benefits, all those that society consider are beneath them.  Before Jesus was killed by the Jews, he issued a new commandment –

Jesus and the masses11 – Love thy neighbour.

What did he mean by that?  Try to be true to those that are around you, not just physically your neighbour, but also those in your community, whether they be black or white, lesbian or gay, upper class or lower class, struggling to make ends meet or have money coming out there ears.  Be there for them, love them, show them that you care about them, befriend them.

God isn’t just about punishment, he gave us promises to live by and straight forward easy to understand rules – nothing fancy, complicated or hard to understand, just some good old fashioned sensible rules.

God gave me these rules to make my life uncomplicated and easy to cope with.  He is there with me every step of the way to help me understand why he has put these rules in place.  I love these simple rules which my life is governed by.  I am not perfect, I claim to be someone I am not, I have lied, I have envied, and I have committed adultery, but God loves me enough to give me a second, third, fourth, ninety ninth… up to the’ nth chance.  He loves me so much he sent his son to die for me, and give me one more rule.  Love thy Neighbour.  I try to practice this every day.

What rules do you live by?