Thursday, January 31, 2008
We paid for our kitty to have surgery and she's doing well. They removed a little foam block from the first bend of her small intestine. She's on a bland diet and she is wearing a cone around her neck to keep her from running around or biting her stitches. I'm sure she'll be much happier when it comes off but it's for her own good.
I had an epiphany today. As some of you will remember, I was once writing a story on my blog about Tragedy and Joy and for some reason, the story just dried up....I never knew why. I had a lot of stuff going on and I thought that these things were distracting me from writing the story and that once things settled down that I would go back to it. But I never did--I've got all the time to do it now and I'm just cmpletely dry.
And I was thinking about it and I remembered that when I first began the story I was taking a new medication for attention defecit disorder. I remember wondering at the time if the medicine had anything to do with me being able to write this story because I have never had any luck writing fiction before.
I was always confused in general as to whether the medicine was having much of an effect on me in any way, I thought it was but I wasn't sure....and it made me sick. I would become very nauseated after taking it and I lost about 10 or 15 pounds. It made me feel groggy too and I always took it in the evening at work, if I took it earlier I might fall asleep, but if I took it at work, I couldn't fall asleep because I was at work. I stopped taking it on my days off because I I didn't want to waste my days off sleeping.
I finally had some vacation days and stopped taking it altogether and this is when I started having trouble at my job again and one thing led to another as you all know. And well, everything worked out for the best but looking back, I now realize that the medicine was having a more positive effect on me than I realized.
It's a strange feeling to take medicine and find out about dormant talents that you have which disappear when you stop taking the medicine. Or a potential that you only have when you are medicated. It poses some interesting questions about what constitutes our thoughts or our personalities etc.... Being a person who it actually is happening to instead of just reading about it, I have to say that I don't really care as long as I feel okay but it is still unsettling. Anyway, just thought I'd throw that out.
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
(I mean me...not you!)
Sorry, I haven't been around lately. I just can't think of anything interesting to write about for some reason. I'm doing fine but I just don't seem to have anything on my mind that would be interesting enough to post about.
I guess I could post about my cat...she's going to die. She probably has a bowel obstruction and needs surgery. I had her in the hospital and they sent her home and told me that she seemed fine, but she's not and I can't afford anymore. I've already spent about $900 that I don't even have. But see, that isn't interesting enough to post about.
Well, hopefully I will get more interesting soon and think of something that wouldn't bore everyone to tears. But I will stop by your blogs soon....Really!....I'll stop being neglectful about that at least.
Tuesday, January 8, 2008
(I can't believe I'm posting about this!)
I've never been a Britney fan. I'm not into her genre. As a matter of fact, have some lack of respect for the genre, but I'm big enough to admit that she was a helluva performer. It wasn't only her dancing ability or her team of image consultants or her fabulous pre-pregnancies figure that made her so famous and shot her to the top. It was her 'star quality'. You either have it or you don't. It can't be bought, it can't be learned, it just is....and she just oozed it.
Of course, there aren't too many people by now who don't realize that there is something terribly wrong with Britney. There are still people who still persist on saying that she is doing the things that she does because she has no class and she's been spoiled by her money. But many people now realize that it is much more than that. Her behavior can't leave much doubt to those who are generous enough to see.
It all started when she shaved her head. The tabloids howled in trimph to see Britney going down. If she was hounded by the paparazzi before, now she was devoured. But anyone who has ever dealt with mental illness knew, it was more than that. Britney's ordeals show a lot about the general publics attitude about mental illness. Apparently, they don't believe it exists.
The legal definition of insanity pends on whether you knew what you were doing or not. Apparently, the idea is if you can string a sentence together or are able to make any kind of sensible action, then you know what you are doing. If you could be considered to be crazy at all, you would be crazy like a fox. Many people seem to think of Britney this way and I suppose I am identifying with her because in many ways, the attitudes that people have towards her are similar to the attitudes that people had towards me when I was younger.
Though I've never shaved my head, I relate to Britney because I used to do things to shock other people when I was very young. I did it because I was angry. When you are having an episode your emotions are all out of proportion to what is actually happening. I have always been overly-sensitive and sometimes it reached the level of paranoia. Shocking people was my way of getting back, or showing them that I didn't really care what they thought of me. It was also a way of controlling a situation, I had control over how they felt about me, I may be making them dislike me but it was on my terms.
And then there was her marriage to Kevin Federline. Britney lost her head for Kevin Federline, someone who seemed beneath her, I don't mean financially...everyone is beneath her financially, I mean as far as her deserving someone who has respect for her and has her best interests in mind. But Kevin 'pimped' Britney. Why did she let him? What demon is driving her?
Britney has a certain Marilyn Monroe quality. Remember the headlines when Marilyn died...The most popular girl in America died alone on a Saturday night. Gloria Steinman wrote a great book about Marilyn Monroe that I believe eventually came to BE popular opinion. Which is that Marilyn Monroe felt that no-one cared about her, they only loved her image. She spent her life trying to find someone who loved who she was on the inside, someone who loved Norma Jean, not Marilyn Monroe. I believe that this is what Britney thought she was getting when she met K-Fed. Someone who saw Britney, the little girl from Louisiana, not Britney...pop idol.
And he probably did see her for what she was, but what he saw was her vulnerability and her giving nature and her insecurity. She was his mark, not his love...and Britney..she just didn't see it. Is Britney stupid like people say?
I've always noticed that you can tell a lot about people by how they view the world. A thief thinks everyone is going to steal from them, a liar thinks everyone is lying...etc...etc. Following this theory, what does Britney being snowed by K-fed say about her? Well, probably that she never expected to be treated this way because she would never treat anyone this way. She never saw his opportunistic nature because she has a generous nature. I think that she 'Is that Innocent' actually. And I relate to this too.
Even the way that she acts now. Supposing her behavior is a cry for help? Why is she crying to the world? Does she think people will care? Because she would care? I don't know, I'm just speculating of course. But her behavior makes sense if you think about it in these terms.
I saw an article on Britney the other night. One of the few articles where they weren't gloating about how she has become a trainwreck, dancing on her grave. This was an article in which the author was speculating about Britney possibly having bipolar disorder, which is why I read it.
There was a place for comments afterwards and there were more than 200 comments. Many of them were of a forgiving nature...Britney became famous too young, it's the stress, it's her stage-mom etc.... Some were mean of course, (it's scary to know that people who say these things walk the earth!) But many of them appeared to be like me, they read the article because Bipolar Disorder was mentioned and they either had it, or had a family member with it.
None of these people had anything disparaging to say. over and over, comment after comment they said, "I've suspected for a long time that she was bipolar." A few said that they had a parent that was Bipolar and they recognized the look in Britney's eyes....that look of not being completely there, someone whose responses are driven by inexplicable things going on inside of them rather than what is going on outside of them......reality in other words. They were all very concerned for her. Mental illness is a bad mother-fucker!
I made a comment too. I talked about how I dread the day that we all wake up to see the headlines "Britney is Dead!" And just like Anna Nicole Smith, people will suddenly be so nice. There will be tributes to her and they will finally have a little bit of sympathy. They stopped slamming Anna Nicole after she was dead, probably to assuage their guilt. Yes guilt, because anyone with half a brainv knew that Anna Nicole's problems had more to do with the fact that she came from a low-class background. They understood it all along, but it was fun to rip her apart. Just like they apparently have so much fun ripping Britney apart and eating her heart.
I wish people would just leave her alone, like the guy/girl said. I wish people wouldn't be so arrogant that they thought that they could judge someone elses behavior based on their own reality. Mostly, I wish that society would 'get a clue'. For Britney's story symbolizes a lot of the sins of mankind, that we judge, we are self-righteous, that we can turn on someone at the first sign of weakness and that charity is only extended to those who are similar to us.
I think Britney has learned a lot about mankind through her ordeals. No wonder she's such a mess.
Friday, January 4, 2008
One of my lessons this last year has been that I have certain limitations that no amount of willpower will ever change. It's not easy to admit that you have a limitation because no-one really wants to have one. But the hardest part of all is that we live in a society that does not respect limitations.
If you don't believe me try a little experiment. Tell someone that you can't do something because of a condition that you have. Tell them that you can't sit in a chair for longer than an hour because you have a bad back, or tell them that you can't stay out late because if you don't have 8 hours sleep you can't function the next day. Or tell them....oh I don't know. You make it up. But the key is, it has to be something that they can't see. It has to be something that they have to take your word about, and it has to be something that the majority of people can do without any trouble.
Actually, I'll bet you don't even have to do the experiment. I'll bet you already know what will happen, don't you? People will think that you make excuses for yourself. People will think that if you really wanted to do it, you could. They won't say anything most of the time, but you can tell by reading their expressions what they are thinking. You can also read newspapers etc..and get a pretty good idea of the standing opinion on things like this.
My mom says that workaholism is an addiction and that it is an acceptable one in our culture. Think about this one. If someone were an alcoholic and spent all their time away from home, ignoring their family, they would be condemned for it. If a workaholic spends all their time away from home ignoring their family, they will be praised for it. I realize that being an alcoholic is not the same thing as being a workaholic and there are other factors involved in the reason why it is disapproved of but my point is, workaholism is not a particularly healthy way of being, yet it is highly approved of.
We live in a tough society where you are mostly judged by what you have and what your accomplishments are. There is little room for limitations, especially ones no-one can see but you. And if your limitations have caused you to not have much or have achieved much you are thought to be a loser. At least, that's how a lot of people think.
Does it really matter what people think? It depends. As long as you know who you are, it is still lonely, but you can live with it and in the end it doesn't matter. But as far as expecting empathy or any types of concessions, then yes it does matter. You are already at a disadvantage and no-one is going to level the playing field for you in any way and that's the way it is.
Am I saying that I expect concessions? No, I'm not. Through all of this, I still feel like I am lucky. I don't really want any life besides the one I have. Things could be better, but things could be worse too and I'm well aware of that.
But it's hard sometimes. My dad's birthday was Tuesday. We all go out to eat every year on his birthday and cousins, uncles etc...come too. I have something of a reputation with my family. As you can imagine, being bipolar, I have a spotty history and everyone knows it. They don't know why, and I'm not telling them, I'm not that close to them.
But when the conversation finally came around to the fact that I'm not working presently, it wasn't difficult for me to see what they thought of it. I understand that most people are ignorant on the topic of bipolar disorder and if they truly understood, they would not be as judgemental. I also know that even if I told them, they wouldn't understand. It's something that you have to have lived with to truly understand.
I forgive them, but it's still just....hard. I get tired of it. I get tired of people jumping to conclusions about me, conclusions that simply aren't true. I can handle it because I do have a support system but that's because I'm at home right now. When I worked, I didn't have one because it's just the nature of work that there aren't allowances made for my type of issues. And it's more than likely that that will be how it is again when I go back to work. And this makes things hard for very practical reasons.
I'm scared to go back to work and have it start all over again. It was hard. It's hard to keep going when you feel like shit. And you have to go in, no matter whether you feel well or not and people notice. And they talk and they scrutinize you. At my last job, I felt like I just couldn't win. Once I came under their scrutiny they just didn't let up.
Sometimes, I have a hard time with my energy levels. I just get so lethargic that it's an effort for me to do anything. They assumed that I was lazy when I got this way. When I got muddled up, they assumed that I just didn't care about my job. They made a lot of unfair assumptions and I forgive them, but it was traumatic....it's sort of driven me into a shell and made me dread having this ever happen to me again.
So, I have come to some conclusions. First of all, I think that I am always going to have trouble working full-time. I'm not lazy, I just can't maintain that level of functioning demanded, no matter how hard I try. I suppose if I ever have to work full-time again, then I'll just have to...but I don't think that I'll ever be the best employee.
I would really like to work from home. It takes energy to do a job, but for me, dealing with people when I'm not feeling well takes much more energy than just working does. I'm just not 'on' all the time. And people misconstrue it and there is nothing that I can do about it because that's just the way it is for me sometimes. It seems to me that if I worked at home and I didn't feel well, no-one would have to know. As long as I could drag myself to the computer and get the work done, it wouldn't matter if I was so lethargic that I didn't even feel like combing my hair. At least I wouldn't have to deal with people when I felt that way.
So here come the limitations again. I know what I want to do. I want to learn courtroom reporting. Only, I don't want to work as a courtreporter. I want to work with the deaf. I want to do captioning and teleconferences and conventions and attend school with people who are hearing impaired and give them verbatim transcripts of the lecture. I know that I've talked about learning sign language, but that was only because I had told myself that captioning was probably out of the question for me. But this is what I really want to do.
I've e-mailed the director of the program and explained my situation to her and asked her opinion. I told her that I think that I could learn to do this accurately, but that I'm afraid that I might have trouble being completely accurate all of the time. I told her that I know that this would make me unable to do courtroom reporting, but asked her if it would make me unable to do the Cart reporting as well?
It will be a bitter blow for me if she tells me that she thinks that due to my problems, it probably wouldn't be the field for me, but if she does, I guess I will just have to live with it. So, I'm awaiting her answer. Hope it's good news. If not, then I guess I will just have to accept my limitations.