Self-care, took a day off…

Hello to all!

Well I have some great news.  My dear daughter will be here in August to accompany me to my permanent disability hearing which I have waited two years for!  I’m not nervous but it is great timing that she happens to be in town and with her by my side the outcome won’t matter.  She is such a great support to me.

My therapist is also a great support to me.  I can email him in between visits with details of my good and bad days and he ciphers through them pointing out where my thinking needs tweaking and where my insights are good.  It’s great.  He has proven to be a very useful tool to aid me in my recovery as he has great knowledge of this condition.

Take today for instance; it was a pretty good day.  I slept in because I went to Mass last night.  The pups even slept in too which was a rare occurrence ha ha.  I’ve had four days to myself with my husband being at a car show so there has been a lot of time to pray, reflect, exercise and read at my leisure.  I woke up naturally around ten, and stayed in my jammies until noon, did some spiritual readings and listened to Elvis gospel music which I just love.

I had made plans yesterday to walk with a friend today after lunch so I knew eventually I would get dressed and do that but in the am wasn’t really feeling it and felt like canceling.  But she called me at 1230 all excited to go walking at Waller Park so I told her I would meet her in an hour and we walked at the beautiful park which was full of families, barbecues, and dogs.  It was slightly windy but I didn’t mind because it felt good to just get out and enjoy nature.  Afterwards we got frozen yogurt which was a rare treat!

I then had to decide if I was going to take the day off from seeing my dad at the care facility, which is harder on me than him I imagine as i am pretty used to seeing him every day.  I ended up taking the day off, going back home and didn’t feel guilty because with the wind it isn’t as nice as when it is just sunny and we are enjoying the gardens.

I went back home and cooked up some healthy food for dinner, walked a bit more and stretched and just enjoyed having the day off from caring for both my mom and dad.  I wasn’t stressed or anxious at all today which was  a nice change.

My husband came home all happy and tired from his long trip down south and now we are relaxing watching tv.

Tomorrow is a new day I am not worried about.  Today was good and that is all that matters right now….

I learned today that taking one day off from helping both my parents is a good way to recharge my batteries and is good self-care.  Being a caregiver and having this disorder means I need to be especially careful to not overdo it and reminds me that I need more days like this….

Pax

Victoria

 

 

 

 

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The tide feels like it is turning in my favor

After meeting with my therapist today I have more hope that I will do better in the future.  I have not been doing great, even not working, although this last week was pretty good minus getting hurt the other day.  I have blogged this and feel like I have lost a few followers sharing how I still have bad days when I feel very unwell.

I don’t mind losing followers if my blogs don’t resonate anymore.  When I was doing well I got lots of likes but now that I am struggling again not so…  I am just very honest how I am doing and will continue to blog even if no one reads my blogs or likes or comments on it.  I do this selfishly, it helps me to get it out.  And I like to think that my blogs do help others who are not doing so well too although they may be quiet on the comments.

This is a serious disorder.  I can’t even get life insurance easily because of it or it is very expensive my broker has told me recently.  This is nothing to joke about.  Having Schizoaffective Disorder means I can’t work outside the home, means stress is my worst enemy, means socially I feel like an outcast most of the time and so much more.

But I don’t give up the fight and today’s session meant more to me than a whole lot of talking with various people about nothing.  I believe my therapist gets me and my disorder which is great and was worth the wait recently to know if I will be able to see him or not.

Today was great because I came to terms with how God made me.  I am extremely sensitive and take criticism very negatively of any sort.  In the past I have seen this as a great defect but today my therapist helped me to realize something.  That it is because I am sensitive I am the glue that holds my family together.  I will try to remember how it was said.  Forgive me if I don’t share it perfectly but it went something like this…

Therapist: So you want to be less sensitive?

Me: Yes

Therapist: That would mean you would be have to be harder

Me: Then I don’t want to be less sensitive.  Inside I scream to myself that I don’t ever want to be harder like others who  don’t show compassion….

So I’m stuck and stuck I like today.  Because I am sensitive I help my folks a lot, I help my family, I help myself.  I happen to have a lot of time to myself and I really need it, to pray, to reflect, to veg out for a little while before I get busy with the business of helping my parents.

I also read part of a Buddhist book recently prior to my appointment that really made sense and goes along with what I learned from my therapist today.  All the craziness (or insert whatever you are that you don’t like about yourself) makes you who you are so don’t wish it away.

Instead I will embrace it.  And no longer feel bad when my sensitivity bothers me.  But it will take a while to get used to because I have hated it for so long.

I often laugh at myself.  Laugh or cry I say, I choose to laugh and not take anything too seriously even having this disorder.

Pax

Victoria

Won’t give up

I won’t give up [Jason Mraz]

This is my fight song [?]

Shake the disease [Depeche Mode]

Music helps me to cope and these three songs I listen to often because honestly having this disorder makes me want to give up at times.

Some days I am really good mentally but some days are still really hard mentally…  I can’t figure out what makes a good or bad day.  I exercise regularly and eat healthy most days, sleep enough, pray and use my coping skills.  But sometimes it just isn’t enough.  My mind is very unstable at times and I don’t know what to do next.

I am tired of starting new things to entertain myself and then quitting them when it gets too hard or I lose interest.  But yet I still love starting new things.  It gives me purpose and reason to keep going.  And keep going I go.  I wonder if my fractured mind will ever settle down and just be ok???

Lately I have been having some tough days and I just want to cry.  I did cry today.  No one will ever understand what it is like to be me so I will stop trying to explain it yet here I am blogging and trying to explain it.  Ah, the mind is a terrible thing to lose.  My dad suffers from dementia and when he remembers me and something simple like my dog’s names I just get so happy.

But what it is like to be me…so difficult to explain.  And soon I will go before the hearing and try to explain why I can’t work.  I am not nervous.  I will just be honest.  Work stresses me out, following instructions is difficult and even though I am at a loss some days what to do next, I know I am better off not working  I often enjoy my days when things are going well and when they aren’t I just veg out and surf the web or read a good book.

Today I went cruising with my husband in his 21 window vw bus.  It was fun.  We had an early dinner at a cheap Mexican place.  I was present for him enjoying just being in his company with his favorite hobby, Volkswagens.  I love him and he has stood by me through all of this for ten years now.  He notices when I am out of sorts and lets me do my thing so that is good that he is supportive like that.

My faith has been a comfort to me lately… I remember what it was like to not believe in God, such a sad existence.  But I believe in God now and pray to Him often for help to get through each day, to be the best daughter, wife, mother and friend that I can be.  He gives me strength often and for that I am grateful.

Pax

Victoria

Today was a good and bad day of sorts…

The day started off all right, went to my women’s aa meeting, spoke with a dear friend, ate healthy, got my sleep, got some resources to help my depressed mother, visited her and she was doing poorly, visited my dad who had a stroke in July and is in a care facility, got some good coffee, visited my son at work, and then it hit…

A panic or sadness attack of some sort.  I remembered later that I didn’t take my attivan in the morning because I have been doing so well.  I felt like I shouldn’t drive.  It crept up on me when I visited my son at work I was thought I was picking him up and was going to ask him to drive home because I was beginning to feel unwell but he had to work late and had secured a ride so I decided to go for a walk on a local trail.  I was praying the rosary and saw a bench in the shade.  So I sat for a while and waited for whatever it was to pass.  I was texting my daughter about my visit with my dad and didn’t want to bother her with how I was feeling but did share with her later.

I don’t really know what it was or why I don’t let people know when I am not doing so well at the time I am not doing well???  This confuses me, my disorder confuses me, my moments that can last up to a couple of hours confuses me.

I don’t see my therapist until a week and a half and will surely share with him this day.  I do have lots of support.  I talked to my aa sponsor soon after I finally drove home which helped.  I made a nice dinner for my husband and hung out with him for the evening then just finished a relaxing hot bath.  I didn’t work out today and that’s ok on days like this.  I know when I feel this way that even a workout won’t help me feel better.

I guess the best way to describe it is as being mentally unwell.  I am under a lot of stress with caring for my parents so I need to be sure to take my meds every day.  My psychiatrist told me I only had to take the attivan as needed.  I guess I need it!  Ha ha.  If that was all that it was then that’s good news.  I am glad I didn’t drive when I felt that way.  I guess there is a lot to be grateful for!

Hoping for a better day tomorrow, I am going shopping with my mom so that will be good for both of us.

Pax

Victoria

Starting again with a new therapist can be daunting…

Explain the progression of the disorder, timeframes, feelings, observations, connections, relationships, feelings etc..

My old therapist was just someone that I connected with so well that it was hard to let her go but the distance was too much and my insurance didn’t cover her so this is not only right down the street but also is covered.  He is also very experienced with treating individuals with Schizophrenia so he has a world of knowledge one doesn’t find in other therapists.  His therapy will be brief where with my other it was more like someone I could just talk to.  I actually have to come up with some goals which I am terrible at.

I mean what are goals really? Hopeful desires that may or may not come to pass?  Yearnings to be different?  Desire to change my thinking which is so set in place it seems impossible.  But he has hope so perhaps I will be lofty with my goals.

How do these sound?

To not have to take so much anti-anxiety medicine, to no longer have days when I feel bad, to not suffer so much from the negative symptoms of this disorder.  To avoid the highs and lows and not allow others to guide my good or bad days.  To not be so sensitive…those are just a few.

Bring on the healing Geoff!  Let’s do it!

Pax

Victoria

 

 

i’MPOSSIBLE Project book pre-order available

I am proud to say I am a part of this book and after reading it can highly recommend it to anyone with a disorder, a loved one or anyone interested in mental health.  Josh Rivedal has done an excellent job putting this book together and his passion for finding people with compelling stories shines on every page.  See pre-order details below.

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Overview

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Pax

Victoria