Sunday, March 29, 2009

Passionate Blogger Award.

Mike Golch received this award and some true and wonderful words from Compassionate blogger (the link is on Mike's site). Thank you, Mike, for giving it to me (it is 'Good Stuff's first award!) as I do feel a passion for blogging (and won't put ads on my site, it's to express myself). I feel very blessed to have blog friends like you and I give this award to my followers on both sites (Tracy - you are passionate twice!) and those that have commented on my site (Raine's AfterMath). It's a pleasure to reside in cyberspace with you and be blessed by your passion for documenting your days and your writings.

Who's Crazy Now?!!! (a Rant.)

So the whole looking-for-a-new-psychiatrist thing has taken a turn for the worse.

Having to speak to the most inane, insensitive, STUPID secretaries that seem to enjoy dangling your life in their hands is enough to make anyone either quit the search or have to don armor just to pick up the phone and try to make a simple appointment.

It SHOULD be simple. Make an appointment. Go to appointment. Have yer heart ripped out.

I had gotten the list from my insurance, I had consulted my primary care physician and I have abided by all the rules, crossed my t's and obeyed the q's.

Only to have conversations that include statements like "We don't deal with psychotic people (I mentioned I was Bipolar I and tried to briefly explain what that meant and tried to explain that my last psychosis was 15 years ago (which seems like a KEY POINT). I suspect They deal with psychotic people all the time and I even asked her what they do with them when they run across them, because her responses MADE ME FEEL PUNCHY).

It's a counseling center located inSIDE the local mental hospital, which frankly already makes me nervous. Some part of me is not trusting, not convinced that they are not laying in wait to get me in there on a more permanent basis. I know, I know, that sounds silly and unreasonable but few have ever accused me of being otherwise.

So I asked to make an appointment with one of the doctors and Secretary says no he is not taking patients. Not to be daunted, I had a second name, for the same counseling center (I only had two 'approved' names from my doctor out of a list of 20 or so, and I wasn't about to be hornswaggled into accepting just any old psychiatrist. No, I want the best as I think highly of my primary care physician who went to the trouble of recommending them and if I'm going to leave the County after 15 years I d*mn well want good care!!!!)

Anyway, secretary says she can make an appointment with this second person but it will be a couple of months out (which I don't mind whatsoever, what's a few more months of being bled dry by the County as it will take them a while to copy my ENOURmous chart and get it there anyway, I know the b*st*rds.) and wouldn't I prefer a pdoc that I can get a sooner appointment with. Like it's some kind of switch a roo, like wouldn't you want someone you've never heard of, have your life in their hands type of thing all because I, Secretary, don't want to schedule you out 2 months even though you've expressed it's not a problem.

No I don't want the first available. I want someone good. As Suze Orman says, do what is Right, not what is Easy. I am upset that I am being 'handed' (more like fighting for) a psych like Sears sells power tools (and everthing else, I know I worked in the Men's Department!) with bait-and-switch tactics and no care for the effect on the consumer. I am so angry.

Oh, she tried hard. She said ALL their psychs could deal with Bipolar, and this particular psych was their only woman, and they liked to reserve her for the under-30 set. Which I would have understood (I'm really not unreasonable, and for the record I AM IN REALITY, d*mn it!), but Secretary did not put her foot down and say I could not have an appointment with her, only that again normally they 'reserved her' (whose They, and that's weird) for adolescents and she, Secretary, wanted to make me a SOONER appointment.

Which is so odd, because after the conversation she took ALL my information, asked HORRIBLY INVASIVE questions for a person that I don't know and would never want to - COMBATTED me and cut me off on those questions before I could even explain, not caring anyway what I was saying (which really was the most galling part of it) and was incredibly ignorant of mental health issues yet portended such importance and knowledge (making her triply ignorant, even Husband said so) and then said "We will look up your hospitalizations and GET BACK TO YOU. (!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

That's fine if that's how they treat everybody else. But I am thinking that she is afraid that I am psychotic and will kill her only precious female psych and must evaluate me and my history. That's the impression that I get. I will be pleasantly (??) surprised if she does call back. Really.

I am thinking that she will not call back, until I call next week and ask to speak to the manager, or get Husband to call (which I think I should do all along, as I have become incapable of dealing with these people anymore), or ask my primary care physician's wonderful, NOT-STUPID, gifted, lovely assistant to call and ask them what the deal-e-o if they actually don't call back.

I'm not enlarging the situation, mountains really are mountains (no molehills) and I'm thinking of going to a nearby county or an unauthorized person (on the list but not loved by my doctor) across the street from said mental hospital because this place is a Mickey-Mouse Operation.

On another note it's only Saturday, so it may not be a big deal but it's 4:36a.m. and I haven't gone to bed yet. Yeah. The puppy will be up at 5:30 for pee-peeing. What's the use of going to bed. I'm so wired.

Other than that, I know I'm lucky. I've got insurance and so many don't and I know that I am blessed incredibly to have it.

The County has made it clear that I have to 'move out' of the program, and they made so many promises that they can no longer keep I have to (read: forced) to go through this process and you think, ok, I will make phone calls today, I will make contact with these people and they are awful to you.

I can't imagine what they see, and I am fortunate because I understand that They don't know me, They are just performing a job. But this is my job too, taking care of myself. This is what I do. And apparently I'm a little ineffective at it at the moment.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The cake didn't turn out.

Thank you to all my commenters on the last couple of posts.

I asked my baking people why my angel food cake didn't turn out fluffy and tall, and we think it was the store-bought egg whites. They said the already separated egg whites have preservatives, etc., and that must be why it didn't whip up merigue-ie and puffy and be a nice big batter to pour into the pan.

Ah. Live and learn.

I didn't take it to my vet. I'm going to send them a heartfelt card and write it myself.

On to the other things. My shift key is acting as though it doesn't want to work. Exciting no? I have to hit it very hard in the right place Sometimes to make it work. Perhaps it is OVERworked, lil shift key, my pet?

I can't be still. And yet I have not exercised in weeks. I feel so run-down and tired, I take naps a lot because I think I'm sick.

I'm doing the baking thing and even though today is my wedding Anniversary, I am still going.

Husband and I went out to eat last night and we'll watch a movie from Walmart on Saturday. We've been married four years.:)

Even though cake was not 'fluffy' I tried it this morning - it tasted good. So here's to not perfect being just fine.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Angel food cake for angels.

My vet hospital made a donation to the the county SPCA in Mia's name and I am so touched by this.

I don't have much to give, so I am baking an angel food cake for them to take to the new puppy's booster shot appointment on Tuesday. They also sent me a heartfelt card expressing sympathy for our loss. They really are caring people and its wonderful to be associated with them.

I got to buy an angel food cake pan yesterday. I've made angel food cake in baking class. It uses a lot of egg whites, which you can buy straight from the store now, that way you don't waste all the yolks (I thought that was a cool innovation).

It's because of the baking class that I thought to make a cake. I can't wait to tell my supervisor and her Mom (who helps out) at the bakery opportunity about it. I know that will make them happy.

I'm doing the baking thing again!:)

I couldn't decide if I should put this on 'Adventures' or 'The Good Stuff' but since 'Adventures' chronicles my life more closely, I will spread the news on here.

I am doing the baking project again!

This is a six-month program started by a mental health consumer herself (that means she has a mental illness), who has a young son AND is now taking classes for her second master's degree in college! (Wow! A real go-getter, hunh! And I can still relate to her because she said there was a time when she hardly left her house and she would tell her doctors at doctor appointments that she looked forward to seeing them because it got her out of the house, and they said 'You've got to get a life!' Yeah, I can sooo relate to that.:)

This person running the program also has a heart of gold and is a wonderful role-model to me. She called me last week, and was 'interviewing' me on the phone (because I interviewed and was doing the project for several months before I couldn't take it anymore due to someone REALLY getting on my nerves).

She reminded me that there are always people that are difficult to get along with, especially in the real world (oh don't I know it) to which I assured her that no matter how difficult it got, I wasn't going to quit again (I just couldn't imagine anyone as annoying as the person I left for, seriously). She also told me that the goal of the program is getting a job at the end of the six months.

So I am preparing myself mentally for that, because I am thinking I could work in a grocery store in the baking department. I think that might be cool.

I have no idea what's going on with the Ebay thing with Drop-in, which was supposed to raise money for them and eventually provide me with a job, because they would find some way to pay me for starting and working on the Ebay program for them. It may just be going slowly but I am still doing the baking thing because it is a Wonderful Opportunity and you never know how things are going to go.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Recession is the mother of invention.

Please see here for an article from the NY Times about people using their entepreneurial spirit to create jobs for themselves. They are making business plans rather than sending out resumes and experts say it is good for our economy.

"...many people will focus on serving immediate needs for individuals and
“It’s a very painful thing,” he said of the pressure people
to find new ways to make money. “But it’s a healthy thing.” "
This sort of thing fascinates me. I'd love to have the energy and the stamina to head my own business. That is why Ebay is the closest thing like it to me.

Have a Great Saturday.:)

Friday, March 13, 2009

Spring will be coming.

About a week to go and Spring will be here. A beautiful time of year.

My favorite flower, the daffodil, is just on the cusp of blooming here. I didn't even know that it's other name is 'Easter Lily' which makes perfect sense. One of my friends recently told me that.

Still doing okay, here in the Jungle.

I spent the morning trying to find a new psychiatrist, since the County program I have been involved in for the past 14 years is essentially pushing me out, because of the tightening of resources.

This is a process, connecting with the right people, and I am proud that I haven't gotten mad or flipped out, I am just going with the flow and trying to connect all the dots and get it done, even though it will take a while to be done, I think.

correction: An Easter Lily is a white flower that, well...looks like a lily and nothing like a daffodil.:)

A little update for now. Have a good day all.:)

Thursday, March 5, 2009


I am writing to say that I feel much better than the previous post. I have switched to something new, for the moment, and my mood (and life) looks improved.

Thank you so much for your comments on the last post. I take them to heart and I really appreciate them!:):)

Today I went to the Drop-In Center and set up an account on Ebay so that we can sell books for the center. Our Executive Director has tons of books that she is donating to the center so that we can sell them and fundraise. Yaay!

I am doing this as a volunteer position right now, but I may get paid in the future. It's a good learning experience, as I will learn to do TurboLister. You may recall or see on my list of things I wanna do that being a seller is El Top O' the List!!

So I spent a good part of the day at the Drop-In Center. And while I still feel funny sometimes because there is someone there that I can feel stabbing me with words behind my back, it is only one person and is probably good for me. Can you believe I would say that! I don't know what's wrong with her but it's her, not me. And I'm okay with it right now.

I also met these two darling young women who go to ARC, Association for Retarded Citizens, and they so brightened my day, just by being themselves. I just loved being around them, they were so sweet and friendly.

My Mom always said I would work well with retarded citizens, or developmentally challenged is a more PC term, as they are sweet and I am too (blush). But to work with them would probably take a degree. Maybe I could look into volunteering.

So things are looking up and I wanted to share.:)

I had other good thoughts too. I watched a very gripping story on PBS (limited basic cable will make you do such things!:) called "A Walk to Beautiful" about the incredible amount of young girls/young women in Africa who have given birth at young ages and then developed fistulas, or tears that cause them to urinate or worse constantly. This causes them to become ostrasized and pariahs in their villages sometimes, devastatingly for the rest of their lives.

This was a wonderful, touching story of the incredible journey of several women to get to a special hospital made just for them and their recovery from this terrible, widespread ailment.

I was just gripped by the beauty of these women, and their incredible courage in the face of being treated awfully, by being betrayed by their bodies - or feeling that way - and for how difficult it was to have this illness in their culture. Not only was the problem physical it was vastly psychological.

You can imagine that I related to that.

So it is with clarification that I state about my earlier post 'I'm glad to be an American Woman' - oh I so am. No where on this Earth could a woman have so many freedoms and pleasure to be herself except in many of our Western countries.

At the same time, I am proud to just plain be a woman, when women like these are my co-patriots of the Earth.

I was outside today, watching the dogs do their thing, and I heard a bird above in the trees make loud noises. I looked up. There is a whole world up there, and out there, a Lord that watches and enters his Hands into the mix and I was more at peace, because I realized the world was bigger and it was A GOOD THING. Can't explain it quite right.

I am finally recovering from the trauma, I think, of the anxiety that befell me after the Lithium toxicity last year - which was almost exactly one year ago next week. Actually, I bounced back pretty fast in many ways, physically certainly.

Thank you again, dear Friends, for your comments on the last few posts. I am so blessed to be aware of your presence on the web, I think of you and even pray sometimes for your needs.:)

So you see, Tart doesn't always write bad things on her blog.:)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

'You can't live a life without impact.'

This is one of the messages of the new book 'Handle With Care' by Jodi Picoult. I'm not selling/advocating the book, I am really interested in this thought.

As much as I have tried to personally implode into my own little world I hope that I make a good impact on the world and there is still hope that Iwill get better and I will leave my house and live a more productive life one of these days. Besides my blog, I try mostly during the day to live and not bother anyone. I wanted to help Drop-in center but my efforts seem to not have made much impact there, and I guess that's to be expected. Nothing comes easily.

Simply put: I am grateful for the impact of the lives of the bloggers and people I have met through this blog. Your lives impact me.

Mixed vegetable.

I think I am in a mixed state that is leaning more to the depressive side. I have tried to complete things today, getting a few appointments set, taking care of some things on the phone and really feel like I have not got much done. I am hungrier than usual today too, it's weird.

I also decided to listen to these Tony Robbins CD's that my Dad left me. I had thought about selling them on Ebay but then I decided that I actually needed to listen to them.

So tired and good for nothing. My house overwhelms me and I need to do something about it. My inlaws hinted at coming to visit us and it fills me with panic. I have managed to keep most of 'the critical eye' out of my house but soon will come the day when it can't be held back.

I'm embarrassed but I want to either die Or just go back to bed.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Simple definition of Bipolar I Disorder.

Bipolar I Disorder is an illness with symptoms thought to be caused by an imbalance of brain chemicals.

People who have Bipolar I Disorder tend to experience extreme mood swings, along with other specific symptoms and behaviors.

These mood swings, or "episodes," can take three forms: manic, depressive, or mixed episodes.

Common symptoms of a manic episode are: feeling extremely happy, being very irritable and anxious, talking too fast and too much, and having more energy and needing less sleep than usual.

Common symptoms of a depressive episode include: feelings of overwhelming sadness or emptiness, low energy, a loss of interest in things, trouble concentrating, changes in sleep or appetite, and thoughts of dying or suicide.

A mixed episode includes symptoms that are both manic and depressive.
Source-- this from an information sheet about Abilify, in my 'People' magazine.