Thursday, January 3, 2019

This Year's Theme: Acceptance

I've never done well with new year's resolutions. I don't think I have ever even made a serious attempt to make any. I think a lot about it. I think a lot about a lot of things. I think thinking is probably my number one hobby if I am to be honest. Hahaha. But, I have never in my recollection, made resolutions on January 1st that require me to give up something, or change myself into something new for a new year. It's just not my style.

Goal setting, however... that is different. I know some people might see them as the same things with different names,  but to me they are not. Resolutions are, within this context, something to rid of, or banish. It feels like it's almost a punishment. Like, I'm gonna somehow be different come January 1st. December 31st, cake and alcohol, but January 1st it's all kale and smoothies. "I'm getting serious in 2019", I hear people say. It's straight from one extreme to another, usually without a long term plan of sustainability. Just the end goal in mind. People usually know what they want, and they have a kind of clue how to achieve it short term, but not on hard days, or days when things aren't following the plan, or all kinds of other obstacles.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Mitigating Negative Moods

Today I woke up to a dreary sky with bright leaves of fall scooting along the sidewalks and streets. Humid and cool. I felt unsettled from the moment I woke up. A feeling of pressure and slight heaviness that sets the day apart from one that I know is going to be a positive one. I can't always slice it all up right away. Am I sick? Is it a migraine? Am I hurt? Am I having one of those physically exhaustive days? What is going on? Without the answer I just move on. The day won't wait for one and it's never that clear right away.

So, I did. As the morning went on what did answer rather quickly was a rising sense of frustration and anger. I had no patience for anything. I felt a hair trigger away from a catastrophic meltdown toward anyone who crossed certain lines with me. Not just anyone or any argument, but certain people with certain topics mostly. I felt overwhelmed with emotion that threatened to seize my inner workings of my mind into slow motion. With my mood and limbs heavy the day is one to be survived more than tackled, or accomplished.

On these days I have to remember that I have been here and I will be here again, but each and every time I get past this mood. It is just a mood. It is just temporary. This is depression dressed as anger. It's visiting today, but it won't stay. It feels like this is forever. I feel like I have to react to all the feelings, because they are in my face taunting me. They threaten my ego. They tell me lies about my life and others in it. My nervous system feels on the edge of fight or flight and I am ready to fight,  so I'm looking for the the person, or situation who wants to trip that trigger. Of course I'm not looking on a conscious level. There's nothing I can do to change the way I feel. It's just here. Something to be mitigated and contended with.

When I was younger and I would have these strong emotional days I'd wonder two things. I'd wonder what was wrong with me that I had such a strong reaction to seemingly nothing, or possibly something, such as stress, or some other unknown and two; when was I going to be able to mature enough to where I would no longer feel this way?

Monday, October 22, 2018

Who is Turning Seventeen?!

I know it's been a minute since I have blogged. It's been even longer since I've written a personal, from the heart, rambling post. Time always has a way of slipping by. I intend to get over here all the time to write about this or that, but something else always comes up.

I've noticed that blogging in this kind of sense isn't as popular anymore. Most people are using YouTube for this type of thing and reserving blogs for business. That has made me wonder if I should keep writing. I have thought about vlogging, but it's just not the same to me. I don't love being on camera. Speaking doesn't allow me the creative room that writing does. It does allow more available time, I would think, but that is likely the only positive I can think of for that platform. So, for now I will write as time allows.

This week is going to be busy with a lot of big things. I have IEP meetings for both of the boys, or should I say "young men"! Ha ha. They are both in high school now. I am still homeschooling Beans, but he still gets speech services through the school district.

Bubby is a junior now and his meeting will be highly focused on transitioning out of high school and into some kind of vocational school, or program. He has stood firm in that he doesn't want to attend anymore schooling after high school, so I guess maybe it will be a program? They do have several around here that he can get started doing soon. It's an exciting and anxious time for me. I feel so nervous about helping him to make decisions. It feels like the beginning of school again, I guess. I used to feel so intimidated by the school administrators and think that it all seemed so scary and permanent. I realized a couple years ago that it wasn't as hard as I was making it out to be, and that I had all kinds of options for schooling if one didn't work out. I was stressing too hard over nothing. Now I have that part figured out, here comes another new chapter that feels scary. Guess that's how it goes.

Bubby will also be turning 17 Friday! He was so little when I began this blog. I can't believe he's already going to be 17.

Of course it's fall again.

Monday, August 27, 2018

Local Woman Knows Everything About Straws and Disabilities [SATIRE]

Florida- Local resident Karen Smith cares about sea turtles and she wants you to, too. That's why she makes it a point to leave negative comments under any Facebook posts that discuss leniency when it comes to straw bans. She wants you to know that she is environmentally conscious at all costs.

"I mean, how can people be so selfish!" she exclaims as she stuffs Gogurt pouches and Lunchables into her kids' lunch bags. "Ever since I saw that one article about those poor, poor sea turtles I knew that I had to do something. I'm a busy mom, but we all have to sacrifice for the sake of them turtles," she says as she finishes her busy morning routine of wiping down the counter with disinfecting wipes.

When asked about considering the needs of the disabled population and their use of straws Karen wasn't hearing it. "I know disabled people! I have worked with them and my cousin is disabled. They don't have to have straws. If they do they can use a reusable straw that can be carried with them. It's not like they don't already have huge bags of items they carry with them anyway. What's one more small thing to carry? Maybe they can bring their own drink in a special cup that's washable? Or maybe they don't need to go to those places if they can't use them the way I do in a sea turtle friendly way.  I feel like right now the biggest impact on the environment is disposable straws, and it's my job to make sure everyone I know knows I don't use them, or condone the use of them. I really feel like I am doing something important here. This is big work monitoring everyone like this. I don't want to hear their excuses. I already know everything I need to know."

This post is intended to be satire and not to be taken seriously. Please don't leave angry comments about how Karen is misguided. Of course she is, that's why I wrote a sarcastic article poking fun at her.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

You Again? #Depression

Depression is such an interesting phenomenon, isn't it?

It has so many variables from person to person. There's not just one type, is there? No. There's literally hundreds that manifests in so many different ways within it's hosts. Some stays are for days, some are for weeks, months, or even decades. Some drag it's host to the ground and keep them there for long periods at a time, others are able to walk around, but with a feeling of a heavy burden weighing them down with each laborious step.

I do write a lot about depression. I suffer from my own type. I speak from my own experience from my own struggle with illness, because this is how I cope. Maybe your experience won't match mine at all. That's okay. With the unique way my brain is wired neurologically I have come to expect it likely won't. I'll write about it anyway, and possibly someone might see bits of themselves within these words and at least know they're not the only one experiencing them.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Why Hobbies are Valuable

I like to write.

If I could I'd write everyday.  I do inside my head. I compose blog entries and think up ideas for books I'll never write all day long. I wash the dishes, and vacuum the floors to stories untold that flash inside of my mind's eye disappearing before I can gather my thoughts into buckets of coherence in order to pour them out onto pages to share with others. It's not the collecting, but the holding that is the problem. As the daily tasks tick by the buckets leak my ideas, and by the time I slide into place before my computer screen the blinking cursor is taunting me. Blink.....Blink....Blink.....  A blank screen awaits my words, but I only remember quarter entries and half ideas. When I try to put them back together again it's like trying to put a puzzle together starting from the middle. It's difficult and I often can't find the words, so I end up moving onto to something else, usually going to bed.

So, many, or maybe I should say most days I don't write anything. I don't necessarily like it this way,  and I always think I'll do better the next day, and then I don't. I simply don't have time in the daily schedule to stop and write every time inspiration strikes, or a quiet moment to concentrate even if I did get a moment of downtime. Then I question how much it matters. How much does blogging really matter in the grand scheme of anything, really? I mean, I don't get paid to write. It's just something I like to do that is like a hobby for me and let's me connect with others. (And, no this isn't a solicitation for a paid blogging position, because there's always a catch in there where have to sell something that I feel will make me come across as less than genuine to my readers, so I'm not interested in that sort if thing.) Do these words matter that I am typing right now? Are there better, more productive ways to spend my time than this?

I guess there really isn't any solid answers to any of those questions, because they are a matter of perception. Maybe for some it does seem like a waste of my time to put so much effort into something I will likely never see any monetary gain from. I don't find that everything valuable in life can be measured by monetary value, though. Well being has a heavy value in my life, which carries with it many different facets. Mental health is a huge chunk of that. When I speak of feeling well I can be referring to many different feelings, both on a physical level and on a more emotional level.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

What If-ing Autistic Kids

If you're a person that has ever gone into therapy for any kind of anxiety issues you know at least a little bit about what catastrophizing is. If not, it's basically taking a worse case scenario of in an imagined situation, and running with it. The foundation for the situation may be real. Something like maybe your boss emailed wanting to see you in their office this afternoon. But if you have anxiety issues you might then begin to "just know" they're going to reprimand you, fire you, yell at you about last week's performance, and so on.... That would be catastrophizing. It's actually fairly common among most people, I would think, and most of us can probably get this kind of irrational thinking under control before it interrupts our lives to a serious degree. We recognize that we're worrying over something we can't control,  and from such a negative point of view that it's a piss poor time to spend our emotional energy, so we redirect our thoughts, and continue on with our day. Unless, of course, one cannot,  then maybe we might decide to see a professional to help us learn to do so.

But what happens when we encounter catastrophizing coming from others around us? What if, instead of this being unhealthy it's actually considered the norm in certain environments?  Would you recognize it for what it is? Or would you go with the social convention that has taken place in this circle of people? What would you think about an environment that not only encouraged, but saw no other way but to plan for the absolute worst case scenario?

Let me then introduce you to what it is like to be a parent of an autistic child.

Monday, June 25, 2018

Altering My Time Spent

I've never been much of a T.V.  watcher. I do like a few shows, but in my spare moments as brief as they come and go, I like to do rather than just be. This can mean a variety of activities, but what it isn't is me sitting idle for very long. I literally can't. So, it goes without saying I'm not a Netflix binger.

Yet, I often find myself wasting my time idling away the minutes, because I only have maybe 10 here or 5 there to spare. Not enough to begin a new project, but I will need to do a new thing or be a new place in a few minutes. It's a constant low level of frustration for me, to be honest. I am a project planner and finisher, well inside my head I am. In reality I am a frayed mother, a caregiver with chronic illness who is often burning the candle at both ends, but trying to learn to only burn it at one, even if it's a hard process to learn. It goes against the mindset of my constantly busy goal setting brain. My perfectionist self would have me living in a white glove house, perfect manicure, never missing a workout, volunteering for charities, and more. I don't know who that person is, but I make a to-do list for her every day. Hahaha.

I'm finding these few minute gaps in my day to be the most challenging to fill, as odd as it seems. I used to really enjoy spending a few minutes here and there throughout the day checking in on social media. I'd pop in, chat with friends, post a little and be on my way. Now it's a litany of angry political posts, and clickbait articles with mean comments underneath. So, I scroll and I scroll hoping to find

Sunday, June 10, 2018

The Only Way Out is Through

In my last post I talked about migraines, and perceiving life differently. That was about two weeks ago now. In the interim I did see the doctor who has referred me to a neurologist, but as many of us know.... this can take a minute. In the meantime, she wanted to see how I would do on a medication that I have tried before, but possibly this time at a higher dose.

The answer is groggy, irritable and nauseated. Ugh.

Though, I am holding out hope that these side effects might let up a bit after some time passes as often happens with medications. It's too early to know yet if it's helping or not, but it does seem to be at least a little. With the increasing frequency of migraines along with the level of interruption it's bringing to my life even a little relief is welcome.

As I also mentioned in the last post, I am also working toward greater well being and mental health in general. In particular, taking more responsibility for my own well being by being more honest with myself on how effectively I am approaching daunting tasks in my life. As I set out to do this, to apply the ideas I spoke about in the last post I realized something big.

It was hard.

Yeah, I know Captain Obvious, right? Of course making changes to one's behavior is hard. But no, I mean it was hard.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Experiencing a Shift in Perception #SelfAwareness #MentalHealth

Yesterday was a rough day. It began with a migraine as soon as I woke up that by afternoon morphed into the worst one I have ever had in my entire life. That is saying something since I have chronic migraines.

I found myself laying on the couch with a pillow resting over most of my head to provide a blocker for light, and some pressure for my forehead. With nausea and pain building it's way into a vortex of spinning hell, despite trying all meds I had at my disposal I was reduced to laying still as a stone. This is the kind of sickness that renders a person unable to breathe without increasing one's pain. There's nothing to do but lay there and deal. I couldn't even watch TV, and so much of my energy was going toward not vomiting that it was a serious challenge.

There's something kind of dismally sweet about not being able to do any activity besides think for hours on end. When you're laying in a puddle of pain and illness for hours there is nothing else to separate you from your thoughts. Not that I am one to run away from my inner thoughts, but it's entirely different for me when there is nothing to distract my mind from wandering in every which direction it wants. At least for me, these are the times that my inner world becomes exceptionally vivid with thoughts of the past dancing across my mind's eye, and thoughts of the present as well. I suppose due to the heaviness of my emotional state those thoughts aren't always the most pleasant, or the most happy. Small issues that nudge me during usual mind frames that would get pushed away come at me full color with no escape. As I laid there in misery I realized a lot of hard truths that I had been avoiding.

In this place I met some of my fears