Phoenix Fights

Fighting the FEAR, depression and BDP on a daily basis AND making my own bread. Bring it on 2016….


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YOUR FRIEND’S IN THE NORTH

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So.

I made it ūüôā

It wasn’t easy. ¬†Of course it wasn’t. ¬†I am a drama magnet, so anything that could go wrong went wrong, to the extent that post move I actually got embroiled in some legal action (from which I ended up the beneficiary¬†– fuck you, unprofessional, lying, scaremongering biatches from HELL!), but gradually, gradually, things are getting better.

I have nice neighbours, a couple of friends nearby, am closer (but not too close) to family and don’t go to bed in mortal terror of what my dreams might bring. ¬†Yes I have bills to pay (I am NOT on benefits. ¬†Yet. ¬†But hopefully never again), there things to buy and do for/to my new home, so I need some work so I can carve out a decent life for myself.

And of course I still have the darkest of dark nights (and days) of the soul with no real means of support; mental health is not something that is a high priority in Stark Land. ¬†If I’m lucky and can prove I’m on the verge of suicide, I may, just may get a prescription for Sertraline, a disapproving frown and a ‘Pull yourself together woman!’ admonishment from my new GP, and of course I have no intention of telling anyone in my new life about my condition.

But I own a home outright, the cats are settled, I actually have a view when I look out of my window at night, everyone is friendly and nice, it is quiet and peaceful, and when I unlock my door and step out onto my path of a morning, I do it to the sound of birdsong and the robust aroma of cow shit instead of the wail of police sirens, snarls from passers by, and a blanket of London smog clogging my little traumatised lungs.

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So, unlike the original cast of the above mentioned much loved ‘posh soap opera’, (whom all for the most apart still reside in the Smoke and have never looked back), I have come back from London chastened, an older wiser Sista, and hope to discover my real life’s mission back in the county I was born in.

Anyway I am sorry for not having written for so long.  This has been for a number of reasons:

 

First, the sheer gruelling, creative energy sapping toll that moving house has on one, left me with little energy to wax lyric about anything really.

Second, the hellish bouts of major depression that hit me like a landslide when all seemed to be going to pot.

Third, I honestly didn’t think anyone would miss me. ¬†And, let’s be honest, most of you probably didn’t. ¬†And that’s OK. ¬†I have no problem with that. ¬†Life and blogging goes on.

Fourth, the fact that I felt, and feel that I’ve said everything there is to say about myself, my life and BPD.

Fifth. ¬†Right. ¬†I wasn’t going to say anything about this, but it’s actually gotten to the stage that being subtle and kind only had a temporary effect,¬†so I’m going to be frank and honest and hope that it works.

Since been off air, so to speak, I have been prompted, chivvied and nagged incessantly to come back¬†by a certain individual, and I cannot even fart on Twitter without it being commented on, and it’s now gotten to the stage that I feel almost stalked and ¬†dread even the thought of logging¬†into WordPress, so unfortunately for him,¬†the net result was probably the opposite of what he intended.

 

Note Рsome of you have gently enquired once or twice via WordPress where I am and what has been happening since my last post.  These comments are not directed at you, OK? x

Re my future blogging, I now feel that I have shared too much and feel a bit exposed on this profile, so I need to decide if I’m going to stick with it or start up a new one. ¬†Under another name.

But I’ll probably be back in some way, shape or form and will stay in touch.

Promise.

Over and out for now x

http://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2010/sep/18/our-friends-flannery-eccleston

 


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ASHES TO PASHES

disney-cinderella

I bought something today.

Not food shopping but clothes.

And it wasn‚Äôt second hand, and it wasn‚Äôt discounted.¬† It was full price.¬† And whilst not a flash, ‚Äėlook at me‚Äô, attention getter, it was my style but brighter, made of beautiful fabric and not at all ‚Äėbackground‚Äô.

I allowed myself because I worked my butt off for six gruelling 12-16 hour days on a job that left me changed as a person.

Because, even though it was something that is usually low key where I can stay anonymous, I was somehow miraculously made to feel important.¬† I was actually called ‚Äėimportant‚Äô.¬† As in ‚ÄėNo, sort Sista out first, she‚Äôs important.‚Äô

If this makes me sound pompous, then I’m not telling it right.  Because I’ve never really felt important to anyone, and I know for a fact that no one has ever told me that I am.  And I know it was a throw away comment from a young person who has no doubt forgotten of my existence as we speak.  But somehow, some way, I was dragged out from the shadows and put into a scenario where it was crucial that I attended day after day after day.

You can always tell when this is the case, because instead of receiving computer generated ‚Äėif you can do additional days please tick this box‚Äô emails from the agency, I was getting personal communications saying ‚Äėit would be amazing if you can do Monday‚Äô and ‚ÄėI know you must be tired, but you‚Äôre doing a fantastic job and we really need you to do just one day.‚Äô

I was bumped to the front of queues.  Interacted with the real important folk.  Heard my hero speak to me by name.

And I was totally one hundred percent comfortable with my environment and with what I was being asked to do.

Giddy stuff.  And whilst as a usual rule of thumb I get twitchy after being on a job more than 3 days (because that’s when relationships start to form) with it came a shot in the arm of pure confidence, and with that came a cumulative positive series of side effects.

I became more aware of my behaviour.  I was less spiky.  I made new friends.  I even attracted several members of the opposite sex.

However, on that note, there was one shaky moment when one very pushy guy (who was chatting up all the women) sensed my reticence and instead of backing off, laid siege to me. 

This was a disastrous move on his part because the more people pursue me or try to force me to approve and/or pay attention to them, the harder I try to avoid them, and in the end I was a hair trigger away from punching him in the face and screaming at him to get the fuck out of my aura.

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Why do people do that?  If I get one inkling that someone isn’t into me, I leg it before they do.  But everywhere I turned he was there, feet, inches, centimetres away from me staring anxiously into my eyes, voice at full, deafening volume (for God’s sake someone, pass the remote) and breathing his stinking, full English breakfast miasma into my hair.  At one stage he even laid the full length of his hand creepily onto my hip to make me turn around and face him; I could feel the disgustingly intrusive heat of his palm through the silk of my dress, and how I didn’t break his face right there and then I’ll never know.

But I digress, as typically Sista style, I am giving more attention to that one negative in a veritable ocean of positives.

Because somehow I held my temper, and merely treated him to an icy excoriating glare before being rescued by a fellow female and carted off to play scrabble with less sleazy members of the crowd.

Don’t get me wrong.  I never forgot that this was an enclosed, faux fantasy world, and that the real world was waiting for me outside, with all it’s banal, draining, terrifying challenges, and that within a matter of hours I would be transformed, Cinderella style back to that anonymous, grey drone that everyone ignores, discounts and under estimates again.

And that, dear Reader is what came to pass.¬† I am back home in rags, grovelling around the ashy fireplace, surrounded by many chores.¬† No one is pandering to my needs, clawing for my attention, fluttering around me or calling me ‚Äėimportant‚Äô anymore.

But I feel a change has taken seed and I learned a few lessons which are as follows:

  • You don‚Äôt need to be pushy to be noticed.¬† Really you don‚Äôt. Whether it be pure fluke or that my sang froid was mistaken for confidence, and ‚Äėdon‚Äôt look at me‚Äô attitude to be pure insouciance, I was chosen out of a flock of beautiful, talented, qualified young things to have a key role.
  • If someone really important likes you, others follow suit. Whether this be in a work environment, on social media or in a social situation, people are sheep and will come trotting after you trustingly if the popular folk approve of you and what you do.¬† This can either be extraordinarily, depressingly predictable news or something that can be used as a tool.¬† Sure, don‚Äôt kid yourself that all of these bleating masses are going to become your forever friends but you can potentially cherry pick along the way.
  • If you pretend to do something for long enough, you can almost make it feel real.¬† In other words, fake it till you make it. I had to flirt with some guy for six days, and whilst I was initially at an emotional distance, he was a fun person to work with and a real chemistry grew which almost certainly brought ‚Äėthe boys to the yard‚Äô.¬† Not only that but my libido woke up howling and demanding to be fed. Oh dear….but maybe it‚Äôs about time?¬† Not with him I hasten to add; he‚Äôs attached, hugely popular so categorised as ‚Äėdangerous‚Äô in my book, but maybe just maybe I‚Äôm not destined for the relationship/sexual scrap heap just yet?
  • Contact with the human race gets easier the more you do it.¬† The same principle applies to hiding away so we have a choice.¬† Don‚Äôt get me wrong.¬† I said ‚Äėeasier‚Äô and not ‚Äėeasy‚Äô.¬† I did not find 6 consecutive days surrounded by my fellow homo sapiens easy.¬† There were other people as well as Mr Needy who grated sorely on my nerves, and I find that after about 3 days, people run out of small talk and start asking questions that are difficult for me to answer.¬† Like:
    • ‚ÄėWhat‚Äôs your main job?‚Äô (I don‚Äôt have one.¬† It‚Äôs challenge enough for me to do this)
    • ‚ÄėWhere did you go for your holidays?‚Äô (Holiday?¬† From what?¬† I haven‚Äôt had one for years because I can barely afford to feed myself)
    • ‚ÄėWhat are you doing for Christmas?‚Äô (No idea.¬† My relationship with my family is tenuous and fraught with danger.¬† Two friends have invited me and I‚Äôm going to end up pissing off one or both of ‚Äėem if I accept either invitation.¬† Plus I may even end up on my own in a new house in a new town with 2 stressed out cats and an M&S turkey pizza for one.¬† Ask fucking Santa, as right now, anything might happen)

In other words, you get asked normal questions that apply to normal people.  The kind of questions that could potentially expose me for being the freak that I am.

What do I do in those circumstances?  Lie like I used to?  Make up some kind of creative adaption of the truth.  Avoid answering and turn the question back on them?  I’m not sure. But I can’t let that stop me moving forward.

And I wasn‚Äôt spotted!¬† As the most amusing thing of all was that several people chose to confide in me about others in the group that they suspected to have ‚Äėmental health issues‚Äô.¬† Oh the irony….

So I am trying harder this time.

I’m trying to do all the stuff that I’ve aimed to maintain throughout the life of this blog.  Work out, get out, make myself look attractive, take chances, interact more with people.

Get a life.

I can’t promise you or myself that I won’t stumble and fall again, as the humiliation of failing to successfully climb out of my painful pit of doom during the years that I have been blogging is one of the factors that made me abandon it and stop writing.  The shame.  But I’m trying to scale that slippery scratchy wall once again, and one day I will make it.

As being kinder to myself and others is all part of the plan this time.

As perhaps I don’t have to be a witch to get what I want out of life.

And maybe just maybe I’ll get a snog from my very own Prince (OK, so, maybe some dastardly old¬†uncle¬†is more to my taste)¬†before the year is out. ¬†I can but hope. ¬†I may even don that silk dress again ūüėČ

Namaste x


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SOME PEOPLE SAID I‚ÄôM BONKERS, BUT NOW I THINK I‚ÄôM FREE

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About a month ago, I did one of the most risky, drastic, scary things I’ve ever done.

I walked out of my therapy group.

I had been thinking about it for months before, as I had started to feel how I used to feel before going to work, i.e. dread, depression, feeling that I didn’t belong, that I couldn’t trust people, that I had to squish down who I was in order to fit in and get along with everyone.

But of course it wasn’t work, it was 3 x 90 minute sessions per week in a grotty room in south London, so every now and than my rage, frustration and resentment would eagerly burst out through the tiniest crack in my composure, to which the shrinks would leap up in glee, parry it, and press me back into the confined identikit one sixth of an egg box which replaced my desk in that office building in Soho as another, less salubrious, prison of my own making.

Back in the day I used to manage my fury by working out, and if that didn’t work, I would stay away from the rest of the human race in order to protect both them and myself from the aftermath of the explosion, but I was urged to attend therapy however I felt, the moodier the better.

At first I thought this was to make me feel accepted, but I soon realised that footage of me throwing a fit was great material for Shrink 1 & 2 to exploit by sallying forth to use their book sourced, emotionally inept techniques to try and bring me under control, which invariably only made things worse.

Not only that but on that final fateful day, I told them that I was not in a good place and they once again insisted I attend. And when my irritation started show Shrink 2, Ann, making sure the camera got her good side, took me to task with a faux puzzled expression, telling me that I sounded very angry, that she didn’t like my tone and was taking issue with it.

So they blatantly laid a trap and set me up, and I, the fool that I was, staggered smack bang into it.

That was the last straw.  I reacted badly, but on realising what was going on, took a deep breath, gathered my belongings and left that room for good.  And as I exited onto that sunny street that morning,  I realised just how much it had all been chipping away at me.

  • The blatant insincerity.
  • The being spoken to in a babyish voice as if I was some mentally subnormal infant.
  • The ignoring of me, that is to say everything about me that made me different to everyone else in the group, especially any advantage or skill that others didn‚Äôt have.¬† It was more convenient to pitch the course at the youngest/least educated/most damaged instead of treating us all as individuals.¬† For example, Shrink No. 1 Jolyon invited me to a ‚ÄėCuckoos Nest‚Äô style outing to an exhibition with the others soon after my defection.¬† Sounds innocent and perfectly pleasant you might think. ¬† But he spoke to me, a 53 year old, a sophisticated, cultured, urbane, well travelled woman as if I‚Äôd never set foot in a gallery in my entire life.¬† He actually used the words ‚ÄėI really think you‚Äôll like the pictures‚Äô and implied earnestly they weren‚Äôt always how they appeared but sometimes the most simple image meant something else and that he would explain them to me on the day and it would be fascinating.¬† I swear to God had we been in the same room and that room contained a cushion,¬†I would placed it over his earnest little vole like countenance, sat on it, squashed¬†every¬†last breath in¬†his body, then legged it out of the window.¬† I can laugh about it now but the humiliation, the shame, the realisation of how far I‚Äôd fallen was almost too much to bear.

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  • The refusal to acknowledge that my points of view in our one to one discussions were valid, well thought out, emotionally intelligent and rational.¬† As soon as he was out of his depth, he would either switch subjects, simplify my point so that it sounded ludicrous, or lapse into ‚Äėyou‚Äôre crazy so I‚Äôll just fuck with your head till you think I‚Äôm right‚Äô mode.¬† In this, he was as much a bully as my ex boss.¬† Talk about frying pan to fire.
  • The complete lack of real emotional connection with either of them.¬† I suspect this was down to a lack of real empathy (as opposed to textbook sourced techniques), and maybe this wasn‚Äôt their fault, but to my mind, this is something that cannot be compromised on if one is to share of themselves.¬† I still thank God everyday for Auntie C (my psychologist for over a decade) who was, is, and always will be, the real deal.
  • The inauthentic, horribly strained relationship that I had with Ann.¬† She didn‚Äôt like me, my humour, the way I expressed myself, and that would have been fine had she been honest about it.¬† But she would coo flattering comments at me like a constipated pigeon that both of us knew weren‚Äôt true, and I cannot bear fakes.¬† The truth would come out during her ham fisted attempts to address my behaviour and I truly marvel at the fact that she every got the qualifications she did, let alone her position at St Psychos Hospital.
  • The putting their study before my needs, even the most fundamental.¬† I‚Äôll give you an example.

Me:¬† ‚ÄėI won‚Äôt be able to stay on the course long term anyway‚Äô

Ann: ‚ÄėOh no Sista, why not?‚Äô

Me:¬† ‚ÄėYou know why, I have to sell my home and move somewhere cheaper, otherwise it will get repossessed and I‚Äôll lose the only financial security I have and end up homeless‚Äô

Ann:¬† ‚ÄėOh.¬† Well, that sounds very stressful, but we hope that you can stay as we care for you very much and you need the support of the group at this time‚Äô

Cue pointed stare.

And of course, my writing stopped dead as I didn’t believe that I had any to say of value to anyone anymore.

I could go on, but I’m sure you get the picture.

Not that they believed that I meant it.  And when the penny did finally dropped, they went all out guns blazing to get me back into my cage like a good little lab rat.

Like I say, this was not easy to keep them at bay, and Jolyon the medical professional to whom my wellbeing was entrusted to, used every trick in the book to make me stay.   

Whether you believe in the Devil or not, his moniker, Father of Lies has never made so much sense to me.

I was psychologically bludgeoned every which way, time and time again, to make me stay put. 

The ‚ÄėYou don‚Äôt know what you‚Äôre doing because your damaged‚Äô tactic.¬†

The guilt card for letting everyone else down. 

Raising his voice at me in order to make my lose my temper so he could regain control.

Promising to not try and make me stay if I came in for a exit meeting only to renege on this the second we sat down. 

The implied backing down without admitting guilt (‚ÄėSuppose you were right about Ann behaving inappropriately…‚Äô) in the hope that this would be enough to appease me and make me return followed by an immediate retraction when it didn‚Äôt work.

The denial of my rights. 

The refusal to hear my voice, my rational, honest, emotionally intelligent voice pleading for understanding and support, because my label of EPD meant that he though he was entitled to do so.

I thought my battle with my ex company was bad, but it was a walk in the park compared with this.  But I hung in there in stuck by my decision, and instead of passing me onto someone else like I requested (as if I’m that fucked up, I’d need a replacement ASAP, right?) I’ve been flung back onto an NHS waiting list by way of punishment.

But I can tell you with all honesty that I have yet to regret that decision.

Sure, there have been many bad days and my faithful old companion Fear is never far from my side.  I still have nightmares about my future, worry about losing my benefits and am still have to deal with the stress of trying to sell up and move.

But gradually things have gotten better.

And in the last week something extraordinary happened and for a week, I was made to feel how life could truly be if only I had a little faith.  More on that later.

But to all you BPD‚Äôers, EPD‚Äôers etc, I beg of you, if you can possibly avoid it, try to avoid giving up on life and throwing yourself upon the mercy of the NHS.¬† Because when you hand the keys and allow someone else to captain your ship, you only have yourself to blame when you eventually hit choppy waters in a land far away where there‚Äôs no shore in sight, and those fuckers don’t let you anywhere near the helm anymore.

I came very close to being Randled by those fuckers, but like the Chief, I’m only just beginning to know who I am again.

And this little egg, whilst still be cracked and streaked with guano, may still have a chance to release it’s potential again.

Namaste x


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SUGAR ME…

Sugar-depression

...wanna get my candy free’ sang diddy blonde songstress Lindsey de Paul back in the ’70’s, and I have to say, come Easter Sunday I was on exactly the same page, having being starved of the sweet stuff for nearly six weeks.

And I was ready.

Yessir, I treated myself to some posh chocs, made myself some fruit cake (not chocolate? Should have been a clue really) and at the last minute, made myself a batch of the best ice cream ever.

Because I’d been missing my Haagen Dazs.

I didn’t lose as much weight as last time, due to a knee injury, but my jeans were looser and, as it transpires, my energy levels were much better.

So Easter Saturday, I kind of cheated as I had to taste the components of said frozen ambrosia in order to get it right, but I’m sure the risen Christ would forgive me such a small transgression.

I decided to create my own version of HD’s Strawberry Cheesecake variant.

I made my own almond shortbread.

I made my own strawberry coulis instead of using jam as some recipe had suggested, with berries, a bit of sugar and a dash of cassis. ¬†I mean, jam? ¬†Shit, that’s a bit excessive, even for me.

I also cut down the sugar in the cream cheese ice cream after someone who had tested another version said it didn’t need as much. ¬†I used 60g instead of 100g and it sure tasted sweet enough to me.

I also had some HD salted caramel and chocolate in the freezer, so was looking forward to a nice scoop of each after Sunday lunch.

So when Easter Sunday dawned, I had a cupboard full of goodies, but actually felt a bit intimidated re how I was going to eat them all after doing without so long.

I enjoyed a slice of fruit cake for breakfast, and had a small slice of chocolate orange cake after lunch at my friends house.

But when it came to my much anticipated ice cream sundae, I was in for a shock.

As I tucked in, I realised that my lovely concoction tasted of nothing next to the HD salted caramel chocolate which was tooth achingly sweet.  One scoop did not complement the other, they clashed horribly and it was then I realised how much sugar must be in the HD range.

For anyone who doesn’t cook, ice cream before frozen is essentially a custard, and considering that it had 15g sugar per portion (not including the shortbread and coulis), I don’t even want to think how many grams per portion is in the bought varieties.

Not only that, but after a three day dietary blow out, I was hit by a stint of severe depression not experience by me for quite some time, which only goes to verify what sugar does to one’s mood and state of mind, as per the attached article about how sugar affects the brain.

And this is with reference to normal folk, so imagine what it does to crazies like me?

Which is why my beloved Haagen Dazs is in the bin, and my freezer is packed with home made ice cream and cake waiting to be consumed another day.

Don’t get me wrong; I’ll always appreciate a good doughnut (old school, not those insubstantial super sugary, highly processed Krispy Dunkin monstrosities), a nice slice of home made cake, one chocolate with a cup of tea, and being able to finish a good meal in a fine restaurant with a dessert.

But gone are the days of ‘treating myself’ to a tub of shop bough high end ice-cream¬†whilst telling myself that it won’t hurt me, or scarfing a packet of marshmallows (which are essentially pure sugar and gelatine) and congratulating myself for choosing a fat free treat.

Don’t get me wrong, the high is great; but the come down just isn’t worth it.

Haagen Dazs, we’re through!

And don’t let the door hit your big fat ass on your way out.

sizwqikzcgjyatxpyl7n

Lesson learned.

Namaste x

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/04/06/sugar-brain-mental-health_n_6904778.html


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I’VE GOTTA BE ME? #BPD

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I just had a bit of a spat with one of my closest friends, and for once, I had no idea where it came from.

I knew he was pissy with me because of his silence and lack of ‘How are you?’ texts for a few days, but when I sent him one telling him that I just got¬†a days¬†work¬†with a well know steak restaurant, he totally killed my buzz by replying:

‘Well being a vegan¬†you can’t expect me to¬†cheer¬†about it’.

Alrighty.

And because I was a bit peeved by his passive aggressive silence and for¬†pissing on my bovine BBQ, especially as (a) he’s not normally so easily offended, and (b) lives with a carnivore, (c) knows how financially strapped I am, I replied with a sarky but humorous:

‘You? ¬†A vegan? ¬†Really? ¬†But you’ve kept so quiet about it!’.

Because out of all of our circle of friends I am the most supportive, helpful and facilitating of his lifestyle choice. ¬†I send him recipes, I eat in veggie/vegan restaurants with him (something one of our close buds wouldn’t even contemplate) buy him vegan friendly gifts, make him vegan food and treats, and even baked him a vegan ‘cake’ for his birthday.

But then the real reason for his snippiness came out.  Apparently I had offended his partner by the tone of an email I had sent to our circle of friends.

I was dismayed.

‘It was banter! ¬†Surely the exclamation marks and winky faces gave that away? ¬†Anyway Bruce hardly has a subtle¬†sense of humour, surely he should be able to put his big boy pants on and suck it up? ¬†As for your being a vegan, I never forget that¬†and am¬†always willing to work around it, but I¬†eat meat, always have¬†and I need the money!¬†¬†Can’t you just be glad for me?’

Then I was hit by a barrage of venom about how insensitive I was, how eating meat was like child abuse (interesting, does that mean that beef biting¬†Bruce is his live in nonce?), how it’s my fault if I got the tone of the communication wrong, and if it was such an effort I shouldn’t bother to try work around his eating habits.

Gotcha.

The thing is I’ve know this individual for nearly 20 years so he should (a) be able to tell when I’m joking, (b) be able to automatically give me the benefit of the doubt if he thinks for one minute that I’m serious, and (c) talk to me like a man before jumping to conclusions.

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But I’m starting to fear that coming out as EUPD and depressive has given certain people a ‘Get into Jail Free’ card when it comes to deciding who’s right and who’s wrong, because I know for a fact that when I was younger, my humour was much more caustic, unforgiving and in your face. ¬†But because in their minds I was more or less ‘normal’ then that was just down to my strong personality and everyone took it on the chin and gave back as good as they got.

But now that I’m officially¬†a ‘Bunny Boiler’ and more emotionally vulnerable, then they can allude to me¬†being a bit mental as a get out clause when they want to win an argument.

I also remembered that I forgot my meds that day which may have led me to being a bit more hyper than usual.

Fuck.

So I asked another very outspoken member of our crew if she thought my email was rude, she was emphatic that it was not, and that she read it as, not just my sense of humour, but our collective sense of humour. This was and is how we roll, both in written form and face to face.

Right!  Exactly!

And to be honest, would it be such a terrible thing if I actually came off my meds and then be even more myself?

Whilst this wouldn’t be the best idea right now, it is definitely a long term goal as being perpetually tamped down makes for a very boring Sista indeed. ¬†My passion is part of who I am, and in order to live my life to the fullest, I gotta be me, regardless of what anyone else thinks or how they choose¬†to judge me.

Si’s behaviour does feel like something of a betrayal though. ¬†A less healthy Sista would have cut him to shreds,¬†held a grudge for months, been much less flexible and not bothered to make any kind of effort with the friendship moving forward.

But I’m bigger than that nowadays.

Well I will be in a few days as I need time to simmer down as I’ve just cut my medication by half. ¬†Yay!

Look out world, the largely undiluted, allegedly annoying, takes no prisoners Sista is coming atcha so you better put¬†meat on your argument, or prepare to be roasted¬†in the process! ūüėČ

dr seuss

Peace to all and Namaste x

http://www.oldielyrics.com/lyrics/sammy_davis_jr/ive_gotta_be_me.html


12 Comments

TROLLY DOLLY

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As most of you know, I was blessed (or some might say, cursed) with a very sharp tongue which was seemingly tailor made to wound.

Not a very pleasant skill I know, but if it’s any consolation, as fellow vociferous looney tunes will know, we easily beat ourselves up¬†as much,¬†if not more, than we do our unfortunate adversaries.

Fact.

But maybe, just maybe, we shouldn’t be beating people up in the first place. ¬†Even if they do deserve it.

Until lately, I’ve never been much of a Tweeter. ¬†I’m anonymous on there too so can’t connect with real life¬†friends, the people I really want to follow don’t say much of anything (probably because they have a life), so¬†a lot of the time I¬†find it quite boring.

Who cares if Jonathan Ross just had a bit of toast and marmalade for breakfast?

Not I, and I’ll read any old shit to pass¬†time, so it bemuses me why normal busy people spend hour after hour¬†on there.

Then one day all became clear when an annoying celebrity I ripped into acknowledged me.

I was strangely pleased and flattered, which is odd given that I can’t stand the man. Then the penny dropped. ¬†In a world where you, everything you say or do tends to go unacknowledged and unappreciated (especially when you have mental health issues and/or lack in confidence), Twitter is the one place where you can make the famous/arrogant/entitled hear you whether they like it or not.

So, whilst I don’t do it¬†all the time, every now and then, when someone pisses me off, something is unfair/unjust, someone is being¬†a dick, I go on there¬†and have my say. ¬† For the most part, I do it with humour and a level of affection, but of late, my tweets have been more angry and accusary.

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Appropriate and justified you might say, when it comes to someone like Oscar Pistorius literally getting away with moider, Shrien Dewani attempting¬†to follow suite, Donald Trump riding roughshod over anyone and everyone, and the heinous Katie Hopkins being, well, herself. But one day, I got all het up about a baking competition because some old dear took someone else’s ice cream out of the freezer, let it melt and didn’t say sorry!¬† What the absolute fuck is that all about?

Then, when it came to what happened on ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ last week, I started to turn, well, a bit trolly. ¬†I know, I know, it sound so frigging stoopid, but this female dancer¬†on it really gets my goat.

Let me also just say that joking apart, I am NOT a¬†keyboard warrior. ¬†Anyone that knows me would say that I would happily say what I write about anyone to their face. ¬†And the police would probably be called. ¬†But I digress….

So this dancer, Aliona won the competition three years ago, mainly down the the fact that she was paired up with someone young, hot and a professional¬†performer. ¬†That’s not to say they didn’t deserve the crown, but all of the professional dancers are amazing so¬†she lucked out getting Harry that year.

The following year she got paired up with an adorable old TV presenter, Johnny Ball, someone of whom I loved to watch when I was little. ¬†Aliona was visibly unimpressed but hey, you win some, you lose some, right? ¬†However by the next show she was absent with¬†an ‘injury’, leaving another dancer to tread the light fantastic with the old boy, who, no doubt hobbled by the disruption, performed poorly and was voted out first week.

Then in 2013 the BBC, clearly also suspecting foul play announced that she was leaving the show along with some other dancers.   But, instead of exiting quietly, dignity intact, she went apeshit, telling the press that she was being pushed out and did not know why. All this squawking seemed to work as, later that year she was back on the show and was paired up with legendary golfer Tony Jacklin.

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Had she learned her lesson? ¬†Had she fuck. ¬†Instead of looking after this national treasure, she concocted a ridiculous¬†routine that showed off all his flaws, and that, along with¬†the most ridiculous unflattering outfit I’ve ever seen, earned him the order of the boot in the first week. You could see the triumph in her eyes, and¬†she barely bothered to feign disappointment as she trotted upstairs to rejoin the professional dancers.

This year, unbelievably, she returned again and was duly paired up with Masterchef presenter Gregg Wallace, who, it has to be said, was a veritable Chippendale compared with the other two, but was Modom content?

Hardly. ¬†Whilst her face managed to hold it’s rictus grin, her eyes indicated that she’d rather take to the floor with an incontinent tramp. In a way I got that ‘cos I don’t like him much either, but tough titty sweetie, it’s your JOB to teach him!

You know you really hate someone when you hate them more than someone you really hate.  And I just hate that.

Ahem.

So much wasted energy…

So, seeing a pattern forming, I take to Twitsville and predict Mystic Meg style that poor old Gregg will be first off in week one.

And I was right. The curse of Aliona struck again. Not only that but it turns out that she was so cold and hostile to the poor sap that he was in tears and having panic attacks before his performance. ¬†But she’s not all bad. ¬†She did wait a whole¬†24 hours¬†before retweeting hundreds of messages saying she shouldn’t have to dance with ‘old puddings’ anymore and begging for the BBC to give her someone hot and young to partner with next time.

Incensed by the unfairness of all this,¬†I went after her on Twitter, telling the world about her evil strategy, how arrogant she was, and that she should be more kind and tolerant or leave, and when I was retweeted and supported, my stony little heart swelled with appreciation and self righteousness. Until I noticed some rather¬†horrible, mocking carping little tweets nestling amongst my¬†nice ones in my outbox….

Ah…..

Kind? Tolerant? Just like moi eh?

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Then¬†I realised that I was using my¬†boredom, hopelessness, anger and fear to vent at someone I didn’t know, to make me feel better, and whilst I wasn’t being horrendously cruel or threatening to shank her¬†or anything, I was starting to morph into an ugly, bitter, ranting little troll, that crouched,¬†snarling, snuffling and gibbering over her¬†keyboard, just waiting for someone to trip trap over her¬†hypocritical¬†sensibilities¬†so that she¬†can ‘justifiably’ pounce and¬†rip into them, laughing¬†gleefully¬†as they squirm and bleat with pain.

Who is this girl to me and what right do I have to demand that she loses her job?  What does she resonate in me that pushes my buttons?  Her youth and beauty?  Her arrogance?  Her ageism?  The fact that she gets away with moider?

Whatever it is, my fury is¬†not about her, it’s about me and I have to stop launching myself at people and use that energy to sort my life out instead.

So I’ll¬†stop.

Not totally though ūüėČ

Anyone with a piss taking gene as strong as mine would have to be made of stone not to join in the¬†#askrobin campaign, someone has to support the underdogs of this world, and I can’t tell a lie, the Donald Trump/Fred & Rose West debacle and the resulting¬†barrage of hilarious retweet requests made me snort tea all over my keyboard.

But when I get really ‘attack dog’ it’s time for me to turn this damn computer off, sit in a quiet place and find another way to vent my pain, before it envelops and poisons the world at large.

God, this self examination shit is hard.

Aliona, you’re a spoilt, disrespectful little cow, but you mean nothing to me or my world, therefore I will leave you alone from now on.

But if you pull the same stunt next year, you are toast bitch, you hear?

Namaste x


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OPTIMISTIC MIX TRACK 18 ‚Äď I DIDN’T KNOW MY OWN STRENGTH ‚Äď Andrea Faustini (X Factor UK)

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Let’s get one thing straight, I never, ever watch the X Factor.

I don’t like the way the contestants are treated, I don’t like the way they rig the competition and, worst of all, I don’t like the way they take artists with genuine talent (well, about 50% of them anyway) and then mould them into tedious reality TV clones.

Then, when they’ve made their dosh and milked the person for all they’re worth, they cast¬†them¬†aside,¬†and they end up touring Butlins, Pontins and working men’s clubs until they too get usurped by the next onslaught of ‘stars’, and their dreams are in tatters.

No. 25 my friends, No. 25.

Never change who you are for anyone.  Not even portly, puppet master Simon Cowell, the twisty, greedy bastard.

Andrea Faustini is currently in the final 6 for the boys category and ‘Judges Houses’ airs this weekend, and¬†I have to say that I hope he doesn’t make it.

Because he’s just too good for that shower.

Listen to the above and you’ll hear¬†why.

His voice, his conviction and this song inspired me this weekend and I hope it does the same for you, m’darlin’s.

I’m nearly broke, and at the mercy of some vindictive old bitch who hates me, I have to sell up and move to somewhere, I’m having to walk away from 2 years free therapy,¬†I¬†have no idea what my future holds¬†and I’m afraid.

But guess what?

The only crumble is this house is a rhubarb and ginger one, and that’s the way it’s going to stay.

I did 8 of my challenges yesterday, and two of you have joined me so that’s gladdened my heart more than I can say.

Namaste and take care x


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31 DAY MENTAL HEALTH CHALLENGE

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OK folks, as I am struggling with a lot of stuff at the moment, I decided to set myself some aims and ambitions for this month, and it occurred to me¬†that those of you¬†who also have mental health issues, or any other shit that might be impinging on your life, wellbeing and happiness¬†might like to join me, so I’ve compiled one of those monthly challenge thingys.

I loves a monthly challenge I does, but sometimes some of them are too ambitious for me, don’t apply to me and my lifestyle and/or some fill me with fear and guilt lest I miss a day, so whilst there are 31 aims/objectives, you/I don’t have do be doing all of them by November.

It’s more of a tick list for¬†your day if you will with the aim to try as many as possible, and¬†includes the basics, but also tools¬†and activities¬†that I’ve found useful in keeping my head above the murky waters to date.

So, I’ll go through them one by one, even though most seem self explanatory:

1. GET OUT OF BED (and STAY OUT!)

Easy huh? Well no, not for all of us. And although most of us have to leave our pit to, at the very least, use the loo of a morning, it’s sometimes only too tempting to dive back under the duvet, even when it’s not a dark day. ¬†So if you can, it’s best to make a habit of making your bed straight away so that there’s less of a temptation to do so. ¬†Then you can….

2. BATHE & CLEAN TEETH

Again some of you might be thinking ‘WTF? ¬†Are you some kind of animal?’.

But for some of us,¬†especially¬†on dark days, are so full of self loathing and lethargy, we don’t think we are worth the effort of getting clean. ¬†But there’s a reason for the¬†belief that¬†‘cleanliness is next to Godliness’. ¬†You just feel better after a freshen up. ¬†So even if you’re going to crawl back to bed straight afterwards, have a soothing, fragrant bath and scrub your gnashes first and you’ll feel your spirits lift, if only but a millimetre.

3. GIVE IN (Especially for Dark Days)

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As mentioned above, if it’s a dark day¬†and still all too much even after your soak in the tub, don’t sweat it.

That’s what your hibernate tokens are for! ¬†I’ve put six on the sheet for you to tick off, but don’t worry if you go over that. ¬†Whenever you really need to, just go back to bed, wait for the storm to pass, and don’t beat yourselves up about it, my lovelies.

4. MORNING PAGES

OK so I used to do ‘The Artists Way’ and one of the most useful take aways I got from it was to do what they call Morning Pages. ¬†So, if you are able to resist hibernating, grab a notebook or a couple of sheets of A4, sit down in a quiet place and just scrawl down freeform anything that’s in your head. ¬†Your worries, fears, too do¬†list, there’s too much sugar in your tea, your urge for a big poo, whatever; whack it all down there and keep going until you’ve got nothing left to say. ¬†It’s a great way to get everything out there, especially negative stuff, so your mind is clear for the day ahead. ¬†Then if you still have time and the inclination…

5. 10 MINUTE MORNING MEDITATION

I always thought I was crap at meditating; and in a way, I¬†am. ¬†I twitch, i itch, I scratch, I fidget, my mind monkey’s go crazy and I count the minutes until someone speaks, the alarm goes¬†off, or I yearn for an¬†excuse to stop what I’m going and go do important shit. ¬†Like watch ‘Judge Judy’ or something.

But here’s the thing; I did a class last week and went home afterwards, cussed myself out for wasting yet another hour of my life. ¬†But that night, I slept the best I¬†had for a long time. ¬†So on some level, sitting in that hall with a load of Buddhists, a stiff back and cold butt and trying, definitely did something. So I’m going to persist. And let’s face it, it’s 10 minutes! What do you have to lose? ¬†And if you like it, you can always do more ūüôā

6. (LET’S) GO OUTSIDE

I know, a lot of people have to go outside every day in order to go to work, get the kids to school, check up on their mum etc. but some of us don’t, in spite of George Michael’s enthusiastic little ditty.

And when you’re really down, you just can’t see the point of going for a ‘walk’ when you don’t need to.

Middle and upper class Brits have always¬†kind of been down with going for¬†walks, and tend to make you go along with them, just after you’ve had a massive Sunday lunch, which is incredibly uncomfortable and annoying. ¬†Us working class proles are used to the more sensible option of hitting the sofa and watching a movie after a big meal.

That said,¬†we’ll happily go for a walk TO the pub, have a huge lunch then enjoy¬†a beer or two¬†whilst kicking back in the beer garden (Summer) or on a knackered old sofa by a log fire (Winter), because at least theres some motivation there.

BUT the poshos have a point. Walking increases your fitness, fills your lungs with fresh air and speeds up your metabolism. So even if, like me, you don’t always have a reason to leave the house, do it anyway. ¬†You can always come home afterwards.

7. EAT WELL

I have a history of food issues (surprise, surprise), and have done about a million stints of binge eating before the diet that always starts on Monday but in actuality never starts at all, then in come the ghosts of guilt, the demons of disgust and the, erm, satyrs of shame.  Sound familiar?

But maybe you don’t have anything like that, but eat too much because you like it, or live off ready meals, take aways and Pot Noodles, and worry¬†not one jot?

But if you treat your body like you do your car and give it top quality food, it (and you) will perform better, so make an effort to get the good stuff like your five a day, oily fish, wholegrain carbs and seeds and pulses down you as a priory before eating any crap.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want you to tart labelling some food ‘good’ and other food ‘bad’.

That way madness lies.

If you want a burger, have one. ¬†Ideally make your own or buy one from a street food market rather than Macca D’s, at least then it will be worth the calories. Have some good chocolate or a really great slice of home made cake every now and again, then the next day stick to the low fat/sugar/salt options to balance it out.

List your intake. ¬†Not to beat yourself up about it, but as an exercise and see which days your energy slumps and which days you feel fine and learn what makes you feel good and what doesn’t. ¬†I bet some of you¬†discover that your cat/dog eats better than you do!

8. DRINK WATER

Water is amazing stuff, better and much cheaper than any high end moisturiser, the best antidote to cellulite and the best preventative to headaches and migraines, especially if you are on a shitload of meds like moi.

A lot of the time we mistake thirst for hunger. The next time you meander into the kitchen for a little sumptin’ sumptin’, ask yourself if you are really hungry. ¬†Is your belly rumbling? ¬†If not, it’s highly likely that you are thirsty, so give your body what it’s crying out for and clear the toxins out of your system in the bargain.

9. EXERCISE

I don’t exercise anything like as much as I should, especially as I know how much better it makes me feel (self loathing, self defeating biatch that I am) but if you can, find something you love, like or can just about bear to do, and¬†you’ll reap the dividends in high energy, accelerated metabolism and a calmer disposition.

Weights are great if you are just longing to punch your boss out, walking totally works for the less physical amongst us (maybe get a pedometer and do the 10,000 steps thing) and dancing is totally life affirming for everyone.

Oh and yoga?  How could I forget about that?  Marvellous stuff and you can do it at home!

10. MINDFULNESS

This stuff is great, it’s kind of a way to tame the mind monkey’s by pulling your attention out of the dark clouds, coming back down to earth, being in the present moment and acknowledging what is actually going on with a level of acceptance, whilst not actually judging yourself for that reality. ¬†Mindfulness is a big subject and Ruby Wax’s book ‘Sane New World: Taming the Mind’¬†is an excellent introduction to the practise and the way it can help you and steer you away from self defeating habits.

Simple example. ¬†If you are at your desk working through lunch, devouring a Pret special, browsing t’internet and checking out your Facebook, whilst answering emails and fretting about your next meeting/argument with your girlfriend/next energy bill, and feel yourself going downhill, STOP.

Log out of your PC and take your lunch to the park. Focus on the trees, sunshine and happy chatter as you walk. Find a spot, sit down and totally focus on your sandwich and coffee and fully immerse yourself into the act of enjoying them.  Feel the warm wood of the park bench beneath your bum, listen to the birds, fucking breathe already and be present.  Then you have more chance of looking at your situation as it really is, and not your worst case scenario.

11. RANDOM ACTS OF KINDNESS

Sometimes, doing something sweet for someone else can completely lift your mood.

Note, I say your mood. ¬†I am not going soft here, it’s a win/win scenario!

Giving the odd quid to a homeless person, helping someone carry a pram down the steps of the rush hour tube, paying someone’s bus fare when their Oyster card has run out can put the other person in a great mood, which hopefully they’ll pass onto someone else, who’ll do something nice for another person, perhaps even your boss, so when you get into the office that day, he might not be quite as big a¬†dick as he normally is.

See how it works? ¬†Like I say win/win. ūüôā

12. DO SOMETHING SCARY

God I¬†feel like such a¬†hypocrite writing this! ¬†ūüė¶

Essentially I procraste for England, especially when I have to do something scary. So instead of mithering, fretting and having mad dreams about it every night I’m going to try and bite the bullet and just do the scary stuff¬†ASAP, then let the cards fall as they may. ¬†If you’re like me, grasp the nettle and have a go too.

13. DO SOMETHING NURTURING

You feel awful/worthless/ugly/unappreciated/uncared for and you’re struggling to convince yourself that you are worthy of love from anyone.

So love yourself by doing something nice for yourself.

It doesn’t have to be expensive, and it’s better to think about what your treat should be instead of¬†just mindlessly buying yet another pair of black boots.

Have a manicure or a massage.  Get yourself a bar of expensive (not that pricy compared to those boots) artisan chocolate and eat it slowly and mindfully with a mug of good coffee.  Grill some peaches and have them with greek yoghurt and maple syrup for breakfast.  Treat yourself to the latest book by your favourite author.  Bake yourself a loaf of good granary bread to have with home made soup.  Go to a football match with your mates.  Treat yourself to cut price tickets for a concert or exhibition. Little things can lift the spirits as much as big ones.

14. TALK TO SOMEONE

I can go days without talking to anyone if I let myself.

By ‘someone’ I mean someone you actually want to talk to, as opposed to spam callers, your bank manager or that bitch of a bus driver who won’t even give you eye contact of a morning. ¬†A friend, a relative, a loved one, y’know?

For me, this can be one of the hardest challenges, as I’m so afraid of people picking up on my mood of thinking I’m going to be a burden to them.

But I’ll try if you do ūüôā

15. MEET WITH SOMEONE

As above but face to face.

EEEKKK!

16. PROTECT YOURSELF

Conversely, we all know that there are people out there who will tap into our shit and give it a bit of a stab with the sharp end of  their letter opener, purely for their own entertainment, because they are wankers and not worthy of the trust it takes for us to share our vulnerabilities and they will not respect your honesty or bravery.

Be sure to guard against such tosspots when you encounter them.  Hide your fears/hurt/doubts/weaknesses behind an impervious confident smile, show them nothing, and remind yourself that such individuals are probably more damaged than you if they can treat another human being with such poor regard.

And whenever possible, avoid them completely.  Who needs that shit in their life?

17. ARM YOURSELF

I do however, know that there are some people like this that you have to see every day, like a boss, family member or cruel spouse, and their shit does not let up.

If you are in this position, do what I was unable to do, and, on the surface, keep your cool.

Stay focussed and do not give them the opportunity of harming you.

If it’s a work colleague, do not trust them, do your share and then some, cover your ass every time so they have¬†nothing to pull you up on.

If it’s a family member, treat them like a child. ¬†Be kind and polite when they’re on form, and when they’re being dickhead, give them your most sympathetic/patronising¬†‘Oh dear…’ look and excuse yourself, even if it’s just to the next room, and compose yourself.

If it’s your partner, think about getting the fuck outta there, because no one should take that kind of shit from their husband or wife. ¬†Easier said than done I know, but a bad marriage/relationship is the worst place to be for our kind.

18. TALK TO YOURSELF

I’m serious. ¬†If you find yourself in a stressful or distressing situation, make an excuse, go somewhere quiet and ‘talk yourself down’ like you are on the ledge of a very tall building, preparing to jump.

You don’t have to say it out loud. But try and tap into your higher self and let them take over.

Say things like:

It’s OK, no one noticed you fluffed that slide on your presentation, they were too busy focussing on the good stuff!’

‘You’re safe, there’s no need to panic, we’ll wait here until the crowd disperses, then try and board a quieter train’, or¬†

‘Take no notice, she’s being a bitch because she’s threatened by you. ¬†She doesn’t know that you’re in the loo freaking out. ¬†Chill. Then we’ll put some fresh lipstick on, repair that eye make up and walk back to the table like a badass, OK?’

You’re essentially being your own in house counsellor. ¬†Have a go. ¬†it’s worked for me in the past.

19. GET SOME PHYSICAL CONTACT

Some of us have more physical contact then we ever really wanted, and then some, in the form of touchy feely men on the tube, snot nosed, screaming toddlers and overly sexually demanding partners, but some of us can go weeks without a cuddle.

And that’s hard. ¬†Because as much as we may mentally dread someone being in our space, the human body needs touch, so try and get your quota somehow.

See family more often, lunch with ‘huggy’ friends and/or get yourself a pet. ¬†I swear you’ll reap the benefits.

20. LIMIT SOCIAL MEDIA/TV

At the moment, much of my life takes place on the computer screen I’m currently staring at, but ‘It’s life Jim, but not as we should know it.’

Actually it’s no life at all. ¬†It’s merely escapism, otherwise why would you feel so lonely? ¬†Limit your internet time to 20 minute stints then turn it off, stop watching ‘Real Housewives’ and go out for lunch with a friend instead, Goddammit!

21. SAY “YES”

Oh Gawd, again, I am not good at this at all.

I bail all the time on social events, and as a result, I’m as lonely and isolated most of the time. Trouble is I’m crap at small talk, and unless I click with someone, I tend to long to go home 30 minutes into a party/dinner/Meet Up event because I get bored.

Naughty Sista! ¬†Take it from me, it’s probably one of the most self defeating thing you can do, so say ‘Yes’ to stuff, even if you think you might regret it, and work through your boredom/anxiety/insecurity if you can. The only regrets I have are for not taking that chance and going out in the first place.

22. SAY “NO”

Are you one of those people who gets pressured into doing stuff because you’re afraid to say ‘No?’. ¬†Usually by people who know they’re imposing but still do it because they know they can get away with it?

Fuck ’em!

Next time they saunter up wearing a shit eating grin with their:

‘Hey can I borrow your brand new car to take my druggy buddies to Glastonbury as we can’t afford trains, don’t have a tend so¬†need it to sleep in?’

‘Hi! Can you just keep an eye on little Igor for say, 8 hours, he’ll be no trouble, he’s nearly over that stomach bug, and¬†is just coming out of his ‘screaming as if he’s being stabbed’ phase?’

Or ‘Sweetie, I’m just off to the rugby, you don’t mind entertaining my¬†sour,¬†humourless, whingy face-like-a-smacked-arse parents till I get back do you?

ZAMMO

Do a Zammo and just say NO!

Don’t get defensive, apologise or justify your decision. ¬†Like Queeny says, ‘Never complain, never explain’ because you’ll just be giving them the opportunity to negotiate. ¬†Just smile sweetly, utter that one syllable word¬†and walk away to the sound of their jaw dropping to the ground.

Sweet!

23. DO NO HARM

Guess what? ¬†I used to be a revenge freak. ¬†If someone hurt, betrayed or shafted me, they’d be punished. ¬†Either by my frosty silence, my cutting excoriating condemnation or even, once, I booked¬†10 early morning alarm calls in one night (I was young, OK?!) for an ex boyfriend.

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Sorry.  That was not a good thing to do!  Well it was at the time, but us punishers perpetrate our own karma because as bad as we can be to others, it only pales into comparison of how vile we can be to ourselves.

Anger is destructive. ¬†I am the living embodiment of that statement. ¬†I was born angry and whilst it’s lessening all the time, I’ll probably be about 90 by the time all of it is out of my system. But nowadays I choose to try my very best not to lash out either to others or myself.

Be kind and leave the others to their fate and find a way to vent without hurting others. ¬†You’ll definitely keep more friends that way!

24. TAKE YOUR SHIT

Because like it or not, shit is coming to you.

And it’s not because you’re a bad person, have done something wrong or deserve it. ¬†It’s just that shit comes to us all. ¬†We¬†emotionally vulnerable types are just not that great in dealing with or accepting it.

i rather naively believed that the more I was in touch with myself, and the more I prayed and meditated that the shit would, OK, not stop plopping down, but maybe come down the size of rabbit droppings as opposed to huge slabs of elephant dung.

What. A. Fool.

I really didn’t get it. ¬†These things don’t stop it blasting out, they just train us to be more accepting and complacent about it, so that no matter how vile and stinky it is, we have a choice and the opportunity to choose how much it disturbs our equilibrium.

So when you get hit by a massive metaphorical doody (or a real one, some neighbourhoods are like that) shake off the worst and find a way of getting the pain/disappointment/fear out of your system (see Exercise, Mindfulness, Do No Harm, Something Nurturing).

And maybe invest in a¬†robust¬†umbrella. ūüėČ

25. BE TRUE TO YOURSELF

You feel that people don’t like you, so you try and morph into what they want you to be so that you’ll be accepted?

Enough already. ¬†God/Buddha/Allah/that Rabbit from Watership Down made you the¬†marvellous, unique, individual¬†creation that you are, so embrace your quirks and oddities and stay true to yourself and you’ll attract your true kinsmen instead of cringing¬†in a field of boring, bleating sheep, terrified that you’ll be found out.

26. LIMIT/CUT OUT STIMULANTS

My darlings, people like us need drug taking, binge drinking, overeating, or a constant drip feed of black coffee like a frigging hole in the head, especially, as I said earlier, if you are on masses of medication

Plus such mood enhancers come with a price, and the comedown is hard enough for ordinary folk to bear, let alone us loonies.

Anything beyond a few wine gums or a coffee flavoured Walnut Whip should be avoided or used in moderation.  OK?

27. (ACCENTUATE) THE POSITIVES

Sometimes, even if you’ve had a crap day (or especially if you’ve had a crap day) and like me, you are prone to letting bad¬†stuff take over and sully everything, it’s good to make a list of the nice¬†things that happened and stuff that you are grateful for before hitting the sack. ¬†They can be anything from getting a pay rise, to some hot girl smiling at you on the train,¬†or bumping into an old mate, to having a good nights sleep, it not raining¬†that morning or your flatmate leaving you half a pizza in the fridge when you get home. There’s always something to be grateful for if you look hard enough.

It’s also a good way to start the day, but I’d wait until you’ve had your first cup of tea/coffee first.

Just sayin’.

28. PLAN

Try and plan out a schedule for your week, as it will enable you to ensure that you’re not bogged down with just work and drudgery, or it will ensure that you have something to do if you don’t work and tend¬†to hide from the world. ¬†You might not always stick to your plan for that day, but if you’ve got your week mapped out with fun, nurturing, positive arrangements, you’ll be less likely to let it whizz past in a¬†SSRI stupor of nothingness.

29. FORGIVE

Had an encounter with some total tosspot/bitch and you’re still seething about it? ¬†Try not to let it disturb your rest. ¬†Figure out their side, why they might be behaving like a complete twat, and you might actually start to feel sorry for them. ¬†If that doesn’t work, you might want to put pen to paper and rant about them in your….

30. EVENING PAGES

Remember Morning Pages? Well I also do them before going to bed, especially if I have loads on my mind. ¬†Somehow spilling out my troubles on paper before turning out the light somehow makes me feel as if I have shared them with someone and sometimes I even have a solution when I wake up. ¬†Certainly worth a go I reckon. Then have another crack at Forgiving! ūüėČ

31. PRAYER/MEDITATION

You don’t have to be religious to pray you know. ¬†If you don’t believe in a Higher Self, just¬†use your prayer as a form of¬†affirmation or to talk to your subconscious. ¬†Share your troubles, your fears, your wishes for the future and see what happens. ¬†Or, of course, you can meditate instead.

Easy, right? ūüėČ

OK, I know it’s not easy to do anything when you’re at your worst.

But if you print out the attachment, look at it every day and try and do as many as possible, then you’ve achieved something, by the very act of considering your options!

It goes without saying that I’d love for as many of you as possible to join me on this as I’d love your company and to share your stories, so please tag me in if you decide to have a go!

What the hell, in order to get the ball rolling I’m going to tag the first ten fellow sufferers I can find, starting now!

 

http://takingthemaskoff.com/

 

http://phoenixtherebirthofmylife.wordpress.com/

http://lifeinabind.com/

http://thebipolarbum.com/

http://marcimentalhealthmore.com/

http://dysthymiabree.com/

http://mrsbipolarity.com/

http://crazyaboutbipolar.wordpress.com/

http://battybeth108.wordpress.com/

http://momof3isnuts.wordpress.com/

Please have a go and share with others if you’ve a mind to.

I’ll be creating a nice certificate for you to have on your wall (don’t get too excited, OK?) when we’ve finished, and who knows, maybe this list will help you in the way that it’s helped me at times.

That said, no worries if you’d rather pass on this.

Good luck Mistas and Sistas! xx

http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Artists-Way-Discovering-Recovering/dp/0330343580/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1412154817&sr=8-1&keywords=the+artists+way 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sane-New-World-Taming-Mind/dp/1444755730

http://acanvasoftheminds.com/2014/01/07/blog-for-mental-health-2014/


6 Comments

FORGIVE (WITH) ME!

 

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Today I planned to meet up with a couple of people whom I believe screwed me over, and naturally I was apprehensive about the encounter.

Why, you might wonder, was I meeting them in the first place?

I was meeting them because I have this habit of permanently falling out with friends over intentional or unintentional infractions of the friendship and consequently don’t have many left, so I have to learn how to handle people better and forgive and accept their failings as they probably accept mine.

I’m not very good at forgiveness, you see.

‘You have to be mindful of who you let see your ‘child’!’ my counsellor Aunty C urges, ‘some friends can be trusted to this end, but you¬†can’t be super close to everyone! ¬†You have to protect yourself whilst figuring people out!’

She’s right. I’m not much for casual friends. ¬†And If I meet a ‘kindred spirit’ I tend to spill my guts, show my vulnerability and then when they can’t resist the temptation of fucking me over and/or letting me down, I furiously see them off with my¬†(metaphorical) sawn off shotgun complete with a 20 ft flame thrower attachment. ¬†And they, understandably, run. ¬†Never to be seen again.

You would think that someone in my position would¬†do everything they¬†could to hang onto friends wouldn’t you?

During my therapy prep session with the Perkies earlier this week https://sistasertraline.wordpress.com/2014/04/29/holy-moses/, I was asked a series of questions about whether I was (a) terrified of being left by men/family/friends, (b) whether I ever begged them to say, and (c) whether I ever used emotional blackmail on them to make them stay.

I believe my answer them was something along the lines of¬†‘I’d rather cut my tits off and hang them on a barbed wire fence.’

That caused¬†a bit of pinkcheekitis I can tell you. ¬†Bless! ūüėČ

It was then that I started to think that I might not be BPD after all.

Then I remembered. ¬†I did used to do those things when I was young, green and vulnerable with no confidence in myself whatsoever. ¬†Then my mum died and, in my fury and outrage, I turned to stone. ¬†Then¬†when anyone messed me around or let me down (especially men), I wouldn’t cling to them. ¬†I dumped them so hard their ears bled. ¬†I essentially despatched them before they got chance to despatch me. ¬†Even if they never intended to in the first place.

I was one cold bitch.  And I loved it.  I gloried in my intractability, my formidable reputation, my ability to show no fear, and my merciless resolve to never, ever forgive them for what they had done.

I felt STRONG.  I was respected.  No one dared cross me.

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And decades later, when I finally unravelled, my so called armour collapsed like a wet cardboard box, leaving little peeled prawn me quivering and trembling alone in the barren landscape of my reality wondering how the hell I was going to protect myself now.

I’m starting to realise that I had it all wrong. ¬†As in keeping out anyone who let me down, I also kept out not only their potential goodness, but the good people who could have had a positive, supportive¬†role in my life, because, from a love perspective, I am essentially alone now.

And without being cringy, corny or a God botherer, it’s only since I’ve been using my beads and praying that I’ve seen any kind of positive shift in my life.

When I had a rather intimidating family get together the other week, I prayed for help in getting through it, to not deliberately sabotage it by make things awkward no matter how annoying they were, to not take offence at any tactless/dumb/hurtful thing that might inadvertently be said, and to let them in, if only for that day.

And I survived it.  They thought it was a great success.  I was exhausted, but exultant and relieved it was over.

My pow wow with the Perkies? ¬†I prayed to be patient, trusting and to remember that they were, and are, trying to help me. ¬†It’s not their fault that they are young, lovely and normal! ¬†And apart from one or two awkward moments it was fine.

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Today was going to be hard though. ¬†Because those naughty Mind Monkeys were at it again, telling me that Friend 1 was the instigator¬†and was now shitting himself because I might drop him in it with Friend 2, so perhaps I should do just that, hmm? ¬†Serves him right hey! ¬†And they reminded me that Friend 2 was nervous after getting a chilly reception from me last time our paths crossed,¬†and wouldn’t it be a¬†good laugh to¬†keep her on tenterhooks all day by way of punishment? After all, she complicit¬†too, so deserved to be jerked around.

It’s hard to resist those prankish primates¬†with their mischievous, amusing, destructive ideas. ¬†They kept tempting me with¬†sharp, witty, faux innocent one liners to smack my friends¬†down with, reminding me of their weaknesses and that I should punish them¬†so that¬†by the end of the day, they’d know that they’d been Tangoed per se.

Boom!

Actually no. ¬†If I went down that route, no one would be speaking to anyone by lunchtime, so whilst I was sorely tempted to exact a little revenge, I asked for help in keeping calm, not being cruel, getting over what had gone before and, without putting my ‘child’ in danger to let myself be softer and¬†to try¬†to see the good inside them. ¬†And, if possible, to forgive them.

And apart from one teensy weensy bitch slap (Look, it was more of a pat than a slap, OK?!) which only happened because someone decided it was a good idea to resurrect a point of contention, it went fine.  I was a bit stiff and uncomfortable at first, but by the end of the day everyone was happy, relieved and it was evident that we had finally put the entire matter behind us.

I think I’m over it. ¬†And it might not sound like a big deal to a normal, balanced, non BPD person, but for me it really is.

Getting over shit and not holding onto anger, bitterness and the desire for revenge seems to be at the heart of my potential recovery.

Then I saw this on today’s Reader Feed.

http://forgivenesschallenge.com

Timely, no?

I don’t know what this consists of, how it’s going to work or whether it will be useful, but I’ve decided to give it a go, as God knows I need all the help I can get.

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That said, I’ve just played the first video and if I was a cartoon I’d have a huge question mark above my head right now.

You’ll know what I mean when you watch it. ūüôā

Strange days indeed, as I’ve said more than once of late…

If you too have an issue with forgiveness and feel ‘stuck’ because of it, drop your weapon of choice and join me.

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Not for the wankers who’ve hurt you, but for you and your well being.

Because you’re worth it (flicks hair Cheryl stylee).

Namaste xx

 

 

 


18 Comments

THE PAPER DOLL

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OK, I this is going to be a bit negative. ¬†I KNOW I’m supposed to be trying to change things for the better, but I just have to get this off my chest!

Today, I let yet another friend go.

The way I see it, this person wasn’t really much of a friend, I wasn’t seeing them at all as they’ve been avoiding me like a dose of herpes, so the fact that I gave them a hearty push toward the door marked EXIT was only un-delaying the inevitable as far as I’m concerned.

I’ve lost a lot of friends this way. Some might say I should shut my gob, hang tough and wait for things to change when someone lets me down, but I seem to have a complete and total intolerance for insincerity and bullshit, coupled with a total inability to keep quiet when I encounter it, which doesn’t bode well for any fair-weather, bullshit toting ‘friend’.

In order to tell both sides of the story, I have to inform you that this friend has had a bad time of things of late, BUT even though she’d kept me at arms length long before her stuff hit the fan, I made sure she knew that I was there if she needed me and helped her both emotionally and practically when the going got tough. ¬†In return, both before and after these incidents, I heard nothing from her. ¬†Not even at Christmas or on my birthday.

So today when I contacted her to suggest we meet up, she fobbed me off, offloaded to me on the phone as per usual, and asked me a perfunctory ‘So how are you?’ right towards the end of the ‘conversation’. ¬†When I told her I was up and down as usual, to save her listening to my woes, she started lecturing me about how I was wasting my life. ¬†I told her that it was not my choice to be this way and that I had an illness, but she continued to spray me with her ignorant, arrogant, uninformed volley of verbal effluent, so I quickly brought the call to a close before I lost my temper.

She then proceeded to lecture me via text with regard to my pulling myself together, telling me very helpfully I only have one life, I’m master of my own fate and only I can change things for myself, to do ‘happy’ things, get out into the world, the aforementioned globe was my crustacean, be happy, take each day as it comes, light at the end of the tunnel, blah, blah, cliche, cliche, bullshit, bullshit.

I seethed.  But I managed to hold it together.

Then she made the fatal mistake of following this pile of shite with another text saying ‘I wish I knew how to help’.

Really?

So I told her.

I told her that those times I’d contacted her in the last three months inviting her to do stuff with me was me trying to, albeit rather unsuccessfully, get myself out there, but despite her previous assertions of being ‘there for me’, she did not make the time to be by my side.

I told her that I had recently been diagnosed BPD before Christmas and the reason that she didn’t know this is that the one and only time we’d spoken since, I couldn’t get a word in edgeways. ¬†As per usual. ¬†I’m not kidding. ¬†In 2012 when I walked out of my job it took three meet ups for me to inform her of that, as she never shuts the fuck up long enough to let me speak.

I told her that lecturing me is NOT helpful as it frustrates me, especially when she talks such a load of wank, and that her monthly period downer is not in any way comparable to how I feel, even on a good day, as on the depression scale, it is like a mosquito bite compared to being torn apart by a shark.

I then told her that the most helpful thing of all for people with mental health issues is to do what I do for her; which is to LISTEN without comment, judgement or prejudice and to be there.

I then finished by saying that it’s obvious that she doesn’t can’t really cope with/tolerate my friendship right now, so I was going to stop trying to get her to do stuff with me and leave her be. ¬†And maybe, just maybe we’d touch base later on in the year. ¬†But that would be down to her. ¬†Not me.

Right now I feel like I usually feel when I’ve dumped someone. ¬†Satisfied, a bit smug, and full of self righteous indignation. But I know one day I’ll regret it, and will be pleased that I’ve kind of left the door, if not wide open, but slightly ajar.

After all, no one is perfect.

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But I’m so fed up of these Paper Doll Pals who call themselves your friend, claim to be accepting and supportive of your condition (mental illness is very ‘right on’ nowadays, doncha know), but will actually do anything to avoid seeing you, and if they absolutely have to, will come mob handed, and talk at you with a jittery, staccato delivery, just in case you utter a word, which could lead to you drowning them with your tears, ranting at them like a maniac, foaming at the mouth and showing them up in front of that cute waiter in Carluccios.

This is particularly galling, as it’s very rare that I offload on anyone, and if I do it’s when I’m in control so the dialogue is conversational, analytical and usually in response to the other person’s questions. ¬†I’ve never dared let anyone see me on my darkest days, cos if they’re like this at the mere awareness of my condition, they’d probably run from the room screaming if they saw me at my worst, buried under my duvet, crusty eyed and gummy mouthed, willing myself to die rather than face the world again.

For anyone reading this who has mental health issues, or is close to someone who has, you know yourself that we aren’t always easy to be around. ¬†We’re not always reliable. ¬†We cancel a lot, to spare you seeing us when we’re sick. ¬†We can be a bit fuzzy depending on our med intake at that time. ¬†But on the plus side, we’re usually witty, creative, intelligent, empathic, have integrity, and if someone is lucky enough to be a real friend to us, well in return, you will not find a more loyal, empathic, supportive pal, even if you try.

We are flesh and blood, body, mind AND spirit, and will be there for you in every capacity we can and will stay strong, even when you yourself cannot.  We will not flutter away, flapping crazily like the Paper Doll Pals of this world when the wind blows a little.  Come rain, sleet, snow or shine, if we are well, we will be there, braced against the wind, face scrunched against the onslaught, because we value your friendship more than anything in the world, because you are rare and all the more precious for that.

Want to know how to be a friend to someone with mental health issues?

Listen on those rare occasions that we want to confide in you.  Hide your embarrassment if you can as that will only make us clam up and feel mortified that we are impacting you this way.   

Be there. ¬†Bodily. ¬†As in, in the same room! ¬†And if you can’t be there bodily, be present in the best way you can. ‘Cos sending a text saying you love someone when you can’t be bothered to drive five minutes down the road to be with them is untruthful and insulting. ¬†Spare us your bullshit¬†purlease, we have enough to deal with, thank you. ¬†Once, many years ago when i was having a killer migraine, my sister knelt beside my bed and held my hand for hours. ¬†Practicality wise, it didn’t help. ¬†Her hand and arm got in the way as I twisted, turned, wept and groaned trying to find comfort and respite. ¬†But her and it’s continual presence reminded me that I wasn’t alone. That someone who cared was there, suffering alongside me. ¬†And I still remember it to this day.

Be normal with us! ¬†You don’t need to gaze moonily into our eyes and ask ‘How are you?’ nodding sadly, squeezing our hand at our response, as personally, I’d likely to throw up, laugh or take the piss out of you mercilessly. Just be the same sarky bitch/jerk/clown you always are in real life as that’s why we love you in the first place. ¬†Plus it will, no doubt help us from going under, so tip toeing around us doesn’t do us any favours. ¬†You being you, enables us to be who we are, at our best. ¬†And we’ll tell you if we’re feeling off, OK?

Don’t preach or make suggestions unless we ask for them. There is nothing rational about mental illness. ¬†We know that going to the gym, doing voluntary work, meeting new people can be beneficial. But for a lot of the time, despite good intentions, we just aren’t able to do the best for ourselves, because a lot of us are afraid, neurotic, paranoid and/or hate ourselves. ¬†if however you’re doing something yourself, offer to drag your nutty pal along with you. ¬†They might just say yes, and you’d be doing them a massive favour.

Be honest.  If you have your own shit to deal with and need time alone, just tell us.  We, if anyone, will understand the most and will give you the space you need until you feel strong enough to deal with our crazy asses again.

Have I missed anything? ¬†Please comment if I have because it’s important that people don’t treat us with kid gloves, or act like they’re in the presence of an unexploded bomb. ¬† We’re still the same old Sista/John/Caroline/Edgar that you know and love, just a bit flawed that’s all. ¬†Like everyone else. ¬†Just more so.

In the meantime, I’m hoping that my therapy will start sooner rather than later, as at this rate, I might as well be on a dessert island, such is my growing isolation. ūüė¶

As for my thin, wispy little friend, I’ll just have to see what happens to our friendship, and will let you know if she returns.

Anyway, you know what they say, don’t you?

If you love someone, let them fuck the hell off until they realise what they’ve lost and come back, with their weedy, scabby tail between their legs.

Well it goes something like that, anyway‚Ķ. ūüėČ

Namaste x