It has been nice to just write.
Of course, letting my inner sad sack
out shows the world what a real whiner I am…
but since I’m never claimed to be anything else but,
I am not ashamed.
Today ended better than it started.
I love it when God does that.
I started out singing the blues
but he changed me tune.
My students helped me take the mask off
and just breathe.
I felt better physically as the day progressed.
Nothing was spinning
and I didn’t have to write on the board much
so nobody noticed that my hands were shaking.
I admitted to God and myself
(but mostly God)
that I dislike two of my coworkers
and didn’t have the energy to keep
And the sky didn’t open up
and St. Peter didn’t whack me in the butt
with a lightning bolt.
I always feel so guilty
when I don’t like people.
How am I ever going to LOVE
them if I can’t get past step A?
Today I felt no guilt.
With so many OTHER things
that God is working on in me…
I think he has grace for this one area
so I’m not going to guilt myself out
or beat myself up.
It takes two to do the dysfunctional tango
and if they even try to meet me half way
I’ll put my clogs back on and
return to the dance floor.
I’m at home in my robe.
The piece of junk that I bought on Amazon.
Smelt like wet dog for months
now I’m wearing it until I can get a mainland friend
to buy me a real bathrobe.
But I digress….
I did my one mile walk.
I watched the setting sun from my deck.
I thanked God that my day with my students ended well.
Just because I focus on the bad doesn’t mean
I’m oblivious to the good
that God brings to me on a daily basis.
He is, after all, the air I breathe
and the rising Son on my horizon.
I have much to give thanks to him for
and I won’t ever forget it
but the bad isn’t going to go away
if I slap on the happy Christian mask
and pretend that everything is ok
and that I’m thankful for the bad.
Thank you Lord that the sun came out today.
It rained most of the morning
but God didn’t let that interfere
with the goodness.
Now if I can only go to sleep
and not have to get up to pee every two hours
…or wake up without choking
Then you can “bet your bottom dollar”
that there will, indeed, be Son.
This morning I woke up choking
and unable to breath.
Since this isn’t the first time
I was able to calm myself
to pound myself on the chest
until I could
take more that shallow
I thought about finally telling my doctor..
until I remembered that he ran a bunch
of tests and still couldn’t fix what ailed me.
most of it settled down enough
to be manageable.
I’m praying that this will be the case now.
As I sat down to write the title
came to mind.
It’s a song I like
about how God is the air I breathe.
How I am lost…
desperate without him.
As crappy as my life is and has been…
I would be lost without God.
I don’t know how non-believers do it.
It is my greatest prayer that God would step in
and do a mojo on my life.
I hate my life.
Have for some time…
but after 20+ years of following him
I have seen no mojo.
And I cannot BELIEVE I’m saying this…
But if this is God’s plan for my life,
I accept it because without him
and his plan
I am lost…
I have always hated the whole “thy will be done” bit
because it always sounded like a Christianese cop out.
Y’know a phrase Christians pulled out to make themselves feel
I get it.
*Late for work. Editing not included.
I used to write posts about masks
and how I hated to wear them.
I felt like I had to wear them to appear ok to other people…
I felt like I couldn’t be me.
Today I wore a mask and I was glad of it.
It was a mask of necessity.
None of my students in my first class knew
that behind my joking mask
I was trying really hard not to throw up.
None of my students in my second class knew
that behind my smiling mask
I was a mass of nerves trying hard to keep it together…
because new changes were coming down the pike
and I felt like I was going to fall apart.
I had to approach my boss today.
I hate unplanned meetings.
These changes were going to impact me
the most and I am already falling apart
on the inside.
One more straw and this camel’s going to implode.
Throughout the day I’d pause to pray.
And from where I sit
God didn’t answer a single one.
By the time I got into my car to leave I wanted to cry.
I couldn’t wait to get home for some free therapy.
That and my walking video.
Walking anywhere at all pretty much hurts
so I lead a really sedentary life.
My abdomen and my right side
feel as if I have a lead weight strapped to me.
My intestines pull every time I walk,
but for some really odd reason that escapes me,
I can walk a mile with Leslie Sansome with no pain
in the comfort of my living room.
I actually know why it doesn’t hurt….
I guess it’s odd because I never feel motivated enough to do it,
but now when I’m in more pain than I’ve been in for a LONG while
I can’t wait to get home and walk.
I asked God to motivate me
about a month ago.
Seems like I better be careful what I pray for.
You couldn’t force me to do the walking workout a month ago.
Now it is actually the one time during my whole day when I don’t feel sick.
My hands still shake…
but I guess you can’t have everything.
The minute I walked through the door
I took the mask off.
I don’t have to pretend to be healthy.
I don’t have to pretend to be stable.
I don’t have to do anything
but be still
and know that God is God…
Even when I’m bitter and cranked out
God still loves me.
Even when all my parts seem to be malfunctioning.
God loves me.
He even loves me when my faith is stretched thin
and I begin to doubt.
People make such a huge deal about having doubts
Which only makes you feel condemned if you have any.
I doubt that God is going to heal me.
And I get pissed when people insist that he will heal me.
They don’t know this.
Or that he already has healed me.
I hate to be argumentative… but the last time I checked
I wasn’t healed.
I don’t find this line of conversation helpful.
Especially when it comes from physically able people.
I know that I will be fully restored in heaven…
but heaven seems so far away.
Good thing I don’t have to put on the faithful mask
He knows my doubts and doesn’t want me to pretend with him.
Some might disagree with me.
They might want to treat doubt/lack of faith as the unforgivable sin…
but God had the brother of Jesus tuck this seldom-quoted little gem
in an obscure book in the bible for me to hold on to
when I grow weary of wearing masks:
“And have mercy on those who doubt. “
Lord? Please have mercy on me.
For yet another morning
in a long string of mornings
I woke up with the shakes.
My doctor cannot get rid of the severe
and it is all I can do to keep
my hands steady enough to type.
It sucks to drive some times too..
They wear off mid day
but for most of the morning
I feel like I have some weird palsy.
it’s mostly my hands where
the shaking is visible
but I feel it inside my entire body.
I feel unsteady, inform
too old to live in a body this young..
Copay became my enemy when I had take
a test that ended up costing me $600 out of pocket.
I’m tired of tests anyway.
I hate people poking and prodding me.
I’m tired of surgeries.
The last one was a nightmare.
I am not the stoic post whatever it is survivor
I can’t act like I’m ok with this because I’m not.
Bipolar Girl just wants to get back in bed and pull the covers back up.
I want to whine and cry
So that my Father will come rushing to catch me.
I want all the shaking (my body)
and the rattling (my bones)
and the rolling (my upset stomach)
Father, please make it stop.
I find it interesting that if you tell people how you are really doing,
they assume that it is a cry for help
and try to fix you….
when all it was…
was open and honest sharing.
I haven’t felt like I could openly and honestly share here for some time.
I haven’t known what to say here for a while
because I forgot what blogging was supposed
to mean to me:
That’s all it was EVER supposed to be
but I got caught up in the hoopla
of the Hawaii Writers Conference…
but given the fact that they went belly up…
why did I listen to them?
It turned my blog into something I didn’t want it to be.
Most of the speakers insisted that you needed
a blog as your “platform”
so you could schmooze some publisher
into thinking that you came with your
Publishers really only want people
who can demonstrate that their book
is a seller.
A blog with a gazillion hits
pretty much sells a book even before
it’s ever published.
Unfortunately for me, I don’t have a gazillion
My counter is decidedly
lower than that.
I’m a niche writer.
Unless you have a mental illness
or know somebody who does,
this blog is of little or no interest
I let my blog die a natural death
because I didn’t like that I hardly
got any hits.
I have had to accept the fact that
my book has also died.
Therefore I do not need a platform.
I kept trying to write for my audience
and in doing so I forgot why I blog:
And I set myself on a collision course.
I have not had an emotional outlet for months.
I stopped going to church because it was too
I pushed pretty much all of my friends away.
Oh, they are still my friends…
but I haven’t talked to most of them in a long while.
So now I find myself with more problems than I know what to do with
and no outlet.
My old computer died.
Everything I had on it was not backed up.
All my journals and important writings – gone.
My manuscript — gone.
The chronicle of 10 years of my life – gone.
I thought maybe God was trying to get me to give up on the book
and the blog.
I mean, how can I publish is it’s all gone?
I was upset
until I realized I actually felt
I had tried to publish
and I failed.
Failure is NOT the unforgivable sin.
But hiding your talent in a hole is
frowned on in scripture
and that’s what I’ve been doing.
I have let fear, pride, and a whole bunch of emotions
stop me from writing.
I might not ever publish,
but I am still a writer.
I used to write about my train wreck of a life
and what God was doing to fix it.
What I think now is that God is returning me
to blogging because my life is a train wreck and needs fixing.
I am not trying to build a platform.
I’m not trying to write for my audience.
I am not writing for you.
I am writing for me.
I a writing because my life depends on it.
I’ve disabled comments because what I need is free therapy,
not unsolicited advice.
If I do not find a healthy outlet I am going to hit critical mass.
Death has been on my mind a lot lately… but I haven’t come this far to let death claim me.
My life is falling apart and I cannot fix it.
My friends cannot fix it.
My church cannot fix it.
You cannot fix it.
Only God can.
So maybe this really IS a cry for help…
but I’m writing to the only one who can actually do something about it.
Today is day one.
God? I know you hear me.
Please do something to fix me
and I promise to write all about it.
Yesterday somebody made a comment on a post I’d written back in 2012. Amazing how things can change and still remain the same. I reread the post because I think I was meant to. It speaks into where I’m at now… but the big difference is how I view church. Church is not the issue right now, but I’m letting all the other issues that are erupting around me stop me from going to church. And as I drift from church I feel like my relationship with God is taking some pretty gnarly direct hits. I mean to change that. I want to draw near to my church, but more importantly… I mean to draw near to God. Spiritual drift only happens if we let it.
Originally posted on The Adventures of Bipolar Girl:
In my last post I mentioned that I went to church. It’s been since April.
And all of 2011 I actually took a break from my church and attended another one. I had my reasons and I’m sticking to them. I don’t recommend this and wish I hadn’t felt compelled to do it myself. Now some people will have you think that going to church is the cure all for everything that ails ya’… but I disagree.
Don’t get me wrong, I do think people should go to church and be active members in the body of Christ, but church is not always a warm fuzzy experience for some people. In fact, it’s not always a safe place for some people and you don’t have to have Bipolar Disorder for that to be true. When church effects my mental health, Bipolar Girl looks for the nearest exit. Sometimes it is…
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Yesterday I was on “Implode Mode.”
I was overwhelmed
and unsure what to do.
All those emotions
that I habitually
keep bottled up?
Were about to come
like a Mentos in a
2 litre bottle of Coke.
I had no idea what to do…
I just knew that I didn’t like
what I was feeling
and I needed it to go away.
That stretchy/something’s got to give feeling
had me seeking out people to pray.
I haven’t been connecting with my friends
at all lately.
Isolating myself has been easier than
I sought out a friend.
who has become less of a
colleague and more of a friend
with each passing day.
I asked her to pray.
I didn’t say much.
But she heard me.
She didn’t even pray
right then and there, but I knew she would.
And in the wee hours of the morning,
I got my answer.
God answered me.
To confirm it I emailed some friends
Over the years I’ve been in the
habit of sending up “Prayer Flares”
much like a survivor lost at sea would do:
fire off a flare gun hoping to be rescued.
I never have to say much in these flares.
Sometimes all I’ve written was,
“Help. Please pray.”
But my friends have always been
faithful to pray and not pry for
details that I am unable or unwilling
My closest friends here my cry
and they pray.
And then I sit back
and wait for God
to do the heavy lifting.
God answers prayers.
Maybe not in the way we hope or expect…
But he always answers.
The earlier answer I’d received
was fine tuned throughout
the day as my friends prayed.
I KNEW my friends were praying for me
and I KNEW that God was answering
the prayers of many.
That lifted my mood
even if most of my circumstances
God answers prayers…
but he’s not Burger King.
I cannot always “have it my way”
with the convenience
of a fast food drive through.
He will answer in HIS time
according to HIS will.
and I have to believe that he will.
Today, I had another talk with that
frolleague. (Friend + Colleague?? Ok. Maybe not)
She didn’t just listen today.
She’s not a receptacle for all of my drama.
We had a two way conversation
where we both talked about things that are
creating stress for us.
We affirmed our friendship and
our total faith that God is in control.
This did more for us than all the advice
in the world could ever do
although the time for advice may come.
Right now? I’d dark outside.
I’m hungry not angry.
Rice is simmering in the rice cooker
waiting to be joined by my good friend
The Coke bottle is not going to explode tonight
and I’m not even worried about tomorrow.
Prayers of the many made sure of that.
When I was a Rhetoric major at Berkeley, I wrote a paper that scared the crap out of one of my Instructors. I titled it, “Suicide Is Painless” after the old theme song to that show M*A*S*H. It was a rather dark paper when I baldly stated that I didn’t think I’d live to see thirty. By that point, my mental illness was in full swing. I thought about suicide all the time. I attempted suicide twice. I didn’t really want to die, but it seemed like the only way to get the pain to stop. Living in my own skin was painful. I couldn’t control it and I couldn’t explain it. I just wanted my life to go away and take the pain with it. I kept thinking that I’d find a painless sure fire way to do it… one that even I couldn’t screw up. I didn’t want to end up a vegetable on life support.
There were a couple of attempted suicides while I was at Cal. One young disabled woman tossed herself off a building. She landed on somebody. It made all the papers. That seemed like such a horrible way to go but I did think about it. As an RA in the dorms I had the keys to the roof. I’d go up there and dare myself to jump. I’d stand on the ledge feeling like a coward for not being able to do it. I’d slink to my dorm room and drink cheap booze trying to make the feelings go away.
The suicidal ideation went away when I had my hysterectomy in 2010, but the thoughts that made me want to end it never have. To this day I cannot explain what goes in my head and all the well meaning advice won’t make it go away. It makes me feel crazy even though I’m not. Lately the dark thoughts have been building. God and I, we’ve been having conversations about death. For the record, I am not suicidal. I do not want to die. My life still hurts and I cannot understand how to live in my skin, but I persevere through life because it’s what Christians are supposed to do. My thoughts are more long term. Every day I get up and put on my pants one leg at a time. I go to work and pedal as fast as I can. I put on my “normal” face because for eight hours I can hold it together and look as normal as everybody else. And I will continue to do this until I’m a lot older. That is the conversation I have with God. I’ve got no immediate plans to kill myself, but I do not doubt that my life will end in suicide. Eventually. Unless God steps in and does something to hot wire my faith… I see no other outcome for my life and arguing with me won’t change this. But I give it a good 25-30 years. The things in my life that hurt? Cannot be fixed by man. Have I turned a blind eye to any of the good in my life? Not at all… but the presence of good does not eliminate the bad.
That’s one mistake people make. Assuming that the face they see is the real face. Just because a depressed person is able to acknowledge the good doesn’t mean the darkness isn’t still dark. All weekend I was free to grapple with God on this issue. Rumbling around in my empty life… I don’t have to pretend when I come home that I’m ok. God knows that I’m not. Being able to be real with him about THIS is what keeps me alive because most people can’t handle the real me… but God can. He doesn’t run from me or what I think or what I feel. I KNOW that Jesus is at the right hand of the Father interceding for me. I KNOW that the Holy Spirit is interceding for me in groans that defy words. It was their prayers that sustained me this weekend.
Which brings me to today. After having three very emotionally miserable days wondering if Maui was going to be devastated by hurricanes, my house held fast. I may seem faithless, but my faith is actually rather strong. I may have Bipolar Disorder… but the disorder is not me. Me? I want that abundant life Jesus promised. So, this morning, I got up. I put my pants on one leg at at time and went to work. By day’s end every button I have had been mashed and I just wanted to scream. Then I heard about Robin Williams. I was shocked. It’s when the happy ones off themselves that people should pause and take stock of their loved ones. If I had killed myself at any point over the last few years, it wouldn’t have surprised most people. I have a dark personality. His death makes me appreciate my life. It doesn’t change anything in my life but it makes me wish that there’d been people to listen to him and pray for him. All his fame and his wealth… his friends, family, and fans… none of that could save him. I do not know what his particular dragons were, but after a long life depression got the final word.
I do not want depression to have the final word in my life.
God, if he is truly the God whom I’ve worshiped and followed and loved and serve for all these years, must have the final word if my life on earth is to have had any meaning at all. The omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent LORD of Heaven and Earth has got to start speaking to me louder than Depression because when he does… everything will change. Robin finally got tired of pedaling faster. Today the world that loved him mourns. It didn’t have to be this way. I believe without doubt that prayer changes things, but it is not the depressed person who needs to “pray more.” It is the people who profess to love them… the people who are closest to them… the ones who can pray without being sucker punched by Depression. THOSE are the people who should pray and intercede because the depressed person generally can’t because they are getting hit by waves after waves of the darkest depression imaginable. As as the prayers of many are lifted to God’s ear… lives will change. There will come a time for quoting scripture verses and giving advice… but I personally doubt that any of those things would have saved Robin Williams.
Prayers, on the other hand, just might have.
There were NO flying cows.
And it looks like I’m stuck with a million rolls of toilet paper.
Yes, the wind kicked up enough to blow down a few trees…
but I didn’t get a glimpse of Oz.
The first of the uninvited guests was a no-show.
And my neighborhood only lost power for a blink of an eye.
My biggest issue with the storm?
In my haste to secure my deck furniture
I didn’t put my keys back in their regular spot.
They were nowhere to be found
when I had to leave for work.
I turned my entire house upside down
looking for them nearly making myself late.
I even dug through the trash!
I don’t know which disturbed me more:
The “double threat” of back to back hurricanes….
or the fact that my trash was full of McDonald’s packaging.
After 20 minutes of searching my cottage
I gave up and got a spare from the landlord.
Immediately found them on the window sill in the bathroom.
Who leaves car/house keys in the bathroom?
The whole thing made me think of the woman
who lost the coin in the bible.
She turned her house upside down too.
There’s a message here.
It’s on the tip of my mind…
And when I fully understand it
I would like to thank
for the storm that didn’t hit.
And that my “house”
is still standing.
And when the next
like a petulant child,
I will thank him
for that too!
We just finished stowing the deck furniture away. We’ve been warned that most injuries during hurricanes are caused by flying debris. Not sure what I’d do if my deck table went airborne. I keep having mental flashes of flying cows. Clearly, I watch WAY too many movies.
I’ve just finished filling up a five gallon tote in the shower because having to use my stash of bottled water to flush my toilet does not rank high on my hit parade. Not being able to flush my toilet at all ranks even lower.
My Sony pocket radio is so shiny new the I can see my reflection in it. The batteries are in and I will hear the latest news as it comes in. The million dollar question IS… do I really want to know? Two hurricanes headed this way? Maybe ignorance really IS bliss.
I even went through the McDonald’s drive through for dinner… because if it’s inaccessible during the storms, I at least have the greasy hug memory to last me for a while.
Iselle is supposed to come in later tonight between 9 and 10pm…. like an uninvited guest that makes a mess that you have to clean up. Julio is supposed to arrive over the weekend. Does that make him Iselle’s Plus One? Would that we could un-invite them both. It’s like the entire island is preparing for a party that nobody wants to attend.
Me? I’m ready. I am not afraid. I wish I weren’t alone… but what’s a single hermit girl to do? Now is were I pray. Be still. And trust God. Whether he has the storm hit us or miss us; whether my home is swept up to Oz or not affected at all…
God is still God. I may not always like what he does… but I always love who he is.