Psycohology of the unstable mind


The psychology of mental illness, that sounds like it contradicts its self, it’s the psychology that fixes mental illness.  Psychology is an academic and applied discipline that involves the scientific study of mental functions and behaviors.  It is the behaviors and the study of mental illness that leads to is cures, its medicines.  We know it is a chemical malfunction that creates the depression. It is a chemical malfunction that creates a cancer cell to grow.   But what kind of chemical malfunction takes a person to want to hurt oneself.  The process of the mentally ill seem to follow the same pattern.  We can see documentation, story after story of how people went from one level to another level to another level to cross into actions that are as unthinkable to a healthy person as they are to the unhealthy. The question then becomes, what is the underlying condition, problem, or situation to lead an unstable person to the next level of self-destruction?

When I was a little girl listening to the radio I couldn’t figure out why all the songs on the radio talked about love?  I was 10 I knew I was loved, I knew that I was in a safe place full of love.  Why were there all these songs about wanting love, getting love, losing love?  To put life in its grandiose terms, life is love.  The fruit of the spirit is;

Galatians 5:22-23

New International Version (NIV)

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

The fruits of depression are the opposite of Gods Fruits.  There is no peace or joy in depression, only sadness and hurt.  Forbearance, Kindness Goodness, is unattainable because of the pain in one’s heart that they can not see around.  Does the depressed person know they are loved by God, Yes they do but it does not stop undesirable actions that can not be controlled.  This leads to the next part.  gentleness and self-control.   Anger and disgust are the two most powerful emotions that grab onto the heart, it is the self-hatred that dominates all actions regardless if rational or not rational.  To cut ones self is an unnatural act, we naturally hate pain, and do anything to keep from being uncomfortable.  The rational of a depressed person in pain with in, wants to only match the pain on the outside by cutting at ones own skin, or any other harmful actions.  It is an act of hatred, self loathing, and the person unbalanced sees every thing in the house as a potential weapon to their inward pain. Kitchen knives, scissors, razors, any thing with an edge and the depressed individual is looking at what a normal person would see as an unsafe item, the depressed person is making a mental note to remember that ‘thing’ could come in handy when the state of mind becomes clouded with pain, and panic.

Its interesting; when you go on vacation, we go camping you set up and you put up your tarp, you relax have a beer and spend the next hour soaking in the peace and joy of being in nature and enjoying a beer, your reward for hard work.  If you relax your body with yoga it’s not a 5 minute thing, it’s a process of breathing, concentrating, relaxing, it is not a sudden emotion or state of mind.  When you become angry, or feel in danger or have a panic attack it is sudden, powerful and on some levels thrilling.  The depressed person who cuts finds it a relief to be able to punish oneself in  another way, to satisfy the angry voices in the head.  The thrill leaves when the person moves beyond the crisis and wakes up the next morning seeing the destruction the person has caused.  Embarrassed, and disgusted with the actions the person falls even more into a hole.

It is not a isolated development.  If you read blogs, stories, books, of people and the depression journey they have been on, the self destruction is bound to turn up sometime.  How do you stop it. grab the person by the hands and don’t let go.  No human spoken word can cure it, Can the word of God stop it I know that he can sometimes I don’t feel it, but the forgiveness is always available.  As Jesus prayed  over 2000 years ago “Lord forgive them for they do not know what they are doing”

till next time………………………………

Back to Reality


Fishing weekend over – it was great, I so enjoyed sitting on the water, soaking in the sun, and hanging out.  I did not catch the first fish 😦 but my husband caught the first two, so one for me and one for him.  My friend says he caught more but I don’t think so!  It will be our ongoing argument till the next time we go fishing.

Back to reality, work and all that goes along with it.  Its been a frustrating week and its only Tuesday, but that is strictly related to work issues. Nothing earth shattering just the usual, difficult people or people getting in your way from doing your work.  Just like any other work environment across the country. 

A few days till doctor day.  I am sure it will be not big thing, but my curiosity is still there wondering what is what.  I just hope I can find out something — other than “yes you have major depression and psychosis”, I know!! I want options, or maybe I will find out there are no options, suck it up butter cup and hope like hell those around me can tollerate the strange me.

This week I have been very tired.  My husband keeps finding me asleep on the couch, in the evening, in the middle of the night, sleeping in past the alarm, I’m like a sleepy cat, you find me anywhere curled up in a ball.   I can’t seem to get enough and then I have been sleeping at lunch too.  Being tired makes things I have to do feel overwhelming, and then I get anxious.   Needless to say my work outs this week have been sad.  Monday I did a full cardio workout and my buddy I work out with was like “wow I have never seen you struggle so much” ya thanks!  I know I am whining but I am tired –ok– 😉  

As Gilda Radner said “there is always something”.   Some days I sleep, some weeks I don’t.  Life is a series of ups and downs, hurry up and wait.   If you really think about it what is normal, I would like to substitute my reality with normality, but really who knows what that is.

On the up side, it was my birthday and my daughter who is a typical 16 year selfcentered teenager, was so sweet to me and huggy on my birthday it is still making me smile.  I think I have told her how much she means to me and how happy she has made me.  Happy sigh! it was nice.

till next time…………………….

Unseen Illness


Sitting yet in another waiting room…This one is full.  I am at the hospital lab for blood tests and an electrocardiogram.  Its been two weeks since I start the new increase in the pills.  So now I get the test results back in 6 weeks when I  see my doctor.  Try this, try that, but to be honest as I sit here with 25 other people waiting my turn, I wonder why we didn’t do this two years ago?? Through all this trial and error, this is the first time I have had blood work done.  You would have thought I would have had it done first.  Now I have it because the increase in the dose of drugs has side effects that can affect my heart ( somedays I feel like I am jumping from the pot to the fire).  I should be here for another 35 minutes before I see a nurse to take my blood and ekg.  I have already been here for 10 minutes.  I had to fast this morning, and that means no coffee..I love my morning coffee. A unstable person waiting in office for 40 minutes, no coffee – who knows what could happen!! (a little stab at humor)  The lady taking the paperwork looks like if she smiles her face would crack.  I can tell from watching her (and Lord knows I have time to watch) she does not like her job, or does she not like people.  I feel like saying hey dear you have a job be happy, maybe she is suffering like me – and in that case I wouldn’t like dealing with all these people too.

I am feeling a little better today.  I shut my phone off  Monday night I didn’t want to talk to anyone. Tuesday was better, I slept last night – took sleeping pills — it isn’t a solid refreshing sleep but it was sleep and that makes things better.  I will not be taking them tonight – I don’t take them two days in a row. 

I sent my Mother an email asking for forgiveness for not staying on Sunday for supper.  I really didn’t want to be around people.  I told her we had things to do and couldn’t be there and I was so sorry for it.  She emailed me back and told me if I get off the fast track I am living on and take some family time I would be less stressed.  She also said I need to grab these moments to spend time with family cause the time will come where there will be no more moments.  I agree with her on the Moments argument, but you can’t do it all and that is why I came home we had other responsibilities and couldn’t be there.  She thinks I am living life to fast and thus my mental instability.  If  I had a broken leg I would get more leeway in my decisions to do or not do stuff, but this unseen illness is disrespected as “all in your head” (which it is) but I say ‘in your head’ with all the sarcasm I can create, because that is how people who don’t understand or people give it no respect, respond. 

A lady I know was diagnosed with Cancer 10 years ago.  It was not terminal and it was self-contained so there was no drug therapy needed, just an operation to remove it and that was it. I asked her when it was all said and done, what was the one thing that drove her nuts about the whole process.  She said that the one thing that surprised her the most and bugged her was that everyone who found out she had cancer treated her like she was dead.  People thought “well  cancer kills so she will be gone soon, what a shame”.   Some people, who know I have major depression, talk to me like I am two, or in a way that will “not upset me” cause they again don’t understand.   Or every time they see me it’s like –“So how are you doing” with eyes that express pity mixed with a bit horror at the prospect of me flipping out and grabbing a sharp object and killing myself on the spot.  At work I confided in a fellow christian who has been feeling guilty having to give up some committees she was on at church cause she can’t handle it ALL anymore, as she deals with her menopause.  Everyday at least twice a day she asks me “So how Are you doing?”   The devil in me wants to say – “well not good I am going out at lunch and jumping in front of a bus”  That does happen, its nothing to joke about, suicide is a very serious thing.  The reason I bring this up at all is that this Illness and it unlike cancer or any other disease effects your whole life, and people don’t take it seriously.  

In my Mother’s case – “you are involved in too much and you have to get off the fast track life and relax then I won’t need to be on medication and you can get a grip of your life. ” In her case when she faced menopause,  she just decided that she was just going to be happy and that was that!  Other people see it as PMS gone crazy, “oh its just one of those moods” go play guitar and distract yourself it will be fine” .” Go for a run”, “just suck it up buttercup.”   Or “oh she is angry and moody she must hate me!  What is with her? ”  (sister-in-law’s response to a really down weekend I was having)  Or “wow she is a little crazy  and acting weird, just stay away from her”   If I had cancer they would just think I was going to die and leave me alone.  With depression people disregard you, try to ‘save’ you, or pity you.  It’s enough to make you depressed !! (joke)

So as I go through the process of doctor apt’s, blood tests, dealing with life, family, kids, husbands, in-laws, work and trying to hold it together you have this back lash of how people expect you to be and when you don’t measure up they criticise you.  Their expectations are to be witty and funny and bubbly like always.  I can not do it.

 

till next time……………..

 

Tuesday, Pondering Party Day


After taking Tuesday to decide if I was going to follow the doctor’s advice, rules, and medication changes or stay the course.   I had decided to stay the course.  I wasn’t going to give in.  I am in control, so I thought.   I had a great dinner with my friends and husband and then went to a concert down town, I love to go down town.  So much fun, I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed myself.   Two hours, plus of listening to great music with great friends.  It got down to the last 20-30 minutes of the concert I sat down for a minute, and I felt a wave of depression tsunami me.  It came on super fast and frightening way.  I haven’t been frightened in a while.  I am sitting there and my melting mind thought about cutting.  I was thinking there must be a place where no one would know.  This looks so stupid in print.  I can’t believe the idea rushed into my mind, rolled around and was entertained for a bit.  It was a surreal moment in time.  My mind fell into my boots and it was like I was eavesdropping on a conversation.  This seem to last 5 or 10 minutes, and then I was jolted back to normality when I looked around and realized this isn’t a conversation around me, everyone was standing, singing, dancing to the music, the conversation was in my head.  To say I was floored is a sever understatement.  I prayed a silent prayer to God to take this thing away, take the thought away and restore me.  I sat for a moment and jumped up and got myself back into the night.   I was not going to let this hell ruin my night.  I managed to get myself together  after a bit and enjoyed the rest of the night.

As I lay in bed I was very tired, had a few glasses of wine earlier and fell into a toss and turn night, full of weird dreams and restlessness.  I woke this morning and didn’t think of it.  Work, get up get to it, get your daughter to school get lunches in the right hands and off to the office.  It wasn’t till lunch when I had a chance to breath and then remember the evening.  It seemed like a weird dream.  It was a random horrible thought.  It is not a consideration.  I mention this episode because it is just that an episode but it also clinched my decision to follow the doctors medication, rules, follow ups for the next 8 weeks and see where I am.  I guess maybe it was a Blessing I experienced;  when and how I did. I was with safe people, safe place, not alone, and with God’s help pull through it.  I haven’t had any thoughts like that for a long time now, so it seems strange now, but maybe it was a good thing.  I started taking the new meds this morning — so look out next week will be a rocky one.  You can’t mess with these drugs, and any little adjustment sends you over the edge.  The Psyc Doctor called my condition Major Depression Disorder–see definition from web m.d.

” What Is Major Depressive Disorder?

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, major depressive disorder is characterized by a combination of symptoms that interfere with a person’s ability to work, sleep, study, eat, and enjoy once-pleasurable activities.

There are times you may feel sad, lonely, or hopeless for a few days. But major depression — clinical depression — lasts longer and is disabling. It can prevent you from functioning normally, and the disorder can also cause the subject to harm ones self, and suicidal thougths, if left untreated. ”

I don’t like the word Disorder it should be Major Depressive Mind out of Order,  Or MDMOOO for short.  🙂

As far as timing goes it’s a good time to do it / it’s a bad time to do it.  I have lots on my plate.  My Mother is going in for cataract surgery tomorrow,  she just got over a serious bug a week and a bit ago.  I only found out yesterday about the bug.  My idiotic brother knew but figured I was an hour and half away so why bother me. I live too far away.  He got an unpleasant reply from me on that point. I can not express how angry I am about it in this blog  because I wish not to swear in it – but you get the picture.  I have a couple of cousins who are ill one is coming around, one just in for surgery. My son is moving home.  I can’t wait, but it will take a little time to for all of us to adjust to living together again. More stress.   It makes me want to hop in the van and drive till I run out of gas or come to an ocean.  Life is not something to run from so I will sleep tonight, take the meds, work out, do a major cut back on drinking,  go to work, cook for the family, and do what I can to live the life God wants me to.

Just re reading that last paragraph,  very selfish, forgive me.  It’s a mixture of venting, and convincing.  Venting about how my family drives me nuts, and convincing myself I am on the right track.  Will let you know.

till next time. . . . . . . . . . .

monday


Weekend over and back to work today– it’s going to be a busy one. Lots on the agenda at work and at home.  I leave for a work retreat over night Thursday night so that will be fun.   It was a good weekend,  spent some time outside pulled out the patio furniture – maybe a little early but seeing it makes me feel better.  Saturday was sunny and I spent most of the day cleaning out gardens picking up sticks.  Sunday cleaning up inside and putzing around, and had a nap, on the couch like a cat in the sun.  Time with friends, time with family, time with husband, went to church,  all the way it should be.

I was a little low this weekend. I haven’t been sleeping so I know that means watch out for the sadness incase it rolls in like a sudden fog off the water.    It did.   I turned my attention to praising God and ignoring the negative and repeating the positive.  Did the sadness just disappear, no,  I felt it, I just tried to work through it. Cleaned up stuff, did laundry, tried to take my mind off of it. In the long run I did ok. It’s just hanging on. Its Monday and I had another night of interrupted sleep.  I am back to a stepped up workout routine so we shall see if that helps.  I did 5 workouts last week and it didn’t help much, surely it will this week.

I prayed tonight with my Pastor his wife and my husband. It was a wonderful prayer time. God was with us and it was an evening of honesty and prayers of thanks.   It is a real blessing to sit with your best friends hold hands and pray.

An author; whose books we 4 have read, son, committed suicide. I didn’t know the boy but it strikes hard at your heart, only 27, good christian family – no drug abuse,  just died by his own hand.  It strikes hard at someone who suffers from depression.  A depression sufferer understands that the pain and anguish of depression that never leaves you.   Some days its better, some days its anguish.   It is a companion that never leaves your side. It is at the ready, as tight as your shadow.
In discussing things last night I don’t think some of them understood how when you are good you are never what you were, and when you are down you can never effectively communicate how dark and lost you are.   I was good last night but there were 5 of us praying I was #4 my depression #5.   Its like watching students in the hallway at school- they always have a knapsack on their back – mine is the weight of depression.

In the course of the evening, after I got home, I came clean about some of the things I had encountered over the past two years with my husband.  I hadn’t really told him that there were times that I thought about suicide, or the extent that I punished myself with not eating and belittled myself when I was down and couldn’t “pull up my boot straps” and get on with it.  I had told him that I had seen the line of suicide – and I did, I never thought how.   In truth; I did not think how to do it, but the consideration that death is a way to end the anguish  and how the line more encircled me instead of  just standing in front of me was true.  It is frightening today to think how far gone I was and how my husband, unbeknownst to him, saved my life one evening when I was alone in the dark.  Today it seems like a fantastical dream, but when I read my journal from those days, they reveal a death of spirit, and cornering of darkness, and a lost frightened girl.

The depression is the same today as yesterday, so how can it be different. It’s not drugs, it all goes back to one afternoon not long ago, laying on a couch looking at the clouds going by a window thinking I could have this for the rest of my life. I have harped on this before, but I have a strange peace from it and it has held on ever since then. The desperation of the illness seems to lessen. It has made it a part of my life. As I go through each wave the next down isn’t a surprise. I am not thinking on every up swing – “ok feeling good this is it”, only to be disappointed when the next down turn arrives. The second thing that seems to have changed for me is the words I read in the bible, Jesus always says when he arrives anywhere or an angel says when they are delivering a message in the bible, “don’t be afraid” Those words are said 380 times. You would think that we would be able to rely on those words. The dips I have had this week I have been telling myself “do not be afraid, and my trust in God”  seems to have increased so as the devil slithers around me and wants to strike fear in me I have not been afraid cause God is in control, Lord knows I am not. I maybe have come to terms with the fact that I have loss control of my mushy mind and set my expectations lower. Acceptance seems to have made a difference – for now.
Next once I get the specialist report, and decide my next drug plan, it is my plan to get off some of the more harmful drugs and keep on ones that are a little more – body friendly. Messing with them is never a good idea but I want to feel more like me and be able to cry at a good movie, love my husband a little more fully, and not feel the good feelings be pushed down with the bad feelings. First the doctor has to come through for me!! If I ever see that report.

till next time………………..

The truth of pain.


Lord do not forsake me, for only by your hand is there clarity. For my mind is a jumble of mixed up thoughts. A pile of mixed up words. Darkness of confusion. As I sit in church and look at your cross I want to see the clarity your word. If God is reaching for man and man is suffering in a pain that the painkillers won’t heal and the doctors do not know how to cure, that the wine does not numb, how do you look at God and see his love. Do I not believe in it? My head says yes I believe in his Love but the pain of suffering can not help but make you think that you are being punished. Forgive my unforgiveness and unbelief, for the pain of the confused mind overshadows truth and love and creates a sink hole of darkness. As I take the body and the blood and kneel at the table of God, my mind is a swirl of light, dark, You want to trust but you feel punished, yet you ask for forgiveness. I do not ask for God to take this pain anymore, I have asked and it is still here. I don’t ask cause I fear disappointment. I know in my head that God’s timing is not mine, but God what ever I am to learn from this, how thick am I that I have not learned it, so this pain can be taken from me. A swirl of thoughts as I kneel at God’s table ….I eat, I drink, I ask for forgiveness, repent, yet when I leave, I do not go in peace. Its no where to be found, and that is the pain. A tight heart of hurt, a grip that never loosens, Drugs that numb you and a mind that thoughts are blank.

till next time……

Strangers and best friends


I mentioned that I have been putting up with a lot of negative attitude towards depression lately.  It is truly unbelievable the names I have been called over the past couple of weeks from people who do not know I am suffering from depression and the demons I am fighting.   The stigma that goes along with this is unbelievable.  I knew about depression and the demons people faced before I became one of them. I knew it was tough and I knew it was something they could not control.  But like the old saying goes “walk a mile in their shoes” .  When did our society become so anti-compassionate?  Or maybe its me. I wear my heart on my sleeve and I have to stop, I am too fragile to just continue to put it out there.  I do not have a poker face and I need to work on it, cause people just stomp on people.  Everyone seems to be a critic.

So my question tonight is. Has society, due to instant media, instant gratification become instantly intolerant to people around them?

I grew up on a small town, on a farm.  When someone when through tough times everyone chipped in and helped.  When my Dad was killed, 16 years ago,  the day after people just showed up with food.  We had so much food that we filled two fridges and a table on the front porch, It was winter so it was cold, but thank God cause we couldn’t eat it fast enough.

Or is it conditioning from TV.  I have a teenaged daughter, she doesn’t watch them any more but there was a time where she watched shows that were like the movie Mean Girls.  It drove me nuts cause I hated the way people talked on these shows.  Even a show like Glee, and the music is cool, there is this underlying theme of ” I am going to get you” in the show.  Have we conditioned society to this way of thinking?

So in a nut shell here is how I am feeling and thinking at 12:30 Saturday night,I guess its really Sunday morning.  I have had so many negative comments, cutting comments, made towards me in the past few weeks.  I look at this sentence and think — my readers are going to think I am a bitch! ( please forgive the word, but it fits ) I really am not.  I feel so deeply for those who suffer.  It breaks my heart to see people in pain, and people who are lost and in need of the one true God.  Just like me.  But people, have never understood me, I wear my heart on my sleeve, and it gets broke.  Maybe that is the problem pure and simple.  I put the heart out there cause I feel for people and people tramp on it, usually due to their own demons they are fighting.    I am not doing that any more.  At least with those who are family or people I know well.  I will put it out there for the student at my highschool who cuts themselves, or the student who is suffering from anorexia or the student who is suffering or hurting, cause someone has to put it out there for them.  They just want to be heard, they just want someone – esp a adult to give a dam.

My heart hurts so much, it is such a deep pit of pain,  except for my best friends – I will not put my heart out there to be trampled on. I just can’t do it anymore.  I will not admit to those who know I am suffering cause some of them don’t get it.  I know they want to help but don’t know what to say.  So I will admit nothing, let them off the hook and avoid stupid insensitive comments. To those who cutting comments have come my way lately– I will never admit I have an illness — to do so admits that I am less than I am and it also is something they can’t wrap their heads around and I do not what their useless sympathy and pathitic looks in their eyes as they think— Oh brothers can’t she just count her blessing s and get over it!  If that was something I could do — do you think I would be on the heavy duty medication  I am on, and in the pain I feel in my soul?

till next time…………………