My Journal September 17th to 24th 2009

My Journal September 17th 2009

Last night when I was done with my journal I laid down to do my relaxation techniques and go to sleep, and I got through the breathing and the muscle relaxation without any problems. But when it came to the visualization exercises I was again unable to maintain focus. After I caught myself and reminded myself to stay on track a few times, I finally just let my thoughts drift.

I've heard many people say when they are depressed that they want to just crawl into a hole and die as though they are a cat that has been hit by a car and is using the last of it's energy to crawl to the side of the road so they can let themselves die.

I don't think I truly understood that until last night. I wouldn't really say that I am officially depressed. But I do think that right now I am experiencing a mixed bipolar phase with some depression symptoms.

This last year came flashing before my eyes as though I had indeed been hit by a car and was about to die. Snippets of sound and pictures began moving through my mind at rapid pace.

Finding the thing that ended my marriage of ten years, moving out of my husband's house and into my friends house, him calling to tell me he had a new girlfriend,moving my Grandma in to an adult foster home as her dementia progressed to the point that she no longer was able to be alone,meeting the new girlfriend and not approving of her influence on my daughter's life, trying a new relationship of my own and failing, my friend's landlord not approving of our sublet situation and forcing me to move out, my Grandma passing away, moving in with my ex husband's parents, starting my website, moving out of his parents house and in with a stranger from Craiglist in my desperation all hit me at once. But I think it felt more like a semi than a car.

And I laid there feeling like a cat dieing on the side of the road and began to cry. Partially out of grief and partially out of relief because I also realized how long it had been since I had cried,and was thankful that I no longer do it every day. Also because as messed up as this last year or so has been, it is for the most part, behind me.

I slept a lot today as the depression side of this phase got stronger. I got up and took Charlotte to her bus stop, did my work out, and crawled back into bed. I got up a few times after that, but I didn't get up and stay up till way after 2. I barely got any work done today, and i didn't even bother with my website or my treatment plan except for my journal.

I hope tomorrow is better.

My Journal September 18th 2009

Last night I slept pretty well. I think the regular morning exercise is helping to teach my body that the morning is when I am awake, and night is when I sleep.

After my big cry night before last, I think I am starting to feel better. I'm still feeling some symptoms of depression, but as of yet I am not experiencing those symptoms to a completely debilitating effect. I am still taking care of my responsibilities, hygiene, etc. but I am struggling with some exhaustion during the day, as well as a lack of interest in things. If I can manage to maintain my schedule and find positive stimulus to focus on, I believe I can come out of this.

My website is getting very little attention. My Journal pages are the only thing I have worked on in a few days. I feel this overwhelming need to make sure that things are done around the house, and that the animals are taken care of. I am also focusing more on exercise knowing that the more I do, the greater effect it will have on my depression symptoms. I had a great workout this morning, and I can already see some results in my legs and the way my clothes fit. I will be ready to focus more on my diet very soon.

I received my missing unemployment payment, and the application for my emergency extension. As soon as I get that in and it gets approved I will feel financially stable again. I still need to call Allsup to apply for SDI.

Imar came to get Charlotte today and brought his girlfriend with him. It made me upset because he knows how I feel about seeing them together. She brought me a rose and thanked me for praying for her, which made things worse because I was unable to mask my irritation and I was embarrassed that I was unable to accept her thank you with the grace that it deserved. I was angry with him .not her..but I think I made her uncomfortable , which made me feel like crap!

I did get to do some shopping though, and that always makes me feel a little better. I took what I was able to spend in cash and only used that so I would be unable to overspend.

I hope I continue to sleep as well as I did last night.

My Journal September 19th 2009

Today is actually September 23rd 2009. I haven't been keeping up on my journal for last few days because I fell into a depression and simply haven't had the motivation.

I think it was triggered when my ex husband brought his girlfriend to my house to pick up Charlotte. I really felt bad about the whole thing, and I don't know how to respond to it.

When using cognitive therapy to solve this problem, I am aware of my distorted thoughts. I start blaming him for the way I feel. Then I often try to shift and place blame on myself. The truth is, in this particular situation, I don't really feel that there is a solution. Wherever I try to place the blame, it rings true.

His presence brings up anger and resentment as well as feelings of inadequacy in myself.

The idea of seeing him with another woman that he is having a successful relationship with, and sending my daughter to live with them each weekend hurts beyond any hurt I have experienced before.

In my mind I keep "shoulding" because I have a problem with the idea that he gets to be with my daughter for even a second after he told me he never wanted her, and he didn't know how to be a dad. I also struggle with the idea that he has a family with another woman when that was all I ever really wanted for us. I keep thinking "I shouldn't have to watch this, and he shouldn't have happiness after what he did to me and our daughter."

I am documenting this because I feel it is important to illustrate the fact that I still struggle, and I still have manic, depressive, and mixed episodes when there are triggers present.

I thought about just trying to remember what happened over the last few days, and trying to pretend that I had kept up on my journal and my treatment plan this whole time as well as kept up on all of my responsibilities and personal needs.

But I don't think that would be fair to you the reader. So this is what really happened.

My Journal September 20th 2009

Today I felt sad and unmotivated all day. I got up really late, and got a late start on my exercise routine. I felt embarrassed about doing my stair step routine at the park, because it was the middle of the day on a Saturday before I got out there, and the park was full of people. So I just walked around the park four times.

Michelle helped me dye my hair, and we spent the day "primping" in preparation of our plan to go to a bar this evening for a girls night out.

I felt really good with my new hair color, and being able to dress up. While we were getting ready we sipped on margaritas all day,(I had one and a half) and then when we were at the bar, she continued to drink beer, and I had two shots of Jagermeister that I nursed throughout the evening between singing karaoke and socializing with people at the bar.

I felt really good until I realized that Michelle had gotten way too drunk and wanted to drive home after she said that we would walk if she couldn't drive. She had worn high heels to the bar and said her feet hurt too much to walk.

So I had to make the choice between putting myself in danger by getting into a car with a drunk woman, and putting myself in danger by walking home alone after 1 am.

I chose to walk.

I was really angry and stayed online talking to my IM (Instant Messenger) friend Robyn. He talks to me almost every night, and is a really good friend even though I have never met him and most likely never will. He made me feel better until he went to bed, and then I talked to another IM friend that I've recently met on MySpace. He made me feel better too,I skipped doing my journal and I got a decent nights sleep.

My Journal September 21st 2009

Michelle must have felt bad, because she came into my room at 9:45 and insisted that I get up and watch tv with her. I went down for my workout, and by the time I got back, she had gone back to bed.

That made me incredibly angry, and I spent the day cleaning and tending to the animals.

My friend Michael (who was more than a friend shortly after my ex got his new girlfriend, but is just my friend now) texted me to tell me about one of our favorite comedians being on a show he was watching.

I asked him how his weekend was and told him that mine was kind of crappy, and he said that he was headed to California for a week.

That added to my sadness because it reminded me that he will be moving there soon, and I fear that we will not longer be friends when he does.

There is a lot more behind my feelings regarding that, but I don't really wish to go into it right now. All I can really say, is that I have a lot to say to him, and even more questions to ask him, but I fear that I may never get a chance to really talk to him again and that even if I do, it won't have much of an impact on the way things are with us.

I didn't really do much for the rest of the day. I didn't even take a shower. And when it came time to go to bed,I again skipped doing my journal and relaxation techniques. I spent a few hours going back to my old habit of trying to rewrite the past. This was definitely depression.

My Journal September 22nd 2009

I woke up this morning still feeling really sad. I got my daughter to the bus stop, and did my workout, but then I came back home and feeling really exhausted I went back to bed. I woke up after 2 in the afternoon, and felt even worse because I had wasted most of my day.

I cleaned the house a bit, while feeling angry that I was off of my schedule, and that I had gone out drinking the other night. I really do feel that I would be better off without that type of thing in my life.

I also felt that I might not be able to convince Michelle that I don't want to do that anymore without making her angry, because she had stated to me that she felt I was her best friend and she had no one else. I have this feeling she will be asking me to join her in that type of thing again, and she doesn't seem to be very responsive to assertiveness. I will try to be assertive about this anyway.

Again, I didn't do much else, except clean and cook dinner. Again, I didn't take a shower. I feel that it's important for me to let people know that lack of hygiene is a symptom of my depression. I know that I am not the only who struggles with this.

I think it is my way of subconsciously punishing myself. Depression has been defined as anger turned inward. I am certainly angry with myself for the way my relationships have failed, and I have continued to put myself in situations where I can get hurt. However, I feel it is time for me to recognize that my relationships did not fail because of me alone, and I have always made decisions based on the information and resources I have. So it is time to let go of my anger and forgive myself. I am only human.

I skipped doing my journal again, and went to bed repeating my old habit of trying rewrite the past, like I had done the night before.

My Journal September 23rd 2009

I was still depressed today, but I felt a little better. I did end up sleeping quite a bit, but maybe that is my bodies way of dealing with my exhaustion. I just have to be careful not to sleep too long, because I found a study that said too much REM sleep could cause deeper depression. Funny how it is self sustaining like that.

I decided to do something about my loneliness, and I got on craigslist to look at the strictly platonic personals section. I have learned that most people who post there don't know the meaning of the word platonic, but I did find a few ads from people wanting text/IM buddies. I answered two of the ads...we'll see how that goes.

I pushed myself through the rest of the day, and at the end of the day Sammy IMed me and asked how I was doing. I told her how depressed I was, and expressed my concern that I wasn't at all motivated to bathe myself. I told that I had lost motivation to do anything except clean the house, and that even my website seemed to be on the back burner, because all I am really doing is adding my journal entries. She told me to get into the shower and tell her how I felt when I was done.

That is why it is important to have people that you know and trust that are willing to help you when you really need it. That little push was all I needed to motivate me, and I did feel much better when I got out of the shower.

My Journal September 24th 2009

After doing my journal entry last night, I slept really well! However , when I woke up, I felt like doing NOTHING and skipped my exercise routine. I took Charlotte to the bus stop, and went right back to bed.

When I woke up, I got to work on the house. Michelle got home really late, and I ordered pizza for dinner.

I met one of the people on craigslist, and we texted each other for most of the night. For the purpose of my journal I will call him Doug. He seems like a really nice guy, and I'm glad that I took the risk and responded to his ad. Hopefully I will continue to enjoy trading texts with him.

My Journal September 25th-30th 2009