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Lightboxes and unexpected benefits

I've been using my lightbox for almost 2 weeks now. I don't really see a change in my mood, but I have had two unexpected benefits that go toward making my life a little easier. My routine in the morning is now get up at 6:30 (or there about on the weekends), go the bathroom, take my meds and then sit in front of the lightbox. I haven't missed a dose of my meds since I started the therapy. I may not be getting better, but by taking my meds everyday, I'm at least assured of not making it worse by forgetting my meds.

The second benefit is that I haven't been late for work since I started back from my vacation. Although I still piddle around in the morning, I'm up and moving at 7:00ish and getting out the door right around 7:30. I might walk in at 8:00 or 8:01, but that isn't late in my book. Worrying about trying to get to work on time wasn't helping my mood, so again, unexpected benies!

The problem with sitting somewhat still for 30 minutes in morning is that I have time to think. And right now that is a bad thing. I start wondering if the pain in the shoulder is really a heart attack in the making and how I'll never amount to anything and else be stuck in a horrible life, etc. Hence the Angry Birds playing or Mahjong playing. I do do some meditation first thing after I sit down. I found this app when I had my Ipod and there actually several other apps by this group, Meditation Oasis. The first one I tried and liked was Relation and Rest Meditations. I've used this several times. I haven't downloaded it to my new phone, but I found that they have a few others, Simply Being Guided Meditation and Walking Meditation. They have a few others, but those are the 3 I'm most interested in. They are each $.99, so they are cheap for the amount of time I will use them. I've been using the Simply Being Guide Meditation since I bought it. The thing I like about all three is that you can set the time (5, 10, 20, 30 minutes), you can also choose music, rain, ocean and stream. I like the rain and the ocean sounds. The woman who speaks has a nice calm voice and I prefer guided meditations because it helps keep me focused (always an issue with me). Although she says to close your eyes, I can't do that with the lightbox. I stare at a corner of my desk and use that as a focus point. I'm curious to see if I end up being able to extend my time as the weeks go on.

I've got to get back to journaling about my food. I have been all over the place with my eating. While I haven't made an New Year's resolutions, I am trying to get back on track with my eating and journaling.

I need to go to the grocery, but can't until Wednesday (don't get paid until Friday). I'm running out of things both at work and at home so things are going to be interesting as I am forced to use the larder.

1 mini whole wheat bagel with PB&J


Left over Chicken strips from Applebees (2)
Left over french fries from Applebees
Honey mustard sauce from Applebees
1 Mini Take 5 candy bar


I have no idea what I will have for dinner. It will depend on what I feel like fixing when I get home.

I am trying to cut back on my coke use again. I went a lot nuts over my break and I've got to cut back. What I want to do is between every coke I drink I drink a glass of water. It is more than an 8 oz (probably more like 10-12 oz). If nothing else, that means I get 2 glasses of water a day. I might try to remember to have one in the evening. Maybe I'll pour it out and sit it with my meal instead of grabbing 2 cokes and only drinking 1.

I'm also trying to remember to make my turkey sandwich at night, right after I get home. I've been eating Giant Eagle's Maple Turkey, with a slice of 2% American cheese on a sweet whole wheat bun. I add chips and 1 or 2 mini candy bars. It's not great, but it could be a lot worse. I have been trying to let myself eat out on Friday's (One can only handle so much turkey before you start gobbling). I did good last week, but this is a new week, so we'll see. I had leftovers from last Friday today, so when I get home, I'll need to make my sandwich, along with whatever I end up making for myself.

Boy did I do some walking today. I bought some stuff for one of the faculty members and it was in my trunk. We went out to my car this afternoon, got it out and trucked it back to the office. I also ended up having to clear out a paper jam (and add paper to the copier) and go up to the fiscal service center to use the college credit card to order pizza for the grad student seminar. Then I had to take everything down to the classroom. This is a whole lot more walking that I normally do. I made it. I'm working on not slumping, especially when I'm tired and my back hurts. I try to imagine that there is a string coming out of the top of my head and that is what is holding me up. It's hard when my back hurts from the weight I'm carrying. Which makes me depressed,which makes me want to eat to hide away from the depression...do you see a pattern here.

When I'm at work, I'm good about not eating. I might be hungry but if it isn't first thing in the morning/lunch time, I usually wait. Unfortunately today I haven't had enough and I'm hungry. But it is so close to going home to eat I don't want to eat anything until I get home. Thankfully I don't have to stop anywhere tonight so I can go straight home and fix dinner. The more I think about it the more I think I will do eggs, cheese, onions, and maple sausage wrapped in a tortilla and covered in salsa. It's easy, filling and not that messy for me to make.

Although the BCS National Championship game is tonight and I'd love to stay up to watch the whole thing, it doesn't start until 9:00 so it won't be over until after midnight. I'll set the TV to go to sleep and probably fall asleep to Brent Musburger and Kirk Heibstrait (sp?) calling the game. I don't really care either way, they are both SEC teams and I hate the SEC (mostly since the Big 10 is SEC's bitch)...Change of plans. E called me up and invited me to her place to watch the game. And she's cooking. Don't really care what, but if I don't have to cook that is a bonus! So, I'm heading over there for a while. Don't know how long I'll stay, probably just until the game starts and then head home (since I turn into a pumpkin after 9:00, god I've become my mother).

I'd better end before I a) write a novel and b) my computer crashes because it's thinking hard about it.

Getting back in the saddle

So the holidays are over. It wasn't a bad holiday. I went home Christmas Eve and then drove back home Christmas Eve. Mom seemed to be in a mood to pick an argument (not that she would admit it)and I decided that leaving was the wisest choice. I got the smartphone I had asked for (Motorola Triumph) and went through several crazy days trying to get Virgin Mobile to port over my home number. I'm trying out not having a landline. As someone who remembers when AT&T was broken into the "Baby Bells" and those big old black rotary phones, it is a scary proposition. I figure if I don't like not having a landline, I can always call AT&T had have them install a single line phone with no bells & whistles (except caller ID, love that).

I had the days between Christmas and the start of the new year/quarter off. I have to say, I got a ton of things done. In fact, I'm rather surprised and shocked just how much I got done. I put up plastic on all of the windows (and patio door), cleaned my bedroom, cleaned the desk off in my bedroom (mostly), set up the lightbox I bought, cleaned my computer desk off, cleaned my kitchen table off (it had piles of stuff), cleaned out the pantry cabinets, made sloppy joes, chocolate chip cookies, make the dough for sugar cookies (but haven't baked them), made a cheesecake (peanut butter cup and yes, it was as awesome as it sounds) and AND did all the dishes. Throw in doing the laundry twice, playing on the computer alot and taking a nap about once a day, I'd say I had a full week.

But here is the thing...I feel horrible. The Friday before Christmas, I was seeing my ED (eating disorder, not the other ED) psychologist, J, and when he asked me how I was (hadn't seen me in over a month), my response was "I...suck" I thought I was going to say "My life sucks" but my brain overruled my mouth, or maybe it was the other way around. Needless to say, he was not thrilled with that response. We talked about where I am in my life. I listed all the things I was doing, good and not-so-good and it was pretty obvious that the good really out numbered the not-so-good. So, if there was more good in my life, why did I still feel so crappy. Part of it was that I had forgotten my antidepressants on Tuesday and I knew that was a big reason why I was feeling so crappy. J thinks it is good that I can make the connection between forgetting my meds and not feeling so good several days later. I said that I was thinking about putting a note on the mirror in the bathroom, right at nose height that said "If you are reading this, have you taken your meds?" He liked that! I seem to have figured out a new system for taking my meds, but more about that later. I told him about ordering the lightbox and that I had got it but had not had a chance to set it up and use it. He (and Dr. DM when I accidentally called her the other day) said that it can take a couple of weeks to take effect. He said (and I agree with him) that I really am doing a lot of good things to take care of myself mentally, so if I'm still feeling this bad (and right this minute, it's really bad), it has to be the depression. Since I'm also a lot of things that I can do mentally to take care of myself, there needs to be a change of some sort to my meds. I see my psychiatrist next week. I'm not sure how high she wants to go with my Zoloft but it will be the top topic of discussion next week.

I started the lightbox therapy. Last week, I'd wake up, go to the bathroom, take my meds and go back into my bedroom and sit in front of the box for 30 minutes and read. I usually woke up around 7:30-8:00 and when I was done, get dressed and go downstairs to do whatever I had planned for the day. With work starting back, I have been able to get up at 6:30, do the bathroom and meds and then 25-30 minutes in front of the box. This seems like a good order to the day because I take my meds and then sit in front of the box. Before, I was taking my meds as the last thing I did in the bathroom before getting dressed for the day. If my mind was elsewhere, I could finish brushing my teeth and leave the bathroom without taking them. Now, I take them at a regular time in the middle of getting ready for the day. I've been trying to meditate during the lightbox time. Normally I would close my eyes to concentrate on my breathing, but can't do that with the lightbox. Dr. H was very specific that my eyes had to be open for the lightbox to work. So, I've been staring at a point on the desk and trying to concentrate on my breathing. So far, I've only been able to stand it for about 5 minutes. I have an app on my phone that will signal me after 5 minutes. I'm still like "How much time do I have left" and then go back to concentrating on my breathing. Hopefully I will get better at this. After that, I play Angry Birds. I also find something soothing about killing pigs with birds! Except when I can't get 3 stars after 3 or 4 tries. Finally at 7:00, I turn off the light and go back to the bathroom to finish all the hair/teeth/etc. The whole lightbox therapy has had the added bonus of helping me get out of the house on time and actually being on time for work. I have been in the office at 8:00 every day this week. Granted today is only Thursday, but if I can keep waking up at 6:30, I think I have that whole issue licked.

I have a lot more to say, but this post is long enough for now. As usual, I'm going to try to write everyday, but we all know how well I may be at that, but as the title says, I keep getting back in the saddle, maybe one time it will actually take.
This will have to be a short post as I only have 15 minutes until it is time to go home.

It is the week before Christmas and all through the house...I have ordered all my Christmas presents for the boys and asked Amazon to be nice and gift-wrap and mail them to my mom. This way, I don't have to worry about wrapping them (and I'm a horrible wrapper) and I don't have to worry about remembering to put them in the car. I had planned on purchasing them gift that I had run past their mom to make sure I didn't buy anything they already had. I found out that my sister had purchased gifts that M&P had already bought, so they took theirs back. Except that the companies I was ordering through (not Amazon) couldn't quite guarantee that they would be here by Christmas, one of them didn't even offer express shipping. So, I went back to the drawing board and found gifts for the older 2 boys. I'm pretty sure I'm good with the oldest one's present, but #2 nephew could end up with duplicates, but I'm hoping not.

Saturday night I went out with E and her daughter D and a friend's little girl that E was watching (J). The girls were incredibly cute at Steak 'N Shake. I made a bigger mess than either of them. I always end up with mustard and mayo on my shirt, without fail! We then went up to Westerville to Alum Creek to see the lights. They have this drive through exhibit. It was nice, except for the screaming 2 year old in the back seat. D decided she wanted to watch Netflix on E's Iphone and we wanted to listen to Christmas music while we drove through the exhibit. She started soon after we left the restaurant and it took about 30 minutes to get to Alum Creek and then it was probably another 30-45 minutes to drive through the exhibit. D would stop every once in a while, I don't know if it was to take a breath or because she did see a pretty light she liked, but mostly she screamed "phone" in 2 year old toddler speak! J was in the back with her and she was so quiet it was easy to forget that she was there. She just sat there looking at the lights and sometimes looking over at D like "Bitch, get a grip, will ya!" Finally on the way back home (with a pit stop to pick up E's oldest I), we got a little lost and once we turned around and got headed the right way home, we decided that we had had enough and D won! She definitely has her daddy's stubbornness! Sheesh! And when we got home, I handed us the phone saying that D had given it to him. She is trained that when she gets home, she has to give the phone to Mommy. She is really really cute which makes up for the really really loud crying and screaming.

But it was nice to spend the evening with E, even with the crazy babies!


So much for consistency

I'm really curious as to why I have so much trouble journaling. It's not like I don't have a lot to say. I think several times a day "Oh, I should write that down" I'm even near a computer most of the day. I suppose I just keep at it maybe it will become easier for me to get over whatever reluctance I seem to have.

While I haven't been writing goals down, I have had the normal ones (exercise, water, being on time) in the back of my mind. I have made myself get up and walk when I would have normally had someone else run the errand for me. I've been to lazy to bring in a whole 12 pack of Coke at work, so I've been just bringing in 2 cans each day. But that has the added benefit of I can't have an extra one whenever I want. If I get really thirsty, I have to drink water.

The time change seems to have played havoc with me as usual. I saw my psychiatrist and she asked me if I was doing any light therapy. I told her yes. I have a full spectrum lamp that I use daily. But after some questioning from her, it seems that what I'm doing isn't light therapy, it's just light. I need a special light box. And you need to use it at fairly specific times. There is a website that asks you all sorts of questions about what time you would wake up if you could, what time you would go to sleep if you go, etc. etc. After that it gives you a block of time that is the most beneficial to you to do the light therapy. Mine is like 4:30 to 7:30 in the morning. And the way that the light shines on you is important too. Studies has shown that the light needs to be above you so that it hits the bottom of the retinas, just like the sun would hit your eyes in the morning. Most of the lights aren't built to shine down on you. I suppose that you can set them up on the shelf to shine down, but there are a couple of machines that do have a stand on them so they can shine down on them. I checked out Amazon.com for some different ones and settled on one with a stand. I think I'm going to get this one. My insurance will cover it, but instead of going through all the rig-amoral and since it is only $139, I'm just going to purchase it and get reimbursed through my medical flexible spending account. I have more than enough money left in the account. I just have to wait the 2 weeks it takes to get the refund back. I'm very curious to see how well it works. I'm going to have to get out of bed earlier than I usually do, but I can set it up on my desk and sit and read for 30 minutes each day. I'd meditate but I tend it to do it with my eyes closed and it is important that your eyes are open. No sleeping and letting the light soak in.

I think this is going to be a multi-post day or maybe even a multi-day post, but for now I need to go. It's taken me all day to write this and there are other things that I want to write about and even I hate novel length blog posts!

There is a reason they call it practice!

Well I'm back. I wasn't entirely sure I'd get around to this today but finally I forced myself to start this.

I didn't do anything yesterday goal-wise but only drink 3 Cokes, which is something, but not as much as I would have liked. I ended up going to Qdoba and getting the Chicken Queso burrito. I was going to ask that they cut it in half and wrap one half of it up. I didn't and that came back to sort of haunt me. I ate half of it and I was basically done, but I was sitting around waiting until it was time to leave my sleep class and then I ate a little more. By the time I was done, I ate about 2/3s of the burrito and was stuffed. I'm trying to stop before I get stuffed. It wasn't a complete fail. I did stop and didn't eat all of it and make myself sick.

I finished up the sleep class. I'll write more about that later.

I got home last night and I was tired so I ended up going to bed at 9:00. I had the TV on, which isn't good sleep hygiene wise, but I do love going to sleep to the sound of football. I know, I'm strange, but as least I admit it. I woke up around 11:30ish and started watching Diners, Dives, and Drive-Ups on the DVR, but my DVR glitched and I didn't feel like getting up to unplug and restart the DVR box. But then several times I woke up and I was compelled to check to see if the DVR reset itself. I would have been better off getting up and taking care of it earlier in the evening. I wasn't awake that long for each occurrence, but still.

I woke up for good around 6:00. I even got out of bed around 6:45 because I really had to pee, but I was still about 10 minutes late this morning. I just couldn't get moving. It's like I have anxiety, it's not enough to really want to go back to bed and pull the covers over my head, but it is enough to keep me from moving until absolutely necessary.

2 Mini whole wheat bagels
Peanut Butter and Jelly (I remembered to bring the new bottle of jelly from home)
Coke (can)

The other half of the Adriatrico's pizza (Pineapple and Ham)
1 Mini Fast Break Candy Bar
2 Mini Take 5 Candy Bars

I really wanted chocolate. I wasn't hungry, but I kept thinking I really wanted chocolate. So, I ate the last of the Fast Break bars. And then I decided it tasted so good, I wanted more. Since I didn't have any more of the Fast Break, I had a Take 5 bar. And then I had a second. It was good, but mostly it was just mindless eating.

Between yesterday and today, there is a part of me that is discouraged. I know that by setting goals and trying to be realistic about what I can and cannot accomplish, I'm giving myself leeway, I don't have to be perfect to be okay. But sometimes, I wonder if I shouldn't be harder on myself. I'm not getting anywhere. I feel like I'm spinning my wheels. I suppose part of this feeling is because I forgot to take my antidepressants for a couple of days last week, but another part of me knows that I should get a little bit down on myself. I'm not intuitively eating, I'm eating mindlessly and I need to stop. It is okay to have 1 mini candy bar, even 2 if I was hungry, but I wasn't. That is the part that makes me a little crazy. All I can do is try again and again and hope for the best. Like the title of this post, there is a reason they call it practicing mindfullness and I'm constantly practicing it in hopes that it will stick.

The good is that I ended up getting up three and walking. They were work related, but I didn't pawn the trips off to M, couldn't as he wasn't here in the first occasion, I wanted to get the updated pictures of the faculty up on the "Wall of Shame" and I had to go to the bathroom and decided to try to find the department speakphone in the third. And I got several things done on my to-do list. I got all the pictures hung up (long story), ordered the desk copies for a graduate student who is teaching a course next week. She only asked me to do it weeks ago and I kept forgetting. The third thing was to find a room for a meeting that I need speakerphone capabilities. We have a speakerphone but our conference room doesn't have a phone line in it and I don't know if I want to use a classroom for an industry meeting. Luckily my friend E told me that PAES has some nices rooms over in the PAES building. I've got a call in to someone over there and hopefully by the end of the day tomorrow, I'll have that locked down. So, overall, not a bad day.

Tonight I want to put the lights and the silver garland on the tree. I put the Christmas tree up on Sunday. Last night I was too tired when I got home to do anything. I did remember to bring the box with the lights and tree topper and the silver garland downstairs, along with the 2 boxes that hold the ceramic Christmas decorations I have acquired from both Grandmas. I'm going to have to find a good place to put them where my friend E's daughter D (20 months and loves to get into everything) won't either break it or eat the little plastic lights.

I also want to put together a meatloaf. I bought enough hamburger for 2 so I want to bake 1 and freeze the other.

Tomorrow I want to hit the spice store so that I can do some baking and cooking over the holiday. I also need to call my mom and try to get to her to look in her recipe box for my grandma's white icing recipe. I want to make sugar cookies this year and I hate the store bought icing and I don't like the buttercream icing. Grandma had an icing recipe that is really simple, but I can't remember all the ingredients. I know it has butter, vanilla, powdered sugar and milk, but I can't remember the exact amounts.

I'm thinking about asking Mom for her recipe box and typing in all of her recipes into a recipe program so that we don't lose them anymore. I also need to find a way to get my other grandma's dressing recipe. I haven't found anything quite like it and I loved her dressing. I may have to call her and that is something I'm not entirely sure I want to do. That is another long story for another time.

I'm really looking forward to the long holiday weekend. I don't have any real plans other than watching football on Thursday, eating pizza and maybe making cheesecake and pumpkin muffins.

Starting anew

Well I've been away for a while. There were many times when I thought about posting something on my journal but I never did. I've been journaling in this red pleather journal I bought when I decided to go through a sleep CBT thingie. The thing is when I journal, I'm like the journaling queen, but I'm not consistent. I'll journal at work and not at home or on the weekends. But I'm at work and stopping to journal is not work related and my hand gets tired of writing and a whole other list of excuses. I'm going back to online journaling in a hope that I will journal more often (especially at home). I may not journal much at night since lately I've been not turning on the computer when I get home from work. I don't know what it is but I've been spending more time watching TV in the evenings and just not turning on the computer.

I'm going to try to keep up some the things I was doing in my written journal. On Mondays I try to set goals for the week. One of the things I'm hoping to get myself to do is go back and see how I did. I'm not entirely sure how often each day I'll post, whether it will be once a day or several smaller posts. I'll start out with 1 big post that I post before I leave work or at home.

Work: Since this is a 3 day week (yeah) I just want to get to work by 8:15 each day. I'm really working hard to get to work before 8:00, but right now 8:15 is enough for me. Especially since I seem to be working through lunch since Mark isn't coming in until 1:00 most days. That is a story for another day.
Exercise: I want to walk to the end of the hall and back all 3 days this week. And maybe to the mailbox this weekend. I know that I need to get out at least once this coming holiday weekend. Even just walking to the mailbox which is in the middle of the complex will help.
Food: I want to only drink 3 cokes a day for 3 days. I drank more coke on Saturday than I should have. I made an extra effort not to drink as much yesterday and even drank some water (see more about that later). I need to get back on the "not drinking coke" wagon.
Water: I want to drink a glass of water 4 days this week. I hate drinking water. I drink too much and I end up with a water stomach ache. But I need to build up my tolerance and I know that it is better for me than coke, but it is not as tasty! :-)

2 Mini Whole Wheat bagels
Peanut Butter
Coke (Can)

Adriatico's personal pizza with pineapple and ham (2 pieces out of 4)
Coke (Can)

I ordered pizza specifically because I could eat 2 pieces and put the rest in the fridge. And I did. I was pleasantly full after eating the 2 pieces. I only thought about about eating another and then my tummy said "Nope, I'm good" So, I put it in the fridge.

Dinner will either be Qdoba's Chicken Queso Burrito and Coke or Popcorn Chicken from KFC and a Coke. Depends on how hungry I am after work. If I am, I'll stop at Qdoba. If not, I'll get the chicken on the way home after the sleep session.

While I wouldn't rate this sleep class as a total bust, it wasn't that helpful. I guess what I can take from it is that I am doing a lot of things right, I just need to work on my sleep hygiene, such as not reading in bed. I can use some of the self-visualization techniques to help me fall asleep. But I'm glad I didn't have to spend $1000 for this (insurance is a great thing). If you haven't had as many hours of therapy as I have, a sleep CBT program would be helpful. But for someone who is been introduced to DBT and mindfulness and acceptance theory, CBT is a little out of date.

I'm going to post this. I most likely won't post anything else as I have the sleep class and it is over at 9:00. By the time I get home, I'll be ready to settle down for the night and go to sleep.

The gods hate me

Why does my timing stink so much. Of course this offer is only good until tomorrow and I'm completely and utterly broke (or mostly broke, but the money is already spoken for)


If you haven't seen this offer, Fox Connect is offering White Collar Season 2 DVDs for $31.99, which in itself is a good deal, Amazon is offering it at around $33.99. But if you enter FBFAN in the Promo Code area of the shopping cart, you get $2.00 of that price, free expedited shipping (about a $6.00 savings) AND the freaking thing ships on May 27, not June 7, like through Amazon. So, this works out to be $29.99 and you get it about a week early.

Do I have an extra $30? Of course I don't. Of course my payday was last week and my next payday is May 3. Sometimes corporate timing just sucks!

2 Posts - 1 Day

Ha! This is mostly for my WC friends.

I actually started working on a WC/Bones cross over. I've been watching too much Bones lately and changed from NCIS to Bones. Actually I'd love to do a big ole mash-up of Numb3rs, NCIS, NCIS:LA, Bones and WC, but baby steps Michelle, baby steps!

If I have questions about WC canon (that JE hasn't screwed up with Forging Bonds) and/or questions about character stuff, where can I post said questions to? Are there any lists where I can post either single questions or a whole list of questions and get answers to?


Life and all that!

Actually had written a LJ post about a week or so ago, but the inter-webs ate it. And then the week of 1000 doctor visits came to pass and then I caught a cold and was out for 3 days and well I guess you get the picture.

Updates on life:

Car - mostly it is quiet. Or as quiet as it ever runs. They (my mechanic and her people) were able to get the distributor cap off without having to call out the National Guard. They did some mojo that she explained to me and it was suppose to have taken care of most of the rough idling. Meh, it does seem to run a little smoother, but I still get that sort of stutter after a little while. I think she said something about looking for dirt on something or another (don't you love these technical mechanical terms), but for the most part, right now, it is okay.

They did tell me that they were getting ready to junk a '94 Honda Accord and would I want to swap the front driver side door for my broken one. The door on my car is a mess. First of all, a year or so ago, Mom was backing out of her garage and not paying a damn bit of attention (mostly because she's not use to there being a car parked in her driveway) and took out the rear view mirror. Also, the motor that opens and closes the window has been broken since forever, since before Mom gave the car to Molly, forever. Mom said that her mechanic said they could fix it for $50 or replace the motor for $250. I don't think I need to tell you what she did. Broke for Molly. Molly's mechanic said the same thing. When Molly told them that the motor had been fixed once and why should she spend the extra $50 (she of course didn't have the $250), her mechanic assured her that they would fix it right and that that would be that. HA! My mechanic never even got a chance to look at it. Their opinion was if we had to take the door apart, we might has well just replace the thing. Needless to say, I'm not dropping $250 or more for something that I can live without. Don't get me wrong, I loved when the window worked and I didn't have to worry about opening and closing the car door to scan my garage pass, but in the grand scheme of things, I have a lot of things I would rather do with $250. Then the door handle broke. Actually the plastic around the door handle broke, but it was what allowed the lever to work correctly. I was able to do some gymnatics to get the door opened and didn't think anything about it...until the door handle really broken. Luckily, it broken off when it was at the mechanics and R was able to jury-rig a door handle with a zip tie. I call it my "Redneck door handle" It freaks the guys at Jiffy Lube and Discount Tire out, but mostly they deal with it.

Back to the new door. The great thing about this door is that the car being junked is almost the same color as my car. Actually it is the same color (sort of a silver gray), except that my car spent 15 or so years in Florida is a little more faded than this car. They will be 2 different colors, but it won't be like green car and red door different. Actually the door handle is broken on the "new" door too, but R thinks he can use the driver's back door and some dremel magic to put the door handle back together. Honda no longer makes those parts and everytime R has gone to the junkyard, there is never an unbroken Honda door handle. Since Mom was prepared to pay for the damage she did, we decided to split the cost of the replacement door. They estimate it will cost around $100. Mom's going to put it on her credit card and I'm going to pay her back for half. I was suppose to have the door changed out last Wednesday, but since I was still trying to hack up a lung, it didn't happen. I'm dropping the car off next Thursday and just realized that I need to have the car back by 3:30 or so so I can get to therapy. I'll have to make some calls to see if they think they can get the car fixed in time. Therapy day may have to get moved.

I finally got tested for ADHD. I found out they now call it ADHD and then divide it up into 3 different groups, those who aren't hyperactive, those who are and those were are both (I don't know the different, but that's what Dr. D told me). You do an initial visit with a doctor, who does the whole patient history. One of the main characteristics to getting a diagnosis of ADHD is that you have to have had it as a child. My mom swears this show she saw on TLC or some other channel said that there is such a thing as adult-onset ADHD, but both docs say "Nope" You can have an attention disorder that is not ADHD and that gets all complicated. But to have ADHD, you are suppose to have had the signs (You don't have to be diagnosed with it) in childhood. This is where things get tricky. I really didn't. Maybe I had a symptom or two, but not enough for a full blown diagnosis.

After the initial visit, you go back for testing. This is a full day of testing. Actually it's like 4 hours of testing, but add in time for lunch and it's pretty much a full day. They do some pattern recognition stuff, take these blocks and make patterns that match what is in the book, do math and spelling in my head (that sucked rocks) and this thing where you go into a dark room, watching a B&W monitor and click on the clicker whenever you see this box blink below a certain point on the screen. OMG it was boring. And I was further hampered by the fact that I was wearing old glasses (since my regular glasses were off getting a new 'script) I was seeing double the whole time and it was dark and it was boring and I swear I almost fell asleep during it. Which, I guess is a sign that you have an attention problem, since regular people would be able to keep their attention on this thing for the 20 freakin' minutes that particular test took. I dare you not to fall asleep during this test. The afternoon, the doctor himself came in and ran me through a battery of tests. Lists of things to remember, I sucked hard at that! Telling the important parts of a story after it was read to me. Retelling the list of stuff he read to me before, remember the important things from the stories, back and forth. It seems I didn't do so hot on those parts either.  I have issues with my short term memory. Or as I like to put it, my RAM is faulty. If it gets written to my hard drive, I'm good, but if not, I'm screwed.

So, 2 weeks after that day of testings (ie: last Thursday) I went back and got the results. He is diagnosing me with ADHD (without the impulsiveness, but Dr. D thinks I am probably the combo one). Because I have had such a long history of issues on simple mental errors and other issues since my early 20s, he decided to go for the positive diagnosis. This doc is very closed emotionally. I could hardly make him smile. It was driving me batty. Dr. D said he is like that, but that he is a cool guy. I'm just personally glad I don't have him as my doc because I would have to strangle him, "Show some emotion, will ya!" GRRRRR.

Mostly, they both seem to think that the reason I'm having such problems now (as in the last few years) is that my depression is such a mess and one of the symptoms is loss of concentration. I am also most likely bi-polar, and you throw in the anxiety and I'm battier than bat shit. If we can get one piece of the puzzle under control, most notably the depression, the rest should fall into place, but maybe we have to treat the ADHD to help get the depression under control. The anxiety has been rearing it's lovely head, but I don't know if it is because of the depression or the fact that my life has sucked large lately. Again, until we get everything untangled, I'm just going to be a big mess. Dr. D gave me the name of 2 psychiatrists to see if either one takes OSU Prime Care. Both deal with ADHD in adults and kids. I'm going to try to make an appointment ASAP.

I'm seeing the podiatrist on Monday afternoon. I love how when you get a referral for a specialist and your doctor's office just makes the appointment for you, like you don't have any issues in the world and you can just drop everything to go whenever they feel like setting you up. And if I hadn't gone back through my email to check to see if she had actually mailed my referral to me (like I asked), I would have not known that I had an appointment for Monday morning at 9:20. Needless to say, that appointment got changed. I ask for last appointment of the day, so what does she give me, 3:40 on Monday. Why do doctors think no one works from 9-5. I guess I'm selfish that maybe one night a week you couldn't have late hours for those of us still capable for working and maybe not wanting to blow sick leave willy-nilly. Since my Achilles won't get better until I get the orthopedics , I'm sucking it up and going on Monday. It will take about a week to get them from the place that makes them so the sooner the better. But it doesn't mean I can't bitch about it.

Since I spent most of last week at home, my Achilles hasn't been bothering me as much, even when I did go back to work. Here's hoping that once I get the stuff for my feet, that takes care of that issue and I can skip the rest of the PT. The co-pays I'm racking up are killing me, even with getting them reimbursed through my flexible spending account.

I'm stopping here because I still have more to write but the last load of laundry is done and I still have 2 or 3 more loads of dishes to do and I need to think about dinner. I'll do an update on the job situation and the rest of my mental craziness tomorrow, if at all possible.

Thanks for listening!

Today and Yesterday

First I want to say thank you for the hugs and encouragement from yesterday. I hate days like that. Where no matter how much you try to tell yourself that things will be okay, that these are just passing emotions and thoughts, it feels like the walls are caving in on you and there is no way out of the room.

Part of journaling, which everyone tells me is good for my depression is being honest. So, some of what I write may be painful to read. I actually looked up to see what an overdose of Cymbalta would do to me, if I could kill myself with it. Not really, but I could give myself one hell of a anxiety attack! *snort* I then looked up how to painlessly kill myself. I'm not one for slicing my wrists, I've heard that bleeding out hurts like hell. I know if I had a garage I could shut it up and turn on the car or turn on the gas in the apartment (although as drafty as my place is I don't think that would have worked :-) ) But when I read about buying a bottle of helium and putting a mask on and going to sleep and never waking up, I have to say that scared me more than wanting to die. Scared me down to the bone. I have all the elebrate schemes to die: drive by shooting, drunk driver, stuff like that. It has to be taken out of my hands. I wouldn't walk in front of a bus or drive in front of a train because I've heard people talking about how that effects the person who ends up killing you. They call it Suicide by Cop (when it is the police). If I'm going to go, I don't want to hurt anyone in the process (beyond my friends and family grieving for me). My therapist looked at me like I was a loon when I told her all this. Unfortunately, I live in a decent enough neighborhood and am a fairly decent driver (plus I hate being out late at night when most of the drunk drivers are out.)

I'm crazy, but then I already knew that!

I am seeing my nurse practitioner on Tuesday and definitely the topic of discussion is meds. I hate med changes. They are depressing and yes, I meant the pun. You have to go off the meds gradually, ramp up to a new med gradually and all the while you feel like shit. And then there is the distinct possibility, the damn thing won't work. Because I've come to believe that prescribing psychiatric drugs are as much an art as a science. Not that any other type of prescription is much of a science since any one drug can react 65 million different ways depending on your DNA. But knowing that the mind is so complex and that we don't have exactly why some of these meds work the way they do, just that they work, does not instill confidence in me. But, when you find the right meds, in the right combination/dosage and there is that moment when you realize the little black cloud that has been raining on you for so long is gone...it is a glorious feeling. Although I find it is also bittersweet. After a while, you know you will feel better, but for how long. How long before this drug stops working and you have to start all over again. I know that the whole mindfullness thing is about living in the moment but I dare anyone not to start flinching like a kicked puppy after several med changes. Humans can be just as conditioned as dogs.

When I left the office last night, I thought I had completely and utter screwed my life up. I found that I had missed getting a contract approved before the event and the person with whom I was going to have to grovel to is suppose to be my new mentor and possibly my new boss if she decides to hire me. But first she has to interview me. And then there is the fact, that I don't know if I want to work for her. But she is a stickler for things like not getting contracts to her for signature and not getting purchases pre-approved. And I thought I had missed it. I knew I had started working on it, but it came in with a bunch of other stuff that all went crazy at the beginning of last week and this specific contract got lost in the shuffle. I tried not to obsess over it. I don't mind saying I screwed up, but lately, that is all I feel like I'm doing, is screwing up.

That is another joy of depression (or at least mine), you make a mistake, you get depressed, you get down on yourself, you get forgetful and then you make another mistake and the cycle continues on and on. The only true way to stop the cycle is not to get down on yourself when you make a mistake. Admit that it happened and move on. I'm getting much better at that. And if no one but a few people within my department would have had to know about this, it wouldn't have been a big deal. They get that people make mistakes. Unfortunately, in this instance, I had to fess up to someone who doesn't understand that people make mistakes. I'm sure that she does, but when it comes to underlings making mistakes...well yeah, let's not go there. I joked to myself last night that I guess this would mean that I don't have to worry about deciding whether or not to take the open position (not that I've even been interviewed for it).

This morning, I was doing processing some other paperwork regarding this event and realized that I hadn't screwed up...or not as badly as I thought. I had misunderstood someone else's email. I thought we were doing y instead of x (the lost contract), so I had stopped processing it, because we won't doing that anymore. Well, come to find out, yes we were, and it was because we were hosting 2 events, 1 right on top of the other and that wasn't made clear to me. I've been with this department for 12 years (today, in fact) and I didn't even realize this. I can live with miscommunication. Those things happen. It is when the mistake is wholly my fault that I get myself in trouble. If you can spread the fault around, I'll take my share and then some! So, we will have to bow and curtsy and grovel, but I can be okay with my part in it.

Learning to accept mistakes and failure is still a work in progress for me. As my friend E asked me yesterday "Who is your hardest critic?" That is easy, it's me. We are always our hardest critic. Add in feeling worrying about losing my job and extreme irritation for one of my co-workers who is relatively safe job wise, I'm a freakin' mess.

So, to finish up yesterday's story. I ended up asking a friend to borrow the money for the car. She's checking to see if she can do it. Last night and this morning the car ran about as well as it has. Yes, I want to get it fixed and hope that I can borrow the money to get it fixed within the next week. It is not the best situation, but it is the best I can come up with right now. I'm hoping that after this repair, the car will settle down for a while.

I ended up talking to my friend for a while after work and leaving the office around 6:00. I had to stop to pick up my anti-anxiety meds (the last thing I need is bigger panic attacks while being depressed). I got home, fixed myself a turkey and cheese sandwich and watched Kid in a Candy Store on my DVR. I finished up just before 8:00 and was going to go to bed, but made the mistake of turning the TV back on just as Glee was starting. I'll do a review of Glee and Raising Hope (which is one of my favorite new shows later), but this was a good episode for me to watch, as was this particular Raising Hope. I ended up going to bed around 10:00 and feel asleep fairly easy. I don't sleep through the night. Either my brain or my bladder wake me up at least once through the night. I think I woke up about 2 or 3 times, but went back to sleep each time pretty easily. But this morning my eyes were *SO* extremely puffy. I'm surprised I could see out of them. Driving to work was interesting. But I made it to work, which I told friends was a check in the "win" column. By 10:00ish, my eyes settled down. I had things I had to get done today (since I'm in ADD testing all day tomorrow) so I had stuff to keep my mind occupied and that helped.

I'm headed home and plan on eating dinner and doing some cleaning upstairs. There isn't anything really great on tonight, so I'll probably go to bed early tonight. Tomorrow is suppose to be more mentally tireing than physically.

Again, thanks for the hugs and the positive notes. It does help to be reminded that you aren't alone when you feel like there isn't anything else left but a big blank hole where there is suppose to be a person.