Thursday, April 19, 2012
Yes, today is my birthday and I am really, really fighting to stave off a pity party. And it has nothing to do with turning 46 as I know I am in a better place in my life than I have ever been before. No, my depression suddenly didn't disappear off the face of the earth, nor did the sun decide to take up full time occupancy over our island and, yes, we are still undergoing a financial hardship. As of next week, we will be living on my unemployment insurance which isn't much as my job is only seasonal and part-time at that.
No doubt my special day is going to be different this year. I don't think there will be any presents and I am fine with that, really, I am. I know I have far too many physical possessions to enjoy as it is so anything else would be a waste. I am being taken out to a nice restaurant both tonight and tomorrow - today by my mom and tomorrow by close friends.
I think what I am sad about is that I miss my dad. Huh? Yep, I miss the way he always made me feel special everyday but even more so on my birthday. He would always make the special effort to call me as soon as he knew I would be up and would devote the whole day to doing whatever I wanted to do. Okay, now I sound like a child but I hope you all know what I mean.
I need to feel Dad in my life right now and that would be a perfect present for me. A few hours before he died he promised me he would live on in my heart and I know that deep within he is here with me. I am hoping some of you know what is like to have that closeness with their parents and that you don't think I'm gone off the deep end.
Anyway, I have to cheer myself up and stop this is in its tracks before Dad himself pops out of nowhere and smacks me up the side of the head. Ha! I got my sense of humour from him so he did give me a special gift!
So, where am I in my journey? Well, I'm not really sure. This has been the longest I have ever gone without blogging and I kind of missed it. Do you ever go back and read your past blogs? It is an eye-opener for me when I do. Somethings I have written make me squirm while other stuff makes me quite proud that I am honest. Yes, I have a mental illness but that doesn't make me who I am.
Speaking of mental illnesses, I had an interesting appointment with my psychiatrist earlier in the week. She "thinks" I am a completely different person than when I began seeing her about 8 years ago. You know me and my humour so don't be surprised that I piped up and said "okay, whom I am and what have I done with the real Susan." Thankfully she has a great sense of humour as well so I wasn't locked away!
According to her, I am at the stage where I am accepting of my illness and moving on. I am not letting depression (oh, and a slight tendency to be Bi-Polar - who knew?) dictate where my life takes me. I am not using it as a shield but rather to explain who I am and the role it plays in my life. She says I am much stronger than I think I am and am much more saner than anybody she has ever met?! Who me? Sane? Wow? You see, I have always thought I was slightly crazy and was only one forgotten pill away from being put into a straight jacket. But no, apparently a professional thinks I have an inner strength that I don't know about.
So, who is the real Susan? The real Susan is finally emerging and I am finding out that she might actually be likeable and a nice friend to have in my back pocket. So the birthday present I am giving myself this year is permission to accept and love who I am right now and not worry about who I was or who I might turn out to be.
Oh, and a piece of birthday cake wouldn't go astray
P.S. I think I just hear Dad clapping and cheering me on!
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Well, after writing yesterday's blog I forced myself to go out for a walk to clear my head. I had walked about 1km when the rain started so I had several choices:
1. I could turn around and walk back home
2. I could dart in somewhere and call John to come get me
3. I could continue my walk
I opted for number 3 and ended up walking 4 kms all of which was in the pouring rain until I was so wet through that I really had no option but to call home for a ride. Even then I was wet right through to my underwear! But, I did it! and it felt so good after a long hot shower to be able to record 4 km in my fitness tracker.
You see, I'm down BUT I'm not out! Although many of you know that I am depressed what you don't realize is that I am also very stubborn . I am NOT letting depression win the overall prize! It might knock me down a day, a week, a month or even a year at a time but when I die I want to look back and say, Take that Depression.....You Never Did Win
So, I am back to picking up the pieces
I am going to take this one day at a time and each day I feel good is a bonus! To that end I know I must keep up with my end of the bargain. I must feed my body and soul healthy foods and ideas, I must be open, and I must be willing to take my medications and use my sun lamp. Sure all days are not going to be rosy but I will get through them!
Some days I might not feel like walking and I will give myself permission not to. Some days I will struggle to stay the course but at least I'm on my way and as they say finished last beats did not finish which in turn beats didn't start!
Some well meaning friend asked if I felt cheated because I live with depression. Are you kidding me? Things could be so much worse that depression, as ugly as it can be! Yes, there are times I have the "why me" moments but then I think "why not me". There are many, many different faces to depression:
Here is mine!
And here is the look of satisfaction after resisting crawling into bed and instead getting out to walk in the rain!
Monday, April 09, 2012
May I please have a "do-over"? Nothing seems to be working for me right now and although that does sound a bit whiny, it is the plain and simple truth. I've stopped logging in, I have allowed some fantastic Spark friendships to lapse, I'm not active on any of my teams. Maybe it is time to take a Spark break? I don't know.
For some reason, deep within, I can't even fathom my life without Spark (which is a good thing, isn't it?) so maybe I will just step back and take a breather. Has anybody else gone through this? Would you share what worked for you to get you back as an active Sparker?
I am fighting hard against this depression and SAD. It ebbs and flows so some days are a lot better than others. Most people with SAD find the winter tough but my worse time is March - May and sometimes even June depending on the weather. I've been sitting in front of my SAD light, I take my vitamin D, and I try to get out and walk regardless of the weather because time with my dogs cheers me up.
I finish work in two weeks which right now seems great. I want to focus on getting more physically active and will do so by resuming water aerobics in the mornings. I need something to get me up and out the door.
Maybe this will pass and I will be back to blogging tomorrow but right now I feel I need some me time..which is probably the last thing I really need!
Hold tight my friends. I am down but not out!
Friday, April 06, 2012
Happy Easter to my Christian friends,
It is so nice to be off work today and I am using that time to do lots of little things that have been piling up around me. First I swept the mounds of dog fur that somehow seems to accumulate in our living room on a daily basis. I'm sure any dog owner can undertand!
Then I pulled out a pile of magazines that have built up over the winter and went through them and pulled out a bunch of easy, tasty, and healthy recipes that didn't seem too intimidating. The magazines themeselves are now ready to bring to the senior's home where mom lives.
Then I put on the dishwasher which is humming away and doing my dishes as we speak. Now if it would only put them away for me. Hmm......calling all inventor's out there!
I've got a turkey thawing in the basement fridge for Sunday, I've got my grocery list written up for tomorrow and I have my exercise planned out for today.
Oh, and I am taking a few minutes to Spark. Which is where, I might add, that I came across the inspriration for today's blog. Today I was inspired by a fellow TeddyBear who goes by the SparkName of YIWEN39.
She wrote a blog about walking in place while watching your favouorite television show. I don't watch a lot of television and to honest when I do I seem to use it as an excuse to eat so this might really help me. The Big Bang Theory might be even more enjoyable to me when I exercise during it. Maybe I could start off slow and vow to exercise during the first and third commercial breaks. Who knows where this could lead? And who says it has to be limited to walking in place. Why not dig out a few hand weights? I could do that with my lower back problem and it wouldn't be too much trouble.
Anyway, have a great weekend all. I'm off to do some more tidying in my life!
Tuesday, April 03, 2012
It was another sunny, yet, cool day here on the Rock and Spring Fever has hit big time. Yesterday we saw a young man out for a stroll wearing shorts and it was "shiver your liver" weather with a high of 4 degrees C. Today, the temperature rose to 5 degrees and people had their motorcycles out! Meanwhile, while walking the hounds, I was decked out in my wool hat and mittens and even then the wind was cool on my face. Might I be getting old or am I being realistic? Hmm?
Had an interesting moment after our walk today. We had stopped into a grocery store on the way home looking for grapes (no, couldn't find any, nor any strawberries, etc) so while John was paying for the few things we had I decided to go back to the truck to keep Maddy and Louisa company. I was in the truck and they were gone wild (despite having just returned from a long walk in the woods) so I opened one of the windows to let them hang their heads out. Out of nowhere Missy Louisa decides to jump out the window (!) and ran across the parking lot and up to the automatic doors. Thankfully John was just coming out and was carrying her leash across his chest and quickly snapped her on. The little bugger! I can only imagine the chaos if the doors had opened and she went sailing through the aisles! Glutton on four legs!
Okay, so I will get to my point of my blog and I have to credit JOANNANOW for bringing this up in her recent blog. Our journeys are just that...OUR journeys. There is no WE in this despite all the encouragement we give to one another. Just because we surround ourselves with successful SparkFriends doesn't mean we are going to be successful.
YOU are in the driver's seat of your journey. YOU decide if you are going to exercise and, if so, how much is good enough for you. YOU decide choice by choice what goes into your mouth.
I am taking this journey extremely slow and yes, I ridden on some of your coat tails at times. I wanted to lie down this afternoon and rest my back but I walked 3 km instead as I know the walking does really help my back pain in the end. Likewise, at the grocery store, I wanted to pick up something quick and easy for supper but I made the choice to simply buy yogurt and milk and go home to healthy leftovers.
Class dismissed. Next lecture will be on canine restraints for your vehicles....written by Louisa! Woof - woof!
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