Tag Archives: ocd

Time cards are for geniuses

For this otherwise glorious job, I have to fill out timecards once every two weeks. I’ve never managed to get it right. I write down the wrote date, forget to give myself credit for hours I’ve worked and once had to pay for days I actually worked because I screwed up so badly. It sucks and I hate it. I wish I had a job with a personal secretary, a competent, good one, because I need it. I need a housekeeper, too. Those are two tasks beyond my level of skills. I think I always thought I’d have those things, so I didn’t focus on two very important tasks. My house remains a mess, and often visits the world of shambles. I am not sure how to handle this well. There is this book my mom got me, “Sidetracked Home Executive” and it is effective. But I have to remember to use it, and not just skip things in to the back of my 3×5 cards labeled with important chores and activities. Some of the things are like: Tidy kitchen. That usually means putting my husband’s eggs away. Other things like: Put on makeup, frequently get ignored. I think I’m prettier at 35 than i was at 25, but I’m really not the one to judge.

I had another bad morning. Yesterday was terrible. I just feel, I don’t know, unusual. It’s like I skipped an important medication, or got treated differently than I am used to be treated. It throws me. It looks like the Malakoa who thought she could do anything was wrong.

I read the other day how bipolar people believe they can do things they cannot do. This is true, and I wished I had known it before. It’s not the same as having dreams, dreams are important. There are some folks with bipolar who think they can fly, or know how to solve California’s budget problems. I believed I could roller skate and invited friends out skating. (I do not roller skate.) The confidence is compelling, so sometimes we get jobs based on claims we make in job interviews. Yes, in college I read 100 pages an hour. Now, I sometimes take 1/2 hour to read three.

I can think of two great big examples of how I screwed my college education up. One was my major. I studied Comparative Literature and thought I could go to graduate school. I spoke pretty competent Spanish but could not read and write it well. I took the Spanish 25 class, which it like English 1A. You are expected to know Spanish, but not be familiar with the skills necessary to write essays or interpret readings. I got a “C”. I didn’t take this as a sign that I should change my major, which required upper division work in Spanish. I just plugged along, got a tutor and kept getting those “C”s. I do not know what I was thinking.

Another thing I did was decided I wanted to take a graduate level class in Anglo-Saxon literature. I was not earning good grades and I was not regularly attending class. However, my enthusiastic demeanor earned me a space in the small, exclusive seven person group, filled with the finest English graduate students in the United States, and me. I did horribly in the class. I was asked to drop it, but instead hung around and didn’t quite get why I wasn’t doing well. I never dropped the class, and what’s more I arrive an hour late to the final because I wrote the time down right but read it long. I didn’t take the final at all. The teacher felt “betrayed” and refused to even give me a grade in the class.

It really screwed up my GPA, which wasn’t so great in the first place.

I didn’t know then, but my behavior was classic bipolar nonsense. I can’t go back to school and fix things. I earned my Bachelor’s degree with out commendation and had similar troubles in graduate school. I dream of going back to school and earning a psychology degree so I can work with other mentally ill folks, but the truth is I don’t have the chops. My memory is not good and there are probably not a lot of schools that would take me. National University, maybe? I’m not too proud. But we’re wise enough right now not to go into debit so I can get a degree for a job I may or may not get. I can’t work too much, it’s do much responsibility. I don’t want to be in charge of anyone either. I like my Genesis job. I do not like payroll, but you can’t like everything. If you do, it seems to me, you are not paying attention. It’s silly. Do not always be silly, all your credibility will be gone and no one likes that.

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You’re a mean mommy

She said it calmly, as we were de-pressurizing from a minor altercation.

It was simple. Her backpack was open. She was chattering away down the drive way. I said, “Stop!” and she didn’t so I said it again. Then again. Finally, I hit the car to make a loud noise so she would listen. (It was already an exercise in stupidity.) She stopped. I zipped her backpack. I said, “Let’s try this again.” She didn’t want to, but she did.

“I thought you told me to stop talking. So I did.” She is a sparkling, spirited and obedient girl. I tell her something once and she usually does it. If she doesn’t I start counting, 1, 2, 3) and she hates that so much she straightens up very quickly. (There is no spanking at number five, or anything like that – she just hates being counted on.) I explained it was because I wanted her to stop walking with her open backpack. “Maybe we can communicate better next time? You can stay ‘stop’ but you can explain what you want me to stop.” (She just turned seven and is able to analyze the conflict better than many adults.)

Next time was going to be right now, so we went back to the porch and tried again. We walked to school. She asked me, “Why did you hit the car?”

“Because I wanted you to listen to me.”

“It just scared me.”

We had a short discussion on whether I am a “mean mommy” or not. I probably am a partially mean mommy. I think that children use that phrase to garner revenge on their parents but I don’t think that is what she was trying to do, I think she was trying to quantify her experience. Two years ago the mommy of which she said, “you don’t just cook and cuddle, you do all things loving,” was not acting like someone who does “all things loving.” This required a new evaluation of the situation.

I am not a yeller. I can lose my temper, but if I do, I try to remove myself from the situation and check in later. It was a source of pride for me that I had yelled or snapped at her less than five times by the time she was five. It just wasn’t part of my parenting tool kit. Mind you there were plenty of other things I squeezed in the kit that were both ridiculous and futile, it’s just that yelling or stomping my feet or hitting the car had not been one of them.

Earlier in the week I was on the phone with something to do with the bills. I was on the computer, and my husband was on one side of the breakfast bar and my daughter on the other. They were asking me to press 1 for blah blah and 2 for another blah and three for blah blah blah. I couldn’t hear, I had already pushed the wrong button once and I raised my voice (notice: didn’t even yell) “Stop talking!”

My husband was surprised, and I was shocked. Small was terrified and confused. I said I was sorry, even though I felt justified. I should have taken the computer and phone upstairs, but that didn’t occur to me until about three minutes ago.

So I was being grouchy. I don’t know what is happening to me. I don’t think it’s a bipolar/OCD/ADD thing – I think it’s a human thing. A bipolar thing might be to throw the phone at the offending party. (I don’t throw things, though). An ADD thing might tap into her secret spider sense to be able to hyper focus, or at least moved her computer out of the way. I don’t know how OCD might play into it, but I’m sure there is some way to blame it and not take responsibility for my own actions. (A charged statement. Many times my mood takes chemically over my body, but this was not the situation.)

I’ve been doing yoga pretty regularly, and it has helped a lot as far as feeling like my body is healthy and my mind is clearer. It hasn’t helped with my mood, though. I need to spend more time in the Bible, in my DBT (Dialectal Behavior Therapy) and to take my pills. That will be enough to probably keep me stable. Then again, bipolar still wins sometimes.

I’ll be gone for the next few days, so I won’t be on the computer until Sunday/Monday. Be well over the next few days.


B-100

Lately, I’ve been crazy about B-100.  It’s a complex of all the B vitamins.  I take 1 1/2 pills every day.

Not only does it make me feel centered and take the edge off of my anger, it makes me stop talking under my breath like a crazy person. 

As many mental health professionals have told me, “you’re not crazy, you’re bipolar”.

Ah, to be only bipolar.

Unfortunately, the OCD has been bothering me a bit.  I’m back to checking on my keys about five times an hour.  That’s a major slow down compared to before, though, when it was five times in the short walk between my front door and my car.  I’ve said this before and I’ll say it 100 times more:  Once medicated, I felt like I was on vacation.  I didn’t have to worry to death about every thing.