Thursday, April 23, 2009

I have a home again. I moved at the end of March into a smallish basement suite. I haven't lived alone in a couple of years and I was a bit nervous about it - what happens if I get really suicidal or fall apart and there's no one sane around to notice? Or as concrete a fear - what happens if I have a bad vertigo attack in the shower (answer: I have a plastic stepstool that I can take into the shower if I'm feeling nervous so I have something to sit on while I get clean). Thanks to the Seroquel I'm also more or less remembering to eat on a regular basis (but still losing weight! I can now fit into a pair of jeans I haven't been able to wear since 2006).

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A very long radio silence

I have spent most of the last year+ attempting to be a "normal". Well from November 07-June 08 anyways I was working full time and getting sicker by the millisecond. On my way to my job in early December I fainted on transit (something about standing up on a vehicle in motion that activated previously latent vertigo). Sadly, that became more and more prevalent and branched out to also fainting at work. I had a FULL work up of blood tests that determined my:

*blood sugar+
*and more stuff that they took blood and I have no idea why

were are all NORMAL. No medical cause for the vertigo. As soon as I stopped working, MOST of the vertigo went away (but unfortunately it's still very present on public transit which has led to some VERY awkward moments where I've had to politely tell people with canes that I am unable to give up my seat to them...) and so did a lot of the exhaustion. At that point I was taking a 2 hour nap after work just to have the energy to socialize with my boyfriend or my then house-mate, eat dinner, have a shower and do stuff in the evening. Otherwise I was completely dead exhausted. The over-tired is partially being treated now with Wellbutrin but a lot of it did go away when I stopped working (psycho-somatic much?).

I am almost all the way through my application process for being determined a Person With Disability (PWD from now on) for my PTSD and "mood disorders". My doctor has been very cooperative with me and the disability advocate who is working on my case, and he has filled out pretty much exactly what we hoped he would (aka the stuff that would get me the most help and overall life assistance), so that is hopeful. All that is missing now is a permanent address for me. I am officially homeless as 99% of my life went into a storage locker while the laptop and I go couch surfing but I am a LOT of subsidized housing waitlists (and working with a housing advocate) so hopefully in the next month or so....

+besides being previously diagnosed as hypoglycemic

Saturday, August 25, 2007

radio silence

I swear I'm not in the psych ward - I've just been busy with packing up my life and putting it into storage, and when things settled into a dull roar I reinjured my knee (3 days of hopping around and various degrees of limping) and while *that* was healing, I came down with a case of strep throat that took me 4 days to get treated.

Yeah not a lot of energy to write with a fever of 103 :-\

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Thank goddess for small mercies

I am down to 4 tablets of Celexa left, and praise be to Goddess, I was able to get the form filled out and faxed in by a doctor stating that I will die or suffer undue hardship without my meds - having talked to the local branch of the government in charge of such things, I was assured that if I get the form faxed in by 3pm tomorrow (and it was in by 2pm today) that for the next year, my prescriptions will be paid for by the government. One less thing to worry about budgeting for!

(Huge huge huge thanks to my girlfriend for tracking down the right phone number for me to call - took me 4 transfers and 10 minutes to speak to the right person)

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Sun, Surf, Sand....and Seroquel

Be gentle, folks, this is my first disability blog carnival entry.

As the theme for this one is "On Holiday" and I love word-play, that's the title.

I have a love/hate relationship with vacations. Once I get there, I love it (usually). It's the *getting there* that I hate.

Imagine that crowds, noise and lack of privacy can trigger anxiety and panic attacks. Imagine spending a full day surrounded by people non-stop, noise overload, the only "alone time" available is a trip to a dirty airport bathroom (or a claustrophobic airplane or Greyhound bus toilet). Over the years I've figured out some coping strategies - I wear my cloak (hurray for medieval re-enactment) so that if I have to, I can pull the hood over my face, wrap myself up in my "blankie" and feel secure enough to take a nap (this strategy only really works once I'm ON transit though - I shouldn't recommend it for airports or bus terminals); I have an MP3 player to help shut out some of the background noise so that I feel a little more alone; I bring books so that I can tune out my surroundings and lose myself in someone else's world; or (especially when I take the night bus) I have my writing notebook and I sit there in my little circle of bright from the overhead light thinking and crafting poetry. One day I want a laptop computer so that I can also play some of my favourite games to help distract me. (The Sims 2 and Civ 4 rank VERY highly on my list of favourite games - well so does World of Warcraft but that relies on an internet connection and that is tenuous while in transit).

Great. So now I'm "there" and I'm away from my familiar house, my familiar routines. Internet access ranks highly for helping me maintain my balance - take away my access to my blogs, my email, my games, my message boards and I start feeling very isolated. I've spent my adult life relying on the internet for a sense of support, of community. No matter how screwy my sleep schedule, my online communities are there when I need them to be - that can't be said of real life people who have lives and schedules of their own - at my convenience and theirs. Yet another reason to get a laptop! It's even more important when I'm away from home to have my decompression time, my alone time so that I can process what's going on and enjoy being there.

Soapbox time

I really grappled - and still am - with posting about my suicide attempt last summer. This blog is the first place I've ever made it public - even my family doesn't know it happened. I posted about it on a very very narrow filter on my personal blog but I found it very difficult to talk about there. Here, mask firmly in place, it's a bit easier. On one hand it is a manifestation of my illness (and an ongoing one - I still feel suicidal from time to time but with last summer still fresh in my mind I won't attempt again). On the other, the world treats suicide as shameful. Those who attempt it are "failures" who just need to "cheer up and see that it's not all that bad" - the caveat being unless of course one is elderly, has a severe disability or a chronic illness and then it's "okay" to stop living. The most glaring example of this was the young male RN who helped me to the washroom in ER and while he was assisting me blurted out "but why did you do it? A beautiful girl like you!". Because - of COURSE being beautiful is a buffer against anything horrible EVER happening to anyone.

He may have needed his eyes examined - spending an entire afternoon, evening and night vomiting didn't leave ME feeling beautiful. I didn't even feel fully human - add to that the gravol, the other anti-nausea meds, the sleeplessness, the sheer and utter crapitude of how I was feeling. But his comment was indicative of societal thought - and society as a whole needs to accept, to empathize, to de-stigmatize mental illness.

Saturday, July 28, 2007


Tonight my girlfriend and I are going to a fetish night in a nightclub. Accordingly, I've spent most of the day in quietude, building up my reserves enough to be in a building jam-packed full of people and noise. I want to go - don't get me wrong - but I need to have my buffers up first so that I can enjoy myself while there. Crowds make me anxious and so does excessive noise but having my sweetie there as a familiar face will help and I know that once I get acclimated, it'll be fine.

Plus I'm wearing an outfit that makes me feel exceedingly sexy.