I owe you all an explanation: Why haven’t I been blogging?

Well, where do I start?
How about a brief recap. If you guys want to know more, or have questions you can always comment or send me an email (that I will try to answer but facing the computer does still take a lot out of me).

I’ve been depressed and my meds are still being adjusted. I don’t know if I mentioned that I started a job back in January/Feb (I don’t remember exactly when). I’m doing retail work and the job I can cope with but my boss is just–I know it’s rare to get a boss who isn’t a jackass, but this one really does take the cake. When he interviewed me, I told him full disclosure about my mental health problems, and my physical (that I am prone to migraines). Knowing that full well, he hired me anyway and I began working there.
I never got any official training, and I am constantly being admonished because I am not doing something according to store protocol. Yes, I mention that I have not been trained, and I get told that I should just pick it all up, and that if I want to learn more then I need to pay better attention and also eavesdrop on phone calls. Yeah. Really.
There is a lot that really blows my mind about this job in so far as it is not run like any business I have ever worked for.
I won’t go too much into it except to say that my boss is politically incorrect, obnoxious, and very verbal.

Earlier this week my boss told me that he was going to either fire me or cut my hours because I was “too stressed” (which is bullshit in this particular instance) and that I have too many issues to allow me to work there the kind of hours I had been. I told him, fine if that’s what you want, I’ll go. After all it’s at-will employment and either one of us can quit/fire for whatever whenever. Then he said he would be willing to cut my hours if I wanted to stay for that…I said probably (frankly, the lost money is worth it in giving me more time to deal with everything else right now).
So apparently, he is cutting me from 28 hours a week to 10.5 hours a week. It’s a big cut, but who knows, maybe it is what I need right now. He added in caveats that he would want to call me to float / cover other people’s shifts. I said: You can always call me, but I may be doing something else at that time and might not be available.(being honest).
Anyway I tell him I’m very excited about the hours /days cut. Instead of working 5 days a week I’d be working 3, which would give me a break from his general asshole-ness.

Want to hear something sad but funny?
Yesterday he had the nerve to ask me if my husband (mark) was real or if he was actually a delusion or figment of my imagination.

Really. He said that.

And I have guilt out the ass… I have commissions that I promised I’d do, I have a couple of dolls that should have been sent out in January and they are still here in a box because it was just too much to do anything other than come home, feed the cats take my meds and try to sleep. Of course my insomnia is not helped by everything else but I take meds for it and if I don’t take them at 6pm I end up drowsy the next day which is a no-go if I want to drive or do anything really.

In addition to the job situation I also should tell you that Mark went to the UK at the end of December 2016 to to try to sort out the medical care situation for his father who had fallen and hurt himself. In the time that he was there his father got worse, his mother very needy and manipulative, and his sister not helping at all. Fast Forward to now, April 28th and he is _still_ in the UK, still trying to sort things out. His father had a few medical emergencies and now is in the hospital and has been for about 2 weeks. It’s been determined that he will need to go into a nursing home with full care because he can’t care for himself at all. Of course, this is an issue because Mark’s mother can’t live on her own, so she will need to go into adult community or something like that.

So yea, Mark is still in the UK, and it’s doubtful that he will be back before the beginning of June. It’s a long time to go without seeing the man I’ve been married to for the last 10 years, and aside from the physical distance, there’s things here at the house he does that I am simply not capable of doing. I’m doing my best, but it’s not good. The winter was the worst because we got clobbered with snow and I had to resort to begging my neighbor (down the road a 3/4 of a mile or a mile something like that) to help me shovel out. We’ve reached an agreement that I give him a steak and he does the driveway.

Add to this that I had problems with my balance due to some of the meds and fell down and sprained my wrist and fractured the other. I also fell off my chair and whacked my head, and managed to break both of my pinky toes over the last 3 months. And two weeks back they found another fracture in my wrist. Don’t know if its new or old or what. Ugh.

And at the end of February Electra began suffering from diarrhea. It didn’t pass after a week and I took her to the vet. He medicated her, tested her, did a work up and still the diarrhea persisted. He wanted to hospitalize her so he could give her fluids (against dehydration, etc) and to continue to try to figure out the issue. I was a wreck emotionally, no Electra, No Mark, asshole boss, snow and being lonely and feeling pretty isolated from everything in general. And of course, even more depressed and anxious.
She was hospitalized for more than a month.
I finally got her back 2 weeks ago (with semi solid turds the best we could manage from her at that point), with the understanding that she may need to be re-hospitalized if we can’t get to the bottom of this sooner. Tests are expensive, and vets are expensive and I love Electra with all my heart so all I can do is agree.
My vet told me he and the office staff all got attached to Electra, and that he personally felt a spiritual and emotional bond to her. Which helped to set me at ease. He cares and we’re all working on what’s best for her.
(in fact we have another appointment for her this morning, and I’m optimistic about it because for the past few days her turds have been more solid than not. Which points to this being as he suspected an irritable bowel/intestinal/stomach issue (when I took her home he gave me special food for her and it seems to be doing the job. It will mean keeping her on it for the rest of her life (or until her innards decide they don’t like it anymore).

Anyway, that’s it all in a nutshell (get the pun? I’m a nut in a shell??)
I want to be able to pick up my dolls and stuff but I’m not there yet. I have a few sitting on my computer tower (and they are covered with dust.)
I hope soon.

It’s 3:53am do you know where your dolls are?

Yeah. For the most part. There are a couple who are MIA but I’m sure that I’ve put them someplace that is “safe”…for some reason or another. I’ve been awake since about 12:30 and spent a couple of hours tossing, turning and looking at Pinterest on my phone while snuggling with Jess. I’m so happy to finally have a lap/chest cat again. 🙂

I’m slowly dealing with my depression. I’ve been switched onto some new meds last week, and an additional one on Monday so we’ll see how it plays out. I feel much better now that I am out of crisis and don’t have to have someone watching me full-time. Ugh.

Mark will be heading off to england again next week. We both know it’s not the best time for him to go, but his mother (who is geriatric and afaik has everything wrong in the universe with her) is having operations done on both of her eyes and she needs someone to take care of her and the house and her alzheimer-diseased husband -nope. Not gonna be much help there. His sister who lives in London, can’t be assed, so it falls to Mark. They have a strange family dynamic. (Or I don’t know, maybe it’s a normal one, since I had something way beyond that_).

To try to keep from hitting another bad patch, I have agreed to do two things while Mark is away:

  1. Make as many props and accessories as I can for the sets and dioramas I want to get done this year. Small projects, sure, but there are massive amounts of things to be made and if I do a couple every day that will help (if nothing else I’ll have some stuff made LOL)
  2. Take 1 photo each week of the same diorama — each time decorated totally differently. That will take effort and time and I hope I can keep my motivation up while doing it.

Anyway just wanted a quick check in.

Thanks everyone who’ve emailed and stuff. It goes a long way toward making me feel less alone.

e

NDR: everything was looking up…and then BAM!

This is a personal post, not about dolls. So if you want dolls please wait until I post something else, please?

Okay, let’s be clear here. I’ve been struggling a lot with my depression and have only within the last two to three weeks started to feel more “rawr” and a lot more motivated to do things in 1/6 and finish outstanding projects and commissions.

Hey, I was loving that.

I got two commissions finished, I started making doll jewelry, I picked up another commission that I had outstanding and I felt all kinds of inspiired and jonesin’ to make stuff and try new techniques. When I’m in that state it is fucking great.

It was like how I used to be before my mental health really began to be a big problem for me.

Hey, I know everyone has their problems and issues and I am not the only one out there. Knowing that doesn’t make things any easier or nicer. For the majority of my life I’ve had dysthymia and for the most part I coped. Along the way though, through the years something changed in my chemical/biological make up and I was treated to repeated bouts of major depression that are awful. My third psychiatrist explained that what I had was basically a low wave that was constantly there (the dysthymia) and over that I had a larger wave (the major depression disorder) that they were mostly separate except for when the two periodically intersected with each other. When that happens it becomes everything that I can do to get out of bed and _do_ anything. Being depressed really wears on your soul and except for brief sparks of “up” it’s a nasty thing.

I’ve gone through all kinds of therapy and attempts to manage it. Some worked better than others, and I’ve learned to try to avoid triggers. I’ve taken many different medications in the past (along with therapy) and without therapy and gone for periods with no medication at all (generally when I had no health care coverage).

So anyway, I’m going to talk about this a little more.

I feel I need to explain why there are long silences on the blog, why I haven’t done a crap-ton of photographs or photostories. Why I haven’t done much repainting, and customizing.

The answer is pretty simple. It is because of my stupid depression. I hate it but am still learning to live with it 30+ years after diagnosis. I still struggle and sometimes things get to difficult to bear. I have to credit my cats initially for keeping me from committing suicide, and later (now) my cats and my husband keep me from that.

So along with my various dorms of depression I also suffer from what my doctor called crippling anxiety yesterday (I’ll get into that a bit further down this post). I get panic attacks in the middle of the night, or day, being social and around a gathering of more than a few people makes me feel sick to my stomach because my brain is trying to figure out the “right” thing to do/say/be because of that. Meanwhile all my muscles tense up and stay that way. I don’t grind my teeth but I subconsciously clench my teeth and developed TMJ. I cannot relax the muscles in my face, and my shoulders become rigid.

It sucks.

It used to be I was moderately anxious (I always have been, even as a child when I was frequently told I was a worry-wort.) but like the depression it’s gotten worse through the years. I have been medicated for it, I’ve tried therapy for it, and CBT and sometimes I can manage it pretty well. But a lot of the time–not.

I thought that the best way to try to push against my social anxiety (different from my general anxiety) would be to force myself to go out and meet new people and socialize. I have been forcing myself for the last 3 years to be part of a group called the Society for Creative Anachronism. It’s a way for me to try to get out with people which of course is also supposed to help me cope with my depression. I like the SCA, but like with my 1/6 stuff, my involvement depends highly on my state of mind. I’ve met a lot of cool people, a few douches and learned new things. That’s all great stuff (well, not the douches). But I remain in the grasp of anxiety.

Did I mention that I like things to be fairly stable? Yeah, I do. When things stop being stable, or something pops up that I wasn’t prepared for I mentally freak out and it isn’t pretty. This is where I am now.

I was tooling along having escaped the deeper depression and was doing my stuff and feeling good. Not great, but good and to me, that’s probably equal to everyone elses great. I am still having severe anxiety and it started affecting my quality of life. The fact that my mind and body remained under constant stress didn’t/doesn’t help my health. So anyway…

I went to my doctor (who up til this point had been doing my med-management with some reluctance) yesterday. I took my husband with me because I wanted her to have someone else’s POV on how I was doing/living etc, and also, because sometimes it is just plain nice to have some support when going to the doctor’s.

She told me that my depression and anxiety are too much for her to continue to take on and that I would need to find a psychiatrist to do my meds because she feels they need to be changed but as she is a PCP she isn’t familiar with all the new treatments and drugs since she doesn’t have to read that literature for her continuing medical education reqs.

I wasn’t really surprised, but I ended up crying anyway. I felt like things just suddenly crumbled and that pylon of stability was gone. She thinks I may do better on anti-psychotics to deal with the anxiety but that I would still need medication for the depression…and she said it is much farther out of her scope than she feels comfortable with. Hearing that, knowing that was the case messed with my head (I have abandonment issues) and dropped the “good” mood/state I was in right down to full panic-mode. I didn’t sleep last night, I binge ate, and in general feel crummy. BUT I am trying to remain positive about how this will work out. It’s got to get better. It really does. I am so freakin tired of being on a constant low. And I’m super sick of being so on edge about everything.

So now I am on the hunt (again) for a psychiatrist to 1) accept my medical insurance, 2)is accepting new patients, 3) isn’t much further than an hour’s drive since I don’t know how often I may have to go.

Right now I’m pushing myself to try to keep doing the things I was doing before I went to the doctor’s. Playing with my dolls, thinking about scripting them for photostories, trying to get my repainting skills back, posting on forums.

If I disappear from posting–now you’ll know why.

NDR: Being honest isn’t always easy…

It really isn’t when it comes to me discussing how my life is going and more importantly, my depression. No one really wants to talk about it. And I don’t in general like to fill my blog or tweets or flickr up with talking about it–because ultimately I’m on my own with it.

It isn’t so much that I hide it–I’m very honest about having it and suffering with it from my teens onward but that when I hit patches I can go one of 2 ways: I focus on only one thing or interest and try to use that to push through until I can get to a more tolerable spot mentally and emotionally OR 2) I try to carry on as usual and keep hoping that it will improve or I will encounter something that makes me feel some kind of interest or whatever to help me drag my psyche out of the inertia it ends up trapped by. Or 3) I have a major depressive episode and I see a doctor and either get put on meds or am hospitalized.

So. Yes. I have been suffering.
Because I couldn’t make #1 happen and #2 wasn’t helping.
Nothing I did was making a difference.
I don’t think I realized exactly how bad it’s been the last 6 or 7 months.
Bad. Unpleasant. Fatiguing. Pointless. Useless.
Those words don’t really cover it.
I contemplated alternatives. I thought about what the world, my cats and my husband would have to deal with if I wasn’t around. I have been a “downer” and a “bummer”. And even though I knew it I could not seem to do anything to change it. I thought a lot of it was related to the severe insomnia I suffer from. My doctor insisted that I was suffering from a generalized anxiety disorder but she wouldn’t take my concerns seriously. I was told it was all anxiety related. Which of course made me feel worse. I have been hospitalized for depression in the past and I know enough about myself to know what I’m experiencing.

The last time I saw my doctor mentioned that it was worse and that things were getting much more difficult to cope with and that the depression was making my life pretty much not worth the while to live.
That sounds more dramatic than it was.
It has just been the case that doing anything took so much more effort than I had. Interacting with people was about putting on a smiley face and then crying when I got home. All the things I took joy in — my dolls, my action figures, my photography all were too much for me to do or consider. It was picking up a craft knife and not thinking about crafting.

So about two months ago she prescribed 2 different things for me: 1 is an anti anxiety med and the other is a drug that is supposed to help me to sleep and also, have the added use of being efficacious as an antidepressant.

Anyway, I’ve been taking them and I am finally starting to feel closer to how I used to feel, back when my depression was relatively controlled.
And you know what?
I am starting to “play” with my dolls again!
I can feel the twinges of wanting to write scripts for them again. And to work on diorama projects that have been languishing half-begun or still stuck in planning stages.
I don’t feel good. But I feel better. And the fact that I am able to start looking at this stuff again without feeling guilty or like a failure must be a good thing.
I’ll update more soon.
Thanks 🙂

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