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Bent

Clearly I relate to music and you see how I share it here. Today is no different. Are you familiar with Matchbox 20? Their lead singer is Rob Thomas, and one of my favorite vocalist that speaks to my soul in his solo career. They have a song called “Bent” that has been weighing on my mind a lot lately. It probably wasn’t the thought behind the composition, but the lyrics ring so perfectly for someone with bipolar (or various other mental/physical disorders) in a relationship. The version I’m going to share at the bottom is closer to the one that I like (than the radio version), which is the acoustic version Rob sang in later years. The demo version off of iTunes is actually my favorite.

“Bent”

If I fall along the way
Pick me up and dust me off
And if I get too tired to make it
Be my breath so I can walk

If I need some other love, then
Give me more than I can stand
And when my smile gets old and faded
Wait around I’ll smile again

Shouldn’t be so complicated
Just hold me and then
Oh, just hold me again

Can you help me I’m bent
I’m so scared that I’ll never
Get put back together
Keep breaking me in
And this is how we will end
With you and me bent

If I couldn’t sleep, could you sleep?
Could you paint me better off?
Could you sympathize with my needs?
I know you think I need a lot

I started out clean but I’m jaded
Just phoning it in
Oh, just breaking the skin

Can you help me I’m bent
I’m so scared that I’ll never
Get put back together
Keep breaking me in
And this is how we will end
With you and me bent

Start bending me, it’s never enough
As I feel all your pieces
Start bending me, keep bending me
Oh, until I’m completely broken in

Shouldn’t be so complicated
Just touch me and then
Oh, just touch me again

Can you help me I’m bent
I’m so scared that I’ll never
Get put back together
Keep breaking me in
And this is how we will end
With you and me will let them
Without understanding
Here I go there again

Can you help me I’m bent
I’m so scared that I’ll never
Get put back together
Yeah, you’re breaking me in
And this is how we will end
With you and me bent

My husband got a degree in educational psychology in the late 60s and is a little stuck in the “old school” of thinking when it comes to mental disorders. It’s interesting how he never makes the comments directed towards me, but he doesn’t hold back making them towards others. I may be bipolar, but I’m not dense. I can put two and two together. Attitudes say a lot, as well. At times he’s very loving and supportive, and others he’s quite distant. I know he loves me, but I guess you could say we’re “bent”.

 
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Posted by on February 27, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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April Winds?

April Winds?

This is my entry for I Heart Faces April challenge: WIND

It is fun with a lot of personality and still shows the wind blowing through her hair. I chose black and white for this image as it brought more focus to the subject instead of all the distracting bright colors surrounding her.
Photo Challenge Submission

 
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Posted by on April 11, 2013 in Challenge, Photography, Visual Art

 

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I AM the Problem Queen

Oh what a pain/bother/problem… I can be!
I have been experiencing a lot of physical problems for quite some time and I honestly don’t KNOW that some may not be psychosomatic… HOWEVER, they FEEL VERY REAL to me! I have been experiencing stomach pains and diarrhea forEVER it seems… Nothing shows in the labs they’ve done, so at least we know I did not pick up some parasite or Giardia in Mexico or out camping… We’ve already determined that the stomach ulcers have returned… My headaches/migraines still persist, yet the MRI is clear, so at least we know there are no tumors… My tailbone (broken a few times in the past..) continues to give me problems. I’ve had a kidney infection that kills my back and won’t go away… (on the 3rd antibiotic for that one…) ENOUGH ALREADY??
We just returned from camping in the Grand Tetons. I can say that I did have an enjoyable time overall, but it was not without my share of discomfort, anxiety meds, and faking it.
Saturday a new branch of Hubby’s family he recently discovered was having a reunion and invited us. Of course he wanted me to accompany him. I survived, but I REALLY am uncomfortable at these things! I went, I was polite, I was in pain and exhausted by the time we were leaving.
NOW he wants to go camping in the Uintah mountains with a group from our neighborhood. Now I’m silently FREAKING OUT AGAIN. I just want to be safe at home. I don’t wish to play 20 questions as to WHY I get anxiety over what they perceive as “little things”… I don’t wish to be judged on why I don’t want to fish, ride the 4 wheeler, go hiking with them, etc…. I am NOT like everyone else… let it GO, PEOPLE! I HATE to be the topic of conversation, useless advice, and criticism. My HELL, can’t I just hibernate in peace??? I’ll let you know if I get out of this… if my kidneys keep this up, maybe I’ll be in the hospital with a good enough excuse! *sigh*
Honestly, I’m not trying to just be a pain/problem… when you don’t feel good and are dealing with various physical ailments, (bipolar crap aside…) the thought of camping isn’t appealing to anyone… I would THINK! Am I right or am I RIGHT?
Problem Queen
by: Danger Mouse and Deniele Luppi
Featuring Norah Jones
Album: ROME
Help me through this déja vu
This crazy state of shock
Have you seen the problem queen
She’s never far away
Away from meAnd it seems all a dream
Some sad luxury
Of when I escaped
It’s just I…Can’t see through this hazy view
And all the doors are locked
We’re only alive when we can be
Defectors from the clock
The clock of all timeShe comes and she goes
But where no one knows
And when Her Highness grows
She shakes meLa la la la la la la la
La la la la laI wake up and you’re gone from me
This lonely share of shock
Helps me to imagine you
But more often than not
I’m all alone
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this song, too.
Just another one I relate to and thought I’d share.
 
 

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Inventing Shadows

I recently followed some of The Voice competition. I was happy that the two I told hubby that were my top choices were actually the top two coming within 2% of each other. Good call, I say!  🙂  ( I also enjoyed Xenia…) I like it when they have a pleasantly unique sound and not just like every other singer we’ve heard before… I found that especially so with Dia and Xenia. I hope they are successful in their singing careers.

The song Inventing Shadows, made original for Dia Frampton really hit home for me. It expresses some of the things that go through my head that I think Hubby must feel about me. He has expressed his love for me, as well as admitting that he doesn’t quite understand me, but tries to. My college son recently expressed that I think too much and people don’t really think or feel many of the negative things that I imagine. I told him he’s probably right, but that doesn’t stop my mind from going there…

I thought that given many of us are in the same boat, we might relate to this song. As I MAY be inventing many more shadows than are actually there, I can tell myself that, but my mind inadvertently returns anyway. Hubby is very patient and tries to be understanding. If he left, I couldn’t blame him… Yet, I would not be in a good place if he did and I pray that day never comes. He’s not really the leaving type… I thank heaven for him even in my darkest moments.

Inventing Shadows – by Dia Frampton

It’s not surprising it could end like this
Your eyes are open even when you kiss
You’re so distant
So cold, so resistant

You see the world in only grey and black
Now how could anybody live like that
Without screaming
Without dying for dreaming

And you stare out the window at the passing cars
And you look at the sky, thank your unlucky stars
No you’re never quite happy right where you are

So you keep on
Inventing shadows
Where there are none
No, there are none
Yeah, you keep on
Inventing shadows
Where there are none
You don’t even see the sun
Can’t you see the sun?

You can’t be shocked that I might want to leave
The way you’re living’s like you’re half asleep
You just drain me
If I go who could blame me?

And you stare out the window at the passing cars
And you look at the sky, thank your unlucky stars
No you’re never quite happy right where you are
Right where you, with all that you are

So you keep on
Inventing shadows
Where there are none
No, there are none
Yeah, you keep on
Inventing shadows
Where there are none
You don’t even see the sun
Can’t you see the sun?

You’re so young, so beautiful
So flawless in my eyes
Don’t you know the world shines
Every time you smile
Why can’t you just smile?

So you keep on
Inventing shadows
Where there are none
No, there are none
Yeah, you keep on
Inventing shadows
Where there are none
You don’t even see the sun
Can’t you see the sun?

You dim the lights in the world I see
How I wish that I could still believe
Time to save me
If I go who could blame me

 

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Two Against One: Hitting HOME

The last week I really thought I was coming out of this funk I’ve been in. I was getting out more, doing more with hubs, even doing laps in the pool and getting on the Gazelle more… We had a sister-in-law whose been very sick for over a decade pass away and a new grandchild born. These things send you through various emotions in themselves, but I was handling it well.

Hubs was heading to So-Cal with his nephew and sister for his brother and the funeral… Then his brother (different father) decided to come down from Oregon early for the reunion to ride to So-Cal with them… There was only room for one more in the vehicle, so they asked if his wife could just stay here with me. ???

Mind you, Hubs is very easy going, hates conflict/peacemaker and always tries to be accommodating and helpful without always thinking of the big picture at times… So of course his response without a second thought was, “I’m sure that’d be fine!” He proceeded to pull the phone away from his mouth and tell me the plan and I wouldn’t mind… would I??? What the HELL was I supposed to say with them listening??? I DO try to fake normalcy as much as possible, after all… I quietly said, “I guess…” kind of like a mouse. He went on and went outside talking when my nervous breakdown ensued graduating to numbness, difficulty breathing and hysterics. 14 year old runs in; I told him it was just an anxiety attack and I’ll be fine and went to my room slamming the door. My best place to cry and scream uncontrollably would be my bed with my face planted in my pillow to muffle the reality of my meltdown.

Now, just so everyone doesn’t think I dislike these relatives… I need to explain. I have this sixth sense concerning people’s attitudes. Frequently I am on the mark to a TEE. Occasionally, I may be slightly off. However, I hardly know them. At the reunions they are frequently in the middle of any conflicts that arise… When chatting with them, frequently harsh opinions of others are shared. So already, they are not the ones I would be comfortable opening up details of my life with… Much less my home and all of its and my imperfections to be subject to condemnation. I am uncomfortable in that type of situation with a close friend or relative, as is… but someone that is not even close? I could probably deal if hubs were here to play host and I could come and go as I need… but to BE THE HOST… having everything I say, do, watch, cook, clean… scrutinized… I don’t think I could survive it!

I called my mom (a nurse) to see how many mg of ativan I could get away with because the dose prescribed wasn’t touching it. She wasn’t much help. After nearly overdosing on something years ago, she’s reluctant to give that kind of advice. I did take another half… and hours later, the other half… I’m alive… ;p

When hubs realized that he hadn’t thought things through very well, he fixed things… but surely it will somehow come up as a topic at the reunion, somehow… How do I get out of that???

I want to share this song with you. It is from Danger Mouse and Daniele Luppi: Two Against One – featuring Jack White. This is from a unique new album just released last month. There are 4 songs that speak to me so loudly that I can’t ignore it… and felt the need to share with you! I will share the others with other posts. I wanted to start with this one. I’m sure people will find different meaning in it as it applies to them. To me it is quite literal in how I can sometimes feel about myself and other’s perception of me.

Two Against One
Album: ROME
by Danger Mouse & Daniele Luppi
(Featuring: Jack White)
Make no mistake I don’t do anything for free
I keep my enemies closer than my mirror ever gets to me
And if you think that there is shelter in this attitude
Wait ’til you feel the warmth of my gratitude.
One, I get the feeling that it’s two against one.
I’m already fighting me, so what’s another one?
The mirror is a trigger and your mouth’s a gun.
Lucky for me, I’m not the only one.
And if it looks to me like you in your reflection
Plan to add your own fight to this dimension.
Then tell it that this ain’t no free-for-all to see,
There’s only three
It’s just you and me against me.
One, I get the feeling that it’s two against one.
I’m already fighting me, so what’s another one?
The mirror is a trigger and your mouth’s a gun.
Lucky for me, I’m not the only one.
Lucky for me, I’m not the only one.
And if your foot’s on to sick a thousand “yes men”
Brand or brake into the middle of this little plan…
Then there’s your plan to hear me say,
That I won’t play around the way, anyway
I plan to plan around them.
One, I get the feeling that it’s two against one.
I’m already fighting me, so what’s another one?
The mirror is a trigger and your mouth’s a gun.
Lucky for me, I’m not the only one.
Lucky for me, I’m not the only one.

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Bipolar: A Little Understanding Goes a LONG Way

I’ve recently been on a board of a celebrity whose reported actions came across to me as bipolar type behavior. I don’t have any idea if he is or has been diagnosed. However, I find it interesting that many who claim to be his fans are quite so critical. I’m not saying anyone should have a free pass for bad behaviour… so don’t get me wrong there… However, I don’t think they understand that if bipolar or a similar condition is something he suffers with, their comments will only make the situation worse. Stigma not only makes it hard for one to recognize it so they can handle it better, but it can be quite debilitating and when you hit a slippery slope towards a downward spiral, it can be very difficult to pull out of it and function the way others expect you to. I can only imagine how difficult it could be to deal with the pressures of that lifestyle. While the creative side flourishes and is appreciated by all, when the other side is manifested, it is met with judgements and relentless pressure and expectations. Privacy does not exist, living in a glass house for everything out of your mouth and every action having the possibility to be disected into interpretations of misunderstanding and outrage.

I hope that the following videos and comments can help shed a little light on this condition, reduce the stigma, and increase a little compassion and understanding.

This video is very good, but I do want to add some comments. The STIGMA attached to this disorder (or any menttal disorder) prevents many from seeking the help that will help them find the balance they need to function better and lead a more productive and fulfilling life. Some of the most brilliant and creative individuals are bipolar.

It’s important to realize that getting the proper diagnosis and the right treatment combination makes a world of difference. I also found that knowing, accepting, and making a conscious effort is so important. Learning my triggers means I can avoid them as best I can. Understanding my limitations and holding back when I start recognizing my symptoms emerging. Things aren’t GREAT, but it’s better… I still experience episodes; but not to the extremes they would otherwise be. I am a rapid cycler and even on my meds, it can be difficult.

One never knows what mood will be prevalent at a given time. Often we can fake it through an event. Sometimes it is the hardest thing to do. Other times it is impossible. For years I faked quite well… lately it has been nearly impossible. I don’t drink or do drugs. I know that if I did, it would consume me. It would be those difficult times to face the world that I would turn to those things just to find the ability to try to fake it through something I’d gotten myself into not knowing the mood that would take over. Being a photographer, I have to fake it a lot. The last couple weddings I did really sent me into a tailspin. Until I find more balance again, I am not even scheduling large events. Smaller sessions aren’t as difficult, but when I’m looking at a all day event where I havee to fake it till I make it… or not… Well, right now that’s not an option and I have to recognize that. I thank God our household is not dependent on my income!

I want to share what the most difficult part of all of this is… the ignorance of others that perpetuates the stigma that we have to deal with. A little understanding and support goes a LONG way. I’m sure I’m not alone in the situation that every critical comment made will repeat a thousand times through my head when I have racing thoughts. Every condemnation that I can bring on myself. Those moments are darkest and I have to find distractions to avoid distructive or hurtful behavior. Then I get the criticism of how I spend my time. I promise, my sporadic time wasters are the better alternative to the things my mind contemplates when not distracted.

The most damaging is when the support from home, family, and friends is absent. There are times that I am faking it quite well, but someone that really is in tune with me can tell, give me a hug, and I sometimes fall to pieces and I may disappear for a bit to get it back in control. But I tell you what, just knowing that they recognise the need and offer that hug means so much more than having them just ignore it and pretend it doesn’t exist. My college son, sister, and mom are probably the most sensitive to my faking. No laughing allowed, but my dog can read me in a heartbeat and gives me great comfort. Pets can be miracle workers!

The moral of this story is to get educated from a good source. (NOT the crackpots that try to promote that it’s not real… TRUST ME… I was in denial for almost a decade… I’ve tried going off meds… NOT WISE!) Have a little compassion and hold your critical tongues. If you want someone’s situation to improve, offer them support. NEVER tell them to get over it or say it’s for attention… OR that you know how they feel! Even if you yourself experience the disorder, there is a wide spectrum and it affects everyone a little different. (That’s why getting the proper meds balanced in the beginning and adjusted as needed is so important…) Well meaning comments can cut like a knife at times. It’s funny how some people that are clueless are so full of useless advice. Just give a hug! Let them know you care. Ask if they have a good support team working with them if you feel the need to address it… I had a lady tell me she knew of a girl that was recently diagnosed that is going to XXX and maybe I should go there… AS IF I am clueless of my condition just because I have it and still experience some difficulties… or decline something because I know my limitations… There is NOT a cure, this is a life sentence… However, theree is education, medication, therapy, and support that makes a WORLD of difference. The ups and downs will continue. Our goal is to minimize the swing of that pendulum.

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Less Than Perfect… NOT!

Sorry about the *F* bomb in the title, This version of the song does not have that in it… If it’s not allowing this to play embedded, it’s worth clicking to watch on youtube, I promise.

This video is misunderstood by many. Some people won’t view it just because of that word in the title. Let me tell you why it means something to me… and likely it will to many of you. Oft times I feel misunderstood. I’ve been falsely accused of things, I’ve been abused. I’ve felt alone and distraugt.

When I’m at my worst, I remind myself of the things I HAVE to stick around for… most importantly, my children. I can’t leave it to anyone else to have empathy for the things they go through and love them even when they don’t follow the path I’d choose for them. If I abandoned them, what would that add to the struggles they face… especially knowing they have a genetic disposition for dealing with bipolar. So, even though I don’t look gothic and I’m definitely not a “cutter”… the thoughts of taking an exit crosses my mind and I have to distract myself and focus on why that is not an option. I relate with the story Pink is trying to convey here. I think she did a good job of it, too.

Here are the lyrics, but I hope you’ll watch the video and tell me what you think.

[Pink – Perfect – Clean Version]

Made a wrong turn
Once or twice
Dug my way out
Blood and fire
Bad decisions
That’s alright
Welcome to my silly life
Mistreated, misplaced, misunderstood
Miss “no way it’s all good”
It didn’t slow me down
Mistaken
Always second guessing
Underestimated
Look, I’m still around…

Pretty, pretty please
Don’t you ever, ever feel
Like your less than
Less than perfect
Pretty, pretty please
If you ever, ever feel
Like your nothing
You are perfect to me

You’re so mean
When you talk
About yourself
You are wrong
Change the voices
In your head
Make them like you
Instead
So complicated
Look how big you’ll make it
Filled with so much hatred
Such a tired game
It’s enough
I’ve done all i can think of
Chased down all my demons
see you same

Pretty, pretty please
Don’t you ever, ever feel
Like your less than
Less than perfect
Pretty, pretty please
If you ever, ever feel
Like your nothing
You are perfect to me

The world stares while i swallow the fear
The only thing i should be drinking is an ice cold beer
So cool in lying and I tried tried
But we try too hard, it’s a waste of my time
Done looking for the critics, cuz they’re everywhere
They don’t like my genes, they don’t get my hair
Stringe ourselves and we do it all the time
Why do we do that?
Why do I do that?
Why do I do that?

Yeah,
Ooh, oh, pretty pretty pretty,
Pretty pretty please don’t you ever ever feel
Like you’re less then, less than perfect
Pretty pretty please if you ever ever feel
Like you’re nothing you are perfect, to me
You’re perfect
You’re perfect
Pretty, pretty please don’t you ever ever feel like you’re less then, less than perfect
Pretty, pretty please if you ever ever feel like you’re nothing you are perfect to me

Source: LYBIO.net

It is our DUTY to make sure our kids know we LOVE them, even when they are difficult and rebelling. Also, not jumping to conclusions and accusations… LISTENING… and DEFINITELY NOT resorting to abuse of ANY kind!  I missed out on the benefit of much of that mercy growing up and I SWORE I wouldn’t do that to my kids. I have trying times with some of them… especially one… but I try to always make sure to give them a hug and tell him I love them. (I think the one got too many of my genes… We clash regularly… *sigh*) I’m the one in the role frequently, too… not living up to others expectations; feeling “less than perfect” most of the time…

I hope you’ll see and appreciate it for how it was intended and apply it as a reminder that we all need a little unconditional love at times.

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Posted by on April 25, 2011 in About Me, Bipolar, Mental Illness, Uncategorized

 

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