Saturday, May 31, 2014

That Pesky Blue

Sometimes the best way to be hopeful is to know you're not alone. As much as they may want to, non-Borderlines will never understand Borderlines the way other Borderlines do. But really that can be said for any shared trait. For example, I have a friend who is an alcoholic. I can be sympathetic, but I will never understand alcoholism the way other alcoholics do.

I recently joined some BPD groups on Facebook and shared some BPD struggles. Without going into detail, below are some of the comments that were left on my posts:

"Thank you for asking this question. It's nice to be able to admit it without feeling judged."

"Yep, I definitely understand that! "

"Omg.....I don't post much but I do read most all.....but this one hits home oh so close."

"Omg yes I'm dealing with this now."

"I agree. I can totally understand you."

"All the time, you're definitely not alone."

"phew, I'm not the only one! good things."

"I think you are doing great! You've identified many times that you were able to resist doing things you normally would. He might not recognize your progress but we can!!! It can't happen all at once and you are getting some good practice in. Keep reminding yourself of the good choices you've made and forgive yourself for little backslides."

"Well I think you are doing good from the sounds of it."

"I'm a stranger and so on, but it sounds like you have your head on pretty straight around this. You're right: you ARE doing better. It sounds like you're doing great, actually."

All that? It makes me feel like I'm not alone. It reminds me that I have made progress, because I am getting feedback from the only people who truly understand Borderlines, other Borderlines. You see, to a non-Borderline doing something like sobbing hysterically on the phone because I can't see them may seem like it's a sign they are not doing better. But what that person may not know is 3 years ago instead of just sobbing, I may have texted them 40 times, cut myself and sent a picture, showed up at their house, called them nasty names, or worse.

We all have something we need to focus most on. For me it's relationships. But even if it's baby steps, progress is still progress. That's why it's so important for me to remember that the only person allowed to judge my progress is me. It's like judging a person for being over weight. You have no idea, that person may have actually been even heavier. No, he or she isn't "thin" by society standards, but they have made progress.

It's the same with BPD. I may have set backs, but if you compare me to me, it's obvious how much better I'm doing. If someone wants to judge me based on each little incident, and not the over all. Well, that says more about them than me.

Plus, "if your slate is clean then you can throw stones. If it is not, then leave her alone."

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Therapy Notes: Diving in Deeper

Pete, if I haven't mentioned, is really good at his job. When I worked with him I witnessed the wildest, most out of control kid calm down in the blink of an eye at just the sound of his voice. A few times when I struggled with my one to one he would come over and sooth her like some pied piper of children.

My opinion of his seemingly effortless way with children often sparked two responses in me. The first was one of admiration, inspiration. He was like the god of children to me, glowing from his pedestal of pure perfection. The other brought out feelings of jealousy, rage, resentment. How dare he be better than me at this! He's got to be good at everything and he has to take this away from me!

Classic splitting. Idealization and devaluation all in one. I brought up the issue with my therapist and we delved deeper into it, and discovered there was more to it. Old feelings, as she likes to say.

The idealization part of it is pretty easy to figure out. In my eyes, in times like these, he can do no wrong. It's nothing new. It's very much a BPD thing to have someone on a pedestal. However, there was more to the opposite end of the spectrum. The feelings of rage and jealousy touched upon my fear of rejection, and my self-confidence.

Growing up I literally thought the only thing I was better at than my sister was the fact I was thinner. A couple years ago she lost a significant amount of weight and I began to fear she would become thinner than me. There are very few things I am confident in; being good with kids is one of them. So if I perceive someone is better than me (in this case, Pete) then I am jealous and resent them because I believe they are trying to take the one thing I can do better than them.

Of course Pete's natural way with kids doesn't mean he's better than me or worse than me. It just means he's good at what he does, and instead of learning from him I devalue myself and forget all the times I calmed a kid down. Maybe not in the same way he did, but when the class' teacher was gone who did all the kids ask for all the time? Who did they go to? Me. When I had Pete come in to sit with Chicken Little she was upset that I was leaving her. So I am good at what I do.

Then there is the rejection. This I didn't understand at first because the situation didn't have anything to do with me. He wasn't rejecting me. Except in my subconscious I do feel rejected, simply because someone I care about is giving attention to someone else. The other part of it is, when he's comforting kids I probably am seeing it as paternal nurturing. The type of nurturing that was lost on me when my father emotionally abandoned me when he married the woman who emotionally abused me. So part of the jealousy I feel is actually jealousy towards the kids for getting that nurturing. He makes the kids feel safe and that's something I was deprived of growing up.

I am not only splitting (idealization/devaluation); but also fearing imaginary rejection, devaluing my own skills and self-worth, bringing up old feelings.

This is comforting because I can remind myself of this analyzing of thoughts when he's telling me a story and I feel that twinge of jealousy, or when my mind starts telling me things like "all the kids like him, you'll never be as good as him. He's better than you." Knowing that there is much more to my thoughts helps me move past them.

This is what talking about mental illness achieves. Deeper understanding of one's self.


Saturday, May 24, 2014

A Journey Back: 2007-2009 (24-27)

Note: I deleted any journals from 2007, so there isn't much I remember from that time. 
  • These were the years of severe cyber-bullying. Also, when my ED page was made
  • 2007 I officially joined the CAP. I was living in Beverly at the time, so I had to drive back and forth.
  • Loki was born in 2007.
  • Eventually my BF, Mike, and I broke up and my other roommates moved out. I had to get my own roomates, and they ended up screwing me over.
  • I did have a steady job in the end of 2007, but left it to move to western, MA
  • January, 2008 I officially move to western, MA. I also had my Honda around this time (I think I got it in 2007).
  • 2008 was my first Haven.
  • October 2008 was the first Academy of Music show. I was Trixie.
  • 2008 was when I dated T, and broke up with T, and had the biggest melt down of my life. It's also when I fell in love with a girl. But, we all know that story. Because of this I went into DBT and since then I've been consistent about it.
  • 2009 had a lot of ups and downs. It's when I got involved with URO, Worlds Apart Games (WAG), Graphic Novel Addicts (GNA). I won my first Haven contest (bead queen!). I dated Moon in 2009, started talking to T again, went to my first Wicked Faire, met and became friends with Terrance (and got him to come to our Academy show). However, it was also when I bullied my friend H, got suspended from cast, had my first holidays without my Aunty F (because she was living in a home) or at my Aunt and Uncles. It was a year of a lot of job changes, money problems, I think I got evicted, and I dealt with a lot of drama.
  • I was also getting better at recognizing faults in myself. I was a bit more in control, and felt bad when I lost it.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Or a Gun to My Head

My BPD feels like this 400lb guy pinning me down and I have nothing and no one to help me, to free me. It feels like an abusive relationship, except the abuser is my own brain. It feels like the emotional part of my brain is driving 100mph, while the rational part just goes along for the ride. Meekly trying to object, but getting yelled at by the emotional bully. It feels like my own brain has a knife against my throat.

It makes me feel fragmented. Like the emotional part is another person taking over.

Emotion: "Anger, outburst, push away, have a melt down....."
Rational: "Um, maybe you should take a step back."
Emotion: "No. This is the only way. Blind rage, splitting."
Rational: "Yes, but, you might make it worse. Just try..."
Rational: "Stop, stop. Please don't do this. You're going to regret this."
Emotion: ::lays waste, wreaks havoc:: "Okay, Rational. I'm done. Have fun cleaning up my mess."
Rational: "......"

It's gotten easier to manage, to control. But the scars are there, and if I don't keep fighting, keep pushing back. My BPD will pull the trigger.

A Deadly Foe

I wrote this down in my regular journal, and decided to share it here is well. I do a lot of free writing in my journal, so this is going to seem fragmented. Hopefully it makes sense. I'm not sure what prompted me to right it, but in a way it made a lot of things click for me.

BPD. Borderline Personality Disorder. The serious, debilitating disorder that has laid dormant in me possibly since birth, that was triggered after a childhood and early adolescence of abuse, neglect, and abandonment, and that I didn't truly start fighting back against until I was in my late twenties.

A disorder that has gripped me, controlled me, shaken me. Severe mental illness that has not only damaged me, but people around me. A disorder that is both difficult to deal with and treat. Fears of rejection and abandonment stem from the neglect and abandonment of my past, from my Dad. Angry outbursts, rage, threats. A profile of an angry teen, constantly being screamed at by her Mother. Fear that people hate me, are angry with me. A projection of myself. Of a girl who hates herself sometimes. Who still feels 15. Cutting, promiscuous sex, over-spending, trying to not have any down or alone time. An avoidance of having and emptiness, a hopeless feeling. Forever trying to distract. A fragmented girl. An intellectual adult, avoiding emotion, and an angry, resentful child. Both me, disassociation.

Dead. My BPD has wanted me dead and it still wants me dead. It fights me, knocks me down. It is stubborn and persistent. DBT. A lifeline. The object I use to strike back as I'm pinned down on the ground by this harrowing, resilient disorder. It's the soft mat that I fall on after I'm pushed off the cliff. My disorder maniacally laughing. My BPD hates me, it wants me dead. It's tried. It may have succeeded if I didn't act or fight back.

I wouldn't want someone else to kill me, so why would I let my own brain?

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Always With Me

I am going to look for a slightly bigger bag tomorrow. Why? Because I want to make sure I am never without the following two books. Part of the problem I have with implementing skills useful to me from DBT is that I never have the tools to do it spur of the moment. Two of those skills are art and writing. Sooo..

Sketch book: To draw, doodle, scribble, or whatever. 

Journal: Long entries, short entries, angry tyraids, positive words.

These are  two very powerful DBT tools/skills for me. I hope to implement them a lot more!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

A Journey Back: 2005(cont)-2006 (23-24)

  • October or November was the first time I was diagnosed with BPD. However, I don't think it was "official" and I was skeptical because at that point I was always being diagnosed with something different.
  • While working at Game Stop I dated my third key. I was convinced I was in love with him after one or two months. While dating him I was also super obsessed with my boss and would constantly write about wanting to hook up with him. I also put him on a pedestal the same way I did my Vector boss. This time I "really meant" it when I said I loved my boyfriend, and my obsession with my GS boss was some how different than the one with my Vector boss. I ended up cheating on my boyfriend with my boss. Then when things started to fall apart with my boyfriend and me I did nothing but stalk him when he asked for space. When he broke up with me I wrote about how I was going to die because we were meant to be together and I could never date another guy. The night I was broken up with my sister and I had to drive to Wilmington from Medford to pick up my Mother who was too drunk to drive home. Later that night I hooked up with my boss about 12 hours after the break up, and I hooked up with him and two other guys within a week of the break up. Clearly my ex was "the one".
  • My boss and I were actually good friends. However, whenever he said "maybe" to coming over (and this was usually followed by a vague, "if you feel like stopping by") instead of going about my day, I'd literally sit at home and not go to sleep until the wee hours of the morning. I'd also get really upset at him, and then beg him not to leave when he tried to walk out because of my verbal abuse. I texted and called him all the time, and I always got sad whenever we did hang out and it ended. The thing that was most consistent with him, is his wanting to fuck me and talk dirty to me. He'd go from not wanting to be friends to telling me he was horny. I spent a lot of time trying to get us a threesome and ended up hooking up with a few random girls (he was involved in a couple).
  • I would spend large amounts of money of people I had affection for. Sometimes skipping bills and going into debt to do so. I would then ask people to borrow money, and lie to them so they didn't know it was cause I blew mine on other people.
  • In April of 2005 I left my friend stranded in Belmont because I was mad at him.
  • I once told my friend I was "going to get fucked up and play with knives."
  • In June of 2005 I threatened to kill myself in front of my therapist. They told security to detain me. My Dad picked me up and my therapist told him to take me to the hospital, but my Dad drove me home.
  • In June of 2005 I did one of my first nude shoots then sucked the guys dick for extra money
  • In June of 2005 I was sexually harassed by my assistant manager at Game Stop. It ended up turning into a huge mess.
  • In June of 2005 I ended up hooking up with my ex from Game Stop. We started dating in July of 2005 while he was dating another girl, but the other girl didn't know.
  • In July of 2005 I met up with a guy for a photo shoot. He ended up trying to get sex out of me and grabbed my ass.
  • In Aug of 2005 My Mom found out about all the stuff I was doing and I was given 30 days to move out. She told me to leave and not come back. I ended up at Alewife station that night (don't remember after that).
  • In 2005 I went to cambridge hospital to get eval and meds. Looking back I did it to impress someone else.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

A Journey Back: 2000-2005 (18-22)

Continuing my old journals reading spree.
  • While at MCLA I got in trouble for drinking, was suicidal, threatened my RD, flipped out on friends, was on academic probation, plagiarized, and was pretty much forced to leave.
  • On two separate occasions in 2002 I got in a fight with my mother, walked out of the house, and went to the police station. On one of those occasions I had tried to swallow pills in front of her and she slapped me.
  • I continued to hang out with the people from high school that treated me poorly.
  • My Mother has told people she hates me and can't stand me, she constantly put me down and insulted me.
  • In August of 2002 I was sexually assaulted by my Dad's co-worker. When I told my Dad he passed it off like it was not big deal and that's just how the guy was.
  • In November of 2002 I wrote that I had "traits of a personality disorder". At that point I was diagnosed with either bipolar or bipolar II.
  • I always wrote about how I hated my Mom, how I felt like she controlled me, and how I'd live on the street if I had to. I once wrote that I felt like a prisoner in my own home.
  • There were occasions where I'd allow sexual things done to me (and have people watch or take pics) while I was under the influence of weed and alcohol.
  • An ex used me for sex and then broke up with me in an email, and told me I drive him nuts.
  • I met a guy at a karaoke bar who "broke up" with his girl friend for me. Because he was sooooo into me the first time meeting me. Right.
  • I was obsessed with every guy that came my way. Every guy I dated was always, "the one" or "different from the last". I was always, "really meant it this time". I'd always make fact lists about them, and apparently things like having a favorite movie in common was really important. I was always worried, panicked, paranoid when a boy wouldn't call me back. I also threatened to slash my wrists because a boy wouldn't hang out with me. There are guys I dated that I can't remember at all.  In retrospect a lot of the guys I dated probably only dated me for sex.
  • I had sex with a friend for a favor.
  • I apparently had more unprotected sex than I remember. Yes, before you ask, I'm clean. My most recent test was actually less than a couple months ago.
  • I stole a lot. From jobs, stores, family.
  • When I worked at Vector marketing I was wicked obsessed with my boss and convinced I was in love with him. I also lied a lot there. I even wrote about my Aunt being a loser because she stuck up for me when said boss suspended my pay for 4 demos. I thought that he cared about me, but in retrospect he only cared about me selling knives. Even a long while after I left Vector I was always worried impressing him or what he thought. Eventually I became the girl he cheated on his now wife with.
  • I cut myself for the first time at 21.
  • I started making myself throw up when I was 22.
  • In 2004 I joined and was sworn into the Air Force reserves, but then backed out
  • I was in a psych hospital in 2004 (I thought it was April, but apparently it was January or November, I can't remember).
  • In 2005 I tried ODing at a mall, had to have my stomach pumped (I actually thought that happened in 2004), but my friends convinced the hospital to let me go.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Things I've Come to Realize

  • The reason yelling is a big trigger for me is probably because I got yelled/screamed at a lot at a youngin'
  • When I was younger I wanted to work with adolescence. I've been focused on trying to find a job where I get to work with young kids (latency age). I was considering anyone above 15 too old. Why? adolescence is usually 12-early 20s. Then I realized. My issues really started manifesting at 14, 15, 16 years old. So even though I'm 31 now, and people that age are youth to me, I still consider them "around my age". Because in my mind I am still that insecure 15 year old. 
  • I was very, very angry as a teen.
  • I've had BPD longer than I've realized.
  • I was always saying how I was "really going to change this time" and "really meant it." I realize now that it was always to impress other people or for someone else.

A Journey Back: 1993-2000 (age 10-17)

I've pretty much kept every diary I've ever had. Last weekend while at my Mom's I decided to take them home (I have stuff in storage there). Over the past couple of days I've been going through them, starting with my first one in 1993 (when I was 10). Reading these has really put a lot of things in perspective for me. I won't bore you with every single entry that caught my eye, but rather the details.
  • From a young age I had inappropriate attachments to older men. Teachers, family members (I had a crush on my cousin, step brother, and step uncle...WTAF?), counselors at the YMCA. In high school I said some things a 15 and 16 year old shouldn't be saying to her male teachers. Or writing about!
  • I had attachment issues. I apparently once told a teacher I hated her because she wouldn't let me come over her house for dinner.
  • In high school I was obsessed with several different boys. I'd be really inappropriate, stalk them (in school and online), and I was convinced that I was always "really in love this time." Because of this I was called a stalker, whore, sick bitch told to stay away, called a psycho bitch, reported for harassment, and one object of my affection told his friends to "get that girl away from me."
  • I had guys date me out of pity. I dated several guys in HS. None of them lasted more than a month. I always got super attached super fast.
  • At one point in high school I was told by a teacher that no one would care if I died.
  • Kids harassed me, threatened to beat me up.
  • I was called a "psycho bitch" by a teacher in high school
  • I started therapy when I was 14
  • I was street harassed by an older man when I was 17
  • I was made fun of by teachers, family, and friends for being "too sensitive".
  • My "friends" in high school were constantly back stabbing me, lying to me, leaving me out, and pretending to like me.
  • Junior year I was paid to help someone cheat on a final assignment, and was caught
  • I've had at least two of my friend's Mom's tell them to stay away from me. One said I was trouble and one thought I was bulimic.
  • I was constantly being screamed at by my Mother. Because of this I lied to her a lot (I was scared of being yelled at).
  • I always felt like my Mom favored my sister.
  • When I was 17 I was talked into doing sexual things with a boy related to my Aunt's (through marriage) family. So, not related to me.
  • I was very very angry as a young teen. There are many entries saying I hope my mother dies. I also used a LOT of sexist and racist slurs (calling people fags, gay, queer, sluts, etc).
  • In 1998 my Mom had to call the police on this girl Melissa Larson who had been bullying me. She started calling the house and harassing me.
  • I was 15 the first time I was suicidal.
I think I pretty much wrote the autobiography of a BPD kid. I also realize now why yelling is a big trigger for me. Because my Mom always yelled at me (as well as called me named).

It's hard to read some of these, but it's also insightful.

Now here is the really interesting thing. I didn't write much about the abuse from my step mom (it did happen, several people have confirmed it. So, it's not something I made up.) I wonder if it was me not wanting to remember it? I mean, unless it's in some the entries I couldn't read (damn cursive, lol).

Friday, May 9, 2014

My Spoon is Too Big!

Rejection is a big thing for people with BPD. Even the tiniest hint of rejection, whether real or imagined, can send us spiraling into darkness. When I was younger I remember being overcome with sadness anytime my cousin went back home to NH after visiting. I didn't realize it then, but now I see that it was parts of my BPD surfacing. I can probably pinpoint many times in my childhood where I felt intense emotion over perceived rejection. Now, you may be thinking, "but Hazel, that's not rejection. He just went home." And you'd be right, but that my friends is what makes BPD what it is. Someone cancelling plans, a therapist announcing the end of a session, a lunch date ending, all of these things people with BPD perceive as rejection. We know it's not rational, but when the emotional part of our brain takes over rational isn't an option.

Recently I've been having these feelings. Pete and I have been talking about coming up to each other's camp sites over the summer. I'm really excited about it (I love taking people to the lake), but then my brain starts to think like this, "It probably won't happen until June or July, which will mean the summer is going by, the warm weather always goes by fast, then it will be close to the end of the year, then it will be next year, and I'll be older, and it will end....." I think about the possibility of him moving away (he's mentioned it, but no plans). My mind jumps into the future, and it becomes a struggle to stay in the moment. But I've learned, and I've gotten better at it. I think about all the times I thought I was going to feel a certain way forever, and how those times are barely a passing thought now. I think about how future me will not be the same as present me, and how everything changes.

I guess there is a word for my "relationship" status. Solo Polyamory. Basically I am seeing two people, but I am not ready to be serious with either of them. I am mainly focusing on myself and improving myself. That's great, but even that causes me anxiety. I don't know if things will work out with us, but I can see a future with T. More importantly,  I see stability. Am I saying I want to jump into things with him, no. What I'm saying is, the thought of being with him long term seems real, and doesn't cause me anxiety. He's the only guy I've been with where my BPD doesn't get triggered (with the exception of our breakup, but that's a long story). He's the only guy that makes me consider not doing things the way I've always been stuck on. Even six years after our initial breakup we're still close friends (I think cutting off contact for so long helped with that). But while all this is great it would also mean the end of my other relationship. Then I think about never cuddling him again, never hearing him sing to me again, and more intense things  like him finding and falling in love with someone.

But I have to remind myself that anything can happen. That I need to live in the moment. I could fall so in love with T that I have no romantic feelings for Pete. Pete could move away next month. Things could not work out with T and I end up with Pete. Things could not work out with either. The point is, there's so many what if's and maybe's that trying to figure it out just causes anxiety.

I think the following quote from HIMYM sums things up really well;

 In a moment like that, when what's really happening is too intense to deal with, sometimes it's best... To leave it unspoken, and just enjoy each other's company instead.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Free Your Mind

In the book that I am currently reading, the author says the following, "Sooner or later, we all encounter intense emotion that we can't outrun. It may be fear that arises in a truly disturbing situation or the feeling of being very hooked and about to be swept away./Perk up when strong feelings come along and then, instead of trying to get rid of them, you move toward them and get curious."

DBT is based on Buddhist practice such as this. Teaching to feel the emotion, experience, but not to judge it or analyze it. The author also talks about how she would dye for something to go wrong so she could practice her new skills. I feel like I am this way. I approach life with, as it says in the book, a warrior-like spirit (that is committing to embrace the world just as it is). I'm doing good, I'm positive, so I feel I can take on anything. But then when something bad does happen, I am not always prepared.

Feeling the emotions is really difficult for me. Because while I know they are thoughts, and the feeling will go away. It's so overwhelming. My relationship with J seems like another life, but at the time of the breakup I felt like I would never stop hurting. My emotions get so intense, I want to run and hide. I think this is why living one day at a time, one moment at a time is so important.

As I mentioned a couple of posts ago I have a lot going on/in the works. I'm volunteering at the animal shelter, waiting to hear on Big Brothers/Big Sisters, meeting with someone at NAMI to volunteer in their child and adolescent network as well as In Our Own Voices, I became a prison pen-pal through (transgender female, bisexual, wiccan, into LGBT+ rights, and feminist views). I'm also about to adopt a second kitten so Desmond can have a playmate.

I also started doing Yoga. Right now I just do a 30 minute beginners video, but it's so relaxing and it makes me super aware of my mind and body. I've been trying to hard to get into meditation, but I've been trying to do it other people's way. I thought there was something wrong with me because I wasn't super into sitting still and breathing for 20 minutes. To me yoga is a form of meditation. In fact wiki defines it as, "The physicalmental, and spiritual practices or disciplines which originated in ancient India with a view to attain a state of permanent peace of mind in order to experience one's true self."

I am a kinetic person. I like to move around, I like to engage. This is why self-sooth works well for me because I am able to use my hands and my other senses. Yoga allows me to be kinetic as well as relaxed and focused. I'm hoping once I start working that I can start going to actual classes.

I'm trying to take one day at a time. This means not waiting for something awful to happen. If I do that then I will never enjoy the present moment.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Mindfulness Reminders

Here is a list of some of the mindfulness reminders I came up with in my "Positive Living" posts. Some I came up with on my own, and some I got from other places.

  • If I worry about the future I will not enjoy today.
  • I am feeling the way I am because I do not feel grounded. I have uncertainty right now, but I can work through it.
  • These feelings feel icky now, but they will not always be this way. I won't always feel the same.
  • This won't last forever. Things will change.
  • I will not die alone. 
  • If I worry about what may or may not be then I won't enjoy the present.
  • One day at a time.
  • Let it Be.
  • If I focus on tomorrow I won't enjoy today.
  • Tomorrow is a new day.
  • Don't dwell. People stumble, it's okay not to be perfect.
  • Life is hard, but with the hard comes the amazing. I can't experience life if I cut it short.
  • Not everyone is meant to stay in my life.
  • It won't always be the same. Change can be amazing.
  • Sometimes burning bridges is the best thing you can do.
  • Don't let the bastards get ya down.
  • The only thing certain in life is that life is uncertain.
  • Be fully present.
  • Feel with your heart.
  • Engage the next moment without agenda.
  • Don't repress thoughts, but also don't chase them away. Accept them and then let go.
  • Start each day with a clean slate. Yesterday is no more, and today you are a new person.
  • Emotions are a part of life. Embrace them, but don't cling to them.
  • Ask yourself, "is there anything I can do about my situation right now?" If the answer is no, then just let it be. Because all that you can do is worry and dwell, and that will cause anxiety.
  • If something is distressing ask yourself if there is anything you can do in that moment. If the only thing you can do is worry, then let it be for now and know you will eventually be able to tend to the problem.
  • It's okay to not be okay
  • Don't repress negative emotions. Accept them as they are.
  • Do you have an agenda? So does nature. Guess who's agenda wins?
  • Asking for help doesn't make you weak. In fact, it shows you are strong and brave enough to do what a lot of people won't or can't.
  • Sometimes the best thing you can do is radical acceptance.
  • Don't judge someone based on how far you've walked with them. Chances are they have been traveling much longer before they met you.
  • "The world ain't gonna change for me."
  • Lonely and alone are two different things.
  • Without the "negative" emotions we cannot appreciate the positive ones.
  • "Try not to get worried, try not to turn onto problems that upset you. Don't you know that everything's alright, yes everything's fine."
  • Time heals all wounds. Some wounds just take longer, it doesn't mean there's something wrong with you.
  • Radical acceptance, while hard, is sometimes necessary
  • No amount of regret can change the past and no amount of worry can predict the future. Live for today.
  • Sadness is necessary. Without sadness we would not know the joy of memories, or what coming out of the darkness feels like.
  • Learn to let go. The less you care, the happier you will be.
  • Don't have a life plan. Chances are that plan will change. Have life intentions, but know that those intentions could change, and it may not always be by choice.

  • Positive Living-Day 30

    • Went to the park and did yoga
    • Animal shelter day
    • Put my laundry away and picked up my apartment
    • Had a good therapy session
    • Walked downtown and had lunch at a cafe
    • Got the address for my pen pal
    • Was paid some very nice compliments by T
    • The skills I learn every day, the ones I practice, and the patience when I don't always remember
    • Therapy breakthroughs
    • The nice nap I had today
    • "Life's a journey not a destination."
    • Don't have a life plan. Chances are that plan will change. Have life intentions, but know that those intentions could change, and it may not always be by choice.
    And forget not that the earth delights
    to feel your bare feet and the winds long
    to play with your hair.
    -Kahlil Gibran

    Tuesday, May 6, 2014

    Positive Living-Day 29


    • Starting doing yoga. I decided that meditation is not for me, and I am not going to try to force it. I can't sit still for very long. However, with yoga I am able to move and get exercise and take part in mindfulness/breathing.
    • Took my hoop and computer to the park, put on music, and danced and hooped to my hearts content. I even had someone ask me if they could take pics (of course I said yes).
    • Talked to my Dad and told him everything I got going on
    • Was finally able to do laundry thanks to a friend
    • Held my own in a debate
    • Met a friend at a cafe this morning (she needed to borrow a book)
    • Signed up for
    • I was asked out by a friend, and while I had to decline, I was flattered
    • The nice weather (cause I was able to hoop outdoors!)
    • Desmond for loving me even though I put him through the horrid experience of clipping his nails
    • Learn to let go. The less you care, the happier you will be.
    Little by little, through patience
    and repeat effort, the mind will
    become stilled in the self.
    -Hindi Scripture

    Monday, May 5, 2014

    Positive Living-Day 28


    • Did a lot of podcast promotion. I'm really trying to make the show the best I can.
    • Had a very difficult conversation, but it ended up okay in the end.
    • Went food shopping.
    • Had a good conversation with my friend, Devan.
    • Was able to use DBT skills to distract myself from troubling thoughts
    • Caught up on shows.
    • All my podcast listeners
    • Food Stamps (very useful when you're unemployed and hungry)
    • I am clairvoyant. However, my clairvoyance is random. Thus, I need to stop trying to predict the future.
    Learning to live in the present moment is part of the path of joy-Sarah Ban Breathnach

    Sunday, May 4, 2014

    Positive Living-Day 27


    • I spent the day out of my apartment at Starbucks. I got a lot done including putting together my video from pride, writing my next podcast episode, and coming up with new ideas.
    • Had a low key, chill day. Just what was needed after a day around lots of people.
    • Caught up on episodes of shows I watch.
    • The ability to smile. Because sometimes a smile is all you need. Either your own or from someone else.
    • Comfy blankets
    • Kitten purrs
    • Sadness is necessary. Without sadness we would not know the joy of memories, or what coming out of the darkness feels like.
    Being is sufficient. Being is All. The cheerful, sunny 
    self you are missing will return, as it always does,
    but only being will bring it back
    -Alice Walker

    Positive Living-Day 26


    • I went to western MA for Northampton Pride. It's probably my favorite Pride event. I also love western MA, especially Noho. I always get choked up at Pride. Seeing so much diversity and love. Plus it's so much fun. I also got to see a bunch of people I don't see very often. I really miss living in western MA.
    • I spent the afternoon/evening with T. I really missed him and he missed me. We went to Red Lime Tea House and got bubble tea then went back to his place and hung out. There were cuddles it was nice.
    • All the people at Pride. All the love, tolerance, and diversity
    • NPR for keeping me awake on the drive home
    • I have to make some decisions soon. However, it doesn't mean I have to make them right away.

    It is only when we are aware of the earth 
    and of the earth as poetry that we truly live
    -Henry Beston

    Friday, May 2, 2014

    Positive Living-Day 25


    • After being worried about having to talk to Pete today about what happened last night (Cliff Notes: I had a mini meltdown because he couldn't see me) the talk ended up being okay. We're going to talk more on Monday about coming up with a plan for me. Basically what I told him was I want a good balance of doing well and having him in my life.
    • I had an observation at the job I interview for the other week. I thought it went really well. I'm hoping because they had me do it, it means I'm a step closer to getting the job. I'm trying to keep details under wraps until I actually am offered the position.
    • I set a time and day to talk with the person in charge of the Child and Adolescent Network at NAMI about volunteering. I also emailed a Child Advocacy center about volunteering for them as well.
    • Got the proof for Absorb and fixed some kinks. Hopefully the next proof I get will be perfect!
    • Took a walk downtown to get some lunch.
    • Volunteering. I wish I had thought of it as something to do a long time ago. I've always wanted to work with youth and I don't know why I never saw Volunteering as an avenue.
    • Kitty snuggles!
    • Sometimes all you need is a hug from your pet.
    Go not abroad for happiness.
    For see! it is a flower that blossoms by thy door.
    -Minot J. Savage

    Thursday, May 1, 2014

    Positive Living-Day 24


    • Participated in my first Taco Tour. Manchester, NH does it every year, and it was pretty fun. Six taco (some dessert) and a lot of walking. Even saw some people I knew.
    • Did a bunch of promotion for my various pages
    • Spent some time writing at Starbucks
    • Got an email about meeting with someone to discuss how I can be involved in the Child and Adolescent Network at NAMI
    • All the people who are helping to fight mental illness stigma
    • All the people who understand
    • No amount of regret can change the past and no amount of worry can predict the future. Live for today.
    Look at your feet.
    You are standing in the sky.
    When we think of the sky,
    we tend to look up, but the sky
    actually begins at the earth...
    We breathe it deep within us.
    -Diane Ackerman