Saturday, November 30, 2013

Stop and smell the roses or take a deep breath

Today was a half and half day for me. I was in a lot of pain, but my husband had off and I love to spend time with him. His ring tone on my phone is the "Rocky" theme because he is my hero. So after him and I did a little shop local Saturday, we came home, where as I took a nap and he went to run some errands. He was home from his errands when I woke up. With Christmas right around the corner, I must have looked at every ad possible to look at the deals. With  " Cyber Monday" coming up I also wanted to check out the deals on-line. I do mostly everything from home anyway. I would give me 80/20 ratio with 80 being at home. So I get my computer booted up, ready to see what goodies I can find and a headline just shocked me. I read that the actor Paul Walker died in a fiery car crash. It floored me. It was not because I'm a giant fan of his, but he was only 40, he left behind a 15 year child. I'm sure when he got in the car he didn't even think about what would happen awhile later.

That is why I am always saying you must show and give the love before it's too late. When the other person is unfortunate, they don't have guilt, but those left behind can and do. Just like anything in life that you want, spreading your love to those you love takes time and effort, but what if you don't take that time or effort. I was sick to my stomach for years. I was talking to an ex co-worker and we talked about how bad my stomach felt all the time. And I tried everything. I would guzzle the Aloe Vera, eat yogurt, follow things that my dad would tell me to do, but nothing ever worked. So when I started throwing up in 2007, it wasn't too shocking at first because of my previous stomach problems or like I've said before I thought I caught a bug. By me talking to old friends I forgot about all the problems I had with my stomach in my 20's. I had lost my gall bladder at the age of 25 and even then they thought they might have to take a piece of my stomach, but before the surgery they had me take this medicine for a month and then do the scope down my throat again. The medicine worked, so all they took was my gall bladder, but even though it is an easy surgery, it made me feel pretty bad.
So to come full circle because I've been told I can be confusing ( I say try reading David Wallace Foster, then get back to me) I just want to show that the day in May of 2011 was not seen. Yes I was throwing up, but never did we think it would almost kill me.

With the holidays upon us let us all try to love people for who they are, not who you want or expect them to be. You never know when the clock will stop on anyone. I fought through a 5% survival and lived to tell. My only hope and wish is that people take care of their families as well as friends. Like the James Taylor song goes " Shower the people you love with love" Put that on the top of your to do list or on the dry erase board. Where ever you leave notes for you and others. You just never know. And for one thing because I do live with such a strange illness, that is not only chronic, but it could turn on me like a rabid dog, I try not to allow, anger, or anything negative survive near me, I need love and kindness and I will gladly do the same. I may feel awful, but I'll get up, brush my few remaining teeth, put make-up on, for no other reason then it makes me feel like I am alive. And there are days where it is tough to smile and be positive. Where I wanted to run outside and scream up to heaven, giving the finger and cursing God out, but that really isn't productive, besides I think God would chuckle at the skinny, toothless human. Those are the days I re-read the book of Job.

So as I sign off on this beautiful, crisp Autumn evening. If you only can remember 1 thing from this blog. Give and show your love to those as much as you can. Nobody has a clock.

God Bless

Friday, November 15, 2013

Having a crisis of who I am?

Today for some reason. The date of November 13 in the year of 2013, I am having an image crisis. Now I have read enough self help books and books about having a mental illness that image problems arise for us with  so called "mental health" problems. I turned 44 in August and I am beginning to double think the label. I grew up in nice houses, weekend at the New Jersey Shore. Dinner on the table by 5:30pm, grace said, normal talking between my father and I about religion and history because we had that in common, but beneath those Norman Rockwell moments, their lurked a family secret that even us siblings, as adults has caused a rift. No one else in my family might see it, but I do. You know why? It's the questions and the quiet insinuations of irresponsiblitty. And I have only myself to blame. I thought when I got diagnosed as Bipolar, I thought, if I talked about it with my family and tried to make them understand that it would help, but I feel like it back fired. I thought all the times I got out of control and over dosed, my family would try to understand. But nothing ever worked. It was just better swept under the rug, but because I have been so open, I am now crazy and no matter what I do I have some agenda. And that is what was on my mind today;my agenda.

I have a serious illness besides dealing with my bipolar. I lost my stomach, when the base of my esphogus burst and in turn killed my stomach. I am now fighting an infection of my mouth, but I'm not sure when I'll be feeling better. I was put on an antibiotic the End of October, but on Friday November 8th or early Saturday 9th at 3am, I had my husband take me to the ER with a temp of 101.9. So now I'm dealing with another killer illness ( If you don't think mental illness is a killer, watch the news, read a paper, pay attention!) So my thought was ok, I survived my father, my siblings and I are not as close as I would like, but I can only do so much. If I'm to get the blame so be it. I don't know what I did, so I can't attone for hurt.

What I am left with who am I? What makes me "me" I don't even recognize me. I feel my sense of humor and the part of me that was part hard-ass/part teddy bear is MIA. Now I am just here. My dream of being a writer seems to have gone and it makes me sad. From the moment I picked up my crayons and made a story out of the pictures I drew, there was a purpose for my being here in my head. Now that my illnesses seem to have taken over my life and time, that my creative garden in my head is full of dead flowers, overgrown weeds, the perfect white fence I built to keep my ideas in, is all run down. My creative mind has become a ghost town. I have a life time of stories that I could write about my life. Full length novels, but I just am so drained that I don't look at it like it would be cathartic.

I feel totally stripped, I have all the memories and the ones I don't have can be filled in. My Mom had 6 kids and all 6 of us would have different stories. I ruined a siblings life because I did something stupid at 14 because I was tired of being my fathers punching bag. But what I did, eclipsed the reason why and then I turned around and said I made it up because I was protecting my Mother for my younger siblings, while she should have been the one to protect us.

So this blog really doesn't have much to do with my illness and how I am coping with it. This blog is more a practice in what they call "free writing" in writing class.
So thank you for reading my rants, please leave a message, so I know that some one has read it. You put the comment where it says " no comment", if you hit that button you can leave a comment
Have a Fantastic weekend.

#mental health
#GI Disorders
# soul searching

Friday, November 8, 2013

An Infection

Today on my blog, I'm going to talk about an illness that I am dealing with today and have been for almost a month. With my illness, I already have a compromised immune system ,so catching a virus or infection can hit me harder then a person who is a picture of health. My infection started right before Halloween. I was just released from the hospital a few days prior and my family was having one of our family gatherings. I was not feeling well, but I really wanted to see my family. When you wake up, a few months later then you remember and learn that you were not given a whole lot of chance to survive (I was given 5% the first two weeks) You look at the world with different eyes. The people you love take a front row seat to anything. I used to believe that I had no choice on how I was treated, but I learned that is a myth. Not to say that I don't have my days were I go back to were I was before. That I thought people didn't like me or I made them mad, but with my prayers to the Lord for the strength to not let negative thoughts rule me, those negative days are few and far between. I just need to learn patience because I had the life altering experience, not them, so to them life doesn't take on the be with those that you love as much as you can because one day they will be gone. When I was rushed to the hospital on that day in May of 2011, none of siblings were expecting to get the phone call they got.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

So now that I did survive this long, I have come to love my family and not just love them, but not take them for granted. But now I am very sick again. The day I spent with my family, I was running a low grade fever and swollen glands. It turned out that I had tonsilites and strep. I have been on an antibiotic for close to 2 weeks, but when I woke up this morning, my husband said I didn't look very good. I took my tempature and it was 101.4. When I checked my tempature a few hours later it had jumped to 101.6, plus I am feeling, weak, dizzy, unsteady and this may sound strange but I also have pain in my digestive system.

To put weight on they put me on a formuls called TPN and one of the risks with TPN is infection so I called my doctor and left her a message about my symtoms. I have not heard from her yet, so I'm just in the midst of the waiting game. So I leave you with post that doesn't really talk about my illness that has changed my life, but talking about this infection is a part of the illness that I must acknowledge also because an infection can be dangerous for me.

God Bless and Have a great Weekend

Saturday, November 2, 2013

A short story about the Genesis of Marianne

I can't believe that it is one month away from 2014. I turned 44 this past August. When I was a young girl I never dreamed at 44 I would have dealt with all that has been thrown my way since I turned 30.

When I left my little hometown of Bristol, PA in July of 1997, I was on the trip of a lifetime. I was going to a place where I could go to college and find a haven to write. Writing has been a passion of mine since I could write. I would write stories about anything, even if it was something inconsequenchel to others, I would take it and bring it to life. I once wrote a story about a leaf that fell off a tree and all the things "he" did while being blown around. But life had a different plan for me and I am still trying to figure out what it is.

I was diagnosed with manic depression at the age of 23. I suffered with bouts of depression through my teens, but my home life was tough and I never was really pushed towards anything. My writing wasn't shared with any kind of encouragement. Every so often my Mom would talk about a story I wrote that I got an A on, but I feel like I was a giant disappointment to my parents and to others in my family. Feeling like you failed people is a really hard way to get where you think would make you happy because that fear of failure just keeps you frozen. They did not understand the illness that I had to deal with and it seems that no one did. I worked while dealing with my illness by not taking meds, but by not taking proper care of my manic depression it left me open to have terrible bouts of depression or mania that would cause me to miss work.When I left PA I came to California and got a job working with juvenile deliquents, I met new people through church and was writing. I felt so good. Totally broke, but good. I dated around and then met someone I fell head over heels for. After we had been together a few years we got engaged. I thought I would spend all my life with him until he came to my job and broke off our engagement for a nonsense, excuse of a reason. I was working full time and going to school where I just finished the semester with a 4.0. When that engagement was broken off, I felt like the mirror of success that I saw when I looked into cracked into a million pieces, blowing into my face and hair. That break-up caused my plateau of my manic depression to come roaring back.

Then around the age of 31, I went back east for Christmas and it was a really nice Christmas, except for New Year's. I went to visit an old schoolmate at his parents for a New Year's party. My friend asked me to get him something from his house, which was right across the street. So I was walking up to his house and it had snowed the day before, so the snow would melt and then turn to ice at night. Well, I didn't see the black ice and I slipped and fell on the ice, knocking me unconscious. When I came to I had a nice big lump on the back of my head, but no blood, so I just ignored it. When I got back to my home in California, I started to have seizures. The seizures were a direct link from my fall on the black ice. So due to those 2 illnesses, my Doctor's deemed me disabled and I was no longer able to work. After awhile, not working really sucked, but it worked out for a couple of reasons. Since I didn't work, I was able to go back east and care for my Mom while she was sick with her terminal cancer and I have been able to help out other family members when needed, plus I was able to concentrate on my writing.( If I wasn't so ashamed of failing maybe I would have something finished and published)

Before the big "event" in May of 2011, I helped an old friend with a new business venture. While helping her, I felt better about myself and thought that I would start looking for a real job. But the universe had a different plan for me. I started getting sick to my stomach in the summer of 2007 and each year up to December of 2010, my bouts of vomiting became closer and closer together. When they started in 2007 I got sick for one day and maybe just one time every 2-3 months and by the end of December 2010 until May of 2011 I would get sick all the time. Because of my manic depression already being an object in the minds of my family, some family members thought I was doing this on purpose. Which is something a) I would never do. I hate to get sick to my stomach, so I wouldn't do it on purpose and b) I was in a good place, I was working in a bookstore, while looking into finishing up my degree in geriatric studies, so I could get out of the bad paying job cycle, so I had no reason to want to kill myself. Plus if anyone every looked into why and what suicide is, mostly for women it is a cry for help. For me, for the most part, when I did try, it was an accident because I couldn't sleep. December 26,2010 will forever be printed in my mind because on that day at 4 am was when I began to vomit almost everyday until my esophagus burst and killed my stomach on that fateful day in May

The hardest thing that I live with besides my physical pain is my emotional pain. Having a life altering illness is a lonely life. People probably think that I have people with me, but I'm alone most of the time, unless I'm in a skilled care facility and this may sound strange, but at times I like being there because I'm not alone. So I sign off on this cloudy November day in California. God Bless and keep close to those you love.