Thursday, July 24, 2008

After discovering the internet I decided that I would not ever deliberately write anything I would be ashamed of having my grandchildren finding, so I gave up pseudonyms and just use my own name. Rand McNatt. Sometimes just Rand. So when someone googles my name they will find my positive contributions to society, I hope.

"Hey, you guys want to play ball"?"
"Naw.", "No way, Dude!"
"Go find some more nude pictures of my Grandma on the internet?"

Real anonymity on the 'net is pretty much illusory, anyway. On another board I used to frequent (UFO's - I don't believe, but I have a complicated theory about CIA conspiracies) some joker tried to pass off a faked flying saucer video. Within 20 minutes the board members had determined that his father helped him with the conspiracy, that he was peeping the neighbors, that he thought he was a musician but wrote really bad hip-hop, that he still lived with his parents, and located his (parents') address and phone number and an aerial photo of the house.

"Rand" came from "Randal", but when your name is "Randal" most people call you "Randy", which I never really liked except that it has a different connotation in England.

And I do realize that "Randal" can be hard to understand and pronounce for some people. I used to get calls for "Wendel Macinaugh" all the time.

When my daughter was born, she became "Randi" and things got somewhat confusing around our house. My best friend used to call me "Rand" (and, oddly enough, I called him "Rand", too, because his name is "Randall", but he ended up with my wife - similar taste in women, no doubt - so he's not my best friend anymore, but anyway,) and so did my parents, so I changed my name to "Rand" except on government paperwork. And just to keep things confused, I call my daughter "Rand". She calls me "OhWhatever".

And you thought it had to do with money ;)

(Unfortunately, I'm only worth about $0.13 USD today. Yes, I have it bookmarked.)

Saturday, July 19, 2008

I was really proud of myself today: washed all the dishes (dishwasher is on the fritz) and my laundry, and helped take care of both babies all day. Also cleaned up the dining room, at least part-way.

But I feel guilty, too. Mary got up early, while I was sleeping, and started cleaning up the backyard, hauling away the remains of the old treehouse; she was back at it again in the evening, and I didn't help her a bit (except for killing a Black Widow spider she came across on a piece of timber). I still feel fatigued every waking moment.

So now I'm here, eating a bagel at 1:30 AM because I can't get to sleep. I was edgy all day, doped-up feeling, and again my face feels funny. I had a nice cry about midnight. The lithium shakes are back, too.

Well, maybe tomorrow will be better.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Goddamn It

So much for fucking stability. I woke up today to feelings of depression AND mania. It was so bad I had a hard time holding my grandson again: the feelings were just too strong and I had some really bad thoughts of death, dying, and how the survivors could possibly cope with the changes wrought. God it feels bad. I yelled at my son, I barked at my wife. I demolished a unopened box of saltine crackers; at least I'm choosing less expensive targets these days. I'm so nervous my hands have been shaking. Not the lithium quiver, but real suppressed-rage shaking. I want to get up and work around the house but at the moment I don't dare. The ideas won't stop demanding attention, and I want to draw or paint today, but again, I don't know how I'd react if the artwork didn't go as planned or if my hands refused to cooperate with my imagination - scratch that, I know exactly how I'd react, and it wouldn't be pretty. It's time for more lithium, maybe the boiling will quell for a while. I don't think my family really understands how painful this is; they just stand out of the way until Daddy is out of his Incredible Hulk phase. But nowadays the Hulk is usually crying while throwing the furniture around.


I took a break (from the computer) and went to do the dishes and wash the baby stuff. What a mistake. I'm trying to wash up from supper and suddenly everybody else decides it's time to wash one of the babies. Dammit. I was going to make juice, I was going to make Kool-Aid, i was going to make limeade (homemade, yum!) but got shoved out of the way and now the dishes are drying out and getting crusty and I'm extremely thirsty (lithium, y'know) and need something to drink and I didn't really want more water but there is nothing liquid in the 'fridge except milk and lemon-lime soda (see above) and I'd have to go to the bathroom to get a glass of water anyway but someone is in THERE so I went to wash the baby stuff and my son got mad at ME because someone got mad at HIM and I lost it and told him to gimme the dammed bibs and get the fuck out of the laundry room NOW and I went back and got the 2-liter soda and the dammed thing EXPLODED as soon as I got it out of the 'fridge (never had that happen before!) and right now I'm shaking and so wound up I'm afraid I'll explode myself so I retreated back to the dark coolness of the computer room.

Hi, so how was your evening?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Stable Hand

I just noticed it's been 5 days since the last post. That's mostly because I am becoming slowly more stable every day. Without dehydration in the mix, the medications seem to be doing a pretty fair job of handling my depression and mania.

Is this right, though? Is it possible Doc hit the right combination of drugs this fast? I read blogs and journals and forum posts of other afflicted souls and shiver in empathy with their tales of months, years, even decades of trail and error - mostly error - in getting their "meds" correct, when and if they ever get the chemicals to balance out.

So am I not as sick as I thought? I feel like a bipolar slacker at times. I mean, I've had the mania, felt the euphoria, stayed up for days on end and driven from NC to Texas via Pensacola, talked to God (and more importantly, He talked back) , raced a Porsche through the Tennessee mountains (in a Honda Civic - and won), heard the voices and saw the halos; and on the on other end I had the all-day crying jags, planned (but never attempted) suicide, and spent the week in my pajamas. I guess I'm either very lucky to have stayed out of jail and/or hospital, or very good at coping with the symptoms of manic-depression all these years. Or both.

In any case, the sexual side-effects, which I never really discussed, have abated, I'm sleeping well (too well, up to 12 hours per day - I must still be depressed underneath the anti-depressant) , and the "crazy-legs" and restlessness from the Pristiq are at least tolerable, if not exactly comfortable. With Pristiq I'm not floating in a marshmallow reality as much as with Lexipro, although my pillows still feel quite cushy and Mary's skin is sooooo nice.

Oddly, the left-right disassociation is still here, and the left-brain/right-side is still getting the messages a few milliseconds faster than the right-brain/left-side

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Sleigh Ride

Day-before-day-before yesterday was the appointment with Doc. He agreed that I was undoubtedly dehydrated and therefore kinda weirded-out for a few days. We're keeping the medications where they are for another month, to see how things go, except for one thing.

My blood pressure is now too low.

He thinks I may still be dehydrated, so he's switching me to a different formulation of Benicar to help with that little problem.

I've been down all week. Yesterday I finally got out of my PJs around 10 PM; had a half a hamburger for dinner; didn't go with the family to see fireworks and take in baseball game. Here's hoping things will be better today.


I'm spaced out right now, floating around the house, dizzy and unstable. Hands are shaking a bit more than before. I have no appetite, but managed to eat a bowl of pseudo Rice Crispies earlier, then took a three-hour nap. I'm trying to drink enough water and Gatorade to stay ahead of "increased urination", but it's not easy. Kool-Aid tastes funny, as do fruit juices. Whenever I stop and let my gaze relax, everything seems to be spinning slowly clockwise.

Mary wants to go shopping, and I'd like to go with her, but I'm not sure I can go right now. Maybe later.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Over Hill. over Dale

Day before yesterday was a down day: severely, painfully down. I was crying on-and-off most of the day, and, for the first time ever I felt like things were my fault, that I was to blame for all the ugliness and hardship my family has been put through. That was a hateful feeling, scary, because even through the tears I recognized that weight of emotion as a symptom of major depression, a symptom I have never had until now. I'm thankful I'm on medication - I was drowsy most of the day and didn't have the ambition or strength to do anything about the feelings.

Yesterday I had to fly to Dallas for a court appearance, Probate Court, to begin finishing up Mom's affairs. Southwest Airlines let me down for the first time: we had a 1½ delay on a 45 minute flight. We - my sister, her husband and daughter - rushed to get to court on time, spent all of 10 minutes in the courtroom and 3 minutes in front of the Judge, waited an hour on some paperwork, then it was done. Kill some time in downtown Dallas and my sister's place, then home. The plane back was packed to capacity, said capacity including five very tired and unhappy toddlers who were arranged in a neat circle around my seat. Still, I managed a nap, drifting off with a smile, thinking how much training my own five children had given me in ignoring screaming brats.

For most of the day yesterday I feel I was mildly hypomanic, and so thoroughly enjoyed the trip, site seeing and visiting with my sister.

Today I am more manic, I think, or maybe it's mixed. Maybe I'm down. I can't really tell which way I'm going, but it's not toward normal. My face feels funny. I am trembling ever so slightly, especially my hands. I feel like I want to do things. I feel like there are things that need to get done. I feel like I'm the one who needs to do these things. And I feel like I'm frozen and disappointed in myself because I know that things are not going to get done. God DAMN I hate this feeling.

I want to start tomorrow with something easy and doable: I and any of the kids I can awaken will clean up the trash in the front yard: paper, bags, candy wrappers, sticks, stones, etc., to get ready to mow the weeds grass. Should only take 15 minutes and the weather early in the morning should be very pleasant.

We shall see.