Being bipolar feels a lot like an extended family of gerbils moved into to your head, set up a condo and are having a non-stop party. There are some days that I can stay reasonable focused on one task at a time, but those days are few and far between. Most days I have the attention span of a gnat. “Oh look at the sky, I’m hungry, I want to go see X movie…right now, squirrel, need to do laundry, where did I leave my collection of paint brushes? And where the hell is that painting I’ve been working on? I have too many shoes again, where is that book I was just reading? Oh, the deposit slip I was using as a book mark is dated March 2011, so I guess I wasn’t just reading after all. I guess I’ll start over and read it from the beginning.
Get it? There is never ending bedlam going on in my head along with a running commentary on what I “should” be doing, or even what I should “want” to do. It takes practice and fortitude to come to grips with the fact that something I was absolutely obsessed with last week holds not even the slightest bit of interest to me today. I may go back to being obsessed with it next week or never be interested again, there’s just no telling how it’s going to play out.
I can go from crocheting granny squares for a blanket that will be complete in about 2025 to planning the rest of my life on an Excel spreadsheet in the blink of an eye. The good thing about both of these activities is that they are both works in progress and can sit and wait, happily ignored, for me to come back to them when I get around to it.
Sometimes I worry that living basically in the lap of luxury is one cause of my lack of focus. There is nothing that I must do or else…have no water to drink, no food, no shelter, children to care for, etc. Mr. Husband makes a decent living and pays the bills. I can pretty much do exactly as I please any time of the day or night. I found myself being rather embarrassed lately when a friend asked me how much our electricity was every month and I had to admit that I didn’t know. Hubman takes care of all that and I never even see the bills. He talks to me about the family business and seems to value my advice, so I’m sort of an impromptu consultant, but that is the extent of my participation
God Lord, am I living in my own private funny farm? That’s a scary thought. Will I end up sitting around all day weaving baskets and gluing macaroni to paper plates? Am I turning into some kind of sheltered old biddy who doesn’t even know how to gas up her own car? It’s something to think about.
My sweetie pie of a girlfriend arranged an evening at the Painting With a Twist shop as belated birthday present. I never heard of it before she suggested it. I’m so glad she did. We had soooo much fun.
Painting With a Twist is a venue that offers you an evening of guided painting. They provide the canvas, paint brushes, paint, etc. and you bring wine and cheese or whatever snicky snacks you prefer. The session is arranged by going online to their website and choosing a picture. Then you sign up for the date that instructions for the picture if offered.
The instructor takes about 15 people through a 2 hour guided tour of how to paint a picture. There are times when you take a break to let your painting dry a little between layers, so we all wandered around with our wine comparing paintings and talking with the other people in the shop.
I’ve dabbled in painting but never had any formal training, so I learned a lot just from that one sitting. I’m hooked and fully intend to make a habit of doing this. We had a blast.
North Texas had an unusually mild spring this year so far. Mother Nature noticed the oversight and decided to make up for lost time last night.
6 of us went out to a fawncy restaurant to celebrate my Mother-in-law’s 80th birthday. During the meal I could see a reflection of trees whipping around in a mirror across the room. The trees were not just blowing in one direction; they were whipping around like they were in a washing machine. That is never a good sign.
I started to get antsy but kept telling myself that it was just because I was with the in-laws. I even ordered a second gin & tonic which is unusual for me when dining with them. A little after 8:00 pm we stood outside saying our goodbyes. The wind came up and we were all standing there with our hair peaking up on top of our head like we were in a wind tunnel.
For the ride home we watched an impressive light show to the south, all kinds of spectacular but unusual strikes. Some that branched out horizontally across the sky. Others hit the ground and the rays were so wide it looked fake. Someone was photo shopping Mother Nature.
At home I was in a semi undressed state and Mr. Husband was without apparel when he came running out of the bedroom yelling “the sirens are going off.” I was in a sort of stupor and asked “what sirens?” He answered “the tornado sirens,” for once not rolling his eyes and giving me that “Well duh” look he excels in. I don’t know how he always hears them and I don’t. Must have been that 20 years of working in bars with music loud enough to rattle the fillings out of your teeth.
Of course a sort controlled pandemonium ensued. Where are the pets? Are they inside? Mr. Husband put some clothes on. He tends to respond to panic by dressing. I don’t blame him. If a tornado hits I don’t want to end up getting fished out of the rubble in my birthday suit. I grabbed my 2 most valuable possessions – my purse and laptop and put them in a handy place in case I had to grab them and take shelter.
Fortunately for us, but not so fortunate for those in the path of the tornado, it touched down south of Dallas in the Granbury area. Storm spotters said the tornado became huge with a mile wide funnel on the ground at one point, a real wrath of God type scenario. Some people reported hail the size of grapefruits. A chunk of ice that big could come crashing right through your roof and land on your coffee table.
This morning the news is reporting 12 dead and hundreds injured. The response of people rushing to help those who have lost everything but the clothes on their back is heartwarming.
This kind of disaster always reminds me that life is short. Grab it where you can and don’t waste time sitting around bemoaning your lot in life because it could get a hell of a lot worse in the blink of an eye.
Instructions for the Leaving the House
- Keep your front door in a place where you can find it easily (e.g., at the front of the house or apartment). It’s like the food in the grocery store: if your front door is in a ubiquitous location, you’ll be more inclined to walk out of it.
- If the door is locked, unlock it. You can lock it again behind you if so inclined.
- Turn the doorknob. Open door.
- Close door behind you if so inclined.
- Congratulations, you’ve left the house.
Instructions courtesy of Hilary Smith’s book, “Welcome to the Jungle: Everything you ever wanted to know about bipolar but were too freaked out to ask.”
For some reason these instructions stuck me as so hilariously funny that I almost lost control of my bladder. I read them to Mr. Husband and he just didn’t get it. I guess it’s only funny if you’re on the inside and know how difficult leaving the house can be.
Unless you have personally been in a frame of mind where even finding the front door, let alone passing through it, is an almost insurmountable task, it’s just downright silly. I’ll leave the problem of deciding to exit by the front door or the back door for another day. If you suffer from bipolar maybe your one of the lucky ones who, if the back door only leads to a locked back yard or dead-end alley, your decision of which door to use is moot. You must use the front door if you intention is to completely depart your place of residence.
Having a sense of humor is mandatory. If you take yourself too seriously the consequences range anywhere from unpleasant to disastrous. I recently developed a fear of my toothbrush. Seriously! Here is this nasty pointy object that has already been in your germy mouth, and god only knows when you last replaced it. It’s supposed to be replaced every 3 months, but who remembers that? And now you’re supposed to load this thing up with slimy sugary toothpaste and put it back in you mouth. Then scrub it around – carefully – not to hard not to soft, but just right. I wonder when Goldey Locks took up residence in my mouth? If you scrub too vigorously you might lose control of the damned thing and jam it up you nose. I know because I’ve done this. It hurts. Don’t try this at home.
Watching commercials about tooth brushing is the stuff of nightmares! Now these pseudo paid Actor/Dentists are telling us that if we are not careful, we’ll scrub all the enamel off our teeth and never get it back. That is enough to make me want to hide in the broom closet. This also leads to the need to go the special department of hell – the dentist’s office. The screech of drills, the weird sucking sounds, sharp objects just laying there all shiny, just waiting for someone to jab them in your gums and up into your brain. Then the hygienist tells you that your gum “pockets” are getting bigger or are the same. Well yeah!?! I probably have them because you assault me with instruments of torture every time I grace you with my presence. So there, I’m calling the police!
And so it goes. I think it’s time to add new toothbrushes to my shopping list. Such a simple and elegant solution. Why didn’t I think of it before?