Wednesday, February 18, 2009


i can't sleep. money worries create great fears. as does noise of dog and not having any way to do anything for him though he seems to have stopped. i tried just petting him. he's back on prednisone. the current vet (not his regular one) has not called me back proably is sick of me. so am i. i feel fearful of a lot of things. in one day a lot of scary possibilities happened. maybe the real fears are all in my head and its not that bad. i cant say more. i just wish practical aspects of life were in my range of abilities. why am i so unable to deal with real things? is it a gift to be able to deal with things that are not on this reality plane. i feel for other people with mental illness who are totally unable to care for themselves or anyone and live in residences and shelters. life is not made for sensitive dreamers. being good at making things that are not useful is a difficult gift to have -- it does not help you provide for anyoen and makes me a dependent. i have never been able to support myself by myself. i assume my other qualities have to make up for this but maybe not. sometimes i berate myself a ton for it. it's hard to not know how to be the way everyone else is but i cant seem to do it. at least i am taking carea of the baby most of the time but then we pay a nanny so i can work and it costs more.
there are more messes but i dont know. i maybe need to stop therapy as i cant afford it even with insurance. whatever. i need to sleep. is anyone out there at all who feels this way or reads my words?????

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Sunday, February 15, 2009


elvis the scnoodle:
elvis is old and getting older.
elvis is 80 years old (according to his size in human years)
elvis is in his 17th dog year, ie. he is 16.5, had his half bday some time around end of jan.
elvis is elvis is elvis.
elvis is much loved by all of us.
elvis is called "dodo" by lola and very very very loved by her.
elvis gets love medecine, it helps him most.
elvis takes a lot of meds daily like me, but for different issues.
elvis takes soloxine for hypothyroid.
elvis takes actigol for gallbladder.
elvis just took an antibiotic klavamox, for two weeks.
elvis takes tylan powder in his food to help digestion and colitis.
elvis now takes an appetite increaser, i forgot the name.
elvis also takes codeine sulfate once in a while, usually at night.
elvis likes to pace around the house.
elvis hates baths and does not get them much as he has a bad back and neck.
elvis takes prednisone when his disc (intervertebral disc disease) flares up.
elvis trots and even runs at the beginning of his walks.
elvis drinks a lot of water.
elvis eats chicken baby food.
elvis loves whole foods rotisserie chicken.
elvis has a growth on his right front leg, which cannot be removed as it is coming out of the bone or too close to the bone, only noticed about two weeks ago by us humans.
elvis is stoic, brave, still manly, handsome and feisty when he feels the need.
elvis peed on denzel's carpet this morning in denzel's office area.
elvis had a seizure last week and i worried that he has a brain tumor.
elvis has a great vet who is wonderful and talks to me on the phone to answer questions, does not mind when i start crying.
elvis will not get an MRI, CAT scan (what dog would submit to a CAT scan, ha ha), or biopsy or surgery on his "tumor" as the seizure and his age indicate that these things could kill him and he seems to be doing well, considering what is going on.
elvis gets better when i get less anxious about his health and when he is not taken to the vet.
elvis will live quite a lot longer due to loving care and hopefully an increase in food intake, helped by that appetite pill and rotisserie chicken...
elvis just got a head rub.
elvis still competes with denzel.
elvis is alpha dog extraordinaire!

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the episode

ok. the new episode of february started after my bday, on a thursday, evening, after my therapy session with my therapist i noticed that i was manic. for me it's an immediate awareness of my actual brain chemistry neurons or whatever shifting and i feel it biologically the way people report feeling anxiety in a physical way only it's nothing like anxiety. i had the visuals where everything is seen in a new clarity,the thoughts and connections and other stuff but i was able to be aware and use my way of kind of witnessing my brain like in mindfulness meditation.

this time i was very able, even more together and quicker than usual to get on to the job of managing the episode and mania. called my doc and told him and said i was going to up my abilify and take 200 seroquel (usually i take 150)mg. he left me a message saying i was right on and to increase abilify the next day and keep up the seroquel and that it was great that i noticed so quickly. the other ingredient was talking to denzel right away.

the upside was that i enjoyed reading this book called dogtrain to lola in a manic sort of way that was good -- i felt really present and was really into the book and holding her and relating with her. i know my therapist that night thought i was very related and grounded because i check in with him as i have a tendnency to go off and talk a lot to avoid emotions.

so that's been going on since last thursday about 10 days or so, and as you can see, the episode is not over but under control. the fact that it is 9am in nyc and i'm writing a lot of posts is soooo much better than if it was 2am, or 5am, you get the point. i've already had a night's sleep.

as to the stressors causing the episode, i'll save for another post. a lot of stress about elvis' aging, relationships, holidays etc. that built up in my body. i usually have manic episodes a couple of weeks or month after the big stresses have subsided a bit, but the elvis stress continues. to be continued.

the image i had for a cartoon was to draw abilify and personify it and have me talking to it. i'll try it out soon and get my scanner hooked up to this computer...

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my new year's resolutions

these posts are all amplifications (amplify is another word related to abilify) of the first post of the day...

anyway i will keep spelling abilify my way, woops that is the correct spelling, how grandiose of me.

i forgot to confess that i remember seeing a silly commercial about bipolar disorder with a long haired woman walking on the beach that i think was an abilify commercial. i remember liking her long curly hair and she reminded me of a few people i knew as acquaintances, the kind of women i think of in this idealized way: earthy, smart, down to earth, healthy etc. funny that they put that type in the role of manic depressive.

here are my revised new year's resolutions:
three words first:
balance, compassion, abundance

those might be enough and these ones to follow probably are too self critical:
i tried to imagine that this year i will be careful with the words that come out of my mouth (including words i write like in here of course) with the intention of being more present, relating to others better, and not talking too much or getting into my manic talking that happens when i'm not manic but anxious and uncomfortable actually. it also was primarily meant to help me with all my relationships but especially my family, even with elvis. i really believe that words/speech is action and right action is hard to get to or at least well intentioned compassionate action. a friend once told me " there are no bad thoughts, only bad actions". it was one of the most helpful ideas esp. for mixed episodes when i have terrible thoughts in my head, i mean stuff i would not even talk about in this blog...
so more careful words in speech, but allowing myself any thoughts i want or have or cannot control with less judgment of my thoughts and more focus on working on my speech. i often talk like i'm thinking out loud or say things i do not mean. at same time i stay quite private. it's all a way (manic defense the shrinks call it) to keep people a safe distance from me...

next one is not self critical, what i'm working on in therapy, summed up in two words: self acceptance

abilify, abilify, abilify say it three times and tap your shoes together!

ok so i'm still manic,but managing it. got sleep last night, about 6 hours or maybe 5.5. will have to take a nap later.

the mania is now under control and not further triggered by abilify as i'm on a higher dose. the longer you take it and higher d0oses it starts to do its threepart performance: mood stabilizer, helping lower depression, and antipsychotic! seroquel is supposed to do that too but it has a lot of long term effects that could happen later, like diabetes, etc.

so now i take wellbutrin 300mg, abilify now up to 10mg and seroquel now up to 200 mg. (with klonopin when needed).

i fully admit that my weird desire to start abilify (the idea of not taking depakote again was longstanding and the idea to maybe replace it was not weird but good sense care taking that seroquel is not enough and i did not want to have to stay on high doses of seroquel. with depakote my seroquel dose was 75mg before i went off to get pregnant.)well the wierd part of it, about 20% as to the 80% that i think was well founded and supported by my doc:
1. i liked the name for the first time i really liked a drug's name. i have to probably take these drugs for the rest of my life, so cut me some slack that i focus on the names. any bipolar knows when you get manic words MEAN more than when you're not. associations to the name: ability, abilify like liquify or other words like that , the "ify" i think means, to make, so to make more able, then other associations: ability, amplify, i think i'm spelling the drug's name wrong. i think it's "abilifi" anyway if i go more towards fantasy with the associations: able to fly, able to lift out of depression and mania, able lift...
2. i had an intuition that it would give me a hypomanic lift, just from knowing that unlike the other mood stabilizers it is not going to knock me out of slug me into sluggishness...
3. i even like the blue color, it's a really nice blue, not like the color of wellbutrin which i take the generic of anyway and wellbutrin smells bad. it's a tiny pill shaped like a rectangle but rounded at the edges. the blue is sort of cerulean blue, nice and bright for a bright new day of normality, not that i ever feel normal.

ok enough of that. i'm exagerating for effect and i know this post seems manic but it's partly due to my lack of posting and wanting to catch up and missing writing and enjoying it. i like words and playing with them when i'm not in an episode too.

next post: the episode and where i'm at with it...

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new year's resolutions, new news and new episode!

hello all, so much for blogging more frequently. i've stopped using my mac almost completely as it's not hooked up to the internet and in a bad place for watching baby girl at same time. i think i'll start calling her lola just so she has a name here but it's not her real name. i don't want to regret writing about her in this context and as my name in here is fake anyway, as is denzel's and elvis' hers needs to be too.

anyway i will try to hook up my scanner and start doing comix again. i really strayed from the whole point of my "notes from underground" which was to post comix frequently about my bipolar adventures, as practice for the graphic novel i've been blocked about doing for about 9 years now. i'm on page 26 or so. today i'm going to a fun party where i will find some great old comic books and get reinspired. my friend whose party it is, a great friend of denzel and an "uncle" (not biological but more of an uncle than her "real" ones) to lola, set aside a bunch of wonder woman and other related comics by and about women.

anyway i will try to figure out a way back to comix. i haven't come up with the right drawing of myself but i have been doing some drawings that i think will help get to it.

this post should probably be divided into several posts. january news was that i got very depressed and then started a new medication towards end of jan.
i had talked to the doc about changing to something more as the seroquel was not enough to manage my episodes or at least to prevent frequent severe ones. at beg. of jan. as you see from last posts i was kind of in a mixed state. the angry depression at end of january lasted only a few days. as soon as i started a low dose of abilify it went bye bye.
i know abilify can stimulate in low doses when it is helping your antidepressent work better. i think it did cause some hypomania...

anyway more about abilify. where have you been all my life? all those years of depakote, feeling sluggish and needing about 9 hours sleep a day at least, unable to wake up early etc etc. it did not affect my creativity though, so depakote takers out there, if it works for you, great! i also did not keep up with getting my blood checked and hate needles so abilify is great for that. no need for the blood levels i had to do for about 10 years of lithium followed by years of depakote.

more in next post.

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