500-Word Snatch

I just learned what this was about 3 weeks ago, knowing the word “snatch” as something naughty I say at work, not anything to do with writing. But, I learned it is a British term for doing something very quickly. It still means that in American English – “Snatch that chair for me!” – but it has been co-opted by the porn industry.

Anyway, the 500-Word Snatches I am attending are online, in Second Life. Each Sunday, I sit with a virtual group of people and when the buzzer sounds at 10 after the hour, we all begin writing… for 30 minutes… trying to get at least 500 words on paper.

snatch

I’ve already published a couple of my Snatch writings:

Halloween Candy

Día de los Muertos

And will be publishing the ones yet to be written here in the blog, with the Tag “500-Word Snatch.”

I encourage you to do these fun exercises! I am surprising myself at how fast I can get something decent out. It’s also good because it keeps me from editing while writing.

Let’s do Snatches together!

PencilSkator-232x232

Starting Over – AGAIN!

Erg.

I lost my NavelgazingWriter.com URL and so had to start over with this URL. Such is life.

start over

I’ve been writing a lot more lately, almost always about food, but I am finding myself writing about midwifery again, it mostly on the periphery, but it is still there.

I have several stories to add here and need to get photos to go with them, but I am excited about where this is going to go.

Instead of thinking about publishing into a book, which I think was really stifling me, I am just going to write here. For me. For my kids. To make people laugh and think: I have a story just like that to tell!

DO IT!

Let’s write together!

writer

When Suicide Seems the Right Choice

A woman being sent back to Chile instead of being let into the United States tried to kill herself on Friday at JFK airport in New York City. She was found and Narcan administered, saving her life. She is at a hospital in stable condition.

Airports

Today, folks from the countries that evil man listed, were detained at airports around the world, many sent back from whence they came. Families were separated, some people arbitrarily allowed into the United States while others sent away.

Thankfully, around the country, people came out in droves and protested at major airports.

Lawyers also came out, pro bono, to help folks get into the country, stationing themselves at all the major airports and working, sitting on floors, in fast food restaurants and wherever they could find to help those that needed it so badly. Goddess bless lawyers!

lawyers-lax
Immigration Lawyers at LAX.

Then the ACLU initiated the fight against the executive order and “a federal judge granted an emergency stay Saturday to bar deportation of people with valid visas who landed in the U.S., following chaos and detentions after President Donald Trump’s executive order related to immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries.”

Absorbing the Pain

Today is only Day 8 of that evil man’s reign in the US and I already feel immense despair. I do not watch the TV news or even look at video of the news on the computer. I get all my information from Facebook and Tumblr feeds, reading the articles posted there. I am not supposed to listen to the news… my psychiatrist and therapist have both forbidden it because of how it affects me.

As the day wore on, I felt more and more despondent, falling to a very low place about 10pm. I talked to my Muslim lover, each of us sharing our own sadnesses… and then feelings of hope at how things were playing out around the world as the hours passed.

david-kessler
artist, David Kessler

I’ve had some really horrid thoughts about that man in charge of our country today. I am not a violent person, do not visualize mean things happening to anyone, but out of nowhere, really ghastly thoughts manifested all day long. I tried not to judge my random thoughts, but just allowed them to come and go without holding onto them too desperately. (A Mindfulness skill.)

My Own Despair

What was disconcerting were my own feelings of not being connected to my body, my mind floating around without having much control over it. I wrote “Immigration Ban Horror” trying to get some of the pain out of my body, but the distress actually grew instead of diminished.

I’ve thrown up several times, wanting to purge the awful feelings inside.

When I was talking to my cub (my Muslim love), I confessed I have been having thoughts of such despair I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to make it through the night.

sadbath

My cublet was very loving and gentle with me, reminding me of all the reasons I must stay here on the earth (kids, grandkids, my mama, for him… and to write). Just sharing with him released enough of the pressure, the near-compulsion, that the urge has passed.

(And yes, I know enough to go to the hospital if it gets too bad again.)

What distresses me is I am not even Muslim, a refugee or someone who is being targeted with being kept out of the United States, yet my emotions have been so strong.

I can so relate to the woman from Chile who tried to kill herself on Friday; I understand her desperation intensely.

I need to figure out how to moderate these feelings or else just get off the computer altogether for the next 4 years.

Helplessness

I feel helpless to do anything. The only thing I can do is write and most of what I am writing is news already out there or my responses to the news. I don’t feel like I have anything new to offer, nothing of real substance, just my emotions as I react to it all.

writers1

My cub said my writing has joined the chorus of support for Muslims and disdain for the horrid man in charge, that my voice is important to the message. That was soothing.

Exhausted

Writing has drained me. I am going to go lay down and try and sleep. I have Hamilton on (it’s been on all night) and I’ll probably leave it on… I love it so much!

Hopefully tomorrow will be better.

thinking nasty thoughts about that evil person in DC that would make tomorrow better

“I Wrote My Way Out”

from the Broadway show Hamilton: an American Musical

I wrote my way out

When the world turned its back on me

I was up against the wall

I had no foundation

No friends and no family to catch my fall

Running on empty, there was nothing left in me but doubt

I picked up a pen

And I wrote my way out (I wrote my way out)

words

Writing has always been an important part of my life. Sometimes more than others, depending my my mental state or how many opiates I am taking. I have been writing since I was 8-years old. I am now 55 (almost 56!).

I have written out the pain 10,000 times (or more) and yet there seems an endless cesspool of shit to purge onto the paper. Why is that? It’s rather annoying.

I am in an empty place right now, Hamilton’s words resonating deeply. It is tempting to turn to others for refilling, but when I do, there is always a hole somewhere, their validation leaking out, leaving me empty again. It is up to me… the filling, topping off, maintaining and keeping it (me) level so there is no sloshing over the edges.

The truth is, no matter who is in my life, I am really on my own. I need to hold my own hand for comfort, hug myself when I am sad and wipe my own tears. I don’t know how many times I need to learn this lesson, but clearly, I have not learnt it yet.

So I write.

I write to lessen the pain in my heart, to lift the weight on my chest. I write while crying in order to let go of my worries and concerns. I write when I feel I have nothing left to say. I always seem to find more words…

…and I wrote my way out.

nautilus

Anxiety Attack? O, There You Are!

Last night I was talking to my cublet, we were ranting a lot about that Hitlerian President-Elect, sharing our thoughts, our fears… our terror… with each other and then I needed to write.

computerthink

Descending Distress

So I went to work on Stunned, Shocked & Saddened and right as I got to the end, I began to feel crappy, then worse, my heart started racing, my stomach was in knots, I began sweating like a piglaletta and finally I told my cub, “I feel like shit! I need to go lay down.”

Once I was on laying on my bed feeling horrid, I began breathing deep to try and lessen the distress.

Then I thought, “Oh, I recognize this. This is an Anxiety Attack.”

I situated myself on the bed, laying down, feeling my body’s frantic fight to keep control over my mind, but I strong-armed the panic so I could do my Mindfulness exercises.

I felt the sheets under my arms and legs… listened to the air conditioner’s humming… smelled the scent of cinnamon from the witch’s broom I have in the corner.

breathe

Working Through the Experience

When I could, I texted my cub that it was an Anxiety Attack so he wouldn’t worry. He then asked if I had meds for that.

My cub is under 30-years old and has zero experience with mental illness, so his frame of reference is me. On meds. Getting new meds, getting them adjusted, and making sure I take them properly. While he knows I do Mindfulness Meditation and that I use it at times of stress, he doesn’t know Anxiety would have been one of those times.

Later, when I could explain better, I shared that I grew up in a Pill-for-Every-Ailment kind of family, so I have always seen meds as a free-for-all. My mom, sister and I have all been addicted to pills of one kind or another… my sister dying of an overdose of pain meds, mainly the 4 Fentanyl patches she had on when they found her. I am now about 2.5 years clean from Opiates (Percocet & Norco). I then shared that while acknowledging my forever-need for Psych meds, I do try to minimize other meds where I can.

Anti-Anxiety meds (Benzodiazepines)  are one of those types of meds I would rather not be using. I tried them when I had the Agoraphobia and hated them; I was doped into a stupor. I was on a dozen other meds including the opiates, so probably to be expected, but still. So I made the choice to not use the Benzos, but Mindfulness and Mindfulness Meditation instead.

Back for Good?

zappy-heart

The picture above is so accurate, showing the electrical currents zapping the brain and heart, sending them surging into overdrive… often for no apparent reason. Mental ones that are short circuiting, sure, but often for nothing we can pinpoint.

I was confused why the Panic Attack even hit in the first place, but my cublet reminded me (lovingly and gently) that the (fucking) Election has brought out intense emotions and then I spent a lot of time writing the previous post. Then the Panic consumed me.

Now that I remember what they feel like, I am on alert (not HIGH alert, though) for when/if it comes a’callin’ again.

Of course, I hope I don’t have another, but if I do, I am ready…

…to breathe.

Election: Safeword!

I had a client, not on a call, gleefully tell me he went to see Trump speak tonight.

Now, this person has some kinks that would, to put it mildly, make Trump gag, so I was, to say the least, quite shocked.

But instead of questioning, “WHY, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, WHY?!?!”…

…I calmly suggested we leave politics out of our friendly chat.

“Unless,” I said smirking from this side of the computer, “We are going to sling some scat at the topic.”

It went over his head.

libertycrop

Bipolar Diary: Just Below the Surface

Monday, 10/24/16, 1:56am

I thought I should have a title for these Bipolar posts. I came up with Bipolar Diary. Original, I know. laughing

Not Having Fun

puzzlepieces

Today (10/23/16) has been a really difficult day. I went to bed at 5:00am, slept for 3 hours or so, then up for a few hours, then down again. And again. And again! I keep napping for 1-3 hours at a time. Where is this fatigue coming from? Am I depressed?

This happened a week or so ago, too. I don’t have the patience to go search and see how far back it was. I don’t have much patience for anything. If I hadn’t been in menopause for 8 (or whatever) years, I would think I was having PMS. I cannot keep a thought in my head, am so scattered. I am sure this post will be ghastly, but need to write anyway.

Visual Hallucinations

Most of the hallucinations have gone, but the visual ones are making me crazy.

eyes

How I was more tolerant of the slew of visual, auditory and tactile hallucinations than I am with just the visual is beyond me, but I think much of this sleep crap is because I am overwhelmed with the visions I keep seeing. Roaches, yes… some… but mostly like things are just moving. Sliding around. The covers shifting, the pillow edging over, the carpet rising.

It’s like I am on a tilt and everything is going to fall off the edge.

Frustrating is an understatement.

ADD

Also, I have very little attention span. I have tried to watch Grey’s Anatomy, a show my daughter recommended, but it is too much new information to retain so I end up watching Sex & the City or Friends again (on Amazon & Netflix), two shows I practically have memorized. (Monster’s Inc. is on as I am writing this; another movie I know by heart.)

monstersinc-gif
What I look like with tactile hallucinations. From Monsters, Inc.

It is difficult to work in this state. My mind flits from thought to thought and I keep talking over clients. I try so hard to pace my words, but they just tumble over each other.

And, as a few weeks ago, my fingers are fumbling with the keys on the keyboard… spelling homophones instead of the correct word (reed instead of read, meat instead of meet, etc.). Argh! I hate having to re-type the right word! (Write came out first. Fuck me running.)

This Is Progress?

bpmind

When I saw the Psych last week, he was happy the auditory hallucinations were gone and said I was on the right track. Today I had the first tactile sensation after several days without any; brief, but still there.

I hate the see-sawing of emotions. One day feeling great and doing well, the next (today) being total shit and missing a day of work. Isn’t there supposed to be balance sometime?

I don’t even know where to go from here, so I’ll just end.

heavy sigh

10/24/16, 2:29am