Haven’t written much because I really haven’t been up to it the last few days. Between seeing the family, my having major maintenance being done on my apartment, dealing with the hot weather, and now entering my traditionally tough time of year, I haven’t been motivated to do much of anything. I’m burned out already and summer has barely started. I’ve been having maintenance come and go out of my apartment for the last few weeks. And to tell you the truth, it’s thrown a monkey wrench in my routines. I’ll be so, so glad once everything is taken care of and I don’t have maintenance and management dropping in on my place at a moment’s notice. I have to be out of my apartment all day Monday. Still have no idea what I’m doing for the whole day. I really don’t want to go to my parents’ place. I don’t want to hang out in the part as it’s supposed to be yet another hot day. I really don’t have any close friends in my complex that I could just spend the day at. All my old friends in my hometown have moved out of state a long time ago. I really have no clue as to what I’m doing all day out of my apartment.
Since I’ve developed a fear of leaving my apartment, this is probably going to be tougher than it would normally be. I’m burned out. I’m tired of always having to jump to other’s schedules at a second’s notice. That’s why I don’t go anywhere for any length of time anymore. If I do I’ll miss some request from family, friends, management, maintenance, etc and then I’m in trouble with said people. I’m paranoid enough as is. I just want to be left alone.
Of course no one wants to hear my problems. My parents were busy with their grandkids the last entire week. I had to fake like I was in a good mood for my birthday bash. My friends won’t return my calls or messages on facebook. I don’t know what is wrong with everyone all at once. And I’m tired of trying to figure people out. After months of dealing with nonsense from pretty much everyone in my life, I’m about to crack. Too bad I couldn’t just break down and sob to express my real emotions. I think I’ve cried only twice in the last twenty years. I didn’t cry at any of the funerals I’ve ever been to. But, then, it’s not manly to have emotions besides anger and lust.
In short, I just want to be left alone for a very long time. I’m tired of dealing with stupid and rude people I can’t please. I don’t need therapy. I don’t need company. I don’t need a medication adjustment. I just need people to leave me alone if they are going to be stupid and rude.
I have my birthday coming up in a few days. My birthday doesn’t mean as much to me anymore as it did when I was in my youth and early adulthood. I’ve made my peace with the fact that I’m not going to get younger or stronger as I age. I accept that things on my body are going to start wearing out. I’ve even accepted that I may become forgetful and not have as rapid mental recall as I did in my younger years. But this mental illness has become easier to manage than it was even five years ago. Even my current problems aren’t overbearing like they were years ago. Now they are irritable occurences that I just deal with until they pass by. I really think my mental illness is easier to deal with now in my late 30s than it was when I was in the prime of my health.
I don’t worry about getting older. I actually welcome it. I’m not really that nostalgic about the past and I really don’t have that many regrets about my past. I avoided all the major mistakes and learned from the minor ones. I’m not tied down as much as many people I know. I know people from my classes in high school and college who have gone through divorces, stuck in dead end jobs, paying off massive debts, in unhappy marriages, have addiction problems, and generally not having a very good time in their thirties. My only true problem is I can stand to lose about 100 pounds. I’ve already lost at least 25 pounds since New Year’s. All I really did was give up fast food, give up most sugar, give up most bread, and drink only water and coffee. Even my chronic back pain is gone. I do occasionally allow myself thin crust pizza, but I go heavy on vegetable toppings when I do.
As cool as my college years were, in spite of the schizophrenia, in some ways my late 30s are even more amazing. I stay in contact with my college friends via facebook and instagram. I have all the music I spent a small fortune on in my teens and twenties for free on youtube and spotify. And I even listen to some of the newer material that comes out too, not just what I grew up with. When I was a teenager I promised myself that regardless of how my life or career turned out, I would never allow myself to become a bitter old man. That’s why I don’t complain about the “lousy kids” or pine for the “good old days.” I do have a few regrets, but the big one (not having much of a relationship with my brother), even that can be reversed once he and I start to put the effort into it. We may not talk much, but that isn’t because we hate each other. We just have totally different lives and day to day experiences.
I may not have dated many women, but I did have some roller coaster ride romances I don’t regret. I asked out all the women I had crushes on in my life, got turned down by most of them, but I’m not wondering ‘what if’ about the one I let get away. Just because I asked was a victory in some regards. I’m glad for the dates I had, even the really lousy ones. I don’t regret being stood up by women, or being rejected, or watching one woman I liked date one of my close friends. And I don’t regret being unmarried at this point in my life. I definately don’t regret not paying alimony or child support. If, at some point down the road, I do meet my forever instead of my usual until whenever types, I’ll consider it an added bonus. But I am not worried about being an old man and alone. By the time I get to be an old man, I may have a robotic assistant that does everything that a professional care giver would anyway. I’ve lived 38 years at this point and experienced some cool things. I can’t wait to see what the future holds.
I’m currently at my parents’ house for the next couple days. There was some maintenance work that needed to be done at my apartment. But as long as I have my computer and even average internet service, I can get everything I need done.
Been sleeping more than I would like again. Not sure what to make of that. I’ve also been more frustrated and short tempered and depressed than usual for the last couple weeks. Normally spring is my favorite time of year. So I’m not sure what’s going on. Still getting more active and being more careful about what I eat. Since I am at my parents’ house, I’ve been doing more socializing in person than my usual.
Being back in a small town for the first time in months, I had forgotten how quiet things could be. I had gotten used to hearing people in my hallways and knocking on doors for most of the day. I was also hearing ambulance and fire sirens a few times a day too as I lived on a busy street. And I forgot how dark it gets at night in rural areas. It’s almost eerily dark. Yet it was something I had taken for granted while growing up.
I plan on spending another couple days here. I really hadn’t had much peace and quiet in my life for the last few weeks. I’m ready for things to settle down again. Dare I say, I actually miss winter now. I don’t miss the cold and snow, but I do miss the quiet days and down time. I usually do pretty good writing in the winter months.
My back still flares up from time to time. The worst part is that I can’t stand for more than ten minutes without real bad back pain. I’m afraid I may have to go back to a chiropractor. I’ve already had a couple rounds of treatments since my car accident. But I’m getting more and more afraid that this back pain might be chronic even as I lose weight. It’s really sad as I used to walk thirty minutes a day, five days per week before my car accident. I know now that wreck messed me up more than I cared to admit. Hopefully as I lose more weight, the back pain can subside.
As it is, I’m taking it easy for the next couple days as things are getting straightened out back home. And I am enjoying the first true downtime in the last few weeks.
Been kind of depressed and irritable for the last several days. Haven’t been sleeping well either. About the only thing going really well for me is my renewed diet. I am eating less than I normally do and getting more activity. I get my activity in the afternoons even though I’m in the habit of sleeping until noon again.
I also no longer want to socialize. And this time I don’t feel guilty for it. I am tired of people who are in foul and angry moods trying to drag me down into their own mindlessness and petty vendettas. Unfortunately, anymore, if it weren’t for negativity and fighting, there would be few conversations and certainly no social media. I hate how I just can’t have a civilized conversation with even people I partly agree with anymore. And good luck trying to talk to anyone who doesn’t view the world the same way you do. I’m beginning to think that many people have mental health problems just because of the way we treat each other and the stress of modern living. Granted, a person doesn’t have to be chronic like those of us on disability to have problems. I have had a mental illness for almost twenty years now. And only recently are people starting to talk about the effects of stress, anxiety, and chronic mental illnesses. For the first several years of my diagnosis I didn’t talk about my mental health to anybody. And I think I lost several good friendships because my friends didn’t understand that my depression and anger were nothing personal, they were manifestations of the sickness.
For the first several years of my illness I just didn’t talk about it, not even to friends or employers. Back in those days mental illness was shrouded in more mystery and ridicule than even now. I have no idea how many times I was told to ‘suck it up’ or ‘man up’ in those early years. ‘Man up’. Now there is a stupid phrase I can’t figure out. What does it even mean? Is there really only one type of manliness? And why is it the only type of virtues in a man we appreciate are those that involve the John Wayne frontier mentality that violence is the only way to solve all problems? I think this is stupid, very stupid. A mentality like that will make our species extinct. And quite honestly, I enjoy living too much to sit idle while this type of barbarian behavior is honored and encouraged. I would rather not go back to the Stone Age. I hated all the ‘Mad Max’ movies and I definately don’t want to experience them in real life.
Another thing, we don’t females to ‘woman up’ and we don’t tell senior citizens to ‘young down’ nor do we tell terminally ill people to ‘hurry up and die.’ It’s little things that normal people just take for granted that I don’t understand and that I often see the dumbness and hypocracy in. But most people seem pretty cool with dumb things and hypocracy anyway, at least when it comes from sources they like. Unfortunately I never understood this line of thinking. It’s probably why I have problems socializing with the public at large. And of course having a chronic mental illness that people are still ignorant about doesn’t help either.
In closing, as a thought experiment, I was wondering what would happen if someone (or a group of individuals) just went about their daily lives being as rude and condescending to physical people as we are to people in our online interactions. I would love to see some psychiatrist conduct this experiment. I think the results would be either very interesting or very disturbing.
I haven’t been doing as well the last few days as I have been in previous months. I’m feeling excessively paranoid and just wanting to be alone all the time anymore. I don’t even enjoy talking on the phone. Other than a couple friends and a couple futurist groups, I have given up on socializing on facebook. Just seems to me that everyone wants to be irritable and riled up all the time anymore. And it makes me sick. Makes me wonder why bother being an optimist or trying to stay in a good mood. Everyone else it seems is in always in a lousy and angry mood, why should I be any different? I just don’t see any happiness or genuine joy in the world anymore. I’m just scared all the time anymore. I’m scared of my neighbors, I’m scared of my landlords, I’m scared of my family, and I’m scared of even friends and acquiantances anymore. It’s like empathy doesn’t exist anymore. I just want to stay home and sleep all the time anymore. And even in my dreams I am tormented. But at least my dreams aren’t real. My paranoias might not be reality either, but they just as well be as that is how powerful the human mind is. I’m just too tired and burned out to stay angry all the time anymore. That anger has given way to genuine fear and anxiety. I am tired of being full of fear all the time. I used to believe the future would be really cool if we could get past our short term issues. I no longer believe that. I think the dystopians were right and the future will be worse than even now. I’ve observed people in my own life since I was a child and rarely do people change for the better over the years. Most actually get more angry, greedy, irritable, and hateful as they age. At least, that’s the impression that I have gotten over the years. I’m tired of always being sad and depressed. I’m tired of seeing nothing but hate and anger in everyone I meet anymore. People like that just as well be back in the Stone Age. And maybe that’s where we are heading. I hope not. I guess I’m writing just to get things I’ve kept bottled up for weeks now. I’m scared if I had the traditional psych breakdown where I vent for a couple hours that I’ll get the cops called on me and I will definately then be evicted. I’ve always had the fear of being evicted from my apartment too. Had that for years. I doubt it would be any better if I owned my own property. I’m just paranoid to a disabling degree. But such is the nature of schizophrenia. And I still have no understanding of people who don’t believe that mental illness exists. But some people are just ignorant and lack any kind of empathy. If you have no empathy, than I won’t deal with you. The world needs empathy, compassion, and a willingness to forgive and let a few things slide more than ever. And I just don’t see this happening, at least not where I live.
Currently in the middle of my spring cleaning. It’s not going as fast as I would like it to though. My lower back flares up after being on my feet for awhile so I have to go slower than I used to. I am beginning to fear that lower back pain is something I’ll be fighting for the rest of my life. One of the reasons this is turning into a bigger than usual job is that I wasn’t keeping up on the cleaning and maintenance this winter like I had in years past. I didn’t keep up on it because of the back pain and occasional bouts of depression to where I didn’t want to do anything but read and watch youtube videos. I went through a lot of that last fall and this past winter. I don’t know if it was the weather that had me depressed or if the illness was flaring up in different ways than previously. I did go through bad bouts of paranoia when I would sometimes go two to three days in a row without leaving my apartment. I don’t get the paranoia nearly as bad anymore. I don’t know if the weather turning warmer or just the natural cycles of my schizophrenia is causing these changes.
It’s not that I was lazy about my upkeep just because I was lazy. I have lived on my own more or less for fourteen years and I always made a point to keep my place picked up and better looking than most bachelor pads. I think the mental illness was effecting me more this last fall and winter than I would have cared to admit. Looking back on some of my winter writings I was really paranoid and too often had delusional feelings of persecution that, in reality, were alive only in my stressed and diseased mind. I have to admit as my paranoia can flare up worse than in years past and with my physical health not as robust as it once was, I have to bring in outside help. I am convinced I’ll need to reconfigure my budget and hire a regular cleaning service. Sometimes I’d be depressed about the apartment looking shabby and the apartment looked shabby because I was too depressed and paranoid to do anything about it. I know I can get back on top of my current issues. Living on my own for fourteen years I have proven to myself and others that I can even if it takes me a little longer than many average people. It’s just a matter of doing so.
I know that sometimes in my blog I probably appear over optimistic about having schizophrenia and being an adult in general. Sometimes that is be encouraging to the readers, sometimes I write things I need myself to hear. I imagine I have been overly optimistic when I wasn’t in the grips of paranoia and delusion this winter.
In other news, I think I’m starting to lose weight again. I can tell my clothes are fitting looser and my back pain isn’t as intense. As far as my diet goes, I have cut out pasta, rice, and bread. I eat mostly grilled lean meats and vegetables anymore. And I think I’m starting to see some results. I want to get back on top of everything that slid during my fall and winter bouts of depression, paranoia, delusions, and anxiety. At least I no longer feel anxious when I hear footsteps in the hallway. So that’s a start.
I am no longer sleeping ten to twelve hours a day. Instead I’m now averaging about six to eight hours of sleep. Even though I usually sleep only three hours at a stretch, I still feel pretty rested overall. I’m getting a little more active with each passing day now the days are long and the weather is getting warmer. I have noticed I have some aches and pains, namely in my back and thighs that make walking for more than several minutes at a time painful. Obviously the inactivity of a hard winter took it’s toll on me. I changed my diet a couple weeks ago. I think I’m starting to notice some difference. I’m not as lethargic, I don’t get irritable as easily, I need less sleep, and I’m getting to where I actually want to socialize a little every day. I still have days I want to just stay home, read books, watch youtube, and play computer games. But with the better weather, I actually want to get out of the house.
I’m currently in the middle of my spring cleaning. It’s kind of slow going as I still have the unexplainable aches and pains that don’t allow me to work as long as I once could. Even as recently as five years ago I could spend several hours on my feet without a break. Not so anymore. I now understand why older workers aspire to desk jobs once their careers get going strong. At this point I’m glad I can do a blog while sitting down. I just can’t be on my feet all day like I could even a few years ago. I’m sure a lot of this is due to weight gain. And I gained the weight through inactivity while depressed and anxious. Many of the psych meds out there do have weight gain as a side effect. But I guess I would rather have a sharp and stable mind with a weakened body as the other way around. It’s sad that mental illness often involves trade offs like this.
I am adjusting to the warmer weather and increased activity of spring. It is a slow and sometimes painful process as my body doesn’t recover from pain as fast as it once did. I knew this was going to come eventually, but I was hoping I could have put it off for a few more years. It’s kind of a pity that I start falling apart physically right at the time I am figuring out what I’m good at and where I fit in society. But I suppose every one goes though this as they transition into middle age. I miss the vitality I had in my early twenties but I certainly don’t miss most of the younger years drama. I’m ready to move into mid life.
Spring is here though I wouldn’t know it by the weather. Got a few inches of snow on Easter Sunday. Even though much of it has melted by now, it’s supposed to stay colder than normal early spring for the next few days. It’s a pity as I was looking forward to warmer weather and fewer excuses for staying indoors most of the time. As it is I probably won’t go anywhere until the weather finally warms up.
Been adjusting to new sleeping patterns. I’m going to bed earlier and waking up earlier. I still sleep only five to seven hours a night so I’m usually awake around sunrise anymore. During much of the winter I would sleep almost until noon. But the sleep patterns are changing with the seasons. So I must adapt accordingly. I still feel mentally stable even though I still have little desire to socialize much outside of friends and family. I still call my parents a couple times a week. Haven’t talked to my college friends much the last couple weeks. One old friend just had his first child a couple weeks ago, so I’ve been giving him his space as he adapts to fatherhood. Other friends I have lost contact with over the last few years, I want to reestablish contact with these. I also lost contact with some family members over the last few years I want to reconnect with. I just got busy with my life and my mental illness got such in some cases I just didn’t want to contact even friends. I lost many of my old interests over the last couple years. I haven’t gone fishing in almost two years. My back can flare up bad enough anymore that I don’t do much outdoors anymore. I can understand why people with chronic pain can sometimes be short tempered, especially if they were in good health in their younger years.
I’ve been fighting weight problems since puberty. Yet for the longest time in spite being over weight I didn’t have problems with mobility, pain, etc. When I was in college I could easily walk over five miles a day in spite weighing over three hundred pounds. Yet I think the chronic pain is catching up to me. I can use the car accident I had messing up my back as an excuse, but after the accident I got really depressed and quit doing most physical activities. I stopped going to the park regularly. I stopped walking around the old downtown. I stopped going to the library, preferring to read online articles and audio books instead. I stopped going fishing. I even stopped road tripping. I hate to admit it, but the car accident really took a lot of fire out of me. At least, I allowed it to take a lot of fire out of me. To this end I decided I want to get back on top of my health. I’m giving up on the sugary foods and soda pops. I’m going to cut the bread out. I’m cutting out most carbs. And I started lifting arm weights again. Oddly I got this idea from a pizza delivery lady who said she lost over fifty pounds just giving up sugar, bread, rice, and pasta. I am going to do the same thing. Started this over the weekend.
First I decided to track what I was eating. Took only a couple days to see I was eating mostly bread, pasta, canned soups, and meat. Explains why I’m not losing weight. While I’ll probably end up spending more money on groceries buying healthier and fresher food, if I lose weight it will be worth it. I’ve lost weight before. I once lost over seventy pounds in less than a year. Unfortunately I gained it all back over the course of three years. One of my blessings is I can usually lose weight pretty fast when I commit to it. Of course I also have the opposite curse, I can gain weight pretty fast when I am not careful about what I eat. I tend to be undisciplined about my diet when I go through bouts of depression and anxiety. But I’m going back to what worked in the past. Been eating mostly meat and fresh fruit the last few days. I’ve noticed I have a little more energy even after a few days. And since I kicked my fast food habit over the winter, I don’t think that will be much of a problem now. It’s just a matter of giving the time and effort to making the plans work.
Been trying to adapt to new sleep patterns for the last several days. Mentally I’m still stable but I am not sleeping as much as I once was. For much of the winter I was sleeping 10 to 12 hours a day. I’m now down around 5 to 7 hours. Been this way for almost a week now. I don’t know if it’s due to longer days or warmer weather or what. As it is I am not sleeping as much as I was for most of the winter.
I’m still trying to figure out what to do with the newly found free time. Since at least Christmas, I had been used to getting everything I need done in the short amount of time I was awake. I have found over the course of the last several days I’m getting more done, leaving my apartment more often, diversifying my activities, contacting friends and family more, etc. But I also find myself with times of boredom and restlessness. I usually take my medications in the middle of the night as I like to be awake in the off hours. I’m now finding myself wanting to be awake during daylight and not so much just wanting to be nocturnal all the time. But as I am no longer sleeping 10 hours a day, I find myself being both a morning person and a night person. Traditionally rapid changes in sleep patterns have been precursors to mental health problems with increased anxiety and paranoia. But I hope to cut these off and try to get back to some more regular sleep.
Overall I’m glad that the winter is over. We do have a spring snow coming this weekend. But those never last long. Currently watching opening day of baseball on tv in the background. I’m glad winter is over. Mentally I stayed stable all winter but at the cost of hibernating much of the winter. I’m looking forward to doing more outside again.
As quickly as the weather turned decent, it turned back to cold, dreary, and rainy. But I actually like rainy weather. Living on the plains of Nebraska, we need good spring and summer rains for the corn crops. But now that I’m up more in the days I can spend my daylight hours drinking hot coffee, listening to jazz music on YouTube, playing computer games, and just enjoying the sights and sounds of early spring. I still force myself out of my apartment at least once a day just on principle. I didn’t used to isolate so much. In fact, I used to be rather social to people in my complex until a few years ago. I think that losing three close friends in less than six months like I did in 2014 really took more of a toll on me than I initially thought. I became rather jaded and cynical for a couple of years. But then again, many people I knew became this way right about that time. So I stopped socializing as much. I stopped going to the park several times a week. I preferred to stay home, sleep, and socialize online rather than in person.
I think I’m starting to pull out of that just wanting to be left alone all the time. I try to socialize some every day, even if it is just with the delivery lady or mail man or cashier at the store. But I really haven’t talked to my neighbors much this winter. I’m trying to break out of that. I see that my complex has had several new people move in during the last few months. I need to get out more and see who they are. I’ve been in this complex now for almost twelve years. In some ways I’m becoming one of the more tenured residents even though I’m only in my late thirties. Originally this complex was designed for senior citizens and low income disability people. I was one of the first low income disability young people to move in years ago, at least from what I understand. For most of those first several years I worked part time jobs. It was in 2012 that I became tired of office place politics and decided to devout my energies to seeing if I get blogging up and going. I had been writing poetry, mental illness essays, and a couple novels before then. It was in 2012 I came to the conclusion I would have a better audience eventually if I set up an online blog. After a few years of this I have been proven right. I have had a bigger audience than I could have imagined just six years ago. It has gotten to where I almost never have days when I don’t have any traffic anymore. And I almost always have as much outside the USA traffic as I do inside the USA. It makes sense once I looked up the numbers and found that almost 95 percent of the world’s population isn’t from the USA. Being in a more isolated area of my country I have to remind myself of that occasionally.