Finding Happiness in 2020

Even though I don’t socialize much in person anymore, I try my best to stay connected to family and friends. Talked with my parents over FaceTime this morning. My dad had a check up on his heart and he does not need stints or surgery. He is joining a neighborhood gym as he wants to get more active again. I started lifting weights again on a regular basis last week. Even after a few sessions I can feel the strength and endurance starting to return.

In bad news, two of my friends in Omaha tested positive for covid. They are under quarantine for the next two weeks. They aren’t able to work and they sleep most of the time. One friend is a delivery man so he obviously can’t be going anywhere until this clears. Fortunately they seem to be doing better now than a few days ago. I imagine eventually I’ll catch this too. I just hope it’s mild. Even though I’m only 40, I am overweight and mentally ill.

Got some groceries coming this morning. I’m rebuilding my winter supplies. The leaves are starting to change in my hometown. I usually have my windows open during the day but run the furnace at night as it’s starting to get chilly after dark.

I’ve been forcing myself out of my apartment a couple times a day for almost a week now. Sometimes it is as simple as just standing in the hallway for a few minutes. Sometimes I’ll even set up a chair in my doorway so I can sit and try to chat with whomever shows up.

I nap more during the days. I am usually my most active in late mornings and overnights these days. My sleep patterns can change with the seasons and they change if my illness changes too. Haven’t had any serious breakdowns for a few weeks. I still have minor flare ups at least once or twice per day. They don’t usually last long. I have gotten to where I can just let them pass and not feel bad they happen.

I have a couple packages from amazon coming this afternoon. I imagine kids growing up today look forward to the amazon delivery man as much as I did going to the mall when I was growing up.

Changed the parts on my cpap machine yesterday. Slept really well last night. I try to change out the parts a few times a year just to keep the machine properly working.

I don’t have much else planned for the rest of the week. My cleaning lady arrives on Thursday afternoon. I like her. She engages me in conversation while she works. I usually just stay sat down and out of her way while she cleans. I supply the cleaning agents and she does the rest. And she at least tolerates my eccentric sense of humor ūüôā

Social Media Detox, Caffeine Detox, and Holding Onto Close Friends and Family

Mentally I’m feeling stable, at least as stable as a schizophrenic can be during a pandemic and economic depression.¬† I think it helps that I don’t watch the news or spend much time on social media anymore.¬† I have a few friends I hear from on facebook, but I no longer participate in any groups.¬† I may read posted articles about science and tech, but I no longer comment on them.¬† Too many people just looking for arguments.¬† And I’m burned out on it.¬† I no longer have the patience to deal with people I never met who wouldn’t dare act that way to someone in person.¬† Over the last few years, I’ve also purged close to 80 percent of my friends’ list.¬† So much for social media bringing people together.¬† At least I still hear from old friends and some family.

Been out and about a few times over the last week.¬† I still keep to myself mostly.¬† My neighbors moved out a week ago.¬† I’m sad they are gone.¬† They were the best neighbors I ever had in my entire life even going back to childhood.

I have been staying up later and waking up later the last few weeks.¬† I usually stay awake until midnight, wake up in the middle of the night at least once, and them am awake for good by 9 am.¬† I have odd dreams, but they aren’t scary.¬† Mostly they are about having to redo high school or college or about friends from my past.

Been cutting back on caffeine.¬† I’m giving up coffee.¬† It’s makes me too irritable.¬† I mostly drink just water anymore.¬† I rarely eat carbs.¬† I don’t even buy bread.¬† Most of the groceries I buy are frozen meat, canned vegetables, soups, etc.¬† I haven’t been having problems getting what I need lately.¬† But I still stock up on non perishables in case there are shortages again.¬† I fear we still have a long way to go for this pandemic and depression to be over.

Reading, Beginning of School Year, Music, and Arguing With Myself

Still reading quite a bit. ¬†I started a couple audiobooks in addition to the hardback I’m currently working on. ¬†For some odd reason I prefer to be reading on at least three books at a time. ¬†I sometimes lose interest in one after awhile and concentrate on the other two for a few days. ¬†Then I’ll go back to the one I put on the back burner. ¬†I spend a good deal of my time anymore either reading or working on my computer. ¬†Haven’t watched much for tv or sports for a couple weeks. ¬†As football will be starting again in a couple weeks, I imagine I’ll be spending some of my Saturday afternoons watching college football again.

It’s starting to feel close to fall again. ¬†School started in my town and the college kids will be moving back in this weekend. ¬†Even though I’m in my late 30s and haven’t been in a college classroom since 2005, I always enjoy when the college students come back. ¬†College was some of the happiest times for me during the course of my “formal” education. ¬†The weather has been cooler than typical August the last few days and it gets cool enough at nights that I have to pull up the blankets while I sleep. ¬†I even wore long sleeves for the first time since early April two nights ago.

Been having occasional flare ups of irritability the last several days. ¬†I’ve been going to bed earlier than usual to try to counteract this. ¬†I’m also avoiding negative and rude people as much as possible too. ¬†So I haven’t been socializing as much as I would like. ¬†Such is the price of preventative maintenance.

Been listening to more music lately. ¬†I don’t have any physical CDs or tapes anymore as I look all my music up online via youtube and pandora. ¬†Why pay for tunes when you don’t need to? ¬†My favorite genres of music are hard rock and jazz. ¬†Strange combination I know. ¬†I listened to a lot of country when I was in college but also mixed in heavy metal when I was reading or studying. ¬†There really isn’t much I won’t listen to. ¬†I do prefer the hip hop of the nineties to much of what is popular in that genre now. ¬†I developed a taste for some of the newer techno and dance music in the last few years. ¬†So I guess I haven’t completely shut myself off the newer music. ¬†When I was a kid I used to get annoyed with adults who complained about the music and clothing styles of the “damn kids.” ¬†I promised myself even before I went to high school that I would never become one of those types when I grew up. ¬†Even today I lose my patience with people my own age complaining about younger people. ¬†Makes me wonder why some people even have kids if they’re just going to complain and moan about them all the time.

Other than the occasional flare ups that are gone after a few minutes of inner dialog with the ‘voices’, I feel quite well overall. I’m glad I have gotten this far into summer without any true problems. ¬†Hope things continue to go well.

Yet More Changes In Sleep Patterns

I’ve been having changes in my sleep patterns again, this time probably for the better overall. ¬†I’m usually wanting to go to bed around 10pm and I’ll sleep for three hours. ¬†Then I’ll wake up and be up for an hour or two. ¬†Then I’ll go back to sleep until 8am. ¬†Now I spend most of my waking time in daylight hours. ¬†Earlier this summer I spent most of my waking life in the overnight hours. ¬†But I do think it’s for the better.

I was feeling a little more short tempered and easily irritated for a few days earlier this month. ¬†I think the changes of sleep may be a way to ward off bigger problems in the future. ¬†But I’m starting to feel better again even if I am sleeping more. ¬†But at least I sleep when most of the world sleeps now.