Adjusting to Summer

Been staying near the complex and avoiding the early summer heat the last few days.  Bought groceries early this week so, in theory, I don’t have to leave the house for the next several days.  I’ll probably have to stay at home tomorrow as I’ll be getting a new air conditioner and thermostat.  My old air conditioner was almost forty years old and it broke down two weeks ago.  So I’ve been using lots of fans and a portable air conditioner since.  I’m glad that this problem will be solved soon.

I’ve been having a lot of issues hanging over my head for weeks that just seem to take longer then they should to get resolved.  My sink was fixed a couple weeks ago.  I started a new medication a week ago.  I’ve been sleeping in a recliner for a week now as my lower back has been giving me pain.  But I’ve been feeling quite stable mentally for the last several days.  I don’t want to sleep all the time anymore.  I’m usually awake quite early instead of sleeping until noon.  I’m taking better care of myself.  And I’m making a point to get out of my apartment to socialize with my neighbors for at least a few minutes every day.  The socializing is going kind of rough as there aren’t any people in my apartment complex who share my interests or likes.  Looking back on it, having three friends in here die within six months a couple years ago really effected me.  I lost a lot of good conversations after that.  So it’s tough finding things to talk about with people anymore.

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Hope and New Routines

I’m now a week into the changed medications routines.  I’m starting to notice a difference already.  I’m starting to wake up earlier.  I’m sleeping less.  I don’t want to sleep as much.  I’m starting to get a little more active.  I’m starting to have fewer aches and pains.  I’m more stable mentally.  I just don’t have the ups and downs like I used to.  I recover quicker from down times.  I’m beginning to get more active.  And I’m socializing more.

I managed to slog through another winter.  Spring is going on now.  We’ve had rain every day for almost the last week.  Things are really greening up now.  It still gets kind of chilly at night.  But I’m not running my heat during the days.  I’m still not as active as I would care to be as I still have flare ups of pain every now and then.  But even that is not as bad as it was a week ago.

I am hopeful that things are returning to normal again.  I haven’t had a sense of normal for a long time until a few weeks ago.  But things are looking better with each passing day.

Back Pains and Missing Out on Summer

I’m still healing from my back pain.  I’m able to walk short distances again.  I was able to run some errands three days ago so I don’t really have to leave my apartment for the next several days.  But since my back is clearing up I really think I should be back to normal within a few days.  I’ve been sleeping in a recliner the last few nights to rest my back.  The last time I try to sleep on my back I could barely get out of bed.  My routine has definitely been thrown off since I hurt my back.  And the worst part is I don’t know what I did to cause my back pain.

The weather has gotten much warmer just about the time I hurt my back.  Haven’t been able to get out and enjoy it at all.  I usually go to the park several times a week during the summer.  Haven’t been able to do this for almost two weeks.  Makes me feel like I’m missing out.  But I can’t rush this recovery.  I tried to rush things a few days ago and it set me back at least a day.

Been holding up mentally during most of this process.  I’ve had a few moments of depression and irritability during those times of weakness.  When I first hurt my back I thought I’d need two or three days of ibuprofen and ice and I’d be back to normal.  Didn’t turn out that way.  I haven’t had crushing bouts of depression during the last week and a half I’ve been mending from this injury.  I’ve had more boredom than anything.  But even with the boredom I haven’t called friends much during this injury.  I just haven’t had much to talk about with my friends during the last several days.  That’s probably the most depressing part of the whole deal.  Being on the mend has made me really feel like I’ve lost connection to my neighbors, my community, and my friends.  I haven’t done anything socially since I hurt my back.  It really has been boring.  Fortunately I haven’t had any relapse of the psychiatric problems in these last days.

I have pretty much spent most of my days playing computer games, watching youtube videos, and watching baseball games.  Not exactly really thrilling but there’s only so much I can do until my back returns to normal.  I have called my parents every other day to have some resemblance of a social life.  I can’t wait until my back finally clears up.  This certainly has made me appreciate my physical health more.

 

 

Early Spring This Year

It’s been warmer than usual late winters here for the last two weeks.  So I’ve been able to get back to walking outdoors most days.  Went to a park with a large lake where I walk in the summers three times a week a few times already.  Migratory bird season is in full swing.  I’ve seen lots of Canadian Geese and Cranes already.  So it is very possible that spring is starting earlier than usual this year.  No doubt we’ll have at least one more snow. But it won’t last long now.

Mentally I’ve been doing alright for the vast majority of the time.  Maybe it is the nicer weather cheering me up.  It does get old after awhile of being stuck indoors because of the cold and snow.  I’ve been sleeping better too.  I pulled only one all nighter last month.  I’m thinking the more consistent sleep is helping me manage my mental illness better.

Had the complex maintenance man come to my apartment this morning.  I had to have some things fixed and a few others replaced.  So I just left for a few hours and let him work.  In previous years I had been paranoid about letting others into my apartment when I wasn’t there.  I was concerned about what they would think about how I kept my place and if they were going through my personal stuff.  After being in the same place for ten years I’m not nearly as paranoid as I once was.  I’m actually not as paranoid overall as I once was.  I still have to deal with the fact I don’t handle stress well and I get easily irritated.  But even that should be getting better the older I get.

Stability With A Mental Illness

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Had my last chiropractic session a couple days ago.  I’m now released from regular treatments.  And my back feels even better than before my car accident in October.  Had a chronic ache in my tail bone from an injury in high school I never got treated.  Thought it was something I would just have to live with.  But with the regular chiropractic treatments out of the way for good, I now have a little more stability in my life with mental illness.

It’s been a month since the end of the holidays.  Things have settled down into a stable routine for me.  I enjoy the winter months because this is usually when I get a lot of reading and writing done.  I’m also far more sensitive to heat than cold.  And I don’t have to feel like I need to be doing something or going somewhere in winter, especially if the weather isn’t good.  It’s just easier for me to stay in for a couple days in winter if I feel like it.

In this routine I’ve actually gotten quite a bit done.  Been blogging more than usual.  Been reading a lot again.  And I’ve felt quite stable mentally.  Haven’t felt any real mental stability for any true length of time since probably last June.  I’m glad to have the stability back.  Almost forgot how good stability and the mundane can feel.

 

 

 

 

Long, Drawn Out Winter Days and Mental Illness

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No we don’t usually get to see the Northern Lights in Nebraska, but this is a cool picture anyway. Where I live we are in the middle of winter.  Been a typical cold winter.  Haven’t had any major snow storms but have had several small snows.  Haven’t gone anywhere for the last few days because of the ice and cold.  It gets dark by 6pm and doesn’t get light out until around 8am this time of year.  So I have long, drawn out nights to just sit and be anxious.  To try to ward this off I usually walk in the hallways for about 15 to 20 minutes every night, usually around 10 or 11 pm.  If I go too early, I’ll be dodging too many people to get a good walk in.  It’s too bad my apartment complex doesn’t have a small exercise room or even a treadmill in the community room.  Stuff like this would run a high risk of being vandalized in here.  I’ve seen just about everything come up missing in this complex.  People have stolen even house plants and door mats.  I’d have tenants trying to pirate my wireless internet if it wasn’t a private, password protected network.

If I sound a bit irritable it’s only because I’ve been home bound for a few days.  I admit to drinking too much coffee on cold days to warm myself up.  Not only am I on a caffeine crash, I’m also a little bored by being inside.  In America we have a slang term called “cabin fever.”  This merely means that a person is getting irritable and anxious from being forced to be inside most of the time, usually during the winter.  I imagine it was an old pioneer and homesteader term.  While we have only a few inches of snow on the ground, the ice is still pretty bad.  I saw two tenants slip in the parking lot just today.

But I did get to spend a little time outdoors just last night.  We had a good snow last night with almost no wind (a rarity in Nebraska where we usually have wind almost all the time in winter).  Just sat outside and watched the snow for an hour.  May not sound like much but with a mental illness even the little things can bring a sense of peace and calm.

Not much going on during the winter months but short days, long nights, trying to squeeze in a few minutes of walking whenever I can, arm weights three nights a week, some youtube, and computer games.  It’s nights like this that make me look forward to the spring months of April, May, and June, my favorite times of the year.

 

Adapting to Winter Exercise

Here we are in the early weeks of winter.  In my town we already have had more snow by early January than we did all of last winter.  Of course last winter was the driest one I remember.  With the increased ice, cold, wind, and snow, walking and exercising outside can be hazardous.  I’ve already slipped and fell on ice already.  Found out that even in my thirties I don’t bounce back as fast as I did in my teens and early twenties.

As a result of the changes in weather I’ve moved my exercising indoors.  Since I live in a big apartment complex I can walk the hallways in the off hours.  I still do arm weights three times a week.  I still keep track of everything I eat.  I avoid sugar and white floured foods as much as I can.  And I keep my mind occupied on these long nights by reading and watching educational videos on youtube.  I probably could have gotten a gym membership and avoided the hassles of having to exercise at home.  But I didn’t really use my gym membership when I had one.  Oddly, I started losing weight and getting healthier when I gave up my gym membership.

Mental health wise I’ve been very stable for the last several days.  Perhaps due to the madness of the holidays being over. I normally do well in winter and spring.  Regardless I have my indoor exercise projects, my writing projects, and the two print books and one long audiobook I’m reading to keep me occupied on these cold days.