Wednesday, October 23, 2013

It's throwing me off a little

I called my counselor today. I had an appointment scheduled for two weeks from today, but I finally decided it was worth calling her to see if I could get in next week. I briefly mentioned having a former student of mine pass away, and that it was throwing me off a little. Thankfully, she is able to get me in next Tuesday.

See, in many ways, I'm just fine. I work, I... Okay, so work is the most normal thing in my life now. I enjoy my job still. I enjoy my kids. Etc. Of course, there is, um, challenges sometimes, too, when you work with toddlers. So I get that, too. Let me assure you that I get plenty frustrated some moments.

Then there is the rest of my life. There is eating. There is upset stomach. Really? Couldn't you just settle down. My life is hard enough right now. And there is budgeting, which always seems to turn around and give me eating issues. I don't want to "waste" my money. So then I think, I have extra weight right now. I don't need to buy such-and-such food. That works until I get too hungry, and then I have to change plans. Of course, right now, I'm kind of anti-eating. I still eat all three meals and some snacks, so don't worry. I just think eating is a nuisance.

Then there is sleeping. First off, I am forever tired, day in, day out. Secondly, I don't go to bed. Until late. So that would not help the tiredness issue. But yeah, getting myself to get up and go to bed seems to be my biggest issue right now.

There is cleaning my apartment. Or rather, not cleaning it. I did clean up one corner of my room. It looked pretty good. Of course, now the garbage bag and bag of grocery bags are getting fuller and fuller. Because taking out the garbage is too much work. Of course, it has been for a good while. I've actually done laundry recently, so that is pretty good for me.

There is schoolwork. Like the paper I turned in today. I needed to write a page on the biggest two issues facing children with hearing loss. So I did. I rambled on. I wrote it straight out of my brain, as opposed to trying to research it. (It wasn't a research paper, though. It was simply "a paper," so I decided to write an opinion response paper.) I actually turned it in by eight o'clock this evening, which is another impressive act. It was due tonight, but I was expecting I would finish closer to nine.

Let's see. That pretty much covers it.

You know that song, "You are my sunshine"? It was played at the memorial service for my little former student. I have it on a CD at work. I sing it while I put my toddlers to bed for nap. And I...

Well, sometimes I'm sad. Sometimes I want to show friends the child's picture. Sometimes I don't quite know what I feel. I'd like to get through whatever the process of grief is quick, so I could get back to my normal life. Yet, I'm sure not ready to forget my little child.

And I'm praying for the family, which makes use of my troubling thoughts, yet is emotionally taking its toll. Who knew that praying for people was such a burden? Because there's the child's family, then another friend of mine had two friends die, so prayers for her and her husband, then another friend was in the hospital... It is just so sad.

Well, I'd better eat something so that I have a chance at sleeping sooner (hunger can keep me awake). And turn on music besides "You are my sunshine" to get my thoughts into lighter places so that I can relax and fall asleep.

Friday, October 18, 2013

death and life

A child I used to care for passed away. Surprise. Unexpected. I cried already. I've smiled at memories. I tried to forget while at work, and it worked by the end of the day, until my boss sweetly told me she'd pray for me.

But it just seems so surreal. A non-compute. Because little kids aren't supposed to die.

Going to bed is tough. I can plow through the rest of the day, but going to bed seems almost wrong somehow. Like it is carrying on as if all was normal when it isn't. Like I should be doing something for him or his family or something.

I worked. The first hour or so felt really weird. A disconnect from the kids I work with that I am currently reminded could die at any time. Basically any person or animal could die at any time. And I expect death when people or animals get to old. Not that it doesn't still bother me.

Actually, I feel a lot like I felt when my grandpa died. Including happening to have a cold or something on the side. But minus the guilt that I hadn't flown back to visit him (my grandpa) like I had said I might or something like that (at least OCD was convinced I had broken my promise to him). So at least that guilt isn't there.

Not that OCD isn't there. People seem to have some sympathy when things go wrong like somebody dying. But not OCD. It jumps up and says, "Are you sure you should have canceled playing guitar at the women's retreat from church this weekend in the interest of keeping your cold to yourself, getting time to recuperate, and then the added memorial service? Maybe that was the wrong choice."

You'd think it could give me a break.

Instead of saying, "Maybe you drove over your neighbor and the thing that looks like a person inside the glass door isn't really him." Nice, OCD. Really sweet of you.

But at least as the day went on, it seemed to slack off.

So that is where I am now. Scatterbrained and somewhere between my normal life that is going well and the broken comprehension that a little kid's tour on earth has ended. With a cold on the side.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Advice for advice givers

Well, I recently had the stomach flu. With a low grade fever and generally feeling rather miserable, though in a different way than mental illness. Thankfully, it didn't last long. But it reminded me of depression in how I just felt very yucky in a very concentrated way.

So anyway, from that experience came my advice for people wanting to give spiritual advice to people struggling hard with depression and/or anxiety. Here it is, straight from where I shared it on Facebook (not so sure how good an idea it was to put it on Facebook, but maybe I'll find out):
It is Mental Illness Awareness Week. So for today, let me share advice for advice-givers. If you want to give advice to someone really struggling with depression or anxiety, run it through the stomach flu test. If this is something you would like someone to tell you while you try not to puke, it is probably fine to share. On the other hand, if you wouldn't like being told to read your Bible more, pray more, and for goodness sakes, trust God more while you are trying not to puke, then don't say that to someone struggling hard with depression or anxiety. "Let me know how I can help" or "hang in there; I'm rooting for you" or even "I'm praying for you; God cares about you right now and so do I..." that is probably okay.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Nothing like coupling recovering from the second stomach flu in a month with an overwhelming class assignment due in several hours to bring on depressed thinking. Remember that HALT acronym, Hungry Angry Lonely Tired. I don't know who invented it; it wasn't me. But I've got Hungry down since I'm low on food since my stomach is just starting to accept food again after rejecting it thoroughly on Thursday. Then add some Angry - an assignment I'm a bit mad at myself for not doing earlier. And then, if anger doesn't need to logical a reason, how about I just say I'm mad that I'm in school, mad that I feel stuck in school because I am unwilling to drop out (i.e., I choose to finish), mad that bachelor's degrees are seen as so important and that I went along with it enough to try and get one, mad that I don't know the information for the class better, basically mad at myself since I don't think it is fair to be mad at the instructor for this assignment that actually requires some effort. Add in lonely... I've been hibernating with my lovely flu, with the exception of working yesterday afternoon. And then put in TIRED in capital letters, because getting over an illness plus lack of food plus having to work on schoolwork plus working a full time job generally equals a good bit of tiredness by the weekend.

I see my counselor this coming week. And I'm really glad. And really tired. And if she was the sort of person who said "I told you so," then she could. Because working full time and taking classes is rough. I'm just... tired. I get to see my psychiatrist next week, too, because that is how the schedules finally worked out. What will I tell him? Probably that I'm doing okay except that I'm really tired and I hate the clouds (which thankfully are taking a break this weekend so far) and the darkness and being "weak" enough that the stress of working a full time job alongside schoolwork leaves me tired. Even though I know it would leave anyone tired. Actually, I'll probably skip that last part, because it sounds a little stupid to me. I'm tired because I am doing something tiring.

Well, maybe when I eat more, I'll feel better.

But then there is the post-flu eating issue: will I feel sick if I eat such-and-such. And right now, the answer seems to mostly be yes. Yes, I'll feel sick, but not so sick as to throw up, and I need the stupid food, so eat it anyway! How is that for my current weight loss plan - a plan that has gone on hold due to the lovely stomach flu.

Well, let me go back to my case study and arguing in what seems like it might be a slightly stupid way since I'm not Super-Know-It-All-High-A-Student in this class and I don't know everything. I get to argue about hearing aids. Not my specialty, but you have to take a bit on audiology to get a Communication Disorders degree. It is actually interesting, and would be more so if I was just more positively motivated (telling myself, "You idiot, why don't you hurry up and write something stupid so you can turn the paper in" isn't positively motivating even if it is still very slightly motivating) and perhaps feeling better and had more time and again, cared about it more.

I will say that I like trying to use jargon, which is basically what you aren't supposed to do. But I still forget too much of the jargon, which is then hard to look up without going back to the lectures. Thus, my jargonized sentences must be cut short. Oh, well. Back to the assignment.