i’m trying

I’m trying to start the year out right, to some extent. At 10:30, I was in bed, alarm set, with the intention of getting up early and making good use of the day — going to go through things, get rid of stuff, organize, file. But here it is, 1:16 a.m., and I’m still awake.

I’m still awake for several reasons. It’s not for lack of trying. I just got up to type this after lying in bed, having set said alarm (attached to a pretty rad sleep tracking device on my new iPhone suggested by Amy H. that’s replete with soundscapes and everything — trying to lull myself right now with the sounds of the Amazon) and also trying to heed the advice of many sleep experts — if you’re not tired, get up and do something else until you are. Not to mention, I started to have a blog post rattle around in my head. It’s probably because I didn’t muster up the energy to do the “last day of the year” or “first day of the year” post or something.

Seriously, though — one of the reasons is that I started to fall asleep organically around 10:30 and then woke up around 11 or so due to some text messages and stuff — some of which I had initiated and some of which came my way. No biggie, really — normally, I’d have been up until 1 a.m. just as a matter of course. But without making resolutions, I was trying to try something different tonight. Just happened to coincide with the first of the year and all.

The other reason I’m still awake is that I’m stuck with my meds. I’m in limbo. I have three of the meds that I’m “normally” on. I’m missing my anti-depressant, which I’ve been off of for months — the months that are hardest to be off of an anti-depressant — fall and winter and such. And what makes it even more complicated is that I need another medicine to help me sleep. When I don’t take it, I stay awake or don’t fall asleep until *very* late and then sleep very poorly, resulting in feeling like the night after a long night of illicit substances.

However, when I take it (even in very small doses — like 12.5 mg, when I can normally be prescribed 50 or 100 mg), I can sleep, but then find that waking up in the morning can be difficult (understatement) OR I find if I have the day off that I will nap at 11 a.m. and find myself waking up at 2 p.m. and have absolutely NO motivation to do absolutely any of the great things I had planned for myself that day (e.g., writing, cleaning, organizing, errands, leaving the house before 5 p.m., leaving the house at all).

And it’s hard to talk about this stuff these days. I remember when I had this blog early on and would talk about my manic-depression and being completely ruined over a guy or whatever. It was raw and honest and pretty therapeutic, to be honest. But to some, I’m sure it looked pretty fucking crazy. I’ve bounced back and forth with the concept over the last (nearly) nine years here. What to do? Write what I know? What I feel? Or worry about what people in my life might think about me? Worry about what potential jobs might think? Co-workers? I’m always caught between wanting people to read this (it currently automatically posts to Facebook, for instance) and wanting people to think I’m cool, to still respect and like me.

It’s a curious dichotomy, to be sure. I mean, I have a book on manic-depression in the works. And on a daily basis, I am largely unashamed about the fact that I am a recovering alcoholic, a stabilized manic-depressive. I want others to draw inspiration — the idea that you don’t have to be ruined by these things. The idea that it doesn’t have to be a death sentence. Hopefully, the idea that you can (I can?) be intelligent and funny and useful and interesting and potential relationship material. That one can hold a job and have friends and have creative endeavors. That I’m a real person with real feelings and a real personality.

Maria Bamford talks about these things on stage. She talks about the psych ward and suicide and depression. But she’s Maria Bamford. I’m not Maria Bamford (yet). So, it’s hard to expect people to be okay with talking about not being able to sleep because your manic-depression meds aren’t right because you don’t have health insurance and your low-income clinic had its funding cut and you don’t have the money to pay the psychiatrist so you have been without a scrip for one of your meds and things are sort of out of whack and you’re actually surprised at how well things *are* going considering it’s winter and maybe you are wondering if you really need meds at all — but you realize how CRAZY that sounds, cause when anyone else you know who’s bipolar says that, you just think what a fucking future disaster that sounds like, so you keep taking the ones you have — actually, you finally just added one back that you had been ignoring in the hopes that it would help you sleep without using that other one that knocks you the fuck out but …. at this point, you are either boring or wigging people out or both.

So, you just do it. You get up and go to the job you love and doesn’t pay you enough and you keep on trying to get a full-time job that pays more and maybe, just maybe, has health insurance. And you’re going to try and start eating better and sleeping better and trying not to focus on your weight and instead try to start walking each day and not focus on how much you hate it at this point, but try and just focus on DOING it. You’ve liked Michael Moore for a long time, and now he’s doing something else you like. This walking thing. So, maybe just do that.

And I can’t sleep and honestly, I’m thinking about doing that, but it’s late and all of a sudden I have this idea it might not be a great idea at 1:36 a.m. And instead I want to go driving. But, I need to save my money to go take Flan in tomorrow, I think. I need to know how much weight she’s lost. I think it’s considerable at this point. I don’t know what to do. She eats, she goes to the bathroom. She sleeps a LOT. A lot, a lot. I have told her on more than one occasion to let me know when she is just. too. tired.

As much as I don’t want to end her life before its time, I also don’t want to wait until it’s SO fucking obvious. Because in my opinion, it means that she will have been in pain for too long, right. There is a very sick part of me that wants to just do it now so I don’t have to think about it anymore. That’s murder. It’s a confusing spot to be in, for sure. Because it’s always murder, it’s just kind murder sometimes. And there’s a terrible, awful selfish part of me that wants to do it and get it out of the way and then just be a free agent and move. Go to L.A., go to NYC. Be free of everything here and try and start over. I honestly don’t know how that would work, given my current struggles in the place I know and love, but something in me says that it might be the right thing to do.

Well, there you go. Honest as the day is long. That’s always good for something, right?

2 thoughts on “i’m trying

  1. First have you tried any natural type sleep remedies, such as melatonin and sleep inducing teas? Second even if you are just “laying in bed” believe it or not you are still getting some sleep, so part of the problem is you need to get up and move before the afternoon. Flan? Every pet owner signs up for the inevitable, it’s part of the deal. And third the only place Moore is walking to is the buffet line.

  2. I could relate to so much! I often don’t leave replies, but thought on this one I should drop a line to let you know. I miss you my friend and if your travels take you out to Denver, I’d love to grab coffee.

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