Sunday 20 January 2013

Just to clarify...

Just so we're all absolutely, crystal clear; I am not now, nor have I ever been, suicidal. My last post was not a cry for help, or a plea for attention. As a society, we have an incredibly bad tendency to fear that which we cannot see, or understand. Mental health is one of those invisible things that make some so terribly, terribly, nervous. I have a problem with this. I am tired of the shame and embarrassment that seems to go hand in hand with mental illness. My goal in my last post was to try to alleviate some of those feelings. I was thinking about how much better I would have felt if I had of known that there was someone out there that was feeling the same way I was. I was thinking that if something I shared could make even one person not feel so bad, or lonely, or scared, or (gasp!) crazy, then it was worth spilling the beans. My beans. My most terrible moments. With you. Because even if you're fine, and fit as a fiddle, maybe you know someone who isn't. Maybe my blog will be mentioned in passing, and your words, which may have been benign to you, could be the push someone needs to ask for help. I've learned that there is this great power that comes with vulnerability. If you let your walls down, and allow people to see your messy bits, it somehow gives them permission to do the same. Helps people to not be so ashamed of their scars. Both the physical and the emotional. And that's why I told you all my story. My incredibly painful, awful story. So you wouldn't be alone. So that maybe, just maybe, you can hold your breath, and close your eyes, and admit to yourself, that you cannot carry the weight of the world all alone, on your tiny shoulders. So maybe you will remember that people need people, and the universe needs you, and you are so much greater than you give yourself credit for, and so much more important than you may ever truly understand. A great many things have happened in my life; some really good, and some really bad. But everything that has happened, that I've done, that I've survived, has brought me here, has made this woman who stands exposed before you, has made me a better version of me.

Wednesday 16 January 2013

A prisoner in my own body...

Okay people, I'm gonna let you in on a little secret, I've lost my shit. I don't mean right now, but around this time in 2012, I was a disaster.  A complete and total, utterly unrecognizable as myself, hiding under the covers, mess. With the assistance of many a medical professional, the general consensus, is that I have major depression combined with an anxiety disorder. The losing of my shit was what those oh so educated medical professionals call, a major depressive episode. It was awful. I've lost my shit before, but never like this. I couldn't leave the house, or the tub for that matter. I had to work up all day to have a shower, and was the worst chain smoking asthmatic person the world had ever seen. I didn't know what to do. It hurt so much, I didn't know what to do. I had to get it out. But nothing worked. All the sex, booze, nicotine, or food in the world wasn't making this chick feel any better. And believe me, I tried. Then came the climax of my little hell. I NEEDED to get the hurt out. So I tried to cut my heart out with a kitchen knife. Not the best course of action I assure you. And  in walks rock bottom. This is where the pills start. Cyprolex, Seroquil, Mertazapine, Clomasapam, Wellbutrin, Zopiclone; needless to say, I was highly medicated. Thanks to those wonderful little things that we all know as "side effects," I gained 60 pounds in two months. I went from a perfectly reasonable 135 pounds, to a jaw dropping, heart stopping, will to live depleting, 195. Really not helping the urge to crawl into a whole and die. As you may well be able to imagine, this period of my existence was not particularly pretty. But I pulled through. I persevered. I got my shit together. The stigma associated with mental health, and the acceptance and understanding, or lack there of as the case may be, is a topic I'll address at a later date, but the point is I made it through. Did I want to die? Yes. Did I think about ending it? Yes. Did my fucked up brain have me convinced that the world in general, and specifically those I love, would be better off without me. Yes. Did I do it? No. Why you ask? Because I'm not that much of an asshole. Because my uncle tried it and it didn't take, and he lost everything because of it. Because I saw a commercial after Kurt Cobain died saying that its a "permanent solution to a temporary problem." All the reasons I had for NOT offing myself are mute, what counts is that I didn't. The reason this matters is because I'm still here. And the reason that matters, is because, if I can't imagine my life without those I love, how can I expect them to imagine
a world without me? I'm taking a really long way to get at what I'm getting at, the scenic route if you will, but the point is, is that after all this, after over a year of total and complete misery, I rejoined the land of the living. I decided what I wanted to do with my life. And on September 24, 2012, I went back to school. It was great! Exhausting, but great! Not only was I learning exactly what I wanted to learn, but I was good at it! 4.3 GPA good at it! And then it happened. November 21, 2012 was the day. The day I almost died. After waking up, the lengthy process of the incision healing, and remaining more or less 100% positive throughout the entire experience, I finally fell apart. I almost lost my life. I almost lost everyone I love. I did lose school, albeit temporally, but for the moment, lost is lost. The problem now is, that yet again, I have an illness no one can see. I find it really hard to get my head around the fact that if you tell someone there is 300 trillion stars in our galaxy, they have absolutely no problem believing you, but if you tell them that the chemicals in your brain aren't mixing properly, your crazy. The infection attacked my cells, so very literally, every cell in my body needs to Repair. Every. Single. One. Have you any idea the amount of cells in the human body? In my body? About 100 trillion. How long do you think it would take for every single one of those to
fix themselves? Think about how long it takes a paper cut to heal, a broken bone to mend, a cold to
go away. And here's the rub. I'm so fucking sick of being sick. And tired of being tired. And absolutely no one has a solution. Or a time frame for that matter. I understand limbo. It blows. You know that scene in Jurassic Park where Timmy's stuck in the car, and the tyranasarus pushes the car over the barrier into the tree,Then Dr. Grant coaxes Timmy out of the tree, and when they get to the bottom the car falls on them, then Timmy says "well, we're back, in the car again"?? That's exactly how I feel. It was shit, I got out, and its shit again. I'm back in the car again. And the real pissoff? I'm working my ass off to get back to being a functioning member of society, and to society, all I look
like is lazy.

Monday 10 December 2012

How I almost died from an ingrown hair...

When reading this, try to remember it's ALL true!

This absolutely ridiculous tale, all begins, with an ingrown hair. One teeny tiny ingrown hair on my who who. It had been there for a few days, but just didn't seem to be healing. I didn't really think anything of it, because it's winter, and sometimes shit like that happens. So I kept putting alcohol and polysporin on it, but nothing. Nada. Bugger all. Then it kinda turned into a pimple looking thing, so I popped it. It kept coming back, so I kept popping it. On Sunday night I was in bed reading, when I got up to pee, I felt this sort of stiffness in my groin, but I just thought maybe I was laying funny. I woke up on Monday morning sick as hell! I felt like I had the worst flu I've ever had. I had a doctors appointment later that day, so I called in sick, and went back to bed. By this time the whole right side of my groin had started to swell and get really hot and red and angry looking. By the time it was time to go to the dr, I couldn't even sit. I had a temp of 103, and the redness and swelling had started to go down my leg, and up over my hip. I had to get my friend to drive me to the doctor (and thank goodness she did too, I was a bit of a mess), where he gave me an "examination", a wildly incorrect diagnosis, a prescription to treat what wasn't wrong with me, and 60 Percocet (which, I'll fully admit came in unbelievably handy after). On the way home I called my mom. To say I was hysterical would be a gross understatement. Anyway, we went to the pharmacy, got my drugs, and put me to bed. Mom came out and kidnapped me on Tuesday morning (an act which very literally saved my life), and set me up on her couch. In the evening (I was very honestly getting worse every minute) we called the nurses hotline, I didn't know if I should go to the hospital, or just wait...maybe it was just a really weird flu? Then I called my doctor, who chuckled and told me to stay home, and that I was fine. I was pretty sure I wasn't fine, but I figured he's the doctor, so he would know. Now bear in mind at this point, I can't sit, I'm taking 2 Percocet every 4 hours, I'm in excruciating pain, I can't eat, I can't get up without help, I haven't eaten anything since Sunday, and every time I did get up, the floor decided to wobble. 3am comes around and I can't get up, so I end up barfing all over moms living room (good thing I'd only had water for 2 days...). It was at this moment that I decided that I wanted to go to the hospital. Mom and I decided we'd go in the morning. Surrey hospital had just had that big flood, and RCH was beyond packed. So in the morning, moms got a massive migraine, and couldn't stop barfing (perfect timing). I had to pee, so I rolled off the couch onto the floor, and tried to crawl to the bathroom. Didn't work. I got stuck halfway there. I couldn't move. I've never actually not been able to move before. Worst feeling ever!!! We decided barfing or no barfing, it was time to go. Mom grabbed a couple barf bags, loaded me into the car (which took about 20 min), and off to the hospital we went. We had planned on going to Langley, but mom needed gas, and I honestly had never felt this awful in my life, so we said screw it, and stayed in new west. I walked into emerge, started balling my face off, looked at the lady behind the glass, and said "I need help. " She gave me a wrist band, took my pulse, and told me I'd be called in a minute. I hadent even managed to attempt to sit down, before I was called. This lady took my pulse and my blood pressure, called for a wheelchair, and straight into trauma bed 2 I went. So now I'm worried. The ER waiting room is packed, but I went straight in. I didn't go into emergency, but into trauma. There are people everywhere! Taking off my clothes, poking me with needles, asking me questions I couldn't answer, hooking me up to was beyond terrifying. My mom wasn't allowed in, there was an overdose in the bed to my left, and a stabbing in the bed to my right. I had absolutely no idea what was going on, and I had never been that scared before. Ever. Turns out I had a pulse rate of 165, my kidneys were shutting down, my body had gone into septic shock, and for all intents and purposes, I didn't have blood pressure. They stuck a tube in my neck that went straight to my heart, held it in place with 2 stitches (also in my neck), stuck in a catheter, and poked me with some of the biggest needles I've ever seen (and this coming from someone, who at some point or other, has had most of her body pierced). Now all this, combined with being absolutely terrified would be enough, but just to make it a little more fun, all of the above procedures were done without a drop of freezing! Not. A. Drop. Cause everything didn't hurt enough, right? Anyway, I saw about 5 doctors, had 2 CT scans, more people than I ever dreamed possible took a look at my who who, and by 5 I was in surgery. Before they put me out, they did some other incredibly painful things, such as stick a needle into the artery in my wrist (I still have bruises from where he was trying to keep my arm still). The actual surgery itself took less than an hour, which was really good, because (and of course I didn't know this at the time) the more time it took, the more damage the strep had done. After recovery, they took me up to ICU, where they stuck a tube down my throat and hooked me up to a respirator, then tied my arms down so I couldn't pull it out. Thursday they took me off the respirator and put me on the bipap machine, which forces air into your lungs through a mask strapped very tightly to your face and head. Friday they moved me to HAU (high acuity unit). Which is basically the same thing as ICU, except you can't be on a respirator. Turns out my ingrown hair had somehow (I blame the tiny people at the preschool I was doing my practicum at, lol) become infected with strep A (yes folks, that is the flesh eating strain!). I only remember little snippets before Saturday (and even that's fuzzy), and by that time, I had developed pneumonia. When I was in the trauma unit, they I.V.ed in about 7 liters of fluid to try to flush the infection from my tissues, so I was really, really, swollen. So swollen in fact, that the skin on my hands and feet started (and is still) peeling off because it got stretched out so much. All in all I was in the hospital for about 2 weeks, acquired an incision that's about 7" long, 1" deep, and 1" wide (that they couldn't sew up, because if there's any lingering infection it would be trapped), had to learn how to breathe again, and will be a resident of my mothers couch for at least another 2 weeks. My kidneys recovered really well, which is wonderful! No dialysis for me!! There is a fair amount of pain involved, some rather serious drugs, but I'm alive!! Which is very literally amazing, it could have gone either way. They also informed me that if I hadent of come in right when I did, it would have been game over. So yay!!! I'm alive!!! And have decided to go amazon, because if you think a razor is even coming close to my who who ever again, your crazy!!

Tuesday 19 June 2012

Hearts and bones and things that break...

Charlie Sheen said "the best way to not get your heart broken, is to pretend you don't have one." I don't buy it. I have a heart. A big one. It gets broken often. And even after all the crap, I'd rather have a heart that is capable of love that gets broken from time to time, than one that is made of stone. I put myself out there, I trust, I hope, I wish, I jump in with both feet, I give it my all, I give my heart to those I feel deserve it, and one day I know I will give it to one who will not throw it away. One who will not break it. One who will understand what it takes to give it, and will give theirs back in return. Sometimes I wonder how wide the line is between strong and jaded. Cutting yourself off is just all to easy. But when does it end? When do you find it? I don't need a knight in shining armor, just a nice man in blue jeans, who can occasionally rescue me from wilder beasts. That's all. But where is the elusive Mr. Right? Where does he reside? Where would I even begin to look for him? Maybe it's just not the right time. Maybe it is only when I have given up the search that I will find my match. Who knows. All I know is I'm tired. I'm tired of looking. I'm tired of perpetually feeling like crap. I have no idea what to do to get out of this funk I have so masterfully gotten myself into. It's not even about a person, or lack there of, it's me. I'm the one who's broken, and unlike everything else, every other situation, I can't fix this. I can't make myself feel better. It doesn't matter what I do. I can't smoke it away, drink it away, eat it away, sleep it away, talk it away, fuck it away, it just never goes away. Never gets better. The pills, the therapy, the daily pushing of myself out of my comfort zone, the trying new things, the going new places, nothing. Nothing works. I'm broke, I'm so fucking tired I could cry, I can't even see the light from hope. I don't quit, ever, but I'm getting close to feeling that I'm out of options, and I'm wondering what the point is. What is the point of an existence that is basically wasting space? I'm simply asking, what is the fucking point?? It either needs to end, or it needs to get better, but either way, something's gotta give

Monday 4 June 2012

When I grow up....

When we are small, we often get asked, "what do you want to be when you grow up?" My answer was always "mermaid!" I thought this was a great life choice, swimming around all day, singing my mermaid songs, playing with my fishey friends. Until one day, after spending all day in the pool, my father very ernistly told me I had the wrong parents. Now from here, there's many directions we can go. We could examine the "wrong parents" comment, for which I would agree, insofar as yes, I definitely did have one wrong parent. For a plethora of reasons, including but not limited to his lack of mer heritage. It has taken me a very long time to forgive his rather harsh way of teaching life lessons. I have forgiven, for the most part, but unfortunately, I will never forget. I will never forget living in constant fear. I will never forget the corporal punishment delivered for falling off my bike. I will never forget hiding at the top of the closet with the door closed, curled up on a stack of blankets, holding my breath, and trying for the life of me to figure out what exactly it was that I had done to deserve what I knew was coming. My point in all this is, I think that as I was growing my mind was so focused on survival that it just didn't have time to worry about what I was going to be when I got big. Which brings me to this constant, nagging, overwhelming feeling, of being completely, totally, and utterly lost. Other than a mermaid, there was nothing that I wanted to be. Not a fireman, policeman, teacher, ballerina, doctor, lawyer, tightrope walker, lion tamer, tile setter, gardener, architect, chef, marine biologist. Nothing. Mermaid was it. And unless I start sprouting fins and acquire a seashell bra pretty quick, I'm going to have to come up with another course of action. But what will I do? How will I do it? Who, but me, can answer this question? I recognize I'm the master of my domain, designer of my destiny, queen of my castle, but I'm haveing a seriously hard time figuring out which direction my vocational compass is pointing. I need a direction, a path, a goal, but right now it feels like I'm stuck in the middle of the Bermuda triangle, walking around in circles. It's irritating, it's so far beyond frustrating that the light from constellation frustration will take about a billion years to reach earth. I'm sure the fact that I'm turning 30 this year isn't helping, fear of turning into a pumpkin and all that... So what's a girl to do? I guess I just thought I'd have my shit together by now, marriage, babies, career, house, etc., but alas, I am lost. If only my parents had fins...

Saturday 2 June 2012


We are taught from a very young age, that if something hurts, or is uncomfortable, that it is good for you. In my opinion, this is simply not the case. For instance, bladder infections hurt, they're not good for you. Stubbing your toe hurts,that's not good for you. Missing someone hurts, that's not good for you. Burning yourself on the oven hurts, that's not good for you. Diving into an empty pool and landing on your head hurts, and that's definitely not good for you! I could go on, but I think you get the point. Where in our history did we decide that if something sucks it's for your benefit? "What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger", "no pain, no gain", "your never given more than you can handle", "the truth hurts", " love hurts", "life is hard", "no one said it was going to be easy", and on, and on, and on... Lies! I am tired of constantly waiting for the "other shoe to drop", being weary of things that are "too good to be true", not "counting my chickens before they're hatched.". I want to count my chickens damnit! I want something to go well without the constant black cloud of impending doom. I want love at first sight, eternal bliss, and no more penis shots on dating sights! I really don't think I'm asking for all that much. I'm harboring no delusions that things are going to be hunky dory everyday, for all time. I understand things (love, life, etc.) take work. It's not the work part I have problems with, it's the constant nagging from my subconscious that if it's not hard enough it's not worth it. I'm not even going to get started on the damage fairy tales cause, or romantic comedies for that matter, but clearly this "life is shit" notion is something that the human race has been struggling with for millennia. I think it's the love part that sends things sideways. This whole sex for recreation vs. procreatin thing. Don't get me wrong, I'm a huge proponent of sex for recreation, but I'm not gonna lie, sometimes I think the animal kingdom is onto something. Most notably when it comes to online dating. Though I suppose the cock shots do reference the mating rituals of animals, and times long past. I propose we change our way to thinking, we shift from "life is suffering," to "life is good." I want my happy ending, I long to wake up beside my true love, everyday, for the rest of my life. I say thumbs down to constant struggle, and bring on the kittens and daffodils!

Monday 28 May 2012

The greatest thing a friend has ever done for you...

One of my absolute bestest best friends lives and teaches English in China. I know she's out living her life and learning new things, but everyday I miss her just a little bit more than I did the day before. We've had some great times together me and her...travels, adventures, laughs, tears, and some very interesting food (FYI, if anyone asks you if you want to try fermented bean paste sushi, just say NO!), but the most personal thing we have ever shared, is my undies. You see, she's rather freckely, and has spent many an hour in the sun, so when one of her moles changed shape, it was time to go to the doctor. She needed a biopsy, but before the actuall cutting could commence, he had to check the rest of her to see if there was anything else that needed to go. Now, this is the thing, her momma was not a fan of undies, and as she grew, she inherited her mommas dislike of them herself, which is why when the doctor said "ok, now, just strip down to your bra and panties and get on the table, and I'll be right back to check you over" we realized we had a problem. Truth be told the doctor was a little odd, and there was NO way she was getting on that table naked! So, when he left, she started to panic. And this is when I had my most brilliant idea, "do you want mine?" I asked. "ummmm....yes please" she said, and thus began the great undie caper of 2009. First you must understand the gravity of the situation, her mom passed away from cancer, her dad has cancer, she has had cancerous spots before, and right then she was preparing to have two inches of tissue removed from her arm. What you must also understand is the logistics of two women removing their pants, tossing undies across he room, one getting on a table while the other puts her pants back on, and both regaining their composure and acting like nothing ever happened amid fits of giggles, in about 2 minutes. Never in my life had I seen a doctor leave and return so promptly! As you can imagine this truly cemented our friendship. Which is why when she emailed me to tell me about her grade 12 English assignment, I couldn't hold back the tears. The assignment was, "what is the greatest thing a friend has ever done for you?", and of course they needed an example. I would have loved to be there to see the faces and hear the stifled laughter of the students as she retold our story! We have shared many experiences, but this one by far, demonstrates the true extent of love and friendship!