Saturday, August 16, 2014

Going Back to School

You didn't expect another post so soon now, did you?

Going back to school has terrified me for a long time. I don't know what part about it does -- except for all of it. I'm afraid to move in. I'm afraid to meet my new roommates. I'm afraid to start school. I'm afraid to sit in class. I'm afraid to do labs. I'm afraid to do homework.... Basically... I'm afraid.

And yet tomorrow I move into my new home with three girls I have yet to meet.

Why does it scare me? I don't know. It might have something to do with how I left early last time. But then again, maybe not. I know I can always take a medical withdraw if I get too sick. Yet, that does not seem to comfort me.

I feel like I should say more, but I don't know what else to say. How do you feel about going back to school?

Friday, August 15, 2014

Parents and Mental Illness

Sigh. Blogger has once again eaten a post. I'm sure I saved it.

First of all, Storm, my emotional support kitty has been sick. I thought she was better, but then my friend and I witnessed her peeing on my stuff again. So it seems like she's still sick, unfortunately.

So, as I mentioned in my last post, my parents are no longer quite so in the dark about my conditions. Are they still in the dark? Yes, very much so, but not as much.

I get a few of my medications through patient assistance programs. These programs are when the drug companies send free brand name medication to your doctor when you have under a certain income and don't have insurance. That's right, I'm on multiple medications with no insurance. How is that related to what I just said? Well, I've been home a long time. Which means I need my medications. Which are particularly difficult to get when your doctor is 100 miles away. So my doctor stuck my drugs in an envelope and mailed them. Twice.

The first time my mom saw the package and asked "What boy in Columbia is sending you pills?" I somehow got out of that one by not really answering. The second time, about a week later, he sent me another envelope filled with pills. And my mom asks me again, "What boy in Columbia is sending you pills?" I tried again to get out of it, but with no success. I asked, "Would it make a difference if it was my doctor?" She basically said no. I thought her knowing it wasn't birth control would make it better. It apparently made it worse.

They then lulled me into a false sense of security by not bringing it up for several weeks. I thought that maybe my parents didn't think it was a big deal. Until they took me out to lunch in Columbia. They started out by telling me that I am slow on the medication. My mom has even said she's worried about me driving at all on them (I don't drive anyways). However, they don't even know when I started taking the meds. They think I've been slow this summer when I've been on the medications since December 2012. I have been on several different kinds, sure. Maybe I just don't want to be slow, but I don't understand how it can be my meds.

Secondly, my mom really likes to ask really awkward questions that either I can't or don't want to answer including: "Why didn't the last one work?" "How is this one helping you?" and "What were you feeling before?" I made the mistake of telling her I had tried one before and it didn't work. Although, of course, as you know, there have been more than one.

We also had other conversations including:
Mom: What do you think is causing this?
Me: I don't know.
Dad: Do you think it's a chemical imbalance?
Me: Yeah....
Mom: Why is that what you think?
Me: I don't know.
Mom: No really, who told you that's what it was?
Me: No one. It just is.

This is one that they have not dropped. They keep asking me if x told me it was a chemical imbalance. Including the classes I'm taking at school. See, they think it's all college's fault that I'm this way. Well, that's what my mom thinks. My dad thinks I'm in a funk. He told me all I needed was to travel for three months, and I'd be better. I guess they're both waiting for me to snap out of it. But blame it all on college. At least this way I don't have to deal with them knowing how bad I was before college. I'd rather them not know I was crying six to eight hours a night, under their roof, and they never noticed. I'd rather them not know a lot of things.

Mom: One of my friends said medication just took the edge off, is that what you think?
Me: Yeah....
Mom: But what does that mean???
Me: What?
Mom: When she told me that I didn't know what it meant and I still don't know!!!

I'm not sure either of them really know what depression is. And I'm pretty sure I'd rather let them think I'm in a funk than know how bad my life really was for a very long time.

And then things like this happen, in the library my mom found a book called Beating the Blues and tried to give it to me. Said, "Look! It's about," whispers, "depression." I know she's just trying to help, but seriously.

Also, another thing she said, in front of my horrified friend, "We just want the real you back."

What is this real me that she's talking about? Last summer when the real me couldn't get out of bed and was in constant indescribable pain? The real me who cried for countless hours in the dark because she didn't realize the lights were off? The real me who was peed on by a cat and didn't care or move? The real me who didn't remember to eat unless prompted? I don't know what real me she's talking about. I am better now than I have ever been in my whole life.

As if that isn't subtle enough my dad on our vacation said "well we're open to therapy, but not psychiatrists." And then when my baby sister said "doesn't she have one?" and asked what the difference was between them and therapists he said "they prescribe medicine that people may or may not need." Also, I said something about having a type of disability, which allows me to have an emotional support animal. He got all serious an said we needed to talk. As in don't think that or else.... Talk about not being supportive.

Also, there was another time when my mom was telling me about someone she knew who was depressed. She said, "she's in the same place she was a few years ago. And it's just sooo sad." Like it was the worst thing ever. How do I explain that's just how I am? That my condition is chronic - I don't get breaks? She just thinks everything is so surprising and tragic. One time my sister mentioned she had insomnia and my mom said with absolute utter horror, "you have INSOMNIA!?!?" Like it was the worst thing ever. Insomnia. I had insomnia my whole life up until I started taking medication.

This is a big part of why I didn't want to disclose to my parents my mental illness. Because they just don't understand. I know parental support is important for a lot of people. But, honestly, I'd rather them not know anything.

How have the people in your life supported or not supported big choices you've made?

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Preparing for Busch Gardens

This week I'm going to Busch Gardens in Williamsburg. I'll post pictures later if I remember to take any. Usually I don't do much sightseeing. Also, I'd rather be living in the moment and look around than take a bunch of pictures. But I'll try to remember. I also prefer to go on rides with my baby sister while my parents think we're going to die. I think roller coasters are safer than driving, but they don't agree. Last time we went to Busch Gardens (in Tampa) my dad got a huge collection of pictures of animal butts. For some reason that was the only angle he could take. Animals kept turning around every time he held up the camera. My pictures may end up being just that as well.

I'm a little nervous about hiding/taking my medication while we're on vacation. It's always worked before, but it still worries me. Although, I guess, I don't have to be that secretive about it anymore since my parents are no longer quite in the dark. I wish they still were. More on that later. But they only think I'm on one medication - when I'm actually on five.

Griffon First Drop.jpg
looking forward to this one
Image credit: Wikipedia

In other news, I'm in a really good mood today. I'm not quite sure why that is, but I'll take it. It might be because I just started zolpidem (Ambien), and it's helping me get the right type of sleep, even though it takes longer than it should to kick in. Or it might be my newish antidepressant kicking in. I'm probably being too optimistic, maybe it's just a good day. Whatever it is, I'm not complaining!

Monday, June 30, 2014

Late Night Cooking: Pita Chips

The other night I decided I wanted something to eat. Typical night, right? Something that did not need very many ingredients, including butter. Because when it's been a very long time since you've gone to the store, you don't have many things. Anyways, I decided I wanted pita chips. Because what could be easier?

I assumed I had all the ingredients. After all flour, water, salt, what more would you need for a flat bread? Well, apparently pita bread is not flat. Pita bread rises. Which means it needs yeast. Something I do not have on hand at my apartment. However, I did not give up. I looked up recipes for pita bread without yeast and struck gold. According to two recipes that I found, you don't need yeast to make pita bread! After several more hours of debating I decided I would just go for it.

I used a recipe I found on a blog with pictures:
Three cups of flour
One teaspoon of salt
One cup of water
A few teaspoons of oil (optional)

Mix, let sit, and fry. Easy.

Well, whoever wrote that blog post must have very different luck cooking than I do. If you remember from two previous posts Cooking Fails and Cooking Fails Part Two I don't always have the best luck in the kitchen. This time was no different.

I mixed the flour and salt. I then added the water. Now, last time I checked (the other day) one cup of water is not enough water to dampen three cups of flour. Not even a little bit. So I added a little more water. And a little more. And then a bit more after that. Much more than one cup. But just enough to make a dough. Then I threw in some unmeasured amount of oil. At this point I realized there's no point even looking at the recipe, I'm flying in the dark. By now it's about 11:30, so, not too late, but late enough. And I crept out into the kitchen to fry the dough. Oh, yeah, I forgot to mention. I wasn't even in the kitchen to begin with. I didn't want to bother my studying roommate who was in the living room, so I was trying to stay extra quiet for her.

I flattened out the dough. No problems there. I didn't even need flour. Because I had only just made a dough the flour water ratio wasn't very sticky. And fried it in the pan. I was afraid my roommate was going to look over and judge me for frying some sort of dough mixture at 11:30 at night, but she was too busy studying to care. I took it out and put the next one in. As soon as it was cool enough to bite into, actually a bit too soon for that, my mouth is still burnt, I took a huge bite. PITA. IT TASTED LIKE PITA. I was very excited. And continued to fry up dough.

By the time I got to the second one I realized that I had not actually ever been hungry. Just bored and wanting to eat. But, of course, I go for it anyways. It soooorta tasted like pita. I recognized the taste as closer to the homemade tortillas my older sister and I used to make on our tortilla maker. At this point I'm slightly less excited about frying them all up. However, I ate the second "pita" and continued frying. The third "pita" did not taste good. Not even a little bit good. It had no redeeming qualities. I kept frying. Sooner, well, actually later, I had fried all of the disgusting dough. I had still not gotten one glance from my roommate. (sound familiar?) I took it into my room and tried another one. Blargh. Gross.

The next day I threw them all away. Realizing, that I don't really like pita much anyways.