I used to care… now I take a pill for that ;)

A little helper…

I recently saw this slogan on a t-shirt, and it made me laugh. And then I found this image >>

It’s kind of how I’m feeling, these days. Work is a roller-coaster with all the changes going on. One minute, I’ve got a promotion… the next, I might be re-assigned to my old work, but I don’t know yet for sure… the next, people are talking trash about me behind my back… the next, they’re all nice and friendly and how-can-I-help-you.

Geez. What a monumental waste of time. I mean, I’ve got to make a living. Everybody’s got to make a living. But doing the whole political dance and song just irritates the living crap out of me.

So, I’m not going to bother. People at work are understandably anxious, upset, etc. I have too much work to do, to get into that. Life goes on. Things change. If someone can decide what the hell they want to happen, and then let me know, that will be great.

I seriously need a pill for this stuff. Because it’s taking a toll on my home life. I have been extremely difficult to live with, for the past few days — meltdowns coming out of nowhere — blindside — and a whole lot of anxiety all around, because of things in the past that seem like they’re happening all over again.

God, what a pain in the ass this TBI business is. I used to be better at this, but in the past years, I’ve become stupidly erratic with this stuff, and I find myself blowing up over stupid things that shouldn’t even phase me. If I could just have some peace… but all around me, I have to constantly parse out the messages and communications and signals from anxious, nervous, frightened people who are doing and saying some very unpredictable things. Sure, I can offer them some reassurance, and they can offer me good information. But it takes a lot of energy. And that drains me. I know I’m supposed to have “peace from within”… But all the extra activity demands more of my energy and attention, and it makes me nuts. It sucks the life out of what I want to be doing, and it just depletes me, so I have even less resources available for my loved ones. My moods are all over the place, my anxiety and temper has been spiking, and I am having trouble sleeping.

Others have this, I know — TBI or not — yet with me it gets so amplified, so exaggerated, and it also brings up a lot of old “stuff” about all the changes that put me over the edge, when I was first grappling with the TBI I had in 2004. That was brutal. Terrible. Life-threatening. And there’s still the residue of that old biochemical crap that’s rattlin’ ’round in my nervous system.

Joy.

If only a pill could make it all go away… but I know it can’t and it won’t. Plus, TBI makes me extremely sensitive to pharmaceuticals, so even if there were a pill for this, I probably couldn’t take it without it completely knocking me for a loop, which is never good.

Anyway, so it goes. Life goes on. Changes happen. The main thing is that I keep calm and centered and don’t lose it over stupid sh*t… and that I don’t project and make all sorts of scenarios up in my mind, which is the most dangerous thing of all. Because then I end up reacting to all sorts of things that never will happen, and I waste a ton of energy on stuff that should not even be on my radar.

The least (and most) I can do is just keep steady and only think about the things that actually ARE happening. Right here, right now, right in front of me. To do anything else, would be punishing myself unnecessarily. And there’s no point in that. After all, when I punish myself, it’s not only me who suffers — it’s everyone around me who has to deal with a lunatic who’s unbalanced themself over nothing much at all.

Ah well. So it goes.

Onward.

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Learning to do it anyway

Sometimes it feels like the weight of the world…

Woke up this morning feeling sick – headache, sick on my stomach, foggy… Going back to work tomorrow probably isn’t helping any, but life goes on. There it is.

I’m pretty much in the Emotions/Moods “section” of those 84 ways TBI can make your life really interesting

Emotions/Moods

8. Agitated, can’t settle down – I’m all wound up and can’t seem to get myself to chill to get to bed at a decent hour each night. I’m way agitated, and fidgety and am having trouble focusing in to get shit done.
9. Angerrrrrr!!! – I’m pissed off. At work. At my spouse. At myself. I’m just angry. It’s driving me — it’s driving me crazy.
10. Anxiety – Feeling vague fear, worry, anticipation of doom – Yeah, when I go back to work tomorrow, I have the feeling that I’m going to be so totally screwed by my workload and the “lost week+” that I’ve had away. Not that it’s any different than it’s been for the past year or so, but now the sense of doom is really coming in.
11. Depression, feeling down – My mood has actually been pretty good… but I have to really fight back the depression. It sets in quickly if I don’t stay on it.
12. Excitability! – I get all worked up over stuff, then I come back to it later and I can’t see what all the excitement was about. The worst thing about the excitability is that it distracts me and takes me off-course, so it takes me longer to get where I’m going.
13. Everything feels like an effort – Yeah, pretty much. It feels like everything is a massive effort, and I can’t figure out where to start.
14. Feeling unsure of yourself – Yeah, pretty much all the time, these days. I know better (rationally) and I fight it back, but that feeling is always there… like I never know what’s going to come out of my mouth or what I’m going to do next. Sometimes I get it right, sometimes I don’t, but I’m never 100% sure what’s going to happen.
15. Feelings of dread – Yeah, that. Dread and anxiety. Like I just can’t deal with sh*t.
16. Feeling like you’re observing yourself from afar – This is a weird one, because it’s really like that. It’s like I’m standing at a distance and watching myself do and say things that don’t make any sense to me.
17. Feelings of well-being – On and off. It’s not all bad, all the time. Sometimes I have these sudden rushes of feeling really good, really solid, really sound. It’s a nice break.
18. Feeling guilty – Guilty over what I’ve done and what I haven’t done… what I should have done, what I forgot to do.
19. Feeling hostile towards others – Yeah, this is a tough one. I’m not feeling that great today, and we have a friend staying over, and I have to watch myself to not come across as hostile and aggressive, because they’re pretty sensitive and have a hard time making and keeping friends, as it is. My hostility has nothing to do with them, but they could easily become a target, if I don’t manage this.
20. Impatience – Yeah – what’s taking everything so long?
21. Irritability – Like the hostility, I’ve gotta keep a handle on this. Others shouldn’t have to pay for my issues. It has nothing to do with them.
22. No desire to talk or  move – This one set in when I woke up, and it’s still there. The antidote? Get the hell up and do something. Anything. Just move, goddammit.
23. Feeling lonely – Yeah. That. The consolation I get is that I’m not alone in feeling lonely. Plenty of people do. I also need to focus on the fact of what I’ve got in common with others, and that helps.
24. Nervousness – Nervous about work, nervous about money, nervous about life. Nervous.
25. Feelings of panic – On and off. This is much less extreme than it was several years ago. I’ve learned how to relax. I’ve learned how to recognize the signs that I’m just panicking, and it has nothing to do with actual reality. Breathing helps.
26. Rapid mood swings – Yeah, gotta watch that. I’m sick and tired today, so I know I’m more susceptible.
27. Restlessness – I want to run, I want to walk, I want to jump in the car and drive away. I want to go out and pick a fight. Not my best ideas… and I know it’s just the fatigue, the fogginess, the feeling of being “off” that’s doing this. Adrenaline and novelty blocks out all the distracting what-not-ness that’s swirling in my head. Surely, doing something extreme will take my mind off it. Well, sure – but at what cost?
28. Tearfulness, crying spells – Not so far, which is good. A few days ago, when I was feeling really sick, I had this. Thankfully it passed. Of all the TBI issues that come up, the tearfulness is the worst for me.
29. Feeling tense – Yeah. That. Like I’m wound so tight, I’m either going to snap, or I’m going to shoot straight to the moon. Tense. Really Tense. Black Flag Tense.
30. Feeling vague longing/yearning – Absolutely – for something I want and need, but can’t quite put my finger on. I used to have an antidote for this: daily meditation and breathing. Then I got sick of it and stopped doing it, because I just wanted to get on with my days with out having a lot of ritual and sh*t to do, first thing in the morning.

And as a result of these things, I’m also grappling with the follwing:

Day-to-Day Activities
31. Being overly busy (more than usual) – I’ve got all this stuff I want to do, and it’s piling up. I’m making myself crazy with it.
32. Feeling like you can’t get moving, you’re stuck – And under this pile of stuff, there I am, pinned down and feeling like I can’t move.
33. Feeling like you can’t get anything done – It’s just a feeling, I know, but that’s how I feel right now — nothing is moving, I can’t get anything accomplished.

Geeze. Enough of this. Yeah, things aren’t great right now, but once I get moving, I’m sure they’ll loosen up. That’s the thing that I’ve had to learn, over and over again. I can’t start from where I want to be (feeling great and having a lot of stuff done). I need to start from where I am — even if it’s sick and tired and foggy and aggressive and a bit ragged around the edges.

Gotta get out of my head and find something to really focus on. Just gotta. I’ve got to get my mind off this headache, this nausea, this fogginess, and all the above-mentioned crap. I’ve got to just get moving and do what needs to be done today. I do have things I need to take care of, and I just need to do them. I’ve had two days to recover and recoup, and that’s been good. Now I need to kick it again and get a move on. No matter how I feel, just do what needs to be done, and then enjoy having done it.

Yeah, it’s turning out to be a beautiful day, so I can get some work done in the yard and hang out with this friend. I will need to watch myself today, to make sure I’m not all edgy around them, so I don’t chase them off the way I have chased off many other people. I just need to keep cool, keep focused on what needs to get done, and do it.

And then sleep this afternoon. Get some rest. And get ready to go back to everyday normal life. Things will take care of themselves, if I’m just honest with myself and keep an eye on myself. This is not rocket science, it’s just life. Everybody has to contend with this, TBI or no. So deal with it, I shall.

After all, it is a beautiful day.

Tired and rushed and paying the price

Well, it happened again. Or rather, I set myself up again. I was supposed to have the afternoon off work yesterday and take some time to just enjoy myself. But I had been putting in long hours all week, under very stressful conditions, and by the time noon on Friday came around, I was fried. I had also not planned properly, and my timing was off, the plans didn’t turn out like I had hoped, and the net result was that instead of spending a relaxing afternoon, I spent the afternoon rushing around (in vain) and then I spent the evening stuck in a meltdown cycle that really tore the sh*t out of a lot of work I’ve done to patch things up with my spouse.

No wonder they don’t like spending time with me alone.

It was pretty bad, and it all carried through into this morning, when there was more fireworks (not the good kind) and more meltdowns.

Not good.

Now I’m on my own for the afternoon, so I’m going to bed – to sleep. I’m on my own all evening, and I’m going to take it easy. Relax. Throw a steak on the grill and cook up some kabobs. I just need a break, some time away, without needing to DO anything, without needing to rush. I’m fried. I need to sleep. I haven’t been sleeping, and it shows. For all those times when I’ve felt like I was doing great and was living large over the past week or so, I hit a wall and I’m the one with the cracks.

Oh screw it. Shower. Then bed. Enough.