So, let's start with Happy New Year. I realise it has now been ten years since I started this blog and although I don't do much on it now I am happy to keep it limping along. It's kind of a good record of things these days.
Christmas came and went and it was the first time I haven't taken photos or really given a shit. That's because I experienced a major depressed episode which saw me put on anti depressants (which had to be increased). This had followed a four week hypomanic phase which really floored me. I was disruptive at work (if highly amusing), spent money I should not have, talked non stop and was at one stage incapable of holding a decent conversation due to the amount of information coming into my head. One night I was lying in bed and the pressure and noise in my head was very, very unsettling.
All this was made worse by my not listening to suggestions from the psych as to how to bring the up phase down sooner. I told him I liked being like that, it felt good and he was a party pooper. I also laughed at what he said, a lot. Now when I look back I just think "who was that woman?".
Anyway, on Christmas day I was so incredibly blah it was awful. I managed to cook dinner but had to get K to help out during the day and then when my brother came around he took over and finished off the cooking. Interestingly enough the food was possibly the best it has every been as I had to do a very thorough list otherwise I could not get it all done. Plus my brother is a good cook.
Now the depression is lifting and I can feel things changing a bit. It's just all ups and downs for now. I've had to agree with the psych to be more medicine compliant otherwise this is just going to get worse. Over the past two years I have only ever taken just enough mood stabilisers so that I can keep the "edge" but unfortunately the ups are every six to eight weeks and the downs are shit.
All the above aside though, I am really good because I know nothing lasts for every as far as these moods go and I choose to be okay with them (annoying as they can be). In my own self I just see this all as something that needs constant tweaking as Bipolar is really a moving target. I am now happy to go with the flow and not try to continue to think in my head I can make it go away through sheer will. Plus I do need to accept I cannot let myself be seduced by the highs which in turn makes me not so proactive bringing them to a more manageable state. In the past they would only have lasted a week or so. To have them going for weeks is just counter productive to my work and my life in general.
Last night my son went out to a New Year's Eve party at a friends house. About 100 kids were there all drinking. K picked him up about 1.30 am and I have to say that S was pretty drunk. He was loud and talking a lot. But he had a great time and woke up fresh as a daisy this morning. Oh, wait, he woke up after lunch. In fact, on his holidays he has been waking up after lunch all the time. He needs to get a job.
He finished high school this year and passed his exams and is now waiting to see if he has been accepted into University. His aim is to do two years of Information Technology and then move to two years of Software Engineering. I'm crossing fingers for him.
I am having a break from work until the 11th January. Apart from two Tuesdays where I go in and do payroll. I really need some reprieve at the moment from just day to day stuff. Apart from the Christmas stuff all I have done is slept in ('cos my sleep is crappy), lounged around reading and taken my beautiful Mr Benny for big walks. Just taking it easy.
My niece moved out at the beginning of December after three years of living with us. She moved in to a lovely old Art Deco flat with her boyfriend and is very happy. In the 18 years S has been around my niece has lived with us for eight of them on and off. I said to her that if she comes back it will be as a carer for K and I in our old age. With her bedroom free, S can now set it up as his room for playing Xbox and computer game and for a place to have his friends when they come over. My studio is now all mine again.
Last night K and I to Mr Benny down the the dog beach. It was so busy and Mr B had a great time. When we first got there he lay low like a sheep dog and watched the other dogs. Then he got up and repeated the exercise a few more times. That sheep dog style is so inbred into them. He then ran like the wind to catch other dogs. Naturally he had a swim in the water and came out soaking wet.
When we came home with the salty dog he had to have a shampoo. He was really put out by it and after we finished washing him he shook himself off and rolled in the soil. Of course, what else would a dog do.
I realised how lean he is once his fur was wet. It seems mean but I don't let my dog get fat. The rule of thumb is that I should be able to feel his ribs under a slight layer of fat. He gets a good amount of food but not much extra. Hardly ever any table scraps. It's not good for dogs to get human food and not good for them to be overweight. Mr B is relying on me to do the right thing by him.
Wish I took the same amount of consideration with my own body. I seriously find it so hard to resist chocolate. It would not be a lie to say that at least five days out of seven I eat chocolate. It's usually Fairtrade and organic so that makes it okay, right? Just typing this now makes me ponder what is in the pantry as far as chocolate goes. I've a feeling that only cooking chocolate is left which is not nice.
Lately, I have been letting my dog sleep up the front of the house. Normally he sleeps in the lounge room on a blanket covered sofa. Somehow he worked out that if he came up to our bedroom we said nothing so everynight after about half an hour he comes into our bedroom and sleeps right by my side of the bed. I never thought I would let him do that but there you go, things change.
I have not been drawing as much but that is mainly a time thing and perhaps a motivation thing too. Maybe I am just a bit lazy now and then. It's hard to fit into life everything you want to do.
Below is the Christmas card design I sent out to people.
I was very happy with the outcome. Everyone has their own look and a strange sort of relationship with each other. Though it is not joyful in the usual Christmassy way I think it sums up how people sometimes feel about Christmas. Or maybe how I felt about it last year!
Later on today I expect to do a nice big walk with Mr Benny. The weather, which has been just stinking hot, has settled down to a nice temperature. At least I can go outside now. Yesterday I went down to the shops in something like 38 celsius heat and it was suffocatingly hot. I made a decision to park the car under the shade which meant a longer walk to the supermarket. Of course, it meant a long walk back with the sun beating down on me and both arms aching from carrying heavy shopping bags. So either way there was not a chance of avoiding being a sweaty thing.
But for now I am in the studio and tidying up a bit before I think about what my next project is. Whatever I start I hope I can finish. There are so many unfinished things in here it is a bit overwhelming. Too many ideas, not enough time.
May everyone have a safe a peaceful 2016.