Wednesday, June 26, 2013

God, Jesus, and an analysis

Note: If you do not like posts about God, religion, and/or spirituality, you are free to leave this page and never return. I will not apologize for my posts on these matters, nor for my exploration of these subjects, or even anything I might say that might cause a devout Christian (for example) to fear for my soul. No one need fear for my soul. I trust in God and His goodness, and He knows that I am working through spirituality and the Bible right now, and how difficult this is for me. He knows I am doing my best, and that is enough. Also remember: "Judge not lest ye be judged."

In a much-cited passage from Mere Christianity, Lewis challenged the view that Jesus, although a great moral teacher, was not God. He argued that Jesus made several implicit claims to divinity, which would logically exclude this:
"I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: 'I'm ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don't accept his claim to be God.' That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic – on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg – or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronising nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to."

At first I was not understanding this argument at all; I thought, as is written below in C.S. Lewis' Wikipedia page (the source for this quote) among the criticism section, that such an argument was simply illogical. Then I said, as I so often say lately, "Well, hold on a minute and let me really think about this." And so I did. Aided with this particular quote from the Wikipedia article at the bottom of this section, which made me able to reconstruct the nature of how I was viewing this quote:

Lewis used a similar argument in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, when Digory Kirke advises the young heroes that their sister's claims of a magical world must logically be taken as either lies, madness, or truth.

I have started to read the Bible, and it is very true that Jesus himself claimed to be God. I have the red-letter version, so all the words Jesus himself said are in red, and at least three times in Matthew alone, he says something to the equivalent of "I am God". He says this as though it is a fact. I believe that this, not his preachings, not his parables, not anything else, is what C.S. Lewis is talking about in the paragraph he wrote.

Because Jesus did not simply claim he was a great moral teacher, or even a prophet. No; he specifically and undeniably stated that he was God himself. So considering this claim, it is, in fact, very logical that we must either, logically speaking, take his claims, and therefore all his teachings, as either lies, madness, or truth.

There is, as always, a possibility that it is a lie. Perhaps Jesus did not actually say these words; perhaps his apostles wrote it this way, instead, because they wanted to believe that he was the one true savior. However, the fact that they have appeared with such frequency in simply the first book (which I'm not even close to finished reading) makes me doubt that he did not say it. I would have to read more of the Bible to be sure of this. You can bet that I am intending to continue my Bible readings; in fact, I plan to read the whole of the New Testament, and then hopefully go back to some of the Old Testament, with my reading of the New Testament and how Jesus taught us differences in the nature of God between OT and NT as a reference.

Which is another part of the equation for me. I believe in God as is conceptualized in Christianity, for the most part. I do not believe in the hideously angry, vengeful, even spiteful God of the Old Testament. But Jesus' preachings are far more accepting and kind, on the whole, although he still makes references to a vengeful God once in awhile. This is something I will have to wrestle with on my own, since it contradicts my idea of a loving God who, rather than being vengeful when we "disobey" Him or do not see Him, gets sad and hopes that we will find our faith and eventually comes to Him. I guess I see God as more like me than as someone who always wants to get revenge on people who do wrong.

Perhaps I should not be placing my own human values on a deity; I don't know that either, not yet. I don't even know if it's fully that I'm placing human values on a deity, because most humans do have violent and vengeful instincts alike, and I may be unusual in that my instincts for these things are very low. I do know that God understands I'm in dilemma, and I believe in His patience for me as much as I believe that I need to be patient and let Him do His work within me. He has been waiting for many, many, many years for me to figure out that He is there. I know it will be okay if I have to spend months, even years, working out what all this other stuff means to me, because He knows that I am trying my very best, and being diligent and faithful as I do it.

But I guess the point is that Jesus has greatly influenced the way Christians view God, and, therefore, how I view God. How could he do that if his preachings were a lie? Because the more I read, the more I find that agrees with my own views, although obviously some of it does not agree. It occurs to me that maybe I should mark these passages somehow for further study. As I read earlier today on a website (not an exact quote), you can't really just take parts of the Bible you like to use them, and then dismiss the parts you don't like. If I believe in God as is conceptualized in the Bible, and if that conceptualization was influenced greatly by Jesus, how can I pick and choose what to believe? It DOES make sense that I have to take the Bible as a whole, and try to interpret it so that I can understand it, and make peace with the things it says that seem to be against my own beliefs -- or, at the least, believe it and not make peace, at least not for now. I do not know which of these things God intends for me. But I do know that one of my very first feelings, after finding God, was a desperation for physical help, clarity, and resources, and the most obvious answer to "where can I find a resource?" was, for me, the Bible. I must have known even then, on an instinctual level, that my God came from the Christian concept of Him. So it does not seem as though it was any type of coincidence that God led me almost immediately to the Bible.

If that is true, then, God must have wanted me to see the Bible. And why? To dismiss the whole thing as a lie? How can I believe that? Why would God have come to me the way that He did, through CHRISTIAN perspectives of compassion and service in God and Christ, if he did not intend the Bible to be part of this thing? Why would one of my first thoughts have been to read the Bible, to better understand God (this was the exact thought)? I also knew that one of my intentions was to read the story of Jesus and to see if he could fit into my beliefs. Yes, I have always had an open mind, but not to religion. And that's very important. If God could lead someone so unwilling as myself towards a religious text, towards the consideration of religious beliefs, it MUST mean something. I can't believe that it doesn't. God would not do these things for no reason.

So I think this has more or less, for the time being, ruled out the possibility of it being a lie. So then I have only two other options to consider: madness or truth. Was Jesus, as we perceive many self-proclaimed prophets these days to be, mad? Was he insane? Was he some type of schizophrenic who just believed he heard the voice of God in his head? There are a couple of problems with this theory that I already know of, just from my personal scant so-far readings in the Bible. There are times when Jesus literally talked as though he WAS God; that is, God was not just speaking THROUGH him, but actually literally using his body and voice to convey a message. We could say he was, if you like, "possessed" of God. There is a passage in Matthew where this happens and he then turns back into "himself" (the earth-born Jesus) and thanks God for His message. In today's lingo this would be more like Dissociative Identity Disorder: schizophrenics, contrary to popular myth, do not in fact have separate personalities that can take over the body. That is DID, not schizophrenia.

So did Jesus have DID? I wouldn't be inclined to believe that, not from what I have read. Because, aside from this one passage, Jesus spoke not as if he was aware that God had just been in him and it was separate, but as if he WAS God, that he and God were fused together mentally and physically. If that is some kind of DID fusing, it is not a sort I've ever heard of before. I've never read a case study of DID in which one of the alters was God. To believe you are God, or to hear God's voice in your head, is an inherently schizophrenic trait, as we see it in modern secular science.

So if Jesus did not have DID, as it seems to me he did not (keep in mind that I'm not a trained psychologist or psychiatrist), could he have been schizophrenic? As I said, the majority of his behavior is like someone with DID, but it seems not to be DID. With schizophrenia, the first criteria is that you MUST have at least two or more of the following for a minimum of 1 month to be diagnosed: Delusions, hallucinations, disorganized speech, grossly disorganized or catatonic behavior, and 'negative' symptoms, which are symptoms that affect the way one cares about or interacts with the world. So even if we think Jesus was delusional in believing he was God... does he even meet any of the other criteria? Hallucinations? Well, no. He did not hear God in his head, or see God, that I'm aware of. (I could be wrong; I guess I'll find out upon reading of more of the Bible.) But even if he did, does that automatically mean he has schizophrenia? No. I'll get into more detail about that in a bit. Did he have disorganized speech? No, he did not. His speech was perfectly clear and sound. He did not display disorganized or catatonic behavior (his behavior was normal), and he did not have any of the negative symptoms associated with schizophrenia.

Now let's go through some more of the criteria for schizophrenia. Criterion B is:
Social/occupational dysfunction: For a significant portion of the time since the onset of the disturbance, one or more major areas of functioning such as work, interpersonal relations, or self-care are markedly below the level achieved prior to the onset (or when the onset is in childhood or adolescence, failure to achieve expected level of interpersonal, academic, or occupational achievement).
Did he have that? No. Quite the opposite, in fact. He was more than usually successful in his endeavors, and was quite good at interpersonal relationships. He took proper care of himself. The fact that he does not meet the second criterion means he was not schizophrenic.

So he did not have DID, nor did he have schizophrenia, the only two disorders in today's understanding of mental disorders that could possibly explain why he acted as he did. There are other categories for psychosis NOS and this sort of thing, but in order to do that we would have to assume that either he had delusions of grandeur, or was hallucinating about God. These must also have been disabling in the same way mentioned above. They were NOT. So psychosis NOS, by logical conclusion, must also be ruled out.

So for my purposes I have established that the lie possibility has been basically ruled out, and the madness possibility completely ruled out. This then leaves the only other possible option: truth. That Jesus was who he said he was: God. That Jesus truly was the Son of God. I admit that this is a conclusion my mind balks at even now. God, forgive me if this is a sin; if it is, I will pray and repent for it later. You know why my head struggles. Since I was 14 years old I have only given heed to things of this earth; I have only paid attention to where logic and science leads people, in terms of anything regarding faith. I felt that I could not be certain of whether God existed, because who could know? This worked when I did not feel God come to me, come inside me and become a part of me, when I did not feel His joy radiating through me. But I have felt it now, and it has changed my entire life. I know now that God exists. I have felt Him; He is there. And how can I, with this knowledge now given, not follow where He has been leading me this whole time? How can I not follow this conclusion that I have reached here, that Jesus was, in fact, God?

I don't see how I can; and yet my mind still resists. But it is okay. It really is. God knows my mind can be very stubborn (I would call it a fatal flaw of mine) and that I have been used to thinking a certain way about basically all organized religions, including Christianity, for almost all of my thinking life. The tendency to want to run away, to want to disbelieve, isn't going to go away overnight. It didn't even when I finally felt God within me, making Himself known. For days I kept begging Him for signs; every time, every time, I asked for a sign with the full desperation of my being, He gave it to me. He showed me that He truly was there, that I hadn't imagined it, and that it wasn't something that could just be taken away from me, as if His appearance was a cruel joke and yet another thing that failed me. No; He was there. He IS there. He has always been, waiting for me to be open enough, healthy enough, to come to a place where He could make sure that I knew of Him.

I will read my Bible; I will study it diligently. I will study the book written about my God, about Jesus, and I will try to heed what it says. I will consider that everything within it is true. I will consider that, and try to learn about myself and God and Jesus in such a way that I better serve Him because of the readings. That I better open myself as a vessel for God and the good things He wants to do through me. I will learn, and contemplate, and change. And I will do it for God, and, if this conclusion is correct, also for Jesus. And for the Holy Spirit. Because the Trinity... by deduction... is now complete.

I might, in fact, be a Christian.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Another start over...

So I lost weight yet again... relapsing. But I'm trying very hard to get my food more normalized again, and I am hoping that when I do this the weight will take care of itself. I will follow my hunger cues as much as I can, though I'm aware they may be a little wonky at the moment, so I will also be trying to get the best balance I possibly can through meals and/or snacks.

So far, I have:
  • Stopped taking the energy pills (that also suppress appetite) for good. Yaaay!
  • Been having at least one full, well-balanced meal every day. Meaning a proper portion of protein, at least 2 grains, and either a fruit, veg, or dairy. Usually I end up having a dessert also because I'm still hungry (usually a chocolate bar or some cookies). My FAVORITE meal, which I've had at least 3 days in a row and am making again today, is my vegetarian chick'n breast with cheese and salsa on top, and brown rice with cherry sauce (and, yes, I cook it with the butter AND salt recommended!).

    I was wondering why I was craving the chicken and the salsa so particularly badly until I read that the chick'n breast has 80% iron, while the salsa has, for the portion I used, 10% vitamin C. I am currently iron deficient, and vitamin C helps absorb iron, so it makes TOTAL sense. As for the rice... well, I dunno, but apparently it has magnesium like mad? And lots of other nutrients as well. Basically, my body is desperate for nutrition. Well, I shall try to ensure that I receive it.
  • Been eating as much as I am hungry for every day, and I've been having breakfast as well as this supper meal, although my breakfasts are still a little skewed. (Today's was a chocolate bar and Carnation Instant Breakfast mixed in 2% milk... skewy, but I wanted the chocolate so bad, and the CIBs are actually quite tasty and filling, along with being nutritious.)
  • No exercise or anything... I don't feel up to it at this point, anyway. The super severe part of the anemia is gone (I'm not sleeping like 16 hours a day) but I still sleep 10-12, minimum, and I still need that much. Coming off the energy pills may have something to do with that also, although I've been feeling less tired since the first day or two since I stopped them. Fatigue was going to be a withdrawal "symptom" and I was ready for that part. It seems to be passing, which is good albeit expected.
  • I don't seem to want much coffee lately? Don't get that one, but if my body doesn't want it, maybe I shouldn't force it on myself. Most days I don't. Today I might just to feel more alert (I don't feel very alert). But even if I only drink half a cup I'll be happy, and it will still help. Plus I do half and half with flavored creamer and milk, so it's not totally calorie-less or anything. I do still use Splenda, but I probably will regardless of anything else. Same as I'll probably drink diet soda. But I'm trying to take the most important steps first, which are renourishment and feeding my hunger; I can work on the diet soda thing later. I would say it will be one of the last things to go.
So there you have it. Some honesty and some relative positivity. I didn't want to post here while relapsing because... well, you really only think about food and weight and calories and then once in awhile about how miserable you are, so that's not exactly an interesting read. But here I am again, and maybe I'll manage to stick around for awhile, and find something to write about that doesn't involve my disorders -- or, if it does, I will hopefully write about them in a more insightful or positive way, such as the above.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Health is slowly coming

TRIGGER WARNING: NUMBERS (but in a positive way)

Today I am 109.7 lbs. BMI: 19. This puts me, for the first time in about two years, in the healthy weight category for my age and height. And the weirdest thing about it is that I expected to be disgusted when I looked at the scale... but I wasn't. In fact, my actual thought was, "You know, 109.7 is still pretty small." And it IS, in the normal, real world. I can't believe my brain has actually come this far. As little as a month or two ago, such a weight would have caused me to have an absolute breakdown. Today I could look at it and see it as not only a good thing, but STILL SMALL. I don't 100% know how this shift happened, but I'll take it!!!


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Work and fatigue

Ironically, I am too tired to write any more than what I just posted as my FB status. It pretty much summarizes everything of late, anyway, aside from some specific details that I may or may not talk about in a later entry. Who knows?

Work is going pretty decently. I am tired a lot, though. Kind of sick of the computer, and I do read and stuff, but I need something to occupy my mind at all times (I get bored very easily, and also drift into negative thinking more when unoccupied) but I don't know what that should be anymore. Losing excitement over stuff I was finding exciting a week or two ago. I don't know if this is boredom or dysthymia talking. I do know dysthymia's trying to talk its way back in. If only I knew what to DO to stop it altogether!!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Bills bills bills

I just thought I'd do a general sort of update... I plan to do these semi-frequently if I can (amidst other, probably more interesting, posts). Just about things going on in my life. I never record these sorts of things, and as such I never have a record to look back on, and I forget a lot of stuff that happened on some sort of normal day-to-day basis. I spent a very long time (years) thinking that things about my life just weren't worthy enough to write about. Well, I'm going to try to change that. It's time to get writing again -- no matter how boring I perceive the content to be in my head.

So, let's talk about... the most significant in-the-real-world event of my day today, which was having an interview for a job! I have not had a full-time job in at least a year and a month, and I'm incredibly sick of never having the money to do things I want to do. Plus there are things I want to save up for, such as sending care packages to T in Rwanda, saving up for the actual plane tickets for a round trip to Rwanda... you know, all that good stuff. So I decided last night, with the prompting of a good friend of mine who has been battling depression herself, that I would apply for a bunch of jobs online.

I probably finished applying for places around 1 AM. I got a phone call somewhere around 8:30 or 8:45 AM from Manager (I think -- she might have been a supervisor) X, asking me if I'd like to come in for an interview that day at *fast food establishment*. Hell, yeah, I would! It ended up being at exactly the same time as I was supposed to meet with my worker B from the organization that is also my landlord, but I sent B a text and she was okay with it, as I knew she would be, and booked another time for us to meet. So... I went. In pouring rain and crazy-ass wind, but I was glad to go, despite being cold and/or damp for probably about three hours straight.

The interview... well, it seemed to go well. I hope I didn't come off as too cocky, or too certain of myself about getting the job. One thing I said was, "To be frank, I don't anticipate a problem with the references. They should all be pretty good." Was that a cocky-esque thing to say? I don't really know. I've never had the confidence to say things like that before. I've always been told, though, that you should play up your assets. I had thought I'd left my phone at home, so when she asked me if I'd brought my references I said, "No, and I don't even have my phone with me, otherwise I could give them to you now!" But the interview was over after about ten minutes, and right after I finished I sat at another table and was fishing around in my purse for a pen to go with my booklet, so I could at least write to occupy my time, when... boom. Phone. Right at the bottom of the purse underneath all the other junk in there.

So right away I wrote down all the names and numbers and gave them to X. She then asked me if I had checked the bus schedule (to know how late I could stay each night) which I hadn't, so in a rather embarrassed manner I ran off, but in a short amount of time had found the last bus home (route 3, anyway) and told her all the times. She was hiring for evening shifts, which there are usually 3-11 (sometimes they could be 2-10), and very luckily for me, the bus should still get me back home if I leave at 11 sharp Monday through Saturday. I didn't check the route 2 for Saturday, so I'm just hoping it doesn't end a couple hours early, because that would mean I wouldn't be able to transfer to go home and would end up paying at least an $8-9 cab fee to get back to my apartment. I don't see why it would, since it IS a Saturday, but you never know with the bus system here...

Anyway, I really do think my references should be good. My old assistant manager K was very happy to give me her number as a reference when I was looking for jobs before, and I know she thought well of me, so I don't see why she'd give a bad reference. My old supervisor M told me point-blank that he would give me a really really good reference. My third reference was S, the owner and manager at my job previous to the one where I worked with K and M, and he really really liked me, not to mention that I helped him get 100% on a secret shopper score once. (It was really me AND the guy working in the back at the time, J, but I got all the credit because I was the cashier... which was stupid, but anyway.) S is really big on how he's perceived by everyone, common people and business people alike, so stuff like perfect scores on secret shoppers means a LOT to him. Plus the one time I actually did chute (made sure all the orders were bagged right both for drive-thru and front during lunch rush) I made really good service time, and he was working in the kitchen watching the whole thing. So I really think my reference from him will also be top-notch. He still remembers who I am, which is a great sign, since it was about 4.5 years ago that I left his employment.

So... I don't know. Maybe I'm being really insecure. X had the paper with the numbers in her hand by 1:50, and the bus schedules shortly thereafter, and I knew X was working till 2:30 and a(nother?) manager C was working till 3 PM, but they may not have been able to get hold of my references, or may not have had time as it was near the end of shift. But I keep thinking maybe they did get hold of one or two of them and decided not to hire me... or maybe X decided not to during the interview... I just don't know, and uncertainly obviously really really bothers me. I guess the fact that she asked for my references and discussed uniforms and things with me could be construed as good signs, but I'm just not fully convinced. It wasn't like my interview with K1 (where I worked for S), which was more like a chat where it was already assumed I was hired, or K2 (assistant manager reference), where I basically knew before I left that I was likely hired. X didn't give me that sort of indication today. And the interviews I've had where I've been treated distantly have never led anywhere good (I'm remembering a woman at Dominion who looked more displeased as we continued through the interview, and gave me a dead-fish-hand shake before I left), but X didn't really seem to freeze me out. I guess I just couldn't read her. Uncertain uncertain uncertain.

She did say I would be working with mostly teenagers on the night shift, and that a lot of them just don't care. She told me that she deals with this by basically ignoring them and letting them do their own thing while she gets what she needs to do done, like cleaning, serving people, etc. That kind of made me frown internally, though I didn't say anything. If you were like that at my last job, the assistant manager would just ask you to leave. Period. We didn't have room for dead weights in our store. And we went through several when I was there, so I knew what they were like. People who would sweep dirt underneath the counter instead of taking half a minute extra to put it in a dust pan and toss the dirt in the trash. People who tried to deal drugs over the counter. People who stole. Etc etc etc.

Am I going to have to deal with idiots like that? If so, eventually, I know I'm going to end up talking to some of them (as nicely as I can). If I get hired I'll be the new trainee for awhile, and I do look rather young, which hopefully will help them warm up to me better. Which, if push comes to shove later down the line, would be an asset if they did something that really pissed me off. Ignoring their shit is probably good to do if it's just little stuff -- but if they, say, won't serve customers and spend time gabbing instead, or won't clean and spend time slacking off when they have work to do, that will make me angry. I don't mind if people talk and have fun on the job... hell, I like to do that myself. But at my last job, we always got the work done as WELL as having fun. You can do both. And it feels pretty damn good when you do both.

Anyway... I still really REALLY want this job. I'm desperate to make my own money again, which means I will have way more in hand than I do on fucking social assistance. The way America gets on about how people are lazy and choose not to work, then get social assistance so they can sit on their asses and still have an income, makes me wonder if these people have any fucking CLUE what it's like to live poor. Of course, most of the politicians don't. They'll say things like, "But I was a poor student!" Yes, but being a poor student has a foreseeable end in sight. Living in poverty, or being forced into poverty because you can't afford school, have a mental or physical illness that prevents you from working, etc, does not have an end that anybody can see. It's way, WAY different to live poor as an adult than it is to live poor as a student. Trust me when I say that nobody wants to live poor, because it fucking blows chunks. You can never afford anything, and you're always on the verge of running out of essentials (or you do run out). Why the fuck anybody would CHOOSE social assistance is beyond me.

But the point is... I want more money. I want to be able to send the care packages. I want to save for the plane trip. I want to be able to pay my bills in full AND afford a full load of groceries, AND be able to resupply perishables if necessary. Even though I would have to pay rent, it would be a fixed percentage of my income (it's either 30 or 35%), so I would literally have hundreds of more dollars per month to spend (or save... more likely save). I'll have to spend some of the extra in order to get the groceries and send care packages, but a lot of it will be going into my Savings account and staying there. And considering I've never been able to put more than $25 into my Savings account at once the whole time I've been on assistance... that's saying a LOT. When you've always had a safety net and then suddenly find yourself forced to live paycheque to paycheque, completely unable to have a safety net because you need to spend all the money you get on ordinary things, you realize just how valuable that was. And you want it back, desperately.

So I hope I do get the job (my phone will be on when I go to sleep, so if they call I'll hear it!!), and I hope that my slowly-growing, very newfound increase in mental health will allow me to be able to handle the stressors the job may/will throw at me, so I don't have to quit a few weeks in, or something like that. Keeping up with my therapy and pdoc appointments are going to be crucial to this, I think. It's when I don't see my pros that I fall apart the most. Sometimes this is because I'm not willing to be treated at the time -- but nonetheless, that is the pattern, so I will make sure I have my appointments consistently. I don't want to lose all that I've gained even in this short space of time I've been trying to be healthier. I NEED to keep feeling better. I don't want to feel so profoundly hopeless that my desire to commit suicide is greater than my desire for literally everything else in the world. These goals for Rwanda, these things to work for -- these are the things that are keeping me out of hopelessness for now. And there is no reason why I shouldn't be able to work for and do these things, as long as I keep eating and taking my medicine (therapeutically as well as literally).

PS: Yes, I did purposely use a Destiny's Child song title as my blog title. I was SO THRILLED when I heard they performed at the Superbowl! I really miss Destiny's Child. They totally need to make a comeback. (Can you tell I'm a complete 90s child?)

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Not trigger-free

Okay. I've decided I can't promise to make this a non-trigger-free zone. Because trying to make it completely, 100% trigger-free makes me feel like I have to censor myself a lot, and I shouldn't have to do that on my own blog. So beware: This blog may contain triggers. Read at your own discretion. (I'll figure out a way to put that on the top of the sidebar later.)

Not happy. Emotional. Angry, upset, feeling abandoned. I went to my sister S's Facebook today and discovered that I could see absolutely nothing but photographs. No status updates, no wall posts... NOTHING. I don't think it's an accident, either. It's too specific, what I can see and what I can't. Plus I can think of a few reasons which in her mind may all have added together and made her decide she didn't want me to see almost all her Facebook page.

So... yeah. Now I think she hates me, is pissed, and probably thinks I'm selfish and all that bullshit again. We fought during the time of my last hospitalization via text (she thought everyone "coddled" me in hospital, and if I was "going to end up there so often" I needed to just accept what they give me in terms of food and beverage, and other such shit), but Christmas Eve and Day seemed fine and so I thought things were fine. But I couldn't go to our usual Boxing Day gathering with Mom's relatives because I had been so stressed out by the last two days that another 6+ hours surrounded by people and noose would have driven me over the edge in terms of overwhelming stimuli and socialization. It is quite possible that she thought this was me being selfish again (aka being lazy and not going when I was quite capable of going, and should have because Aunt J would have wanted to see me and she just had surgery, and everyone else wanted to see me, and blah blah blah). She never bothers to ask about these sorts of things... she just assumes, then acts on her assumptions. She has done this on many occasions before.

She also knows, because I was actually honest with her and told her, that she could see everything on my FB except my personalstuff filter. I told her I wouldn't be putting her on the filter, but I did tell her the general gist of what I write in the filter. That could be factoring in as well. At this point, I honestly have no clue. I sent her an FB message asking why she blocked me from almost everything, but she hasn't responded yet.

Okay, I disappeared from this entry for a little while, and once I looked at my own Restricted filter... I realized that that's what she's put me on. WHY, I have no idea. I don't know what I did to warrant being put in her fucking RESTRICTED filter. But that little snotrag can feel the wrath, because she's now on MY restricted list, and so are my parents and her boyfriend. FUCK THEM ALL.

I'm so tired of having this family. I honestly think I would have abandoned them all a long time ago, aside from my sister T, except my parents do help me out with material things, and the contact is limited enough that I can handle it. S and I are either friends or in a massive fight, and I'm fucking sick of her shit. She can SUCK MY FUCKING COCK. And, no, I do not care that I don't have a cock.

Yeah. ANGER ANGER ANGER. But anger because I'm hurt, and it's easier to feel angry than hurt. I know this. But I think she deserves my anger, so right now she's getting it (although she doesn't know it). I assure you, I will probably be as diplomatic as possible IF she actually responds to my message. If she doesn't, I will text her. Or call her. Or call the parents, if she still refuses to talk to me. I will find out why she's pulling this asinine passive-aggressive bullshit. [Yes, I realize I became passive-aggressive back. But I can't let her see my shit if she's not letting me see hers. It has to go both ways. It's not fair if she gets to see my entire FB life, aside from a very few statuses and graphics, and I see squat of hers.]

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

A new start

Well, this is the inaugural entry of what I hope will become a productive, at least semi regularly updated blog. This is the part where I'm supposed to say something witty, or at least introduce myself. I guess I can do a little bit of introducing.

My name is Carolyn, and I'm 26 years old, and live in Newfoundland, Canada. (That's province, country.) I am a white, left-wing, cisgendered, homoflexible lesbian, and I have been involved in previous years of my life doing volunteer work for an LGBT center in my area. I have the equivalent of three years of credits at my university, but only one year towards a general Arts degree, if I do choose to go back to university... it's all up in the air at this point. I would definitely be an Arts major, though, as I excel in the arts and only do "okay" in sciences. If I did continue my education I would want to study sociology, specifically social inequality and all the negative -isms and -phobias that go on in our Western society today.

I am not only interested in Western society, though. I have plans to (someday, when I'm ready and have the necessary money) fly to Rwanda, Africa to volunteer at an orphanage. My friend T is already living there, having moved there after deciding to dedicate her life to helping the orphans, and my long-term goal at this moment is to one day join her and do some volunteer work myself for a month or two. In the interim, however, I plan to do my best to support her and the girls she provides a home to, and maybe even the kids at the orphanage (there are 700 of them), by sending care packages of things they might need. [I've got a pretty good idea of some things.] Although I'm not currently working, I do sell items on eBay, which is what is primarily going to fund my endeavor to send these care packages. Before I truly leave for Rwanda, however, I also plan to do an item and/or donation drive, in order that when I come over I can bring LOTS of items with me that will hopefully help them out for months and months after I've left. There are also many things I'd like them to have that you can't ship in a package, such as over-the-counter medications we take for granted, certain cleaning products, etc.

I know I WILL go over there. The only flaw in the plan is the lack of money, which comes from lack of work. And that lack of work comes from my multiplicity of mental illnesses. I have been battling full-blown mental illness since about September of 2005, although I had mental illness that still allowed me to be functional from the age of 15 onwards. Only in early 2006 did I have my first true breakdowns, and 2006 was also the year of my first psychiatric hospitalization. Actually, I ended up having quite a number of hospital admissions that year; I still refer to it as my "year of hell". Though last year would have to take the cake for being the second-worst year I've had since the mental illness began taking away my functionality.

That being said, I HAVE, in fact, had periods in between all this of being functional (albeit still with mental illness). I've worked a couple of relatively long-term stints in fast food, and I even managed to finish one of the many semesters of school I tried to attend during this time period. However, I have been completely non-functional and out of almost all work, and all school, since January of 2011. That's two years. I am not proud of that fact. But I am proud that I am finally, finally working to try and TRULY overcome some of my barriers towards being mentally stable enough to work.

I will give you the diagnoses I currently know to be true. Dysthymic disorder (a form of chronic, but less severe, depression) coupled with periods of double depression (which is defined as a major depressive episode over dysthymia). Thankfully, medication has put the double depression more or less in remission, though I've had to increase my dosage a few times to pull me out of recurrences of the double depression. My formal diagnosis in 2007 was "dysthymic disorder with anxiety", and I definitely have a lot of anxiety still, though I don't know how the DSM would categorize the anxiety I experience. I feel like I've run the gamut right through almost all the anxiety spectrum. And then, of course, there is my diagnosis of borderline personality disorder. That is the major diagnosis my psychiatrist is currently working with; it's the diagnosis he's treating me for via DBT-informed therapy. This is one of the MAJOR hindrances to my ability to be in the workforce, as it takes very little to cause me extreme stress levels, and I do fear that if I was to get another job right now, I would break down, keep missing work, etc, and I would eventually get fired or quit. Now is certainly not the right time to try for a job -- that much I know for sure.

The last, but certainly not least, of my problems is what is known as EDNOS. This stands for eating disorder not otherwise specified. There are time periods, in the past, when I could also have been diagnosed with bulimia nervosa, but at the moment it is a most definite EDNOS. This is the other major cause of my not being able to work. As my EDNOS behaviors for the past two years have been that of a binge/purge anorexic, and I was underweight though I still got my periods, I have been left very physically weakened by my disorder. Even now, as I am slowly gaining weight back in an attempt to finally return to a normal weight, I do not feel strong and healthy. I have no stamina, and very little muscle capability. Eventually, once my diet is sufficiently full of adequate nutrition, I will have to start some exercise to gain back lost stamina and muscle. I will not do this at present, as I don't believe I'm getting enough protein for muscle gain, and I think that perhaps I am not weight restored enough to be doing exercise just yet. I don't want to make myself even less healthy with exercise. Exercise is best saved for when my weight is better and I've been eating steadily for at least a few months.

So... now you know some of the nitty gritties about my life. Since this blog is going to BE about my life, and/or possibly social justice or political issues I feel passionate about, I feel the need to be as open and honest as I can be at this point. Mental illness is a very difficult thing to have, and even more difficult to get people to understand, but I hope these entries can at least clear up many misperceptions about people with mental illness, and in particular those with conditions like borderline personality disorder. I hope, also, to prove that even a psychology patient with issues as complex as mine CAN get better and have a normal life again, and "common unhappiness", as my psychiatrist puts it. (Simply meaning the normal ups and downs of your average Joe, instead of the crazy ups and downs I currently get now -- more downs than ups, unfortuntely.) I also hope to possibly educate people on issues important to me.

But, last and definitely not least (again), I hope to keep a record of my life and what happens in it such that I can look back at my progress and see how far I've come, but also how far I still need to go. A document of my life can be helpful as a record of my feelings before, during, and after events, and hopefully it will help me in my progress with the other goals I have for myself and my life, and potentially help others as well. If this record can help even one or two people feel less alone, or more willing or ready to try recovery, I've done what I set out to. Helping people has always, always been something I've wanted to do, and I hope that this blog is helpful rather than harmful. I will certainly be doing my utmost to keep this trigger-free... or, if I do include any such content, I will put anything triggering behind a cut. I don't want anyone to fear coming here and being triggered. I intend for this blog to be as common-sense-based as I can make it, and if I know I cannot be logical I will vent elsewhere, and come back here when I have a more longsighted view of whatever situation or stressor I had been overwhelmed by.

If you read all that... well, you've done more than I expect of most! Haha. I do appreciate any readership I get, now and in the future. And if you have any questions you'd like me to answer, whether you want me to explain a disorder in more detail, or give certain background information (I will not give real names, addresses, phone numbers, or other personal information, for obvious reasons), or just have me answer questions about myself or my views on certain issues, I'm happy to do that. I'd love this blog to become as interactive as possible.

And with that... I depart for the moment. My shoulders are killing me and I need some sort of snack. I'm going out for coffee with my mother at 8:30, but that's nearly two hours away, and I definitely can't wait that long for food. So happy reading, and may the odds be ever in your favor!! (Maybe I'll talk about my fandoms in another post. :P)