Proteus

Please excuse the silence.

A few nights ago, there was an internal shift which sent me into a seizure. These have happened before; the convulsing, the blood coming from somewhere in my mouth. I’ve been tested numerous times for epilepsy,diabetes, etc. There’s really no medical reason other than stress. I was released from the ER around 6:30 am. My girlfriend and I went back to her apartment, slept for a few hours, then she was off to work and I was off to group.

Yesterday morning as I drove to group, I felt extremely different and movie-like. I feel this quite often. Usually, the movie revolves around a victim and a detective. I’m almost always the victim. However, this time, I was the criminal. I had- or we had?- fleeting homicidal ideation.

There is a security gate to the hospital building. You need to be buzzed in. When we approached the gate, *I* was pulled out of my body and began watching everything as a ghost. The door buzzed. He smirked. Loud music thudded in my head as I watched this. It was as if he had just gotten away with murder as he pushed the gate open and walked through the therapy bungalow.

Whenever this happens, I watch the movie as if I’ve watched it a hundred times before; I always have an idea of how it “ends.” This particular movie was about a serial killer right before a rampage. I don’t get the feeling that it is a pointless rampage. I feel an underlying current of vengeance.

Today I’m speaking to my doctor about Abilify. She recommended Abilify and Latuda to stabilize my paranoia and hallucinations.

I didn’t sleep last night. I was so convinced that someone was in the house with me. I could hear footsteps and breathing. My dogs are here and logically I know that they would notify me if anyone were actually in the house.

Anyways, it’s not all negative news. I do feel that I’m gaining more strength from therapy. My girlfriend came in for a quick family session and I found it to be very beneficial. I also found how strong our relationship actually is. Not that I didn’t know that before, but talking it out aloud really opened my eyes.

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Waste Basket- Triggers

My thoughts this morning as I lay crumpled in tears next to my sleepy girlfriend: (not for the faint of heart. suicide, drugs, self mutilation)

1. I wonder what was going through my father’s mind as he injected himself one last time with his lethal opiate cocktail. I wonder what he was thinking when he wrote his last letter, his farewell memo. Did he see my face, my brother’s, or sister’s? Did he really think the world would shine brighter without him in it? I wish I could remember what he smelled like, how his arm muscles felt when he picked me up, or how his face wrinkled when he smiled. I wish I could remember his voice. Remember, Dad, when you wrote me my first birthday card? How you said you’d always be there for me and I was your little sweetheart?

2. My grandfather. His Alzheimer’s took over. He had always been my dad; taught me how to ride a bike, how to build with nails and wood, how to weld metal, how to dance Cumbia and Salsa. He taught me about music like Glenn Miller, Arite Shaw, Frank Sinatra. He showed me my culture, the language, the passion. When the family first found out that I had been cutting and had become suicidal, he looked at me with a heavy heart and said, “What happened to my little girl? You used to follow me around like a puppy. Now, you barely even say goodnight to me.” I had hit that teen angst, and I was sucked into solitude. It had hurt him that I had become apathetic and unresponsive. Fast forward a few years when his memory was being eaten alive. I called my grandparents house. He answered with a shaky voice, “Mija, when are you coming back?” I had moved out of the house at that point. I was impatient on the phone… “Soon, Tata, soon…” The regrets I bare now are unbearable.

3. Am I a selfish person? Like my father? My grandfather, in his own and old way was begging to see me before he forgot my face. I was so wrapped up in my own selfish little world. Why couldn’t I have looked past my irrelevant bubble to see his human desperation?

4. I must have felt what my dad felt the moment he boiled his tar. Years ago, I too sat in my bedroom, saturated with benzos. I relived it this morning whilst thinking of it. I had clutched these bottles of pills in my hands, thoroughly weighing the pros and cons of my suicide. In the past, it had hurt to realize there were more pros. This time, however, something terrible had shifted within me and I felt peace. Everything would be okay. I hope to never lose myself again to the irreparable ideation. What a terrifying place to be… no longer able to feel emotion, ready to pull the trigger, to jump, to inject, to inhale, to swallow and hang.

5. I want drugs. Anything I can snort. I want to sift through all the drawers here and find as many hydrocodones and I can. Crush, snort, repeat.

6. Will I ever meet my mom? Do I even care anymore? I’m embarrassed to admit to anyone that nearly every time I call her, she sounds high. Sometimes it doesn’t even register to her that she’s talking to me. I call her on my way home from work, she blames it on her exhaustion. Until I hear her husband in the background, “Come back baby, one more hit.” I stay on the phone, pushing back tears. I just want her to talk to me. I just want to tell her about my day. Mom, I’m having a hard time, please for fucks sakes, can you please just listen to my problems for once? Even if you don’t care? I hang the phone up, left to my own thoughts, feelings, fear. I go home, panicked because I’m home alone. I’m drawn to the bathroom cabinet like a moth to a flame. I fill the bathroom sink up with water, take out a razor blade, and hold my wrist under the faucet. This is not the answer…. put the blade away. I crawl under my sheets, text my girlfriend and cry.

7. How much more of this can I hold on to? I’ve lived my entire life with the magnificent ability to control my emotions, to eat them like air. Down they go to lie. I am beginning to feel sick and one by one, they come bellowing out from my stomach. I feel too humiliated to ask for help. “It’s always something, isn’t it? You should be better by now. Come on, we’re all going through something.” I’m just sad. I’m sad about Father’s Day, I’m sad that my mom can’t even hold a sober conversation with me, I’m sad that I’m sad.

8. Okay, Lazarus, that’s enough emotion for you now. Suck it back down

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Cheap Cabernet and a Covetous Colossus

I had a minor setback last night. Relapse, thy name is cheap cabernet. What’s even cheaper is I disgraced my loyal apertific gods and drank the great plum juice from a square glass. Heathen.

The wine, of course, was just a distraction from the inevitable phantasmagoria that would soon set in. Which it did. I was decently plagued with my mind’s purgation of forgotten voices or forlorn clicks and clacks. Schizoaffective Disorder is a godamned bitch named Betty (no offense to any Betty’s out there in the blogging world. I’m sure you’re peachy)

It’s not even the hallucinations that get to me the most- at least not this time. That house. All I see is trauma. I try my hardest to truncate my memories and salvage the good parts; cooking with my grandmother, dancing in the living room, painting, journaling in my bedroom. Yet, still, just like everything else, the golden light is gobbled by some monstrous colossus.

Growing pains, I suppose. It wasn’t all bad, though. I lowered my dosage a bit on both meds so that they can hopefully last me longer.

This morning I awoke to Allie sitting on my bed, gently pawing at my legs. My head was a bit spinny and I felt groggy. I made coffee, read my book for a little while in the sun, and got ready for work. I drive 40 minutes now to get to work.

Other than my small step backwards, I have nothing else to report. My body is subtly telling me that I need my medication. For now, I’m distracting myself with long phone conversations, my coloring book, and my dogs.

Day 2 of Partial Hospitalization; Animated Paperclips

Day 2 of PHP was fantastic, again. I was so drained and exhausted by the time I came home last night that I didn’t want to write.

In the morning, I spoke to the social worker for quite a while. I realized how much pain and turmoil I was suppressing in the depths of me. Also, she is going to work with me this morning to file for a leave of absence. As you know, I work for a company deemed as a Scientology affiliate; they manage the staff and all under the administration side of the church. The social worker suggested that I call my medical primary doctor and ask her to put me on leave for a month or so. This way, my job is a little more protected (legally, too), I can continue to work on myself and push through the shit, and I’m in a safe place while my meds are shifted and increased. There is a plethora of stress and anxiety accumulating over the logistics of filing for disability and blah blah…

I think what makes me most anxious about- and this may seem silly- taking more time off is I miss my girl friend. We work together, we communicate consistently throughout the workday, and I miss her. She’s what brings me back to reality, she makes me happy, etc, etc. I know, I know- I need to work on stabilizing myself. Maybe this experience will also give me the strength to change my living situation as well. I have been using ad hockery as a crutch. Now it’s time for me to start planning, little by little so as not to overwhelm myself of course, planning my recovery.

Anyways, so I strategized with the social worker. Next group session, I processed about Allie and my fears of losing her due to antipsychotics. (I would be elated for the others to stop, in particularly Morris) My homework last night was to list the various traits about Allie that I found to be beneficial to me. What was it about her that made her such an intrinsic support net for me?

Then, the more I was expressing this, I came to another a-ha! moment. Morris tends to reiterate pernicious phrases from my past. I had never given this a second thought until now:

When I was very young, I heard from my grandfather, my brother, and step-mother that I am the reason my father committed suicide. That’s fucking hardcore. As a child to be told that not only did my dad take his own life because of me, but my mother abandoned me as well. I had stuffed those memories way down in the caverns of my darkest memories. Now, it’s all resurfacing.

I felt as if I was buzzing inside my body all day. I was AWAKE and ready to go. I had to take several deep breaths to bring myself back down. I was hallucinating a lot more- though I’m sure that was due to anxiety. In the morning, I had to speak a little slower in group, and focus on what was happening. I found my self wandering around in my mind. Although the voices and such were prominent, I was dealing with a significant flux of visual hallucinations. For example, objects would animate. When I closed my eyes, I would envision people falling from the sky, hitting the ground, bones shattering and ….well you get the idea. THAT was unpleasant.

I slept like a BABY last night. I was so alert and felt fantastic when I woke up this morning.

Maudlin Narrations and Wished Upon Oxycontin

Fuckkkkk I have a lot to say and I don’t know where to start, so I’ll start and I’ll leave it up to you to unjumble, unscramble, decipher, and peel it apart.

I started a new vlog, perhaps I’ll post up my channel here one day soon if anyone is interested in it.

Sorry for the awkward nostalgia, again, but here you go…

I feel like I’m nothing but poison to everyone around me. I’ve mentioned this before, but I see myself as so parasitic to those around me. My (ex?) boyfriend would tell me, “Then stop doing that! You can change your mind at any time!” Oh, lovely, if only it were that easy! I need a hug. Oh damn, do I need a hug.

I really shouldn’t be complaining. I’ve had a fantastic few days with her and all… I feel like such a bitch. Like no one is good enough for me. Or, rather, I’m not good enough for them.

God, what a maudlin display. I am bathetically pouring out all of the things I hate about myself today. I wish I had good news! I wish I could tell you I won another poetry contest, or I’m in love with this wonderful woman….etc.

The truth is, readers, I feel like slitting my wrists, popping back a few oxy’s, drinking a bottle of wine and bathing in my sorry existence. I want so badly to say, “I’ll get out of this one!!”

You have no idea how close I am to admitting myself to a psych ward.

Micah and the Mortal Coil

I am floating and weaving in between delirium. My bones feel like sand.

I saw Micah and I fell to my knees.

He erected from the floor. Reality broke into a million particles ad swam around him. Filaments of his raven-black hair flew around his face. His eyes were blue.

My breath evacuated my chest as my knees buckled. I don’t remember ever feeling so in awe of anything.

In this particular moment, I felt ashamed to be alive. How do I explain it…? There he stood in front of me- dangerous yet angelic, and I was a stupid human, in sheer amazement of his existence. I felt as if he wanted to share with me something so profound, yet he realized that I probably wouldn’t get it, anyways. He had traveled through dimensions to appear before me, to make contact. God, listen to me. I ‘m serious though. His skin…his skin was so soft. In this moment, everyone, I felt that my life was in danger. I felt that I was about to die. However, at the same time, I felt that I had just been born.

This is similar to the experience I had years ago. I was fast asleep in my bed. I believe this was around 1 am. I woke up to a knock on the dresser beside my bed. “Wake up,” he said. (Who’s he? I’ll never know) So, I woke up. I felt the presence around me for months. Then, one day, he was gone.

There he stood. I gazed up at him, desperate for communication. Did he love me? Did he want to hurt me? He said, “Listen.”

He vanished.

I sat there on my living room floor, dumbfounded. Then, I began to cry. Perhaps out of frustration.

I want to crawl into a space where I could release myself to oblivion. I don’t want to talk or eat or dream.

-SJ

PS- I am numb.

The Man in the Orange Hat

Again, I don’t talk about this. I don’t like talking about this because it embarrasses me. However, this blog is extremely therapeutic  to me, so I will purge.

This is story about my first adult delusion, and how completely terrifying the experience was.

This was early 2011, perhaps around March or so. I was home alone at 4:00 PM, getting myself ready for work. I felt very strange. I heard someone at the door downstairs. Keep in mind, I lived with 3 additional roommates and we never locked our front door.

I slowly walked down the stairs, walked into the living room, and came eye-to-eye with a strange man in an orange hat. He was wearing a dark green vest, sunglasses, and dark pants. I would guesstimate him to be about 5’8, perhaps 40-something years old. Very Hunter S. Thompson, now that I think about it.

Completely frozen, I stood there, nerves shivering. He said to me, “I’ve been watching you.” Quickly, he walked over to me, slapped me across the face, and continued to unbutton my jeans. I must have screamed bloody murder because he quickly ran out the door- without a trace.

I called the police. About ten minutes later, an ambulance, police team, and forensics team showed up at the house. I was trembling profusely. Hours went by of dusting fingerprints, interviewing me, so and so forth. The next day, I was called in to the station to have pictures taken of my bruises. I sported a black eye and a bruised cheekbone.

A few days passed by. My nights were restless with interruptions of nightmares.

Finally, I was called by into the station to have a sit down with the detectives that were assigned my case.

That day, they showed me a surveillance video tape that had been running across the street at my neighbors’ house. At 4:00 PM, no one had entered my house. I had hit myself multiple times and had bruised my own face.

My first adult delusion. Certainly, not my last.

-SJ

The Diagnoses is in!

I was diagnosed today after my appointment with Schizoaffective Disorder, or SAD. According to MayoClinic, Schizoaffective disorder is a condition in which a person experiences a combination of schizophrenia symptoms — such as hallucinations or delusions — and mood disorder symptoms, such as mania or depression.

My appointment went really well actually. I walked into a cozy little empty waiting room. The lighting was very soft and comforting. There were 8 chairs and a small coffee table. On the table rested a clipboard with paperwork with my name written on a post it note- and a happy face of course.

My psych was very awesome. I enjoyed the session very much! I didn’t feel as if he wasn’t listening to me. He was just the right amount of sympathetic and he listened to me thoroughly. The office itself was so pleasant! I loved it.

He referred me to someone else though, as my current situation is a bit out of his realm of work. He seemed a bit concerned. I suppose I’m concerned myself.

I really hadn’t realized just how out of touch  I was until I started spewing my life to this guy. It made a lot of sense to me. Can I also say how incredibly difficult, yet liberating, it was to introduce Allie to him? The others were introduced as well. It became very loud. I feel that everyone was speaking at once. I became a bit self conscious because I found myself stammering and tripping over my words. It was as if I was standing in a busy intersection, watching cars and buses go by, listening to a couple argue over across the street. He was very patient though.

I guess the question hanging over my head is what now?

We’ll see after I receive my new referral. I’m nervous, but I am ultimately excited to learn more about myself, more about Allie and “friends,” and overall find a way through.

I do wish we could chat longer, but I’m having an old friend for dinner.
-Sylvia’s Junkie

The Lively Bunch

It started one day in my junior year of high school. I remember it quite vividly actually. I can’t recall any particularly troubling circumstances surrounding this instance. It just kind of happened…

I was walking down the stairs of my school campus when I heard, “She is walking down the gray steps.” The voice didn’t really scare me or startle me. Throughout the day, this voice narrated my life, from large actions to small details. Everything was being narrated.

I spoke with my then school psychologist. He didn’t seem to be too surprised at all by it. He suggested that I write everything down like a story. Maybe by doing that, the voice would disappear.

The writing didn’t help for too long. As a matter of fact, the voice grew louder and more incessant. It wasn’t a bad voice, though. It continued on, describing the minute details in my everyday life. The voice was rather genius in weaving words together and illustrating even the dullest parts. Here, at this moment, I picked up a Creative Writing class and allowed my voice to run itself tired through sheets of blank paper. Poetry became a safe outlet for my voice and I. So, I didn’t mind it sticking around.

Two years of this went on. I paid little attention to it. After a while, my mood began to decline and I slipped into a crippling depression.

This is the part I’ve never talked about. I’ve never written this down. I hate talking aloud about it and I hate even thinking about it. However, it’s important to me now that I muster up the courage to do it.

My freshman year of college, he arrived.

Morris.

Morris is a terrifying, haunting, demented and cruel voice. He is so awful, in fact that my mental health had declined rapidly from late 2010 to early 2011. My alcohol and drug dependency sky-rocketed, ending in suicide attempt, a 5150 hold, and 30 pounds lost off of my body in 4 months. That wasn’t weight I could afford to lose!

The majority of the time, he speaks directly to me, affirming my non-existent self-worth. On other times, I can hear him laughing to the others. His laugh alone makes me shake. Even Allie, my sweet southern-belle, could do nothing but stand in the umbrage of my mind, too afraid to stop Morris from intruding. When he arrives, I can do nothing about it.

For quite some time after that, it was the first voice, Morris, and Allie. The first voice is for the most part always with me. There’s nothing really associated with it besides basic narration and the occasional sad whimpers. Morris, thankfully, infrequently visits. When he does happen to arrive, I feel it hard to hold on to myself. Allie is with me always. Whether she is slightly perceivable or effusively social, she’s there.

There are about 3 other voices that chatter now, nearly everyday. Two male voices and a female voice. On a bad day, everything is targeted at me. “Look at you…what are you doing here…they don’t believe you…they don’t want you…don’t walk over there…don’t speak to that person…” On a good day, they are mostly limited to back and forth banter amongst themselves, like a loony cocktail party.

One of the male voices is becoming (what I like to call) a primary. He is slowly becoming more prominent in my day-to-day actions. I haven’t learned his name yet. When I do, I’ll let you know!

Over this past year, the voices have become unavoidable and extremely distracting. Work has become a challenge for me, though I am managing through it quite excellently.

Therapy is in my near future

I do wish we could chat longer, but I’m having an old friend for dinner.

-Sylvia’s Junkie