... in no particular order, with no particular priority, just rolling around in my head...
Things I am looking forward to this weekend...
* kid play time
* time alone
* time with people
Things I will need (to create for myself)...
* fire (candles and bonfire)
Things I will do...
* love and be loved
This is just a placeholder for myself to remind myself when I noticed symptoms of impeding decline...
Noticed over the past week (not constant but enough to be noticeable):
Impatience (with everything - driving, doing stuff, cooking, games)
Declining interest in things I like
Headaches at night
All the above, plus some new stuff over the past 24 hours:
Intolerance and irritation at small things, snappy
Not laughing at obviously funny things (tv etc)
High levels of anxiety about work during the coming week - even though I know I am well-equipped and can handle it
Over- focus on one thing to the exclusion of all else - such as a game or website
Over Spending (although I did show restraint on one item... But it's still in the basket ready to hit buy)
Mindlessness and listlessness to completing household tasks
Sad with no good reason
Did not enjoy night out for dinner tonight when it was 1. With people I like, 2. With people I feel safe with, and 3. It was dinner out!
Started trying to focus on taking medications everyday again so this may be the result of leveling out.
As always, excellent at being aware of the symptoms, not so excellent at negating them.
will focus on positive thoughts
It crept up on me... like it always does. Having been in a number of different treatment groups, hospitals, seen a number of psychs and so on, I know what the triggers are, I know what it looks like.
I have been feeling pretty good for the past 6 months, occasional bouts of 'wonkiness' but nothing major.
I had recently stopped taking my medications – not out of a specific decision, but more that: I didn't take them one day, and then didn't the next, and then the next and before I knew it, it was 4 weeks and I hadn't been taking them.
The horrible heat had meant I wasn't sleeping which is a huge trigger, and recently since then my sleep has been sporadic, filled with nightmares and disconnectedness.
I started writing this when I first noticed the symptoms, but then it hit me full on and writing when I am 'in it' is too hard – everything is too hard.
Actually, this is pretty hard, but what happened today has motivated me enough to try.
I had been thinking I needed to see my psych – it has been a long time since I had seen her. Last appointment was end of May. But I was unemployed and it is expensive so I didn't go to see her.
Anyway – its been creeping up – and last week it hit with a vengeance, such that I couldn't go to work. I tried to do things to mitigate it. I went out to see people – Jewellery party, MSM, Afternoon Tea.
So push came to shove and I made an appointment last week and was lucky enough (I thought) to get in today.
Unfortunately, things did not go well. My Psych informed me, within minutes of sitting down, that she was 'reducing her workload' and would not be able to see me anymore. She went on to say that she wasn't able to offer care for someone who didn't attend regularly; i.e. she wasn't available for what she called 'emergency' care.
I completely understood what she was saying – she needs to see someone consistently to be able to provide consistent treatment.
But of course, in my current state, my reaction was to feel rejected. I was also embarrassed.
I was devastated – possibly an overreaction which I am sure I would normally take in my stride.
Solution is easy – go back to GP and start again. But its hard not to feel completely let down and isolated. Sure, I understand her reasons, but I went to her for help, and instead I got nothing.
And worse, she charged me $235 for the appointment.
I have been doing some thinking and reading about hedonism; hedonism, the theory (I am sure we can *all* get behind that!), and hedonism, the reality (boo hiss reality!).
And about some of the greatest hedonists who really lived lives not just of pleasure, but as free from pain as possible.
After all, I think the thing that interests me most, is not just the idea of living for pleasure but living a life of pleasure free from pain and hurt etc – “pleasure minus pain” from the definition of a Hedonist as someone who “strives to maximize net pleasure”.
I’ve found it interesting how many people equate pleasure, sensuality and the pursuit of these, as akin to gluttony and presume excess. Even! Attributing gluttony to one of my favourite hedonists – Epicurus – who in fact was all about moderation. Most searches link debauchery with hedonism.
Also interesting is the number of people who equate hedonism to pursuing pleasure ‘above all else’ and to the exclusion of all else. As social creatures, living in a world in which we interact in some way, it is hard to see how your bliss can really be obtained without others. “In the Epicurean view, the highest pleasure (tranquillity and freedom from fear) was obtained by knowledge, friendship and living a virtuous and temperate life.”
“It is true that Epicurus recommends for us to pursue our own pleasure, but he never suggests we should live a selfish life which impedes others from achieving that same objective.”
A more modern hedonist and philosopher is Michel Onfray who defines hedonism "as an introspective attitude to life based on taking pleasure yourself and pleasuring others, without harming yourself or anyone else."
For him "In opposition to the ascetic ideal advocated by the dominant school of thought, hedonism suggests identifying the highest good with your own pleasure and that of others; the one must never be indulged at the expense of sacrificing the other. Obtaining this balance – my pleasure at the same time as the pleasure of others – presumes that we approach the subject from different angles – political, ethical, aesthetic, erotic, bioethical, pedagogical, historiographical…."
It is hard to find hedonists throughout time that did not, through their pursuit of pleasure, suffer in some way. Usually because of their 'over-pursuit, for example: Marquis de Sade and
F. Scott Fitzgeraldand and Zelda Sayre Fitzgerald. And it is equally hard to find examples of modern-day hedonists successfully living a hedonistic lifestyle (examples welcome!).
And that may be the reality. For in a society where it is seen as debauched and selfish to look to one's own pleasure, it is hard for a hedonist to stand apart and actively seek pleasure without appearing debauched or selfish.
I think Ellen DeGeneres may be a modern day hedonist. A lot of her life revolves around seeking pleasure and pleasuring others, or providing pleasure to others. I see a lot to admire in her, and in reading her books I find I appreciate that her sense of humour is not based around the detriment of others or deriving pleasure from others pain.
Equally, whilst I would love to be able to avoid pain (physical and emotional) at all costs, it doesn't seem to be possible. Being with people and seeking pleasure in and with others, does mean living with the trials and tribulations this brings.
This requires a lot more pondering and reading ... needed to get some of it down however.
So Perth is a village. This is a known fact, everyone knows everyone else – well almost. And it is an exciting and fun thing to be ‘perth'd’ and to find out people you know, know each other too.
But there is a hard/harsh/horrible/harrowing thing that happens to me on Facebook and I don’t think there is a good way to stop it or even if I want to…
It’s that thing where I am reading someone’s post and I want to comment, but I notice that Person A has commented before me. There is a two-fold effect if that Person A is known to me but is someone who is ‘not in my life’ for some reason. Best example, most real example, I can come up with for ‘not in my life’ is the current partner of my ex-husband – the mother of his two children. Someone who I am sure I would probably like if I had ever met her under other circumstances but someone whom I will never be able to converse with under ANY circumstances. She is not the only Person A, there are others.
Two fold effect…
Effect 1: That “heart dropping to the floor, pain in the pit of your stomach, acid in the mouth, uncomfortable feeling”. Nuff said.
Effect 2: Knowing that once you have commented on someone’s post; you then get sent everyone else’s subsequent comments on that post by email… that hesitation on my part on commenting on the post because Person A will see it.
Which is a pain (both literal and figurative) because I would *like* to comment on that post, especially if it is good news and congratulations are in order, or commiserations, or just a funny “I’m here/there too!” comment. But I get effect 1 and then realise effect 2… and then spend the next few hours in the back of my mind trying to parse different comments through my head that could possibly be a reasonable response to the original post.
Like I said... no real solution.
P.S. I know this could lead on to a whole different conversation about ‘regrets’ and being able to ‘be yourself’ at all times.
I've been thinking about Facebook in relation to LiveJournal and why it is so easy to update to FB (some might say addictive) and I haven't LJ'd in forever.
In particular, I have been thinking about what I am calling the 'readers digest' effect – that is what I compare FB to. It is the Reader's Digest of people's life.
Some people disparage Reader's Digest as 'not real' literature and certainly the writing is tailored to the 'every man' (which is not necessarily bad) and actually if you want to see truly bad writing then read any online news articles by Nine MSN, ABC.net, etc that are updated on the hour but poorly edited and possibly not even spell-checked!
For me Readers Digest is bite-sized pieces of writing on topics of general interest. Having said that, the only ones I have ever read are in doctor’s offices.
Reading Facebook and keeping up with friend’s lives in that way is easy and lets me access ‘bite-sized’ chunks of people’s life. Reading a LJ post is a more intimate and character-based look into someone’s life, like a real book or short story.
As I have been finding more time to read LJ again (Yippee and Hurrah!) – and no, I have no idea where the times was, it just suddenly reappeared – I have found myself re-enamoured with the concept of blogging, not necessarily as a blogger but as a … is there a better word than… voyeur?
Probably I should qualify this by noting that not all blogs I read are LJ based and more and more people are blogging in other places in the blogosphere (thanks xkcd!), it’s just that most of the people who I read are or were here, and this is where I am now.
I think Reader’s Digest must work on a word-limit basis for their articles and that is another thing about Facebook, it has an inherent word-limit and therefore people are more inclined to stick to the basics and use less language. LJ again has a luxurious unlimited quality which allows people to express more freely and, as above, allows me a more intimate and character-based delving experience.
Also, although certainly not true for all bloggers, my blog has a limited audience, however my Facebook posts are fairly open and my FB flist includes people who I would not expect, or maybe want, to read my blog. Never the twain shall meet.
But should I want a more ‘open’ blog I would consider starting a new one and linking it to Facebook as others have done.
I enjoy Facebook and I enjoy Blogs and I enjoy knowing what is happening at all different levels.
"See!" I say to myself, "Today WAS better than yesterday! Nothing bad happened. You managed to get up on time and you worked hard."
"You had a good lunch. You walked to your mum and dad's house (2.5 k - only 20 mins but still walking!). You had a lovely time at family dinner and enjoyed time with K (one yr old niece)".
"Tomorrow you can keep up your good work."
Myself is very nice to me sometimes.
Today I am thankful for... in no particular order...
Hot water - especially since a little while ago we were without it for nearly 3 weeks
My macbook pro - so shiny and silver and it gives me so much love
Puggle, Bilby and Cygnet (oh, ok ... and their parents too!)