Friday, May 23, 2008

Almost a Month Later

I was going to wait until May 29th to peep in and say hello, but I don't have that kind of patience. I don't know if anyone is even reading this blog anymore, because who visits a ghost town?

I hope you all have been doing well. I'm not going to throw a self-pity party or anything, but I've really come to acknowledge a pattern with myself, my feelings and my behavior. This is probably how it's going to be for the rest of my life: I sleep for two or three days at a time in a state of extreme fatigue, disinterest and depression, then, for the next two or three days I'm awake, energetic, interested. Today is one of those days, one of those "awake" days. I don't feel depressed. I've done some good things and I've done some bad things. Today I surprised myself by working up enough nerve to speak to the senator's office on the telephone about the Climate Security Act. Of course I was nervous and could hardly think a word ahead of my speech, but the call was brief and I felt satisfied after doing it. On these "awake" days I've been out in the backyard planting peonies, anemones and milkweed for the butterflies, watering them, repotting plants, helping my husband build the privacy fence in the backyard, cutting grass and even trimming a hedge. I never really thought I'd say this, because I always thought gardening was for old people, but I really enjoy the feeling I get from giving things life or watching them grow. It's a rewarding feeling. I wish I had this energy every day, but I'm thankful to have it sometimes. It seems like my husband and dad get all excited when I have an awake day; it's like they celebrate. I'm glad it makes them happy, but I'm really sad that my bad days make them sad. I don't think my mother understands, still. She seems to just think I can find another job. If I could work, I wouldn't have left my perfect job.

In the next two weeks we'll be going camping for a while; just a few days. We go a number of times every spring and summer. To be perfectly honest I absolutely dread it. I used to look forward to going camping, but not anymore. I don't know why I lost interest in it. Probably the same reason I lost interest in most things. For over a year now I've dreamed of having a laptop to take with me, so I could sit and create my digital artwork or, yes, even play games while sitting around the site. I've entered a few sweepstakes for a laptop. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Speaking of material things, lately I've really had a desire for material things. Mostly it's the laptop but I have also been wondering if I could possibly get back into photography, something I was quite passionate about in my late teens and early 20s. I have a Nikon N6006 model, but it's not digital. I want to try to sell it, but I won't get much for it, maybe $100 if I'm lucky, and the new digital Nikon SLRs cost an arm and a leg. I still have lots of lenses from my old Nikon, but I'm not for sure if they're compatible with the digitals. They are auto-focus, though, so... maybe? Anyway, I've been entertaining the thought that maybe photography would get me out of the bed regularly. I could get in the car on a whim and drive somewhere, anywhere, and take pictures. Not because I was shooting for a photo contest or trying to pretend to be Ansel Adams, but because pushing the shutter button and seeing the results on screen is so gratifying, to know that I captured a moment. It's nice, being able to go back to that moment, to examine it further and in greater detail. Moments go by too fast and we simply can't examine a moment, not unless we had the power to stop time.

On my good days I've been entering sweepstakes regularly. It's still my current obsession. I haven't won much of anything, aside from a music download, a Blockbuster rental, a loaf of bread, a Nintendo DS video game and a set of four mini-bowls. I also won two tickets to a Johnny Mathis concert in my city, but I couldn't find anyone interested enough to go with me. To be honest, I didn't even know who Johnny Mathis was when I entered the sweepstakes. I've only been doing sweepstakes a little over a month, so I know I have to be patient for the big win. It will come. And there will be more than one.

I can't keep my mouth shut any longer. I was going to wait until June 14th to tell you this, and it's only a couple weeks away but I still can't wait. I wanted to wait exactly one year from June 14th last year to share the good news. Well, here goes. Last year, one day after my 29th birthday, on June 14th, 2007, I had lasik eye surgery on both eyes. I've been seeing 20/20 ever since! I've had to wear glasses or contacts since I was a little girl, and I couldn't even tell you what the water looked like while swimming underwater. Last year, a month or two after my surgery, I put on my goggles and swam around, looking at the sunlight dancing on the bottom of the pool, all in crystal clarity. And, as if that wasn't enough, I could get out of the bed AND see the alarm clock without having to put on glasses. Also, I felt very self-conscious in glasses and contacts always hurt my eyes. I do suffer from dry-eye from time-to-time, but it is totally worth it.

As far as friends are concerned, I haven't been keeping in touch with a single soul. No penpals, no one. I even pretended to be "sick" to get out of a lunch date with four of my ex-coworkers at the last minute. There's a reason, though. There are three coworkers that I feel comfortable around, and I can confide in them. You just know they're going to ask me all kinds of questions, right? They invited another coworker to come with us, and I'm not terribly comfortable around her. So, I called and gave the good-ole "stomach hurts" excuse a try. My husband happened to hint around to one of the girls that I would just be comfortable going to lunch with the three of them, and they got the hint, so now it appears it will just be us going to lunch sometime next week. I haven't seen them in three months. There are two girls who live locally that I want to see: Laurel and Chris. They don't know each other, but they both have kids and I think they would get along splendidly, so perhaps I will try to get all three of us together sometime. I do want to see them both, though. I need a friend, just someone to see and smile with, play a game with, walk with, talk with, eat with, drink tea with, and it's all my fault that I don't have a close friend, because I keep to myself too much. The thing is, though, I should be a friend to them when they need me, not the other way around. To have friends you have to be a good friend, and, I'm not a good friend. How's that for self-flattery? I feel guilty because everyone is willing to be a friend, but I'm stuck in some hermit/recluse world, where I dream about going out with friends but simply can't work-up enough energy to do it.

But, let's remember. There are the good days, the "awake" days. I have finally accepted the fact that I am an ultra-rapid cycling bipolar and it's going to be this way until I either get better or die. Good days are wonderful. I think it's supposed to be this way. Why? I don't take good days for granted. I do, however, feel terribly ashamed that I am mentally disabled and I am completely disgusted with myself when I think of it, so this is one thing I need to overcome.

I may be back soon. To tell you the truth, lately I've missed blogging. I will probably never spend as much time doing it as I used to, but yes, I've missed it.

9 comments:

Suze said...

Sophia!

It is good to know that you are still there. I am excited by the idea of you taking pictures. Please share them with us online. Your digital art is wonderful. I had downloaded one of your pieces as my desktop before my hardrive became contaminated a few weeks ago. I may do it again. But one of your pictures would be great too once you get into that!

I love photography myself, although I haven't done it much and I really don't know much about it. I have just always enjoyed it and think that I have a knack for it.

I have a vague memory that old fashioned lenses may be usable on newer digital cameras. I am not sure, though. But I also think that the lenses may also be valuable and expensive to replace if you do have good ones. Find out if they can be used on a new camera before you get rid of them.

I am glad to hear that you are spending time outside. I love gardening myself, although I haven't spent time on it in a long time. My son has been taking over for me lately.

It may seem like your blog is a ghost town at the moment, but I think that all of those people who you have interacted with are just waiting for you to re emerge. And here you are. But please, try not to feel a sense of obligation. We love you exactly as you are. We each have to get through this life as we do. Let us come to you as you are. Don't try to adapt to us too much. If you remain true to who you really are, life will come to you.

OK, off the soap box. As my friend BJ would say, "You can slap me if you want". But it is good to read you again.

Alexander M Zoltai said...

Dear, Dear Sophia,

Please lose the "mentally disabled" label, even the bipolar one.

Look into the brain's response to nutrition--not synthetic vitamins, real whole food nutrition.

And, please do check out this site: http://www.sengifted.org/

~ Alex

goatman said...

I had to tell a girl in a local gas/food shop the other night that she had a wonderful laugh. I said: it makes you feel happy just to hear it".
I think she was pleased ,but later I remembered a riddle that would have made her laugh again, maybe:

What is big and huge, is purple, and lives in the ocean? . . .
. . .
Moby Grape ha

Yeah I know its dumb and she probably wouldn't have laughed but I wished I had tried it on her anyways. Why do ya always think of the good stuff too late?

Sophia said...

Hi Suze,

It's so nice to come back and hear from you upon my return.

I am working with a man in Russia who wants to put my designs in a calendar. I'm not sure how much to charge him. I hate it when they leave it up to me, because I'm afraid I'll either not get enough money or charge more than they want to pay. I'm so excited to be selling them. It may inspire me to get back into creating them.

I would love to get back into photography. My tastes in cameras, though, are too rich for my pocketbook. I'm far too in love with Nikons for my own good. I'd like a D80.

I am hopeful that the old lenses work on the newer cameras. Should I ever save enough money to buy a Nikon, having the old lenses will save me a lot of money. I have a 30-80mm, a 70-300mm, 80-200mm, loads of filters and a nice Nikon flash. The only lens I'd want to buy would be a macro.

Today I went outside and weed whacked with our rechargeable weed-eater. I have never done that before because I've always been afraid of flying things hitting me. I did get hit in the face a few times, but I just got a new pair of safety goggles which gave me some courage to do the weed eating.

Thanks for still being here and not giving up on me during my hiding phase. It's nice to read your gentle words again.

Sophia said...

Hi Alex,

You're such a sweet soul. :) I don't know why I feel the need to beat-up on myself so much, to degrade myself by calling myself disabled. It seems like most of my life, I looked at mentally ill people as outsiders, and now here I am, on the outside.

I'll try to look into nutrition. I also need to look into sleep rhythms. I read an article last night that said not having a steady sleep schedule is bad for bipolars and can make their symptoms worse. I always have crazy hours. I don't know if I have the self-discipline to make myself go to bed at night, because sometimes it seems like for a few hours late at night I'm wide awake with racing thoughts, as if I had just had three cups of coffee.

The gifted site is nice to see. I was a "gifted" child, or so they said. There were five of us out of the whole school that got pulled out of class every week to attend a special class for children with high I.Q. I had such a good time in those classes. In fact, it was that class that caused me to develop a love for solving puzzles. It was good for me. I do wonder, though, about the relationship between high intelligence and emotional problems. Most of the emotionally ill people I know are extremely intelligent.

Have you always been knowledgeable about vitamins and whole foods or is it something you're learning in your new business?

Sophia said...

Hi Goatman,

*hugs* You're still here, too. Thanks.

If you want to know the truth, your joke made me laugh. But then again, you've always been able to make me smile.

I don't know any jokes, but I'm going to try to remember this one to pass on to others.

Alexander M Zoltai said...

Sophia,

I've had a layman's knowledge of nutrition for many years but my business is letting me learn some truths that the Agri-business/PharmaLobby don't want known!

I stopped calling myself a chronic depressive when I found the SENG site!!

~ Alex

jim said...

Hello Sophia, I bet you look great in those goggles, Want to see that!

You are an internet Star, always have been, a wonderful eccentric internet STAR, a Fave in the world of communications and entertainment, knowledge and real life! That will never change!

Do the gardening, do the photos, post some pics and keep us posted, we will be here to read you and see you when you will!

My best to you and yours, love and peace and, oh yes, keep on keeping on Sophia. Jim.

Sophia said...

Hi Jim,

Hehee... actually, I look quite geeky in the safety goggles. When I was younger I wouldn't be caught dead in them. However, now that I'm older and wiser, I realize how important my eyes are to me, so I don't let vanity get in the way.

I'm an Internet Star? Do you think I might wind up in National Enquirer anytime soon? :)

I will try to post more pictures. I won't post any of myself, though, as I'm quite self-conscious. But I don't think most women like to have pictures of themselves taken. I know my mother and sister always complain when I bring my camera along.

I was just going to email you last night to find out how you've been doing, but it was getting very late so I went to bed. Seems you've beat me to the punch. Good to hear from you. A million hugs to you, my sweet Jim!