Wednesday, August 15, 2012

last week's deleted post and some good news

I wrote the below on 8/15 and then I removed it, because I was afraid I was revealing too much information:

Do you know anything about Bobby Fischer? If so, what do you think:

1. He was a mind control victim of the Nazi/CIA/Illuminati government
2. He suffered from paranoid Schizophrenia
3. He just played chess like a genius
4. Combination of above: please explain.

Please answer in the comments. I have been most fascinated by this man lately since I watched a documentary about him, which I probably shouldn't have watched. As my mom says about these things, "Alcoholics shouldn't watch movies where everybody is drinking; why put that in your head?" But I love CIA movies like the Bourne series, and my mom went to see the Bourne Legacy with me last weekend. I think there is a lot of truth in those movies that relate to my life.

Anyway, I know this sounds weird but please share your thoughts on Bobby Fischer.


(P.S. I know I sound unwell in this post. Oh well.)


Back to today 8/27/2012

My Navane is at 4 mgs a day now, I think. Can't really remember at the moment. It's either 2 or 4. Anyway, I haven't noticed it helping much if at all.

I'm going back to college tomorrow, unless the tropical storm leads to classes being canceled, and then I'd be starting Thursday if that was the case.

There is some good news:

To wit, I got through my Social Security review, and they are continuing my benefits.

Also, I got through my financial aid appeal, and I can continue college.

Also, this past week, I went four days on a trip to a place 2 1/2 hours away to get trained to be a NAMI Peer to Peer Mentor for Peer to Peer classes. This is so I can help teach a Peer to Peer course at my former community college.

In other news, the symptoms continue. I'm really tired too. I honestly don't have much to say right now. But since two friends emailed to ask how I was doing, and one reads this blog, I thought I would write a post to update you in case anyone is interested.

I am relieved about the financial stuff being taken care of. I apologize for not keeping up with other people's blogs right now. It has been busy at my job, and I haven't been up to it. I haven't been on Facebook like usual either recently.

But things will work out. I am functioning.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Navane - meh.

So I saw my doctor today. Okay I saw two doctors, the gyn one and the shrink, but the psychiatrist is the only one I'd write about here. Anyway, I am on this Navane drug now. I am taking 2 mgs. I took the first dose about an hour and a half ago and I'm sitting here waiting for an allergic reaction to develop because I feel quite sure that it is bound to come. Either that or Tardive Dyskensia, which might happen ten years from now and stay for the rest of my life, or NMS which might kill me rather quickly and end the problems altogether. But I don't want to die; that's why I'm paying attention to whether it happens tonight or not. I don't like ancient medications. In fact, I really hate them. I hate the fact that I am on ANY new medications in addition to my self-contained Walgreens (they would go out of business if I ever got better), and I can't deal with the idea that this is what it has come down to. Hear the hallucinations all day or get NMS and die. Surely there is some alternative. And please Google "NMS" or Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome if you think I'm just paranoid. Probably taking the smallest dosage it comes in once isn't going to kill me, but nonetheless, I am disturbed by this experience.

In other news, my freakin' apartment building is getting TENTED to kill BEDBUGS brought here by the people who I call my neighbors, and it is being done for the second time in a year!! UGH. Just what I needed right now, a home full of poison! So I have to move out, with my cats, for three days this weekend. I can't even believe this nonsense. But I guess being tented is better than having bugs in your bed, though I'm sure the science on that comparison is debatable. Obviously, this is happening at the most fantastic time in my life.

In two weeks, or less, I will be back in college. I've been avoiding calendars, and I don't know what I'm going to do. The clock is counting down. If this ancient drug doesn't help me, I'll really be up a creek, and I'll probably never finish college.

My brother is missing again. He was staying in some motel, but now I and my mom don't know where he is, and he won't answer his phone, so I'm just hoping he's alive somewhere. Seriously. I don't think I'll survive if my brother dies. But when you spend your time drinking alone in flea bag's not a good situation and it's been going on for years.

I think I've had all the "stress" I can take, but I suspect much of this "stress" derives from my brain. I like the new doctor alright, but she doesn't know me so I don't know if she understands yet that I'm not always like this. Not all the time, anyway. I'm like a basket case seeing her every week; it's pathetic. I don't like being pathetic.

The auditory hallucinations are horrible. They never end. They go on every day, all day. It is all the same things as if I wasn't even taking medication, only it's not nearly as bad as it would be in that case. Today I was freaking out in the aforementioned Walgreens because of all their security cameras. I had to leave the place without my medication and go back for it later partly because I had to get to work and partly because of the cameras. Oh, and at the gyn doctor they had a camera. They had to take my picture for their "electronic records". Why do you need my picture to go with my yeast infection facts? I don't get it. What do they send it to the FBI if there's a theft of Diflucan? I tried to tell them they already had my picture with my yeast infection facts, but apparently it was not an electronic picture to go with my electronic yeast infection facts, so it didn't count.

Anyway...everything will be alright, someday, somehow. I don't know when or how, and that is the problemo.

On the radio, at the Walgreens, at Subway, at work, on the phone, at the doctor's they're talking about killing the Jews, and I know that Nazis control this world, but I  also know that it's a delusion, and yet it doesn't seem like one at all. And if it's not a delusion, then here I am again writing it all out to guarantee my death in a concentration camp as I am told all the time I am going to one to die. It's tiring. And when that's not it, I'm being tested for government secrets by people talking in code. All day, every day. It realloy would drive a sane person insane.

(I should add my neighbors aren't bad people, and the new shrink is nice to me and is just trying to help despite my complaints.)

Supposedly the way to help persistent psychotic symptoms when you're already on two atypical antipsychotics is to add a typical antipsychotic, much to my chagrin. But maybe, just maybe, it will work and it is only temporary anyway. I don't know what the long  term answer will be.

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Holding on....

Hold on, to me as we go

As we roll down this unfamiliar road

And although this wave is stringing us along

Just know you’re not alone

Cause I’m going to make this place your home

Settle down, it'll all be clear

Don't pay no mind to the demons

They fill you with fear

The trouble it might drag you down

If you get lost, you can always be found

Just know you’re not alone

Cause I’m going to make this place your home

Settle down, it'll all be clear

Don't pay no mind to the demons

They fill you with fear

The trouble it might drag you down

If you get lost, you can always be found

Just know you’re not alone

Cause I’m going to make this place your home
-"Home" by Philip Phillips
They played this song on a promo for the USA Gymnastics team that's been shown a lot during the Olympics. I like the song, and it makes me feel safer and calmer to hear it. I also have liked watching the Olympics, because in some ways it can be inspiring, and I need some inspiration right now.

I don't know where I'd be today without you readers. You really made me smile and feel better when I read all the comments on my last post, and I wanted you to know that I truly appreciate all of them. I haven't been able to keep up with other blogs lately; daily functioning is hard at this time, but I do care about you all and appreciate your blogs too. A big welcome to the new readers here!

It's been a rough time lately. Since my last post, I had some successes, such as doing all my tons, and tons of laundry at the laundromat on Saturday in one big, five-hour marathon of laundry. It was quite the task, with sweat pouring off me and the air conditioning not working well in the laundromat, when it was probably 98 degrees outside, and about 115 in there. But, I got it done! And that is what counts.

The next day I got all the laundry put away. Yes, this took a whole other long time period because I had to sort through old clothes and pick out things that are no good or that I don't like enough to wear anymore, so I could make room to actually put my stuff away. See I never put my laundry away. I just leave it in baskets, and then the baskets spread all around my bed room, with clothes spilling out so you can't see the floor anymore. I had broken glass on that floor before I cleaned, and found that out by stepping on the glass. But now it's clean, and now the clothes are put away. I bought a plastic set of extra drawers and a hamper thing at Walmart - pink, because my bedroom is pink and green and yellow. So that was done. And that was a relief. I then gave the clothes I didn't want (or that didn't fit) to my neighbor, Mary, who is a nice woman who has led a difficult life, and doesn't have much. I asked her what she wanted and she wanted most all of it, and said that it was like Christmas Day for her, so that made me feel glad to give the clothes away. I have difficulty parting with my belongings. It's because of all the times my things have been trashed when I was in a hospital somewhere or had to move and had nowhere to go. So I like to keep my things now. But I'm glad I gave those clothes to Mary.

On the Auditory Hallucination Front Lines: Life sucks here right now. I just today caught myself saying out loud that I'd kill myself if it doesn't get better. I have no desire to die, and I'm definitely not going to harm myself, but I really need some relief, and soon. I am hearing the word "Jew" approximately 100 times a day or more and hearing "die" just as often, along with things like a woman on the phone at work telling me to speak German, because she was a Nazi (in my delusional mind). But I keep going, smile, do my job, talk to people, try to help them as is my job, and I get to the doctor and the therapist, and I did the laundry and the apartment is clean. So my new doctor said I'm functioning, and she thinks (not knowing me very well) that I'm going to be fine. And she's seeing me every week right now. She talked yesterday about putting me on one of the first generation antipsychotics, much to my horror. I do not want to be drooling and doing the Thorazine shuffle around campus when school starts back up in a few weeks, nor do I wish to have Tardive Dyskenisia for life! So those drugs scare the bejezus out of me. But she is of the opinion that this would be the only next step to try.

I'm so tired of all of this. I'm tired of trying to explain it to no avail, because NOBODY ever understands what I am talking about except the people who read my blog. I am tired of trying to get help and finding out that there is probably no solution other than one I don't want. I am tired of trying to be hopeful and happy and doing so while I'm hearing people say, "You're dead, Jew" or "Die, Anne", going back to my delusion of being Anne Frank which I was supposed to be over by now.

Apparently my new doctor thinks that if you try new antipsychotics (of which I'm on two at the highest dosages), and they don't work, then you should add an old one. But this scares me.  The old ones can have lifelong, heinous side effects. I'm not too interested in drooling now. Maybe it didn't matter in the hospital seven years ago when they gave me Thorazine and Prolixin, but I don't much want to drool or shuffle right now. I'm in college, and I work, and I want to just freakin' function! Why is that too much to ask?

There are no easy answers. I am hoping my increased dosage of Latuda starts working by next week when I see the doctor again. I am just holding on. Thanks for being there.

One thing I did to help myself (and this was sort of my therapist's idea) was to make a book of simple instructions on things I should do when I get into the "negative" part of psychosis which is much like depression in that you get apathetic and have avolition. I made a scrapbook with cut out words and all it says is a simple instruction on each page. Page one says "get up, get up", and then another page says, "do a load of laundry", and "turn on music" is another one, "take shower" another one. It took two nights to make it and I'm glad I did it and hope it helps me keep my apartment clean.

Saturday, August 04, 2012


The other day I was in the grocery store, and I saw a man. A man like me, only more obvious about it. He was wearing huge, blue headphones, like the kind people wear when they work at an airport. His shirt and pants were dirty, and so was he. He looked a little bit off. I thought, "Oh, he's hearing voices". I thought about watching him to see if I had been right in this assumption, but then I got busy trying to get the stuff I went to the store to get. See, I understand about wearing headphones to to grocery store. I understand about having auditory hallucinations in the grocery store. These are things I've done. These are things that have happened to me. When I got to the front of the store, the cashier was yelling to her coworker, "I told you not to come over here because that guy that was in my line was crazy!" She said, "He was getting angry at us (herself and the bagger person in the checkout line), and he was throwing stuff into bags like a crazy person! My god, I was scared. I just saved your life by telling you not to come over here!" The bagger person added, "Yeah, that was scary and really weird!"

I couldn't help myself. "Are you talking about the man with the headphones on his head?" I asked. "Yes! Did you see him?! He was really crazy!" the cashier said. Hmmm. I said, "Well sometimes people are wearing headphones like that or they put things in their ears, because they're hearing voices with Schizophrenia, and they're trying to block out the sound."
The cashier said, "That's so weird!" I said, "Actually, it's kind of sad." The look on her face changed. She said, "Yeah, it's really sad."
I should have added, "Do I look scary to you in this dress, just coming from work?" because I know that would have made them think. I know they would have been confounded if I added, "I am just like that man". But I didn't. I just let it go.

I understand wearing things on your ears. I do it. I wear my Mp3 player to block out sounds all the time. I understand wearing dirty clothes. I wear unwashed clothes sometimes. I understand not taking a shower. I frequently go a couple of days, maybe more, without showering. I understand that man. I may not look like I understand, but I do. I am in a rough spot right now, and he was the person in the grocery store who I could relate to. I just wish everyone could understand it without having to go through it themselves.

Last week my case manager and I went to the Social Security office to deal with my ongoing drama with them. I gave them hundreds of pieces of paper, gathered from four different doctors' offices and three different pharmacies to prove money I had spent on co-pays and to prove that, indeed, I am, actually, disabled. It's funny how when you don't look sick, people never treat you like you are sick. They might treat you like you're lazy, or weird, or socially unacceptable, but not like you're sick. I had a friend once who was really sick with Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome, as I was too at the time, and someone said to her, the familiar, "But you don't look sick." She quickly responded, "Yes, and you don't look stupid, either, but that doesn't mean much." We were friends  through the internet and phone, and when she told me about this on the phone, I loved it and never forgot it. That was ten years ago.

Social Security says I don't look disabled because I have made "too much money" (over $1,000 in a month) in five separate months or something like that over the past seven years. So they are currently investigating to try to say that I am not disabled. I asked the man who is in charge of this, "How can you say I am not disabled?" and he said, "OH NO, we would never say that! We don't prove you're disabled, we just determine if you're making too much money to be on disability." Yes, I said, because you're not a DOCTOR you can't say I'm not disabled, when my DOCTORS say I am.

After we went to the Social Security office last week, my case manager came to my apartment. She has to, as every two months, she's required to do a home visit. I explained my medication isn't working well, my apartment is a disaster, and I don't want to have her come inside it. But she had to. "Oh my", she said when she saw it. But she was not judgmental, just concerned. She helped me pick up trash and throw it out, which is always humiliating, but she has a gentle kindness about her that makes it not so horrifying for someone to be doing this. She said, "I'm going to get you in to see your doctor right away. Your meds obviously aren't working". She then called the mental health center to try to get someone on the phone who could arrange this, but was unable to reach anybody. So she said she had to go back to her office. I waited to hear from her on the phone. I laid on the couch in my overwhelming mess of an apartment. I picked up trash and threw it out. I thought, "I'll never get this clean, and they're going to want to put me in the hospital now." In fact I had said to the case manager, "I just don't want to end up in the hospital".

She called back. She said, "I'm coming back to your apartment." Doomed, I thought. I know she's going to Baker Act me now. I'll be taken by the police. "I'm coming by myself," she said. "The doctor is out today and so is your therapist." I waited. She came back. I cracked open the door, full of paranoid suspicion. "What are you doing here?" She said, "It's just me, let me in". I let her in. She's known me for seven years. She's been in my apartment in all manner of messes and in cleanliness too. She's taken me to the hospital before, when I had command hallucinations telling me to kill myself. That was four and a half years ago, almost five years ago. She met me in the hospital in my worst state when she was assigned my case in 2005. I trust her. But it was true, she wanted to talk to me about whether I should go inpatient. I explained, if I go into the hospital they'll mess up all my meds, and start me on five or ten at once and I won't know which ones work and which ones don't work, because that is what always happens to me in the hospital. I explained, I have my cats here and if my mom came into feed them and saw what a mess my apartment is she might have me evicted. I couldn't let anybody else into this messy place but  my mom. I explained, I'm not suicidal.

So I didn't have to go to the hospital. When I told the case manager how my mom  tells me they're going to Baker Act me if they see my apartment like this, she said, "You can tell your mom that I saw your apartment and I'm not going to Baker Act you." *(the Baker Act is the involuntary commitment law in Florida).

That night I got my friend K. to go to the movies with me and we got some food at a Mexican place by the theater. It was a horrible, violent movie, and I would not have gone to see it if I had known that, so I just closed my eyes through half of it. It's called, Savages, so I guess I should have known.  I looked past my friend at the wall as she talked to me, but I tried to engage in conversation.

And the next day I went to work. When I got home from physical therapy, after work, I found a notice on my door that the mental health agency would be inspecting the apartments in my building the following Tuesday morning at 9:15 AM. This was on Friday evening.

Eviction. That is what came to mind. I've been evicted before for going into the hospital, and I've lost all of my belongings. I've been homeless, living in shelters three times, and in motel rooms and the back of a car other times. That was before diagnosis and medication, but it was still bad enough to terrify me for life of ever being in that position again. I like my things, and I have a lot of stuff in my apartment. I knew if I went into the hospital and got evicted, I'd lose all my stuff again. It's really hard to lose all your belongings. I never really got over the times it happened in the past.

So, I tried to motivate myself to tackle this giant mess alone, and I couldn't figure out where to start. I sat, confused, looking around. Then I picked up the phone. I called my friend K. and my sister J. and asked them to motivate me by calling to check whether I had cleaned certain parts of the place. I called my mom. I knew she'd berate me, which she did, but she also said she would help. So she came to the rescue, and we picked up all the trash and threw it out. I picked up all the clothes off the floor and organized them into dirty and clean piles in bins. We did the dishes, which involved me throwing out most of the dishes that were in the sink and washing what could be salvaged. I mopped the kitchen and the bathroom. I cleaned the bathroom well. The next day my mom rented a Rug Doctor and she came over and carpet cleaned the whole place which we had vacuumed with the new vacuum cleaner I got from my case manager via the mental health center. I was, and still am, in pain, from all this cleaning, but all last weekend we cleaned. I did most of it, but my mom helped a lot. She did tell me that I'm going to get evicted and she won't ever help me again if that happens, should I let the mess get like this again, and pointed out repeatedly that something is "really wrong" with me that I let it get like this at all, but I just ignored her and let her rant while she shampooed the carpets. My mom has a lot more energy than I do and I knew I needed her assistance.

Monday came. The apartment was clean. All clean. Monday I saw my therapist and my psychiatrist. My Latuda was increased to 160 mgs, and my Prozac increased to 60 (again, but this time I'm, not manic at all). Monday night I went and slept in a sleep lab so they could do a sleep study on me that I had been trying to avoid. They figured out that I have obvious insomnia and inability to reach deep sleep, but since I slept for four hours and didn't seem to have sleep apnea, they determined I don't need a machine, or at least that Medicare wouldn't pay for me to have one. So basically nothing was resolved with that.

I went to work every day this week, and was only late once. On Thursday, my day off, I met my friend L. for lunch and then I went to physical therapy, and after that I  treated myself to a dress I really wanted because it was on clearance now, and I had worked hard on my apartment. It feels nice to have a clean space to live in.

Every day at work, I hear the people talking about being Nazis and concentration camps, and how I'm going to "walk home", and I hear them saying that I should die. All day. All the time. I heard someone telling me to speak in German yesterday, which is a throwback to my old delusion that I did speak in German because I had to, to fit into the Illuminati/New World Order/Nazi planet where I believed I lived. The delusion is strong again, and so are the auditory hallucinations. I've also been communicating telepathically with Anderson Cooper and other TV peronalities when I watch television. I don't know if Latuda can make it all go away. But I'm here hoping it does.

Last night after work, I went to physical therapy, and then went and got a manicure, something I've started doing recently to feel better about myself. It kind of helps. Today, I have to go to the laundromat and work on my clothes so they're no longer piled in bins. One step at a time, and I can get through this somehow, stress and all.