Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Trying to be more mindful with cleaning, and living

I saw my therapist today, and we talked about mindfulness and what cognitive therapy is meant to do. I figured out when she asked me what stops me from cleaning or doing the dishes that it is anxiety I feel when I think about it. Somehow this relates to being a kid and being told nothing I did was good enough, on a regular basis, and being blamed for all the problems in the world my mom lived in. My therapist recommends thinking to yourself "I am one with this dish" as you wash a dish, and focusing on what you are doing rather than letting yourself get distracted from the task by your thoughts. I am probably not summarizing what she said very well here, but it was something like that.


My friend is coming to clean every week now, and that helps but I cannot really afford that. I wish the mental health housing agency that owns this apartment would help pay the cost, but they evidently won't ever do that. I am grateful my friend does the cleaning without judging me or making me feel overwhelmed. It's really help that I need, not just some luxury. But nobody who doesn't have an illness like Schizophrenia understands the apathy and anhedonia. In a support group online we were talking about having trouble making ourselves take care of our daily hygiene. There were people who had not brushed their teeth for months! This made me realize my tendency to avoid bathing is not as bad as it could be because I do manage to keep clean every couple days or so. I can't imagine not brushing my teeth for three or four months or spending a month without taking a shower. I think more research needs to be done into the negative symptoms of Schizophrenia, because that is the part that medication scarcely helps with, even though it is a major problematic area for many of us with the illness.

I guess I should be grateful that I am as functional as I am. I'm not where I'd like to be, but I'm not as bad off as I was a few months ago either. Clozaril does seem to help me, albeit slowly and not completely.

This time of year is always stressful. But I've enjoyed visiting with my grandfather the past couple days, as he is down here on a short vacation from his assisted living facility in Maryland. He is very funny, and has never lost his sense of humor or charm despite having Alzheimer's for years and losing his wife a year and a half ago, after 60 years of marriage. He says two women at the home where he lives have committed suicide since he left for a week, because they couldn't live without him. He is 81 but still hilarious. Not that suicide is ever funny. He also says that he wanted a dog and instead somehow he ended up with 7 kids and more than dog food to buy. Haha....

For the next five days I am off work, and I plan on keeping my place very clean, having some fun, spending more time with my grandfather and the reset of my family, visiting my agoraphobic neighbor, and trying to find things to do that do not cost money. I don't get paid for my time off work, but it is nice respite to have five days off.

I have some poems I've been working on and I might post a couple of them here after I work on them some more. I want to take a poetry workshop class my former professor and friend is teaching this semester at the school I work for, but it would mean needing to work four hours less than I do now. My boss wouldn't like that idea and I can't really afford it. I am still thinking about it though, because I want to learn to write good poems.

For now, you readers can let me know if you like anything about this blog by leaving comments and letting me know what you like or don't like. Please feel free to let me know any topics you would like to see covered here.

Happy Holidays!! I think Thanksgiving is really "Genocide Day" but in any event, I will do the traditional family visiting stuff. And people will say, again, "Why can't you eat turkey??!!" Heh.


 

2 comments:

pamelaspirowagner.com said...

Hi, jen daisybee, like you i dont eat turkey or any other food with faces, on T-day or any other time...but Tofurky suits me fine!

Sometimes i think the meds, which i take too, really don't do much of anything except please the docs, who want to think the meds do something so that they can think of themselves as RDs, real doctors and not "merely headshrinkers." God forbid any psychiatrist should do psychotherapy any longer or admit that there is much they do to patients that causes more harm than good.

Like giving us meds that makes reading impossible!

Anyhow, i enjoy your blog and your unwavering (one hopes) fortitude in swearing off suicide. Congratulations. By the way, i would love to see some of your poems. From one poet to another...

pam w.

Dysmonia said...

Haha, I, too, refer to Thanksgiving as "Genocide Day." (I also don't eat turkey.)

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