Monday, November 2, 2009

So that's where my limit was all those years

My limit, I found it, somewhere around working an average of 15 hours a day, seven days a week. I am actually grateful because I finally found it! When they ask you all those funny questions at the mental health center, I always love the ones that hover around "is she or isn't she bipolar" or "are these stimulant meds too much for her". A current one that I get a lot is "so...are ya sleeping much?". Um no, I know it's your job and thanks for being thorough but when a person is already frustrated that they have too much on their plate, and would LIKE to be sleeping, it's kind of annoying to have to answer that question every time they have to come to visit you. Do I want my mental health providers to be less thorough? No, not really, I just want my life to be less crazy, but my choices I made a long time needed to be followed through on. I could have chosen to drop everything, or continue everything to natural conclusions, and I chose natural conclusions for a variety of reasons that mostly revolve around what others might think of me. So I have to keep pushing through the misery for a little longer...and if this says anything about my determination, I have pushed past the sleep-inducing properties of generic Remeron many a night recently. I have to just keep going a little longer and once a week I have someone asking me if I'm sleeping more.

The stimulants are not keeping me awake, and it is unlikely I am bipolar. But night after night I push my way past a drug that is famous for knocking people out, for just a few more hours of work time. My prescriber gave it to me on purpose hoping it would help me be a little less ambivalent about sleeping and eating...and yes, it helps me eat more (I'm kind of microscopic anyway and had lost a few pounds that I didn't have to spare). And it does make me sleepy...but I can't afford to spend more time sleeping right now.

A few nights I have literally fallen asleep sitting up, stuck in that weird limbo between wake and sleep where you start to see things that only exist in dreams because you're allllllmost totally asleep but your eyes are open and your conscious mind is fighting for control so you happen to be looking at the television and things are appearing on the television, and then appear to be coming toward you out of the television and your brain is having this weird dialogue with itself "I'm asleep so I know that doesn't exist even though I'm terrified because it's coming out of the television toward me, dammit wake up, wake up, you're sitting up...NO, can't wake up, aliens coming out of the television are way more relaxing and interesting than this stupid budget...". Usually my chin finally abruptly hits my chest and I wake up from the impact and start the whole thing over a few more times before I finally just lay over to one side, pull up a blanket and go to sleep.

This is not a cycle of existence that I am enjoying, and that lack of joy actually motivates me to work harder to reach the ends of these things faster...the fact that I care at all about that lack of joy is actually a sign of progress. And this weekend marked the blessed end of one of my biggest projects, at least until next year. The last day played out beautifully but I didn't get to enjoy it because I was so stressed out...but it's over, and I will have more time to rest even though I still have a lot of work to do. The rest of my projects are more about me though, than anything that others are depending on, so I feel a little less pressured. I know that's kind of messed up's true...I'm just glad the pressure has released a little now, I can debate my motivations and self-esteem later.

I used to hate homework and now, relative to everything else I've been working on, it feels like vacation and I'm a little bit happy to be chipping away at it.

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