there’s no passion in sobriety

Yeah, so I did give up drinking as my New Year’s Resolution. I finally figured it’s time to kick it to the curb and go American History X on it. Wow that got racist fast.

Anyway, it’s been 6 days so I finally just decided, hey, I can do just one glass of wine. I deserve it for reasons xyz (REASONS INCLUDING THAT I GOT A REAL JOB FINALLY). And for the record I’ve been nursing this one glass for the past hour. But as I’ve been drinking this, and really wanting another glass/the whole bottle, it made me realize something: I can’t find passion without altering my brain, whether that’s smoking or drinking or whatever.  Continue reading “there’s no passion in sobriety”

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Let’s talk about physical disability

But really though, I know this blog is about mental illness, but speaking from experience, they go hand-in-hand. I don’t know a lot of people who get sick and they’re still in a cheery mood. I mean come on, you’re sick, you feel like shit and you can’t do anything and that can be just straight up depressing. You can’t see friends because you don’t want to get them sick and if you don’t live at home, mom and dad aren’t around to take care of you. 6+ hours of Netflix later… you begin to just feel bad for yourself. Feel worthless even though it’s not your fault that you’re stuck in bed being a completely unproductive member of society. Continue reading “Let’s talk about physical disability”

that time I ended my blog hiatus and stopped trusting medical doctors

Hey what’s up guys? I know I went on a bender and decided that I wasn’t going to blog anymore and never gave a reason. But let me explain. Have I lost everyone?

Long story short: I’m sick. About a month ago I started feeling unusually tired to the point that I was taking naps every day and getting 10 hours of sleep and still feeling tired. I attributed this to a medication I had recently increased the dose of so I stopped taking it. But it kept going.. and going.. I was sleeping my life away it felt like. And then other things started happening. I started getting weird slight vertigo, light headedness and overall muscle fatigue. My visual perception was off. I felt like I was in wonderland because everything looked so far away or too close or too small or too big than it should. I looked drunk most of the time because I was getting so clumsy (or more than usual). I felt so useless and started feeling depressed constantly. I was crying every day because I just felt like I couldn’t do anything anymore. I could barely keep my food down. Of course I asked Blob what it sounded like (yay for knowing nutritionists on a personal level) and he had no idea. I had no idea either. About 3 weeks into this, I finally decided to go to my doctor to get my blood tested because I figured that maybe I was anemic, or lacking some nutrient in my body. I was at the point where getting through my work shift was excruciatingly exhausting. Well here’s how the doctor visit went

Doc: what are you major symptoms?
Me: Well, I’ve been a lot more tired than usual, I can’t keep my food down and I feel weak and lightheaded. Can I get my blood tested? I think my vitamin D levels are low or I’m anemic or something.
Doc: Sounds like allergies. I’ve had a lot of patients have these kinds of symptoms for allergies. Drink more water and here’s a prescription for vertigo.
Me: Um… I don’t have allergies.
Doc: Then what do you think it is?
Me: (did you not just hear what I said?) I think I’m deficient in something. Can I please just get my blood tested????
Doc: …fine. But your insurance won’t cover it probably.

Did I mention that she didn’t even ask me about my diet (vegan), alcohol consumption, drug use, exercise, anything like that? Well I ended up getting my blood tested and guess who was right?

I don’t even need WebMD to figure these things out. My Vitamin D levels came back as low, and my white blood cell count abnormally high which “may indicate a viral infection.” BUT WHAT KIND OF VIRAL INFECTION WAY TO BE SPECIFIC. So here I still am with some kind of viral infection in my system and taking Vitamin D supplements which have helped a little, and now that the sun has decided to be a thing again I’ve at least managed to crawl out of my depression hole a little bit. Moral of the story? Don’t trust doctors. Go with your gut. But not mine because it’ll reject anything you put into it. Except bananas. I can eat an absurd amount of bananas without feeling sick. At least bananas are cheap so I can buy 5 pounds of them and not spend over $10 on my food for the week. Well thank god for that. By the way, did you know that bananas are actually a seed and not a fruit? Mind. Blown.

I don’t even really get depressed that much. Not depressed to the point where I wake up crying for no reason and shaking and throwing up almost daily. It’s been really great. Whatever this virus is, if you could kindly escort yourself out of my body… that’d be great. Depression for me usually last maybe a day and then the next day I’ll feel more than amazing. But this was persistent. Persistent, choking depression and anxiety that was taking over my life. Honestly, I blame the weather. I thought I lived in Maryland, not Seattle. ITS MAY WHY HAS IT BEEN RAINING AND COLD FOR THE PAST 3 WEEKS. But it’s sunny and WARM today. I’m enjoying my moment of just going outside and finally feeling the warmth of the sun hit my face.

I’m on my road to recovery, eventually. I’ve been able to play with my hula hoops a little more lately without tiring out within 30 minutes, some foods (besides bananas) don’t make me physically hurt and drain my energy, and that heavy depression cloud is starting to lift.

Some days are better than others. I’ll make it through with my unknown viral sickness. Thanks, Doc.

that time I found home, and other cool places

So hello from Colorado? From the other side? I haven’t called a thousand times because I don’t miss anything from the East Coast. Ok not EVERYTHING because obviously I miss some people (key word, “some”). But damn, let’s start off with the fact there is a hipster coffee shop every other block, breweries everywhere, and just look in any direction and you’ll see the mountains. For the first time in a long time, I feel like I came home.

Also, did you know that hula hoops are not just for the rave kids that I hate so much? (Not “hate,” but they’re pretty annoying and sorry but molly isn’t my thing, party on though guys) Well, when you have your friend’s girlfriend give you a light show with her LED hoops and you realize that you literally cannot do anything she’s doing, you start to reconsider this “hooping” phenomenon. So now I have my own hula hoop and I feel like I’m 5 years old again. AND IT GLOWS. JUST SAYING. So I’ll be honest, I think I can give up binge drinking and Netflix as long as I have some chill pills, a hoop, and beautiful mountains that I can go to whenever I want. This is it, guys. The Rockies are calling my name. I was gonna do an internship in Florida, but now, I honestly think I’ll be happier just living for a bit.

Let’s break down my trip into a few paragraphs. I know that not EVERYTHING about Colorado is amazing all the time, but the things I’ve discovered have been so eye opening to me. Baltimore is such a little closed off city in comparison. Unless you’re just about going to clubs and bars, there’s not much to do except work and go to school.

Boulder. Let’s start with that. A place that I know I could never afford but it’s literally surrounded by mountains. They’re within walking distance. We hiked up part of Chautauqua and you don’t even have to walk up that far to get a beautiful view of the city and the mountains.

And ok I know I said I’ll take the chill pills and hoops over drinking and Netflix, but this really is the best place to find good beer. I don’t like foam on anything. Lattes, beer, etc. Never appealed. But then I tried Left Hand Brewery’s Nitro Milk Stout on tap and I entered an entirely new world of “foam.” Literally like ice cream.

But also check out the foam on that latte. I take back everything I’ve ever said about foam being gross.

Ok, I know that not everyone really wants to hear about my trip just because, you know, I never find any interest in anyone else’s vacations but maybe that’s just me. Like, when Blob went to Belize, I don’t think I even really asked him about it (Did I?). Maybe because I was just pretty jealous that I was stuck in Maryland in the cold and he was hanging out on a beach. Then again, he did get food poisoning. I guess my jealousy radiates (sorry Blob). But I think I’m happier to be around the snow and mountains than some tourist trap beach with sand fleas. In the end, it works out.

I’m just not happy in Maryland. I’m just not happy with my life right now (complaint moment). School is terrible and stressful when combined with working, and for some reason, I just can’t find myself doing things that I would like to be doing with my life. I’m not living right now. I’m just cruising on a huge ship to nowhere and praying to every god from every religion that I graduate from college in May so I can get on with my life and start actually living and experiencing everything our world has to offer. And not just the course catalog.

So I guess it’s official. The next time I come out here, it’s for good. I’ve never come to a town where suddenly felt like “hey, I could stay here for the rest of my life.” I know I don’t want to stay in Maryland forever. 22 years has been more than enough. I’ve seen the East Coast, it’s cool, but I’m ready to move on, to reinvent myself, and to be in a happier place. Yes yes I know I’m talking about a geographic cure and that my problems will follow me wherever I go, but honestly? Location makes a huge difference. Being around beautiful things makes life feel more beautiful and worth it. Out here, I haven’t laughed as hard as I ever have, or even just let myself go with dancing. It’s a vacation and I know it won’t last forever, but I’ve never felt so ready to be alive.

(Also, cause why not, here’s our dorky craft beer brewery selfie)

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that time I got writer’s block

I really have writer’s block guys. Like, I’ve started the beginning of this post about 5 times already and can’t think of anything witty or worth writing that anyone would be interested in reading. Maybe NOW I’ll actually start losing followers. Maybe I’m just brain dead from my episode last week in combination with cramming for THREE exams this week. As much as I did study, I realized that overstudying is a real thing. In high school they always warned us of “overstudying” which I thought was total bullshit because how can you OVER study? If you know that material page by page and can recite it without anything in front of you to the point that all you can think about is the information you’ve studied, then I think you’re more than set for a test.

Turns out this is definitely not a good thing.

I overstudied, but I absorbed absolutely nothing. Man, why did I take all classes this semester in which my grade is reflected by my test taking? I can’t even take a buzzfeed quiz without getting distracted or disliking my result. I can write a paper no problem. Last semester I went insane with writing. As in, I wrote a 10 pager AND a 5 pager in about 7 hours. Cited sources, bibliography, background research and all. Except I didn’t proofread at all. But I got an A. That’s like, college mastery if college was ONLY papers. Most of the posts on my blog I write in less than an hour, sometimes half an hour. I guess the content must be alright if you guys are still here reading it.

Wow, writer’s block is terrible. I’m writing about writing. I have to keep you guys coming back somehow though, right? Honestly, if you give me a prompt I will write a post about that. As long as it doesn’t involve D Trump’s hair or “Feeling the Bern.” Thanks, I know where I stand politically, I’d rather sit out here in the sun and not scroll through the internet finding more and more redundant articles about what political figure did or said what or how the Trump’s hair looks today (honestly though, why does he not have a stylist with the amount of money he has? Unless he thrives on making his own style decisions… in which case, if you can’t even make your hair look okay because of personal choice, I won’t vote for you. Personal appearance is a make it or break it, let’s be real. Everyone voted for JFK because he was a handsome young candidate. And he was actually a good president.*)

Oh here’s something: So it’s been like, 80 degrees all this week. It’s still technically winter and I’m confused but considering how happy the sun and warmth makes me, I’m not complaining too much. Sun brings the Alice in me out. I’ve been wearing my sundresses and heels everyday. But today I walked out of the house in a skirt that was kind of flowy (yes that’s a word spellcheck, don’t tell me I’m making things up), realized there was a slight breeze, but nothing too bad. But of course, if the wind is 5mph at my house, it’s 20 at school. So yeah, I’ve been that girl walking around campus keeping my hands by my side nonchalantly to make sure I don’t flash anyone (at least I’m wearing cute undies and not grannie panties. That would just be embarrassing). The odds of me pulling a Marilyn Monroe today are slightly high. It’s not like it’s never happened before.. flashback to standing on top of the building of the Newseum in D.C. and my skirt went up all the way. At least I was, like, 13 and in middle school and not 22 and on my college campus.

And in other news, Alice is back. She is alive. She’s weak, but she’s still here! Proof? Blob. Alice loves working with Blob for some reason. She must like him even though apparently she doesn’t. He definitely seems like her type but you know what, she also tried to convince herself that she liked my ex-boyfriend also and that did not end well. Anyway, I transitioned for the first time in a few months last week. It was very brief, and thank god she didn’t try to drink anything (Alice is more of an alcoholic than I am) because I’m trying to stay sober and not fuck with my blood pressure. I was there in a depersonalized state though. She seemed exhausted. What the hell has she been up to? Her wonderland must be falling apart. I can feel her as a part of me still. My hypomania has come back in small bits, just like how I felt when I felt fully integrated. My libido is back, I love my lingerie again, no pants are the best pants, I’m craving meat again (I really should get my iron levels checked, a bacon cheeseburger sounds so good right now) and damn my legs look good and I know it.

Or maybe I’m just happier being sober.

*I know I said I wouldn’t talk about politics, but JFK was a pretty damn charming man. Get real guys.

that time Scrubs defied my expectations of hospitals

You have no idea how long it took for me to come up with that title. Okay, it took me the 36 hours I spent in the hospital to come up with it. My back up title was “that time everyone thought I was dead.” Both are true though. Blob’s phone was apparently blowing up with texts from my coworkers asking if I was okay*

I guess this trip to the hospital should have been my “wake up call” or when I finally got an epiphany and decided to change my life. Stop drinking, be happy, appreciate how precious life is and all that bullshit that people say they feel after they come close to dying. I don’t know if I almost died or not. I asked but they wouldn’t tell me (seriously, wtf? It would be nice to know how bad my condition is). But I guess when your blood pressure is 78/42 and you have an IV in your arm while drinking charcoal, maybe that’s an indicator of how serious your condition is, but then again it could have also been a precautionary measure or they were blowing it out of proportion or who knows what. Ok I guess you’re wondering what happened. I’m not going to go into complete details for the sake of putting this on the internet where everyone can see this.

After questioning whether or not Alice was still a part of me, and feeling pretty down about losing a part of myself, I sunk back into my depression. More of a bipolar depression. One minute I was fine, and then I fell into a hole of binge drinking to push away the depressive feelings I felt coming on. And then I was fine again. And then Alice put some pills in my hand and I was texting an ex boyfriend telling him what I had just done**.

About 20 minutes later, 2 cops and 6 paramedics were in my living room and I found myself strapped into an ambulance and being forced to drink charcoal. Honestly, I’m glad I was so plastered for that moment because I’m pretty sure charcoal tastes terrible and that getting an IV inserted into your arm is probably pretty unpleasant. I must’ve looked fantastic***I blacked out after that. I guess I fell asleep. And then I woke up at 6am when my blood pressure monitor started blaring because my blood pressure had dropped to 78/42. If you don’t know what that means, my blood pressure (which is typically on the lower side) jumped back to a healthy 110/70something today.

But ok seriously, every medical show has defied every expectation of hospitals. Except for stereotypes. Those are totally real. Doctors never go see their patients. No one is actually friendly. The scrubs they give you to wear are meant for a 600 pound man and they’re made out of paper. That token black nurse with a prayer book is actually a terrible person and likes to threaten you with God and yells at you when you don’t make eye contact with her (seriously, just like Laverne from Scrubs but awful). And if you’re there for an overdose, no one treats you like you’re human or actually cares that you’re there or that you’re vegan and hungry so they give you bacon egg and cheese, and tuna fish sandwiches for meals. Hospital food is the devil on a plate. But desperate times come for desperate measures when the only thing in your stomach is water and charcoal and none of the doctors actually care that even got food in the first place.****

And going off that rant of vegan food, I was beginning to doubt being vegan. Did I really want to do this? I wanted to eat meat and cheese to spite all the vegans that make me hate being vegan. You’re still here, Alice, you’re doing this to me. I can’t even be mad honestly just because it’s a sign that she’s still there. Just please stop letting me do that, Alice. It’s time for a vegan detox.

Anyway. I know that I’m not better. I know that whatever I did was not a smart decision and I know that I want to keep living without being attached to wires. I know I need to take a break from drinking. I know a lot of things now. I haven’t made any decisions except to not drink this week due to doctor’s orders. I know I shouldn’t do any exercise or heavy lifting for a week (so long, gym body for a week). I know my short-term memory is shot. I know that I need to change some things in my life.

I also know that I, Emily, am very comfortable coming home after a long couple days and changing into sweatpants and a baggy t-shirt.

*Thank you everyone, even if you don’t read this. And thank you, Blob, for bringing me super healthy vegan food today after you knew that I ate gross hospital not-vegan food. And for having to talk to my mom via text. I’m so sorry. Lastly… thank you Mike for calling 911. I might not be writing this post if you hadn’t.

**This was not suicide and I was evaluated by a psych person at the hospital to make sure I was ok.

***Blob said I looked “fantastic”…sarcastically. I was covered in charcoal and a drunken mess. Go me for being that drunk bitch in an emergency room.

****the vegan police are most definitely after me now, and I’m going to retire into eating nothing but kale, tofu and pumpkin seeds for the next month.

that time I might have killed a personality

I know for a fact that NO ONE is going to understand this post. Unless you have DID/multiple personality disorder, or any type of dissociative disorder. If you do have one, can we talk and be best friends because unlike my depression, which feels so alone but you aren’t, when you have DID, you are definitely alone. Most doctors don’t even believe it’s a real disease and most insurance companies won’t cover your therapy if you get the diagnosis for it. Wow we have a really messed up healthcare system. DID is real! We’re not in the 1960’s anymore, America.

There’s also no known treatment for DID. Personalities are not exactly something you can “treat” with medication because the personalities ARE you (oh god, I’m getting back into the “you are not your disease” rant again, except that with DID, you kind of are your disease because your disease is literally you). Sure, doctors try to give out anti-depressants and anxiolytics or even antipsychotics to treat it because hey, why not. I guess it makes sense because alternate personalities serve a purpose: protection. Kind of convenient though, don’t you think? Example: I start to feel anxious. I, Emily, hate feeling anxious, so I transition into another personality so that Emily doesn’t have to deal with feeling anxious. It’s just another form of disassociation like drinking or drugs etc. But my mind does it for me. Kinda cool.* Kinda totally not.**

So the whole point of this post is to tell you about how I might have accidentally killed one of my personalities. But before I jump into that, maybe I should explain what DID is because everyone thinks we’re crazy people with a million personalities that jump out at any second and I can go from being Emily to some dude who believes he’s a Vietnam vet (that’s actually from United States of Tara, but that drastic of a transition is a real thing. I have a personality named “Matilda” who’s a 5 year old girl). DID stands for Dissociative Identity Disorder. What a mouthful and a pain in the ass to keep typing out. So DID is a dissociative disorder, let’s start with that. Disassociation is a form of panic, in which you don’t want to be there, so your mind takes you elsewhere so that you don’t have to experience what is going on. A lot of people do it. A drink or 2 or 3 or more at the end of the day so that you don’t have to think about your shitty day anymore. Taking pills so that you can get through the day physically but not mentally. It’s like that. Even daydreaming is a form of disassociation. With that in mind, instead of taking something, when I don’t want to feel the way I’m feeling, I transition into another person who can feel that for me. Here’s a couple of them: Isabella. Depressed, self-destructive. But honest. She’s also 14. Emily is not any of those and I can’t feel that way, so Isabella does it for me. Alice: hypomanic, full of herself, short-fused, and will f**k anything that moves. Delilah is quiet, shy, but sweet and kind. I guess I can be that way, but she apologizes for everything. She doesn’t have a mean bone in her metaphorical body. These are the 3 most prominent personalities for me so let’s stick with that. This post would be too long if I described all of them and I also don’t know how many there are, or even everything about them***

One of my New Year’s Resolutions was to kill Alice. She was starting to ruin my life. I was more Alice than I was Emily or anyone else. On an almost daily basis, I was transitioning into Alice. She was drinking me into a coma, eating meat to spite me (a Natty Boh sausage, really, Alice?), screwing and flirting with other guys to piss off my now-ex-boyfriend, and current male companion. She sounds awful and it makes me sound like an awful person, but when I say it wasn’t me, seriously, it wasn’t me.

But semi recently, I’ve felt integrated. I haven’t transitioned in a couple months now and I have the ability to feel emotions again. It sucks, but I supposed it’s better than my alters messing my life up. But somehow, in the midst of that, I think I killed Alice. I don’t understand it at all because if she’s integrated into being a part of me, how did I manage to kill a part of actual Emily? This is so confusing. But all the things that Alice felt for me, and I was starting to feel as well, have seemed to just up and leave. Just about 3 weeks ago I was feeling great about myself. I felt sexy, confident, my self-esteem was way better, I had a healthy libido, I could feel angry, I could express my feelings. What happened?

I’ve become a hermit again. Instead of wearing sexy overpriced lingerie on an everyday basis and around the house, I’m back to coming home from a long day and snuggling in my sweatpants and a baggy t-shirt. I’ve been eating my feelings or starving myself because I hate how I look. I can’t talk about my feelings. I can’t feel anger. I have absolutely no libido. And when I say “no libido,” I mean, like, sex sucks. I can’t get into it, can’t get aroused, or even enjoy the feeling. It’s easy for men. Just take that little blue pill and you can bang the crap out of anything all night. There’s nothing like that for women. BDSM is the worst thing ever now. The last time I was involved in a scene, I started crying because I hated the pain. I can’t orgasm. I’m tired of apologizing every time I can’t even make myself pretend to enjoy it. Every aspect of Alice’s personality that was coming out in me is gone.

And then last night, it hit me. Alice is gone. Did I kill her? Did she kill herself out of spite of being integrated?****Sounds like an Alice thing to do. But as I think about this more, I suppose it’s possible that she got out of the integration. She is her own separate personality again. I’m fragmented into simply Emily and Alice. What makes me think that?

I felt her last night. In the past, before I would transition, I could feel them. I would hear their voices in my head whenever I’d start to feel a negative emotion. It’s like someone banging on your front door maliciously and then eventually, they take an axe to it to break in, and suddenly, I’ve gone from being Emily to being someone else. This didn’t happen last night. I felt her though. I could feel the knocking, feel the pressure in my head of another person trying to crawl out into the world. But she didn’t. She stayed put. Why are you doing this, Alice?

I sense mayhem. Come back, Alice. I love you. I miss you.

*Alice has gotten me through so many work shifts when I have a panic attack. Then again, she’s also a total bitch to everyone around her so I can imagine it makes for an unpleasant shift for my coworkers. Sorry, guys.

**One time, Isabella threw my phone into a river. Kinda totally not cool.

***Apparently I have a personality named “Tyler,” according to Alice. Tyler is a guy and also a sex god. As far as I know, he’s never made an appearance. He kind of sounds like Tyler Durden based on what I heard (in an audio recording I set up before transitioning) from Alice.

**** In previously mentioned audio recording, she said she never wanted to be integrated because she wanted to be her own person. I guess I get her point. It must suck to be a personality that has no body to call its own.