shrink-wrap, feb 26th

45-60 minutes of aerobic exercise 5 times a week.  Or Zoloft.  Wellbutrin probably caused my tinnitus; it’s not unlikely it would make it worse. Zoloft has obvious benefits, but there are side effects he doesn’t even want to tell me about. And there’s no really good science about how these things affect your body’s own ability to do stuff, to mobilize it’s own brain neuro-health, after medium to long-term use.

First thought: Oh god, I’m never going to be able to muster the internal energy to do this.

His suggestion: find a buddy…bla bla bla….

I’m thinking I’m looking at this wrong. A bit like the joke about the shoe salesmen in africa. “There’s no chance of sales here, no one wears shoes!” v. “This is great! There’s TONS of potential here! NO ONE WEARS SHOES!!!!”

I’ve just earned/ won/ been given a medically sanctioned, interventionist mandate to do 45 minutes of exercise 5 times a week. Not only that — but if I do that, I can throw the need to do drugs away.

big problem? Finding the motivation to start and sustain the program for four weeks. Apparently once you hit four weeks, it becomes kinda routine. shrink suggestion was to watch “The Wire.”  We’ll see. Outside is good, when possible.

The one I have to watch out for, the thought I need to learn how to quash, is “wouldn’t it be easier just to be dead?”


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

ted talks

andrew solomon — book on his depression, excellent description. Book on parents dealing with extraordinary children, the point of “forging your own meaning.”

some other chick — on “getting what you want” —   the idea of “activation energy” meets the fact of “you’re never going to feel like it.”   (sidebar — stop saying you’re fine – comfort stamps out ideas, throws on the emergency brake)

ergo, getting what you want is “simple”  — but it’s not easy.

five second rule– have to bond impulse to action within 5 seconds, or you’re toast. The emergency brake goes on.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

help me rhonda

I walk. I try this and that.

I’m a mess.

A lot of it is stress about money.

titles:  let’s talk: depression, stig-me, and working up to the harder way out

blue 238

It’s All In Your Head: Depression, Stig-Me, and shepherding / processing yourself into a harder way out.

a funny thing about depression is that your habits deploy in response to it pretty early. So you find coping mechanisms — ones that are sure to fail you later on in your life — and you turn them into very very solid habits. Then when you need to unwire these, they are like bear-trap solid and tight. You become a prisoner of your own brain’s tremendous capacity to turn habits into coping mechanisms.

can’t write more today. It’s a bad day.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

On “thought-mines.” Or, …. “How Many Psychiatrists……

Does it take to change a light bulb? Only one, but the light bulb has to really want to change???”

I’m here today because I know I need to change. Things that normally move and motivate me are having trouble getting me rolling. For example, I went for a x-c ski today. That usually gets me going. But today I could barely slog through the drifts, I could barely keep going. I had to stop a whole bunch of times, look at the ski, breathe in, will myself forward. I’m not great at that. I’m better when life draws me forward. But it isn’t right now. I’m not sure why. Well, I am sure a bit. I’m a prisoner of fear. Anxiety. Depression. Loneliness. Delusion.

I think I want to / have to write a book about the process I’m trying to engage in in order to effect some behavioural and attitudinal change. SO I thought I could write raw material to this blog, and not have to hide it under a rock, or in my bed or down my pants or something.

There’s a bunch of stuff in my head I want to write about, I guess. Maybe then it will stop rattling around and maybe start mobilizing into a form that could help somebody else. Who knows? Once, at a university convocation I was at, the university principal told an anecdote about a guy who realized that there was no such thing as a completely useless person. That person realized he could at least serve as a really terrible example. That’s kind of how I feel about this project. It’s possible that it will be composed of equal parts what-to-do and the example of how-not-to-do-it. I guess we’ll just have to see.

The thought that prompted me to write today, that I didn’t want to lose hold of, was about “thought-mines.” These are things like land-mines – things that you step on somewhat innocently, but that blow up and damage you. I have at least a couple of these — I had a second thought that some of these turn into quagmires, but I think that’s for a different post. The “thought-mines” I keep myself stepping in are things like (1) I’m going to win the lottery and everything is going to be ok. (I actually believe this. I pray about it, see it as reasonable. I even negotiate with God about how I”m going to handle it, help the world, prevent it from ruining my life and the lives of those around me. After a bit of finger-painting like this, it just feels normal that I”m going to win and do fine and the world is going to be a better place because of how magnanimously everything is going to work out.

Featured image

Holy gawd. I think maybe “thought-mines” come with a kind of poison or toxicity that gets released in your brain and rolls  around in there, making a lot of noise, and keeping you from really figuring out what’s going on. It fosters a kind of auto-paralysis — which in the great scheme of things might not be too bad a thing if it just happened once, for a limited time. But when you turn a “thought-mine” into a habit or a safe place — well, then you’ve kind of set yourself up to be stalled right in the middle of a whole lot of traffic, and on a road that is supposed to take you to the next places in your life,.

What are some of my other thought mines?  I don’t know. For a while one of them was that some kind of deity or outside force or power was going to come along and rescue me from myself and/or affirm me in that expression of that rather elusive self. You can see that this is a bit similar to the thought mine about the lottery. I had another analogous one that had me believing that the perfect partner was going to come along and do the same thing.

This is more than a little embarrassing to write down.

Now playing the lottery, believing in God or hoping for a swell partner — these in and of themselves really aren’t terrible things. What screws things up is what my mind / heart / soul / body does with these things. My headspace kind of traps me in them — they are like safe places to stand. But they don’t go anywhere. I feel like they are going to be elevators, but they just end up being cages or boxes that I step into and the doors close. When I open them again, there I am, in exactly the same place as before, and with nothing ventured, nothing gained, nothing solved, nothing truly experienced.

“the unlived life is not worth examining….”

I think I’m at a point where I can’t really afford standing in these cages anymore. I’m not sure how to change, or go forward, but I do think that something that might help me learn what the next step is going to be would be to become aware of the fact that I’m doing it — that I’m stepping on a thought mine and blowing myself up into a cloud of paralysis thought-goo. If I can just stand back, have a laugh at my good old history-of-this-particular-bad-habit, give myself a bit of slack to understand — this is how I used to manage being afraid – and step somewhere new, well, maybe I’d get myself into more of a process and a momentum that would help me to stare down, process, mediate or confront this fear I have of, well, everything…

There’s something I’m avoiding big-time right now. I don’t know why. I never know why.

I think I need some little trick to remind me that I want to be better. That I need to be better. That I can CHOOSE to be better and at least feel better about the process of living, even if I’m screwing up left and right, top and bottom about the “how, why and what” of how I’m doing it.

The funny paradox of mental illness is that I’m beginning to think you have to mobilize a lot of mental resources in order to fight it.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

It is better to….

Light a single candle, than to curse the darkness.

You know, I first ran across this idea in a Peanuts cartoon:

Don’t you love the web? You can find a Peanuts cartoon you loved when you were like 10. Wow. Charles Schultz was an absolute genius. He had such a way of getting inside both the human and the humanity of us all. That’s something I feel like I’ve always wanted to be part of. So, I’m starting this blog as a way of trying to move towards lighting more candles in my life, and maybe a few in others’ as well. Maybe even help others give it a go. I’ve always loved words and writing. Maybe the blog exercise will help me focus on what’s positive and help me to move forward.

Can you tell this isn’t exactly a well-thought-out entry?

I’m blessed in so many ways. And like it or not, I have some really positive things to share – perspectives, thoughts, hopes, experiences — and some whopper mistakes. I think at some level I’m inspired to write because of that saying about “no one in the world is completely useless — they can always serve as a completely horrible example.”

Bring it on. Once more into the breach, dear friends, once more….

Thanks for reading. And let’s try to light candles. Here, there, everywhere. There’s an awful lot of stupid darkness out there. Hmmm. Out there? Yeah, right. There’s darkness right in me.


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment