Check Out New Blog

I am thrilled to share that I have launched a new site to go along with a guide I am writing detailing how I managed to make changes to my physical and mental health, leading to some very profound experiences.

I decided to share my passions and use it as an opportunity to help others who are looking to change for the better, detailing exactly how I got to this point.

With great happiness… I announce my new blog titled:

becomingtheverybestyou.com

There I will share my experiences, positive affirmations, and mindfulness… as well as exercise and weight loss information. I will continue journaling, writing poetry, and sharing other mental health information here at thebipolarmuse.

I hope to see you there!!!

Writing My First Book!

I am happy to tell you that I have been writing like a lunatic on what will be my first book! I have been in love with words for as long as I can recall, and I decided that I will never know how I can do writing and publishing if I never give it a try! Of course, writing here is my first love, but writing for a new project is very exciting. I am going to be setting up an account on UpWork, and Fiver, to write for others and help them to acquire their own little slice of the blogging world. Both of these projects are very exciting for me, and while I am terrified, I am confident that with determination, and an insane amount of hard work, I WILL be successful in the way that is perfect for me!

I cannot begin to tell you how much passion I have to share my experience with others… to give them hope in various ways… to let them know they are not alone in their struggles. Perhaps that seems obvious considering the subject matter of this blog, mental health, bipolar disorder specifically. Even more exciting, I will detail each step I took to get to the beautiful place I am at … my state of Becoming the best me. In doing so, it is my hugest hope that others will be able to make life changes for the better, and that they too will experience the amazing gift of the present moment given by finding what they are passionate about… and then doing them! Everything else in the world will start lining up.

I want to share how I came to understand this, because I know it can truly help so many people. Life is short, and it is a beautiful ride that nobody should miss out on, yet, many do. Life is very hard, but it is so worth the effort. I want everyone to experience happiness, peace, love, contentment… hope. My own experience is one I can draw from, and though my life has been very difficult in the past, by incorporating these four principles; being positively mindful, zero judgement, and love & forgiveness, I became passionate for myself and found different things in life I am passionate about… leading me to the greatest state of “Being” I have ever experienced.

This amazing state of “Being” is something every single person should grow to attain… I cannot explain how wonderful it feels to work on and remove the mental baggage I carried with me for so many years. In losing that mental baggage, I have been able to get other areas of my life better together, and this “better forward motion” marches on. With this wonderful result, I must share it with others, and so I write… my very first book. Exciting stuff right?! I think so….

So, not only am I writing for the book, I will be starting a 2nd blog specifically for the book I am writing. I am very excited to get it rolling… as I look forward to being a positive light for others who are still languishing in the darkness…

Treadmill or Dreadmill? Improve your relationship with your treadmill.

I am one of (likely) very few people who actually loves jumping on the treadmill. In fact, most people think of theirs as a “dreadmill”… sitting in the corner of some obscure room, collecting dust and cobwebs, emanating a spooky “creature of the night” vibe, just waiting to become the death of them. It is a reminder of just how long a single minute, just 60 measly seconds, can feel like a long moment in Hell. How did I get so lucky to have a love affair with my treadmill?

I make my treadmill work for me instead of the other way around.

Using my treadmill as a tool to escape… in particular, a tool to escape into a good book. I have found myself completing a half marathon walking in various speeds and inclines, simply because the book I am reading is so captivating, and the last thing I want is to stop reading… and so instead of jumping off my treadmill to continue reading I honor my agreement with myself: If I want to read, I have to do it on the treadmill… and so I walk.

Now, I have not always had such love for the human hamster wheel, I certainly have had my share of a “dreadmill” stand-off… especially as I introduced running to my routine. Though I would come to dread jumping on that torture trap, I came to realize that the treadmills of today are not your Mom’s treadmill and to put it simply, treadmills are not all created equal. If you want to make your cardio time on your treadmill feel productive and enjoyable (imagine being out in nature… it doubles as great meditation practice), definitely do your research and find the best treadmill that money can buy for the price-point you can afford. You don’t have to be miserable on your treadmill any longer!

Take time to research the different models and all the bells and whistles that are important to you. If you want not only an incline setting, but also a decline setting, that is possible… as is a treadmill with a great shock system to help protect the joints in your body. Many treadmills have built in programs with different workout options from a simple walk, to intense inclines to help you burn fat and work your cardiovascular system. I’ve even seen systems with two tracks, one for each foot to land on, simulating trail walking/jogging. No matter what you are looking for, with a little patience and due diligence, you are sure to find it.

Those bells and whistles I mention do not come free and you will find that the more intricate the treadmill, the more money you will be spending. Personally, a higher quality product with few “extra’s” is the way to go… the motor will be strong, the unit stable, the incline will be sufficient, and the built-in programs definitely give you a run for your money (pun intended). This is the type of treadmill I went for. The display isn’t too huge, so I use an over the door hook to hook onto the display in order to hold my Kindle for my reading sessions. For the most part, I am able to do intervals, even full on jogging, and my Kindle doesn’t budge.

If all else fails, and you still feel as though the treadmill is a dreadmill, put it in front of a T.V. and do your treadmill training while watching your favorite television programs. This should prove to be a great distraction, possibly even helping you look forward to your next treadmill session. Working out doesn’t have to be miserable, nor does it have to be at full intensity. Just 30 minutes a day will improve your cardiovascular health dramatically, help you lose weight, reduce stress, boost both your mood and your energy levels, and improve your memory, productivity, and creativity. That sounds like a fantastic trade-off for just 30 minutes of your time, especially when those 30 minutes can be a simple brisk walk… you don’t have to put out max effort to reap the rewards!

So no matter how you feel about jumping on that human hamster wheel, you certainly owe it to yourself. Find what helps you to endure just 30 minutes… and watch as you add time to your lifespan… You are worth the effort!

What Are Your Passions?

As time goes by and life moves forward, I have found the secret to living a content, thriving, and happy life lies in where you put your time. It is easy to get sucked in and allow negativity to govern your mind. This is absolutely exhausting to me, so I have focused on brainstorming ideas that bring me a peace that I have not known. I am so excited about this that I have begun writing about it, and as I get closer to completing my writings, I will share what I have learned with you.

What are you passionate about? Do you love getting outside for hikes, jogs, or simply to walk and take in your surroundings? Perhaps you love to cycle, or go to the gym… no matter what it is that you enjoy doing, just Do IT. I have found that if I can become passionate about more things in my daily life, and add these things to my daily activities, life becomes bearable… more-so than making it bearable, it makes life fun and enjoyable!!

Personally, I love to get out for simple walks around my small town, or head towards nearby mountains for some awesome hikes. These activities release dopamine, and endorphins… our feel good chemicals… which make me not only feel happy on a mental level, but also make me feel good as a whole. I wanted to create these feel good moments without needing to leave my home, because unfortunately, health conditions can at times keep me from getting outside. So how can I produce the same “feel good” emotions while being home and indoors? I jumped online and started researching different activities to find my unicorn. Low and behold, I found a couple different options that I found intriguing. First things first, I do replicate the outdoors within my home. I have a treadmill and a bike trainer to continue those activities inside when getting out isn’t an option for me… but I needed more, I needed to find something that gave me the same mental boost without a workout.

It took a bit of time but I found great satisfaction from several places. 1. I love to write. Since writing is a HUGE passion of mine, I was pleasantly surprised by my guy, as he got me a Chromebook laptop so I can continue writing to my hearts content. 2. I love anything and everything SPACE. I am researching about our world, and our universe… learning the different laws that we exist within. I find tremendous excitement over learning about not only our planet, but the planets and star systems that make up outer space. Each day I am enthralled to learn more, and as I learn more, the more passionate I am about our Universe. The more I learn and look into space, the more I am convinced of a Creator. I will get into that more later… so for now…

Do everything you can to find things you are passionate about… doing so will make you feel more content, more satisfied with this life we are given. We all have ups and downs, and the downs can get the best of us… but finding the things that wake you up inside will give you a more satisfied life. We cannot control the curve-balls life can throw, and the ups and downs will always be there, they are not a choice… but how you choose to react is a big deal. It can mean the difference between being a little down, to downright miserable. As they say… pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional.

Whichever animal you feed, it will grow. So if you are constantly feeding into negativity, we already know the outcome… that negativity will just grow and grow. Starve out the bad and it will not flourish… find your passions and pursue them with all of your strength… your happiness is worth it!

YOU ARE WORTH IT.

Ransom Notes

 ransomnotes

Traveling in these wicked twists and turns in my head.

How has this happened? I would love to find,

A most comfortable place to rest my mind.

Hide.

These winding turns, alluring, they may be.

I do not want to pick this ugly fight.

Though you hold me hostage, with strength, Might.

I FIGHT.

I have begged for your unearned trust.

You leave invisible Ransom Notes,

Promises. Just as invisible. Sinking boat.

Yet I float.

I cannot make happen, what will not be.

I cannot force an aching heart, to feel,

That which it will not, that which isn’t ideal.

I heal.

©thebipolarmuse2012

~~~~~~~~

 I am passionate about writing… having fallen in love with poetry when I was 11 after an assignment in school in which I had to memorize and recite poems. I loved how poems could be elusive, inspiring discussions about what the writer is trying to convey. Oftentimes, words can be stringed together to create a beautiful poem that seems to be about a specific person or object, even if the true subject matter isn’t about a particular person, or time in life, but rather about an inanimate object.

That is the beauty in writing.

 

NIMH Bipolar Disorder

“Bipolar Disorder, also known as Manic Depressive Illness, is a brain disorder that causes unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, and the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks. Symptoms of  Bipolar Disorder are severe. They are different from the normal ups and downs that everyone goes through from time to time. Bipolar Disorder symptoms can result in damaged relationships, poor job or school performance, and even suicide. But Bipolar Disorder can be treated, and people with this illness can lead full and productive lives.

Bipolar Disorder often develops in a person’s late teens or early adult years. At least half of all cases start before age 25. Some people have their first symptoms during childhood, while others may develop symptoms late in life.

Bipolar Disorder is not easy to spot when it starts. The symptoms may seem like separate problems, not recognized as parts of a larger problem. Some people suffer for years before they are properly diagnosed and treated. Like diabetes or heart disease, bipolar disorder is a long-term illness that must be carefully managed throughout a person’s life.” ~ Sited from NIMH

****

I would like to start off by saying I do not think the name “Bipolar Disorder” does justice to the illness… and almost seems to belittle the disorder, and make it seem less significant in relation to other mental health disorders. Manic Depressive Illness is a much better description of the disorder, thereby being a more appropriate term/name as a whole. Manic alone is a single word offering a very precise description, as is the word Depressive. Therefor, Manic Depressive is less confusing, more blunt and to the point, with a certain er of importance and respect. Some people think “bipolar” simply means you have two sides to your personality, two “you’s” so-to-speak… and this thought process is incorrect on many fronts.

The chronological order of my documented personal illness began in the year 2000, where I spent five minutes with a Psychiatrist who then prescribed medication for Major Depression. In hindsight, this diagnosis was incorrect as I was already experiencing rapid cycling, and hypo-mania. Five minutes is NOT enough time to assess a patient with any type of Doctor. After many life changing events: divorce, not having custody of my children, and the final blow of an Ex’s suicide, my diagnosis was upgraded to Bipolar 2 Disorder (in 2003), along with the normal “piggybackers” anxiety, and insomnia. However, all of this fell on deaf ears as I refused to believe anything was wrong… and of course, I did not continue with therapy of any kind. Pharmaceutical or otherwise.

I finally had some reprieve for a couple years, and felt somewhat well, and what little medication I would take from time to time, I discontinued completely. Then in 2007 I became manic, depressed, anxious, psychosomatic, suffered brutal panic attacks, and became paranoid I would die in my sleep. Can you imagine how my world flipped upside down?? Sleep was suddenly terrifying… it became a monster out to get me, and no matter what I tried to do, no matter how exhausted I became, sleep totally eluded me. Each time I would lie down to sleep, as my body would drift off, when I would suddenly have a jerking motion, I would wake up completely, thinking I had just jerked awake preventing myself from slipping into death. This paranoia became my downfall. This paranoia caused me to make very poor choices, ending my 2nd marriage, and because of circumstances out of my control, I once again did not have custody of my children. Alas, prompting the next diagnosis of Bipolar 1 with Psychosis.

This nearly destroyed me, I felt like I was going to break at any moment… a break in which I could not come back from. It took accepting I was Manic Depressive, accepting therapy, accepting medication, accepting that even-though I wanted my children with me more than anything in the world, I had to accept that they were healthy, and happy with their Fathers, and I had to accept that I needed to work on myself so I could be the Mom they needed of me.

Education is so important. I am not speaking of the kind from a college, but rather of life and learning about your true self, and educating yourself about the challenges we all have. Learn about mental health issues, and then share that knowledge! This is insanely important to do. Not only are we helping ourselves, but we are helping others in doing this as well.

Lets start discussing mental health… open a dialogue with all those you know. This will help with the stigma associated with it. Personally, I have learned to be a chameleon… I can throw that happy face on faster than anything else I can do… I believe most of us are very good at that. Why?? So nobody can see the storm raging within.

If you love someone with mental health problems… keep looking for that storm. After-all, nobody wants to suffer… and I think we all would welcome the anchor that you have the potential to become… I know I certainly would.

©thebipolarmuse2018

 

How Is It Fair??

birdsDarkness

How is it fair?

I never knew I would love…

Dream, or Breathe,

The way I do You.

Can I sleep in peace?

I never knew I would hope,

Cry, or pray for dreamless nights,

The way I do because of you.

How is it Fair…

To be buried above ground,

where sadness surrounds,

And to be uncomfortable in your own skin?

How is it fair…

You’re buried six feet down.

Sleeping so peaceful, so sound…

And I can’t be found in the world

You are in?

How is it fair??

©thebipolarmuse2003

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

** Written many many years ago after the death of my ex-boyfriend, Fiance at one point in time… by his own hand.

Suicide is NEVER the answer. If you or someone you know are contemplating suicide, please reach out for help. Suicide hotlines offer a caring ear, and also have many resources to direct one in the right direction for help. You are not alone in your feelings… remember, this too shall pass and suicide is a permanent, destructive choice that cannot be taken back. Seek help. Choose life. ♥

Call 1-800-273-8255 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

I Fear Not The Night~

MoonOnWater

I fear not the night anymore, but the silence that accompanies the sun.

I would enjoy waking to the moon instead… the stars my guide…

My erratic mood lulled by the moons tide.

The stars and night like a very close friend.

Instead, I follow the masses, wake by the sun,

With only a few hours to rest my weary head.

Depression has begun.

Too much time to dwell, anxiety to swell,

To beg for peace; to forget the times,

I have truly failed.

I want to run, be free… follow my heart…

Flee…

To my loves.

I fear not the night anymore, but the silence…

that accompanies the sun.~

©thebipolarmuse2011

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Going through not having custody of my children has always been very difficult for me. I battle severe depressions over all lifes precious moments I cannot get back.

Poetry helps me to tame the monster, it is a form of therapy for me… helps me create bipolar Order.