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Monday, November 19, 2012

Just a boring Monday night????

I was sitting around a a few hours ago and I thought to myself, "ugh it's Monday night and I have absolutely nothing to do."

I sat there bummed out for a few minutes until a now rather obvious thought hit me like a truck; I have a ton of shit I could do, why am I not doing any of it?

I have clean laundry that needs to be folded, dirty laundry that needs to be washed, the bathroom could use a good scrub, the kitchen could use a good scrub, the floors need to be vacuumed, a good dusting wouldn't hurt, my kitchen cabinets are screaming for a reorganization, my front storage room/office is a disaster, my bedroom closet needs a good purging and reorganization.

Ok, so I don't have anything fun to do on a Monday night.

Wrong again. I could knit, read one of the 12 books that I have started in the last year and not finished, paint, listen to music and dance around my apartment, do some pilates, head out for a walk since it stopped raining, text my daughter, call my mother, write my grandmas each a letter, learn some speed reading exercises, organize my photos, search online for fantastically awesome and thoughtful Christmas presents to buy my family, or research volunteer opportunities and toy drives in my city.

At any given point there are probably well over 100 things I could be doing. I am not well enough at this exact moment to be working so I have a ridiculous amount of time to choose to anything at all that I want. Despite this fact, at any given moment I am usually sleeping, watching tv, eating, sitting around, or perusing Twitter and Facebook mindlessly clicking on links and whatnot.

My brain just smacked me upside the head with what a waste that really is. Sleep is good, but not 12 hours a day. TV and movies are great, just not 8 or 9 hours a day. Twitter and Facebook are fun, but not 104 times a day.

So then I says to my brain I says, "brain, why on earth is I bein so stupid?"

No, but honestly, why?

It took a couple of hours and some pondering, eating, and distraction, but I think I have it figured out. It is not that I never have anything to do, it is that I never have any want to do anything. And not just the tedious obligatory cleaning related stuff, but a want for the fun and productive stuff is missing too. I pretend I do. I tell myself the little white lie that I really wish I had more to do, but I often don't. This is what an incredibly long and painful illness has done to me. I don't want to do anything and I don't care that I don't want to do anything. Or at least I haven't cared up until this point, as I have done nothing to change it. This is the apathy and surrender that the horrible depression associated with my Bipolar 2 has caused.

This realization got me quite motivated. For about 6 1/2 minutes. Then I just got sad. Then numb. Then sad again. Then discouraged. More sadness. And now I am writing about it all.

So how do I get my want back? I assume, as with most things, baby steps. Start small. Day 1 do one cleaning thing, one fun thing, and watch just a little less tv. Day 2 increase that, and so on. My problem is not only resolve, but follow through and commitment. Sometimes I will get all motivated and attempt activity and productivity for a few days, and then I will get either bored, distracted, depressed, or scared and I will stop. I have a SEVERE inability to set goals and actually see them through. This pisses me off. Before my Bipolar 2 symptoms began I was one of the hardest working, most dedicated and driven kids you would ever meet. I have not been that person in a very long time. That makes me angry, and sad. Feels like something else stolen from me by this illness. Another area where control has been lost, and it is such an exhausting fight to get it back.

My only hope right now is the old saying, "the first step to recovery is admitting that you have a problem". It is true that there are certain periods of time in my life where it is not that I don't want to do things, it is that because of my symptoms I literally can't. But this is a smaller percentage of days than 95% so I need to get off my ass and do something.

Hi. My name is Cristina and I am a TV and Internet addict. I hide in these activities because the real world scares me. I am afraid of failure, and even more afraid of success. I don't think I'm likeable or interesting so I shut myself off in order to avoid humiliation and hurt. I hide away inside my illness and myself because so many years of fighting have beaten me down and worn me out. It is easier to hide and to not try, than to go through anymore rejection, failure, blame, and judgment.

Hi. My name is Cristina and I am sick of hiding and taking the easy road. Whether motivated by lack of focus, motivation, energy, and direction, or by fear; I am tired of it. I have resolve at this moment. I will take baby steps. I will try to keep fighting. And although I have said this before and not followed through that does not mean that I cannot follow through this time. I CAN succeed, and if I slip up I will forgive myself and start over. Because the only failure is in not trying. The only way I truly fail is if I give up. It will take however long it takes, but if I am still trying and fighting then that is success.

I need to remember that most success is not big, huge and quick. It is a series of small successes. A learning curve. A string of slip ups that you pick yourself up and then learn from. I need to practice patience. And I need to be kind to and forgiving of myself.

It's really all I can do.

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