attending shenanigans

attending shenanigans

shenanigans

Dear Internet,

It’s spring and along with it being the prime for allergies, it’s also cold drink season. Years ago I was introduced to the Toddy Cold Brew system via Kate and have been hooked on it ever since. Since I’ve been (more or less) caffeine free since January 1, and my recent exposure to caffeine did not end the world, I decided to mix 60% decaf and 40% caf coffees together for my first cold brew batch of 2014. The reason for the mix was that I did not quite have enough decaf for the brew and had extra caffeinated hanging around, so why not?

Big mistake.

The standard serving measurement is 1/4 cup of the concentrate per 8oz of milk or water. On Saturday, after brewing the coffee for about 24 hours, I mixed 1/4 cup concentrate, ice, and about 12oz of vanilla almond milk for consumption.

I was high all of Saturday and far into Sunday. I was so manic I opined the following on Facebook:

J. seriously considered throttling me in stores.
Case in point: Looking for shorts to wear to play tennis tomorrow, thought it bright idea to try them on outside regular clothes mid-aisle.
Subtitle: Keeping it classy since 1972.

I was so manic that even though I took one Klonopin that night to knock me out, that wasn’t quite enough to knock me back into the netherworld I so desperately needed, which lead into more mania into Sunday.

On Monday, because I hate throwing away waste and rather enjoy the brain mixing, I tempered down to 1/8th cup of concentrate, ice, milk and the mania was still on fire. Not as bad as over the weekend, but still pretty awful. A Klonopin was produced.

Tuesday, I took it down to a tablespoon of concentrate, then mixed in the ice/milk and we seem to have a winner. I can still get coffee taste without wasting what I had already produced AND most importantly, without enflaming the mania.  I’ve been doing this combination, mixed with 1/8th cup of water to help the dilution, all week and so far its been working.

It will take me a very long time to go through this batch.

As the cycle of the mania continues its elliptical path, when I was feeling so calm a few weeks prior, I wasn’t too surprised I started crashing Thursday morning. I’ve noticed my agitation on certain things escalates when I’m peaking during the mania, right before the downward dog starts occurring.

One thing I’m super impressed with myself on is my new superhero power of pulling in the crazy before all hell breaks loose. I found myself in a variety of stressful situations this week where I could have done some real damage. I swallowed hard the impulse, which seemed to sap a lot of my strength, but I’m just puffed I was able to keep it together. To be sure, there some difficult situations I had to address, even if I tried to escape from them, so I settled on brusque politeness to get the job done. That seemed to have done the trick.

Sometime this week, I found out it was National Mental Health Month, which lead me to my twice yearly search for a national foundation for people with bipolar in the United States. The United Kingdom has one, why don’t we?

After much digging around the Internet, I finally found a nationwide organization that supports both depression and bipolar, what has a local chapter here in Grand Rapids. I got in touch with the leader and they do indeed meet 2x a month, so I’m going to be checking this out.

I am suspicious of such things, as I am always suspicious of these matters. The last group meetings I did was about a decade ago for Borderline Personality Disorder which freaked me out more than helped. People obviously much sicker than me, barely able to cope with their daily lives, that I felt like an imposter within their midst. I wasn’t REALLY sick, because I was functioning far more in day to day lives then they were. The doctor amped them up on drugs for control, she pulled me off of mine and kept telling me how lucky I was to be so well adjusted despite my maladies.

Right now I feel like I’m grasping at straws. Drugs don’t work, thus I need  better coping mechanisms. After awhile, you get tired of crying in your car as you head home because you’re too manic to cook bacon, because  you know if you do you may accidentally set something on fire. You’ve done it before and you know you will do it again. Your whole life is a chain reaction against a single action, inflamed by this disease.

I wonder if any therapist ever gets that we want more than to “function”? We want the normalcy that we envy in others. We want to do more than just be able to hold down a job or attend school or keep a house. We want to live.

xoxo,
Lisa

This day in Lisa-Universe: 2013