Oops. Oh. Yeah. I need to take medication.

This is what I normally look like. Happy and enjoying my daughter and the day. So I was wildly upset with myself this morning. Sitting with my daughter in her play pen I tried not to cry. I could barely move. I couldn’t get up to change what was on the tv even though it was upsetting me. Everything felt completely out of control.

The truth is, I’m not perfect. I had “forgotten” — more like put off — getting my morning meds. Today was the third day I missed them. I’ve been busy working and being a mom…. I figured I could skip a few days.

But I can’t. Without the morning meds for just three days I could barely make my daughter her bottle and her screams hurt. They physically hurt me. They were too much. It was scary, feeling this way.

My husband picked up my meds and I promised myself and my daughter that I wouldn’t do this again. My health would come before everything — the holidays, work — because I can’t do anything without the medication.

Lesson learned.

If you’re bipolar and want to be part of my January class/group on how to thrive with bipolar disorder, please email me the biggest thing you struggle with raeroselarkbloom@gmail.com or leave it in the comments! We can support each other. ❤️

Cah! Ah! Choo!

Six month Elro finds one thing absolutely hilarious: a sneeze. If the dog sneezes she laughs uproariously. She isn’t interested in books, so I made her a little rhyming book in which an elephant invites a lot of animals over for dinner. They all arrive on time and under the weather. When I read it to her she giggled. Success! Her first audible enjoyment from a book. If you have a little one and you share an inside joke, make a little book for them about it. I had too much going on to illustrate it for her, so I cut the  shapes of the animals out of colorful paper stock. I’m going to bring it to Thanksgiving to remind her that there is onnnnne book she does like. And then maybe she’ll fall in love with all the books! Orrrrrr totally rebel. 😳

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The Faun & The Bobcat

Someone posted a picture of them huddled together in an office building during a wild fire. My first thought was – “That’s what I need my brain to do! More of that!”
I need the sweet, creative parts and the mean, destructive parts to get along. To huddle.
To realize that there are other things outside of my head that need attention.

Work, family, friends – I can’t be fighting with myself. I have to let all of the pieces that make me up, no matter their personalities, calm down. Chill. Huddle. Because what’s going on right outside? My 6 month old daughter is humming to herself as she chews on a fabric star, my own mother going in to another doctor office to try to find out what’s wrong, my husband is sick in bed. There are so many things to do, to say. I can’t be caught up in the drama of my own brain. Everything needs to chill out a little, take notice of what my reality calls for and huddle together in an unlikely alliance.

 

 

Making Things Is Important

Childproofing my house scares me. I go to bed thinking of bobbins rolling under a couch or a pin falling from some almost-finished doll. I told my husband I thought I would stop making things for awhile — until she was old enough not to swallow a bobbin. He said absolutely not and reminded me that lots of mothers who sew have figured out how to store their tools. Of course he was right. Of course it was my anxiety disorder that made everything look so black and white and unreliably creepy:  bobbins = death.

After using this tutorial to make a bonnet out of Flora’s (my brother’s grandmother) robe — which I’ll also be making a tie out of for my brother — I felt happier than I have felt in weeks. Creating things is important. Wherever you find that happy, peaceful, almost meditative feeling? Whether it be working in the garden, cooking, sewing, crafting, writing — anything where you make something out of something else? Do it. Stop putting it off. Fill your life with those moments!

It’s important for your physical and mental health. (Which, by the way, is the same thing.)

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The Conditions Are Always Impossible

My friend Laura Gail Grohe posted this quote by Doris Lessing on my Facebook wall and I latched on to both the words and the image with an enthusiasm that even Elmo from Sesame Street would say wooooaaaah, calm down, you’re giving me a headache.

The conditions are ALWAYS impossible! #aptAF

The laundry always needs to be done, there is always something wrong with some electronic thing, something aches, I’m a pile of nerves, I can’t find something, I’m sick or the baby is sick or the dog is sick or my husband is sick and oh now it’s time to make dinner.

The conditions are always impossible. The news is Horrible. A guy that survived the Las Vegas shooting got shot in the Borderline Bar & Grill shooting, and now there are survivors of the Las Vegas Shooting annnnnd the Borderline Bar & Grill shooting. How are THOSE survivors going to live their lives? How do you survive two shootings and then walk around this earth?

The conditions are always impossible. You’re not loved enough or you’re loved by the wrong person or the person you love is impossible or you’re impossible and great now the baby is crying.

The conditions are ALWAYS impossible.

That’s why you do it now, friends.

You write the book.

You write the poem.

You start the company.

You kiss your sweetheart.

You do the thing that is meant to get done. The thing you want to do. The thing that counts.

It reminds me of an Ani DiFranco line I loved in high school (so here are pics from high school):

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“You are what you do

in order to prevent becoming what you’re busy not doing

and if you do do it truly

you arrive at it duly and in the end you are resolved,

and the problem of Heaven is solved.”

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Or as Gilda Radner would say, “It’s always something.”

Right. It’s always something and it’s always impossible.

So?

Do. It. Now.

 

 

 

 

A Question I’m Asked

::I posted this on social media but I think it belongs here as well.::

When I am asked about the repercussions of having a baby from this particular body — if I am aware that I might be dooming my child to a life like mine, this is how I respond: First, this is the best time in history to have bipolar disorder. There are so many treatments available. Secondly, I find the phrase “your bipolar disorder” problematic. Yes, there is an aspect of bipolar that seems to be genetic, but it’s not an absolute. Telling disabled people they can’t have kids because their kids might be like them (as if that’s a bad thing) is a bit mean, ableist and eugenics-y. So, what would I do? Love her and tell her she will do amazing things on this earth and that there is beauty in her difference.

 

Notes From A Real Disabled Housewife To The Real Housewives of New York

Today I took my daughter out into the garden. She loves smelling the mint. We saw a black tailed swallowtail lay an egg on our lemon tree. I immediately retrieved it and put it in a mason jar with one of my daughter’s dresses as a lid.

You guys are prolly on a yacht.

But the fact that I am a cat lady (okay, caterpillar lady) is not our only difference. The main difference between you and I? YOU get to act absolutely insane because you’re not. There are so many kind hearted and wonderful people in my life who love me – but DAYUM do they hold me accountable. I take my pills at 8 every night, I get exercise every day, I see all of my therapists and doctors, I never skip meals. Dude, because I have PMDD, everyone — everyone — knows when my period is.

I watch you. You can do what I can not – totally freak out – without consequences. (Okay sometimes there are some consequences. But in comparison? One time I didn’t get enough sleep so I drank some coffee — just coffee! — and was accused of being manic.)

The actually insane, the truly disabled, cannot act “crazy.” We have to fall in line. I live vicariously through you.

Real Housewives dump vodka down their throats, sleep with oh-my-goodness-everyone, (especially Harry) and get in yelling matches at fancy restaurants. I mean, Ramona threw a GLASS at someone and busted her lip. If I did that I would be taken to the nearest psych ward as fast as possible. They would discuss my medication intake, all my thoughts and how often I was peeing.

So, go my beautiful creatures. Scream and drink and cry and fight. I will be watching, smiling, checking on the caterpillars, raising a glass of water to salute you.

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Our First Halloween

Elro was a moth and I was a host plant, which feels right on the money because my body is still not recovered from the pregnancy. I’m explaining this not to complain, but because I didn’t know you could have problems 6 months after you give birth — so if you’re in the same boat? You are not alone. She trick or treated with the big kids — which means my husband or brother carried her to the door and I’d say trick or treat for her. I can’t believe next year it will be so different!!!!