Another day, another struggle

Dealing with “some form of depression, but it’s not severe enough for Bipolar” every day can be quite a struggle. I have used Google and also a “Dummy” book on Bipolar and that’s how I found out that my symptoms really match something called “Cyclothymia”. I have written about it before on this blog, if you use the search function on the top, you’ll be able to find them all. The most “important” one perhaps, could be Cyclothymia.

But ever since we went into another lockdown, I have been struggling with several things again, one of them a depression, the other one my physical health and then there’s the money struggles as well. I sometimes really miss having enough money to get by, as that was one thing my ex and I did have: enough to live comfortably. I guess that’s the big plus of having two incomes… And that comfort and security is something I really miss.

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Mental health – More than struggles

I often write about the struggles I encounter because of my mental health “issues”. I often try to explain how I experience things differently due to the ADHD, Autism and depresions. I often seem a bit negative about it all, because it does feel like complaining from time to time. And while living with mental health issues surely brings along some difficult hoops to jump through, it also can bring along some “advantages”. And I think I should talk about them a bit. Even though they may seem minor. Even though I might take them for granted, because positive things are often just taken like that. The issues, the struggles, the differences, those are the things that people most often write about. Me as well.

I am trying to bring some things to light of dealing with all the things I mentioned above: autism, adhd and depression. Also, I often try to share my experiences with chronic pains. Because those are the things I am dealing with on a daily basis, those are the things that I know about. And in my opinion, if I write open and honestly about these experiences, than it can bring some awareness to others dealing with this, you are not alone! Or, maybe you know someone that is also dealing with these and you’d like to know more about it to support them. I try to write as good as I can about my experiences so that you may “learn” anything from it.

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Autism

In my early 30’s I experienced huge headaches which weren’t migraines. Because my GP didn’t trust the reason, he scheduled me for several head scans in the hospital. During one of these tests, they registered my brain activity. As I had barely slept due to the headaches, I felt so very tired while laying on that examination table. I even started to drift asleep when the lady who did the examination said: “Did you just fall asleep?” To which I had to answer: “Yes I just dozed off a bit, sorry. Why do you ask?” Her answer? “Because your brain activity just went to 150% of average.”.

It was that test that lead me to be tested for ADHD. But, while going through talks and tests for that, the shrink also discovered that I have Asperger’s Syndrome. These days it’s “just” being on the spectrum. But for me, the name Asperger’s helped me dive into it a wee bit more and I started reading up on the subject and so many thing became clear. I have been using Google and I found some (I think) useful images to help you see if you, or someone you care about, might be on the spectrum. A few images I have shared here before, some are “new” here. I claim no rights to the images, all were found through Google’s search engine.

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Autism – Dealing with stimulus

As most of you already know, I am on the spectrum. Before it was called the spectrum, there were different names for different types of autism. I am, what they call, “high functioning” and/or “Asperger’s Syndrome”. I am trying to deal with it best I can but sometimes I feel I am coming up a wee bit short. Like I am missing something or I just feel like I have done something wrong but I don’t know how I could do it right.

I struggle a lot with stimulus from the outside world. I almost always need sunglasses when I go outside due to the brightness of the sun/clouds. And when I was able to go to the gym, I always used noise canceling headphones so I would not be too distracted from what others were doing.

At the gym, wearing my Bose noise canceling headset
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Autism – Trying to help out

Those of you that have followed my writings here for some time know about me, my autism and my need to plan and have a routine. Nw that my mum is in a rehab facilitation after struggles with her new knee replacement, I of course have offered to help her and my dad out when I can. They always help me so it’s the least I can do for them. I always try to plan ahead, to set appointments with them in advance. And often it works out. But sometimes, there’s some last minute changes and then I need to adapt. And, so far, I have been able but it can be hard at times.

I ask my parents in the groups app several times a week if they need anything from the stores. So I can take it along when I go to them. And often, my dad says no, he’s got all he needs. So I go to the store… And then, some hours after I have returned, I get an app “when you’re going, could you look for…” 😂

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Bad health, bad friend

Due to my struggles with my bad health, both mental as physical, I haven’t been in the best of moods. I struggle to keep going and I feel like I am the worst friend ever. As I haven’t been on Facebook a lot, I felt it dragged me down and I didn’t feel like being “social”. I know I missed friends’ birthdays and I feel so horrible about it.

If I have missed yours, I am sorry. I truly am. But my state of mind just sucks at the moment and I find it hard to get through the days. I used to have a birthday calender but I didn’t get it in the divorce, so it’s also hard for me to remember birthdays when I don’t have Facebook to help me remember… 😭 I am sorry!

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Mental health – Needing daily meds

Because of my hip and fibro, I need daily painkillers. But, because of my mental health issues, I also need daily pills. Ever since I have tried to kill myself with an OD of sleeping pills, I have been on medication. At first, I was very sceptic, as I had tried meds before and so far, they had all let me down or made me worse than I was without them.

First, I got Risperidone. Then, when I kept feeling suicidal, they added Mirtazapine. I have shared a bit about these meds a few days ago, and since then I have Googled them so I could give you a bit more information. And maybe help end the stigma that needing meds for your mental well being is not done. It has taken me a while before I could write about it here. And I guess it was partly due to shame, indeed, I was ashamed of needing meds for my autism and depressions.

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Mental health – Gathering knowledge

I’ve always been interested in phychology. The working of the human brain is a marvelous thing. And once I knew I had several phychological illnesses, I became more interested in learning about those. First I used Google, making prints of all sites that were interesting to me. Then I started buying books. Some I delved right in, anxious to learn. But of those, some were written in such a confrontational way, to me, that I found it very hard to keep reading.

After the divorce I dived back into my books. In the beginning I thought those books would help me regain my life as I once knew it. I really believed my ex would miss me so much that she would want to try again. I know I missed her like hell and because of it all, I kinda went through hell. Trying to OD. Being hospitalized for a few days. Struggling to let go of my old life.

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Mental health – Self doubt

I’ve been a victim of severe bullying from age 4-16. I’ve often heard I did things wrong, I wasn’t this enough or I didn’t do that well enough. It make me often doubt myself and my abilities to do things. Even to points where I’d just not do it because I thought I would mess it up if I did.

My ex boyfriend often blamed me for things going wrong with him. If he lost something, I had misplaced it. If he forgot an appointment, I should have remembered him more of it. There was always a reason to find within my doing. So when I met my girlfriend, I thought things would change.

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Autism – Just another day

Being on the spectrum, I have found out early (before I even knew of that spectrum) that I thrive on a set, daily routine. I hate not knowing what is about to happen and when sudden things happen, they can quite overwhelm me. When something small happens, I have learned how to cope, though to be honest, it still goes wrong at times. But with major changes or setbacks, I feel like I struggle more than the average person to deal with it. To accept it for what it is and to keep going.

I have written before about needing routines, and now adjusting them due to the lockdown our country is in. If you have missed those posts and you are interested in reading them, I’ll quick-link them here for your convenience: Autism – Boring routines, Covid19 – Losing my routine, again and Autism – Lockdown routine. But what happens with me when I have to deal with a change in plans? How do I try to deal with sudden changes? I’ve tried to put my thoughts and feelings to words, hoping to give you a glimpse into my wicked mind.

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