Friday, 30 December 2011

The Seven Of Diamonds


I've recently discovered that playing Snap with yourself just doesn't work. 

This year the majority of my friends have left London for good to play grown ups - move to the country, raise kids etc - and I'm finally starting to feel that blanket of isolation. When my mobile used to ring I'd ignore it - my handbag being at least a foot away - now I have it taped to my ear and wait for it to ring. I refuse to skype, I will not put my make up on just to have a conversation.

One of my new years resolutions will be to spend more time with other people, even if they irritate me, be in a philanthropic or misanthropic day.

Other new years resolutions include..

Lots of CBT, big fan of.
Laugh more, even if I have to hold a gun to my own head
Don't pretend to forget to take lithium
Drink less
Read more
Delete all online shopping accounts
Listen to more music, does not include playing the same song on repeat for hours on end
No more guinea pigs, people already need a ticket to come round the flat

There's already loads of what I call "CBT typos" in that list which are gun, don't, delete, no.
Right, back to the card deck. Unfortunately the only pack available in the rather dodgy tobacconist in the Canary Islands where I purchased them was a pornographic deck. Every time I flip the seven of diamonds I get a bit excited.

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

CBT Expert Anna Albright Answers Questions On Depression.



I met the author of this article - Anna Albright - at the MoS Christmas party last week sipping a Martini as I was guzzling shandy. She's a CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) expert and lovely lady.

Here she answers popular questions on depression.


http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-1337622/Could-I-depressed-I-dont-cry.html

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Sertraline and Alcohol


As much as I like to keep this blog entertaining, it's also important that I keep it factual as I know other people who read this have or care for other people that are affected by mental health. So here is the most important thing I have learnt this month.

Sertraline and alcohol do NOT mix well together.

After three isolated incidents this month where I have..

a) Thrown up on somebody else (repetitively)
b) Spoken to a film crew who do not exist
c) Chose the worst thing you can possibly say to somebody and then say it

.. I did a bit of digging. Firstly, alcohol consumed on top of any SSRI (Citalipran, Venofaxin, Fluoxitine, Seroxat etc) will get you drunk much quicker. This sounds like a good thing because you will spend less, but you will also be picking sick out of your hair and crying to Chas n Dave whilst people are still arriving. Secondly, SSRI's can increase the want to drink alcohol. I also think that because SSRI's make you dehydrated, you drink more and quicker. 

I spoke to a couple of people, one on Citalipran the other on Fluoxitine who both concluded that when they drink on these they "went mad" and did things they wouldn't usually do or behave in a way that isn't them.

Luckily for me I still think it's cool to drink Shandies between mouth fulls of pork scratchings so hopefully from now on I can save my Chas n Dave moment for much later on. 

Manic Episodes Are Cleaner Than Cocaine


Now the festive chaos is running dry, with all it's family  feuds, board game strops and remote control murders,  New Years Eve approaches. 

Not that the majority of people who live in London know where to go for NYE, it suddenly dawns on you at 5.30pm when you're ironing your glad rags that you've no idea what you're doing, so you ring round your mates to see what their plans are but they're all engaged doing the same thing.

NYE is, I find, rather over-rated, it's the same as any other night except you have to pay to get in, queue at the bar for longer, you can't sit down, and everyone holds hands and sings a song together. You can do that in church for free.

And many people spend most of the day (and night) darting across London on a mission to get some cocaine to find that it's not in fact cocaine. 

Fact: The average amount of cocaine in cocaine in London is less than 10%

Unfortunately many people believe they can't have a good night without (what they think is) cocaine, I once used to think the same, but the way I see it now is.. I already talk at people about complete rubbish at full speed and have episodes where I think I'm bloody amazing, I don't NEED cocaine to do that for me.

It makes me wonder if I should be bottling up my manic episodes and selling them for NYE but less than 10% of course.

Another fact: People with bipolar are much more likely to take cocaine or other substances as a form of self medicating or mood matching.

Pic: Snowball I made from clay and cotton. In fact I made them in bulk if anyone's interested.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

My Letter To Take A Break Magazine


Dear Top Tips editor

Every Christmas I am disappointed beyond belief with the crap (you can print "unsatisfactory") present in my Christmas Cracker. I wait all year for a miniature comb or shoe horn that I can't even use.

So this year I have crafted my own Christmas Crackers, consisting of my own rubbish jokes and oversized hats, but "useful" gifts, such as razors, condoms, cocodamol, oxo cubes, laxatives, cotton buds, lip balm, lemsips, wind tablets, plant food, a roll up, chewing gum, and, I get to slip in my business card for networking opportunities.

Yours hopefully

Kerry of Hackney

(PS If you make this fabulous tip Tip Of The Month I will let you advertise on my blog for free.)

Friday, 16 December 2011

Anita Dobson V Miss World




I'm chuffed to bits with the huge (positive) response I had from my last article (The Mail On Sunday one) and what I've really enjoyed are the emails from complete strangers who themselves or partners suffer from bipolar, thanking me for the honesty, insights and humour (although I am often not aware of this, in blog life or real life).

I carry a copy in my handbag, because being episodal manic I have tendencies to make things up. Not for showing off like doing the splits or knowing all the words to Any One Can Fall In Love (which I nearly do), but because it's sometimes easy to get carried away with grandiose thoughts and believe I've done something when I haven't (or to the extent). Therefore when I get that knowing look and I can whip it out and show them.

My next unrealistic goal I aim to achieve.. Miss World.

Pic.. Emma Pyne and me when we took a comedy show to Edinburgh Festival 2006.

Monday, 12 December 2011

The Daily Stresses Of Living With Bipolar Disorder - Mail On Sunday 11/12/11




http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2072547/Daily-stresses-bipolar-disorder-Paranoia-spending-sprees-lots-guinea-pigs.html

Fair play to the editor for using my guinea pigs in the title, when I proudly showed it to them they ate it.

Meeting Brian Cox


Yesterday I had the pleasure of meeting Professor Brian Cox. This was because I am going to be researching high energy particle physics for his next book.

As often happens, I'm getting confused with someone else,  this was actually a book signing. Unfortunately I had to spend £20 on a book I won't understand and queue for an hour in the rain to have my fifteen seconds with Brian, during which time I couldn't really strike a conversation with him because I wouldn't be able to talk him about physics' patterns just as he wouldn't (I'm assuming) be able to talk to me about knitting patterns.

I saw my psychiatrist in the queue but couldn't get his attention, but managed to get a photo of him talking to Brian, and later told my partner I'll print it out and give it to him (psych) in a Christmas card next week, to which he replied "Don't be so ridiculous, he'll discharge you". Following a failed attempt to bake a cake for him a few weeks back he's probably right.

http://www.waterstones.com/waterstonesweb/products/brian+cox/jeff+forshaw/the+quantum+universe/8575171/

Monday, 28 November 2011

Sertreline and Jellybabies


I haven't been blogging much since the summer, three reasons..

1- Blog block (try repeating that after necking a glass of cava) where it's not that I haven't got anything to say, I have too much to say and I can't decide what to say first, a bit like "option overload" artist Alex Ingram calls it (he's the guy I tried to interview about his new book but instead just had a heated debate about whether mini cheddars are biscuits or crisps).

2 - I'm trapped underneath a 1940's brick a brac stall - during a mild manic phase in the summer (at which time I had stopped taking all meds) I got given a sewing machine and made twelve sausage dogs/draft excluders, ten toilet roll dolls (five of which hand knitted), six lavender eye masks, twenty four lavender bags, eight pin cushions, one hundred and twenty bunting flags, five hand knitted cakes, six patchwork cushion covers, and thirty two hand made cards. Four months later I'm still clearing up!

3 - Lastly, in the last few weeks I've fallen into a deep depression and it is so hard to write when I'm low - even though I squeezed out an article for Mental Healthy (formerly Uncovered) magazine - and currently taking time off getting to grips with Sertreline as a last resort (I hate taking SSRI's they feel so unclean, especially on top of lithium because they pull you in different directions). So it's PJ's, cups of tea and Jelly Babies, True Movie channel(s), Take a Break magazine(s) and staring at the guinea pigs.

xx

Sunday, 27 November 2011

RIP Gary Speed

It just doesn't make sense that within 24 hours of this recording Gary Speed committed suicide.

Monday, 7 November 2011

Bunting therapy


I used to hate bunting. Bunting used to make me feel nauseus. If I was in a car and we drove under it my skin would crawl.

Bunting reminds me of rainy Sundays where as kids we were forced to have fun at cheap hired hall parties with dry sponge cakes, dirty jelly, crust removed plain sandwiches, games that kids cried through because like me they didn't want to be there, red faced drunk weekend dads and of course bunting.

Something clicked recently and I made some bunting. Then I made some more. And some more. I have just cut my one hundredth piece of fabric bunting. I have (South American accent) excorcised the demons!

The next step is to the okey kokey.

The pic is taken from The Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace this year. It's the equivalent of a Dungeons and Dragons convention for nerdy knitters like me. 

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Bipolar and Relationships



Here's my latest publication on the online magazine Mental Healthy, formerly the glossy Uncovered magazine who featured this blog. It's had some good feedback and just one angry response.  I'm happy with that. Happy reading..

Bipolar and Relationships

By Kerry Hudson
Waking up on a Saturday morning, the sun beating it's way through closed curtains. the smell of freshly cut grass from the park outside, and the man I love draping his arms around me. For most couples today means a picnic in the park, a day at the seaside or relaxing in the garden, but I just crawl back under the duvet, the familiar dread consuming me once again.
I was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder in 2005, and psychosis 2010, but the symptoms have been there since I was just thirteen and all my relationships, no matter how loving, have suffered at the hands of my condition.

My choice of partner

Pretty much all of my relationships have been with guys I already knew as friends. This  cuts out the awkward guesswork and potential stigma as they tend to already know a bit about me being bipolar. I usually go for less conventional guys. I've tried dating conventional men but I feel even more like I'm under the spotlight in comparison.
Unlike most of my "normal" friends I've never tried internet dating and at times felt like I've been missing out on all the fun, but I dreaded the whole "shall I say something? when do I say something? what do I say?" situation.  Bipolar has a big impact on my life, my personality and my behaviour, but then I couldn't exactly write it into my profile;  I'm, 30, 5-5 brunette, hazel eyes, Aquarius, manic depressive, likes everything one minute, hates all of it the next could I?
I'm currently in a stable yet lively relationship with someone I've known for sixteen years. He is very accepting and understanding of my bipolar. He has a diagnosed personality disorder and is having long term treatment so our lifestyles are quite similar which helps me feel less alienated to the rest of the world.
He is however often the target of my frustrations, purely because I trust him more than anyone else - ironic as it is that the one's we love the most are the ones we push away - but he has learnt  not to take my negativity too personally. This took time, but only because I spent so long in denial about being bipolar (about the first three years of our relationship) that I wouldn't let him try and reason with me. I can only imagine how frustrating, confusing and draining it must be for the person on the receiving end of my mood swings. 

Previous relationships

During my previous relationships I was yet to be diagnosed and had no understanding of my mood swings, mania, paranoia etc.. and so I simply believed I was a bad girlfriend. This did nothing for my confidence in the relationship, especially as I watched boyfriend after boyfriend in hospital waiting rooms or police stations their with their head in their hands, in tears or just plain exhausted. Some of them will never know that I'm not a bad person, just desperately unwell at times.
On meeting a new or potential partner for the first time, my behaviour on the first date was usually very different to further dates. Guys would usually find me very entertaining - talking a LOT, making them laugh, doing crazy things, knocking back drinks, making wild suggestions - they got the impression I had  no hang ups, was wild even, and I would usually put out on the first night, often somewhere on the way home as I couldn't wait till we got there.
So undoubtably guys would assume that this was how I was all the time but usually by the third date they'd have a much clearer idea my levels can drop from 60 to 0 at any time. By now I'd be either tearful and clingy, or lifeless and dull, and they'd seem disappointed, and that was that.

High sex drive

Having a girlfriend who's a sex addict must seem like heaven for a guy, but in reality my partner at the time I was at my 'peak' was drained. This was before my diagnosis so I was taking medication which can have the opposite effect, and mania had found it's way to my sex drive and I needed it all the time. He also felt as though he wasn't enough for me, and he wasn't. Video's, toys, drugs.. all that matched or fueled my drive were needed. Ironically he started sleeping with other women just to have regular sex again.

Mood swings

Mood swings are probably the most noticeable complications in my relationships, especially topped  with psychotic episodes, where I can be extremely over sensitive, paranoid and believe all sorts of things, from my partner being in bed with another woman because he's not text back within two minutes, to believing he's lying dead somewhere because he's not picking up. And mood swings can create shifts of intimacy, sometimes I'm distant, other times clingy, sometimes I'm full of love and ideas of marriage, other times plagued with hate and remorse for things that  in reality haven't even happened. 
When I'm manic, I'm easily lead astray, and can forget all about my loved one back home who's worried sick because, and it's happened many times,  I've popped to the shops to return home two days later oblivious to to the worry I've caused them.
My partner often has to tread on eggshells - not knowing if something which usually makes me laugh will upset me today, and what's more complicated is that I suffer mixed episodes so I can be in many moods at once, often finding myself in tears of euphoria, anxiety and despair at the same time. Difficult for him, and even more difficult for me.
Despite these ups and downs, highs and lows I have a loving, intimate relationship and have learned a good few things over the years that now are the keys to my present relationship's success. I'd now like to share them with you:

Relationship tips for the bipolar sufferer

The most important thing is to keep taking prescribed medication. Many bipolar sufferers I’ve met in hospital over the years are there because they’ve stopped taking their medication to feel “alive” again. As your health will suffer, your relationship will do too.
Be an honest as you feel comfortable with your partner, if they aren’t aware of your symptoms or behaviour when unwell they may take things you do or say personally.
Allow your partner to have a life outside your relationship, they will need the support, which in turn will make them stronger for you when you need them.
Remember that they are your partner, not your carer, the spark can burn out when illness gets in the way and sometimes needs relighting again so find sometime for romance.

Relationship tips for the bipolar sufferer's partner

Try not to judge negative behaviour, or take it personally. Instead question why your partner is behaving this way, are these symptoms or early warning signs of an episode?
Learn as much as you can, without prying, about your partners condition. There are plenty of bipolar websites on the internet, and you can speak to MDF for advice (LINK).
Get support for yourself. There may be times when you too need to talk to someone so be it a friend, a family member or a counsellor, make sure that you offload from time to time. This will also give you the strength to you to support your partner.
Although your partner has bipolar, they also have lots of lovely things about them which is why you fell in love with them. Remind yourself of these from time to time, especially when you feel consumed by the illness. Your partner is likely to feel embarrassed about their condition, so remind them of those lovely things too.
You can find out more about Kerry by visiting her fantastic blog with it's dry humour and raw, honest insights into bipolar.

Monday, 31 October 2011

Happy, Happy Halloween


Halloween is a relief for the depressives and personality disorders alike. We can be ourselves - minus the fake smiles, lies about what we've been up to and overall social etiquette - and stand alone, stare through people and should anyone try and talk to us "I'm going to kill you" Ahahahaha" "No seriously, I'm going to kill you" (pause) "Ahahahaha" It feels good to say it out loud.

It's funny (as in odd) that for one night of the year only, seeing someone with a slit throat, or a knife in their chest is funny (as in mildly hilarious). I wonder if there is the same atmosphere in A&E, doctors in hysterics as they try and stop the blood pouring out of an open wound in intensive care, news readers biting their lip as they announce it in a news flash.

Just a thought.

Happy Halloween.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Fantasies about erm.. double glazing


Is it wrong to  have a fantasy forty minute conversation about double glazing?

Does this make me really dull?

Maybe I should go and chuck a TV out of a hotel window or something.

Then I can REALLY have a forty minute conversation about double glazing.

Seesaw Seating Plan: The ones that keep me going..

Seesaw Seating Plan: The ones that keep me going..: Just wanting to share one of my favourite comments to date and to raise awareness to his own blog. david.hughes said.. Hi Kerry I just w...

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Article - Telling A New Partner You Have A Mental Illness



MY NEW PARTNER DOESN’T KNOW I HAVE A MENTAL ILLNESS, WHAT SHOULD I DO?
For many of us the very act of telling a new partner we suffer from a mental health condition holds us back from being in the loving relationship we deserve, so why is it then that we chose to be lonely over disclosing our illness? After all it is just that, an illness, not a dirty secret.
According to a Time For Change survey more people in England would turn down a date with someone who had a mental illness (57%) if they were single and looking for love online than someone they found unattractive (44%) or someone without the same interests (43%). Also, people with a mental health problem are more likely to be turned down for a second date if they reveal they have a mental illness (44%) than those who disclose they have been in prison (42%), have a physical health problem (19%) or are unemployed (18%).
SO WHY SHOULD I TELL THEM? 
Being in a good relationship may also help us with our recovery, our partner, if they love us, the will want to help us. In order to do that they will need to know. 
Besides, if they stick around they’re going to find out sooner or later, so why not make it on our terms, under our control, rather than the hard way i.e. during our next psychotic episode. Besides, keeping things from one another can create trust issues.
Once we tell them, they should understand  our behaviour rather than judge it. We may still not even recognise our symptoms or behaviour when we are becoming unwell, and why would we? they’re all we've known. But by telling our partner about our condition, when we noticeably become hostile, or clingy, or take our frustrations on them, they are already aware, sensitive, and less likely to take these behaviours personally or mistake them as rejection.
Neil is diagnosed borderline personality disorder, a condition known for problematic relationships due to them finding it difficult to connect with other people’s emotions or show true empathy, being hyper alert to assumed signs of rejection making them over clingy at times, and switching from positive to negative attitudes towards a loved one at irrational pace.
Sometimes the fact that my partner knows enough about my condition to take certain behaviour into consideration is helpful, as I'm not just dismissed as being a nutter.” 
SO WHEN IS A GOOD TIME TO TELL THEM?
Paul suffers from Schizophrenia, a condition that often affects relationships as symptoms include paranoid or delusional accusations which loved ones are often the target of, asocialty; an inability to emphasize or feel intimacy with someone and social withdrawal which can hold back relationships moving to the next level. 
“ I told my partner about 3 months into the relationship. I didn't want to jeopardize the relationship early on by introducing a negative. After 3 months I felt I could trust her enough not to be turned off by my problem”
Rachel has bipolar disorder which is often perceived through the eye of a new partner as wild, what with extrovert, flirtatious and often wreck less behaviours often deemed exciting, yet is followed by withdrawal, anxiety and often suicidal thinking, it’s no wonder these relationships are often than not short sharp flings.
“I would not say anything at first as I have an illness, the illness isn’t me. I wouldn’t want to be judged on having an illness.”
For members of No Longer Lonely an internet dating website, this issue is not a problem. The successful site was set up by Jim Leftwich for people with mental health problems which already helps to overcome the problem of disclosure. 
“I get regular testimonials from users attesting to how their lives have improved because of the site. Fact is that we've spawned at least 30 marriages through the site.  I think there is a profound comfort getting to know someone for romantic intention when the idea of disclosure is taken off the table.  We all speak a common language of experience.”
SO HOW MUCH DO I NEED TO TELL THEM? 
We should never say more than we feel comfortable, should they pry they are not being sensitive and we can tell them off.
What would be useful is if you let your partner be aware of any symptoms or triggers so that s/he can support you. 
These are the early stages of the relationship, so there is no need to discuss what my happen years down the line such as “I need to come off my meds when I’m pregnant and are at risk of post-natal psychosis” or “You may nee to take time off work to look after me” just as you wouldn’t discuss starting a family or getting a mortgage at this stage. 
Rachel says “ It depends on how close you are, but telling someone you spent a long time in a psychiatric ward may steer someone who is not as aware of the illness as you are, in the wrong direction. Then again, an established partner can be useful and help out in situations if they are aware and prepared”. 
“I wouldn’t want to tell a new boyfriend that during peaks of mania I’ve slept with shit loads of men, for example. That’s none of his business. But I might want to tell him that I can be touchy if depressed, so he doesn’t think it’s something he’s done wrong.” 
IS IT WISE TO GET INTO A RELATIONSHIP?
Yes, yes, yes! We have as much right to a loving relationship as anyone else, and more. Admittedly there will be struggles, possibly more than the average (if there is such) relationship because we will inevitably get unwell which is likely to put a strain on it, but how good would it feel to get through it and say at the other end We got through this rather than do it alone, again. That old cliche “What doesn’t kill us strengthens us” holds truth.
Paul say’s
“ Being in a relationship helped me manage my problems.. it's very reassuring to have someone who accepts you for the way you are. What i found was I felt a sense of responsibility towards my partner to stay fit and well so I was looking after myself better and that generally helped me stay on an even keel. I suppose i wasn't doing it for myself but for my partner because i loved her and wanted things to be great between us”
Rachel say’s 
“ When depressed I’ve been hostile and aggressive towards men, or neglected to contact people I had started dating. I am a difficult person to be around when I’m depressed (but marvelous when manic) so a new person may not, understandably, want to be involved with someone that could bring them down. On the flip side, being with me when I’m manic can be extremely tiring for another person; as I don’t sleep and I constantly chastise other people for not being up to speed, as it were. Being around me when I am this hyper and irritable must be draining”.

“However, being in a good relationship can absolutely help, with good sex and comfort and a shoulder to cry on, it also gives you someone to focus on rather than yourself, and someone to talk through things with”. 
And Neil say’s
I do find relationships difficult because rational thinking often goes out of the window, taking trust and empathy with it. I am also very affected by their behaviour, and often take things extremely personally, although I find myself unable to empathize with their problems which makes things worse. 

What's more annoying is that i know i can be very supportive and helpful, but this depends on my own moods and state of mind which can shift very quickly, and there is hardly any consistency with regards to mood or ability to rationalize”
“Although my relationship can be very black and white, when it’s white, (good) it’s really good. Having to go through things on my own when I can go through them with my partner, I much prefer the latter. I feel safer. Besides, we have fun, for someone that’s often depressed that’s just as important”
WHAT ADVICE CAN I GIVE THEM?
Help them to learn about the symptoms and what to look out for, we can do this together as it will be helpful for BOTH of us as we have become so accustomed to them.
Ask them not to take things personally be it withdrawal, frustrations, or all round negativity.
Ask them to be realistic about how much they can give, and take. 
Remember our personality comes first, our illness is secondary, just as someone with diabetes, or epilepsy, it’s not all we’re about.
The most important thing they can for for themselves is to get support themselves -  Friends, family, even support networks such as forums and counseling. The more happy and healthy they are, the more it rubs off on us and our attitude, and our relationship.

Monday, 12 September 2011

London Lies and Wax- work Bruce Forsyth


Irrational urges to go to Madam Tausauds in the middle of the night are keeping me awake. Why I feel the need to stare at a wax-work of Bruce Forsyth at 4am I don't know, but it's brought my attention to London's biggest lie.. The City That Never Sleeps. Many times pre lithium) I've got up in the middle of the night, got dressed, called a cab just to wander around town looking for somewhere still open, one time only finding Brian Tilsy from Corrie's club still open, dance till I dropped (alone, sober) before tucking myself back in again. 

Just as there is happy hour, they should be bipolar hour, somewhere between 4 and 8am, for us to spin around the dance floor which is cornered off.  Hmm.. maybe this could feature in my next letter to Boris Johnson. 

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

The Cheers Report



If you're like me, have a mild obsession with statistics, graphs, pie charts, etc and a moderate obsession with alcohol, you'll love this. I came across this report whilst doing some research on mental health and alcohol use for an article. I wanted to copy and paste bits for you to read but there's so much I think that's important, so, I recommend you print, staple, pour yourself ONE glass of your favourite drink and read, not all at once as there's a lot to take in, just click on the link below.


http://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/content/assets/PDF/publications/cheers_report.pdf

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Give me a customer services job and a dull husband any day.



Without the working structure of a nine to five job, where all I have are lose deadlines for possible articles, surrounded by a wool and fabric explosion, it's easy to get overwhelmed and underwhelmed at the same time and lately I often find myself closing the laptop, detangling myself, cracking open a bottle of Gin and absorbing myself in True Movies. 

I need to be careful here, not only does the lithium exageratte my senses, making me more subseptable to my surroundings (or those on the TV) but the Gin magnifies that, and I need to watch that I don't think I'm in Southern America in the mid nineties, on trial for killing my husband for his hansome life insurance, having given my eight kids up for adoption - all of which were switched at birth - whilst I recover from a fall out of a twenty story window that I was pushed but survived with courage and I dodge the death sentence by seducing the judge whom I also find out is my long lost father. It's a BIG identity crisis to take in.


So I am currently surrounded by half empty diary entries, penciled appointments, possible workshop rentals, and trying to find sctructure out of chaos, amongst everything half finished around me - notes, research, inteview tapes, photo's, knitting, fabric cuts, whilst cooking and singing along to Starship with half my head in rollers and half a glass of g&t.

Somebody told me that people with bipolar find structure difficult. No shit! And I can add that when we finally find it, some of us get overwhelmed and sabotage it, burn food and singe hair. 

Give me a customer services job and a dull husband any day.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

My name is Mark Hollis


Seems kind of weird that I'm in my thirtees now and still need parental control switched on on the TV. 

Why? 
Porn addiction? No. 
Disturbing RSPCA commercials? Usually but not this time. 
Footage of eightiees pop band Talk Talk? YES. 

Something surreal very recently happened to me. Bear in mind I've been on a rocketing 1250mg of lithium daily. All my senses have been heightened - I've been hearing stuff in the house I'd never heard before like air cons, distant trains, next door but one's favourite method of pleasuring himself - and my vision has been so blurry I haven't been able to work, words on screens manifest then disappear, think doing ketamin on a trampoline. 

I became hooked on certain visual stimuli like my life depended on it and there happened to be some footage of Mark Hollis from Talk Talk on Sky Arts and I got sucked into him, like a drowning sensation through into his veins, and I actually, sort of, though very convinced, thought I was him, Mark Hollis, and this went on for nearly two days. I was obsessed, talked of/played/thought about no-one else.

My partner Nail made the mistake of teling me that his band, Bent, had contacted  Hollis re doing some vocals and had a response (a letter) somewhere when just fed my obsession than satisfied it "I need that letter!!" I screamed. 

So Nail marched me to my GP who told me I was having a reaction to the lithium (or the dose of) so I've reduced down to 750mg via 1000mg where I'm still in range (lithium blood count) so am at a theraputic dose to prevent episodes. 

So a little red (manic), a little blue, (blue) but I have no plans for a come back tour. 

Caffiene, Cocaine, Cherryade Or Just Plain Mania?


Admittedly I'm as high as a kite!!

It's like I've downed a spoon full of coffee granules dusted with cocaine down with cherryade - the hard cheap stuff at birthday parties when you were five. My shoulders are permanently hunched, my hands are shaking and ideas are flowing in (and out) of my brain  at the speed of light. I have so/too much to do in these short sharp hours of this finger click of a day. 

I did go with the boyfriend to see his therapist this afternoon - between manic bouts of knitting - to give my support, but there's a fine, paper cut line between offering support and not letting either of them get a word in edge ways with my ramblings. 

Whether that happened in the room or in my head I don't know but I'll perhaps show my support by not going next time.

pic: dried chilli's. the good hard stuff.

Running Away, Compulsive Spending, and Cadbury's Cream Eggs



I ran away recently. I felt like life was taking the p**s out of me. I also felt like a massive rubber band was holding me back from doing things everyone else seemed to be doing. So I packed a bag, my passport, my charger - although I wasn't answering my calls to anyone I still needed to know that people were calling. I thought about Scotland, Holland, and Malta, but I only made it as far as Oxford Street. 

The instinct to run away transformed into an impulse to spend. Clothes, shoes... lunch. More clothes more shoes, gin and tonic. More clothes, shoes, coffee.. I flanked out by the time I got to Spitalfields and rand the boyfriend I left that morning in such a huff and asked if he could help me cary my shopping home and he did, as usual very understanding of my mood swings, he gets a cadburys cream egg.

Turns out I didn't need to run away, just needed a bit of me time and a bit of a blow out. Note to self - need to learn how to downscale from what I think is happening to what actually is. It's like yesterday morning when I got a letter from Virgin Media I panicked and ran to the shops to get a bottle of wine (at 11am) to find it was just small leaflet in a large envelope. Curse you Richard Branson!

The clothes and shoes will no doubt stay in the bag for three weeks and then be the victims of shopping in reverse. I do it for the buzz, I have no room for more clothes or shoes - my bedroom looks like a car boot sale.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Staying in and knitting is the new going out and getting twat*ed



It may not be as rock n roll as shoplifting and cocaine but knitting is something that keeps me..
-Indoors (out of trouble)
-Quiet (minimises compulsive questioning
-Focused (on something physical)
.. and gives me a head start, so when I'm in an old peoples home I'll be able to knit my way into the hardest gang, punch colostomy bags with my needles should anyway nick my Garlbaldis.


Here lies some more of my knitting and fabrications. http://nanscabinet.blogspot.com/

Monday, 25 July 2011

RIP Amy Winehouse



Well Amy sadly passed away  on Saturday leaving hundreds of thousands of mourning fans in shock. Of course there's always a few people starved of emotional intelligence who get there mobile phones out and start tweeting what a crack whore she was and then scan the net for sick jokes to upload to Facebook, but the reality is, dependancy is a condition, bulimia is a condition, and this woman was ill. Whether or not the rumours about Amy being diagnosed with bipolar are true, I cannot stress enough the importance of taking medication prescribed by your GP. I've met many people suffering from dual diagnosis (where mental health and addiction are present) and seen what happens when they don't take their meds, even just for a few days. 


Hmm.. I feel like I'm giving out the "Just Say No" message in reverse, so I'm going to link up.



RIP Amy.