normalcy overshot. dec 12-17th.

(WARNING: this post took six days to write, so it might take as long for you to read it...)

i saw my shrink on monday. it changed everything.

here i am, feeling great, happy, productive, creative, excited.

i almost canceled the appointment, because i didn't feel like i had anything to work through. nothing tough, nothing sad, nothing keeping me up at night with worry.

for three weeks now, i've been trying to do all the things.

i've been making unreasonable deadlines for myself and everyone around me.

but the problem is that one thing leads to another. and pretty soon, i'm doing everything.

starting everything. burning out. taking a break from it. and finishing everything.

it's also led to spending a RETARDED sum of money in the last two months. more money than i have, in fact.

a few days after the black friday mini spree, i lost my checkbook. it proved to be a very stressful predicament, because i am pretty meticulous when it comes to my money. and i'd lost track, due to all the shopping. i gave up on ever finding it and started a new register, and balanced it only once.

i had $2 in my bank account, due to the double happy pills charge. then i got paid, got rent and went crazy at home depot, three trips for paint and supplies in one week. it was rough. money is my main source of stress, and i went from being way ahead to borrowing money to keep from overdrawing my account.

i paid all the bills late, which i never do. and freaked out on tuesday when capital one called because i missed a payment. because i am so on the ball, they didn't charge a fee or raise my apr. i considered myself lucky. i haven't missed either of two credit card payments once in the past year. it was kindof a big deal to me.

this week, i've lost track of money again. i haven't balanced my books since i started over. it's been two weeks. and the not knowing drives me batty. especially in the throes of planning my first epic house party.

i borrowed money from a deposit in the amount of the check i was owed for the shrink copayment check. to keep from overdrawing a second time.

and i've used my credit card again. i'd been making serious headway, getting out of debt. i got the card frede and i had maxed out at 10k, to around $800. it was not easy. the account that is still open had about $500 on it for emergencies. until i bought my new glasses with it. and until today, when i put another $100 on it. and another $150.

i shouldn't be using it. but i am. to spend money i don't have on things i feel like i need. it was aubree who pointed out that i need to stop with the gifts.

i did this the most when i was 19, i guess, but off and on since. i get on a kick where i luck into things that are perfect for my friends, and i have an impossible time saying no. she's been trying to keep me in check with it.

and of all the things i think of when i think of bipolar, it's the shopping sprees that scare me most. i'm not textbook bipolar 1, so it's not to the tune of thousands of dollars, like you hear about. but i definitely will go months without shopping at all, and when i do? i drop about $500 at a time. and with black friday, and the house, and the party(s), i haven't been this strapped in a while.

all because i just want to do all the things at the house, while i'm on a roll. i want to be DONE with all the projects so i can just relax and enjoy what i've done.

but i feel like i can't get there. i mean, the dad trip was awesome. and the carpet. but once we started the painting, i just want every room to look as awesome as the ones that are painted.

it also makes me think about the lottery. greg was both crazy AND stupid about it. i had a three ticket a week thing going for months before i met him, and when he brought up his lottery habit, it struck me. i know that a lot of people play, but he had it all figured out. he's the tax man. so he knew what to do when you win, because he was CONVINCED he would win it. but he'd drop like $20 a week on it, and not even check his tickets if no one won the powerball. with that substantial a habit, it drove me crazy that he didn't even bother to check his tickets. who knows how much money he has literally thrown away.

insane. but i, too, feel that i could win it. i think i'm a good person, and i am a giving person, almost to a fault. and i feel like i deserve it, when i'm working so tirelessly. so is that problematic in light of this? luckily, buying lottery tickets made me think of all the plans we made together when we were going to someday win together. so i had stopped for months. aubree gives me a lot of shit about wasting money on the lottery, too. so it kept me stopped when associating it with greg didn't. but i'm back on the kick again now, the $3 a week habit.

and then there's my desire to finally get the white half sleeve tattoo. i don't know if i'm still high from getting the telescope i've been pining after for two and a half years, and want the tattoo because the last time was so amazing. or if it's a desire to finally get something i've wanted for so much longer - fifteen years, since i drew the thing.

i want to drop the $300 i think it would cost to have it. and because i'm faithful to my tattoo artist (ol' dirty rob), i want him to do it. and i'm going home. so i want it now.

i guess the session started off at a normal clip. i told her that i didn't have much to talk about. that, for the most part, i have been doing well. fixing the house, not thinking about greg so much, and getting a lot done in every facet of my life.

i've noticed that i've been talking faster lately. it's kindof the same way that i have been writing volumes. i feel like my fingers can barely keep up with my thoughts, to write. i'm afraid to forget anything, so this post actually started out as a laundry list of one word things to write about. like cliff notes for this novella that has been my life in the last two weeks.

in any case, she noticed it. i was aware, but it didn't seem so strange. i explained that i didn't get much sleep the night before, and that i've been a little off lately. staying up super late painting and working on the house, and waking up for work at the normal time of 7 am. the sleep problems started when my neck and back started hurting. i thought i slept wrong, and had a kink in my neck. but it didn't go away for five days. now i wonder if i slept wrong, or if this is some weird effect of hypomania (which was brought to my attention on the crazy meds site page for the medication she wants to put me on). i am completely smitten with that website. the language he uses and the way he explains everything is so real and funny, using humor to make light of some seriously disturbing shit. one night i was up until 3, it was because i was trying to read his entire site in a night.

i didn't notice that the look on her face changed. and i kept talking, right into the next topic, probably the house and my sister.

that morning, i felt like the trip was going to be a waste. but when i got there, i was talking fast, and cramming in all this stuff, and easily could have talked for another whole hour, if she wasn't going to leave for the day.

my last few visits have been stretching it to try to talk for 40 minutes. when we hit the hour mark, she stopped me and asked to go back to something i'd just said.

pretty consistently, i'm her last patient of the day. i try to get her latest appointment, which is only 4 on mondays. so running over time wasn't doing anything but keeping her from going home. it was nice that she let me run over my time. until she started telling me why she wanted me to talk more.

she wanted to go back to a comment i made about starting the new blog and how i hadn't written more than four posts last month, and how, day one of this blog i had two, and at the end of the first week, even though they're drafts, i have eight.

feast or famine. i told her that i think it might be seasonal, because i'm very productive and prolific with words in the spring and fall when the weather is nice, and that usually i'm in a pretty good mood then, too. and that i want to write all day. and that, in the summer and winter, when it's either stupid hot or retarded cold, i don't feel like writing all that much, i prefer to hibernate.

i used the phrase 'mini manic phase', in talking about the writing. i have done this my whole life. and i told her that, if she looked at the boxes filled with every journal i've ever written, she'd see one or two journals for summer and winter. and ten or twenty for fall and spring. it's always been this way. and fall is even more so than the spring.

so i was saying that i guess it's the weather making me revert back to being inspired to write.

and she came back to it.

she had this look in her eye that i'd never seen before. genuine concern. i have lost my shit in her office over ever, over greg, over the divorce, over money, over the house. and she has never looked concerned, even when i can't speak for crying so hard.

but that day, she had this look. and here i am, talking a mile a minute, about a bunch of random shit, in a disconnected way as it pops into my brain. telling her many things i've been accomplishing and how awesome i feel about it.

and going on to say that i either feel like everything is lining up perfectly, or nothing is going right. and that, the past two weeks, with the party and life in general, i've made so much progress that everything has lined up perfectly. little coincidences that i give too much attention to that make me feel like my life is on the right path. i go through phases of that, too, and told her so.

i told her i've been feeling really good, and have been super social and doing so much, and attribute it to feeling better and coming off of an epic birthday weekend trip celebration.

and she said, very seriously, leaning in, that she is actually concerned.

and said, 'i don't want to worry you, but i think that putting you on lexapro has put you beyond the level of happy that it is supposed to.

'i want to go back to something you said. tea, i've been seeing you for two years now, and i have never seen you like this. sometimes, rarely, patients get on antidepressants, and eliminate their depression. and then they overshoot feeling good. sometimes, an antidepressant can break through depresson and expose underlying issues. you said something about a mini-manic phase. let's talk about that.'

so i went through the writing stuff with her then, and about the house.

and she said, 'ok. i think that putting you on lexapro is exposing some bipolar tendencies.'

and i fucking freaked out.

'i think you might be on the bipolar spectrum, in a phase called 'hypomania'. i know that you know that you are not textbook. you are definitely not bipolar 1. but you might be bipolar 2. it's the light version, at the low end of the spectrum. and we need to talk about meds. i know you don't want to be more medicated than you already are, but my concern here is that you're really up right now, and if i'm right about the spectrum, you will crash. and i don't want that to happen.'

i was speechless. my head was swimming. thinking about how devastating the news of greg being diagnosed as bipolar was to me when i found out. and how alice had told me the meds he was given affected him so negatively until he balanced out.

i told her that it's in my family. mimi and her son both have it, he is medicated for it, because he is textbook. mimi takes antidepressants when she is low, and nothing when she is up.

and the worst part is, i have consistently written about wondering if i was. it falls under the category of diagnosing myself with a myriad of ailments. but bipolar has come up more than anything, because of how moody i am, and how it changes at the drop of a hat. one tiny incident has the power to send me to the other end of things.

in a way, when she said it, i felt relieved. unlike the lump in my arm, where it's obviously there, but somehow doctors can tell me 'nothing is wrong'. it felt good to feel like i have been right all along.

but once that feeling wore off, which was very quickly, i might add, i really started to freak out.

so she told me her plan for me. she said to cut all my lexapro in half. to dial back my dose to see what happens. that i'll feel better in a week, and that we can talk again when i'm back from florida, and reevaluate. we both agreed that cutting back the meds might be enough to balance me out.

it was scary, because i'm three months in. and she said this is the point where i've acclimated to the medication. and i am completely depending on the fact that cutting my tiny pills in half will fix me.

because i cannot deal with the alternative. she told me to research what she wants to talk about putting me on. which scares me, too. and that she won't change my meds because she knows how much i love lexapro, unless she absolutely has to.

i don't believe in taking meds to combat meds.

and of course, part of me is refusing to believe that i might actually be loosely diagnosed as bipolar.

fuck me. it's serious.

and at the same time? i feel like i've known all along in a way.

and on my own, without coming to that conclusion, i've been self medicating. i had been taking ativan, without thinking about why. i have been smoking weed for the past three months. and occasionally drinking. until the last week or two, i wouldn't mix them. but the past two weeks, i've been smoking and then having a drink after.

and all the time spent painting, i have been drinking. one night, i was drinking straight out of the bottle of cold duck, more than half. didn't even get tipsy. it feels like balancing myself out. the stress and work of painting needed to be taken down with weed and alcohol.

i've been self medicating, without realizing it.

i've been trying to slow myself down.

so it goes. i'm six days into a half dose. every day i feel a little better. i'm glad i saw her when i did, because that had only been two days of feeling wonky. it's now been a week of feeling wonky.

but it's tapering off.

and i told her that once the party is behind me, i won't feel like i'm so frantically doing everything. and that two weeks away from my house, after the birthday celebrating is over, will probably fix me.

i really hope so. in the meantime, i'm in this state. i was before i knew her suspicions. and now that i know them, i can't tell if i'm applying signs backwards, or having symptoms because i am aware of it. am i over classifying, or is it legit?

one of the harder things for me to admit to right now is that i'm having an overwhelming desire to connect with greg over this. and part of me is afraid that part of my believing her and applying all of the criteria to my life is just one more way that i'm refusing to let go of him, and STILL trying to connect with him.

i'm back to where i was, applying new information to everything that happened with him.

and knowing that, if shrink is right, this makes even more sense than just knowing that he was bipolar.

we both were in a manic upswing, mine was brought on by the insane connection with him, and meeting him in the flesh for the first time.

and because he is the only person i know who is going through this at the same time i am, getting used to knowing something about yourself that is both surprising and overwhelming, i want to tell him.

it's the worst thing for me. i cannot do it. one of the four posts i've titled as a draft is a letter to him. because i can't do it in real life, i want to get it out of my system and post it, to alleviate the pressure i feel to do it. to do it, without causing any harm. all the payoff, none of the risk.

another return to another old habit. i know now that it is some form of self-harm. nothing good can come from it.

and before any of this came up, i overthought slipping into another old habit the night i went to the bar to see dan. it reminded me of how i used to drive to the coffee house to see coffee, killing time in the area until the bar opened. and just the fact that i know better than to get mixed up with a hot bartender, because it used to drive me absolutely insane to see him flirting with other girls the way he flirted with me. it made it feel like it wasn't genuine. and i don't think i should go down that path again. but not going back for a month should take care of that, and seeing how he acts the next time will be a pretty good indicator if there is interest, especially when i have aubree in tow to gauge it and help with my awkwardness.

i started to notice just after that last appointment (a few weeks ago), that i felt sexually awake. i wrote that i couldn't decide if i was rebelling against her saying i wasn't ready, or if it was genuine. but since that change, i've been having some pretty hot dreams. for a week, it was every single night. chalk, 19 year old boyfriend, chris, mcqueen. super random, and every night someone different. and i have been noticing how many hot dudes are walking around all day every day. is it that my standards are lower, because it's been SIX AND A HALF FUCKING MONTHS (well, NOT fucking), or that i need it, or something else. after reading the hypomania description, now i'm attributing it to that.

not to mention, that one day when i texted intern and greg, indirectly proposing sex. i got to the point where i was so desperate for a sexual connection that i cast aside my normal personality, and just went for it.

in any case, she said she doesn't want to put me on a mood stabilizer like lithium or anything heavy. that what she'd prescribe is the least strong of all of the meds, to research it and entertain the thought, in case that is what she recommends.

and then things got real. she said that, because i'm so in tune with myself, and tell her what's going on (i didn't think to mention weed and drinking, but i REALLY wish i had), and know when i don't feel right, that she won't force me to change meds right away. she understands my reluctance.

i'm taking aubree with me, when i go. she wanted to see me as soon as possible, so i'm going in the morning after we get back from home.

aubree thinks she's totally wrong. and she thinks that using the word manic to describe these phases made her jump to an incorrect conclusion.

i think having her there would show what my session is like, and would give an objective opinion to provide my shrink with, so she gets the real story, not my version based on my own perception.

she commanded me to call her if my sleep doesn't return to normal within the first week of meds, if not sooner. of all the things that got her attention, the lack of sleep from increased productivity was probably the biggest sign of trouble to her.

she explained that, by overshooting well-adjusted happiness, if she is right, i'm heading for a crash that she doesn't want me to experience. hence the dialing back of lexapro. and that if the half dose doesn't work in the time between appointments, we have to talk about the next course of meds.

it fucked with me for the rest of the night, and has been fucking with me ever since.

i'm trying to think myself well. trying to convince myself that cutting my dose will help, because i honestly don't want to live my life without lexapro. it has helped me so much. and she said that she's afraid that if i'm not honest with her, that the hypomania will continue to feel super awesome, until it ends. the pendulum is not headed in a way she wants me to swing, because she thinks i'm headed for a fall.

and that is scary, too.

i'm just trying to put it out of my mind for another week. i'm afraid that thinking about it will make the outcome different.

to back up a little, my sleep has been all fucked up for a few weeks now. trying to paint everything, until all hours of the night. staying up and writing after a serious drought - maybe the longest since i started cwsr. and waking up too early (like 7 every day, without an alarm) and unable to go back to sleep.

my eating has been severely screwed up, too, because of my sleep. i'm waking up nauseous and not being able to stomach food while i'm at work, in the store with access to food. then busy days spent driving, when i don't take time to stop. and then coming home and working on the house so much.

for about a week now, my first meal has been around 6 or 7 pm. and i pig out, trying to eat three meals' worth of food in one sitting. and then get hungry and eat again super late, maybe 11 or midnight. and it's all carbs, so i attribute the being up late half of the problem partially to the food i want to eat that late at night.

last weekend, because of the birthday stuff i was wonky, too. friday night i was up until after 2 because of the show and the subsequent telescope surprise party. saturday i woke up at 7, pissed to be awake, and feeling racy like a panic attack, but not panicking mentally. i took an ativan and tried to go back to sleep, but couldn't.

i popped another ativan when i got in the car to go to work on monday, hours before the shrink appointment. i had the same racy feeling, like i'd had too much coffee, before i had even had a sip. i switched back to half caff this week. sigh...

after a very long time (month and a half) of not using ativan more than one time, i've been popping them right when i wake up in the morning. it's a strange sensation. i feel like i can't get comfortable. my body is hot and cold, and when i adjust the heat to accomodate, i'm still uncomfortable. it's an old familiar feeling of not being comfortable in my own skin. i feel restless.

i feel FAST.

the morning is my time. i wake up, despite lack of sleep, feeling very inspired. the timing truly sucks, because i really want to spend all morning writing, when i have to go to work. and then when i get home, i don't want to do it anymore. or maybe it's just that i'm doing too many other things, and don't have time/energy to do it then.

but i have four posts started, to edit, right now.

there are so many things that are happening, that i really want to get onto 'paper' and process and think and write about. but i don't have the time to do it.

this will all change on monday when i hop a flight to florida for two and a half weeks. i will have all the time in the world to write down ALL OF THE THINGS.

and i've been burdened with wanting to write. what is really strange is that nina gave me the name of a dictation app. since i write how i speak, you'd think this would be the best possible thing. i could paint and blog at the same time?!? but instead, it's the writing/typing that i work well with. speaking just wasn't doing it for me. i gave up after three tries. i also have always hated my recorded voice (even on voicemail), and i think that had something to do with it.

it also makes me think of the coffee days, when i would carry around that little recorder, thinking everything i was thinking of and saying was so fucking profound. struck by inspiration all the time, and listening to them a couple years later in tahoe when i was snowed in. it was horrifying. so maybe it's a little too close to that for me.

but all of the things that are changing so quickly around me are making want to write them all out. i can't type fast enough. and i didn't think anything of the fact that my initial post on this blog was so lengthy. it just felt like a lot of pent up stuff that i was releasing, after a hiatus from writing.

but in light of the shrink visit, now i fear that it's something else altogether. i just can't stop, and i don't feel like i want to.

it made me re-watch harriet the spy the other night while i was painting my room in a marathon manner.

'i want to see the world, and i want to write down EVERYTHING!'

it feels like that. only i'm not a 12 year old little girl.

watching that movie made me feel even more inspired to write, as if this hasn't been hard enough on me already.

right now? i should be mopping. i should paint the one door that is making me insane.

but that will lead to painting two doors and then the third, and cleaning everything else.

and i just can't do that again today. so i'm finally making the time to write that i have been craving for a solid week.

which is a beautiful segue into trying to do all of the things.

how i get these bad little seeds of an idea wedged in my brain, i will never know. and why i am so stubborn and particular, i will also never know. take for example, the christmas tree.

i have no need for a christmas tree. especially not a week before i go to florida for two weeks. but i was throwing a party, and i just HAD to have one. i'm flat broke. whatever. fucking had to have one. so we bought one.

and i justified this by deciding to get one string of lights and one little thing of ornaments. like, 'see? it doesn't have to be expensive'.

until it looked bare and the lights made a belt around the middle of my pear shaped tree.

two christmas tree lots, and three trips for lights/ornaments later, it was done. i probably spent about four hours of my spare time on this tree. because i just had to have it for the party.

or, how about the keg? i invited about 70 people over for a birthday/house showing off party. so i decided i wanted to get a keg. what i learned after i decided to get the keg should absolutely have changed my mind about it. first of all, i got the tiniest keg that you can get. it's about two and a half cases of beer.

for the same money, and without the deposit of $70, i could have had three cases of blue moon in bottles. so ask me why i got a keg? because i just HAD to have it for the party. like the tree. to say that i had one.

and now, because i didn't change my mind, unlike the bottles i could have purchased and left here while i am home, i gave myself two days to try to drink a pony keg of beer, so i can return it before i leave.

i prefer beer on draught, so i guess that is why i got it. but the people who showed up to the party all brought their own drinks, so aubree, kit, eve, and i were the only ones drinking from it. last night, we went at it and successfully finished it, with the added help of alice and cody.

the decision was stupid.

and the party. i was so so excited for everyone to see the house this way, because the last time they were in it, ever was using, and it literally looked, felt, and smelled like a crack den. a house kept by someone who was very very unwell.

i was telling the writer in a chat the other night that, in the last two and a half years since we first finished the renovating to the point we could move in, this is the first time i have been proud of my house.

i was so excited to show it off to people who practically lived in it, or did live in it. and not a single one of them showed up last night. it was really disappointing. and the result: yesterday, before the second party, i unfriended a bunch of people on facebook who always ignore me. even when i comment on things to them. and who didn't express any interest in seeing me, or the house.

up to and including... intern.

done. moving on...

i woke up sad about it yesterday, because we had the most fun party i think i've ever thrown. all my best friends showed up, which is why it was the best party ever. but all the work and stress to get it done specifically to show it off felt like a waste.

my real friends are stoked on the progress so far, and none of them judge me for not mopping or vacuuming. they know how much work it takes, because they have been helping me for a month and they all know what it took to get it this far.

i can't help wanting this to be done before i leave, so that after i relax at home and have christmas, new years, and vacation time poolside, i don't get stressed on the house when i come back. i don't want to come back to more work.

it's rough.

so... carry this information out exponentially. all aspects of my life. i am fixated on stupid shit, and am having an impossible time focusing on the big picture.

i haven't bought a single christmas present for anyone, but have a bunch of christmas lights for the outside of the house, that i ran out of time to hang. i didn't have time to clean my house for the party, because i was organizing shit in my bedroom, because i wanted my room put back together. the one room in the house that, as aubree so smartly pointed out, i can close the door and no one would even know that it was a mess.

but i can also admit that, thinking chris was going to show, i wanted my room together for the sake of hosting a boy. i (idiotically) put a condom on my nightstand, hidden under my lamp. i was CONVINCED i was going to get laid on friday night.

i stopped cleaning my room, and shut the door. cleaned the first floor a little, before getting ready.

what's making this all worse is that i am having an impossible time multitasking. and i'm very scattered. and i've been more disorganized than i usually am.

i gauge this in one way, for the most part: cleaning out my knapsack. usually i can make it about a week before i reorganize my bag. when i'm in a hurry, i shove everything in, always, without any rhyme or reason. i'm not normally in such a hurry, so it delays the reorganization. but every day for the last week plus, i've stayed in a hurry. usually, it will be a week before things are no longer in their compartments, i can't find things i need, and money is all over the place, loose in every compartment, so that when i take something out, usually a bill will fall on the ground. sometimes i wonder if someone just follows me around to pick up all the things i drop when i'm spaced out and walking. but the big compartment in the bag becomes a catchall.

this week, after one day, i couldn't find anything. and out of frustration, i dumped my entire bag on the floor to reorganize it. i put everything where it made most sense to me, access-wise. and went to work. when i got home from work, i couldn't find my work phone. and i was digging in all the pockets. i could not find it.

so i dumped my bag on the couch to find it.

i've done this every single day this week. it's like, on a daily basis, i just cram shit wherever i can find room, and don't think about the fact that i might need to find it later. it sucks.

i'm a fucking MESS. and my car? ugh.

i have cleaned it out three days this week, because i spent every day this week driving to delaware and running work errands, and house errands. repeatedly trashing my car.

the problem with all this reorganizing is that i feel this need to do it before i can focus on something else. when i went to the office on tuesday (day two of three), i dumped my bag in the floor to find all of the deposit tickets and printouts i needed for my paperwork. usually, i have all of them in one bag, clipped. there is no digging necessary. but instead of getting them out and working on it, i dumped and organized my bag at the office so i could focus on work.

this is something new to me. i'm usually pretty adept at working through an organized mess. i usually know where everything is. but it feels like i'm doing so much, so quickly, that i can't remember what i did. i keep finding things in places i don't remember putting them. making me wonder if there's also a little gnome following me and moving all my shit around so i can't find it.

joking. i'm not THAT crazy.

but i digress....

twice, in the last week, i've been on my way, walking to my car from the store, only to realize that my keys are back in the store. it's ridiculous. i've been working at this store for what, two years now? i have never left my keys before. other people have. and one of the first things i told aubree when she started working there was to always check for her keys before she leaves for the car.

and i guess i'm just so distracted by my thoughts that i am not able to do the little mental checklist before leaving the store. if i have my phone and headphones and cigarettes and lighter, it's all good. who needs keys?

what this whole week feels like, is how the house used to overwhelm me. i would let little things pile up for weeks, and then decide to put things back together, and get overwhelmed at the size of the task. and i'd have a hard time powering through it. and give up pretty often. and take lots of smoke breaks.

but this week, it's about work. there are all these little loose ends that have been pushed off and pushed off. kenna isn't calling me like she says she will, so i'm not (as) motivated to stay on task and take care of shit.

but i realized, 'holy shit! i'm going to florida for two and a half weeks. i have a lot to do before i go...'

so i spent every day this week doing all of those things. three days in delaware.

i have also become increasingly impatient. instead of waiting for things to happen, or letting other people do what i need them to do. and it translates to driving. aubree has been pointing out that i've been driving worse. she started saying,'pump the brakes' when it's time to slow down to stop. and after that, i started to realize it was happening when i was driving alone. and more often. especially because i have been driving more, it's been happening more. i think it's related to the whole multitasking/focusing thing. my mind is wandering while i'm driving, and i come back to the road, and have to hit the brakes harder to stop in time. it's kindof scary.

spending all of the time in the car also has given me more time to think, and listen to music. and, reminiscent of other times in my life, too, i keep finding myself thinking, 'this is my best mix EVER!' most of the time, when i finally finish one, that's how i feel about it. but this one makes me want to say, 'really, though. seriously? the BEST.'

and it's troublesome to me because i'll probably not feel that way in another week or so. and so it feels a little inflated. and i've done the same thing/said the same thing about my writing. the initial post [on my new blog] was 'the best post i've written', and before that, the last post on cwsr was 'the best post i've written'.

how can every post be the longest post? and the best post? i feel like the length of the posts are also indicative of a problem. because at first, i just thought i hadn't written in a while, so i didn't think anything of it. like, i was just catching up.

but it's the same way i've been in my daily life. talking more, thinking more, doing more. and your eyes will tell you that it's happening in my writing, too. the only thing that makes me okay with it is that i'm not repeating things i've said before. it all feels new. which makes writing it out feel that much better. getting it out of my system. processing. the usual.

and in the mix, i figured out that dan has been stealing, so i had to talk to security and watch footage to try to catch him. so add that to the loose ends list.

after hectic days spent driving through a tank and a half of gas, all the loose ends are tied, and dan is fired.

and somehow, i feel like a dog on a scent. sniffing out anything else that i forgot before i leave, trying to think of everything.

i've been having an impossible time focusing, multitasking, doing simple math i do on a daily basis. to the extent of stopping somewhere, just to do one thing at a time. stop the car in the parking lot to organize my bag. wait until i'm parked to do my books. stop the car to use the phone. stop mid-step to text.

more frequently, i'll get into trouble with counting money. it's such an easy task for me, and i excel at mental math. it's something i've always naturally been good at. but when i got on lexapro, it was a problem for a few days, and since i've cut back the dose, the first few days were spent counting and recounting, when adding up deposits, and using a calculator for simple math, because i became aware that i couldn't trust myself.

it's strange. i pride myself in my ability to multitask. and WELL. so this is something that doesn't make any sense to me.

one of the biggest, most pervasive changes for me is both work and life related. before meds, i worried so much that i never forgot anything. once i was able to deal with taking care of what i was worrying about, as opposed to not dealing with things and worrying endlessly, my life improved drastically. then i wasn't worrying, and just knowing what i needed to do. there were about three months, post medication, where i was completely on point with doing everything. but then, in the last few weeks, i switched to not caring. and not being able to focus. and it meant that i let things slide and pile up, without the repercussion of having an overwhelmed feeling to bring me back to reality and make me do the things i need to do.

realizing it was happening made me make lists. and lists and lists and lists. but i'd forget to put things on the list, getting distracted, and forgetting to do really important shit.

it reminds me of the 75 item list of all the things greg and i planned to do together, which was the last time i was living in list land.

i'm getting back to the point where i'm actively dealing with my lists on a daily basis, several times a day, because i became aware that i needed to do it to make it through a day. but because i've been trying to do all the things, the lists are out of control.

it will be intersting to see what happens when i'm home, and when i come back. because i forced myself to take care of everything before i leave town. i hope i don't spend my vacation making lists of things i can't take care of, due to being away from here. time will tell...

when i stopped caring about work again for a minute there, i actually overslept one day. my sleep has been so off, with being up so late at night, that it finally resulted in affecting the job i do. i was so tired, i turned off the alarm in my sleep and woke up an hour later than i needed to.

the last time i overslept for work was almost a year ago, and not my fault. it was the day i threw away my alarm clock, because i had set it correctly, and it didn't go off. i started using my trusty phone after that.

this post has taken forever to write. the cliff notes assured me that i wouldn't leave anything out, but like me, they were so scattered and unrelated it took almost as long to organize this post as it did to actually write the shit out.

will this feeling go away? i don't want to take this drug:

i don't want to have this diagnosis:

but in light of everything i just posted here, i feel like i definitely fit the criteria for the hypomania diagnosis.

each of you has commented or asked me if i think shrink is right, if i believe that what she said is accurate, or if what she told me is incorrect.

and my biggest fear right now is that she is right.

i wrote out all of this as a way to track how i've been feeling, and to explain to each of you why i believe her.

the only thing i'm taking comfort in is that i am already feeling better. day six of half dose was only slightly speedy, and i forced myself to not do everything for the second party, and listened to kim about just relaxing. and today i feel normal.

whatever that means...

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