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2004-11-15 @ 11:42 p.m.
running with the crazies, but I mean it in a nice way


I just worked my first full day since 2001. Woo. Iím tired.

Iím not complaining. Itís just a new thing to actually have to concentrate and interact with people for 9 straight hours. My brain hurts. I sort of feel like my muscles have been tensed for 9 hours and I just relaxed. Theyíre sore. Itís not that I did anything particularly taxing, other than a mini-panic attack when I got into the elevator this morning. Iím still having work-related anxiety, ya see. But like:

  • 10-12 Meeting

  • 12-12:30 lunch

  • 12:30-2:30 Helping facilitate a support group

  • 2:45-4:15 team member training

  • 4:15-7:00 Dinner and a movie for clients

    I did manage to only cry twice today. (damn. I guess it was only a matter of time before that happened. I cry very easily, right ďAĒ?) I cried once during our first general meeting, I guess because I had just had a panic attack and was still having some overwhelming feelings and had no place to dispose of them before I went in. And then during the training session when asked ďWhen did I expect my recovery to be complete?Ē

    Ummm, never?

    It wasnít meant to be like a specific question, like Tuesday, November 20th, 2020, but I really feel like I will never recover from bipolar disorder. Iíve come a long way in the last few years due to the spectacular help of ďAĒ, but we have also uprooted some incredibly deep hurts that I donít think will ever be healed. And Iíve also got some really intense fears around personal relationships and sex and my recent break with Married Guy has left me so devastated that I feel like I never ever want to give another person my heart, because it hurts too much to have it stomped on. Yes you, Married Guy. And even though I knew it was a hopeless relationship, it was pretty damn near impossible, not to let my feelings grow for someone when they were encouraged in such an enthusiastic and loving manner. And yes, he did encourage them. And he was also the first person I was ever involved with who made me feel safe. And I donít feel safe anywhere. Literally. And I really miss that.

    But having a full day At The Office for the first time since 2001, also, in a way, reminded me of what always made work so difficult. Personalities. I like everyone I have been in contact with, but I am already growing uncomfortable with one woman. She is treating me like sheís idolizing me. And its creeping me out a little. Ok. Alot. Sheís probably in her mid-20ís, possibly gay, and she corners me alot. Sheís very soft spoken and knows that I have an interest in art, so now she is carrying around a sketchpad with her. The other day she was lugging around a big huge artbook about Impressionism and was reading it when we were suppose to meet. That is one of my least favorite kinds of art, so I had to break the bad news. Yuck. Impressionism. She seemed wounded. Today she brought up the fact that there is going to be a fund raising craft show shortly. It supports a local political organization that I wear a pin for. She asked me to go with her. She said if my car is still on the fritz her mother would come and pick me up.

    I donít want to hurt her feelings or jeopardize a relationship with a new co-worker, but her extreme interest in me, is making me really uncomfortable. Even if it was a guy, Iíd be squirming. I guess, Iím not used to getting so much attention. Yarg. Witty...the object of someoneís affection. Impossible!

    Why couldnít it be an impossibly rich, dark haired, compassionate, earth friendly, politically correct, funny, smart, non-conflicted, emotionally healthy, yet slightly edgy guy who is sensitive, writes poetry, has a paid for house, a paid for car, a paid off Gold Card Visa, no criminal record, willing to lick me wherever I want, clean the cat box, not sell our sex videos on the internet, buy me flowers ďjust ĎcuzĒ, commiserate with me about my mother, rub my feet, give me a reason NOT to take clonopin, treat Guardcat with the respect she deserves, Rub my feet (oh wait, I said that already), and whatís that last one? Oh yes...love me.

    Meh, not asking much, am I?

    I guess you can tell Iím bipolar because I just said, that I never wanted to give me heart to anyone again, and here I am offering it to the first ďperfectĒ man to come along. But I guess it could potentially be a LONG wait, if the word Perfect and Man are in the same sentence.

    But it was weird after being isolated for so long, to suddenly have to be on alert all day. And I was wondering if my work persona today was really me, or the ďworkĒ me, or some weird hybrid Frankenstein I was creating as I was going along. I still donít really know how to act around our mental health clients. I donít want to patronize them, yet I donít want to be Suzy Sunshine and freak them out, yet I donít want to act like its US way up here, and THEM way down there, because Lord knows, people can feel that. I always could.

    I also donít know how much to reveal to people. My nickname as a child was Blabbermouth ****. My mother always talked so much, that whenever I got around adults alone, like say when she left the room, I would just start spewing verbally. I would tell people everything about everything. Like for instance, we used to live on a large corner lot and there was this certain lady who walked her dog everyday. Well, as soon as she hit the edge of our property, I was so starved for attention, that I would start talking to her, telling her that my daddy drank and that my mommy yelled alot, and I would walk the entire perimeter of our property, spilling my guts to this total stranger.


    -Future Shrink Patient-


    Iím sure the lady felt sorry for me, because she never purposely avoided me and she would always nod her head and smile and let me pet her dog. But I didnít have any boundaries than, and nor do I now. Right ďAĒ?

    So I guess I have a lot of conflicts going on here. The atmosphere, though extremely supportive, is thick with a constant reminder of my illness. I had gotten to the point, in recent months, where I wished that I knew people who didnít have a ďdiagnosisĒ and take meds. Because except for my art class (and formerly my association with Married Guy and his family), virtually everything I do...my appointments with ďAĒ, his group, and my survivorís support group, has to do with people dealing with mental health issues. And I often wonder how I will ever get better, if Iím always running with the crazies.

    I had tried being friends with people from ďAĒs groups, but every single one of them turned out bad. Some were my fault. Some were theirs. And I really yearn for a friendship with a healthy person. Like hey, maybe their healthiness will rub off on me.

    Married Guyís influence was very, very good on me. I was a massage client of his originally, but then I worked with him professionally, and it was just at the beginning of my disability period and I was really down on myself. And he helped me fight that. He gave me responsibilities. He put me in charge of designing a newspaper. And then with each month, he started giving me more and more responsibilities. At first I was really afraid to make any decisions and the newspaper was really flat looking. But then when he started to show confidence in my abilities, I got increasingly creative and then started to totally kick ass and we got a lot of compliments. We even put out this incredibly sarcastic and hilarious April Fools issue, which nearly got us fired. But we were on such the same wave length humor wise (extreme sarcasm), and I felt so supported, that we just had a blast doing it together. I still have that issue on my computer at home.

    So I guess I just have to wait and see. I am still fairly dreading when I start seeing clients on my own. One of my team members is having surgery and during check-in told of this really terrifically ill person she is dealing with. She talked about her for a good half hour of our two hour meeting. And then she looked over at me and said, ďAnd Iíve told her about you, witty. I think you should take over her case when Iím having my surgery.Ē And Iím like, gulp! I have panic attacks getting on the elevator coming to work. But my boss did step in and say that she would be doing the assigning, which I think was the code word for, donít worry, youíre not ready. At least not yet.



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