Perseverance.

I am totally stuck.

Feet in cement blocks.

Hands tied behind my back.

Stuck.

I have so much I want to say and so much I want to do, but when I try to put myself into action,  my mind goes blank.

All of my rushing thoughts dissipate into nothingness.

I took a short hiatus from my blog, and I find a piece of me is missing. I come back to it, just to see a bank screen, screaming at me to write something. ANYTHING!

I think what I have been really struggling with lately is self-love. This blog has been a tool that allowed me to guide myself into new ideas and gave me the chance to free flow my thoughts out loud.

It’s a place were my thoughts and emotions can run wild. Unfiltered. Unapologetic.

So what happens when you hit a rut?  When you aren’t sure what you feel?

You keep going. You persevere.

And that’s what I’m doing today. screen-shot-2016-11-15-at-10-33-24-am

Last night I had one of the worst panic attacks of my life. It wasn’t a melt-down-crying kind of one, it was the holy-f***-I-think-I’m-dying kind.

I am laying in bed when my heart stops beating–or thats what I thought anyways. Of course that only causes more panic to ensue. I try to take a deep breath but there is such a force pressing down on my chest I can only suck in little gasps of air. I’m thinking…this is it, this is how I’m gong to die! I reached for my wrist to check my pulse. And there it was; the thing that brought be back down to earth. My heartbeat. My wonderful heartbeat. I finally fell asleep last night feeling my heart’s rhythm.

Now fast forward 3 hours.. it’s time to wake up. Anybody that has had a panic attack, knows how mentally and physically exhausting they are. When my alarm went off I wanted to pull the blankets over my head and cry.

But I didn’t. I rolled myself out of bed, dragged myself to the bathroom and showered. I got ready for my day, in pure silence. Even my mind had nothing to say.

On my commute I kept thinking “How am I going to do this today? I have to go work out, then I have classes all day and a test, and so much to do… what can I do to make this work?”
But you know what’s changed from 6 months ago, to today?

Not once did I think  “I can’t do this.”

There is a song by Andy Grammar called Lunatic –Does anyone else find the irony in that?– It is THAT song that gets me going, and keeps me motivated to keep pushing for my goals. The chorus is:

“You can do this, you can do this
You are not a lu-lunatic
Crazy would be changing your mind
You can do this, you can do this
You are not a lu-lunaticCrazy would beleaving it behind”

It popped up in my shuffle this morning  and  I’m 100% serious when I say I legitimately sang OUT LOUD to myself  “I can do this, I can do this.”

I know it can feel silly, but sometimes we just need to motivate ourselves to keep going.

Sometimes it takes your own inner strength and a really good song, to keep your head above the water long enough to remember you know how to swim.

Keep swimming, fishies.

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PS. Go listen to that song. You won’t regret it.

 

Ghosting.

I have been ghosting on this blog pretty hard lately. With everything going on (i.e. school, work, politics, mental health), my blog as taken a back seat. School has mostly been the cause of my disappearance. I have about 4 weeks of school left so suddenly I have a million papers, projects and presentations but not enough time! I do however, have a plan for the next couple weeks on the blog:

  • I have another post queued up and will be published on Saturday!
  • mid-December I will be starting back up 52 weeks of gratitude.
  • Come January I will be back on track posting at least 3 times a week 🙂

Also I need ideas! I finished my 6 week challenge, and officially joined the gym, but I am looking for more activities to try. Spiritual, physical, whatever! I am ready for a new adventure. Let me know if you have an idea 🙂

 

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Thought Flow…

I am so sorry for the two week hiatus!!! I feel like my life has been a whirlwind the past couple of weeks, but I have about 3o minutes of free time and felt like it was time to check in with my blog.

  1. I am still working on my challenge. I have one week to go before final weigh in. I Have lost 13 lbs through the program, and 5 before I started. (Total of 18 so far!) I need to lose another 7 lbs in order to make it to the next round. I KNOW I CAN DO THIS!
  2. This challenge has literally flipped my life around. seriously… when I wake up, when I go to bed…how I work out.. how/when I eat. My whole life has been forced to change in a matter of weeks. I am so so happy that I’m doing  it, but I had no idea how stressful it would be.
  3. Oh! and I had mid-terms last week and the week before that. **Eye roll**

As you can see… I have been a little pre-occupied!!

I’m just going to do a little thought flow here… meaning I’m going to begin typing and just let my heart and fingers figure out what I plan on saying to you guys today; Starting with a little acknowledgment of some ways I have changed in the past few weeks.

I have noticed that in the past 5 weeks, I have been able to handle my emotions a little bit better. Don’t get me wrong, I still had a huge melt down but it was a gateway to a productive conversation with my boyfriend about dealing with BPD/Anxiety and what I need from him when I am having an episode.

Generally I try not to talk about it, and I think a part of me has been in denial. –I actually cannot recall if I ever wrote about this when I was diagnosed back in July, so I apologize if this is all new information for you to digest.– I mean how am I supposed to react when a doctor tells me I have a personality disorder? I think coping with the diagnosis has been my number one struggle. I would like to think that I am perfectly normal and just stressed out sometimes, but then I talk to the doctor –or two, because I wanted a second opinion–and  EVERYTHING they say starts to make sense. It’s horrifying, and also a relief all at the same time.

I am still really not feeling the whole anxiety/depression medicine. I have the pills, but they have been sitting in my dresser for weeks. Pills really scare me; not for any addiction issue or anything like that, but because they are so unpredictable. And I am already so incredibly unpredictable.

How can a doctor tell me to take a pill that could potentially heighten my anxiety/BPD?  I already have an issue controlling my emotions… I know how I feel when I get to a low point… what if the pills take me lower?  What if no one is around when that happens? I am so terrified that I won’t come back from it. —I know, I got real dark, real quick. Let’s just leave that thought alone for now.–

Also talking to people about it?–Psshhh that’s JOKE!. There is already a stigma around mental illness. I HATE when I talk about anxiety and someone just says… “oh yeah I have anxiety when I do XYZ…” No. Just no. Thats anxiousness or nervousness. I understand everyone is different —and who am I to judge–but an anxiety disorder isn’t just…”Oh I don’t want to do something because it makes my tummy uneasy.” Anxiety/panic attacks can be anything from an uneasy stomach, to sweating, stuttering, feeling like your chest is going to cave in, vertigo, tunnel vision, uncontrollable crying, and even feeling like you are literally going to die.

Now let’s throw in something like BPD- or Borderline Personality Disorder. The first thing people hear is ‘personality disorder’—“oh so your crazy?” “So is that like bi-polar? or schizophrenia?” Then they hear the ‘Borderline’ part… “So… only kind of crazy? Are you on the verge of a psychotic breakdown?”

Umm..no.–and yes, when I say that, you can definitely hear the ‘Eff you’ in my tone– Explaining it doesn’t really do me a lot of good either,because the words used the most to describe BPD are ‘unstable and uncontrollable.’–People don’t want to hear that you are unstable. They want to know that you are perfectly predictable and normal and boring!–

Someone with BPD generally shows an instability in moods, they (we) are unable to control our emotions. We can look high functioning to outsiders,–I have a job, I go to school…even my closest friends have never seen me REALLY break down– but the people close to us, know what a shit-show we are. —Sorry, honey!– We are impulsive, have self-destructive tendencies, have an intense fear of abandonment. We either feel nothing, or we feel everything. Or how about the paranoia?--yeah that’s a fun one, feeling like someone is always staring and judging you? GREAT for self-esteem…not.–

And my favorite quirk of BPD… no sense of identity. Who am I, what do I like to do, what am I good at, why am I on this planet? Always, ALWAYS trying to soul search because you can never figure out who you are, or simply you don’t like who you are.

Oh! let’s not even get started on the (theoretical?) ’cause’ of BPD.–please see note below– Trauma, abuse, neglect… all of these are indicators that if someone experienced any of these, they are now exposed to ‘getting’ BPD. -that felt weird wording it that way, like BPD is something you can catch… but I guess thats how I feel;  Like I caught this illness…as if it just snuck up on me one day like a contagious sneeze.

So lets put this in a nutshell:

How I feel when I tell anyone –and I’m pretty sure I’ve only told maybe 3 people– that I was diagnosed with BPD:


Me: I have BPD

Person: What’s that?

Me: Boarderline personality disorder (explains what that means)

Person: Sooo… you are crazy, clingy, unstable and cry a lot because someone beat you? But only borderline? You should get over that.


Now obviously the people that I told clearly would never say that, and probably don’t feel that way, but thats how I feel they look at me. I have never even heard of BPD until they doctors explained it. Also, there is ZERO 100% effective treatment. The best options is a combo between heavy depression medication, and behavioral therapy.

Also another blow to my ego is that now on my medical file it has “MAJOR DEPRESSIVE DISORDER” written across it.

What because BPD isn’t a real diagnosis? WTF.

I am not scared of my diagnosis, I am scared of the rest of the world’s reaction.

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Note: keep in mind, I could be absolutely wrong in any part of this entry, I am just going off of what I have ben told by doctors, and have read, and how I feel.

 

 

52 Weeks of Gratitude: Week fourteen

Week 14: A talent that I have.

I honestly don’t think I have a talent. I’m pretty mediocre in just about everything.

But there is a talent I wish I had! I wish I could play the piano. —and play it well…. obviously. —  The piano is one of the most beautiful sounds to me. I could listen to it all day long. Maybe that will be my next adventure.

…but then I would have to buy a keyboard to practice with.

…Also I think my housemates may hate me.

…But some keyboards have earphone jacks, right!?

I am a romantic soul. I can just picture  it:

screen-shot-2016-10-04-at-12-55-44-pmIt’s an early, rainy, Saturday morning…. I get out of bed and make piping hot coffee that is of course, put into an adorably sassy mug. I slowly  walk my sleepy self
into the living room, and there it is… the center piece of the room: a beautifully black vintage grand piano. I would sit down and begin to play along with the sound of the rain, and slowly the rest of the house would wake up and enjoy a lazy day together.

See, I’m kind of cheesy sometimes.

Of course this little fantasy is set years down the road from now. Number one: I am pretty sure you have to play the piano for a REALLY REALLY long time before you get any good at it.  Number two: I’m a poor college kid and can’t even afford a keyboard at this point. 🙂

Anyways, I am grateful that in the very least, I am mediocre. I could be terrible at everything and that would be a really sad story. Who knows, maybe I will find a little keyboard online and start practicing; or maybe I will keep daydreaming about it. Either way would be fun.

Keep on dreamin’ my friends.

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***The picture in this post is not mine! I found the picture on Pinterest, the original website that owns this picture is Here. 🙂

 

 

 

52 Weeks of Gratitude: Week Thirteen

This weeks topic is: A challenge you’ve overcome.

The biggest challenge I have ever overcome is my depression and anxiety. I have struggled with depression and anxiety since I was in middle school. I wasn’t diagnosed until I was in high school, and didn’t start medication until college.

That meant A LOT of years of trying to figure out what was wrong, thinking I was crazy, and just plain giving up.

Over eating, not eating…over sleeping, not sleeping…cutting, and even a suicide attempt, were all actions of my mind trying function and make its way though a tangled path of darkness.

My lowest point was in college when I turned to smoking weed, and dropped out of school. Weed was the perfect escape for me. I could feel nothing, yet everything at the same time. It allowed my brain to acknowledge there was a problem, but just as it was acknowledging it, the problem drifted away as the next thought approached. Smoking gave my mind and emotions a chance to slow down, and allowed my body to slow down and relax. I stopped cutting because being high gave me a different kind of control; For a little bit anyways.

After a few months of smoking, my anxiety became heightened. Anxiety attacks became panic attacks, and soon I could not emotionally function unless I was high. I hated it but did not know where else to go from there. For two years I was stuck in that rut.

After a turn of events, I ended up moving back to my hometown where pot wasn’t readily available. I went weeks with out smoking, and gained a little clarity on what I was doing to myself. I did not plan on being completely sober, but then a guy (My boyfriend now) told me he didn’t date girls that smoked. I could already feel he was a good guy, and that if I was going to go after him, I needed to be a good woman; That he deserved the best, so that’s what I was going to try and be. So I stopped altogether.

I started working harder at my new job, and got promoted to full time. I started doing online classes at the local community college. –I still didn’t trust myself to walk into a normal classroom with out a panic attack.– I finished 2 semesters online and then made the jump to a classroom. Suddenly options were opening up again. I had a few classes until I got my A.A. then I could transfer back to a 4-year university.

Fast forward to today, right now…. I’m sitting in the Starbucks on campus of a 4-year state college, working on my blog because I finished my homework. –Yes, I know I have other things to do, but hey I’m human!– I am back where I want to be with school, I only have 2 semesters left until I have my first bachelors.  I don’t smoke. I am off medications. I feel like I could take on the world now.

The last thing I am working on that has been affected by my anxiety is my weight. I have already talked about what I am doing Here and Here!

I am so proud of myself for overcoming depression, and I do feel I have actually overcome it. I still have rough days, but I am no longer turning to self-mutilation, or substance abuse to deal. I am keeping my chin and heart held high, and dealing with the speed bumps as they come.

5 years ago if you would have told me I would still be walking this earth today, I would have laughed at you. Now, I not only look forward to my future… I am excited about it.

Life is good.

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Don’t Wish For it; Work For it: Update.

Okay Lady and Gents, I have officially started this challenge. On Sunday I went to another orientation where they explained the meal plan and did our measurements and our first weigh in. So let’s be real about how the challenge works:

You drop about 500 bucks (that’s your motivation!) But you can get your money back if:

You lose 20lbs AND

Obtain a healthy BMI OR Obtain a healthy Body Fat Percentage.

The catch is: If you lose 20lbs during the 6 weeks, but don’t achieve a healthy BMI/BFP you get automatically rolled over into a second challenge (another 6 weeks), where you are expected to loose another 20lbs AND reach a healthy BMI/BFP. As long as you keep losing 20lbs, (but not the other 2) you can keep getting rolled over into another 6 week challenge, and once you lose 20lbs AND healthy BMI/BFP during a challenge, you get your money back. NOW….If you don’t lose 20lbs each round, thats it. You are done, and you don’t get your money back. So you have to go into the challenge understanding these conditions, and also understanding that if you are a heavier person like me, you will probably have to do more than one round to get your money back.

I weigh 176lbs going into this thing. I know after the first round I should weigh a max of 156, and after the second round I should be around 136! I am actually hoping to lose 25lbs per challenge so I can lose a total of 50lbs.

The meal plan is pretty straight forward. The give you a list of all the food you can eat, along with spices and condiments too. The list has 2 sections: Foods that are the best for you, and foods that are good, but not the best.

They also give you a class on supplements and when/why to take certain ones. I actually found it super helpful.

Lastly they give you unlimited access to their gym, and to their coaches. Today was my first day working out, and I have never walked away from a work out smiling and being stoked to come back. Its been about 2 hours since I finished the work out and I am starting to get sore, I know I will be taking a epsom salt bath tonight! But I had fun!! the coaches were goofy and helped me with my form, and high-fived me when I pushed myself. They challenged me, and made me want to try, and told me it was okay to slow down when I had pushed too hard. I have NEVER felt so loved, and un-judged in a gym.

I know I may not be this excited every day, and I’m sure it will get harder, but today… I am proud of myself. And I am happy that I decided to invest in myself.

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52 Weeks Of Gratitude: Week 12

LOOK, LOOK! I am actually posting on a Monday!!!

This weeks topic is: Your favorite personality trait.

I am not sure if it is asking about my favorite personality trait about my self, or just in general…. I will just go with in general…

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I think empathy is an important trait because it allows us to connect to each other in a more vulnerable state. It is likely that someone who is empathetic, is capable of caring about a complete stranger because their heart allows them to feel and understand what that stranger is feeling.

Empathy can be an extremely powerful trait because it allows Empaths to think out side of the box. They aren’t always confined to their own experiences to gain knowledge, but can learn from other people’s experiences as well. I have come to find that Empaths are more openminded, loving, conscious, and mindful of other around them. They are typically good listeners, and good friends.

Fun(ny) Story: Y’all know I am empathetic, I have already talked about it a little bit…

On Saturday I went to an Andy Grammar concert. –-If you don’t know who he is, please look him up. His music is fabulous and uplifting. look up the song Hallelujah or Lunatic both have great beats,  and a great message.– Anyhooo… He sang a new song of his, called “The Good Parts”  and I kid you not… I cried. ..At a concert, I cried.  The song did speak to me on a personal level, but I could also hear it in his voice. And that is what got me. He is someone who put himself out there and worked his way into the industry and he still sings about raw feelings. Real life. Success, failure, love, and what it all means to him.

If you are ever feeling alone in anything, reach out to an empathetic person, they will listen with no judgment and lift the weight of the world off of you.

“I believe Empathy is the most essential quality of civilization.”-Robert Ebert

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Don’t Wish For it; Work For it.

It’s that time again to begin another adventure, and this one is a doozy.

I will still be training for my 5k (That is IN 15 DAYS!), But there is a new adventure I am about to embark on.

Basically it is a bootcamp type program that provides a gym, accountability partner, and meal plan…. but you have to drop some serious dough to start out.

The idea is that you give them $500 Dollars and if you lose 20lbs in 6 weeks, you get your money back.  I don’t know very many details past that, but I will be learning more about it tonight at their orientation.

I think this is a great way to put your money where your mouth is and I’m  sure it will be a great motivational tool!

Is it a little sad that it takes money for me to (hopefully) loose weight, rather than love for my own body and health? Yeah.

I know I have more than 20lbs to lose, but I am really hoping this gives me a good kick in the butt and gets me on my way to a healthier life.

I will post an update after I go to the orientation.

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52 Weeks of Gratitude: Week Eleven

Okay, so clearly my timing is still off. But I promise, I am working on it!!

This weeks topic is: A person who inspires me.

I think a  part of me has been putting this off because I can’t think of a specific person that inspires me. Of course my friends, family, and significant other inspire me, but it’s random strangers, moments and conversations that truly move me.

Some of the most profound influential moments I have had, are when I stumble upon conversations with strangers that go way below the surface.

It is the people that take the time and effort to open up to a stranger and talk about topics that leave them vulnerable to judgment.

It is the conversations where someone is talking about something they are passionate about. Their eyes light up, their voice becomes heightened, they use their hands to bring their points home.

It’s the moment I connect with a stranger on a soulful and spiritual level. And when I say “spiritual” I don’t mean religious.–although that can apply, too.–What I mean is: when our spirits begin to take over; when the consciousness of the world around us has disappeared. When small talk and polite chit-chat becomes standing in some store for an hour  discussing life, love, loss, happiness, and anything in-between.

What’s inspirational to me, is when a stranger has such great passion in something, I catch it like a disease. I want to experience what they are talking about. I want to feel that passion. I want to help their cause, and see them succeed.

Sometimes my deepest conversations are with people I have only known for 20 minutes, and it’s absolutely magical. I walk away thinking about the conversation for hours, days and even weeks. I internalize it.

Monday was my last day at the yoga studio, so I had to train my replacement. It’s only a four hour shift, but this girl and I rattled on so much about life and what it means to us.

I think when you are in that open mindset, it puts off a vibe because soon enough a gentlemen walking out of class stopped to say goodbye, but with in minutes we were talking about mindful living and consciousness. (I plan to write about this conversation soon!)  We acknowledged how rare it is in today’s world, to connect with people and have meaningful conversations, and what we can do to improve quality of life by REALLY connecting with our community.

An hour later we were forced to stop the conversation because the shift had ended, and we all had to move on to the rest of out days. Its been a few days since that exchange, yet it  is still with me. It inspired me to be more mindful of myself, my time, my actions, my words, my connections.  A stranger inspired me to be a better person!

To open yourself up to wisdom, knowledge, love? And face to face, not online. Online is great, but a deep connection face to face is so different. The body language alone sets it apart. Can you imagine living in a world if everyone made at least one connection like that in a day?

The next time you are  out, start a conversation with someone. Let me know how it goes. 🙂

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52 Weeks Of Gratitude: Week 7

Hello!

I know its Tuesday…I’m slacking! I got a new job,  so I have been training while still working my other two jobs. After next week I will officially have only one job!! —and then of course school starts up again in two weeks.

OKAY! … 52 Weeks of Gratitude: Week 7: A friend.

I am going to talk about this friend via two short stories.

Background information: We have been friends for 15 years, so she is more than just a friend to me. She is a sister.

Story one:

I had a day off this last Monday, so rather than netflixing —Yes, it is in fact a verb– alone all day, I decided to call my best friend to see if she wanted to hang out with me. She was doing some stuff around her house so asked if I wanted to come see her instead.

Now… I LOATHE the drive to her house. She lives about an hour away and the only way to get to her is by using three different freeways and a bunch of winding back roads. Oh! And her drive way is so steep that when I try to drive my little 5-speed car on it , my car overheats and shuts off.

Regardless of all this, I decided to shove my anxiety of driving aside, and said “okay!” I am so happy I did. It was such an outstanding day! We went swimming for a little bit, then drove into town —Im not kidding..she lives in this charming little country town– so we could stroll around and enjoy the shops. We found an adorable book store that was a maze of walls filled to the brim with books. At every turn there was another pathway of bookshelves that led to another room with more bookshelves!

After an afternoon of walking she asked me if I wanted to go see her boyfriends parents ranch; I thought… sure why the heck not?! Again, I am so glad I did. It was beautiful. We got to hang out with her guy for a little while. I got to pet the horses and play with the dogs. —I felt like a little girl in a candy shop!—

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Then…. (Story two):

On Wednesday we decided to have a little mini-road trip and drive to Santa Cruz for the day. One of the things I love most about her is that she is always down for an adventure. There have  been times where I have called her and said “Bri… I need the beach. Now. Wanna go?” And she will hop in the car and drive 3 hours with me just to sit on the beach for 2, and then drive back home.

I think the drive to the beach is what I subconsciously need. We spend all three hours talking about our past, present, and future life… The choices we have made that have led us to where we are… Where we want to be. And of course there are the minutes where one of us goes “Okay no talking I like this song!” and then you find two girls belting some Dixie Chicks song at the top of their lungs and cracking up at the goofiness of it all.

Both of us are people who are always going non-stop. For her its living every moment like its her last…Never stopping, and always looking for the next adventure; sometimes a little recklessly. For me..I’m always looking to the future, planning my next step to get to my goals and sometimes I forget to live in the moment.

We actually have matching tattoos. Hers says “you keep me safe” and mine says “you keep me wild.” She reminds me that its okay to just let go sometimes and be a wild child. I remind her that even though living each day like its her last is fun, that she needs to make sure she’s still being safe. —I would like her to be my friend for at least another 15 years!–

When we finally make it to the beach there is some light talking, but that’s our few hours to slow down and soak in the beauty. I think we are drawn to the ocean because it is this alluring, powerful force that is the perfect balance of recklessness and reliability. There is an element of fear when looking at the ocean, yet it has the power to calm your soul at the same time.

I feel like the ocean understands me. It is this captivating energy that looks all put together with it’s steady rhythm of waves but there is so much more to it than that. There is the undercurrent, chaos, darkness but also beauty and light. There is so much the world knows about it, yet there are things that it still hides away, that people have to dive really really deep to find.  —I promise that is the most hippy thing you will read from me….okay probably not!— And I think my friend can relate to that as well.

Needless to say… I am so thankful for this girl. We bicker like sisters and drive each other crazy, but she is my everything. She has outlasted any Boyfriend I have ever had; she has outlasted my own family! She has been there for me 100% through every step forward —and backwards!— in my life.

“A friend is the person who knows the song in your heart, and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.”

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