Friday, April 07, 2006

Friday Odds and Ends

It was quite a scene at our NAMI meeting last night.  A lady showed up at the meeting, and sat in on the support group for those who care for loved ones with mental disorders.  She had evidently agreed to care for her 25 year old niece who suffers from borderline personality disorder.   This lady had no clue.  She evidently thought that a few months with her and she'd have this young gal shaped up and ready to face the world.  At one point she said that she wasn't aware that she'd be sitting in with "them" and gestured towards the room that held the "consumers", or those suffering from a mental illness.  She said that she raised 3 girls without problems, and she didn't know where this girl got it because HER family didn't suffer from mental illness.  After a while it was bedlam.  It almost evolved into a shouting match.  I had to hold my wife back, and there was a mother of a schizophrenic boy who wanted to tear the lady's head off.  This just shows that some people have absolutely no clue.  I talked to the lady after the meeting – she really needs to return.  This group can do her a lot of good, provided we can keep her alive long enough to benefit from it.

Spring in the heartland.  85 degrees yesterday, tornados last night, in the forties today.  How I envy those of you in the more temperate and stable areas.

I felt really good earlier this week.  Kyle called me for fishing advice.  I felt really bad later, it didn't work.  He didn't catch anything.  I'd really like for him to develop this interest, it's something that could provide a refuge for him throughout his life.

That single 25 mg dose of Seroquel taken earlier this week took over a day before the effects were totally gone.  I don't think I'll be wanting to sleep that badly for a while.

Karen and I were talking this week about her mother.  She is living with us now, recovering from a stroke.  She may be with us permanently.  But Karen was telling about some of her mom's behavior when my wife was a girl.  It sounds like she is also bipolar.  Add this to the obvious bipolar that we have on my side of the family (I am bipolar), and it looks like Kyle caught a full double whammy.  This explains a lot…

Friday night, my favorite night of the week.  I always work my second job on Friday nights, but afterwards Karen and the girls and I go to a local restaurant to eat and unwind.  It's a place that has "bar food",  greasy burgers and chili cheese dogs and fried onion rings and fried cheese sandwiches, and it's REALLY good.  They also have 99 cent longnecks and 99 cent margaritas.  Karen and I both have 2 drinks, never more but sometimes less, and eat unhealthy food.  The girls eat their chicken strips and help themselves to "suicides" at the self serve soda machine.  It's the single thing I look forward to more than anything every week.

I just had a birthday, and a good friend gave me a birthday card.  On the cover it shows George W Bush, a serious expression on his face, and he's holding up 3 fingers.   It says "Heard you're getting older.  Just three words to say about it."
You open the card and it says simply….
"Happy Birthday"

Well, another work week comes to a close.  I hope it was a good one for everyone, and that the weekend is relaxing and rejuvenating to all.


Joel said...

One of the DBSA meetings that I attend is open for patients and families. Now and then, we get someone who wants to know "how to control them". Which almost always gets a laugh. "No, you can't control us. You ~cope~ with us."

I can imagine the ruckus this woman caused. And how freaked she would have been to learn that we were almost all patients in the room.

So few family -- especially spouses -- want to take the time to learn about our disease. (I am one of the lucky ones.) More people have caretakers who think that the pills end all. I think this is also the case with many bipolars who don't want to associate with us "out of the closet sickoes".

Sharla said...

Yeah.... like it's some contageous germ we've got or something... and most people are AFRAID to believe that something like our minds are that fragile. My mother has asked me a million questions. My husband is studying to be a pdoc. My sister, well, she doesn't want to know- she's one of those "take those pills and be fine." Ha, ha. Just so you know, sis, I won't ever be "cured", but I can "work with it". Yo.

As for your wife, you lean for what you know, too. Her mom is like you. My husband is like my father. Blah blah blah we've all heard that one before, but I think it's true.... that's how it ends up 'running in the family' in the first place!

Sharla said...

Okay, that was supposed to say "HER" mom is like you. "MY" husband is like "MY" father. I messed up the HTML.

Jon said...

Joel - usually it's my wife that is willing to always think the best about someone, and willing to give them a second chance. She shut the door on this lady. I am one who will unceremoniously dump a person into a box never to gaze in again. But in this case, I invited them back, hoping to "make a difference". My wife always has had better people instincts than me. I'll likely regret asking her back.

Sharla - I joke to my wife about seeing everyone as bipolar. She'll see someone and tell me later "I think he was bipolar". She sees it in everyone.

Cgal said...

I am grateful for your blog and the bevy of info you share. I am afraid I would have reacted like your wife did and usually I am more open. People need to open up and learn instead of control what they know nothing about. Cgal

Jon said...

Thanks for the comments, and for stopping by cgal!

jane said...

Happy belated birthday, Jon. Sounds like you kept a level head while that ignorant lady spoke. Undoubtedly she just isn't educated about mental illness & she'll realize how she may have offended others. I think encouraging her to return was the wise thing to do.
Your Friday nights sound like a total blast & how fun for your girls to have a family night. I can't imagine how their sodas taste, all mixed up. Blech...the things kids can tolerate, lol. Glad Kyle is doing okay too. :)

Maggs said...

Happy Belated Birthday!

XOXO Maggs

DramaPrincess said...

Double whammy... I worry about that too. I'm bipolar and my daughter's father was diagnosed after his death as "probable schizophrenia." He committed suicide. My daughter is nearly 11 and has ADHD, and there have been a few times where she was having major mood swings that seemed to be a rapid cycle to me... but it's infrequent enough that I don't worry about it, yet.

Ophelia said...

Happy Belated Birthday from me, too!

You've an interesting way to write and tell your everyday life. It's nice to read you. (I guess I've already said this to you earlier.)

Jon said...

Thanks, all, for your comments.

Jane, it brings back memories of being a kid, and talking the teenager behind the counter of the Dairy Queen into putting a shot of each flavor of syrup into the slushee. We called them "suicides".

Thanks for the wishes, Maggs.

dramaprincess - I'm so sorry about your daughter, the loss of her father and your significant other had to be traumatic for all of you. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment.

Ophelia - I very much appreciate you taking the time to comment. I do read your blog regularly, but don't often take the time to leave a comment. You have a distinctive, and very expressive writing style.