Monday, November 30, 2009

A pleasant afternoon...


After I wrote my post early this morning, I got dressed in my carefully selected outfit and walked the dog around the field. It was not raining and the wind was not blowing, although it was a little cold, but nothing compared to how it has been. After I had walked the dog, I made a shopping list and hopped on my bike and went to the grocery store where there were hardly any customers, just as I had hoped, and there was only one cash register open with yawning cashier. I got my groceries in the shortest amount of time and found out that if you go that early in the day, you get very good deals, like three loaves of bread for two Euros fresh from the bakery, So I got those to put in the freezer at home. I figured it was my lucky day. I got my milk and porridge and the other groceries and zoomed through the check out stand and loaded up my bike and rode it home in the shortest amount of time, and when I got home and unloaded everything, I still had time for a cup of coffee before I had to leave for creative therapy.

When I got to creative therapy, I sat in the smoker's room with one of my favorite people there and I will be sorry not to see him again after this week. He's a very good artist and a kind and intelligent man who suffers from depressions. Everybody is going in different directions now and we're all saying goodbye to each other this week.

I was just interrupted by a phone call of a friend of mine who is feeling low and needed a bit of cheering up, so I did my best to do that. It did wear me out a bit because she had nothing but bad news and I had nothing but good news, so we were talking at odd ends. I'm too sensitive a person not to be influenced by that and have to shake myself free of it right now and get back on my high road where I was walking so merrily in my color co-ordinated outfit.

I finished my pen and ink drawing, which I filled in with a little brush with colored ink and made another one with multiple petaled flowers and colored those in too. I finished it just on time and took them both home with me. I'm just filling in my time now and doing unimportant things, because there is no time left to start a big project. I would love to do another painting, but I will have to do it at home, because there is no chance right now for me to do it anywhere else. I can get a canvas at Action, they sell them cheap there and maybe I'll go over there tomorrow and have a look and see what's available. I do have a limited amount of paint, so I probably want to get a smaller canvas.

That reminds me of another number of projects I have to do that I'm committed to and I better do those first and I'll tell you about them as I do them. I have to get myself organized and not walk around with my head in the clouds. I must get down to some serious work and produce some things. Sure, and I don't have the least amount of stage fright.

I've been sitting here for 45 minutes thinking about the things I have to do and coming up with ideas and my brain is working overtime. Of course, it's not helping me finish write this post. I've got lots of possible ideas in the meantime and I have to bring them to fruition. I will start with the first thing first and that is to create a work of art and send it on to another artist in an art exchange scheme that I've become involved in. I will start on that immediately today and get that finished as soon as possible or my name is mud. Good, that resolution has been made. I will pick up the super sized envelope I need to send it in tomorrow.

I like decision making. If you take it one step at the time, it is not too bad. You have to break everything down in little chunks of activities and make them manageable and bite sized. And separate one project from the other. Do one, finish it, start on the next. Hey, I may make it far in the world of management.

And now I have to eat and walk my trusty four footer, not necessarily in that order. It depends on if he stays asleep for a while longer. He's had his dinner and is digesting it now. I would like to do the same.

Have a good evening, everyone. Wish me luck on my project. I need inspiration.

Ciao,
Nora

Early in the morning is also good...


I've had a few hours of sleep last night and then I woke up and was all done with that, so I got up and walked into the kitchen, turning the computer on on my way there, and made myself a cup of coffee. The dog decided to be difficult immediately and start whining for things and I got very angry with him and he got the message and went to sleep under the coffee table on his blanket. I was just tired of his behavior and I'm going to keep being this strict, because he's getting out of hand. He's like a darn whiny kid who is a regular pain in the you know what.

I had thought about sweeping and mopping the floors while I was up, but I never did get around to that and answered emails instead, which always takes me a little while, because I want to take my time doing it and think about what I want to write. Not that it is then anything earth shattering, but I do want to put some thought into it. My oldest niece sent me oodles of pictures of her beautiful daughter, so I had to admire those and copy them into the right folder. I think I have more photos of her than I have of anyone else. She has very proud parents.

In my last post I said I had to pick out the clothes I was going to wear today and I did. I'm going to wear black leggings and a blue denim skirt, with a purple long sleeved stretch t-shirt and a black long sleeved top over it, so that the purple t-shirt shows at the top, and a black bolero over that with a black and gray and purple striped scarf. I'll be wearing matching bracelets and my comfortable boots. Isn't that just splendid? I was going to wear my black and white and gray dress at first, but decided against it, as it made me look kind of bulky and I must prevent that at all cost. I'm always glad when my scheming little mind thinks of another good outfit to wear and it works. I used to think I had no fashion sense, until I got a part time job in a clothing store and I had to help people find clothes and look good myself too. That was lost of fun, especially since I got my clothes at a discount. I always kept a close eye on the sales rack and made my move when something good was put on sale. I had a very easy size back then and could fit in all the clothes that were sold there.

I think I will go to the grocery store early this morning before I go to creative therapy. They open at 8 am and there will be hardly any customers there. It really is the best time to shop and it will be better than waiting until this afternoon when I will feel like it less, because I will be tired and it will be busy there. It is a heck of a lot less intimidating to go there when there's hardly anyone there and there was a period a few years ago when I always went shopping first thing in the morning. I think that may have been during a long hypomanic episode, I don't quite remember, but I do know that I got a lot done in that time. I think I was always cleaning and doing the dishes and vacuuming. I should have one of those episodes again soon. It would come in mighty handy. I like it when I have boundless energy and I can take on jobs as if they are the easiest things in the world. That's mighty nice.

I'm so ready not to be serious this week. I feel like all last week I was dealing with serious subjects and kept myself occupied with the inner workings of my mind, and especially my past, and today I feel like doing none of those things and to be carefree and to let things come as they may and I'll see what happens with them. That doesn't mean I'm not going to plan things carefully, but I'm going to do everything to my advantage and not worry about if I'm doing it right or not in other people's eyes. I'm simply not going to care. I hope I remember I said this tomorrow. I'll have to be reminded of it if I get too serious again. I sure hope one of you will do that for me.

So far the dog is behaving very well. I've let him out back for a piddle, but I talked very sternly to him and when I gave him his bone I said very harshly, "Here you go and that is it and no whining!" He has gone back to sleep without a peep out of him. I guess I've been too nice to him lately and he is getting the wrong message. It's my own fault, I have to set the limits. He moves within the boundaries that I set. It's like having a whiny blooper for a kid. You've got to say a loud no at one point and be very serious about it and mean it. Otherwise they don't know what to do with the freedom that you give them.

The coffee tastes especially good this morning. I must have gotten a hold of a good batch. Actually, I just opened a new pack, so it is very fresh. I love the smell of it when I first open a new pack of coffee pads. You just want to dive into it with your whole face and drown in the aroma. I always imagine that I can taste the difference between the new pads and the old pads, but that may just be my imagination or wishful thinking. I love a new cup of coffee so much that I assume all sorts of things about it, depending on where I drink it, but in the Netherlands I've never had a bad cup of coffee. I did in a roadside restaurant in France, that was truly the worst cup of coffee I ever tasted. Hardly anything is worse than looking forward to a cup of coffee and having it be a bad one. I've talked about this subject already haven't I? God, there's nothing worse than repeating yourself and catching yourself doing it.

I've come to the end of this post anyway, because it's time to take my medicines and get the show on the road. I will go out in the world, neatly dressed and ready to face the day and willing to tackle whatever comes my way.

I hope you all have a nice day with lots of good weather. I hope for the same here.

Ciao,
Nora

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Sunday is lovely too...


I'm going to drink lots of coffee, because I need it, as I just woke up from a comatose nap on the sofa and I think I have the seam of the arm cushion imprinted on my face. Actually, I wasn't as comatose as all that, because I had coughing fits every now and then and that bothered the dog and he barked at me every time I did (my gastric band was regurgitating the salami I had eaten earlier). So I suppose you could say that I had a fitful comatose nap, because I was completely out of it in between the fits of coughing.

A few hours passed this way and now I have to stay up until 10 pm at least, so I'll be on a normal schedule and sleep through the night, so I can go to creative therapy in the morning. There will be much temptation to stay in bed, I know it now, and I'll have to convince myself to get dressed and go and overcome my own resistance. I'll find excuses not to go and want to give in to the lure of my warm bed and maybe I'll be in a low mood and I'll have to sleep more. All of these things can happen. I even think that I'll stay home and clean house and go grocery shopping instead, which are things that also need to happen, but I can do those things later in the day, except that it seems harder to do them then and I have lost a lot of my motivation by that time. I've run out of milk and do need to get that and I also need to buy porridge and dog bones.

For some strange reason, it hasn't rained all day, although the wind is blowing as hard as ever, reminding us that it's still Autumn and that we're not out of this low pressure system yet. The sky has been overcast all day and the sun didn't shine once. At least all the puddles in the streets have dried up and the street cleaner came by on Friday and swept up all the dead leaves. Do not very quaintly imagine a man with a broom here and a pushcart. It was all done with a truck with big revolving brushes underneath it. We do not have babushkas with twig brooms sweeping in the streets like they do in Russia. There's not that much romance in it, after all, and all the leaves on the sidewalks are removed with those horrible leaf blowers. That is, when it's not raining. When it rains, I imagine the men play cards or have their days off. Isn't it strange how you never wonder about that? What do they do when it rains?

The dog pretended he wanted to eat, but when I filled his bowl, he turned his nose up at it and went to sleep. Well, there's only so much you can do. You can't say I didn't try. It seems I spend the day trying to figure out all his different demands and it is getting worse the older he gets and I think that's because he is getting a little bit confused and doesn't know himself what he wants. He is a little bit addled and the other day he barked at a tree. I think his sight is going as well as his hearing. He bumps into things sometimes in the living room, although most of the time he navigates his way through alright. It's when he gets in tight spots that he makes misjudgments and clonks into things with his head. The other day he was stuck in the corner of the hallway, right beside the door, waiting for me to open it. I had to redirect him to the right place.

I wonder if and when I'll ever turn into a proper housewife again. I seems that I lose control over the household on a regular basis and then somehow in a short amount of time have to pull it together again, but I never get it as clean as it ought to be. It always gets out of hand and I seem not to be able to just keep up with it. I feel enormous amounts of frustration and I'm happy if I just get the most basic jobs done, such as the laundry and the dishes and changing the bed. The bigger jobs are a challenge and I only do them when I have no other choice and I don't do them well. Even my sense of pride isn't big enough to motivate me to get them done right, because I feel defeated halfway through. I used to be such a good housewife and be real house proud. I can certainly not say that about myself now. I must talk to my SPN about getting help in the household on a regular basis. Someone who will come in and do the big jobs once a week, so that I can do the little jobs in between, which there are enough of. I must clean house well this coming week, because J. is coming next weekend and I want the place to look nice and I want the floors mopped, which badly needs to happen. Oh, how I hate linoleum. I wish I had never gotten it. It's the bane of my life and it's hard to clean. I am just having an anxiety attack now, because I have so much to do.

I must look in my closet and decide what I'm going to wear tomorrow. It needs to be something new and interesting, because I've been wearing the same old thing nearly all week. It must match the green scarf I am wearing, otherwise I have to find a different scarf and I like this one a lot because it's very warm. They'll have to be warm clothes, because it's still cold outside and I will want to wear layers, which is fun. You can make amusing ensembles when you wear layers and scarves. One thing I know is that I'm going to wear my denim skirt. So I must find things to match that. I will be fun to dig into my closet and find the possibilities. The stuff is packed in there so tight, that it's easy to overlook something. And then, of course, everything falls of its hangers, which is a major frustration, and the stuff ends up in the bottom of the closet. I do always forget which clothes I have and it is always a revelation to see what I run into. I have dresses that I hardly wear, because I prefer skirts with pockets and boleros that are cute that I can wear over long sleeved shirts, but those may be too cold. Oh well, I'll see. I'll take some time and really make a study of it. It will be something to look forward to. I'll let you know what I end up with. I have some good ideas already.

I've walked the dog for what I hope is the last time today. It's funny how he can be completely out cold one moment and demanding something unknown to me the next. Usually he settles down alright at night after we've had our last walk and he really settles down when I've gone to bed. There's not a peep out of him after that, usually, I must add.

I'll go look in my closet now and see what I can come up with. Something very exciting hopefully. It must be warm, that's one stipulation. I will not be cold these coming days.

Have a good rest of the day or a good evening, actually.

Oh, those of you in England, don't send any more rain this way.

Ciao,
Nora

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Outside it is raining...


I'll admit right from the start that I'm in a bit of a funk, so this may not become the most cheerful post I've ever written. I've just allowed a wave of memories to wash over me and that was triggered by an email of one of my blogger friends who unwittingly got me thinking about my past and this released a whole slew of images and thoughts and unresolved issues in my mind and a lot of sore feelings and regrets. They are all things that I have to learn to live with and that I normally keep at bay, but every once in a while there is an opening and it all comes bubbling to the top. Well, actually, it's more like a mini eruption and I realize what I walk around with still and how that never will be resolved, unless I go into therapy with my first ex-husband and have about 20 sessions with him in order for me to heal. Well, maybe that's exaggerating it a little bit, but it would be a lot of work, because there is so much sadness and resentment there. Then again, maybe there is so much there, that it would be like a huge destructive force that would destroy everything and maybe it's better if it's left alone and put away forever. Yet I wonder how much it influences my daily life and how it determines the things I do and say. I think maybe it makes a big impact.

Okay, I'm taking a deep breath and allowing myself to come back in the here and now. This is where I am and this is where I function. I have to do that to the best of my ability and make a success of it and not stumble and fumble and fall down too often. I have to remember to stay grounded and to not let the past immobilize me and render me paralyzed with its power over me. I've got a second chance to do it right and to show the world that I do know how to function well and that my head is screwed on straight and that I can take a beating and come up fighting. I was so cast down after the first time, so mortally wounded and so very much near death that I didn't think I was going to survive it. I didn't want to survive it for a long time. I kept on living because doing the opposite is very difficult, selfish as that sounds to people who cling to life. If I don't keep everything at bay, my death wish grows and I give up.

That's why I have to make the effort to come back to the period in time in which I am living now and to stay there and to always live in this moment, like a true Buddhist. To not look back and to not look too far ahead, but to be present now and here this very minute. Me, sitting here behind the computer, while the dog sleeps on his blanket and outside it is dark and it rains. That's where I find my peace. I hear the rain dripping down and I like the sound of it. I hope it will stop in a while, though, because I have to walk the dog one more time and neither one of us likes to go out in the rain.

Actually, it is very cozy in here with the lights on and the darkness outside. It makes me feel like when I was a child and everybody was home and we were gathered in the dining room, sitting around the table each doing various things that kept us occupied. My mother knitting, my father reading and my older sister and I making things with paper and crayons and glue. See, I do have some happy memories.

I've just fed the dog two slices of rye bread with grilled luncheon meat. He likes it very much. I've decided I'm not going to eat it myself anymore. It's too painful an experience for too little food. I'm left hungry and unable to eat more and all I can think about is food. This afternoon I had a bowl of porridge and it was so very satisfying that I'm still full from it. I will only need a glass of fruit juice before I go to bed, probably. When I think about eating a slice of rye bread with luncheon meat, I feel a terrible distaste and I put it off as long as I can, until I feel faint with hunger. I figured that was no good either.

I think it has stopped raining, so I will take out his majesty. He's been begging to go for a while now. In between begging, he falls sound asleep.

Sleep tight, have a good night.

Ciao,
Nora

Actually...


I'm just trying to get to my 600th post as fast as I can, because that would seem like an achievement. I've passed that number already if you also count my posts on Wordpress, but since I'm unable to import those, I've had to start all over again. No matter. It's like beginning to write a new novel. You finish one and start the next and somewhere you leave the evidence that you were there behind you. It's like the different phases in your life that you leave behind you when you're done with them. How many memories of them do you want? I want very few. I only want the answers to whatever questions it turned out I had. Even if that is after the fact. I'm constantly trying to not live in my past, but to only live in the moment and in a very tiny little piece of the future. The only times I live in my past is in my dreams where I symbolically rehash all the things that happened to me in my past lives and come to some sort of a conclusion about what really took place then. I'm like an actress who is learning her lines after the final curtain. Or like Sherlock Holmes who is piecing together the picture after the wicked deed has been done.

I never look at photographs from the past. I have them in a drawer, in a box and in photo albums, but I never look at them. I don't want to be reminded of it. I'm so very set on being me now and not being me then, that I can't be drawn back into a time when everything was different and opposite to however it is now. Nothing in my life is a reflection of what it was like then, I may as well be another woman or have taken on a totally different personage. In a way I have. I have a different name and a different life and a different attitude. Even my psyche is different. It's like I've gone into the witness protection program and have taken on a different identity. I don't even remind me of who I was then.

So anyway, I'm working hard to get to my 600th post and the only way to get there is by writing whenever the muse inspires me, which is at totally odd times of the day and night. When I have no obligations, my 24 hours get divided up whichever way I please, and I sleep when I feel like it and I'm up when I feel like it and I'm active and lucid at the strangest times of the day or night. I feel a freedom that's very liberating and I feel that I have to answer to no one and that I don't have to follow any strict guidelines as to how I divide up and spend my time. I think that's the best part about living alone. You don't have to calculate in that other person's schedule that he is stuck to and probably wants you to stick to also. That's the pitfall of togetherness, it creates that restriction of physical and emotional space that I have a great need for. It would be wonderful if there were another person like me and a house big enough to contain us both. Then it might work.

It's too bad that it takes some people a life time before they get to know themselves well enough to know what they really need and want out of life. It isn't until these past two years that I've really come to know my own mind and my own needs. That's because I never really lived on my own before. I was never a singular unit before. I was always a part of some social system and playing some pre-described role in it that, it turned out, was not well suited for me. I wish I had known all along what an non conformist I really am instead of trying to make myself fit in the picture, whichever one it turned out to be. The problem was that so far I haven't fitted into any sort of socially accepted picture of what a woman ought to fit into. At least not those of the traditional kinds. Not up to now that I'm alone and happier. I liked having children, but was bent under the weight of the responsibility of it all and at one point that became too much, along with the rest of the trappings of middle class life and the resulting unhappinesses.

So, again I'm working towards my 600th post on an early Saturday morning. In a little while I will take out the dog and go to sleep. One must sooner or later. There is no getting around to it. I'm going to fill up the weekend as I see fit and do things the way I want to do them. I want to have complete liberty to behave in a way that I want to. Sometimes you have to walk the line and sometimes you don't. It is interesting that I haven't mentioned the one person who keeps me undeniably tied to my past, and that is my daughter. I can never really cut my ties completely because of her. She is a constant reminder. She is not a constant presence in my life. She lives too far away from me and I can go a whole day without thinking about her too much. But she is always there in the background and prohibits me from forgetting where I came from. Children are mixed blessings.

Alright, the philosophical hour is over. We return to the reality of the day, which is not half bad. After all, I've got a warm bed to look forward to after I brave the cold of the early morning.

Have a good morning you all.

Ciao,
Nora

Friday, November 27, 2009

Wasting no time and dressed warm enough.


Because it's such miserable weather outside, stormy and rainy with gusts of cold wind, I have dressed in a double layer of clothes this morning and I am so pleasantly warm, that I am surprised at myself for not having thought of it sooner, because I was suffering for naught and being very unhappy in the cold and hating every moment of it. Now I am nicely warm, in the apartment too even, although it isn't really cold in here, but it just feels that way. I've got my green scarf wrapped loosely around my neck and am wearing my comfortable boots with my thickest socks and I'm toasty warm. I don't feel a draft around my legs, because I'm wearing two pairs of leggings. It's true, I only imagine I feel a draft and think my knees are getting cold, but the power of suggestion does a lot to a body. I don't even want to imagine that I'm cold, I want to feel that I'm really insulated. I'm wearing a long sleeved stretch t-shirt under my long sleeved top too, so my top half is also warm.

This made a huge difference when I got on my bike this morning, cursing the weather and praying that it wouldn't rain again, and I almost made it to creative therapy without getting wet, but I was warm.

The good thing about waterproof mascara is that you don't look like a raccoon when you arrive at your destination. All these things you have to think about. You could wear a hat, but it will make your hair flat and funny and you will look like a goof ball and no amount of fussing with you hair will set it right. Without a hat, there is a chance that it will get wet and that in combination with your hairspray will also give you a funky effect when you try to rub it dry with a towel. You will look like a punker and that is very hip and modern if you don't mind that look. I personally mind it less than the flat and funny look, which makes me look like a nun without her head cap on.

I always wait for the rain to stop and I say many wishful little prayers and make deals with a higher being. As soon as it stops raining, I rush out on my bike and try to get wherever I'm going before it rains again. Sometimes I make it and sometimes I don't. Sometimes it starts to rain when I'm out walking the dog and he picks that moment to decide he's found a very interesting spot to sniff for a very long time, until it dawns on him that it is raining and that he doesn't like that and we can go home. Needless to say, we´re wet by that time. Luckily, I don´t much mind the smell of wet dog and it disappears when he is dry again.

The gusts of wind make you feel cold through and through and that is really what you have to dress for. It´s more miserable than a cold freezing day without wind.

My sister came and picked up the paintings from creative therapy today. All five of them and it was the first time she saw them. She liked them a lot and told me to sell them for a lot of money. I´ve got them stacked against the wall of my bedroom now and I don´t rightly know what to do with them. I´ll have to ponder on it for a while. I suppose I can hang some of them up on the wall space that I have left, but I don´t have room for all five of them and I really should try to sell them, but I don´t know how yet. I´ll think about that. The problem is, that I´m attached to everything I make and only want them to go to people I like. The other thing is that I like a lot of people and if I knew they got good homes, it would be good advertising for me too. Like the collages. I could send those to people in a tube, if I knew they would get properly framed at their destination. I know one person who has a shop. I need to get in touch with her and see about selling my stuff there. I also want to frame some things for myself to hang up in the living room.

So you see, you create and create, but what do you do with it? That´s the question.

I was tired of lugging cans of dog food home with me, so I went to a pet store on line and ordered dog food there. I figured out what I spend at the store every month and then picked out what I could afford. It will be delivered free of charge in a few days. The dog has a surprise coming to him. He is going on a diet and will be getting smaller portions and more dried food. I will have to be very strict with him and not give in to his sad looking cocker spaniel eyes when he refuses to eat the very good dried food. I got him the best and he has to eat it. It will be a matter of his willpower against mine, except that he can bark when he´s stubborn and wake up the neighbors. He´s got that trick all figured out. He knows if he barks early in the morning, he gets what he wants sooner.

A slice of rye bread is the size of a slice of cake, but then much thinner. I just can´t eat a whole slice of rye bread with luncheon meat on it. The last bite or two are for the dog. I have to pay close attention to the feeling in my little stomach above my gastric band and as soon as it gets the least bit of pressure on it, I have to stop eating. As a matter of fact, I should spit out the bite that I have in my mouth and not even swallow it. That will prevent all discomfort. I have to chew my food very well, really grind it into the smallest possible pieces before I swallow it. That´s why it was so easy to eat the porridge. It just slid down without any problem, but it was very fattening and I put lots of sugar on it. It´s no wonder I gained all that weight. Eating the rye bread is okay. It tastes good, but it is a lot harder than eating the porridge and not nearly as satisfying. But it does make me feel full and that is the main thing. I´m not feeling hungry and I really have to think about if I want to eat again. If I eat too soon, I will be extremely uncomfortable and that is absolutely no fun. I can´t stuff my face, which I suppose is a very good thing.

Shoot, do you see how I jump from one subject to the next? That´s the way my mind works. Never dwell on one thing for too long, get on to the next thing as quickly as possible. Don´t be dull and long winded. Be surprising and amusing.

Well, I´ve been amusing long enough now and I´m going to end this long ramble that´s not going anywhere in particular quickly. At creative therapy, I drew a big circle and filled it with little four leaved flowers done in pen and ink. Now I´m coloring them with a teeny brush and colored ink. It´s monk´s work and it keeps me off the streets.

Ciao,
Nora

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Wasting time...


I went back to bed this morning and slept until 12:15 pm and it was so lovely. Wild horses couldn't have dragged me out of it and the animals slept there with me. That means I wasted half of the day, but who gives a darn, right? It was all for a good cause, because that's what sleep is to me and as a result, I feel fantastic. Like a newborn person. I feel I've been restored to good mental health. It means I only did a few measly jobs in the apartment, but I don´t feel bad about that and the day isn´t over yet. I still can empty the washing machine and hang up the laundry and put away the second load of dishes that I did. There´s time enough and I´m not tied down to a schedule, after all. There is no time clock that I have to punch my card into. I often forget that and think that with the coming of darkness my working hours stop, but there´s no rule that says it does and I can just keep on doing things as I please. How silly of me to think that I´m in a 9 to 5 paid position. I can do all the overtime I want and make up my own schedule. I remember scrubbing the kitchen floor late at night when my kids were babies. I can certainly hang up laundry at 6 pm. I think that´s an excellent idea.

On top of spending little time on the household as yet, the Exfactor came by for two cups of coffee, so I dropped what I was doing and we had a nice leisurely chat. I always do enjoy it when he comes by and he makes for good company. We didn´t have any complicated political or social discussion, but just talked about cows and calves as we say here and that was nice too. Sometimes we´re intellectuals and sometimes we´re just ordinary people. Well, intellectuals are just ordinary people too and I don´t really know how close we come. We may be outclassed by many others. Actually, I´m sure of it. We are just lightweights in the bigger scheme of things, but we do have our opinions and are well versed in them. If there´s one thing I appreciate, it´s a person with an opinion, even if it´s a different one than mine, as long as it´s not a narrow minded, bigoted one.

Oh my goodness, I had one slice of rye bread with three slices of salami and my gastric band is trying to deal with that, That may have been one slice of salami too many. It´s highly uncomfortable as the food is trying to get past he little opening that´s left by the band...there, I just threw ip the excess food and that action forced the rest of the food through the gastric band and now I feel better. What a relief. Sometimes I have to do that, because otherwise I sit here in agony. It feels like I´m going to upchuck everything and I don´t want to do that. Just a little bit is enough. I realize this is not a very appetizing subject, but it must be talked about when you discuss gastric bands and the evil that they do. I will be more careful with my next slice of rye bread. And now for a delicious glass of juice.

Oh, I see that it´s almost time to watch the news. Well, I mustn´t miss that. I´m completely out of the loop as it is. It´s also time to put on warmer clothes. Brrr...

Have a good night!

Ciao,
Nora

Thursday early in the morning.


I was so tired after a, for me, intensive day yesterday, that I went to sleep at 9 pm, even after I had taken a nap on the sofa in the late afternoon and slept through the alarm clock at 6 pm, which is amazing with its incessant beeping. Since it was in the bedroom, it did lower the impact of the sound somewhat, yet normally I can hear it very well, but obviously I was in a coma and oblivious of everything. It was Jesker who woke me up eventually, because he needed to go out and was making very urgent noises right by my ear.

I did manage to make it to creative therapy and worked on my fantasy pen and ink drawing, which really is nothing special at all and I think I am just wasting my time on it and it is going to end up rolled up on top of my closet and never see the light of day again. That's not because I'm down on myself, but because I absolutely don't like what I'm doing and am just filling up my time. I only have one more class to go to on Wednesday next week and that is it.

I did get the proper form to request an intake for the SPC and mailed it to my SPN so she can fill it out and get the ball rolling on that process, It shouldn't take long. Mostly it's a question of formalities, which is good, because I got a letter with an appointment in the mail yesterday from Social Services to talk about my situation and where I stand in the reintegration process. I think that's just a formality too, as I think it's been a year since I was there last. They probably want to make sure I'm still as nuts as ever.

In the afternoon it started to rain again, so I had to wait for it to stop until I could run my errands, because I was not about to get soaked on my bike. Finally, at 2:30, it stopped raining and I took all the books that had to be mailed and went to the little post office first, where the damage to my wallet was not as bad as it could have been, so I heaved a sigh of relief.

Then I did my grocery shopping, in the most economical fashion, and I really took my time and compared prices, because I was buying things I normally don't buy and I was also trying to buy enough groceries to last me for a week. It's fun to buy new items and comparison shop and see how much difference there is in price and the assumed quality of the product, which can never be bad if you shop at a good supermarket. They've got they're reputation at stake, after all. I do buy the store brand if I can.

When I got that done and had filled the bike bags and the shopping bag, I stopped by the tobacco shop for my weekly supply of tobacco and got home just in time before the next shower hit. It's more fun to put the groceries away when you have new items and it is especially fun when you have three animals helping you. They always assume that I've brought home stuff for them and they assume right. I always give them something to eat, even if I already had that in the cupboards, because they don't know the difference. The dog always gets a bone and the cats get fresh kibbles. It's a ritual.

In an effort to eat healthier, and to lose weight, I had decided that I didn't want to live on porridge anymore, although I love the stuff and can eat mountains of it. That's just the problem. I had bought very thin sliced black rye bread and light mayonnaise and three kinds of luncheon meats. I have discovered that I can eat one slice of rye bread with two slices of luncheon meat at the time, and that I can eat another one an hour later. And I am satisfied then. I started off with salami and it was so good. It was the best thing I've tasted in a long time and it was nice to chew my food for a change. I have to chew it well, keeping in mind my gastric band, but all goes well and one slice is just enough. Rye bread is high in vitamin B, iron, zinc, potassium, magnesium, fiber and calcium. So that and drinking low fat milk and multi vitamin fruit juice should keep me in good shape. I have to lose 12 kilos, believe it or not. That's what eating all that porridge did for me. That's 26 pounds. Picture that in your head.

Well, anyway, I'm going back to bed for just a little while to sleeps some more. I think it's too early to be up already. I've taken my medicines and the start of the day can wait for a bit. I've got a better thing to do.

Have a good morning you all.

Ciao,
Nora

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Wednesday in the morning.


Well, I managed to sleep through the night. It wasn't a super long night, but I did it anyway. I went to sleep at 12:30 am and woke up at 6 am. That was after I had fallen asleep on the sofa for a few hours in the evening, which I had promised myself I wouldn't do, but did anyway. The urge to sleep was stronger than the urge to stay awake. Now I am still yawning, but I think a few cups of strong coffee will take care of that.

Yesterday was another blustery, rainy day, although it was not as bad as the day before, and I decided not to go out on my bike at all. That meant I did no grocery shopping and I had to make do with what was in the kitchen cupboards. Luckily, there was enough there to eat and there even was enough dog and cat food, so we managed fine, but today I really have to go to the grocery store, otherwise we will be eating dry vermicelli.

I cleaned up that cubicle in the bookcase I had talked about earlier to make room for the latest mooched books. There was a big stack of paperwork lying there that I had to sort through and decide about what to keep and file away in a folder and what to toss out. So I did that and found some interesting bits of paper that I filed away that I had forgotten about. Now I know I've got them and where they are. I think the covenant of my divorce is very important, for example. I knew it was there, but I had never put it in a proper place. A lot of that stuff could be tossed out, though, as it was obsolete, meaning it was interesting a year ago, but not now. I put the books in the cubicle and they nearly filled it up, so soon I will have to reorganize another one, because I have 15 more books coming. Oh, but it's nothing but fun and all for a good cause.

Then I did a week's worth of dishes. Yes really, I didn't have a clean teaspoon left over, nor a clean coffee cup. I do let that go, you know? I keep stacking them up, until I realize they need to be washed and then I put them all in the sink to soak in hot sudsy water, but the plug of the sink doesn't fit well and very slowly the water leaks out, until I am left with an empty sink full of dishes. Then I think, "Oh, the heck with it!" and I put it off until the next day, except that everything seems so chaotic and I get discouraged from looking at them and another day gets wasted. I feel ten feet tall when I get them done and you would think I had washed enough dishes for an orphanage, when in reality it amounts to hardly anything. That's why I think I need a dishwasher. All those who agree raise their hand.

I'm trying to get some things better organized in the apartment, like the chest of drawers in the living room in which everything gets shoved that doesn't have a home. I need to go through them again and toss things out, and doesn't everybody have a junk drawer that is an absolute mystery to them as to what exactly the contents are? I know I have candles and mousetraps in mine, amongst other things and god only knows what else and I think I'm going to keep it that way and never really clean it up. I would just have to start another junk drawer with all the junk I'd find. Well, I'm not planning on moving any time soon, so I don't have to worry about boxing up my junk and having to find a new space for it.

Now I have to get the show on the road. It's time to get dressed and walk the dog. I have to go to creative therapy. I mustn't miss it. I have a busy day ahead of me. I'm not sure how much I like that. It's the riding my bike part that I don't like. Not in this weather.

Have a good day.

Ciao,
Nora

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

What's wrong with me anyway?


Here I am sitting behind the computer in the middle of the night as if I haven't got a care in the world and I have an appointment with my SPN in the morning that I just remembered about. So, I just took my medication and hope I get sleepy within the next hour, so that I will go to bed and sleep for a couple of hours. Really, I can be so foolhardy. I had visions of myself sleeping late and getting up all leisurely and sitting around in my bathrobe forever, or as long as the dog would let me, but no, it is not going to happen. I am so wide awake, though, because I slept on the sofa for a couple of hours in the evening and got over my worst need to sleep. I will come to regret this as I sit here in the morning with a very strong cup of coffee trying to wake up. It will be like going on a long journey ill prepared. And the weather will be bad.

It is completely quiet outside now and has been for a couple of hours. There is no wind and no rain, but on the weather forecast they promised more of the same for tomorrow and the rest of the week. It is just going to be bad weather. I think it stinks, because I have to go everywhere on my bike and it is so awful. I really, really dislike it. But then I have to remember that if this is the worst I have to complain about, life can't be all that bad and this too shall pass. Besides, I will find something else to bitch about when the weather is normal again. There's a always something, right?

When I wrote my last post, and I thought I wasn't quite coherent, I was actually a little hypoglycemic and a big bowl of chicken soup took care of that. I felt much better after that. I do have a tendency to forget to eat on time and to live on coffee and cigarettes. I ignore my hunger pangs and get so busy doing other things, that I don't realize that I need to eat. I get to the point that it seems like too much work to fix something to eat and I know I'm not thinking rationally then and have to force myself to do it and take the time to eat. I don't have snack foods lying around, so I can't just grab something. I really need to fix myself something to eat. If I had snack foods lying around, there would be too much temptation to eat them all in a short amount of time and have nothing left for when I really needed them. I've tried that experiment and failed at it, because I like those sort of things too much. It's better if I have none of them in the kitchen cabinets and have to prepare my food, so that I can't impulsively eat. The drawback is that I then forget to eat, or don't make time for it.

Eating soup is something I started to do just recently, I like the taste of it and it fills me well. I am satisfied for a long time afterwards. It's nutritious, yet relatively low in calories and I make enough for one big portion. I nuke it in the microwave and add vermicelli and soup vegetables for substance. It's a good meal.

I don't feel my sleeping pill working yet, but it ought to any minute now. I should start longing for my bed pretty soon. It will be nice to lie down and pull the duvet over me and get some shut eye for however long it lasts. I think I will send my SPN an email and cancel the appointment. It is only for a half an hour anyway and then at least I will be able to sleep long enough. I just can't face getting up after only a few hours of sleep. I will be incredibly grumpy and discontent. It will be like being dysphoric and having to go out on my bike in very bad weather on top of that. Besides that, the Exfactor is supposed to be here sometime in the morning and I don't want to miss him. He may be able to help me with some of the groceries. I also have to go to the tobacco shop and the post office to mail the books for this month. I'm mailing seven books to England and France.

Okay, I will end this now and email my SPN and then go to bed. I wish those of you who are also going to bed a good night and those of you who will read this upon rising a good morning.

Ciao,
Nora

Monday, November 23, 2009

Stormy Weather...


We're having a lot of wind with gusts of up to 90 km per hour and big old rain showers that you don't want to be caught out in. Of course, I had to go out in it this afternoon, on my bike. I had an appointment at the SPC, which is a place where you can do all sorts of interesting things if you are a psychiatric patient and you need a place where you can find an outlet for your talents. It's in an old building right on the main square downtown where one of the basilicas is and where there are a lot of caf├ęs. It's about a twenty minute bike ride away from here.

When I went there, I rode my bike into the wind and sometimes had a hard time getting ahead and at other times almost got blown sideways. The storm came from the south west and it was mighty strong. It stayed dry pretty much when I went over there, but on the way home, when I had the wind in my back, it started to rain and I came home drenched. I peeled my clothes off in the bathroom and dried my hair with a towel, resulting in sticking up hair, which is an interesting hairdo too.

The dog hadn't heard me come home and was sound asleep on his pillow next to Gandhi, who was taking up half of it. I was home fifteen minutes before he realized I was here and he very sleepily came to greet me. I couldn't take him out, because of the weather, and he had to go, so I let him out back where he quickly did a little piddle before he very hastily came back in again. He doesn't like rain and will avoid going out in it at all cost. If we are out in the rain, he walks very close to the houses, right beside the walls, so he will not get wet, or so he thinks. I waited for it to really stop raining and then took him out for a quick walk, but it started to rain again before we even got home. Well, it's Autumn, what do you do? You pray to the weather gods!

The SPC is going to be alright for me. I have to have an intake, which is a formality, and then I should be able to go two full days a week, which is nice, because it means that I will be busy all day and will be plenty tired when I get home. I'm looking forward to it, although it does mean a longer bike ride as opposed to the 5 minutes it takes me to get to creative therapy now. That will be my sacrifice I have to make. After going there in today's weather, I think I can manage anything,

This is not a very coherent post, is it? I am tired and hungry. I need to have something to eat and I have to just put on my pajamas and relax for a bit.

I wish you all a good evening and I hope you have good weather, not like ours here.

Ciao,
Nora

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Just a minute...


I can't get enough of writing posts, while I really should be doing other things that I did not get around to yesterday, because I took a nap on the sofa instead. Woe is me. At this rate I see a dire future for me up ahead. I also have to wash my hair, which is sticky with wax and hairspray and which I can't do a thing with right now, except look like a wild woman. Like a baboon, I wanted to say, but now I'm not sure what a baboon looks like. I would have to Google that and I'm not in the mood for it. Initially, I didn't have any wax or hairspray in my hair, but then some of it started to stick up and I decided to go with the theme and have the rest stick up as well. It looks quite wild and in the morning I rub it with a damp washcloth and then arrange it with my fingers into something resembling a hairdo. If it looks at all attractive from the front, I am happy and go out into the world with it.

I just took the dog for a walk and it is just a little bit cold out there, meaning it is not as pleasant as it has been these past few days. There's a cold wind blowing and there are rainclouds in the sky and it has already rained early this morning. We're expecting showers the rest of the day and I see no sense for them whatsoever, because nothing is growing now, and it seems like a complete waste of water. Oh, I suppose in the Alps snow will fall and that will be good for the ski resorts and then 5 million Dutch people will go to the snow and get stuck in traffic jams in the tunnels leading through the mountains. I'm exaggerating, of course, but it is a problem every year.

I've never skied in my whole life. On the one occasion that I was supposed to, I fell down the stairs and nearly broke my toe. It turned black and blue and I had to sit with my foot in a bucket of ice while the other people skied. I think it was just not meant to be and I probably would have broken my leg or something like that. That toe saved me from worse injury, that's the way I look at it. It was fate that kept me from skiing.

I'm a strong believer in fate and in how it determines your life's course. That doesn't mean that I think you are helpless and that you can't make choices along the way, because you can, but after you make those choices it is fate again that determines what happens to you. So you can make very bad choices and have fate turn out not to be so good, until you consciously change course and have fate change course with you and make your life look different. Circumstances force you to make a choice and fate determines what happens to you after you've made that choice and you may not like that, until you are wise enough to make better choices. Sometimes you make no choice at all and fate does its work all on its own and you are given a set of circumstances that you are only remotely responsible for, if at all. You must accept what has been dealt to you and somehow see the sense of it, even though it may be very difficult. Life is not a series of hit and run accidents. There is a higher purpose to it that leads us to a place of greater understanding, until we are done taking it all in or until we are saved from some greater suffering.

That's why we have to try and find peace with ourselves every day and not worry so much about the little details, but instead look at the greater picture. If you can find tranquility in your mind every day, then you have achieved a lot, in spite of the fact that not everything in your life is perfect. You must, every day, try to find that area of serenity within yourself that is of silence and peaceful solitude, where you are happy and at ease, regardless of what happens around you. You have to be your own calm oasis and refuge, where you are safe and sheltered and where your thoughts are tranquil and happy. If you can reach this state of mind, you will realize that there is a lot not to worry about.

I am not claiming that I achieve this on a daily basis, but it is always what I strive for and a state of mind that I very often reach, even if it is only for a few hours a day. I am lucky enough to know what the feeling is like, now I just have to remember it when it forsakes me and I am in despair. I takes a few days to come back to the center and focus again and find my point of inner peace. I think that's why I like my solitude so much. It is easier to reach that peaceful state of mind when there are no distractions. When it is just me existing in my own space. Peacefulness and serenity are very valuable possessions, yet as fleeting as the air we breathe. As desert sand that slips through our fingers. That's why they need to be treasured and guarded carefully. You don't treat them with disregard.

That was my treatise on that subject, although I started out with something completely different. I think I share this to explain myself, but also to release ideas that I think may be helpful. It's clear, of course, that I'm a Buddhist, though not a learned one. Most of my ideas are instinctive and rest only on a little bit of knowledge that I gained from what I read.

I hope you all have a good Sunday. I should be hearing church bells, but I was so caught up in writing this, that the sound has escaped me.

Ciao,
Nora

Where I'm not going...


I'm sitting here with a lousy cup of decaf, because it's obviously too late to drink a cup of the real stuff. The decaf is so bad, that I only drink it with the greatest amount of distaste and not at all for my pleasure, but I doubled up on the pads and made the coffee in a relatively small mug, so it doesn't taste too bad. You have to develop all sorts of tricks to make the unpalatable palatable, because it seems that manufacturers are unable to make good decaf coffee pads. Why this is, I don't know, but I think somebody is getting away with murder and letting us pay for an inferior product and I think we ought not to take it lying down and boycott it. Actually, I already am and haven't bought any decaf pads in a long time. These I've had forever, because neither the Exfactor nor I want to drink that coffee and always opt for the real kind that's so much better. This decaf is like drinking an extract made from burned rubber bands and I don't know why I bother, except it's the closest thing to drinking coffee except for the real coffee itself. Well, I do make sacrifices when it comes to getting my fix at night and I wasn't in the mood for a cup of tea. I wanted something like a cappuccino and that is what the Senseo machine gives me. I wanted the creamy foam on my top lip and that is what I got.

Jesker managed to get his three walks in today anyway, he just staggered them at different times and I swear that dog knows how to count, because he didn't get his first walk until way after noontime. I thought he would just need another one at 6 pm, but no, he wanted to go out a 4 pm and then again at 8pm, so he is wise enough to figure out how to get all his walks of the day anyway. He was so proudly walking on the leash as if he had just invented the wheel and was making a triumphal march around the neighborhood with me in attendance with the baggies in my pocket. Sometimes I wonder who is leading who over the sidewalks. I think I play a very secondary role. I'm the poop picker upper. I always bless him when they are of a solid quality.

When we came back, Gandhi escaped in the stairwell again, so I left the door ajar, so she would be able to get back in when she was ready. I forgot about it being open until an hour later and went to check on it and found it wide open and Gandhi sound asleep on my bed. Then I went to see if maybe Toby had escaped in the meantime, but I found him in the kitchen sitting by the faucet waiting for water to come out of it. He thinks if he stares at it long enough, it will magically happen. It is nice that there is an extra outside door, though, so I don't have to worry about keeping my front door ajar. The other people in the building know that the cats belong to me, so there's no confusion about that. They ring my doorbell if they think one of them is about to escape outside. It is no big deal if they do, because they just walk around the block and come in through the back door again.

I am looking forward to going to bed and sleeping late again like I did this morning. I may get up early for awhile, but I will go back to bed again until I'm really ready to face the day properly and quite rested. That is the nice thing about the weekend, that you feel free to do that, as you think that nobody will come to the door to bother you, especially on Sundays. I suppose it is good to have one day of complete rest. I'm very lucky that Jesker is satisfied with a quick piddle out back in the morning and doesn't really have to be walked until later, when I can be bothered to get up and get dressed. The book of short stories by Alice Adams I'm reading in bed is very good and I'm looking forward to reading the novels that I have of her. She can describe her characters in a few short sentences and you can picture them in front of you completely. They are all unconventional and yet probably people you'd meet in the street every day. I don't know anything about her and must do a Google search on her. I don't even remember how I got her name, but I must have read a novel or short story by her at one time. I wrote down all the women authors that I liked a long time ago and I think she was one of them. That was in a period of my life when I read 6 books a week. I read every waking moment just about and hardly spent time behind the computer.

I just Googled Alice Adams and found out that she died 10 years ago and that she used to live in San Francisco, so I missed my chance at meeting her, had I known about her way back then. The last time I was in San Francisco was in 1994.

Well, it's time for me to put my pajamas on and get something to eat and take my medicines. It's been a pleasure as usual. It will be nice to go to sleep and I hope you're all looking forward to it as much as I am.

Have a good night.

Ciao,
Nora

Saturday, November 21, 2009

A lovely Saturday afternoon.


Why is it so lovely? I don't know, just for the heck of it. Because I feel in a good mood and there's nothing standing in my way to feel anything differently. I got up early this morning, but after a while I realized that I really wasn't done sleeping yet, and after taking my medicines and eating breakfast, I went back to bed and slept until noon, when I really was ready to get up and I felt great. I had briefly opened my eyes an hour earlier, but I knew it wasn't time to face the day yet, because I still felt discombobulated and not at all put together properly and in my right mind. Isn't it an amazing thing what the proper amount of sleep does to you and for you? I feel sorry for people whose lives are dictated by the alarm clock, because they must never get the right amount of sleep, unless they go to bed real early at night, and even then they are shook out of their sleep by that incessant beeping at whatever time they've got the alarm set and it can't be a welcome sound. No wonder there are slumber buttons. You get used to the idea slowly that you have to get up. I must remember to set mine for four minutes intervals so I can get used to the idea of getting up myself. Why does it take me so long to catch on to modern technology? It's not a new invention, after all. I do walk behind the times.

I just got four more mooched books in the mail and now I really do have to clear that cubicle in the bookcase that I still haven't gotten around to, because I have nine books in need of shelf space. I procrastinate so much, because I don't have a clear picture in my head of doing the actual job, or imagine that it is going to be too frustrating and avoid it, when really it is going to be fairly easy and I just assume that I'm going to run into all sorts of frustrations. That shows you how low my level for stress is, I avoid the least minimal amount, yet always, when I get around to doing the actual job, I am quite competent at it an do it well and efficiently. I seem to not learn well from my experiences and only remember the frustration beforehand. I'm actually a quite competent person and can be trusted with all sorts of work and do a good job of it, because I'm very thorough and I have my mind set on only one thing and that is to do it well. I am a perfectionist.

Right, I'm not going to avoid clearing out that cubicle anymore. I will do it this afternoon. I'll just think of how nice the books will look once I have cleared everything up.

I also called the other Internet company that I had canceled at the beginning of the year and that still insisted on taking money from my bank account, even though I thought it had all been cleared up and they had just given me a refund for overpayment. After getting transferred from one person to the next, and repeating my story over and over again, I think I finally got it straightened out, but I won't know for sure until I see my next statement on line. Then I'll have to retrieve the money again and we'll have to start all over again. Apparently the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing. I find help desks especially unhelpful and you have to pay for the call too, while you are held waiting until someone is free to 'help' you. This is my second experience this year with changing service companies that's ended up costing me money, when it should have been easy as pie. I'll never change companies again. Tempting though it is to go with a cheaper one.

Argh! Wrong subject to blog about! I need to blog about less frustrating things like church bells that are chiming right now for whatever kind of mass is being served. That makes me think of bread and wine and food in general and how I've not had garlic bread in a long time and how much I like it and how it really is time that I eat something like that again. I must call the clinic about my gastric band next week. I will have to make a note of it in my diary, otherwise I will forget to call. I wonder how many people they get who want to get their gastric band deflated so they can eat normal food again. It wouldn't surprise me if it were many. When it comes to eating food, I've never been so frustrated in my life.

I'm not picking good subjects to blog about. I will tell you that I also still need to do the dishes and vacuum the living room. I'm not much in the mood for the latter and it's getting kind of late in the afternoon to do it and do the other jobs. Doing the dishes will be nice, because it involves playing with hot sudsy water. I so prefer it to vacuuming. I also hate to upset the animals with the noise of it, although Jesker acts like it doesn't bother him in the least, but then he's half deaf.

The Exfactor was here yesterday afternoon and I was able to discuss my latests affairs with him and he gave me a lot of good feedback. It's nice when your own ex understands you and your situation and is rooting for you and helps you think things through until you come to a satisfying conclusion. He's been here three times this week and really helped me out and saw me through this whole situation and watched me go through the whole thinking process, without pushing me into one direction or another, but he was glad when I finally came to a conclusion and started to make sense and discussed that with him. He has known J. as long as I have and knows him well and has a high opinion of him. So he is satisfied with my decision to keep seeing him. J. and I will discuss our relationship face to face soon.

I've just walked the dog again. I don't know why he wanted to go out, it wasn't even his time to, but maybe he was bored and wanted a little outing. He didn't do anything special such as mark a lot of territory, so I think it was just a walk for his pleasure.

In the meantime, I've gotten awfully hungry, no doubt thinking about that garlic bread, and I will fix myself something to eat first. Then I will tackle those jobs. If I don't fall asleep on the sofa.

Have a good day.

Ciao,
Nora

Friday, November 20, 2009

Taking it easy...


I feel just like my dog who is laying here on the floor beside me, completely relaxed and totally at ease. Partly that´s because I just took a Temazepam and I had to, because I was sound asleep on the sofa when both the dog and the alarm clock woke me up and that is a horrible way to wake up when you´re not ready to and I was an instant grump with evil thoughts. I had to take my medication and walk the dog before I even had a cup of coffee or a cigarette and in a stupor I put my jacket on and took the dog out. I thought unkind things while he piddled on every leaf of grass and was glad to be home again. Now I´ve come to my senses after I´ve had one cup of coffee and have the Temazepam work and I know that the dog is settled down for the evening and I don´t have to go out again. But boy, it was touch and go there for a while. Disaster was warded off just in time.

I always write these things half seriously, I hope you realize that. I dramatize everything just a little bit for the effect. Part of me feels the way I described, but another part of me is still in control and won´t let anything bad happen. It´s not like I am a mad, rampaging woman who has lost all control. I´d just like you to believe that I am, because a little part of me is and sometimes just for a while, that little part gets the upper hand before I´ve got her under control again. It´s my excuse for blatant failure. For when I do things that are so stupid, that they even surprise and embarrass me.

Well, I am a writer and I try to get the most out of my words. They all have to have meaning and none of them should go to waste. If I have to dramatize just a little bit to make things more lively and interesting, I will, and I will exaggerate my feelings and the effect they have on me to clearly get my point across. I must get through to you how complicated and disturbing my life sometimes gets and I can only do that by speaking strong language and using embellished words. I will never just simply state something, but always announce it with style and great importance.

When I say, that in a dysphoric mood, I´m an evil witch and capable of rebuilding the living room and hurting people´s feelings something awful, I´m only half joking, because I´ve done all of those things. Therefor, I´m highly suspicious of any dysphoric mood I find myself in and I know I can do great damage if I´m not careful and you don´t want to be at the receiving end of my ire when I am in such a mood. I am like the most wicked person you would not want to meet and I can be very ruthless and hurtful to the kindest people, because I will find something spiteful about them and ridicule them and topple them over with my sarcasm and anger. When I recognize that I am, I immediately call someone for help, but the thing to do is to take a strong tranquilizer and go to bed and sleep.

I am only exaggerating a little bit here and dramatize the facts just a little bit to let you know the impact of my unkindness. It is such a contradiction to how I usually am, that it is a quite surprising and shocking thing to have happen. Luckily, it doesn´t happen very often and only when I´m very unstable. When my mood fluctuates up and down a lot.

Then, of course, I have my manic moods, when I see everything in the brightest Kodak Technicolors and completely sharp edged. I exaggerate everything I describe then, because nothing I can say seems adequate enough to describe the experience. It´s a time of grand gestures and grand words. Of highfalutin language and the most poetic sentences.

Unfortunately, I seldom get really manic anymore. The real highs and lows seem to have left me and I now only have dips and bumps. I think that is because my life is relatively settled down now compared to how it used to be, although it may not look that way to you, who are an outsider looking in. I used to live in extremes and describe my life in extremes. No language was good enough really to express what I wanted to. The events themselves carried a lot of weight and excitement and I hardly needed to embellish.

Nowadays, when my life is often just such a dull roar, I need to make it sound as interesting as I can. I can take some drama and make it sound like a big drama, which to me it really is, but not to the outside world, maybe. I have a tendency to tragedize events to make them sound more painful and hurtful than they maybe really would be to other people, while I suffer under them as if I am carrying a cross. That must be part of my personality. I must be an actress beside being a writer. It has always been my secret ambition.

Well, so much for analyzing that. I´m going to get my pajamas on and get ready for bed. First I´ll watch some dumb television and eat something.

Have a good evening.

Ciao.
Nora

Barely any time...


I don't have much time to write this post, because it is my intention to go to creative therapy this morning and I don't want to be too late. I'll just rattle through this as quickly as I can and drink my coffee and smoke my cigarettes at the same time. It should be easy, I do it all the time.

I finished my book, The Reading Group, and it had a predictable happy ending, which is okay if you're in the mood for that. It was all a little bit too easy, I thought, but it was a pleasant read before going to sleep at night and on those occasions I read it on the sofa before taking a nap. It was a good book before falling asleep. I have now started on a book with short stories by Alice Adams and finished the first one. It was good. The book is called Return Trips. Both these books were mooched and neither one of them were originally on my wish list, but as I expanded it, they got to be on there. My wish list is long. I look for authors I like and see what books are available and try to mooch them. They stay on my wish list until I'm successful.

I slept well. Not as long as I would have liked too, but long enough, I guess. I also slept on the sofa in the evening. I have the ringer on the telephone turned down low so that if I'm asleep, it doesn't wake me up, because there's nothing worse than being woken up by the telephone. I figure, whoever tries to call me can call back. Nothing can really be that urgent that I have to wake up for it and then there's always my mobile phone if I really need to be reached, but it is in my purse and I may not even hear it. I may in fact be incommunicado. What a wonderful idea.

My mood is better. I haven't gone tumbling down again, but I must add that I take regular naps. I have made a decision, but I don't have the time to blog about that now and will leave it for another time, but since I have made that decision, I feel like a weight has fallen of my shoulders. I take the Temazepam when I need to and it helps, but I don't need to take it often and I'm going to try to do without today. We'll see if I can make that, even though it may turn into a hectic day.

I actually feel pretty good now and am not as down in the dumps as I have been in the morning lately. I look forward to the day with a healthy amount of excitement. I see this as a good sign and I hope I can hang on to that mood for the rest of the day, but if I can't, I know what to do. It is solvable.

It's good not to see everything in a black light anymore, but to be able to look at things more optimistically and with a certain amount of confidence. I have the feeling that I'm on the right track and that I can look into the future and catch a glimpse of how things are going to be and I think they are going to be alright and that gives me courage.

According to this weather forecast thingy I have on my computer, it is going to be 16C today, that's 61F, can you believe it for November? I hardly know which clothes to put on. I better try it with layers, because in the morning it is still cold. At least we're not expecting any rain, thank goodness. That's the worst stuff when you have to go out on your bike. At the rate I'm saving money now, I will be a very old lady before I can afford a car and stay dry.

Well, unfortunately I have to get the show on the road. Duty calls. The animals and those sort of things.

Have a nice day.

Ciao,
Nora

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Bouncing back...


I seem not to be bouncing back as well as I initially thought I was. I thought I could get through the hurt quickly and leave it behind me and move on. Instead, I find myself rapid cycling and I have to go to bed when it strikes and go to sleep until it passes and when I get up hours later it usually has. The problem is that it happens again after I've been up for awhile and I have to repeat the process all over again. I have just gotten up and hope that I can finish this post now and maybe be spared another round of it.

The days all look alike and I am not doing anything out of the ordinary. I have not been to creative therapy all week, causing phone calls from concerned therapists and promises that I will show up. Usually, in the morning, I am too defeated to go and I go back to bed and sleep some more, an hour or three anyway. I also sleep in the afternoon and in the evening and then at night, of course.

The Exfactor has been by twice this week to check on me, which I really appreciate. Yesterday he did the groceries for me, thank goodness. I would not have been able to do them myself. He's been a good friend without taking advantage of the situation.

It's funny how your moods have a mind of their own and there's nothing much you can do about them. You can't tell yourself to get over them and to keep a stiff upper lip and to not give into them. They come as they like, just like a storm does, and you can do nothing to stop them except to go to sleep. When you're in a mood like that, you can be very destructive and ruin many good relationships, because you're so aggressive and angry. You also feel like breaking up the furniture and throwing with things, so you can see why going to sleep is such a better alternative. You feel most unkind and want to take that out on people who are just innocent bystanders and have done nothing to deserve your anger. Manic dysphoria that's called and it isn't pretty.

I have just talked to my psychiatrist and was able to get my story across in the least amount of words and he is sending a prescription for 10 mg Temazepam to the pharmacy so I can take those during the day and sleep when I need to. All I had to mention was rapid cycling and manic dysphoria and he knew what I was talking about. It's nice if you can use the right terminology. It gets the message across better and clearer. I feel better for having talked to him, so he knows what's going on with me. You do get a tendency to feel awfully alone when your psychiatric symptoms rear their ugly head.

I just walked the dog. The sky is blue and the sun is shining, but there's a cold wind blowing and it's 10C outside. That's not all that cold, 50F, but the wind makes it feel colder. It's actually nice weather for the time of year. We could have been having snow flurries now. Thank goodness we're spared those. It's supposed to get up to 14C today and tomorrow it's even supposed to get as warm as 16C. The weather is confused and I have that tree growing in a pot that's still putting out little leaves. It's in the sunshine nearly all day and must think it's supposed to do this now. I have another teeny tree growing in another pot, but it's not doing much. I think it needs a little bit of encouragement. It's not getting enough sun and I will transplant it to a pot in the sun with more soil in it.

Right, add that to all the other little chores I have left to do and am not getting around to right now. I will one of these days. The timing is just not right now. Not when I spend so much time sleeping. I hardly get around to reading blog posts, I must try and get caught up on those. I've gotten five books this past week and still have not made room for them on the bookcase, so I must try and do that today. "Try" is the operational word here. I don't make myself any promises and I don't set any deadlines.

I've watered the plants, but two of them dropped a lot of their little leaves, I think I may have waited to long and then over watered them. The fig plant is indestructible as ever and so is the prayer plant. The plants on the kitchen windowsill are doing fine, they get filtered sunlight and seem happiest. I have to transplant one of them to a bigger pot with better soil, but that is another one of those chores that I'm not getting around to, having no deadlines.

I didn't wear my glasses for a day for the sake of vanity and the next day I had very sore eyes. So, that was a very clear and short lived experiment. It's good to have the cause and effect clear immediately. There was no doubt about it. Now I'm wearing my glasses again dutifully and my eyes aren't bothering me. I especially need them when I sit behind the computer. And to think I couldn't with the other pair, because they weren't cut right. It's a blessing that I lost those.

Well, that's all the exciting news I had to share for today and I'm still in a good mood. Thank God for little favors. Maybe it will hang on for a while.

Have a good day, count your blessing, as I count mine, no matter how hard it gets sometimes and I know it does for you too.

Ciao,
Nora.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

After seven years...


After about seven years of having a purely platonic relationship without any flirtation or any other innuendos whatsoever, J. and I became lovers this past weekend, out of the blue, with no forewarning whatsoever. I must say, it felt good to feel the arms of a man around me and to be kissed and caressed and to smell another human being from that up close. I relished it over the weekend several times and even though I had a nagging little voice in the back of my head warning me of the potential danger, I chose to ignore it and enjoyed myself.

After J. left late Sunday afternoon, I managed to get my feet closer to the ground and think about what had happened and what the implications could be. Was I ready for an intimate relationship like this and if yes, then who not better to have it with than with your best friend? I thought if I was willing to give up any of my autonomy and I thought that under certain circumstances I might be. J. was a lone wolf like myself and attached to his way of life like I was to mine and would not want to give it up, which I would not want him to. Nor would I be willing to give up my way of life for him, but he had not asked me to. As a matter of fact, we had not discussed one detail.

The next morning, I felt just a bit uncomfortable with the whole situation and decided to ask for clarity, which I did in an email. I asked him what his intentions were. If I was his girlfriend now and if we were in a relationship and if we were going to see each other more often. I knew he had the day off and expected an answer within a reasonable amount of time.

When it did not come, I started to get irritated and realized that I did not want these sort of complications in my life at all. I did not want to have to worry about what my meaning was in somebody's life and where I fit in. I did not want to wait for an answer and sit on pins and needles. I did not want to be dependent on someone else's feelings and actions and timing. I wanted to be free of all that and be an autonomous human being who was solely in charge of her life herself. In the evening I made up my mind to write an email to call the whole thing off, but I wanted to give him a chance to explain himself, so I called him and asked him to please respond to the email I had sent him, which he did shortly thereafter.

He wrote that he loved me as a friend, but was not in love with me, and did not see me as a partner but as a friend with extras and that he was not planning on seeing me more often. That was very clear to me then and I wrote him the email calling the whole thing off and at the same time making an end to our friendship, though it hurt me to do that.

We exchanged a few emails telling each other what fools we had been and how this had ruined a good friendship and his last one to me said that he hoped that when the storm was over maybe we could be friends again. I did not answer that one, because by now I was feeling so very bad and embarrassed for assuming so much. I have been miserable ever since.

Everything in my apartment reminds me of this past weekend and I can't put it out of my mind. I talked about it with my SPN this morning and she thought the solution was to blog about it, although J. had asked me not to do it. I didn't make a promise not to and he doesn't read my blog, so I've done it anyway. I had to get this out in the open. I can't walk around with this and not talk about it.

J. said I made an innuendo at an earlier meeting and it is true. I said I never wanted to be with another man again except if it were someone like him, because he would be perfect, but I didn't mean just for a roll in the hay and that is how he interpreted it. I guess that is what men do. I should have asked what his meaning was right away and not have assumed so much. I was caught up in the moment and the sweetness of it. I haven't been cuddled by anyone for a long time.

I have to get over this and I will do with enough rest and peace and quiet. Sleep will heal me, as it always does. I'm glad I wrote this down, it was important. I got it off my chest and that was necessary. It doesn't do me any good to speak in riddles and vagueness.

Ciao,
Nora

At times...


At times you have nothing to say at all, or rather, nothing you can say, but you feel that you need to reach out and communicate anyway through putting down words, any words, insignificant words even, as long as you reach out and say something to somebody who is reading you. Tonight is one of those night when I could tell you many things, but am unable to for various reasons, and yet I so very much need to feel that I am in touch with all of you who read me and that this somehow is going to help me feel better and like not such a lonely, sore person.

I feel very alone tonight and am in desperate need of company, yet there is no company to be found anywhere beside the dog and the cats. My sister is in Tokyo and the Exfactor is at home a half an hour away from here. I have to get through this night on my own and I´m not doing that so gracefully up to now. I´m afraid I´ve cut myself in my arm in an effort to get rid of the bad feelings I was having and was unable to get rid off. I have carefully cleaned the wound and taped it closed and put an bandage around it and for now that will do. I hope that will do.

I don´t write that down to shock you or to get you to feel sorry for me, but to give you an idea of my state of mind, which is not good, of course. I´m in an awful place and you don´t want to follow me there. I promise not to lure you there, but to try and come out of it. To talk myself out of it. To help get me in a better mood I have turned on some music and I´m listening to Bjork now. There is drum music in it and its rhythm is like the rhythm of a fluttering heart beat and very strong. I have the base turned up high so it sounds extra nice.

I have let down my guard this weekend, which is something I should never do and had not planned on doing. It happened quite unexpectedly and by accident. Once I had let it down, I kept it down, despite a little nagging voice in the back of my head that was warning me of the potential danger. That voice became louder today and I listened to it and came to a conclusion and acted on it and made a decision. I am dealing with the fall out of it now and I hope I will be okay again tomorrow morning after I have seen my SPN at 9 am. God forbid that I should sleep late and not make it to that appointment.

I didn´t sleep well last night and as a result slept until noon this afternoon. I tried to get up a few times before that, but I was unsuccessful. Every time I got up, I was still stuck in quicksand until the final time when I felt good and able to face the world. I got deeply wounded between then and now. I will not allow myself to be hurt. I can not afford it. I will not fall into the trap again. I have built up my life so carefully to be self sufficient and autonomous and free of entanglements and I almost threw it away.

--------------------


I've slept on the sofa for a few hours and feel less melodramatic now, although equally sore. I mean sore on the inside. I accidentally closed this without saving it and I thought that if it was still here, I would continue writing it. If not, I wouldn't bother with the whole thing and as you can see, it was still here. That's fate for you. Fate determines whether or not you get to read this. I'm s great believer in fate and how it determines the course of your life. That doesn't mean I take it lying down, because I do protest, but in the end there is a reason for everything, I suppose, a cause for why things happen and a lesson to be learned from them, no matter how obscure it may look at first.

So I must draw my lessons out of this current episode. After I have gone through all the pain of it. Buddhism is a handy religion and I let it be my guide. There is no punishing God and revengeful Father. There is only the desire for insight and understanding and the search for peace and tranquility. Those are the states of mind I wish to find. It's too bad I need to go through the motions of the old religion first to get to the newer one. Everything in life is a journey through your old habits in a reaction to what happens to you, and you need to make the journey quicker and in a straighter line every time something happens, until you skip certain things altogether and not bother with them anymore.

And now I need to go to bed, because I'm awfully tired. My thoughts are becoming sluggish and my mind is slowing down. It will be good to lie down and go to sleep, I'm ready for it.

Have a good night.

Ciao,
Nora

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Very early in the morning.


Well, I'm up and about again while J. sleeps in the bedroom in my little single bed. I slept on the sofa again, as usual, because it's just impossible for two people to sleep in that little bed together. One of them will fall out during the night and J. is too tall to sleep on the sofa and I'm used to it. I think I may have to get a double bed at the recycle store.

I did a massive cleaning job in an hour's worth of time yesterday afternoon. I worked my butt off and didn't get everything quite done before J. got here. I thought, "Oh, what the heck," and just left undone whatever I didn't get around to. The major stuff got done and I finished some small things while he was already here, like watering the plants and drying the dishes. I mopped the bathroom floor, but the other floors didn't get done, although they really needed it too.

Of course, J. doesn't come here to check if I'm a good housewife, but I do have enough sense of pride that I want the place to look halfway decent. He's known me for so long now that I don't have to make a big impression on him. I think we've been friends now for at least 7 years. That's a long time, isn't it, to get to know each other well?

Toby and Gandhi have decided that they like him very much and both laid on his lap together and would have stayed there all day and night if we had let them. They were so happy. That's because J. doesn't have a bad bone in his body and the animals sense that. It is the same way with Jesker who is always happy to see him and not the least bit insecure. He just accepts J. as someone who belongs here.

Yes, what the heart is full of, the mouth flows over with. That's an old Dutch saying that applies well now.

Anyway, yesterday was a very blustery day and the wind just about whipped the clothes of your body, although it was not cold. Every time I walked Jesker, I geared myself for some strong gusts of wind and I didn't bother about my hair, because it blew any which way, which was alright, because it was easy to fix with a few rubs over my head with both my hands. Sometimes short hair is very umcomplicated, especially if it's cut right and you don't have a lot of wax and hairspray in it, which I don't have now since I colored it.

Oh, by the way, I used that shampoo and conditioner I bought and it's great stuff. You know how normally when you wash your colored hair it gets that dull look? Well, it didn't this time. You have to leave the conditioner in your hair for two minutes and then rinse it out well and your hair comes out looking great. They should ask me to advertise that stuff. I could be their spokeswoman. And get paid for it, yeah! I should be so lucky. I would be happy if they gave me free products. Do you hear me Andrelon?

The animals are awake and are expecting unknown things of me. They all sit in my close vicinity and I'm supposed to figure it out. I will have to do a quick inspection of all the food bowls and turn the cold water faucet on for Toby. It seems that running water is the only kind of water he wants to drink.

Well, that's all I've got to report without going into the details, really. I hope you'll all have a wonderful Sunday with loudly chiming church bells and lots of sunshine. It's going to rain here, but they said that yesterday too and it hardly did.

Ciao,
Nora