Sunday, August 27, 2006


I am going to go ahead and say that today was a good day. I got up at nine, I did fall back asleep when I got to the couch, but I am okay with that because I had gotten up. I lazed around the house much of the day, but I did sign up for Weight Watchers online tools and bought a camera (to replace one I lost.) I also did some dishes and tidying. I kept track of my Weight Watchers points today, and got very close to my target, (this is something I haven't been doing lately, I have let anxiety get to me.)

The reason I am going to read this as a good day and not as a bad day is because that's what I've learned in therapy, it's a different way of thinking about things then I used to. It would be fair to say I didn't accomplish much today. In the past, I would sit and stew, thinking about how much more I needed to get done, and stay up late, hoping I would do some of it. When someone told me that I was too hard on myself I would not think they understood my situation, I thought, if I was gentle with myself, EVEN LESS would get done!

What I learned in therapy, and had to finally believe enough to try, was that I had to be different about the way I saw things. If I accomplished 20% of the things I wanted to get done, I should praise myself for what I did get done. The 80% I didn't get done I should not scold myself for. It is okay to say "I would have liked to accomplish more. What factors contributed to me only accomplishing 20%? Was my goal realistic in the first place?" But I should not call myself "lazy" or "a loser."

The outcome of this lesson was different than I expected. Since I wasn't pushing myself, I assumed I wouldn't want to do anything at all. Instead, the pressure was off, so I just naturally accomplished things. And since I was focusing on the positive, praising myself when I got even little things done, I felt motivated to do just one more thing, so I could feel proud of something else, not just escaping the shaming I used to give myself when something didn't get done.

This attitude is what helped me lose 15 pounds with Weight Watchers. If I wrote everything I ate down I would be proud of myself, even if I ate WAY TOO MUCH. If I got close to my target I would be proud of myself, even if I was off by a few points. If I ordered an ice cream cone, but only ate half of it, I would still be proud of myself for throwing the second half away. You might think I would have lost more weight if I had said to myself "you didn't meet the target- you did a bad job today" or "you shouldn't have gotten that ice cream cone" but if I had acted that way, I would have QUIT. My encouragement was what kept me going.

So today wasn't perfect. But I DID do a few things. I am going to cheer on the few things I did do, and tomorrow I will wake up bright and early, ready to face another day with myself, a sweet encouraging person, not a mean drill seargent who would make me want to stay in bed. :)

Saturday, August 26, 2006


I was giving advice on how to go from being depressed to being not depressed, and I forgot a very important thing! Praise! Praise, praise, praise!

When you are getting something accomplished, or have accomplished something, praise yourself...alot! Don't tell yourself "I should have finished this months ago" just congratulate yourself!

I painted the bathroom! It looks muuuuuuuch better. When I moved in,there was mold growing on the walls, they had cracks, and the walls were greying. Now the walls are a nice, bright white :)

The house is still TRASHED, but at least the bathroom is done. Everything is back where it should be, the fixtures are back and the decorations are back up. Cleaning up the rest should be a less stressful job, it can be done a little at a time, and it wont interfere with hygiene (I had to sponge bath myself in my empty, curtianless shower.)

So WAY TO GO DIANA! I did it! I did it! I did it! When I finished the living room, I decided I didn't want to paint any other rooms, but when I felt the satisfaction of doing it, and saw how it spruced up the living room, I wanted to do the bathroom. Now I feel like I don't want to paint another room, but I will bet you anything I will want to do the kitchen sooner or later!

The house looks better. I believe that a beautiful enviornment reduces stress, so I think the work was well worth it. I am very proud of myself!

next day

Well, I said today is a new day, but I carried through some of the unhealthy behavior into today. Lately, I have been getting myself out of bed at 9 (a miracle for me on a day off!) I could coax myself out of bed by grabbing my pillow and saying to myself if I want to go back to sleep thats fine, I will just do it on the couch. What ends up happening is I have put no pressure on myself to do anything, so I stay awake! I guess I use sleeping as a procrastination method.

I think that is a big reason why yesterday and today were such a step back for me. I had decided to paint the bathroom a few weeks ago, but didn't feel inspired recently. The landlord knocked on the door and said "have you wiped the walls with bleach yet? When your done my nephew here will prime the bathroom" so I did it, not being in the mood to (I only do things if I am in the mood or have a deadline-wish that wasnt the case) and now have the room all taped up, so I have to do it in the next few days. Knowing I have something to do ahead of me I think is what led me to retreat into sleep yesterday and today.

The lesson I learned yesterday was I should write about whats going on sooner so I can feel better and move on, and thats the case! I do feel better :)

I am so lonely without my charles (he left on the 14th and I havent gotten an e-mail since the 19th.) I am hopeful that this will make me spend more time with my friends and to blog more, a silver lining.

A bad day

I think a good sign of my current level of health is that today I had a really bad day, and I know that tomorrow will be different, and I could recognize unhealthy patterns today that in the past felt just normal, or felt like I had no control of.

Last night I remembered that since my therapist closed her city office, I would have to figure out the bus schedule to get to her suburban office for my appointment today. When I looked it up I learned there was no bus that went there. I planned to take a cab but realized it would cost $50 so I decided to rent a car. I was at the car rental office this morning and couldn't rent the car because I didn't have the $200 available on my credit card (the sad irony is I have a ton of money right now.) I called and left a message while the car rental people sweetly drove me home, and then collapsed on my couch and felt like shit.

I felt like a complete loser, not just disappointed, but like the most irresponsible person in the world. Dr. T noticed this behavior once when I was late for an appointment, so I was able to recognize that this behavior, and response, was not a healthy one, and although I didn't do much to change it, I was at least able to recognize the feelings as not reasonable, instead of thinking I deserve to feel that way.

I spent most of the day sleeping and eating, my house is TRASHED (partly because I have the bathroom taped for painting, so everything is in the livingroom) I know that I was making unhealthy choices by staying in the house and sleeping. It would have been healthier to go for a bike ride, eat only healthy things, and maybe to have called a friend or wrote a blog post about how I was feeling. I didn't do those things, but I recognize that what I was doing was part of an unhealthy pattern, not misery outside of my control.

And for the last of my unhealthy behaviors, I have stayed up late watching TV. I could recognize myself cumpulsively continuing to watch, when I so clearly wanted to sleep. Years ago I would stay up late like this, stewing in my own discomfort, and not see it as contributing to my depression.

I will now go to bed, knowing today was a bad day. Today was not a gloomy sign that the depression is back and I should just submit, because I have no control, I had a bad day, I made some mistakes in my choices, and tomorrow I get to start fresh.

My thinking has really been reprogrammed from therapy. Therapy works. It is not sick people who go to therapy, it is sick people who choose to remain sick. Healthy people go to therapy, they are the ones who are willing to change. I was willing to listen to my therapist when she pointed out errors in my thinking. It would be easy to say "you just don't understand how hard it is to live my life, to be me" or to proudly act like "I know what I'm doing", keeping my thinking patterns just to be stubborn, but I submitted as much as I could, becuase I trust and like her, and because when I started I knew my life depended on it, (a year ago suicide was still a secretly attractive idea to me.)

I have come very far, and I am very proud of myself. I am obviously not perfect, look at me, I made some irresponsible choices in planning for this appointment, and in how I reacted to the dissappointment, but my expectation of myself isn't perfection anymore. And I have fallen down and made some mistakes, but I am just going to learn from them and move on now, unlike before, when I would be so mean in how I would think about myself, I would beat myself up, but not anymore.

Anyone who just started reading my blog recently, look at the beginning of it (april 05 I think) I read it and see a completely different person. If you are reading this you might be a person who has issues with depression or another chemical imbalance, I can tell you, don't give up hope! Keep going, GO TO THERAPY and take your medication. Make tiny changes for the better and be proud of yourself. Make good choices, and remember you are always making choices. Don't expect things to get better right away, but know that if you keep working they will get better. Treat yourself the way you deserve to be treated, with KINDNESS AND LOVE. STOP hating yourself!!! It will work. I promise it will work.

Now, having made the healthy choice of writing about my feelings, I feel better! I wish I had done this earlier today! Oh well, there is a lesson for next time, I forgive myself!

Good night!

Friday, August 18, 2006

Just e-mailed to roomie Tera (Oh! What a feeling!)

Hi Tera,

I have tried to get a hold of you by phone but have had no luck. I have got a new roommate set up for October, but she is willing to move in in Sept if you want. I thought it was a nice idea. It would be nice for me to get the stress of the transition over with, and I thought it would be nice for you since it would be cheaper to pay for a storage space than to pay rent & utilities for a place you aren’t at. However, there is no pressure at all, if you want to keep things as they are until Oct, of course that is just fine.

One thing I do want to put pressure on you is about returning my belongings: Devdas, my Tupperware, my pan, and anything else you might have taken. Remember, you never asked me if you could borrow these things in the first place. If you had asked, especially after you took my pan and never returned it, I would have said no. But you didn’t ask, you haven’t returned them, and I grow more and more insulted every day that they are gone. Would it have been okay if I, without your permission, took one of your casserole dishes to someone’s house I had only known a few weeks and leave it there forever? Of course not. Imagine if I did that to you repeatedly and you will know how I feel about this situation.

I sense I will never have my belongings back if I just continue to ask nicely. I think I have asked you nicely for the pan about 4 times, which is 4 times too many to ask for something I never even consented to you taking in the first place. I don’t trust that this is a priority to you so I am holding on to some of your DVDs as collateral until my belongings are returned. Chapelle seasons 1&2 until Devdas and my Tupperware is returned, and your Yoga DVD until you return my pan & lid, or purchase a black pan of the same size or larger with the same type of steam vent on top. By doing this, if I don’t get my belongings back I can look at myself in the mirror and say “at least you didn’t let her completely walk all over you”

I’ll have you know I hate being put in a position of having to be a hard-ass. I HATE being forced to seem “bitchy” or “naggy” I am most comfortable preventing and solving conflict with kindness. I wanted to talk to you about this one last time, nicely, really letting it sink in how offended and hurt I feel so you could return my things simply because you are an ethical person, not because you had some outside incentive. I am not willing to hound you just to get a hold of you, so I am just taking the next step to make you care about returning my stuff.

As far as the moving date, I would love a phone or e-mail message letting me know if you want to stay until October 1, but if I don’t get one I will just assume that you do. If you do decide to stay, please leave the rent check in my v-file on or before Aug 31st, or if you leave it at the apartment, on or before the 28th (I have a trip the 29th-1st)

I really, sincerely, honestly want our living situation to end amicably. I want the transition to be smooth and be as painless as possible for both of us. I hope that you want the same thing.

Best of Luck,

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

This was a response to my ad for a roommate on craigslist!

I'm writing you After excessive enquiries on accommodation listing on the your property happens to interest my personalty and has been singled out by me. I am Kate a 26 year old female living in the Great britain,EUROPE after the death of my father and am a professional in the field of modelling and fashion design. The daily theory achievements have warranted me to want to relocate to Us so i can further more on my career and make it well in life course i have all it takes toThese have warranted the need for a special and comfortableroom and roommate were I will stay for the duration of a year or more depending on how the lease is been drawn; all expenses are the responsibility of my client who is owing me some few dollars. Please do get back to me as soon as you can, with the full details on: Rent, Room Size, Neirbourhood,Intersections and exact amount for rent, method of payment since I will be arriving ending of Aug . Furnished?telling me the modulation involved in the rent of the room. You can email at ******** i will be waiting for you urgent reply
and will also be looking forward to you reply.
I look forward to hearing from you soon.
May God Bless You!!!
**** ****..

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

I'm hot (and a little bit nasty)

Yeah, I'm hot. I got hit on today! I have been obese for the last few years so this is such a treat. YAAAAY! While I was waiting outside before a dentist appointment some guy waved to me from his car and I waved back assuming I knew him. He walked up to me a few minutes later, an ok figure and face, maybe with a little extra beer pudge. I said "oh I thought I knew you" and he said he thought I was a girl who works at starbucks. He asked me what I was doing, and I said waiting for a dentist appointment, and then he said I had beautiful teeth. LOL. I immediately let him know I had a boyfriend and thanked him for the compliment on my teeth. He thanked me for talking to him. LOL. Even if this guy was a dork I was so flattered to have a guy coming up to me stuttering and trying so hard. It makes me feel so happy about Charles, it reminds me that I am with him by choice, that I am desired and I am picking the best there is (he really is.)

So yeah, I am hot, but I am also nasty! Soon after Tera moved in she took one of my pots to some guy she had just started seeing and left it there. When I noticed it gone I said something like "you left it at his house? You havent been together that long, that wasn't a good idea." She assured me it would be okay. It is now 6 months later, she isn't seeing the guy and I don't have my pot. I have asked for it in different ways at least 4 times. A comprable pot (which wouldn't even match the set) costs about $40 at marshall's.

Maybe she made a huge mistake and she feels really bad about it, she took something of mine without my permission and never brought it back. You would assume after doing something so stupid she would never do it again...nope. She took a piece of my tupperware, that would cost 19.50 to replace, and has not brought it back. I have asked nicely about the pot a number of times, that obviously isn't working, so I am taking NASTY measures. I have taken, without her permission, Her Chapelle show DVDs, Season 1 & Season 2. When I get my dishes back, she gets her DVDs back. She had no right to take my stuff, she obviously doesn't care, so this is something to make her care.

I want to say it in the most congenial way possible, in a way that she will agree to it. In a way that will make her feel the guilt to match her actions (I made her cry once when I pointed out her selfish self.) I don't want to look like a crazy person who gets all fired up about a couple of dishes, but I am fired up, because it's not just about the dishes, it is mostly about the disrespect. And I want my dishes!

I will keep you up to date on how the Chapelle show drama goes down. Did I mention she is moving (halleluja!) and yes, still owes me $700.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Arm's Length Love

Today Charles and I went shopping for a dress for his mother. Today felt like we have been together for 20 years. I am very tired after working 16 consecutive days with only 3 of them off. He seems very tired too, he is working double shifts at work, working on a paper he will present at a confrence in South Africa, and I think tired from the stress that is to come (he is leaving in less than a week for Kenya to do the research for his dissertation.)

He looks like he has put on a few pounds. That bothers me. It's not a sexiness thing as much as a health thing. I am thinking so seriously (well until this week) about my health and eating choices, so to see him make unhealthy ones gets my brain thinking about heart disease and strokes. It also bothers me because I wonder if the weight gain is a sign that he is seriously stressed.

What stood out to me in the last ten minutes is the true nature of my feelings for him, I admire him SOOOOO much, I think he is one of the sweetest people I have ever met, but I am still, after over 7 months, not completely relaxed in love. I know mentally that he is the best guy for me, ever. He compliments me intellectualy, he is so ambitious and trustworthy, he is incredibly patient with my shortcomings, and very importantly, he sees the person I am, he is able to grasp and understand (and even appreciate) the many aspects of me. But, my love for him is very mental. My heart is still very guarded, I still (although I don't let on) hold him at an arm's length.

Well, not completely, which explains very understandably why I do remain so guarded. Where he is going, his home village, has gangs of criminals with machetes, who have recently targeted a person returning from America, because they thought he had money. Kenya's government is being criticized right now because the security situation is not good. Charles told me that and it sparked an old irrational thought that I have just recently begun to let go of.

When I was a child I was the target of teasing. I was a very anxious and sensitive girl, and it affected me terribly. When I was almost nine, my mother was hit by a train while she was walking her dog. I moved in with my father and his girlfriend, and although I was depressed, I was keeping my head above water. Three years later my stepmother left my father, and in the process, me, but at least I still had my dad. But not for long, only a month or so after she left, he began drinking, first a tequila sunrise every night, but soon a bottle a night, him passed out on the porch with the door unlocked leaving his 12 year old daughter exposed. I spent the next few years focused on how to get my father back, I was alone in a house of squalor, with only his shell there to pay the bills. (Barely) passing my classes and pretending to have a normal life were tasks I would have to pull off alone, with no support from a parent. Only three years after my stepmother and father left me, my maternal grandmother died of cancer. I felt that she had not tried hard enough to fight it, and made the decision to not depend on people because when you love someone, it hurts so much when they leave you, maybe it would be easier to not love.

I also, having anxiety disorder, had my anxious feelings validated by all of these tragedies hitting my life. I had anxiously told my mom to not walk the dog on the train tracks, and she got killed by a train. I (correctly) knew that my father's use of tequila sunrises to relax was not a healthy thing, and I watched my prediction happen before my eyes. The anxiety disorder was strong, and so was the feeling that I was somehow cursed. If I love something, it will be taken away. That is just the way I feel. I have gotten so much better with this, Risperdal has helped, but it has lingered on and this Kenya thing has proved it.

If Charles was murdered in Kenya, that would have to be the end of me. I finally get a good man, I finally have the possibility of moving into the future, of caring about and more importantly TRUSTING someone. And he disappears too. Just the fact that I am entertaining this idea goes to show the level of my conditioning. I have allowed someone 10% into my heart, what would I do if he was taken from me? I am just beginning to recover, it would be such an extreme blow.

And then I also have the empathy pain, another reason why I love people at arm's length. When someone I love hurts, it hurts me too much to bear. If I hold them emotionally at arm's length I don't have to feel the empathy pain as much. Poor Charles can't even stay overnight in his home village. He might be being paranoid, he is a little bit about crime, (he witnessed a murder here in the US, he even had to testify!) Paranoid or not, his visit home is being tarnished by fear of danger to himself or his family, that is so completely unfair!

I love Charles intellectualy, but emotionally, like with just about everybody, I am rather detached. I am always ready to release and quickly move on. If my mother, stepmother, father, and grandmother all left me, then I need to be ready for the next blow, I have to keep myself upright, no one will catch me, so strong emotional attachments are a danger to my survival. It is incredible the amount I have been able to feel for Charles, if I can keep myself from ending it (and he can keep himself from being murdered) I assume over the years I will be able to let go a little more.

I am worried about myself in the next three months without him. I don't want to get depressed and I don't want my feelings to fade (as the path of least resistance) I have come so far in the last year. I love someone worthy at least, even if it is only at arm's length.