My Mental Story- Part 3

This is the latest installment in a personal story by Linds B. A lot of people call her Rainbow. I’m grateful to call her my friend.

My therapist had asked me several times if I had wanted to consider medication, and every time I gave her the same answer, “I want to see how much ability I have to cope and figure this out on my own.” It was probably one of the best choices I could have made.

I wanted to know more, I looked into my illnesses much deeper, some suggestions on how to cope with them, how to really issue “self-care”. I came to realize it isn’t all about bath bombs, and relaxing music; (while those things do help a great deal) it’s about knowing how to be by yourself, not alone. In an effort to break my mental cycle I was stuck in, I started conquering one issue at a time, starting at the current root of the problem. Her, she had been living rent free in the back of my mind for too long and I was just too tired to let that continue. My initial idea was to become friends with her, be on good grounds. “If we’re civil, it’ll make things so much easier.”

No, no; bad idea. The more involved in her life I was, the more miserable I became. I’d see how “happy” she was with someone else, and truth be told, I did not want to see that; and yet, I all but forced myself into a “friendship” with her, for a good couple of months. While that was a stupid idea, again, it was one of those moments where something good came from it, like a flower blooming in a winter storm. I got to see her from another perspective, I had taken off those rose-colored goggles and saw everything. Let me tell you how incredibly satisfying that was, I felt like I could break those shackles she had on me. That was it, the first major step in my recovery process had been taken, but I was far from fixed, I still had so much work to do.

Again, coping methods are very important, so it was high time I figured that out. As I had said earlier, a major part of healing and growing is knowing how to be comfortable in your own company. Upon moving to my own place, I found exactly that. In spite of the fact I do indeed have roommates, I was still by myself. It felt natural, and oh-so comfortable. After a while I decided it would be time to reestablish the connections I had frayed so foolishly. To my surprise it went better than I expected, I slowly regained my ability to be social. I appreciated the company of my friends so much more, not only because I had been without them for such a long time, but because I can be by myself and be happy! That’s it, it was coming back to me. Happiness. I was taking so many steps I never fathomed I could ever have taken, that alone was enough to motivate me to continue, to carry on. Make no mistake, in the midst of all this development, I stumbled, I fell, I had several days a week where I couldn’t drive myself to get out of bed, so I called out of work.

“One day, my mind won’t be this chaotic.”

Behold, one of the positive things I told myself that I believed. Overcoming all of this madness was doable.

As time went on, I continued to become more miserable with my vendor job, something about it wasn’t fulfilling, my “bad days” started becoming more prevalent all over again. I knew I needed to get a new job, but once again I found myself in a comfortable spot and I was not mentally ready to start over yet again. As much as I wanted to be shocked by it, once again the universe decided it was not going to let me settle a second time for something that makes me miserable; on one of the many conference calls I had to endure for this job, my absolute bitch of a boss told all of us that the company we worked product for was dropping their contract with the company that hired me, thus eliminating my position. At first, I was terrified, as if there weren’t several other job opportunities out there. I took time to reflect on this. The saying “when opportunity knocks, open the door” or however it goes, yeah, I have to call bullshit, opportunity doesn’t just knock at the door, it kicks that bitch down. Upon knowing my time with this terrible company was coming to a close, I was already improving mentally and physically. I stopped feeling nauseous and waking up at the ass-crack of dawn. Some days I felt like I could take on anything. In lieu of that, I decided to get myself plane tickets to Portland Oregon to visit my sister. Let me start this off by saying the idea of flying by myself got my anxiety by the balls (metaphorically speaking of course). But life is all about taking risks, and stepping out of your comfort zone, right? I know people always say that, but I never actually imagined that I would be one of those people. If you would have told me maybe a year or more ago that I would be flying alone, all the way across the country (with a layover) I would have laughed in your face.

My Mental Story- Part 2

Hey kids, this is the second part of a three part series by my lovely and amazing friend, Linds B. 

Every second of my existence was plagued with thoughts of her.

“Why wasn’t I good enough?”

“Am I really that unlovable?”

“What did I do wrong?”

“It was all my fault.”

Relentless self-blame. All I could think about was how my life would never be complete again without her. I was so sure I would never get out of this rut until I had her back in my life. I would try everything to get her back. With what little energy I could muster up, I would spend it all on efforts to reclaim her; which of course only made things worse. My breakdowns and anxiety attacks were more severe, more constant, to the point where I was always in pain, almost always in tears, vomiting on a daily basis. I had reached my breaking point. My old coping methods began to surface, I cut myself, many times. When I looked at my reckless decision, I cried, I watched my tears mix with my blood. It got so tricky to not explain the inner workings of my mind at the time to my parents, as I had never been one to share anything with my parents in spite of the fact I love them dearly. I tried talking to my mom about something so small and broke down, a panic attack quickly followed, I had never had one in front of either of my parents before. Through my tears I told my own mother I had lost the will to live.

There’s not a single doubt in my mind it’s the most difficult thing for any parent to hear that your child wants to die. In that moment, I could see how hard she tried to keep it together, but she didn’t lose her mind, she didn’t break down, she hugged me tight and told me that everything would end up okay in the end. In perhaps one of the strangest ways, that breakdown brought us closer than ever before in my life. Later that evening, as I sat alone in my bed, to my surprise, my mother came knocking on my door with two cups of coffee. She sat on the bed with me, and just talked to me about, well, everything. She broke her habitual evening ritual with my father; having coffee and watching Jeopardy and whatever else may come on TV until they both fall asleep, just to be with me. The most beautiful part about it all was that she didn’t fill my head with sweet delusions of perfect scenarios. It was in this moment I decided I was going to do something, I didn’t want to feel sad anymore, I didn’t just want to exist, I wanted to live, and I wanted to live my best life!

While coming to that conclusion is a step, nothing will ever prepare you for what you must put up with in order to make it through all the things life will inevitably throw at you. At this time, I knew nothing of self-care, to be what always cured my moody-blues was surrounding myself with others. So, what do you do when there aren’t any “others”, I would think to myself. My brain wasted no time swiftly reminding me how lonely I was, and then, you guessed it, breakdown.

That repetitive cycle of lifting myself up and getting knocked back down progressed on for what felt like a lifetime. After another talk with my mother, I had come to the decision I was going to look into some therapy. I knew I was in far too deep to take all of this on by myself, which before I knew it was progress in itself to have a thought like that. Luckily, I had a connection through a work friend to a solid therapist. I wasted no time getting everything set up and before I knew it I was in for an appointment. No lie, I was skeptical of the whole thing for a moment, knowing perfectly well I have gone through plenty of therapists in my past and have gotten nothing from it; After my first appointment I was already feeling the progress, as small as it was. The second session rolled around, I spilled my guts about everything and anything I could think of that could contribute to my struggles. I also learned and accepted that there’s never a day in life where you stop learning about yourself; it was that day I was diagnosed with bipolar, on top of everything else that was going on in my brain. It was weirdly freeing to hear, as crazy as that may come off to others, to me it was an opportunity to further getting to know myself.

 

My Mental Story

The following post is part of a series written by Linds B. It follows her journey from there to here. It speaks to the change that is within us all.

In the past 2 years, I’ve spent hours, days . . weeks taking the time to better myself as a human and allow my mind to grow. I can truthfully say, as painful as it was, it was one of the most beneficial and gratifying experiences of my life. To those few rare humans out there who can attest to the fact that it is absolutely no easy task, my hat goes off to you. Self-transformation tries you in every way possible and even in aspects you never knew to exist. But here I am, standing proudly and so much better for everything I’ve endured. To those of you out there who struggle, I’m here to tell you that, as cliché as it sounds, it does get better and I beg you not to give up.

I write this in the hopes that my experience will drive you to keep pushing even on the hardest days where the only thought you can produce is “I can’t”.

Two years ago, at this time, I can tell you for damn sure I never thought I would be sitting in my own place, writing a story like this; my drive to move forward was all but nonexistent due to being comfortable in what I was yet to discover. I was in my own personal hell. I was googly-eyed, caught up in a woman who only knew of greed and manipulation. She used me for everything that I was and could have become at the time. However, I didn’t exactly realize that, and I can tell you if I did, I likely would have denied it to the ends of the earth. I allowed myself to get so comfy in working a job that offered me next to nothing, while living at her grandmother’s house. Getting a new, more challenging job? Getting a place of my own? “No thanks”.

The universe, however, was not having that mindset of mine. Our relationship started getting “rough”, for lack of a better term. Even in the midst of realizing that she was in fact cheating on me and had been for some time, I still didn’t want everything I “had” to go away. That would require a lot of change, and that’s scary. Thus, began the long strings of endless and unexpected breakdowns and anxiety attacks, to which I was told I was being “too loud and expressive about my emotions”. Fuck you! Stifling emotions never got anyone anywhere. As the strenuous emotional activity continued, things got more tense, and before I knew it, she had broken up with me in one of the shittiest ways possible; Showing up with her new “parasitic host”, or girlfriend, (whatever you want to call it) and not even looking me in the face; simply saying “it’s over”. She needed answers, she told me. To this day I still can’t help but wonder if those answers were indeed in another woman’s pussy, since that was the only place she seemed to look. All petty business aside, I didn’t know it yet, but that breakup was one of the best things that ever happened to me. With that, I got all of my things out of her grandmother’s place and moved it all back into my parent’s place.

The depression really started setting in. To shine a tinge of positivity on this situation, I had landed a better paying, full time job as a vendor. Unfortunately, that proceeded to push my limits even further, which at the time I could not handle. Before anything could begin in that job I had to complete a thirty-six-hour online training seminar. Sounds like a breeze, right? No, of course not. I knew not of an easy time. I went a solid two months with minimal sleep due to waking up at all hours with severe anxiety attacks and unmovable depression, thus triggering constant vomiting. I don’t think I could have told you what happiness was, that wasn’t even a word my mind understood anymore. I was fragile, alone, I pushed everyone away for the sake of putting all of my being into one poisonous bitch. I never left the house, I hadn’t been outside for the longest time, until I finished that training and had to leave the house in order to work. My emotional state remained the same, broken, I was an empty shell. “New opportunities are a good thing.” I attempted to convince myself, as the entirety of what makes me, me, was stripped away. Hire me first and then tell me how you find my hair unprofessional. Every morning began the same way, six thirty in the morning . . a piercing alarm. I would lay in bed trying to decide if I actually must work and try not to vomit at the idea of leaving my room. I’d work up enough strength to remind myself I needed to make money, then I would proceed to all but fall out of bed, put on my “good Christian straight woman attire”, and cram my rainbow hair into a long brown wig. “Who the fuck are you?” I’d ask myself, staring into the mirror. I wasn’t happy, nothing could make me happy.

Our search for the perfect Cuban sammy does the ‘Rumba’

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Sup homies! Linds B here. A very close human of mine, Ali Clark, took a lovely little trip to Florida for her graduation! Naturally with her being in a part of the U.S. that Marco and I likely will not travel to (for the Cuban sammy challenge at least), we had to ask her to snag a Cubano while she was down there. And of course, she delivered! Here is her review on her Floridian Cuban experience!

Hello all – I am very new to doing the Lord’s work, so I’ll be trying my best to live up to the Cubano-aficionado’s review standards.

While here in Naples I was told to seek out the best Cuban sandwich around, so I did what any person today would do and googled “best Cuban sandwich in Naples”, bringing me glowing reviews of Rumba Cuban Cafe. This cafe is a family owned business with two locations both with a 4.5 star rating and a slew of reviews, many boasting about THE BEST CUBAN SANDWICH IN NAPLES!!!!! So naturally this was the place to check out.

Rumba’s was only about 2 miles from my Airbnb so I hopped in the car and got the only parking space left in the lot. This place was PACKED. So much so that you couldn’t even go inside, and I got the last table outside (lucky me, right?). Within 5 minutes we had 4 different waitresses ask us what we wanted to drink – I was almost afraid I was going to end up with 4 beers. I was a little afraid at first because their FAMOUS CUBAN SANDWICH wasn’t even on the menu… but luckily it was still something I could order. I didn’t come a whole 2 miles to leave empty handed ya know.

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When this experience started to go sour was when the wait for food started to take pretty long, almost 45 minutes. Granted, there were a lot of people there but I was hoping that meant that my Cuban was going to be made with a lil extra love… but I’m not so sure about that.

Now – I’ve probably only ever had one other Cuban in my life so I could be COMPLETELY wrong here – but this was not a good one, despite being told seven times by staff how amazing it was going to be. I’m not sure if they’re trained for this or how every waitress found out I had ordered a Cuban, but every single one of them felt the need to comment on this fantastic journey I was about to embark on. Out comes my sandwich, placed in front of me as if it is a bar of solid gold (I’m really not kidding about that, it felt like I was sinning to even touch it) and it looked pretty mediocre. I’m willing to look past a not so great exterior, because it’s what’s on the inside that counts right?? Well, this was very lackluster in that department as well.

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For the first bite I was expecting an even amount of everything since it’s technically the middle of the sandwich, but all I was left with was a mouthful of dry pork. The bread was reminiscent of cardboard left out on a humid day – not much of a crunch, not completely soggy- it was a weird in between. The pork never got juicy even though the whole sandwich was dripping in grease, so no matter how long I chewed, it was still what I imagine the consistency of mulch is. And lastly, the cheese was nowhere near melty enough. I don’t know about you, but there’s nothing I love more than super melty cheese (well I guess there are a few things but that’s pretty high on the list).

The Verdict

Overall it WAS a Cuban sandwich, it DID have all of the necessary ingredients but it lost points for all of the above issues. Out of 10 this Cuban unfortunately deserved a 4. It lost 1 point each for the bread and excess grease, and 2 points for dry pork and lack of melt.

Hopefully the next round of Cubans blows this one out of the water. Til next time!

Big thank you to Linds B for the intro and to the lovely Ali Clark for being our first ever correspondent here at sorryless! Linds and me gave her this assignment (begged her) at the last minute and she nailed it. After which she went skinny dipping and then had a champagne party to celebrate her college graduation.

Kurt Vonnegut would be proud.

A year of hot buttah goodness

It-Was-A-Very-Good-Year-Frank-Sinatra

It’s been a very good year.

If I were asked to describe my 2017, I would call it a blessing of people, places, times, events and wonderful things. It wasn’t perfect, but that’s plenty fine with me since I wasn’t asking for such a thing.

What I do know for certain is that my three sixty five provided a turning point for yours truly as per my health, seeing as how I scored a clean bill for an entire calendar year. And yes, I’m calling it with three weeks to go . . because I am feeling pretty fucking giddy about this latest chapter of my life. I want to be able to call it before I finish my Christmas shopping, seeing as how that shit probably won’t get done until some time in January. . .

These days, my mental health is a frolicking tiptoe through blushing tulips whose bloom is a swim of peace, love and tranquility. It’s been forever since I felt this good, which is a very long time if you’re keeping score at home.

Before I get cooking on this entry, I’d like to introduce a talent whose up and comingness is the stuff of “Next Big Thing”. I call the kid a rock star because he has that something different about him when he’s loosing the words and delivering up a new age sound whose solvency is a respectful nod to the music of other times. If Brandon Tyler Wile was a stock, I’d bring the straight cash, homie . . . because he has ups.

 

I said goodbye to ghosts this year, and was reminded as to why that was a good idea by someone who has become very special to me. Someone whose selfless manner leaves me breathless, and whose strength and perseverance is the stuff of superheroes. I said hello to friendships whose fruition is a testament of knowing and belief. These people are my wishes come true; they are my unique investments in the human condition to which I can hang my dreams on with confidence. They are the peace of mind, the love abundant and the harmony whose provisions are made possible by the music of the soul.

And from this, sorryless was born. With the brilliant pen of Linds B and the caustic wit of yours truly, I have a very good feeling about this place. This feeling is engendered from the esprit de corps that me and Linds B bring to just about any endeavor we suit up for. She is my wartime consigliere of a pal and, and friends like her are a platinum proposition whose dividends keep on keeping on. This blog is gonna be about just that . . . the keep to keeping on.

If all the other parts of 2017 had been less than stellar, it still would have been worth the ride. Because these peeps divined a music, borne of the crazy chances and I understand the world with more clarity and hope thanks to them. We have aligned ourselves with stars, we have weathered rainy Mondays and we have painted Shakespeare on many a social gathering.

Pulp Fiction Gourmet

They are my wishes come true, my unfailing constant in an increasingly uncertain world. They are the singular description of a life well loved, the safe haven word whose comfort sustains, inspires and emboldens me to want more of that very good same. Because they make me feel a certain way whenever they’re in the room.

Home.

Champagne Girl

Look at your eyes, lighting up a room; effortlessly, flawlessly. Your smile with the given ability to melt even the coldest heart. Your personality; glittering, outgoing, beautiful. The human personification of a Gatsby soirèe. How do I describe your beauty without sounding cliché? A face and body created in the image of Aphrodite. No, no; as you cannot be compared, you are your own unique kind of beauty. This goes far beyond what the eye can see, darling. Maybe it’s in the way you carry yourself, you easily stand out in a crowd. Perhaps it’s the way your heart beats with passion; or the way your mind flows with imagination and truth. You’re new, mysterious and a goddamn sight to behold. Truthfully no orchestration or symphony of words could begin to communicate just how auspicious of an existence you have created for me by entering my life, Champagne girl.