RIP, Bryan

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Cool Links / Clicky Linky, Hauntings, Too Long For Twitter

I found out earlier today that a friend from my younger days killed himself on Monday. I still can’t wrap my head ’round it.
Many tears have been shed.
Confusion voiced, to an unfortunate and extremely sweet friend that I stumbled into immediately after receiving the news.
Guilt over being a Debbie Downer on that friend’s evening.
Decision to not wallow, and to celebrate life instead, in Bryan’s honor.
Shame over not reaching out after hearing through the grapevine that his mom passed away last year.
Rage over the waste of confused yet kind person with great musical talent.
Guilt over causing my extremely hard-working husband to delay watching the Walking Dead, out of respect for my raw feelings.
More tears, more rage and a few impassioned proclamations, including one to climb out of sadness and celebrate, again.
Happiness while briefly connecting with a far away beloved for a silly video chat and much giggling.
Guilt over pushing sadness to the side.

And now, just puffy eyes and a simple plea remain, as clichè as it is:

If you are considering harming yourself, don’t. You are not alone. There are resources available to help you. Please reach out to any of the countless suicide prevention charities or local services available to you.

If you know someone may be contemplating harming themselves or someone else, please try and get them help. You cannot “rescue” anyone, only they can. Don’t fool yourself, you are not in control. They are. But you may be able to help them get on the path out of the darkness. And you aren’t alone. Those same organizations will help you get help for your friend. You can Google it for fresh results, but below are a few from my search.

And if you have no one that you feel is in need but still want to help, please consider donating to charities that help those that find themselves unable to cope. 

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

Take Five to Save Lives

Veterans Crisis Line

I hope you found the peace you were seeking, Bryan.
*blows a kiss*

The Spoon Theory by Christine Miserandino

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Fibromyalgia, Too Long For Twitter, Whining

Finding myself in a whirlpool swirling with information from recent web surfing in Health Blahs (my name for my mixed bag of health challenges), and a few have really stuck with me. In my last post, I shared a find on techniques to improve memory and fought with myself about doubling up the goodness. I chose to split the two fave finds from that excursion, mainly to allow myself  more time to digest the second post.

The Spoon Theory, by Christine Miserandino has been percolating for a week now, but I am still thinking this is a pretty damned fine way to explain the daily challenges, preparations and planning I need to be comfortable and less needy for whatever may come. Even my therapist, T-Pain, as I call her, suffers from chronic pain and couldn’t find fault with it. To me, the explanation just sings many of the concepts I can’t express. 

Obviously, you have to suspend disbelief that you have any tangible way to predict with any certainty what the day has in store for you. Preparations are made and plans are laid to minimize chaos wherever possible. Much of the time, precautions taken end up not having been necessary. But, many times it’s just having done the preparations that gives comfort, rather than any actual need having been met.

Familiar folks: You’ve heard my whining before. Any new folks: I struggle with pain daily. Many that I’m close to also suffer from chronic pain, or love someone that does, and there is a sort of short hand when talking about such things. Traditional follow up questions to someone revealing a new health issue are suspended with an immediate and sympathetic acceptance of the news. This is typically met with a wave of the hand or a “Yeah, yeah, yeah. Anyways, …” It’s a shared experience. No filler words needed. Yadda yadda yadda.

But for those that don’t really get it, I find that it is tough to find a common language to have more than a superficial conversation without struggling to explain a response that is not standard.

As for what I mean by struggling to explain, for example, being fat (No platitudes, please? We’ve grown beyond that.) and not talking about being miserable/ecstatic on a diet and/or exercise program of one kind or another, I find that I am typically greeted with a sympathetic/energetic encouragement to get back into that cycle. If I, in a moment of honesty to strip away a lengthy avoidance resulting in no real conversation occurring, reveal that no, in fact, I really shouldn’t run. As in, I’ve been advised against doing the healthiest and most successful, enjoyable exercise I’ve ever done, I almost always regret it. People don’t really want to go there – to hear that will power can’t always get you through things. It’s terrifying to think, after a life time of doing, doing, doing. So, I find myself greatly censoring conversations to avoid going into that whole realm of explanations and we all have a good time.

It also appears with the standard, societal question, “And what do you do?”
*cringe*

Where’s My (Memory)?

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Fibromyalgia, No Whining

Memory is an extremely problematic thing for me now. Even worse is the typical belief that if it were important enough to me, I would remember whatever it is. I submit the novel notion that I have no choice in what I remember and what is forgotten. It has nothing to do with my adoration or loathing of the subject.

In my great frustration, I glommed on to a new-to-me blog, Chronic Curve, linked by dear friend Andrea, who suffers fro many of the same health challenges as I. The blog is written by someone battling the effects of RA, which I do not have. I have Fibromyalgia. But the similarities in our situations are astonishing and I can’t stop reading the posts. 

So, memory, right. One of the posts has a number of pointers for those dealing with brain fog, fatigue, pain and cognitive problems. In reading it, I believe the tips useful for everyone, particularly those in a place where they must retain knowledge for current income or a diploma (future increased income). The learning techniques are fascinating, and I intend to try to remember to use them and report successes, if any. I’m already working on the Method of Loci to hopefully relieve a social issue of mine that has recently worsened. *fingers crossed*

If you do give it a try, report back? Pretty please?

World Nutella Day is Here *drools*

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Cooking, ExperiMENTAL

First off, let me start by saying, “WTF!?!? Nutella wasn’t in my user dictionary? Suck it, me!”. Now added, I can continue:

Today is World Nutella Day. If you don’t know what Nutella is, don’t fret. It’s simply hazelnuts, ground up until spreadable, like peanut butter, with milk and cocoa added for tasty measure.

My loyal friend, Chaos, ever at my side these days, has prevented me from doing the baking I wanted to do. Playing catch-up on everything that slipped since I have been laid up, means that I can’t bake today. My solution: The jar I bought will just have to fit into my day, however it may. It’s a Holy Day in my calendar, and this year I choose to honor it in restful contemplation. I’ll still experiment, but on a far smaller scale than the previous two years.

I raise my spoonful of Nutella to those who honor this day as I do: By indulging to my heart’s content to this most exquisite gift from what must be from the fairy realms in Belgium.  Ok, so the spoonful didn’t last this long, but I raise it in spirit, my friends.

Enjoy!
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Previous posts from 2011 are viewable here. 
And, apparently, I never blogged about last year’s fun. May have to remedy that soon. I’ve got some pix around here somewhere…