Monthly Archives: August 2013

The Epiphany of Stagnant

psych ward runaway

Disclaimer:  The following post is a bipolar’s depressing realization that life is not and probably will not be what I wish it to be.  So if you don’t feel like reading a downer – please discontinue reading at this point.  Thank you.

Everything is all messed up.  Well, it’s not really – I’m just totally overwhelmed with it all.  Everything.  Jobs, house, money, cars, kids, life in general.  I feel like my head is filled to the brim, maxed out, like there is packing material in my brain pushing on the sides of my skull.  And that everything has swelled as a result.  So all that mess is just pushing on stuff that shouldn’t be pushed on.

I don’t know.  I’m tired.  And hungry.  And the kids won’t leave me alone when I come home.  They want attention-attention-attention and I just want to be left alone.  To do, you know, whatever.  I want to take my clothes off and my shoes off and go to the bathroom and get something to eat and then read a little bit and then make some phone calls or something.

I need to relax.  But I can’t.  And even if they weren’t bothering me, I probably still wouldn’t know what to do.  I’d probably just go to sleep.

I left my cat Ashton with some lady.  I was thinking about that today.  This morning, when I woke up.  It would have made sense if I had dreamed about him or something, but I hadn’t.  I just woke up with him on my mind.  And how he was really sick with his enormous bladder or whatever and how it was going to explode and he would die.  And that maybe instead of giving him away to some unknowing alcoholic lady, how I should have probably put him to sleep instead, since I wasn’t willing to pay for the surgery and all of that.  But I didn’t.  I gave him to a poor, alcoholic lady who probably just let him lose in her yard and maybe he crawled under something and just died.  I don’t know.  

My eyes hurt.  I’ve been reading too much.  I’m reading this book right now about these four people who wanted to kill themselves, so they all went up to the roof of this building on New Years Eve and they ran into each other.  Then they became friends who kind of kept each other alive.  And now I’m almost to the end and no one has killed themselves and I guess that is a good thing.  Or at least that’s what they are getting around to right now, at the spot that I am reading.  There are only a few pages left, so I suppose they will come to some sort of conclusion about that.  Or maybe not.

This post went on to talk about alot of other things.  Like my house search and the way that I worry constantly and how if I wasn’t worrying about one thing, I’d be worrying about another.  Then, it continues…

So whatever.  Maybe they all see it and maybe I see it, too.  That I’m not who I was.  And it’s not like when someone changes for the better and they have learned shit about themselves and they’ve matured or whatever.  I’m just stagnant.  

Hey, that’s a perfect word for what I am now.  Stagnant.  And the definition of stagnant that I just googled is: having no current or flow and often having an unpleasant smell as a consequence.  A “stagnant ditch” it says.  And worse yet is the actual definition in the Merriam-Webster version:  not advancing or developing.  And worse yet than even that is this:  “What made you want to look up stagnant? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).”  What could I say?  “I wanted to look up the word stagnant because it so perfectly describes my life at this point and probably the future until I die.”

So there.  I’ve come to some meaningful conclusion about my life.  My life for the past 10 years.  A stagnant ditch.  That’s what my life has been and currently is and will be for the next ten years and the next ten years after that, also.  Good.  That’s an accurate assessment.  It might not be positive, but at least it’s a conclusion of some sort.

In my last therapy session, I again reflected on the fact that I am currently stable.  And I felt cheated.  Is that all my life is going to be?  Just STABLE.  That’s all I can really aspire to – that I remain stable until I eventually die.  Because the opposite would be that I become UN-stable.  And that causes too much aggravation for everyone, including myself.

But maybe it’d be nice to be unstable for a while.  Just for something interesting, just for the purpose of excitement, something happening, something occuring to me.  Something to occupy me for a while, something more than “a stagnant ditch.”

 

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Nauseous and Happy

Today was a weird day.  I felt very nauseous and a little spaced out.  I felt really hyper this morning, like my mind was going a mile a minute.  Then later in the day, I felt absolutely exhausted.

That happens to me occasionally when my bipolar-ness is kicking in.  I think that may have been what was going on.  Just something to keep track of – I think about how everything spun out of control before my last episode.  I don’t want to go back there.

Life is pretty good right now.  My husband and I are both working, and we are talking about finding a house to buy.  Something with a garage and enough space for the boys.  We’d really like a yard.  With grass.

Kareem starts school next month.  We are going to stay in this area – we have decided that already.  Things are looking up, and I feel satisfied with where I’m at.  Tonight, I’m going to go to bed and in the morning it will be Friday and then I’ll have the weekend to watch movies, hang out with the boys, and catch Breaking Bad on Sunday.

There is more junk on my mind that I want to write about, but it is late and I have to go to sleep.  Good night.

Life Goes On Around a Firepit

campfire

We placed the rusty steel ring atop the stones in the driveway.  We filled it with split wood, one piece at a time.  We rounded up some lawn chairs and lined them up in a circle.  Then, we lit the fire.

My sisters came back home and everyone gathered.  My cousin arrived.  The sky grew dark as the colors of the sunset faded into a black, starry night.  As the wood collapsed onto itself, we added fresh wood to it, keeping the flames alive and the red coals burning.

We told our childhood stories.  About getting in trouble, sneaking out, skipping school, and playing games in the yard.  We laughed all together, a chorus of laughter with the same tone and same pitch.  We spent time together, all of us reminiscing about days gone by.

Grama’s memory stays with us.  The finality of the funeral weighs on us.  But life continued and there is hope.  We found strength in each other.

Sleepy Kitten

And now here’s a picture of a kitten – cause I need a break and something to smile at!

Kitten

Being Muslim

Is.lam

I sobbed.  I cried like a baby – short, quick, gaspy breaths in between tears and tears and more tears.  I don’t even know what I was sobbing for.  I cried because I didn’t want to cry.  I cried because I felt like I should be strong and sober and stoic during this time.  My grama died 2 days ago.  I cried and then cried some more because I felt like crying meant my faith wasn’t strong enough.

See, as the only Muslim in my family, I felt I had to be some kind of grounded, religious leader to my sisters.  I felt that being a Muslim meant that you understand the natural cycle of death, that having the knowledge and grasping the concept of the temporary nature of life on earth meant that you were able to accept death and not be affected by it.

I didn’t want to believe that I, too, need to grieve.

So, it came upon me yesterday and I just broke.  I told my husband all of the turmoil I was going through inside my head and my heart.  He listened and he shared his experiences with death in his family and the mourning and grief that everyone goes through, no matter what your religion is.

Yesterday and today it rained all day.  I felt like Allah was softening up the ground for Grama’s burial for us.  I know it might not be my place to be concerned about how Grama is experiencing death, but I know how she experienced life, so in that respect, I pray Allah will give her peace and comfort during this time.

I also thought about how Grama raised my dad and aunt and uncle to believe in God, to have a strong faith, and to pray.  They used to say the rosary together every night during lent, all together, as a family.  That is some powerful stuff.  I feel blessed to have been raised in a family that has a deep, passionate love for God and to have that love instilled in myself.  If it wasn’t for Grama, I might have never reached the path to Islam.

Dealing with Death

There was a kid that I liked when I was young.  I always hoped I would run into him again so I could see him and he could see me.  I heard stories about him and I wondered when it would happen.  It never did happen and he died.  I didn’t even know about the funeral.  It’s so strange to think that that person just isn’t on this earth anymore, that he’s just gone for good.

And now my grama is added to that category.  The gone-for-good category.  She’s just a body now, just the shell that we walk around in.  Her heart is no longer beating, it’s just a decaying thing under her ribs.  And after a while of being six feet under the ground, her skin is just going to rot and fall off of her bones and her face and her skull will be all that is left, just a skull and some unrecognizable bones and the only way you will even know that they are her bones will be the tombstone above her.  Cause her soul is gone now.  Her brain is just a chunk of meat – no more synapses or chemical reactions or whatever the hell goes on in the brain when she was alive.

And she was alive, just yesterday in fact.  She was alive, breathing, heart beating, pumping blood through her veins, thinking, talking, swallowing, moving.  And then, she wasn’t.  She left.  She is gone.  And sometimes, I don’t know how to conceptualize that.  When I was Catholic, I could just believe that the person went to Heaven.  I could tell my kids, “Grama is in Heaven now.”  And I might even believe that she could see us from where she was in Heaven, “looking down on us” and smiling.

But in Islam, it’s not like that. And I really don’t know how to feel about Grama going to the other side and her soul being removed from her body either painfully or comfortably (one or the other based on her actions and beliefs on earth) and I really don’t know how to feel about her being questioned in the grave, and I really don’t know how to feel about the grave either closing in on her to the point of feeling suffocated or having lots of spacious room and being able to feel good and warm and comfortable.

So, in short, I have learned all about what happens to our bodies and our souls, but I don’t know how I should FEEL about it all.

After searching for some answers, I came across the article Thoughts on Death on MuslimMatters.org that offered me some comfort.  I think the biggest thing for me is that I need to look to Allah for help.  I need some comfort, some stability, something to hold onto, something to lean on.  And I know that is what Allah is there for.  He wants us to lean on Him.

They Like Me! They Really Like Me!

Best Moment Award

Best-Moment-Award

Awarding the people who live in the moment,

The noble who write and capture the best in life,

The bold who reminded us what really mattered –

Savoring the experience of quality time.

ACCEPTANCE SPEECH

Misty Rennquist over at http://mistyrennquist.wordpress.com/  has graciously awarded me with the “Best Moment Award” of which I humbly accept.  She is a fantastic blogger and I feel honored that she recognized my own blog in the acceptance of her award.

I read so many other blogs and I think to myself – wow, how powerful their words are, how meaningful their topics are, how insightful their conclusions are.  Winning this award validates that I, too, have affected someone else with my writing.

First knock:  When I was in middle school, I wrote a book of poetry for an english project.  My English teacher pulled me aside after school and asked me if I had really written it.  Of course I had written it, I was shocked he’d even think to ask me that.  He pointed out that the poetry was so good, he just couldn’t believe a 6th grader had written it. 

Second knock:  My English 101 professor brought me into his office and sat across from me behind his big oak wood desk and said – “You should pursue writing as a career.”  The thought in my head was, ‘aww, that’s flattering!  But nobody really DOES writing for a CAREER.’

I blew off these praises of my writing, because I didn’t believe in my writing.  I didn’t believe in the power of my own words.  Now that I’ve been blogging for five years – I’m starting to believe in myself.  The acceptance of this award is my third knock.  Maybe soon I will start listening.

RULES:

Winners re-post this completely with their acceptance speech. This could be written or video recorded.

Winners have the privilege of awarding the next awardees! The re-post should include a NEW set of people/blogs worthy of the award; and winners notify them the great news.

RESOURCES:

  • What makes a good acceptance speech?
    • Gratitude. Thank the people who helped you along the way
    • Humor. Keep us entertained and smiling
    • Inspiration. Make your story touch our lives
  • Get an idea from the great acceptance speeches, compiled inMomentMatters.com/Speech
  • Display the award’s badge on your blog/website, downloadable inMomentMatters.com/Award

THE WINNER OF THE BEST MOMENT AWARD IS:

http://spill-beans.blogspot.com/ 

This blogger touches my heart with every post.  She always has an interesting, inspiring story to share, combined with excellent writing.  And she makes you laugh, too!  So I’m passing the award on to her – she deserves it most.

 

Thank you to everyone who made this post possible, especially Misty at LoveProtection.