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I just returned from the psych and he seems to think that I am actually bipolar (again). Can you dig it? Maybe in 6 months they will give me a new title. Anyhow he gave me a drug for thyroid called Lev something or other (I can't read the writing). So I am excited that I get something to improve my energy level. Also if I lose 40-50 pounds I would be quite alright. My dr. was not thrilled with my adjustments to my meds. He says to take the Abilify and the Lexapro in the morning.
I met my boyfriend Victor's five year old daughter over the weekend and it went quite well. She liked it at my house and stayed over Saturday night. We went to The Getty Center together. Maybe I will get to see her again this weekend.
I still have not received the letter from LAUSD yet. I can't wait.
I finally got a good haircut. The lady told me to just let the color grow out because she likes my natural color. I had damaged it by coloring it.
We can't really move yet because we are not working. Well Victor only works 2 days per week. I work 2 hours per week.
My step-mom is having heart complications following her hip replacement surgery. I will most likely wait to see my family until summer; but I may want to go sooner. My mom's partner is losing her father. He is receiving hospice now in The virgin Islands. My Grandpa is depressed in Arkansas. We lost my Grandma a few years ago and he lives way out on a farm by himself.
My penpal in Las Vegas (Lester) sent me some really good ginger tea. It is Chinese I think. He is coming to L.A. on February 14. He says he wants to come to my meeting that day.
I had eight people at my meeting last night. I felt it was a downer because a couple was kind of giving jabs at each other in the meeting. Maybe that is just my general feeling these days.
I went to the library and checked out a buch of cool stuff including some opera by Andrea Bocelli. I also got a yoga videotape, a dancing videotape, a video on mammals and the book Stella Luna for Athena (Victor's girl).
Tomorrow is Starbuck's with Fardin at 11:00. We will get high on caffeine and illogic.
My supervisor and I are speaking again. We happen to be best friends. It was all a misunderstanding. I do that sometimes with my friends. I think something has gone wrong and in fact everything is fine.
I have thought of publishing some of my blogs in a book. It is all pretty crazy stuff. Mostly just drama though maybe.
Wednesday I went to my job interview. I felt it went well but I will not know until they mail me a letter about it. I can't wait to work again.
I had my meeting on Tuesday evening and a father and son came to it. The son was maybe 11 or so. They were inquiring about the boy's mom. She is bipolar and she refuses medication. So she is jeapordizing her family by doing all of these strange behaviors. She is distressing her children. The county department of social services is in the picture now. One member gave the father advice on how to commit her to a hospital. The dad is in denial. He is afraid of repurcussions from his wife if he puts her on a 72 hour hold. After the other member left the meeting I gave him a piece of my story so that he could see that we appreciate being put out of our misery when we are psychotic. Not at first, but later on. I also referred him to an alliance for the mentally ill meeting where he can learn the mechanics of placing someone on a 72 hour hold straight from parents and others who have been on the other side of the situation.
I went to see a dvd with my friend Annie at her board and care. It is a huge facility. Four of us watched Anchorman and I didn't care for it. They liked it though. She has a bully at her village and I think I must report it.
I had a few people over on Monday for tamale pie. My mom and two of my friends came.
I decided to take 9 units at a community college in Spring. It starts on February 6. I will take child development (the child in a diverse society), lit. for school age children, yoga, and cooperative education. Cooperative education allows me to earn 4 units while working. I must create 3 objectives at work with a supervisor and then at the end of the semester the supervisor will give me a grade on my objectives. I might need to start volunteering in order to start that class so that I can enroll in it before the second week of the semester. Volunteer work counts toward credit also.
On Thursdays my friend Fardin and I have been meeting at my house for coffee but this week I ran out of coffee and so we went to Starbuck's instead. We like to discuss religion and philosophy. Sometimes we discuss medication and therapeutic activities too. I really enjoy my time with him.
On Thursday afternoon I reported to Social Security to turn in my paperwork as they had requested me to do. I just had to list my case again. They ask for your daily activities and if you have worked or been in a department of rehabilitation program. The worker who took my papers was a snit. She really had an attitude. She has no business providing services to disabled people.
I might get to go to the Getty Museum tomorrow. They have a couple of interesting looking photo exhibits which end this weekend. On Sunday my friend Tish will come for a piece of tamale pie and later Henry will come so that I can help him with paperwork. Last we spoke he was dragging his feet about calling jewish vocational services.
My friend is getting to move to a new section 8 apartment. She had been living in a nice apartment; but needs to move because they are dealing drugs by her apartment and there is constant police activity there. I hope I find a decent apartment soon. I might get to see one in a nice area tomorrow that has a fairly low rent compared to others in Los Angeles. I reported that I would be moving in March and the manager said that she would give me a thirty day notice on February 1. I guess they are to the letter here on their policies. I hope that if we have not gathered enough paystubs by then that they are a teeny bit flexible with us.
Next weekend I have the advisory board where I get paid. I can't wait to get paid. I want to shop on Sunday. The strange thing is my boss isn't speaking to me anymore. She and I used to be good friends; but now things are tense. She can't really handle the fact that my diagnosis is not the same as hers anymore (amongst other issues).
Victor is starting his job slowly since they have not given him many hours yet. He is waiting for his fbi clearance. He is working in the office until they can give him a security assignment. He is taking a real estate course at night.
I am a little nervous about the transit system here because of the Bin Laden threat. I think that this is the perfect opportunity for us to exit the war in Iraq. Also, they are threatening to kill a Christian Science Monitor reporter in Iraq if the Iraqi women prisoners are not released soon. The military is playing with this young lady's life by stating that the women won't be released until next week. We (the U.S. government) is trying not to look foolish or weak; but the time for posturing has ended.
I have been doing great lately. I haven't had pain in almost one month. I am only complaining of a little boredom. I will soon get to interview for the special ed trainee position with the school district. It is for a permanent position. The interview is next Wednesday. I was actually supposed to have interviewed for a position as a group home counselor working with severely emotionally disturbed people today; but since I got the letter two days ago that I have the interview next week I decided to not go to today's interview. A couple of days ago I applied online for a job as an instructional assistant in lanuage arts with the community colleges which pays a little more because it is a full time job instead of just 30 hours per week.
The Ups and Downs meeting went well last night. We had nine people. One of my friends who I had expected didn't come so I will call him next week to see if he can come then. I will be assisting one member in filling out his forms for dept. of rehabilitation. They require him to give a list of skills and his duties on previous jobs. He is having trouble doing that due to his learning disability. We are meeting here on the 29th to compile his list. I told him that rehab does not really like serving mental health consumers. They might agree to give you services; but then they don't know how to serve you. Or perhaps they just prefer serving those with a physical (visible) disability. The services which need to be rendered are more obvious. They have done nothing for me both times I have sought services from them. I referred him to Jewish Vocational Services because I saw that they offer a vocational training program for disabled people and the offer job coaches. They have a program called coffee cart (I think) and it trains for a variety of jobs.
I had a dream last night in which I was told that I should complete my B.A. and then get my masters in Spanish. Then as I was waking up from it I was dancing with a group of people to a song by The Temptations. Or maybe it was another song from that era. I always awake to a song. So I awoke invigorated and thrilled at the possibility of becoming fluent in a Spanish. I have this fantasy that I will one day go teach English in Mexico.
I stopped the the Lamictal. I had reduced it by 100 mg. for one month and then now I am on zip. My therapist was a little nervous about it when I told her; but my Dr. couldn't see me a week ago on our appointed day so I adjusted it myself. I refuse to be intoxicated every morning. I wake up very sedated. I still take lexapro and abilify. I take two other medicines for another condition also. I want to cease the abilify next month. My Dr will see me on the 27th of January. I will fill him in. I am currently taking 15 mg of that and I'd like to see if I can rid myself of the horrible pain in my jaw that the drug causes. Today I had a migraine because of that. I can't even be sure that the pain will ever go away. It is worth a try. I am also eager to see if I will wake up more lucid with fewer drugs in my system. My Dr. has told me that the drugs don't cause stomach upset or sedation; but those who take them know differently. I will continue the lexapro because I know I don't want to go without that one.
Because I have been walking more lately I have lost 10 pounds. I am thrilled about that.
I saw Chicken Little at the $2 theater and I thought it was just so-so. It really is intended for little kids though. There was some bullying and there were a lot of fat jokes.
I am due to go defend my case to Social Security next Thursday. I am really on the brink of losing it due to work; but I need to maintain it until I get my benefits. I have no other income or source of medical care currently.
I haven't gone to my friend's village yet to see the dvd. I will go on Friday. I haven't had much spare cash lately and taking the bus is a struggle at $3.00 for an all day pass. She lives quite far from me. I will combine the trip to see her with an appointment for a t.b test. I went to take a t.b. test for work on Monday and didn't have $5.00 to pay for it. Medi-Cal doesn't cover that. I figure they should because I will save the state a lot of money when I get a job and go off of my benefits. So anyway my mobility and social activity has been limited by my lack of income.
I would really love to pursue crafts such as soap and candle making. I have wanted to do this for a while; but a lack of funds has kept me from it. My step-mom says she wants peppermint soap when I make some.
My friend is having trouble at work with sexual harrassment. She reported it and now doesn't want to follow through on the proceedings. She doesn't want to see anyone fired over the matter. She also feels attacked and penalized for having had reported it. She feels bullied right now. They are attempting to force her to follow through. It is a little messy.
I am trying to arrange to attend group activities with this group I joined called Link Up. They have it in different cities. Here it is called L.A. Link Up. People apply to join and then are allowed to go to an event another member creates such as seeing a play together or hiking together. Also, they have a photo group where you are given an assignment and then you shoot that assignment. This time the assignment is Reflections. That sounds fun. Some other fun events offered was a crafting party and a game night with chili both held at private homes. I am trying to coordinate with my friend so we can attend one event together. When I have more money I will have more freedom to do what I want.
I did not have a new years eve party like I thought I would. I really could not afford one and I didn't like last years party where people turned on the t.v. to watch the apple drop in New York. That is boring and depressing.
I will call tomorrow and go to the school district classified office so that I can apply for a sub position. I don't think it will be long before I am working.
I am still running the meeting on Tuesday night. I will have six or so people tomorrow night. It is a lot of fun.
I actually paid the rent on time this month. We are looking for a two bedroom apartment nearby. We saw one today for 1,050. It is old; but has large rooms and hardwood floors. We must wait to get some pay stubs though. I think we will be moving at the latest by March. Victor, my boyfriend, just got three jobs. He started the training for the security job last week. He gets paid monthly and so we must wait to move.
Tomorrow I am going to get my hair cut and maybe colored blond. Between 9 and 12 they have a sale at this thrift shop near the beauty school; so I will go there first.
Friday I am going to visit an old friend at her board and care. We are going to watch a dvd I got for Christmas. I am concerned about her not getting healthy snacks between meals because she is diabetic. On Wednesday my friend Fardin will come have coffee with me here. I convinced him to attend the Tuesday night meeting. I called my friend Ken last night to invite him too.
I read about a good program where they team up mental health consumers with personal trainers to help people lose weight and become healthy. They work on shopping for food and cooking too.
Another article I read in The Los Angeles Times said that there is an organization in Culver City, CA. which allows people with autism, retardation and learning difficuties to earn a living as artists. They create paintings, silk patchwork pillows,painted birdhouses, mixed media works, ceramic platters, aprons, pillow slips, and baby blankets. I was thinking that this would be a good program for the mentally ill population as well. It would reduce or end dependancy on welfare. There may be other art forms that consumers are talented at which they could profit from.
I also was reading about soldiers returning from wars who are suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and are getting no counseling or medication to help them. I think that is criminal. In particular, the California National Guard which was deployed in Iraq is returning to find no services in place to meet their needs. They are only supposed to be called to help in case of a domestic natural
disaster and they are getting treated like second class citizens. The delay in treatment is leading to domestic violence and sometimes even suicide.
I saw Pride and Prejudice and it was very good. I also saw Mr. and Mrs. Smith and I didn't care for it. I rented Millions because I just had to see it again.
I don't know if I mentioned that my dad had gastric bypass surgery. Apparently he has lost 30 pounds or so since the surgery on December 7th. My stepmom will have hip replacement on January 9th.
My mom is still moving to Texas for a while beginning in June or July. My mom is healthy at age 62. I am thankful for that.