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Seems like I have made enough entries this month. I missed a few days. My goal is too post something everyday. I also try to let you see into my world but more than that clique I try to show you how I am solving problems with schizophrenia but then these solutions work for me. I derive many from known therapy programs like goal oriented recovery and social skills recovery. I have taken workshops on self esteem as well in my early road back from psychosis. I also use a lot of educational therapy which does not mean formal schooling but instead means learning about the illness the therapy educational therapy means to treat.
I think anyone with the schizophrenia label should read something like Fuller Torrey's surviving schizophrenia but also something like the Politics of the Family or the Divided Self. Then reading widely within psychiatry has helped me. These days I read even wider out from this core reading academic books on schizophrenia recovery research and books on disabilites of all kinds.
So though I am worried and anxious about my math course I seem to be able to keep up with this blog under all this stress and also keep up other blogs and my law courses. Hey I am even working a night shift this weekend in a completely different type of work. Well I am going to turn off my computer for an hour now and my TV and read some books.
If there is a psychosis in my future or a more serious level of insanity as my doctors warn me of, I would I think see my present successes stop or at least lessen and my plans start to fall apart. I know some of my activism is falling apart. My school work though is not falling apart. I will admit that perhaps my school work will fall apart this year.
In some ways, I am under more pressure this year than any other years. I have the heaviest course load I have had in 27 years. I also have a very heavy work load in my teaching duties. I think you could follow my progress here a little. You could see my world fall apart.
I have two months of classes to go this term. I have three papers to do in one course and an exam in that course. I have four more assignments and four more lab sessions and then an exam in my math course. And I have to write a draft paper on computer crime by the beginning of the January term.
I have completed 10% of my drug law course and started another 55%. I have started to complete everything but the exam. I have completed 12% of my math course. I have another 4% to do tomorrow and another 8% to complete by next Thursday.
Today I missed my class so I could stay up a little later last night and get a good sleep. I know my mother would say I made the right decision in that I got more sleep. I think I noticed it in my teaching assistant work today as I was able to give a slightly better lab.
I also felt and still feel more relaxed because I took some pressure and expectation off my plate. I have to be careful not to let these duties slide too much. But then perhaps I have taken on too much. I also missed volunteer training yet again tonight. When this happens I focus on the next event in my schedule and getting that done. So tomorrow I need to attend that lab. I use the stronger verb need to describe completing that goal. After all I came back to the world using a goal oriented training recovery within a mileu therapy ward. So getting things done is naturally something that comes up again and again. I could not expect to attend absolutely every class in my math course. It just would not me like me to attend them all especially given that they are early morning classes.
I am working tomorrow at school and have prepared for the work tonight. I have some work to prepare for on Thursday. Then I am working a Saturday overnight shift in my security job. I have two social eveings planned this week. I also plan to grade some assignments later this week.
I have some more victims assistance training on Thursday night. I will be learning an assessment model or process for partner assault. I need to review my training notes some more before the next cycle of training near the end of October.
I have not been volunteering much with the green party. I have not been volunteering much with my radical union. I have some undone tasks to complete with that union. I have been volunteering a lot with my teaching assistant union. We are in bargaining right now. I have not volunteered in the consumer movement today nor will I further volunteer this week unless I work more of a membership survey. I have not volunteered with the folk festival or the city this week although I sent some emails concerning accessibility reports and audits for the city.
I need to get some more web mastering done and might get some done this Thursday afternoon of late evening after training.
I spent about 8 hours at school today. I got to all classes. I spoke up again in both classes. Both the numerical analysis course and the drug law course are going well. In my honors paper course I submitted my research proposal today. I got home and motivated my wife to go shopping. We bought a new coffee table and TV table at Ikea. I spent most of the evening putting those together and putting the stereo equipment together in the new shelfs under the TV. I then spent an hour planning my schedule for the next two weeks and and doing some budgeting.
I volunteered for 12 hours today with a network of consumer groups. We were doing a strategic plan session. I suggest document collection as a task. We ate lunch there. I was out of town. Most of the day was travel. I started to design a survey for the groups to use with their members when I got home, and set an overly ambitous goal of programming an R module for designing surveys. You don't need to know what R is. I helped some of the other volunteer consumers by loaning them a zip drive to transfer files from thier old laptop to a new one. I also loaned them some Fedora Linux CD's. I am the web master at this group. I need to do more work on their web site. I got home and two neighbours knocked on our door. I have an early morning class tomorrow. I volunteered to help a health consultant for this group. I spent a fair amount of time gossipping about other today and that is bad for paranoid people I know. I had a good time today but need to sleep now.
I cleaned up the floor of my office after a long day. The long day including updating my computers which kept me up later then I wanted to be. I also used the other university library in this city today for school work and borrowed a book on medical statistics and there are papers in this book on clinical trials.
C's dad passed away and I talked with her about it on the bus. She said it was expected. I offered to help her where we can.
I got my school work done for the weekend. I got some assignments to mark. I talked breifly with my supervisor in statistics at school this morning. I reviewed my notes from my math class on solving non-linear equations(sound like John Nash?).
I am going to a consumer network meeting tomorrow. I have been building the network's web site for the past week and should be paid for this work.
I got our income report done for the past month and mailed out to the government. I told my mom all my troubles last night. There are some unresolved drugs of abuse questions going on around here. I have been reading a handbook on the medical consequences of alcohol and drugs of abuse. J has been reading it too. I have been studying drug law for about a month now.
I am going to take an extar 1 g of both vitamins and my 6mg of risperadol and hit the sack.
I worked about five hours in my TA job this last week. I also worked for about two hours on my consumer survivor web mastering job. I hope to have a bilingual web site completed by the end of the weekend. I have the web mastering worked all planned and just need to complete the creation of the French web page files and change all the linking. Of course, I need to copy and paste the French from the translator into the new web pages too. My brother also a professional web master has crtiqued my layout on this web site and I spent some time this past week trying to follow his suggestions.
C's father passed away so she and J did not come over tonight. Instead the other two came by. We listened to the new Launchsomething radio on Yahoo mesenger. We played guess that song. I was at school today but didn't really solve my assigned problems very well.
I am expected our friends to come by tonight. I just got in from doing a math lab assignment for my own studies. It was interesting because it concerned error and computer experiment. I am studying more this weekend and staying up tonight until 8 or 9 am Saturday morning. I will help deliver the newspapers in the morning. I have quite a few weeks of newspapers to read too.
I am feeling great now. Right now I just took 1 g of vitamin C and 1 g of niacin so that helps me feel good. But also today I signed some work contracts so my TA work is officially started and this was the first week I ran labs at school. We are broke now and I am behind on reporting income and I have an assignment due tomorrow and a proposal to hand in next week but those problems are manageable and I have no work scheduled for a few days after I give another lab later this afternoon. I was busy yesterday working and volunteering. I got really mad when I had no lunch yesterday but had two dinners last night so things were balanced. I had to wake up this morning early with only 6 hours sleep but got to my class and have still near the end of the month now missed no classes. I have been out of the house for long streaches of time so neglecting my home duties a bit. Meanwhile my wife has been pushing me to get her book reviewed and a reviewer has stepped forward in the consumer community and sounds very positive and wants to help us sell the book of poems. So there is some very positive news for both of us today even with our budget approaching a disaster. I may appeal to someone for financial help given that my math pay will be late. Another thing I feel good about is meeting people and getting along with them such as supervisors at work, fellow disability activists, other scholars and school workers, and also neighbours. I am feeling great and yes the week isn't over yet but today is a good day.
I led a discussion on drugs law history yesterday. This was the faciliation week I will be graded on. The students didn't seem to be too interested in my questions which asked them to compare the laws and law formation in 1908 and 1911 with today's marijuana law reform. The professor though thought they were good questions. I said that the medical marijuana debate was just this decades flavour for a reason to decriminalise. I also critiqued the race aspect of drug laws saying the real darkness was that drug smoking is dirty. I also said that the Victorian women alone drinking her opium was more likely to be alone, isolated and less social, than men talking worldly topics in a circle smoking opium. Well the drug law course is underway now. I also played a radio broadcast of Buck Rogers to get at sinophobia and passed around a printed comic from the Internet featuring Ming the Merciless a typical Chinese villian in Western culture and from Flash Gordon.
I have a very busy Wednesday today. I start my official lab duties in my teaching assistant work today. Right after that I have a meeting for three hours in the afternoon concerning mental health and the government. Then I come back to campus for a union meeting where I must keep minutes on a laptop. Then I can relax and play a role playing game with friends in the evening. Then I must sleep only five hours and wake up for Thursday's morning class. Then right after class I have an appointment with a writing tutor to help me write my fourth year honours paper. Then I have a few hours off until I have lab duties in the late afternoon. I still must meet with the professor of this lab to find out how he wants me to run the lab. I must remember to pick up another SAS license today too and find some time in the next two days to complete my MATLAB homework due early Friday afternoon.
I guess during all this talk of sleep control I had been generally staying up late. Now I am doing the opposite getting to sleep early. I have over the last few weeks tended to sleep early at 4 PM or the like and waking up at midnight or 2 am like today. So taking control of one's sleep really is possible.
I am up today to start my teaching assistant duties. I was going to help deliver the newspaper but will not today. I have been assigned three lab sections in statistics so must concentrate on getting those started.
I gave a a little talk with a handout on the symptoms of withdrawl and apathy and how those effect my school work. This talk for tutors and learning assistants at my school was a part of their training. They fed me lunch.
Before that I searched out readings for my drug law course in the library and photocopied some journal articles and borrowed some books. I got the reading done on the history of Canadian drug laws and have some questions that compare then with now for the class to discuss on Tuesday.
I went to my lab on Friday and got the in lab assignment done and did a great job and was out before most of the other students. This is something that I find about my mind and school work is that I do it quickly. I seem to think very fast and this maybe my schizophrenia or it just maybe my mind.
I am a bit behind on writing my research proposal but have been doing some more thinking about it. I will read on the general techinques for writing a research proposal today. I am just sitting around the union office handing things out this morning and then attending a lab for my teaching assistant work. Then after lunch I will be attending a careers workshop.
Basically I have four courses to study this term. Two are traditional course with classes, assignments and papers but neither are really traditional topics or taught in traditional ways just the schedule and work load is traditional. One other course lasts until April and it has no classes just meetings with a supervisor and I must complete a 60 page research paper by April. The other course I am a teaching assistant for so must follow the course but already know the material having learned it back in 1999 in my own second year statistics course.
I have two jobs besides school. One I work in security and two I am a webmaster for a community health group. So that should be three pay cheque sources this fall besides our government disability cheque. When I earn more from work our disability cheque is smaller. We will also renew our lease this fall for next year.
I kind of dropped out of volunteering in victim's services and need to pick that up again. It would look good on a resume for applying to graduate school in criminology or legal studies and also law school. My other volunteering and work would also look good. I did not attend my union meeting in my main job. Apparently the meeting was only a formality rather than a democracy. I also went out to the volunteer appreciation party and won a folk CD and a beer T-Shirt. I also attended a *meet the union* night and met a successful author who is also a TA at our school. He writes fantasy novels based on role playing games. I did about 16 hours of volunteering this week.
I am just taking 1 gram of vitamin C and niacin. I am getting ready to deliver today's newspaper. I ate a bowl of corn flakes ands banana. My wife has been walking five blocks to the market regularly now for a few weeks. We have a a good supply of fruits and vegetables for about three weeks now. We haven't been to a major grocery store in weeks. We live close to a farmer's market. It will close in about a month and a half around Halloween.
I am feeling good this morning and right on. Once I deal with these guilty feelings and feelings of failure, I will be set for today's training of learning assistants and tutors for the Disabled student's centre.
I woke up this morning at 2 AM the same as yesterday. I had slept for 6 hours. I immediately started to read. With 20 some books borrowed right now I feel like I am behind on reading. Actually I am ahead on reading for one course. I have a little reading for my other two courses. I did a time managment plan with K the disablities counselor and have followed it perfectly so far.
I read widely and am not reading any psychiatry at the moment. I start my new group therapy group in one week and four days.
I met with K my learning assistant and disabilities counselor yesterday morning. She helped me plan my studies schedule for the weekend and next week. This helps me involve professionals in my own planning. I slept at 3 PM yesterday and woke up at 2 AM. I have done some reading on the Opium Act of 1908 and 1911. I will lead a class room discussion on this on Tuesday. The professor seems like a good professor for this drug law course. In my other law course I borrowed an older book on how to write a research proposal and read a little of it this morning. I am about to help deliver the newspaper. I scheduled some work in my main job for an over night shift later in October. Today I am mostly studying mathematics after getting to school but would like to read some guide books on using SAS this morning before going to school. I will be helping to teach SAS next week on Wednesday to business students.
I have been super busy with school work. I have attended both my first classes now. So I have started the study of drug law and must facilitate a discussion in the class next Tuesday on the history of Canadian drug laws. I have attended now two lectures in my numercial analysis course and have begun to use MATLAB and write some of my first assignment due next Friday not this Friday. But this Friday I will have an in lab assignment to do. I also have met to discuss my honours paper with my supervisor. I must now write a research proposal that defines the questions I hope to answer in my paper. My supervisor was telling me that asking the right questions is the most important part of doing research.
I have been trying to settle into working as a teaching assistant but my work schedule keeps changing and I can't be sure what classes I am working in yet. I have also been attending various union meetings and events and have a meeting tomorrow at noon. I might be staying awake until then.
I have meeting with a disabilities coordinator just after class tomorrow. We need to discuss accommodations. I probably won't need any besides help with writing for my law courses. I have been able to negotiate with my math instructor so that should be an ok course.
One problem with sedative medications is waking up on time for appointments. My first solution that I still use is too only make appointments in the afternoon. Another solution is to wake up at 10 PM or 2 AM or sometime like that and then sleep at 4 PM or 6PM. Today I woke up at 7 PM last night I slept at about 9 AM in the morning on Sunday. So Saturday was about a 29 hour day. But now I am well timed for a community meeting this morning and an early morning class Tuesday and Thursday. I have some union volunteering on Wednesday and my first law class on Tuesday. My math class continues this week and I have been hired to be a teaching assistant in one statistics tutorial group. I wanted two groups but one should be ok given I have other work and a lot of studying to do. I did a fair amount of studying on Saturday. This morning I have been printing notes and making notes and investigating a criminology degree for my graduate studies.
Another problem with today's schedule besides my feelings is that I must buy more cat food and the animal hospital is only open on Saturday in the morning. I am just completing my entry here and taking the bus to the hospital to buy her more food. I should be back by 10:30 in about 50 minutes.
I got finally the book that has the required reading for the second week of my drug law course. I started reading it last night. I feel tight and on top of my studies but am also starting to feel insecure about studies. This feeling will probably get bigger and more persistant. I have also been reading my math studies today and yesterday and attended my first class on Thursday. I did not work in the math lab yesterday as planned, because I have been feeling under the weather after Thursday's rain storm.
I have been so busy this week I feel entitled to taking time off volunteering today. We had a big rain storm on Thursday the end of Francis. It was a record rain fall here. This day September 9th was also the day the previous record rain fall was set. I did my union volunteer activities for the week; those all got done except for a one page report.
I am not scheduled for any work in my main job. I did get hired again for being a teaching assistant. I start work perhaps this coming Thursday. I need to email and then meet with my immediate supervisors the professors this coming week. This coming week we also have some union social night and also a union meeting in my main job. But these two events are almost at the same time, and there is also a volunteer appreciation party for the Folk Festival that R and I might go to together scheduled for the same night. That night is also the night of my role playing game and I told my fellow gamers I would not make it.
I have been reading some policing literature and also some vulnerability studies concerning disasters and development. I also attended my math class yesterday and spoke with the professor after class. I started working on the first assignment. I will go in and use the math workstations today to do the rest of the assignment. I should know by the end of Sunday how much work this first assignment will take.
I bought the two law books. As the director of the Writing Tutorial Service said, because these books are being bought not for required textbooks but for help writing my honours year paper (yes, I am proud of being here at this level of school after many years of struggles) these books will be trophies on my shelf.
I also bought a math textbook for my math course in numerical analysis which cost near 150$ for one book. I read the first section of chapter one of this book already and started the practice problems and got the first one right.
Today is the first day of school. I have class at 8:30 but will be on a picket line from about 7:30 to 8:00 showing solidarity and support for the campus support workers like librarians who are in negotiations with the university right now. It is just an info picket. I will get to class early then after class ends at 10:00 I will come home and sleep all day until 5 pm, then it is out for volunteer training in the evening.
It is a dirty business buying school books. They are generally expensive. I compared prices at Amazon.ca and the school's book store and there is no difference except in softcover being available at Amazon. One fellow worker will have 300$ in books for one course. Another sister worker's daughter must pay 1600$ for books for one term in college. I suggested she shop at Chapters as that is what a college student friend does to save money. I am buying Canadian law books today. They are just a basic legal writing citation guide book and a Canadian Criminal Code book. All in all I will spend almost 300$ today to buy school books.
I did decide to sleep today and made the union meeting. I got five hours sleep and will be up until 6 am tomorrow and then heading off to a union BBQ then role playing to relax in the evening.
I can't decide whether to stay up some 33 hours or sleep now. I have been up 18 hours now. I would end up sleeping like 14 hours if I stay up 33, so would wake up at 10 am Wednesday. Staying on the night shift won't work with union activities very well. I really need to be on a day shift today and Wednesday but also need to be on an early morning shift Thursday and a late night shift Wednesday. I also need to be up late on Thursday and afternoon's awake Wednesday and Friday. Yes perhaps I should nap a little today then sleep at 11pm tonight.
Another labour day, another year I am working for time and a half and not participating in the labour day parade. I have to work a night shift tonight. I am up at 2 PM and getting our household supplies together for the rest of the week. Tomorrow night we have a union meeting. I will be sleeping in the day tomorrow. Also tomorrow I find out if I have been hired again as a teaching assistant.
I am out of vitamins again. But we have food and I have my lunch packed for work.
I got R to help me take out a desk and dump it in the garbage. I had originally gotten this desk in the garbage. So I reused it for about a year. I am trying to follow my mom's and wife's advice that we move the third couch we have in the living room. It is an obstacle in the exit path if we need to go on the balcony in the event of a fire. I want to put this other couch in my office, in our second bedroom, so that I have a comfortable place to study and not pile my books on the living room couch, as I am doing this past year now.
My wife watched three movies tonight. I chatted at a support and recovery room. R came over and I showed him all the software I had on my laptop. I also installed two games and gave R older games that won't work on my newer system. R likes computer games but I am no longer such a big fan of these games.
I read the last few week's newspapers and got a lot of them ready for recycling. I studied a bit more of the articles for my drug law course and generally continued to clean up. I think cleaning up is one more thing I need to do to recover.
My latest study topic is policing. I have it seems been studying directly the policing literature for about a month now. In four months I could find my self studying policing in a criminal law issues course at school. That course starts in January 2005. No I don't want to be a police person or professional but the topic is interesting and certainly related to my present work as a security guard and my latest volunteering in victims services. Some studies suggest preventative policing that we security guards do is actually similar to a more humane approach to corrections in that reactive punishment is not practiced but rather harm reduction and rehabilition is the prefered positive outcome.
I am going to attend a weekly group therapy starting on the 29th. It runs every Wednesday in the afternoon. It is at a family service centre only three blocks from our apartment.
Rather than write a long entry about my sleep again I'll just say I am up now for 24 hours and hope to be up another 5 or 6 hours into Saturday morning. I saw my psychiatrist today and disccused this with him. He mentioned the central nervous system and other parts of the body/being working all in parallel with no real causative explainations possible.
Grief needs to be expressed for children heading back to school who didn't make it this year. The crimes in a school terroism incident are chilling me right now. My tears of rage are shed for these poor victims. My going back to school is great this year but some people somewhere in the world will now never have a chance to study because they have been murdered by terrorists. This is sad and the worlds armys should put down there weapons once and for all. I guess, Russia will never survive her military excursions.
I only have one work shift next week on Labour day. I do though have some volunteer union work to do next week both for the Industrial Workers of the World and also for the Canadian Union of Public Employees, then the next week I have a union meeting at the United Food and Commerical Workers Local. But with the UFCW I am not active in the union and only attend the occasional meeting. We do employ a rather expensive office for our representative there and there hasn't been much of chance to volunteer in that union local. The IWW doesn't represent me actually in any of my work directly but is more a general labour movement body and has helped me get back into the working world and know my rights as a worker. This group of people has also helped me stay in touch with activism on the left.
I find out on the 7th if I have been hired again in the mathematics and statistics department at school. The union protection gives me seniority and also my bosses at that work have been impressed with my work ethic as was my volunteer manager at the Folk Festival this past weekend. So, on the 7th I should also be getting my work schedule tentatively for the fall school term. I have my basic class schedule now. That reminds me I need to email the teaching assistant supervisor and let him know my revised class schedule so he can schedule my TA work.
I stayed up until 3 pm yesterday from about 2 or 4 Wednesday. I stayed up to take delivery of both our medications and my Staples order. When I woke at this morning at 12:30 AM I immediately printed the hard copy back up of this blog and my other blogs. My other blogs are about my computers, my Friday night gaming night and my studies. Sometimes when I make entries in this blog I also copy it on my studies blog. And sometimes my studies and computer blog get the same entries. My Cyberpunk gaming blog gets very few entries. I have stopped buying books for that game and we don't actually play the game all the time. I do continue to play Advanced Dungeons and Dragons almost every week.
I was chatting today on the computer in a chat room. I have studied a little of the modern studies on chat rooms. Today in with other stuff someone was finding her life unmanagable because she couldn't set priorities. Today also for me I was thinking that all these longs days might be a mistake. The next few days are not exactly planned too well for sleep. It was like the thinking we do when we first think we are insane. Like the first step in AA that our lives are unmanageable. That thought that our lives are totally upset that our minds might not be right. That we have made a big mistake and there is no help for us. But I have learned there is always help and that this type of thinking is anxious thinking. As one professor said in a first year course don't worry so much it is not the end of the world. We need to pause and think, reflect and relax. I did that this morning re-reading the hard copy of my blogs for August. This time I did not allow my thoughts to get off on tangents with what I wrote before so much. For instance when reading about my new volunteer work in victims services I did not review the training in my mind nor did I pick up my tainining manual. In fact, I was Buddist like and let my mind go blank and just kept reading, breathing all the time.
I did some intense studies on Thursday morning and Wednesday morning and recorded my notes on-line in my public studies blog. I got a fair amount of school work done this week and classes don't even start until the end of next week.
My mom bought me a pair of black walking shoes. I bought us some new cotton blankets. I also bought us some plastic drinking glasses. I bought a tripod for my camera. I also bought some blank CD's and did an end of month back up of my laptop to CD. I also bought a new pair of jeans.