figured something out????

When I first started this blog, I had no idea what to do or where to go with it.  All I knew was that I felt better when I wrote shit down.

Here we are roughly 6 months later….

  1. I have taken blogging101
  2. writing101 came next
  3. then Photo101
  4. then Life got in the way

I became obsessive over completing Blogging101.  See my history and you might understand why.  I learned so much from this course.  I was wicked new to blogging and I was learning stuff that a woman of my age should know.   widgets, image widgets, feature, Know your audience, INSPIRATION…. COMMUNITY!!!!

I did not expect or have any clue that starting a blog came with such a fantastic community.  I am very grateful I was led to WordPress.  Yes Lily Pup you are to blame for that.

After Blogging101 came Writing101.  I am proud to say I did well with this class.  The obsession I had during Blogging101 was not present.  Damnitall.  I read a blog post recently where the writer talks about swearing, I’ve been swearing ever since.  It is part of my Distinct Voice, which I also learned about in writing101. I learned so much more than I could have ever anticipated.

Writing 101 is where I received my first bit of criticism.  Maybe it was Blogging 101? It truly does not matter now.  The assignment was to write about your home.  I requested constructive criticism and I got it.  It basically said, “show me, Don’t tell me.”  Funny how one of the very next assignments was “Show me, Don’t tell me.” 

Russell J. Fellows on April 8, 2015 at 8:56 am said:

What a peaceful sounding place. I think I’ve told many people the same thing, but I want to tell you also: be more immersive in this writing. You have a lot of good description to work with, but I want to experience it through your eyes, not just through you telling me what is what. Instead of “The entrance to where I am is like a dirt road that leads you through a tunnel…” say “A road of dirt and rock leads you through a tunnel of beeches and oaks to a clearing…” or something like that. Does that make sense?

Then came Photo 101. Another great WordPress offering. I have yet to finish this course, but I have many great excuses. Life stuff took over for a while and I was unable to keep focused on learning about photography.  I still have hopes to finish this class, but will do so in my own time.

I have also been unable to keep up with my weekly feature OTT.  I have decided none of this matters.  What matters is that Today, I am doing every thing in my power to be okay.  My goal today and every day is to beat depression.  When my head tells me I am better off staying in my pajamas, I get in my clothes and do something.  When it tells me, “you don’t need a shower today”, I go out, get extra dirty, have fun doing it, and have no choice but to shower.  When someone who counts asks me How I am, I tell them the truth.  I have chosen to take the word “FINE” out of my vocabulary.

When my therapist suggested I leave little notes around my house that simply say “BREATHE”, I listened.  Now my house has little notes everywhere reminding me to breathe.  Breathing is such a simple thing to do, yet so very difficult when I need it most.  I have also learned along the way that deep breathing helps with so much more than just anxiety.  Provided I remember to do it.  The more I do it the easier it is to remember.  Everything takes practice.

So, take a minute. Stop. Just breathe. and don’t forget your blog

Duh. I almost forgot to mention what it was I may have figured out?  If blogging has rules, I do not think I can follow them. I am okay with suggestions, but I don’t believe I have any hope with rules. It has been 6 months and I still do not know what this thing is about.  I am okay with that.

Are Ya Ready for Tomorrow????

Obsessive Thought Soup ====
Start with Numerous Random Thoughts
Add 4 dashes of Fear and Worry
Stir 16 times
Let simmer for exactly 64 minutes
Breathe and Let it Go
REPEAT

I’ve been Wicked obsessing again.  I can’t really focus on random obsessive thoughts today because it is so much more than just thoughts right now.  My brain feels like a family size pot of Obsessive Thought Soup, anxiously simmering on the wood stove. OTS should not be confused with LPS or Llama Poop Soup which in itself can be obsessive, but is a completely different kind of soup.

Okay, my most prevalent recent obsessions are as follows….

  • obsessing over never having finished Photo101.  Life got in the way of that and it was put on the back burner.
  • Obsessing over last weeks Photo Challenge (Close-Ups if you missed it).
  • Obsessing over this
  • that
  • all those other things.
  • And now I am Obsessing over how many cooking references I can accidentally have in one post.

I tried sitting with the thoughts and letting them go. I tried distraction as a way to rid myself of these thoughts. Old negative coping techniques no longer work so I shall not even go there.  I could verbally rant, but I don’t feel like bothering anyone else with my batshitcrazy way of thinking right now. Maybe if I take each named obsession one by one and rant a bit, they will lessen.  If I do this right, I should be able to rid myself of these obsessive thoughts, complete Obsessive Thought Thursday (maybe a day early even), do some work on Photo101, and release from my mind the other close-ups I’ve been obsessing over.

I do believe I am feeling an increase in anxiety which may be causing an increase in obsessive thoughts which definitely is causing more anxiety which leads to compulsions…………….OR did the obsessive thoughts start first which led to the elevation of anxiety which led to more obsessive thoughts which in turn led to compulsions……………All I know is I am obsessing.  Other coping skills did not work, so right now I am attempting to rant them away by writing. I shall write those obsessions right out of me. Write and rant about obsessions in order to rid myself of those same obsessions. Is this making sense to anyone???? I think I may have confused even myself.  I refuse to add to the anxiety by starting to obsess over the # of times I just wrote “right” and “write” or obsess over those run-on sentences I let stay.

Ah, I just took a break for breathing.  Breaks for deep breaths are good AND I completely forget about them almost all of the time.  How come the stuff that is the best for me when I obsess and feel anxiety are the last things I remember to try?  If I didn’t mind bothering other human beings, the very 1st thing they would have told me to do is BREATHE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Each and Every One of them would have said in a firm, yet tender voice, STOP and BREATHE!!!! and not in a loud voice either.  I have been doing very well with firm, yet tender prompts. “No, buts, just STOP and BREATHE.” They may have to repeat it. And possibly repeat it again, but it helps.

Close-Up of Toad that kept jumping out at me

Close-Up of Toad
that kept jumping
out at me

Time to stop ranting and writing and hit save.  This breathing thing is calming me down.  I am obsessing less and think that I just might be able to stop writing for now and maybe eat supper. Who cares when I finish Photo101?  I can’t just pull photo’s out of my ass, I mean hat, to match the subject of the assignment in the order they are assigned. Look at this past weeks weekly challenge.  It just happened to be close-ups.  To start, I went looking for close-ups. After I published my 1st attempt, close-up opportunities kept popping up everywhere. Inspiration can come from anywhere.

Day Seven of Photo101 Big & Point of View.  Ah screw it.  I am feeling better. Less obsessive, and no anxiety. I am no longer obsessing over finishing Photo101.  I also did tomorrow’s regular weekly feature today. So that leaves time open tomorrow to work on last months Photo101 assignments. and I forgot my 5:32 PM Ativan again.  So here’s to Obsessing or to Not obsessing.  I much prefer not.

I totally forgot again

I have managed to find someone other than myself to blame for my inability to get my weekly feature published on time.

My husband is to blame.  He has had an extra day off each week this summer which totally messes up what day I think it is.  Therefore it is his fault I cannot write about obsessive thoughts on Obsessive Thought Thursday. I do not know when Thursday is.

So glad we got that squared away from the beginning.  I continue to challenge OCD in some way every day. The more I challenge it, the more I reinforce the fact that it is okay to do something once. The more times I eat three skittlesimage at a time instead of four or 2 cookies instead of four, and nothing bad happens, the more I believe nothing bad will happen.  The more times I successfully challenge this disorder, the stronger I feel. And No, not every challenge is a successful one. Twice recently while in a store, I had an incredible increase in anxiety which was directly related to an opportunity to challenge the OCD.  I felt it in my body, just like my new Therapist wants me to.  I can hear him now, “What does it feel like?”     “Easy, It feels like I am going to puke.”

We have been experiencing a lot of ‘firsts’ the last few weeks and I am happy to note that in no way could I make them into fourths. It was stuff like the 1st time you peel and cut up potatoes without saving some pieces for the beagle. The 1st time you forget your water when leaving the house and realize you can go back in without disturbing the dog. There is no dog. The first time you cook and realize there is no dog to step over no matter where you move.  The first time you sit in your dog’s favorite spot on the loveseat and realize just howMattNoMoreFirstsWords comfortable it really is.  The first time you have sirloin tips for supper and realize there is no one to share the juice with. The 1st time your husband leaves when the dog would normally ‘think’ he shouldn’t and you both realize he doesn’t have to sneak out of the house anymore. The 2nd time you sit in your dog’s spot on the loveseat, only this time you recline back, totally enjoying how comfortable you truly are and think, “that little shit has had the best spot in the house for 15 years, and I can see the TV better from over here.” Done with firsts for now.

Okay, O.T.T., obsessive thoughts, Thursday, No its Sunday, Obsessiveness, you started this Saturday…. Lately, I have found myself obsessing over depression.  I have been obsessing over being aware that the depression may or may not be trying to get back in control of my head. I am obsessing over doing everything I can possibly do to stop the depression from taking over my brain. I am thinking this might not be a bad obsession.

Because I am constantly on the look out for signs that depression may be returning, I see the signs rather quickly. I see them before they can get a hold on me.  I can then do what I need to do to prevent it from getting worse.

For example, I have been neglecting my blog.  I enjoy my blog, I have fun with my blog.  The more I neglect my blog, the less joy and fun I have and the easier it is for depression to strengthen itself inside me.  There is more room for it to grow.

Sometimes depression tries to sneak up on me in other ways.DepressionStronger  It likes it when I feel irritable and get snippy with my partner.  I know this, I am aware of this, I can apologize for this and not do it again. Depression hates it when I do this, it loses power. One thing depression loves is alcohol.  If I have to do something that makes me extremely anxious it wants to convince me that it will be easier to do with a drink. It will be better with a  drink.  To someone with a history of depression, alcohol is just FFD (Fuel For Depression). Depression lies. It lies to me all the time. You don’t need to eat today. You will only get fatter.  Eat tomorrow. Depression wants to be that gut wrenching, motivation sucking, all-consuming monster it has been in the past.  And if that means lying to me, that means lying to me.

Today is different though.  I have had time away from that major, debilitating, dark depression. I like to think I have used that time wisely.  I have been able to work on ‘other stuff’.  I have learned how to get through some incredibly anxiety provoking situations unscathed.  I have learned and am still learning that unpleasant feelings just are. Everyone has them.feelingsEmotions  If I feel them and let them be, they will change or leave altogether. The more I fight unpleasant feelings, the stronger they become. Which opens the door for depression.  I need to allow myself to feel stuff like fear, or sadness, or even anger. That way when I feel things like joy, peace, and happiness, I will enjoy them that much more.

I do not know where I am going with this story and I barely know where I’ve been, so my suggestion to Myself is to end it here.

THE END

Day Thirteen: Moment & Motion

I had to suffer and sit outside for a very long time to capture these.  It was a horribly, beautiful, sunny, summer day, but I suffered through it.  All just to capture some motion. It was time well spent.

cheating a bit today

Day Eleven of Photo101: A Pop of Color and Last Thursdays OTT

Life has gotten in my way recently. I am trying to get myself back into this Blogging thing. Also, I missed O.T.T. again last Thursday. I did think about it. I just didn’t do it. I am also wicked far behind in Photo101.

So today, Monday, I am going to combine O.T.T. with photo101.  I am going to challenge my OCD by getting back into my assignments, but I will mix things up a bit and do the assignments out-of-order. I obsessed a bit when taking pictures of this Pop of Color I found. A bit more when it came time to edit.  But, It was not to the point that I felt out of control. Just some minor anxiety that was easily managed.

This is progress.  The big test will be whether I can stick with doing the assignments out-of-order. Please note that there are 3 pictures.  Not 4 (down from 8).  This is a big deal to someone with my kind of OCD.

Now that I think about it, had I ventured down to the water I could have taken care of Day Seven: Big & Point of View as well.  Next time I will go to the bottom of the dam and look up.

 

I missed O.T.T. again

I have done it again.  Or not done it depending on how you look at it.  I have been 100% distracted by life this past week or so. I thought about writing my Feature yesterday, but chose to lay down on my couch and rest instead. I have even neglected Photot101 as well.  I hope to catch up with that this weekend.

What has me so distracted that I am neglecting my blog, You ask?  I have been taking notes for a future story I may or may not write.  That story might be about euthanasia.  I only have notes so far, so i do not know where the story will lead me.  I have experienced euthanasia 3 times.  The first time I barely remember.  The second time upset me. It is the third time I may write about.  The third time was so very different from the first two.

So this is all you get for my Fridays version of Obsessive Thought Thursday. I am so very sorry I could not get you to laugh today.

This picture was originally published in Serenity Found Me, but it works so well for todays post.

solitude and peace Goodnight Sweet Prince.  I know longer have to worry about you.

solitude and peace
Goodnight Sweet Prince. I no longer have to worry about you.

Photo101 day3 just say water

Day Three: water and orientation.

vertical >>>>

vertical >>>>

“I’ve got plenty of water. wonder what they mean by orientation?” 

How will you interpret this theme???? How can you tell a story with

water???? 

horizontally or vertically????

“sounds like I get to decide???? Well, I went absolutely batshitcrazy with this assignment..”

After you snap your picture, rotate your camera and take a shot from the other orientation — horizontally if you first took the picture vertically, and vice versa.

“Yes, I went A.A.T.N. absolutely almost totally nuts. Remember, I have a camera we bought 4 months ago. I’ve been practicing with it a lot lately so,  I pretty much know how it works.  Then Monday, the darn husband insisted on buying me a smaht phone.  More new stuff to learn, “I chose to take on the challenge.”

horizontal (i think)

horizontal (i think)

Good thing I did too.  I was forced to upgrade regular PC stuff today and now I can’t upload my pictures from my new camera to my laptop like normal. So, all of these pics came from my new, never, ever wanted, smaht phone.  Some of them actually do kinda tell a story.

What do you think?

imageimage imageimage

Thursday Already ????

This Obsessive Thought Thursday is certainly not turning out to be what I envisioned.  Today I got nothing.  No obsessive thoughts.  Don’t cry, this is a good thing. This means that the medication could be working.  Although medication is only a small part of my recovery from OCD.  Practice at challenging my compulsions is a big part of it as well.  I have my own ice cube challenge. For weeks, I have been practicing putting only 3 ice cubes in my coffee or tea.  Down from my norm of 4.  Today I can honestly say that I don’t need 4 ice cubes anymore.  3 is okay.  I do not stress out at the odd number. Great Progress!!!!

But only when it comes to ice cubes.  My next challenge is to eat three cookies.  I know it is hard work, but it must be done.  I haven’t thought about the light switches in my house for weeks.  Until last night.  I was able to go to sleep without checking their position.  More progress.  Excuse me for a second.

Okay I am back.  and I must say…. Damn they were in the wrong position!!!! and are now fixed….  A bit of anxiety when I saw that they were not correct, but nothing I can’t handle.  I may or may not have to keep checking them, but I am voting for not.  I will be okay…. Damn, I wish I believed that.  Anywho….

44sBack to compulsions.  This clothespin thing has been really bothering me lately.  I have tried them in numerous positions.  I have come to two conclusions.  They are best when positioned in random and utter chaos or if I get caught up in my obsessions, four 4’s. I tried two 8’s and one 16, but am most comfortable with the four 4’s.

So that ends todays OCD lesson from my point of view.  Be sure and return next week for who knows what????