Stressors and how I cope having a mental disorder…

  1. Money, although there always is some but yet wham, the unexpected or balloon payment is due like say for your taxes.  Mine are due in October.  Think of something else.  Don’t spend a dime.  Save if one can, even pennies add up to dollars.  I have definitely gotten better at saving this year.  I stopped shopping for everything on Amazon and am being more frugal about going to the store for every little item.  My husband was supposed to take over the bills because of my disorder but it hasn’t happened and never will probably.

I don’t work so I have more time to find coupons and deals when we do spend.  He makes a decent income so if I am careful I can really tuck some money away if I’m careful.

I know I am blessed.  I can’t imagine being single and having to rely on my disability income which I get $1,000 a month.

2. Sickness and getting older.  I am not as fit as I used to be but am getting back on track.  But I have been dealing for the past two weeks with a new medical problem surrounding digestive issues and am really trying to avoid going to the doctor right now because of lack of insurance (see #3) at least until October 1.

To combat this stress I try to eat healthy all the time with the occasional goodie.  I also am now exercising 4x a week on average.  I am gardening, walking and doing yoga throughout the week.  This helps my getting in better shape and also helps mental alertness and health.  Today was a rest day and all I wanted to do was to rest but I am in the middle of several projects around the house and rose garden so it was actually harder than I thought it would be to take a day off but my body needed the rest.  So back at it tomorrow!

Although this can stress me out a lot I am learning that the key to my happiness is acceptance.

Now i am much more motivated to do the healthy things that I am doing.  Which in the past it has really been problematic to just sit all day and do nothing, now I do rest in the mornings but do get busier later in the day.  So it is good that I am treating my body better because I have really been sick a lot and it has caused me to make sure I do all I can to be healthy.

I might go to the doctor this week.  We shall see how things go but this relates to #1 the money stress with doctor bills and testing they might want to do.

3.  My parents.  I accept they will not always be around but my dad is paralyzed on his left half of his body and my mom is a fighter but is still very frail yet tough as a bird!

How I combat this stress is by spending as much time with them as I can and appreciating every moment.

4.  Kids and husband.  Kids is easy to combat.  All the work I put in when they were growing up has paid off and although I might not agree with all their decisions I am very proud of the 3 of them.  Interestingly enough, my disorder did not kick in until I was 38 and I was only lost to the world for a year of being psychotic.  Husband is one of my kids ha ha so ditto for him.

I also stress over the unexpected busy day, making sure I take all my meds, doing all I can for my family and friends even when an interruption comes at an inconvenient time.  I used to turn off my phone, which I still do, but I do take calls when I can as needed to be a good friend!

Well that is the main stuff.  What are some things that stress you out and how do you cope?  Comment below or email me at victoriamariealonso@yahoo.com.

Bless you all!  Of  course I pray a lot too and try to trust what God is doing.  But it isn’t always easy to do.

pax

Victoria

Still struggling…delusions smashed and lost…

Dear readers,

Was doing pretty good after Boston but then got hit with the paralyzed feeling that I have fought successfully today. I made a list and got busy and am now taking a break to just say that upon reflection my disorder has really progressed to a point where even minor stress can set off symptoms.

I did something that I am not proud of and feel very guilty about it. It has caused me to go down a very dark road away from God and I don’t know how to get back. This is not a good thing. I love God but it is very hard to please Him and my husband at the same time. ..

My walk with God up to this decision I made the other day has been pretty solid with an occassional slip up but I made a concsious choice to lie about something due to pressure from other people and it is all I can think about.

Back to drama in my life, and this time it doesn’t feel good.

I believe in God and know He loves me and everyone but when one chooses the easier path to save money through deceit it is very hard to feel close to God.

My delusions are that I am very special, not meant to work and that I am on a grand mission from God. Well this action of mine which I own fully smashes to pieces all my delusions. I feel lost and sad and well just paralyzed. I am struggling to make sense of this and don’t know what to do.

When I was diagnosed eleven years ago I had no idea of the road ahead and with this new twist am not sure how the next eleven years and beyond will go.

A dear friend of mine who also has Schizoaffective disorder called me yesterday for support so I talked to him about his situation and promised to pray and I will and even offered to go to coffee next week to talk some more. I also reached out and helped someone who was newly diagnosed on FB. But is this enough to make up for my misdeed?

I am not perfect by any means but even in my dreams I was in some sort of purgatory where I was cleaning and cleaning and not doing a good job. It’s funny because it reminded me of when I was a child and had so many chores to do all the time and was always criticized. Well my husband and daughter still do criticize me but to be truthful I don’t do much housework these days as my dear daughter does it as a form of rent. Don’t know what I will do when she moves out next year. I don’t mind cleaning but much prefer yard work.

But I am getting off point. I am struggling and sad and feel very guilty. STuck and don’t know how to shake it. Hope I don’t end up in the hospital again over it as that is where i head when stress gets to be too much.

Hope everyone is doing well. I haven’t felt to blog but it is already helping to vent my frustrations to ya’ll. God bless!

Pax

Victoria

as we forgive those who trespass against us is my prayer today…

I am in complete shock right now. In addition to the pain I am experiencing with both my parents being ill I have to deal with my sister who made a very stigmatizing statement to me a couple of days ago. I am so hurt and angry and I know I need to forgive her but it is the hardest thing right now to let go of.

My mom said recently that she wanted all three of us (my brother, sister and me) to be on her account because we could watch each other. My parents have a lot of money. Well I let my siblings know her wishes through text and never heard back from them. When I brought it up to my sister the other day she said “there is no way you are going on her account because you are mentally ill” and then she said it again. She has been really nice to me through all of these hard times with my mom and has been there for my mom every day to help. I now realize that she has been patronizing rather than genuinely nice.

Originally my mom had wanted my brother to be in charge of everything as my sister has proven not to be trustworthy in several areas throughout our life with my parents. Well after she said that comment I was in such shock that I just said well it needs to be you and my brother. I thought a great comeback later, I might be mentally ill but at least I am honest.

I am in such pain over this and immediately got my brother involved. I just want my parent’s money to be protected from my sister. She has made other comments since then that just don’t sit well with me. She wants my mom to go home after she is better and get a full time caregiver. Well I know that this is not the best thing for her and my brother agrees that she needs to go into a home where there are activities and the like. I have been secretly looking at places for mom and my brother is here today to step in and take over all the decisions.

I just want the best for my parents and my sister is not to be in control! Forget her insensitive comment about me being mentally ill the bottom line is that if we use all their money to keep them as comfortable as possible in their declining years then so be it. If there is nothing left for us then so be it. I fear my sister thinks differently so am so glad my brother who lives 5 hours away will be here to get the very best care for my mom and dad.

Whew that was hard to write. My brother wants me and my sister to stay in touch after our parents die but I really don’t know if that will happen.

I know I need to forgive her but it is very hard right now as it is so fresh.

I am venting my pain and dismay. Thank you for reading this.

I know I am obsessing but it is where I am at and it is consuming me right now.

Bless you all,

Pax

Victoria

Relapse, therapy via teleconference and relief…plus goals

Dear readers,

It has been quite the ride again, relapsing back into delusional thinking of which I have never talked about my delusions in depth due to its confusion and stress it causes me.  But things went well yesterday with my new therapist who specializes in psychotic disorders which I will get to in a minute…

For the past few months, my delusions were much lessened due to taking CBD oil by GOTERPY to a great degree until the recent stressful situation where I resigned form my teaching job and am once again unsure of what the future holds caused a relapse back into delusional thinking that was causing me much stress and angst.

Yesterday I met with my new therapist and it was very hard!  I thought if I talked about it it may help but it did the opposite but it turned out alright because although he couldn’t see my leg going  a mile a minute while talking about the delusions I relayed to him my distress and he asked what would help and i said taking my anti-anxiety medication which I took a break and did.  He then switched gears and invited me to talk about my strengths and goals, which I did and it helped to back off what made me uncomfortable.

The thing about delusions is that they are so confusing for me and in the end only time will tell really.  So to talk about them only causes stress so I have decided to share them with him as an outlet for getting it out there but that I am  going to stop ftrying to figure them out anymore but rather focus on the negative symptoms of my disorder and also if I will write for a living or just help my husband with his work and earn my disability and write according to my whim rather than as a deadline.

I want to have goals today as of right now I have lots of ideas but not much motivation to get going.  So far I have taken my meds, eaten breakfast while watching my fave show, fed the dogs, filled up my diffuser with lavender and bergamot and am now blogging.

So often the only way I feel like I am doing better is if I accomplish things.  This week has not been a week where that happened but it is understandable with all that has occurred.  I know I need to be more gentle with myself through this rough time but there is so much that needs to get done, weeding, housework, get some walking in and get to my writing which probably won’t happen today.

Thinking about driving up the coast to pick up some apples from a farm to make my eldest son apple cobbler for his birthday next week and maybe just maybe do the Bob Jones Trail which is six miles of steady flat walking.  But praying about it so we shall see.

Ah, what a hard week.  Stress does this to me so I know that I will not work outside the home again except for maybe writing at leisure.  Time will tell.

I do praise Him who made heaven and earth and am grateful in  a sense to not be teaching as it was a lot of work for a pittance of pay.

God bless you all!

Pax

Victoria

Seeking mental health help from therapist with psychotic disorder experience

Dear readers,

Unfortunately, sad to say some of my past delusions are realizing themselves due to the stress of resigning from my job.  I just resigned from a part time sociology 101 instructor job due to an altercation in the classroom which I did not observe but the stress of its ramifications led me to resigning although I was a good teacher and feel I made an impact on my students as they expressed to me recently.

Interestingly enough, the main challenging student dropped out of class right after I submit my resignation. When odd timing like that occurs it only adds to my delusion that God does not want me to work.

I am currently doing ok but am struggling with depression (lack of enjoyment of things previously enjoyed and motivation) and anxiety.

I see my new tele-therapist on Friday via video so it will be interesting if he is able to help me out. Hoping his experience with psychotic disorders proves beneficial but it is very hard for me to talk about my delusions and often causes more pain as they are so mysterious like this dastard disorder

Stress has always been a huge factor for me and it has been quite the stressful month or so.

I wish you all well,

Pax

Victoria

Sad to resign, but validated too!

Dear readers,

My recent resignation from my teaching job is not a defeat but yet a victory with my Schizophrenia/Schizoaffective Disorder.  Allow me to explain more fully:

  • I stuck it out longer than any other job despite severe stress
  • I made my ultimate decision on my own but did feel led by God and obscure events which were not a relapse of my disorder but a healthy processing of events, which were validated by my doctor, therapist, mentors and daughter all of whom I hold in the highest esteem.  But the fact that I made the decision on my own leads me to believe that my thinking is clear and that my emotions are not guiding me which is HUGE progress
  • They cannot find an instructor to take my class because of the dynamics of the class and the altercation which led to my resignation.
  • I have not lost my faith in God

Isn’t this enough?  I haven’t told my husband yet though because I am afraid he just won’t get it.  I have left so many jobs in the past and he didn’t understand then so I am waiting for the right time to tell him which may never come.  I don’t want to embellish the truth.  I believe that a strong marriage is one where one can share with the other any and everything and that just isn’t the case with my marriage.  Although, it is good and stable, his inability to understand my mental health disorder causes me to be less than honest I am sad to say.

But I am happy to report that I will still be working, just not directly with the public.  I have lots of ideas and will report more on them as I do my research and make some decisions.

The delusion that I believe that God doesn’t want me to work again has realized itself once again.  But I am toying with the idea to become a freelance writer and also write for journals as a way to share my knowledge and challenge my brain as I write and submit papers based on research and my own insight.

I plan to continue to blog my progress so thank you all for supporting me.

God bless you all and if you don’t believe in God I leave you with the quote that I left my class tonight in a goodbye email.  We studied religion to a minor extent in class and the text stated the four main concerns of religion which science cannot prove.  They are: the existence of God, the purpose of life, the afterlife and morality.  But Karl Marx has written these damning words that “Religion is the opiate of the people” of which I have reflected upon greatly through all these trials as I take great comfort in my Catholic Faith, which is but one way to God.

I quote from the movie based on a true story, Song of Bernadette,

“For those who believe, no explanation is necessary. For those who do not believe, no explanation is possible.”

and I beseech you to open your minds, hearts and bodies to the moving of the Holy Spirit, The Divine, The Universe, Mother Nature etc. to ask for faith that you may be able to acknowledge that we are not here by accident but were made from a wonderful design and that when you die, this faith may be realized fully.

Pax

Victoria

 

 

Stress, relapse and moving on….

Dear readers,

I hope you all are doing well and that the sun shines on you brightly today to make your day just a bit brighter and hoping for the same for me.

I made a decision yesterday that is only so familiar.

I resigned from my job due to stress involving two students fighting in my class and the ongoing investigation which does not end yet they are still allowed back in my class!  The thought of them erupting again especially one student in particular who is emotionally unstable just sends me back to that dark place.

I hope they will accept my resignation and that I will be able to help the transition of a new teacher coming in post mid semester.  I feel bad for my class but attendance has been very low since the incidence and I feel like my lenient style will not benefit anyone.

I see my psychiatrist today so that is good news and I am sure he will be fine with my decision to quit, again.

Having much angst, anxiety and worry but the symptoms of schizophrenia have not reappeared so that’s good news!

I will now have time to pursue writing scholarly articles especially focusing on sociology of the family, aging and other sociological issues that affect our country and world today.

I have decided I am not fit to work directly with the public as you never know what issues involve other people and that is a good realization I believe.

So, once again I am putting my mental health first and learning along the way all the time.  My family does not know yet and my biggest fear is that they won’t understand and may view it as giving up so I ask for your prayers in full force.  May lie to them but still deciding….

I will also now have more time to focus on other things in my life that I have neglected this semester like going to the gym, walking, gardening, doing podcasts and the like.  So much I want to do but have been unable to do so due to working.  Glad I am receiving permanent disability so have a thousand dollars a month coming in to help us out financially.

God is so good, even though I loved teaching and received great evaluations from my students and a decent evaluation from the full time instructor who observed my class post crisis, so I feel good about that.

God bless you all,

Pax

Victoria

Hard day, week and month! But not giving up kind of…

Dear readers,

Won’t rehash it here but it’s been tough and last night I thought I was relapsing with my Schizophrenia due to the recent stress of my teaching job.  Felt like every song that came on the radio was for me but today I am not thinking that way and I am glad.

One of my delusions is that I believe that God does not want me to work.  Well I almost gave up my class yesterday due to lack of support by the college where I work.  But alas, today the dean of students met with me and provided me needed support.  I didn’t say much, just let him explain this one challenging student’s background and stressors and came away knowing that once again I had judged someone unfairly.

The best part is that this student is now addressing by my name, Mrs. Alonso and treating me with respect rather than with rudeness.  Don’t know if I have won him over yet with my continued kindness and respect and time will tell but felt good to be respected and treated in a positive way rather than the opposite.

Not that I need pats on my back or anything but it has been a hard semester at many levels.  Last night I almost gave up, as I was feeling like I have so many times before when I have given up due to stress but my daughter stepped in and helped me to see differently and today I pushed through class, making one big mistake, but also doing a good job at what I enjoy.

It is hard to put into words but in the past I have let people down, my coworkers, my clients (used to be a therapist), parents and although I believe every decision was the right one at the time.  I pushed through this delusion and I believe like I won for once.

It is just so hard to separate between reality and delusional thought.  If God wanted something from me previously, I used to ask for guidance from above and I felt like He would show me His will for me and others.  Now I don’t know how to believe like a normal person anymore and with this I now can see my struggle.  Sure God can speak to us through obscure and clear means and I do believe God wants the best for me and all.  But the devil is out to get me too and I pray to God to help me to be in the now in reality not a fantasy world where I believe God doesn’t want me to work.

Does any of this make sense?

I am a little melancholy after these stressors, mom and dad almost dying, class conflicts involving the police and other stuff too.

But I will fight for my sanity and have decided I am not going to teach at this college next semester for various reasons but God help me I am going to finish up this semester strong and give my students love for sociology.  I will look into online teaching and see if I can make money writing journal articles which I do enjoy doing research.

Hope everyone has a great Friday and sorry that i am a little down but I am just taking it easy tonight and trying to hang on to what sanity I have and live my life  full force!

Pax

Victoria

A chill day…

Dear readers,

Today has been a chill sort of day although I still got a lot done despite yesterday’s difficulties in class.  I removed that post as some of you may have noticed as I felt it may not need to be posted at a public level despite my continued anonymity.

Brief recap: altercation in my class yesterday, police report, much anxiety and just dealing with what life or the Divine throws at me, accepting His will even in hard moments.

Spoke to police today and there will be police presence at my class on Tuesday, going to explain to sociology students that it is just a precaution, not a reason for alarm.  And my mentor and long time friend and sponsor who is psychology doctorate student has offered her support by coming to talk to my class on Tuesday.  Both students involved in the altercation will not be present so we are going to call it a teaching moment and hopefully be somewhat therapeutic for all, including me.  This is awesome news as I never imagined so much good could come from such a difficult situation but I am noticing that in the hardest parts of life, God often gives support in the most unusual and beneficial ways!

Still in my pajamas today at 6 but bought a new mattress topper for our marriage bed, going to get busy washing sheets and jammies and take a hot bath after dinner and just relax.

Have some papers to grade but will get to them tomorrow as I don’t have much in the way of plans.

Today I did indulge in some of my unhealthy vices but not drugs or alcohol but was feeling really stressed and went to my go to’s.  Have to work on that because I ended up taking a two hour nap and felt like s**t for the afternoon.  Sugar can do that to me and I hate that I am now reliant on it again to get through my difficult moments!

Enough about me and my life!  How is everyone else doing?

email me anytime to share your thoughts or your day as we all have them and it is a comfort now that my blogs are linked up and still going to try to do my podcasts but who knows when.  They may me more like moments which is less intimidating…

victoriamariealsonso@yahoo.com for any correspondence

Thank you to all my faithful followers for the emails and comments.  Some of them are so deep and written so above my level of understanding of my mental disorder that even though it might take me some time to get back to you, know that I will.

Pax

Victoria

Some sort of goulash, stigmatize, cheating and dream…

Dear readers,

I hope all is well with each one of you!

It has been a rough week and I feel compelled to share on here.

We thought my mom might die Monday night but after asking for prayer she came out of it and said she was hungry (she hadn’t eaten for  a week).  The next day she was back to her old critical self and got mad at me for cancelling my class (would have been a basket case anyway) and emphasized the importance of me not missing teaching my class.  She also paid me a huge compliment that I had my dream job and how happy she was that I was using my degree in my career.  The compliments are few from my mom so this was wonderful but the daggers she inserted the next day were huge and I would like to share.

She criticized me for driving 5 hours to meet another Schizophrenia survivor and actually expressed to me that it was my Schizophrenia!  This sort of stigmatizing affected me greatly and when she is better I plan to speak to her about it but for now I know she is just ignorant about how to deal with a person with Schizophrenia and in that ignorance she is forgiven.  But I did check in with my daughter if she agreed with my mom and she absolutely did not.  I had planned the trip for two months so it wasn’t impulsive and even though our time was short for a very long drive it was a potent and powerful meeting which I will always be grateful for!

To loved ones, blaming decisions you don’t agree with on the disorder only causes much pain and suffering so find another way to deal with your loved ones affected by a disorder like Schizophrenia rather than accusing them of the disorder being the problem.  I am doing so well right now and am proud that my disorder is in some kind of remission.

Moving on…

I was grading some papers and it came to my attention that some students might have cheated on the ten point quiz.  I have already dealt with plagiarism and this realization made me sad, angry and powerless over my class.  Many thoughts of inferiority came up, did I make the quiz too hard, why are they feeling the need to cheat on a ten point quiz and the like.  I made a decision after discussing the matter with many and sent out an email to the class that there might have been cheating occurring on the quiz and that if I caught anybody cheating on any future tests they would get a zero and be made to sit in the front of the class for all future quizzes and exams.  So sad that at a college level I had to do this but since  I cannot prove this I felt that dealing with the class in a broad way might alleviate future cheating.  But the whole process caused me much angst and right now I am fighting depression and this surely added to it in a negative way.

I do not know if I will teach again in the spring as some of the stress this job is causing is just that, stressful and I must take care of my mental health above all else.  Now that I am receiving permanent disability I have that leisure to not work so I pray God to guide me in all that I do.

After a rough day of staying in my pajamas all day, eating much sugar and not doing very much I had the most interesting dream.

I was a child again but with the same problems I suffer today, Schizophrenia, dad’s major strokes, mom sick and critical and the like.  I was sort of adopted by this very large family.  I was appreciated, encouraged and made to feel like a part of the family. Reminded me of how heaven may be one day…

I know I suffer from much emotional baggage from my childhood and this dream worked out some of the needs I had that weren’t met as a child.

I know that I must not give up, God knows we’re worth it and I won’t give up!  My  new therapist is very helpful in working through these childhood issues and I can see the other side but it is painful and hard work!

Bless you all,

Pax

Victoria