“I know that’s what people say– you’ll get over it. I’d say it, too. But I know it’s not true. Oh, you’ll be happy again, never fear. But you won’t forget. Every time you fall in love it will be because something in the man reminds you of him.”
“1.conceived or appearing as if conceived by an unrestrained imagination;odd and remarkable; bizarre; grotesque:fantastic rock formations; fantastic designs.2.fanciful or capricious, as persons or their ideas or actions:We never know what that fantastic creature will say next.3.imaginary or groundless in not being based on reality; foolish orirrational:fantastic fears.4.extravagantly fanciful; marvelous.5.incredibly great or extreme; exorbitant:to spend fantastic sums of money.6.highly unrealistic or impractical; outlandish:a fantastic scheme to make a million dollars betting on horse races.7.Informal. extraordinarily good:a fantastic musical.”
Unrestrained, beauty of the game,
Uncontained, no limits are found.
Unrestrained, freedom without shame.
Uncontained, leaping with no sound.
Undetained, words flowing amaze.
Undenied creativity —
Unconceived all the possibilities,
Undenied art — ingenuity.
Art, there is no limits, no bounds,
Start, nothing ventured is the same.
Art, bizarre and odd, they surround.
Start, with words; imagination reigns.
Impart advice: “Do What You Like.”
Dart here, there –no right way exists.
Art, the forms of imagination,
Dart, the fantasticalpersists.
” A Lento consists of two quatrains with a fixed rhyme scheme of abcb, defe as the second and forth lines of each stanza must rhyme. To take it a step further, but not required, try rhyming the first and third lines as well as the second and forth lines of each stanza in this rhyming pattern: abab, cdcd. The fun part of this poem is thrown in here as all the FIRST words of each verse should rhyme. There is no fixed syllable structure to the Lento, but keeping a good, flowing rhythm is recommended.”
” What is your great novel/novella/collection of short/flash fiction/poetry/ pulp paperback/graphic novel? Of course, you don’t have to write it, just write about it.
Weave any sort of tale; in the abstract or concrete; as you or a character of yours; being accepted for publication; editing process; book tours – remember you ‘just wanna be a paperback writer.'”
I’m still working on a novel called: How Was Last Night For You? I’m editing it in second draft. Still a lot of work to do and haven’t had the time to work on it lately. This Octelle poem illustrates the story line roughly:
Every so often, I try to update you with the details of my life, beneath the writing, and the subtext behind poems. I don’t think I’ve done this since the end of February, so I’d like to share a bit about my life lately.
One of the biggest areas in life I’m working on is my health. Those of you who have been with me a while know I suffer from a mood disorder (depression) and from that depression, excessive amounts of fatigue.
Psychiatric drugs are evil little pills. I started with Invega which stopped an initial psychosis (which has never occurred again) but also made me ‘flat;’ caused a great deal of pain in muscles of my back, shoulders, and neck; as well as resulted in a weight gain over ten pounds. After switching to risperidone, I gained another ten pounds and using a medication to help me sleep called Gabapentin, added twelve pounds or more. The antipsychotic I’m on now works a great deal better for me then any of the ones I was on before, but as usual, I gained another ten pounds.
Experiencing fatigue most of the time makes it difficult to exercise and do cardio. I have been feeling well enough to walk for twenty to thirty minutes three or four times a week. And on off days, I have been trying to do yoga for twenty minutes.
My big change lately has been a diet and supplement overhaul. I use supplements from a
system called the ‘redbox.’ It is a system of health focused not only on losing weight but living a healthy lifestyle. Different supplements in the system have helped many people lose weight; stop feeling chronic pain such as fibromyalgia or arthritis; given people a ton more energy; and aided people in maintaining a fitness level at the gym or otherwise.
Using the supplements you start with an Eight Day Ignite, a detox in which your body gets rid of bad toxins and resets your metabolism so you can lose weight and function better. In my first Eight Days, I lost 5 lbs and 8.5 inches. I was pleased with my initial result, especially losing inches in my hips, waist, and thighs. Many women lose much more then I lost initially. I’m continuing on the ignite plan for the rest of the month (the detox part is finished) and I’m hoping to be able to lose 9 lbs by the end of this month, to reach my first weight and health goal. After, I will continue on some of the supplements on the weight loss plan.
A meal plan is provided, and the plan includes eating well in small meals throughout the day focusing on eating protein and green vegetables. One day I get to eat carbohydrates such as fruit, rice, whole grain bread (etc.) and on Sunday I can eat what I like, it’s a cheat day. The plan also includes exercise of about thirty minutes a day and using some of the supplements. Many people have had great results on these products. So I’m excited to see where they can take me, especially since losing weight without significant cardio has been a challenge.
Besides my health, I have been up to many other things. I have been working a lot on developing short stories and other pieces for submission. I was excited to submit one of my first short stories developed off a Flash Fiction piece I wrote in the past. And I’m looking also at submitting some pieces of poetry in the future. I keep discovering new ideas and new topics that I would like to write short stories to submit. It’s a bit of a challenge as many of you probably know because each place you submit to has different submission guidelines and wants stories of specific length. Short story for instance, vary widely from 800 words to as many as 40, 000 in some of the places I’ve been looking at.
Work on my novel continues, albeit, at a slower pace then I have been doing. Working on
the novel and working on pieces in-between, often results in the novel being left for a week or two. I do plan to write up a couple of chapters this week if possible. The book is at an exciting part so I have to move onward. I thought initially, I was writing long chapters and would have plenty of length for a full book. But PJ asked me if I was doing a novella or novel, and I thought about it a bit and I think I might have to add some parts into the novel, or weave in a second storyline. I will see where I am at the end of the first draft which is rapidly coming to a close. I’m thankful to have a blogger friend Martin, offering to go through and help edit my book once I have all the chapters together on word, and I will do the same for his book. Then, I suppose I will be doing a whole bunch of rewriting.
In-between this all I’m still working through different forms of poetry, doing the one word prompts provided by The Daily Post , as well as my novel. I will not be doing The Daily Post prompts in April due to National Poetry Writing Month. But, you will still find I do the odd beauty post and other topics that come to my mind.
I’m not sure how completing the POPSUGAR booklist will end up. I read here and there but have only been able to get through two or three books lately. I know when spring finally arrives (in appearance), and I can see the flowers and not see it snowing outside, I will be in much more of a reading mood.
In addition to writing and health, I’m going to movies, catching up on my favourite shows such as Scandal (my favourite right now), watching movies on Netflix, seeing friends whenever I can, doing a bit of dating, and fitting everything else in when I can. Hope all is going well for you.
I know there is an A to Z challenge going on with some bloggers in April but I also wanted to bring up another fantastic challenge I’m doing in April. April is National Poetry Writing Month or NaPoWriMo. It is similar to Blogging 201 Poetry except for you’re writing a poem with a prompt provided on the website, everyday for the month of April. You can check it out and add your blog to the list of bloggers participating here if you want to join me for the challenge.
I have been dealing with issue of my weight lately and it’s upsetting. There is all this ” be happy, love your body as it is” propaganda out there right now and the truth is I just don’t buy it. You can tell people to love their body all you want but if someone feels fat for their body those words are just that, words.
What I find particularly maddening about my personal situation is my utter helplessness when it comes to gaining the weight and losing it. Last year I lost about 10 lbs on Herbal Magic by dieting. Essentially, I lost about 2 lbs every week until I hit 10 lbs and then my body refused to lose anymore weight. This is because I took medication called Risperidon and it is the type of medication that holds on to the fat in your body. Hence, a goal weight of 165 lbs was not obtainable but I hoped that a weight of around 181 lbs would be easy enough for me to maintain given the diet Herbal Magic had me on was a maintenance diet for me and my level of activity, instead of a weight loss diet, after I lost the 10 lbs. Herbal magic was expensive and I got tired of the women who worked there who never seemed to stay the same or know what they were doing.
But the problem I experienced with Risperidon I have experienced with another with a new medication I use to sleep called Gabapentin. I have mentioned it before in a post and explained I use it for the side effect of drowsiness not its actual intended use. And I am frankly, shocked that after all the psychiatric medication I have used that nothing else has made me gain much weight before. But Gabapentin has hit fast and hard. It works wonderfully for sleep but 300 mg initially made me gain around 8 lbs. Adding another 100 mg as my sleep doctor suggested added another 2 lbs to the 8 lbs and in the space of a month and a half I have gained back 10 lbs or more.
It makes me very angry to have such a tummy back, that I actually have 2 little rolls on my back and a none to small, muffin top. I maintained my diet just as I said I would even after leaving Herbal Magic but it was not enough, another medication was working against me and I have been floundering around upset that my jeans don’t do up properly, that my tummy shows through my shirt a lot and that I have put on extra weight all over my body and I don’t know how to lose it.
It turns out I haven’t been following my diet as closely as I thought and even though I am eating less, I still need need to eat less and drink only 1 can of pop only as my treat everyday. Letting myself get sloppy — indulging in 2 to 3 pops a day unknowingly, and other little eating habits has allowed me to eat extra calories and yearn for those extra extra calories. It has been so hard trying to eat less because every night I go to bed starving and end up having to eat because I cannot sleep if I don’t, I’ve tried, several times. I’ve been trying to fight appetite by using green coffee bean extract which seems to be the only supplement I can take without it effecting my medications. But it is not the same as being on the Herbal Magic Supplements.
I don’t know what to do? I can’t do cardiovascular exercise due to the fact that I have an underlying illness which has robbed me of energy. I do not have the physical or mental energy to do many activities particularly exercise, as hard as that is to understand. I try to do HIIT videos but find they are too difficult and wear me out for the next 2 days, and there only 12 minutes or so. I try to do 10-20 minutes on the elliptical, most days I cannot manage the energy for that. It has been too cold to just walk around the block a few times even. So, I feel lost and my stomach hurts from my jeans button 😦 Gaining weight took place in the snap of my fingers and losing it is going to take time since I can’t afford Herbal Magic this time.
I feel very trapped, cornered. And it is never a place I want to be. I am not a healthy weight and this in 6 words, is my problem.
Yesterday’s blog was kind of difficult for me. To admit to the world all my flaws and inabilities as a 28-year-old adult wasn’t easy but last night I was thinking. I thought that mental illness is often talked about so negatively. Often, I and others only talk about the bad experiences we have because of our sickness but you don’t stop living once you get sick. Life becomes harder but you soldier on and get through the tough times and a great number of good things happen between all the difficulties you have to face in life, just as it is for people who are mentally healthy. So today I wanted to share with you the good experiences that have occurred for me since becoming part of the mentally ill, maybe only because I had this health issue.
1. Awareness of Mental Illness – I have become aware of what it is like to be a person with mental illness. Through my experiences I am able to share what it is like with other people what it is to have a mood disorder. This generates sometimes an intense amount of discussion on websites such as Facebook and sometimes in the comment sections of my blogs. I am able to empathize with people who go through mental illness and other illnesses, especially with people who have experiences such as mine. I have also spent a lot of time on the internet researching the symptoms and medications associated with different mental illnesses and learned a lot of facts about those aspects of mental illness. There a lot of things that are common across mental illnesses but there are also certain things that are different. Sometimes, however, it is thought the same pills will help different sicknesses and this is not always the case.
There is also often a misrepresentation of how most mentally ill people are in real life and how they are shown in movies. A movie that was great at showing the truth about mentally ill people was Silver Lining’s Play Book with the gorgeous Bradley Cooper and beautiful Jennifer Lawrence. But movies that often make it difficult to be a person with mental illness because of how others perceive mentally ill people after watching them are movies such as Shutter Island with Leonardo DiCaprio and Girl Interrupted. That is not to say that cases such as those in the movies do not occur, it’s just that they are the extreme version or a worse scenario of what mentally ill people are truly like.
2. I Learned not to be Shy – Sometimes I am quite because I am fatigued or tired and that is often the case, but when I do have energy I have found I am very good at obtaining information about others and what they are experiencing in life. Plus, I am not afraid just to talk to a stranger often anymore. I used to be so shy or assume people were just a bother but now even some weirdo who is hitting on me or some people who others might consider an unsavory character such as homeless person I don’t mind talking to for a few minutes. I just realized that by being shy I was missing out on so much and as hard as it is for me to talk sometimes it’s even harder for other people to talk, especially cute guys and potential friends.
Additionally, somebody who has anxiety or who most people will ignore and not talk to often need to be heard the most and have a lot to say. Just because a stranger is talking to you doesn’t mean they are out to get you are being creepy (some are but not most). Most people just need someone to listen to them and to care about their life. People can be so intrinsically focused that they often forget everyone is experiencing their own personal battles or have their own unique stories and life experiences to share.
3. A Serious Boyfriend and More Great Friends – It has been said that when you are going into a new group of people you should have a gimmick or something that makes you memorable to other people. The fact that I am on disability, write for women’s magazine, and can only take one class a semester, well that makes for great conversation. I start sharing the details of my life and other people are soon ready to share about their lives and I have made some excellent friends this way. Sometimes I’d rather not talk about what my life is actually like but sometimes talking leads to meeting amazing people. After all, a person who does not go to work everyday, cannot be involved in many volunteer activities, and/or fitness activities anymore, needs to learn how to make friends somehow.
So I talk to friends of friends more, talk to random people more, and when it came to wanting to get out their and meet a boyfriend, I even went online to POF and found my wonderful Azdine. And best of all Azdine liked me even though I was sick and is really tolerant and understanding of my illness. He told me in his religion people who are sick are blessed. I doubt he remembers that now but it was a good pick-up line. We have gone out over 1 year and 6 months and we have our ups and downs. At heart, we are homebodies but we get along famously together.
4. A Closer Relationship to God – When I was first sick, I hallucinated during my psychotic episode that I was in Hell at the Hospital. I dreamed that my parents would be taken away from me eventually because you aren’t allowed to have parents in Hell. I thought the nurses in the hospital were really going to hurt me, and I desperately wanted to not hear voices. I wanted to be able to trust what I heard come out of people’s mouths. I thought God had forgotten me, that I was separated from him eternally and that things would only get worse. Then slowly, as medication began to take effect and I came out of my psychotic episode I remembered the Footsteps poem which states that when we think God is nowhere to be found, he is really carrying us through the bad times in our life.
Later, I realized God was trying to bring me back to Him, closer to Him. You see in my life I hadn’t really been concerned with God as a priority. I cared about drinking and hanging with my friends and I was afraid to share God with the people in my life. Slowly, as I got better I got to the point where I could mention my beliefs to people and not be ashamed to be a Christian. I learned to cast all my worries on God and that through Him I would always be supported because He is so much stronger than any problem I might have. God is the light in the darkest of times, a lamp guiding my feet when I do not know what direction to turn. I may not know exactly where to go or what to do when I face hard times in my life but I know a footstep in front of me and that is all I need.
5. A Closer Relationship With my Family – I never realized how desperately I needed my parents until they tried to leave me at the hospital after the first horrible week I spent there. I hated the Psych Ward and I hated being stuck there and I looked forward to seeing my Mom and my Dad every day for the few hours they would spend with me at night in the hospital. Since then, even though it is tough to live at home I have realized what a blessing my parents and my family are in my life. I did not see my brothers for 3 weeks in hospital and that was a long time, I actually missed them! And when my little brother moved out, he always made and makes time to visit the house or we go and do things together such as see movies, go to the art gallery, and go shopping (etc).
I also realized how important the elderly people in my life were, how their story connected to my story in this life. My Grandma, for instance, I began to talk to earnestly and make an effort to make conversation with her and let her talk about herself. I developed an adult relationship with her. I also stopped saying I would visit, and actually started visiting my God Parent’s mother, my Grandma Reeder, Evelyn.
Evelyn cooks so much food when I go over there, I always try to bring someone with me so she doesn’t make me eat it all. Her desserts especially are amazing such as uncooked blueberry pie with mounds of whipped cream and home-made trifle. She has so much to say and has experienced so much tragedy in her life. Yet Evelyn has this amazing outlook on how she deals with at life, with much conversation and a smile on her face and Evelyn is in her mid 90’s.
Other people such as my God Parent’s saw how bad I really was when I was sick and I always feel like when I go over to their house I am in my second home. They lost a daughter to depression while I was dealing with my depression. She was in her late 30’s and had just gotten married. She was my family too, when I was first sick she came and talked to me and told me to focus on 3 things in my life to not get so worried about life and just take it day by day, something my mom also tells me to do.
So, it seems as if we lose a lot when we become sick with mental illnesses but it is also important for us all, those who suffer and those who hear our stories, to understand we are many of us still extremely blessed despite our sickness.