Two Cups

9 05 2015

two coffee cups

Sometimes it takes two cups of coffee to crank the brain in the morning, ok I’ll admit it, two cups with 1/2 1/2, that is. ? Ok FINE, I confess the eating method I’ve very successfully been on for about a year limits my carbs to 1 hr a day, and cream in my coffee is limited to only 1 a day which sucks when I need 2 and is cool when I want to break the rules which is often, and yet I’m still gradually letting go of poundage, thank God. But this rambling nonsense is not what I wanted to blog about.

I’m putting it off because I’m scared. Shitless that is. I haven’t felt like writing so I’ve been reading other bipolar blogs. Here is a BIG thank you to ALL bipolar blog writers. I have one comment for all, I RESEMBLE THIS!

Ok fine, said that. Bipolar and Relationships. That’s what I’m scared shitless to write about. It’s what I purposely avoided in my book.

Thank God for other bipolar writers, because, wow, I’m alone in life, but not in community with other bloggers about the topic.

Bipolar. Maybe I should start there. The more I read about other bipolars, the more it affirms basic truths. It matters not, what path, ethnicity, gender, preference, lifestyle, economics, age etc. Bipolar is what it is. It doesn’t seem to matter if we choose medication, organic, or hybrid methods of treatment. Bipolar is a very active roller coaster ride, yes it can be smooth and boring occasionally, but we never seem to know when a normal mood is gonna go sideways fast and hold on to see where we end up.

Relationships. Honestly. I gave up years ago. A)I seem to be attracted to members of the opposite sex who end up taking advantage of me. B) I am a high maintenance freak show at times. C)I lose myself completely, and who wants to live with a subservient ghost? D) When I’m triggered off my rocker bat shit up or down crazy, 99 people out of 100 only make it worse. The one cure all I can rely on, is copious amounts of time, me, alone, nature. Preferably with access to sweating and creating. Period. That is my reset cure.

It doesn’t help that I do shift work. I’ve found remote industrial work, is a good routine for me, I’m gone for a couple weeks, and then I”m off. No matter how screwed up I get at home or work, the other is a sure fire routine for coming back on track.

So living my life alone with bipolar, sans medication, I’m quite successful. I have long term employment in a job I’ m highly suited for, I self -regulate my bipolar, and have many hobbies.

Now I feel like an embarrassed idiot, but I want truth to be shared. Yes I am living a bipolar life without meds, drugs, or alcohol. But I’m still batshit crazy at times, and just don’t seem to have relationships any where on the priority list. Every time I get involved, it ends in disaster. I concluded long ago, I am the common denominator, and yes I have dedicated decades, and thousands of dollars to therapy, workshops, ad nauseam etc.

Which leads me to the one relationship I have always relied upon. I’m not a member of any religion. But there is something unseen greater then me, I have always been able to access when I’m truly sincere, open and humble, which gives me peace, comfort, connection, and releases all fears and worries. When I truly open and ask the universe for help, I have always received whatever I truly needed in the moment. This is the connection I’ve rededicated my life to again and again, and this is what I feel like my life purpose is, to be connected, and to be available to help others who are temporarily lost, to feel connected again. This is the deepest peace I’ve discovered in my bipolar journey, I may not be connected in a traditional socially acceptable societal means with other humans, but I have plenty of time to reconnect as needed inside, with what appears to be, everything.

two coffee cups

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Millennial Affect

14 12 2014

IMG_5739I declare a new dawn for mental health and I have become a fan of the millennial generation. I wholeheartedly cheer and admire them for many reasons:

On a personal level when I began my organic mental health journey, such words were never combined. The medical professionals at the time, authoritatively said medications or else, I have since organically lived out and or thru most if not all of their dire predictions.

I’m now a little past the middle of the pack in the workforce. Established, nothing to prove, enjoying my job etc. I’ve been given the opportunity to begin mentoring millennial’s in the workplace and I got to say it’s a real joy! When I entered the workplace, after adopting many strange ideas of spirituality, it was a typical older generation judgmental non-supportive etc.

After first hand experience witnessing how a majority of the millennial’s are as individuals; how they interact with each other, their level of integrity, I’ve got to say it’s impressive.

Another level I see is, Great Hope, for people experiencing mental health opportunities because one of the first phrases I paid attention to from millennials was when I began hearing, no judgment, wow! and it’s true.

In the midst of a crazy day, who knows what was going on inside or outside of me I’m coping with details the best I can at times, and I’m pretty hardened to the fact that the world I come from, the culture that I grew up in, and have lived a majority of my adult life, judgment was standard. I knew I was crazy outside of the box etc. yet I still was bound and determined to function, however I could, regardless of how crazy I looked and felt, because I was going to make my way in this world organically no matter what.

Hiding my “crazy”, and spiritual solutions to crazy, has been a primary society survival method. Here come the millennials, I don’t feel judgment, I don’t feel a lot of drama, I feel calmer in their presence, then I’ve ever felt with the generation that trained me. What a relief!

It’s funny, I’ve been immersed in spiritual new age culture for 25+ years, and yet my experience with coworkers under 35, and this is why i’m such a huge fan of them, I learn spirituality from them every shift, in an industrial workplace .

When I began in the workplace, a spiritual approach to mental health and coworkers, YEAH RIGHT. Yet, I adapted, learned, and became good friends, and as my mentors retire, I am relieved to know that I’ll be working with millennials, and can’t wait to see what their kids are like, until I retire.

I’m excited and relieved from my position in our evolving culture, we really are getting better at dealing with mental health, I can really see a day where we will get to bipolar order, bipolar awareness, bipolar celebration, I am extremely grateful for this and I am a millennial fan.

Thank God for all the younger spiritual gurus in our lives, we need them!





Bipolar Rocket Science

30 11 2013

 

RocketManreposted from 1/10/10 (still true as ever)

Yes Houston we have cleared for flight all systems functioning big ahh is being heard.  OHHH thank God mental phases pass.  Never ceases to amaze me how good my job is for me.  Bingo 2nd post of New Year and George has already lost it.  No seriously.  The routine of work is good for me.  I am completely open to retiring as a full time bum/speaker/blogger, yet and in between times, the discovery of a job I’m actually talented at and desire to get up early to do “spiritual” pushups, ie a little exe, Gi Gong, daily reader(with a positive focus), meditation.  I almost sprayed coffee again on a friend the other day when she said oh you are so spiritual and disciplined.  Hmm.  When a mental institution is in one corner of the ring, an alcohol and drug addiction which leads to cuddling up to dumpsters in another corner, and the ability to fly off the handle at any and all perceived idiots is in another corner, and behind door number 4;  Do these simple things everyday and you have a chance of being functional, and having preferred choice of activity on and off the job.  Uhh.  Hmm.  Walk around in a bathrobe and slippers behind bars, puking all over myself, yelling at anything, uh could you repeat option 4 please.  Yes, it’s called a daily routine.  Wakes up my body, mind, and spirit, and puts me on a path that leads to interacting in a semi sane way with most people and situations, and gradually leads me to improving the quality and options in my life.  Now add 20 years.  Nope, not disciplined and spiritual, just lazy.  I’ve discovered after much research in all corners of the ring, that taking care of myself, leads to a much lazier and enjoyable life.  Thank God for being bipolar today, so that I can cherish the simple and the profound gifts that have come to me from running from the dark results available with bipolar and into gifts which come from, spiritual practice.  KEY WORD HERE.  P-R-A-C-T-I-C-E.  What is it the black belts of 12 step say(I’m referring to the Al-Anon ers.)  Practice not perfection, raising a virtual toast to that one.  Which reminds me of an unmotivational poster I heard about yesterday that almost sprayed my second attempt at drinking coffee.  ”Not all of us are capable of being astronauts, get over it”, well, fortunately for us bipolar types, we can rocket all around the place on and off demand at times, and when we teach ourself how to pilot our own minds in order to negotiate organic rhythms in our lives, then we too can see sights within beyond our wildest imaginations.

cruisin the good life,

George





Happy Highs

4 10 2013

Image 1“Defining the line between what is a healthy high and at what point the line has been crossed is the art form of being consciously bipolar.” pg 77 of my book Living Out of Darkness.

Happy Day, Happy Boy, ruff ruff, wanna run run run.  So I did, sort of, I rode.  Managing Happy highs can be at times just as perilous as extreme lows.

Today was not a good day to pull out the credit card and go online shopping.  The current obsession with crystals was tempting, but I resisted.  In the past, not so much.  I was way to ADD, in a good way to calm down, so I went with it.  Jumped on my bike to go check the mail, which entailed a 10 mile bike ride.

Happy Highs —-> Exercise!  (in moderation).

Yes it is annoying, exercise but not too much, stay away from wallet, watch the mind spin, etc.

But.  I’ve stayed healthy and thoroughly enjoyed my day.  The exercise endorphins have kicked in, Mozart is blasting way, and looking forward to a good swim later.

Peace!!!

geo





Tears Heal

1 10 2013

Tears

When I gently guide myself thru a rough patch, tears can be a good sign.

?

Yesterday Rocky today tears?

Yup.

When I’ve been thru a stretch of high stress work or life, and my mind is on obsessive spin cycle, or sleeplessness, etc., tears can sometimes indicate, i’m getting ok again.

When I learned how to be crazy as a child, I learned a “survival identity”.

Stop crying or I’ll give you something to cry about.

As an adult it is much easier to ignore mental pain, and just get on with reality, take care of work/life/family demands to provide food and shelter.

But what if the crisis ends, if real world demands drop off a bit, and I actually have a moment to breathe, or allow myself a moment to catch up internally?

I usually go thru phases, get thru the stress, spin down, sleep, have a really good day, and then anxiety hits.

This is a tricky slope in dealing with mental waves, bipolar disorder, and continuous sobriety.

The anxiety, after a really good day, after a series of really bad daze, needs to be dealt with carefully, inside out.

First I acknowledge it.  Yesterday, nothing was wrong in my world, but I felt squirrelly.  It would have been easy to make a lot of unhealthy choices.

It would have been easy to dismiss it and get busy with anything.

When I have the luxury of time, to breath in my anxiety, I do.

Why?!!!

Overtime, years in fact, of this practice, has lead to a deeper calm inside, less of a reaction to stressful situations while they happen, less need for poor choices in situations I want to run from etc.

Tears, are an indicator, I feel safe enough to feel, and safe enough to decompress, and catch up with unprocessed sensitivity, reactions, visceral response to human experience in a mechanically operated, automated, corporate environment, techo fast world.

How natural is it for us to be human in our fast paced society?

How natural is it to be human, bottle up stress, and stuff it with more busy-ness?

Tears can heal, if allowed a moment to breathe.

George





Woo Woo Kindergarten

16 10 2010

Love.  Now.

If I only had two words I could take with me for the rest of my life to a deserted island in the sea.  These are the only two words I would ever need.

Love. Now.

Before I accepted the modern western science word and definition of bipolar disorder, manic depression, I came across writings about shamanism in literature and anthropology classes in college.

My internal experience was extremely dysfunctional, dark, and angry at the time.  I was less than a year out of the mental institute, daily user of marijuana, and binge drinking whenever I could afford it or b.s. my way into a party.

I was scared enough about being locked up again that I was somehow able to overcome the monsters inside me enough not to get fired at my job to support school and attend classes, but the inside of my head would have scared the psych ward.

Being hospitalized highlighted and traumatized the mental state I was in, yes it kept me physically safe from hurting myself, and gave my family a rest from dealing with me, but it really only gave me a hard “right turn here Clyde whack” (80’s Clint Eastwood movie reference) into desperately searching for a healing in my life.(which is all good now and I am extremely grateful for)(yes it took many years to see the good and come to the mental/physical healing conclusion in my being).

Where was I?  Oh yes, bipolar and shamanism.  I related to shamanism first, before I accepted the term and definition of bipolar.

The physical descriptions of weird behavior, muttering, isolation, non function in society, and leading ceremonies and strange combinations of physical objects or attire.

I actually laughed out loud and sprayed my coffee in the middle of a college class when I came across the description the first time in the book.

Why?

Cut and paste the previous paragraph of the physical description of shamans, attach my face to it and put it up as a poster boy for.

I never heard of the word shamanism, (I grew up in remote Alaska in the 70’s)(Parents didn’t “do” the sixties”)(translation-our American culture has evolved a lot, thank God)(I promise to cut down on parenthesis if they drive you nuts)(ok just one more I obviously have a lot to say today, I must be making up for my silent journey as of late.)

It wasn’t long after the seeds of shamanism were planted in my soul, that I sobered up by attending 12 step programs, and discovered positive metaphysics courses and teachers, which I have been devouring ever, sense.

Like any rambunctious puppy smelling out new adventures, I tried everything:  hence the words I use, woo woo, new age, tarot, psychic, channeling, angels, medicine cards, etc. etc. etc.

Sometimes I attended, sometimes I did it.  Startling enough I was actually really good at it, and could easily have pursued a career in it because people paid me and asked me to do it more. (huge side track I’ll write about some other time, quick answer: Bipolar/shamans, have inside track to the unseen/nonverbal world)

I quickly observed something though.

This might piss a few people off, but here goes;

It’s all about love; it’s all about now.

Every shamanic, voo doo, woo woo, psychic, you name experience I ever had, ALWAYS, always, always, led me back to the present moment life issues, and always the same way to heal the trauma revealed or energy to pursue the dream revealed was love.

So does that mean you don’t recommend following anything George?  Does that mean you should do nothing and just meditate in a room? Nope.  I tried that too.  In fact I even went to China to the ancient caves that the people before the Taoists meditated in and meditated there.

If I were to add a third word to my deserted island vocabulary it would be YES.

Explore everything, taste, feel, channel, listen, sing, play, express, receive.  It’s why we are here.  It’s why we created all these flavors on the buffet.

And if it becomes overwhelming, ungrounded, or scary in anyway,

Just re-member, the word, LOVE, and NOW.

Here is how:

Put your hands on your chest.  Breathe.  Keeping taking deep slow breaths until you feel calm, and ready to explore, yell, play, scream, dance, cry, feel, work, or what ever appears next in your dance of life.

Luv yas,

George

 





Honoring Stillness

13 09 2010

I love being bipolar.  24/7, maybe not, but are there parts of the cycle that I feel deeper and deeper in love with?  Yes.  This is why I always encourage people to go after their dreams.  How cliché George.  Go after your dreams, doesn’t matter, big step, little step, no matter, think obsess, dedicate energy every chance you can in your dream.  WHY?

My low lows, have been replaced with a buoyancy.   When I contemplate and trace it back, when I question my quietness and my stillness, I realize it’s because irregardless, of all that I am/am not/do/don’t do, I’ve accomplished dreams that matter to me.  This has given me a quiet inner strength, which even my own dark withdrawn moodiness at times can no longer seem to penetrate.  Does anyone with bipolar reading this know the power of this?  What a relief it is to know, the dark empty times I used to fear, have transformed into a quiet stillness.  I don’t feel the need to force myself to do anything.  What is also amazing is when I really allow myself to be inside this quiet, and I begin to question the depth of it, a part of me opens up to insights about life which I’m not always able to capture, but I know it is what allows me to drop into a deep nurturing space when I chose to be around others.  It also allows me to sort out times when I’m the complete opposite.  Some coworkers actually expected me to go to work bearing gifts for putting up with me over the summer(not a bad idea from time to time, I’ll bring some bribes next time up).

What I love about my continuing journey with bipolar, having survived the darkest of years, is the quiet stillness which can exist in the same trails inside of me that used to be treacherous.  I can now look at the realities, my dreams and yearnings created through shear stubbornness, and know that what I wanted most for myself and others with this gift, was a trail hacked through the wilderness, bread crumbs of a way, captured in a book.  Is what I wrote the final word on bipolar, not by a long shot, it’s barely a ruff draft on a napkin, what matters, is that I took my best shot, at creating another method for transforming the gift of bipolar disorder, into an opportunity.  And the biggest reward I receive is affirmation.  From time to time someone sends an email, posts on facebook, amazon or itunes a review or comment and my stillness deepens.  I’ve completed a sacred cycle.  I’ve honored what appeared to be dark in me, until I heard and shared the gifts, by sharing the gifts others have received the benefit, some agree, some discard, some are grateful.  Each revolution has emptied a void of darkness in me, and filled it with a stillness.

Thank God for stillness, thank God for the ability to dream,

George








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