Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Sleep solutions. More relaxation music that works

Well. It's been a while since my last post. A lot has been going on, and I've been on both ends of a few rapid cycles since I last wrote, but I can't really be bothered to rehash. Might as well note, though, that yes- I was tipping into mania when I wrote that last post. Quite noticeably. But I guess it's alright, since I'm still here now and doing okay.

Sooo anyway, a couple of posts ago I wrote about Sounds to help you sleep, pointing out some websites that I've found to be helpful in that regard. And using Sitemeter (a simple, free gadget I'd recommend to anyone just venturing into websites or blogging) I noticed that I actually dO have a precious few people checking out my half-assed attempt at a blog! About half of the entry points are from Google searches for sleep sounds, solutions, bipolar + sleep, or some other such combination of search terms.

It definitely is an issue plaguing a big ol' bunch of us, eh?
There are a few things I could add at this point, but tonight I am just going to note one more helpful site:

www.shuteye.com --> Soothing voice lulls you softly into slumber with progressive muscle relaxation and mental relaxation techniques.

*** More specifically: www.shuteye.com/sleep-solutions/relaxation-techniques.aspx

I would recommend trying both of these techniques. They really do work wonders for relaxation. Might even be helpful during those episodes of agitation, and not just for sleep purposes. It follows that plan that we always aim for, that people tell us to follow- that whole "Just stop your brain from thinking so much, and you'll fall asleep!" idea... but actually made doable with a little audio help. The soft voice is accompanied by lovely background music, and her words carry your mind away from your day's thoughts to a pleasant, cushioned resting place just for you. There is an additional 20 minute clip of relaxation music you can listen to after you've tried the mind and body relaxation exercises and it is quite beautiful as well.

I am listening to the music now, and I think it is working its magic already.
Good night. :)

----- Current Medication and Mood-Meter Reading -----
Am back off the 'emergency' Zyprexa (and am consequently feeling much better, or more "me" again). Still taking Zoloft in the mornings, a Klonopin in the evening, but now just half a prescription sleeping pill if I can't sleep at bedtime. Yes, most of the time I do take that half-pill. After a few wild emotional pendulum swings during the last month or two, I think I am currently feeling relatively comfortable and stable.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Party-tipping into Hypomania? (such relief! but ok, I should be careful)

Partied like there was no tomorrow last night. In the late afternoon, the little halloween kiddies were parading by saying "trick-or-treat!" as politely as they could. Gave out candies, relived my childhood for a couple of hours, then later ended up going out for some drinks with mates. There was a big bar relaunch/opening my friend invited us to, and it turned out another friend was DJ-ing at a Halloween party at another club. Felt quite VIP making the rounds! The night went on much longer than I had expected it to (was honestly planning to be home by 10pm), leading on to karaoke, then a sheesha bar, then another friend's bar/club... Staying out so late probably wasn't the healthiest thing to do, but I did have a good time. Met lots of new people, made some business connections and hung out with old friends too, bringing some nostalgia into the mix.

This morning (yes I was out late) was the first time in a long time that I fell asleep without the help of any pills. So my question to myself right now is- am I slightly manic right now, and should I be watchful of that? I could sleep, but perhaps I was just exhausted from the excessive partying. I do need some more sleep tonight and am looking forward to that, but I've been feeling surprisingly pleasant today despite the large amount of alcohol I consumed throughout the course of the night. A little dehydrated, but that is the extent of my hangover. I was out the night before as well with old bosses, clients and workmates, and was also out on Saturday for two big Halloween parties...

Either I have so enjoyed spending time with my friends that I'm just feeling healthier and better, or I could be teetering into Hypomanic Zone. I suppose I should be wary of that. I am so sO glad not to be feeling like a turd on a stick anymore, but I could easily crash and burn if I don't take it easy so--- Yes, I should be watchful is the answer to my own question. Regardless of whether I'm a bit manic or not. But still. Thank goodness I don't feel like a Munch painting today... Was very much in need of a break.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Sounds to Help you Sleep... some websites I like

My goodness, the bipolar mind can really spin itself into a frenzy sometimes, eh? (reviewing my last entry...)

Anyway, today I just wanted to mention a couple of helpful and natural tools I have found here on the Internet for those dreaded sleepless nights. I am curious as to what others find useful for getting to sleep, but I suppose I should wait on opening that Q up for discussion til (if/when) I have more readers. :)

These three sites have helped me on occasion:

1) www.librivox.org --> Have someone read a story to you until you nod off into dreamland.
Perhaps it is a comfort based on nostalgia, but this has helped me sometimes. Volunteers reading aloud works in the public domain. Here you can find some old goodies from childhood to get your imagination painting pictures like they used to, with stories such as The Secret Garden or The Wind in the Willows. You can find works by Dostoyevsky, Hemingway, Flaubert, Tolstoy, or if you prefer, de Tocqueville, Thoreau, Machiavelli, Kant, Nietzsche... or you can even find Einstein's Theory of Relativity, Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, or audio versions of amendments to The Constitution. Plenty of everything for whatever floats your boat, and for whatever you're in the mood for that day.

2) www.live365.com --> Internet Radio.
There are some soothing music channels on this site that can aid in relaxation. Channels such as Healing and Relaxation, Meditation Music, or Econocast with nature sounds... pretty new-agey, I know, and not of my usual music genres but these can help nonetheless. Of course, this site also has loads of channels encompassing almost every other type of music you can imagine, so there is a lot of mood-boosting to be found here.

3) www.soundsleeping.com --> "Relaxing music, sleep aids, anxiety reduction, relaxation tools"
Here you can find an array of sleep-inducing music to download as well -- including music with 'delta waves' (slow, low frequency waves which apparently correspond with your brain's deep sleep mode). There's a cool tool here with separate volume and pan knobs with which you can, for example, listen to birds chirping quietly over the lulling sound of a babbling creek. Or crickets with rain. Or windchimes and the ocean. Or you can sit back and close your eyes to just the crackling of a bonfire, which I personally like to do from time to time (although I'd prefer the real thing...!).

Hope these help!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

A Wheel Spinning Without a Reason

Sometimes I wonder what life would be like if…
…what? I don’t know how I would finish that sentence, but I do know that the beginning of that sentence churns around in my head more often than I’d like it to. It is a question without a question. Not a statement, not a query – it is nothing more than the beginning of… what?

I don’t think I would live life any differently if I were to go through it again, despite the uncomfortable and trying periods I have been through. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today. Not to say that life is currently perfect, nor do I expect it to be, but it could have been a lot worse. And that is not the only reason I believe I would follow the same paths that brought me here if I were given the choice again.

I don’t know. I don’t know what I am asking, I don’t know what I am thinking, I don’t know what I am looking for. It is just a meaningless, spinning wheel without a machine attached, and that can be so irritatingly uncomfortable at times. I don’t feel that way all the time, though, and knowing that does help me to get through the days when I do.

But still… sometimes I wonder…

I feel an itch to think or act or learn or speak but I am not sure what about. Some days there are too many things to do or learn or say to even attempt to do them all, but sometimes I have that burning need to do something, and I just don't know what that something is.

So what does that mean? And what does it mean that on these particular days I just have to wait it out until I feel comfortable again? I fill that time with whatever I can find, but it does not satisfy me. I just have to wait until the edginess wears off and I feel in line with myself again.

What does that mean? And what is it that I wonder? I wonder that. But that is not an answer. Or rather, that is not the answer. But what is? And what the hell is my question?

Why is it that I feel so uncomfortable? And how will I ever know the answer if I don’t even know the question? What is it I am looking for? Will I ever know?

I wonder... what? What? What is it that I wonder? What??

Friday, October 26, 2007

Bipolar / Manic / Depression / ADHD Blog Beginnings... Well, here goes.

My first post. My first blog ever, really.

I am not sure what triggered it, but I needed a place to vent, muse, collect information, store helpful tips... And so here we find ourselves. I have absolutely no idea whether this will remain my own private littering ground for the ramblings of my mind, or whether I will eventually grow this blog into something that may be helpful to others, but I do hope it is the latter.

I suppose that the usual way of going about this would be to introduce myself. But I'm not really in the mood today, so I'll leave that for another day. Today I will just say hello.

----- Current Medication and Mood-Meter Reading -----
Anxious, agitated, worried, a bit sad... I didn't forget to take my Zoloft this morning, and I already took my nighttime Zyprexa and Klonopin a while ago. Perhaps the jitters have calmed just a bit, but I am still feeling uneasy and uncomfortable in my own skin. (I am back on the Zyprexa. I hate how it makes me sleep for 10-12hrs straight, but I have to admit it does usually slow the mind enough to sleep. A last resort when sleeping pills don't work. I still don't like it though. But anyway. More on that another time.)