Posts Tagged ‘Brain’

So I seem to be entering the next step up in my mental health cycle.cyclesteps

I shouldn’t be surprised – the timing is just about right for it.Cyclestairsman

This means I’m now even a little less ready to deal with the real world and a little more prone be irritable about nothing. I am more likely to ‘latch on’ to something and obsess on it, or gnaw on it in my head.  My general ability to relate and adapt to situations shrinks and I lose even more ability to focus.

And Yet….cycle mantunnel

This is the same time when, if I’m writing, I’m able to push out a couple thousand words in a sitting. I’m able to just immerse myself in the creative and produce. I seems that is also true with the more hands on projects I’ve now returned to, having joined the SCA. Tackling logistical problems, is being slippery, but carrying out the implementation of the solutions to those problems, is very controlled.

cyclefallingrockA life time ago, when I wasn’t on medication to help level my brains response and reactions, this would be a very bad time for attempting physical manifestations of my creative impulses. My anger control was shot, so the slightest issue would drive me into a state that resulted more likely in smashing my project into a twisted lump. I couldn’t make the connection to the image in my head and the way to manifest it in reality, and I would deal with self-esteem issues when I failed to manifest the thought into the physical.

Now, I have the ability to lean back, sigh, and tap my fingers on my temple, as I try to make the brains desire and the fingers skill mesh. I can struggle through and either try, and try again, or know enough to turn my attention to a different project in hope of finding some satisfaction from that one. This ability really changes the game for me. Now I’m not saying that it is easy – it is still hard, when the cycle is high, to fuse desire, intellect, and function – but it is now at least possible.

I can, with the help of the meds, turn the negative obsessive nature into a laser beam directed at one single project. I’ve also found music helps me stay relaxed, loose, and focused during this stage – sooth the savage breast and all.  I can even switch from one project to another. What I can’t do is come out of the intense focus on making a thing or writing a scene, into the real world. It’s a lot like waking for me, their is disruption, befuddlement, and a jarring sense of disconnection. Luckily my wife is used to this and waits while brain scrambles to put context to a wider reality.

2015-11-22 15.20.16 B
So I am progressing on my edits – just got chapter 18 and 19 for the next White Dragon Black novel ‘ Bindings & Spines’ this morning so, after my morning social media routine, I will have to take a look at them. I finally figured out how to put together a tiny pomander bead and actually implemented it yesterday – I need to recreate the technique once more for the project – and I started on making a face in one of the bone beads I’m making for the rosary challenge I signed myself up for. 2015-11-21 16.27.29

So I’m cresting and plunging to a degree, as the waves of my mental disorders slap the little dingy I’m stuck riding this life on.cyclestorm

I’m still seated however, and the view, once you get over the initial panic, is pretty spectacular.

Yeah – having one of those mornings.angryman

I’ve already bitched, moaned, and sniped. I’ve been depressed and just figuring it was easier to toss important things ‘out the window’ as it were.

I really had no patience to write a blog post – and what’s the point of doing it anyways. I certainly couldn’t think of an interesting topic to share from my pointless, and pathetic life.dont_even_talk_to_me_coffee_mug-r114ccca9f9f54f3b97fd89c0ba66affa_x7jg5_8byvr_1024

So I decided to write about the fact that I didn’t want to write a blog post. That’s what you get for following a blogger with bipolar, I guess. Seen those coffee mugs with the levels on them about when to talk – I think there should be stickers t go on the foreheads of people that do the same sort of thing – or maybe more like the radiation stripes that give colour change to indicate expose. If those strips did exist mine would be showing a red line this morning.

hulksmashThe problem with waking up in this sort of mood already, besides not being fair to my wife, is that now I have t expect the rest of the day will be wasted. A long drawn out day of frustration and boredom. I’ll decide not to do projects I care about least I screw them up – because, you know, I’m a useless failure. Or something will go wrong and my irrational angry will take hold and I’ll smash like the Hulk.

Sometimes I can actually find something to do, and do it well. This can either help draw me out of the episode I awoke to, and sometimes not – because mental follows no set rules and is not here for your understanding or convenience. 

So there is my boring, rant on this morning where I entered reality more cantankerous and self abdicating than usual – which really is saying a lot.brain -outof order

So I have this theory – you are born with ‘sleep cells’.


sleeprechargeThey are like fat cells, only they store sleep. The human body only has so many of them however. Now they can be recharged but once they are truly burnt out – unlike fat cels – they are gone. This explains why in our teens, and twenties, we can go, go, go, forever, without sleep – and not really notice. We crash, eventually, recharge and get up and go again. What we don’t know is that when we are doing this, some of the sleep cells have been totally burned out to maintain the sleepless activity. Then, suddenly, in our thirties, we can no longer stay up all night, all weekend, and still function during the week. We keep needing more sleep to function as well as we did only a few years before. This is because the number of sleep storing cells have been radically reduced. And if you’re a parent …. Forget about it!

There are many stages of sleep, but generally they have broken it down to four parts. The ‘just drifting off to sleep’, the ‘in sleep starting to rest’, the ‘deep sleep’, and the most well known REM stage. Now everyone thinks REM is the most important. For a while, it was believed if you didn’t get REM you would go crazy! This isn’t true though, REM is not the most important, nor will not getting it drive you crazy.

Don’t get me wrong – REM sleep is important and it can really effect you life… but we will get back to that.

sleepchildThe most important stage of sleep, actually, is probably the ‘deep sleep’, or the delta sleep. This is when your body and mind are, essentially, shut down. This is the sleep that is hardest to wake someone from and, if you manage it, the sleeper will wake groggy and take time to ‘activate’ – essentially because they were, in fact, shut down and are rebooting the system.
Scientist have discovered that delta sleep is when hormones related to growth are released in children and young adults. It has to do with proteins being broken down during that stage of sleep, and that protein, is what builds and heals the body. So during this time is when you also deal with damage from stress and ultraviolet rays and well, life. Now here is a scary quote from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke web site,

“Activity in parts of the brain that control emotions, decision-making processes, and social interactions is drastically reduced during deep sleep, suggesting that this type of sleep may help people maintain optimal emotional and social functioning while they are awake.”Insomnia

So if you don’t get enough delta or ‘deep’ sleep, your ability to have healthy emotional and social function decrease.
Now I’m going to let you guess what kind of sleep I don’t get enough of…

sleepscreamI wake often from REM during the night, I can sleep for 7 or 10 hrs a night, and I still wake exhausted. I don’t ever get that ‘rise feeling rested and content’ crap that others go on about. When people say ‘I had the weirdest dream the other night’ or ‘ my dream felt so real’ sometime I just want to back hand them through a wall.
I ALWAYS have ‘weird’ dreams. There are no other type of night for me but one filled with emotionally wrought, twisted, highly tactile, stress filled, negative, often dangerous, ‘adventures’. Trust me, it isn’t something you want… in fact, when describing them to people, I’m often told that what is considered a nightmare.

sleepimpSo here we are back to REM sleep – see told you. So yeah, REM is important. If your sleep is falling down on it’s job to ‘repair’ you body from stress by not getting enough delta sleep, and then pounds you with stressful REM sleep. The thought of going to bed is not always a pleasant one – often, because you know it will only lead to having to wake up, numerous times, from a hell your own brain cooked up for you.

Now here’s a fun fact – Seroquel, one of the medications I’m on to help stay somewhat sane, is known to cause more vivid, warped, dream states….yay.

About two years ago I had a good dream – first I could remember. I woke from this pleasant, soft bunny kisses, and hugging flowers dream. sleepbunny
First thing I did was curse. WHY? Because of two reasons: One, I now knew what everyone else was getting that I never did, Two, I knew the next nights horrors would only be worse because of the comparison.

Sometimes I think I should just stop calling it sleep, and refer to it as ‘Wes World’

sleep freddy


rejection-letterThese past few days I’ve been getting strong signals from my Muse. I have a short story set in my White Dragon Black world that is a good 60% there, which has a strong actual ‘detective’ feel to it. I’ve been hoping for another of those as I’m longing to to submit to the ‘The Strand Magazine’. They are a long running detective magazine that says they take paranormal. I don’t know if I’d get in, but it would be nice to write something that has a firm enough detective vibe to submit. I’m not the sort to wilt under rejection; better a rejection from such a long standing magazine than a ‘never know’.

zombie-house1I am also getting more of the zombie novel I started, and I think it might have to come out of my skull before any further WDB novels do. I even have something I never had before – meat for the ending. There is a travel component to the tale… an almost quest like story of getting to a house. I never knew why before. I knew it was the protagonists parents house, I even knew they had died a bit before the outbreak but I never knew just why my protagonist wanted to go there. They would have to pass a lot of other places that would, in truth, be just as good, or maybe better, than this house he was gunning for. Just the other day, as I was driving (when many a revelation or inspiration hits), my Muse showed me the why. I got the moment in my soul, saw the scene, and understood. It isn’t really surprising to me. I knew that, dotted throughout the story, had to be snippets of his old life, memories and the like. But now I understand, and I love it. It is both sentimental and twisted. It makes you call into question all that happens during the trip, and yet… and yet, if I write it just so, it will touch the heart.

Writers-BlockBoth of these sound pretty good, right? Two projects to delve into – and I can, in fact, write a short while writing a novel. I should already have aching finger tips, and an extra numb ass!  So why don’t I? Because my brain is dumb!

I’m rearing to go, got the material, got the connection to my muse, and yet… when I open the screen to write, my brain freezes up, pulls in on itself, and stubbornly shakes it’s head.
Stupid brain.

I’m not sure if I should be gentle and slowly try to ease it towards letting words trickle out, hoping the trickle becomes a flood, or if I should bludgeon it with a sledgehammer until it cracks and gets swept aside under the sudden deluge of creativity.

I just have to hope my Muse is patient with me, and understands that it is my fault I’m not writing.

crazy headSo with my fall/winter cycle of ‘crazy’ ramping up I am faced with dealing  with many issues. It is a stressful time just dealing with my own head and the supposition of what might come tomorrow. This is my longest cycle of three; The first happens around end of January and goes for roughly 2 months, the next is in July and lasts around 3 weeks – but it comes on fast and hard, the last is the longest – starting sometime in October and going until -luckily- just a bit before Christmas. The severity of this one can vary wildly – from long but ‘Not too noticeable’ to ‘Shit, I have to carve my own brains out to stop this!’ Not knowing which it will be doesn’t help the aggravation of dealing with it.


crazy redSo among the above stated issues, the bad things about my cycle is a lack of control on my emotion. Now when I say emotion, I mean the base emotion that always throbs inside me, not the other myriad of emotions I’ve slowly taught myself to understand and get a good glimpse of how they might feel. No I’m talking about the ones that have always existed; anger, frustration, and anger. You’re right that is only one because frustration really is nothing but a mutated form of anger. When my cycle is in full swing, the irrational and illogical anger comes boiling up to the surface. The medication helps – boy howdy does it help – but it isn’t enough always to contain it during a cycle. So I am all too often in a state of clenched teeth, and have to be hyper aware of my reactions. When I’m alone at home, it isn’t too bad because my wife knows my snapping at her has nothing to do with her. When I’m out, in public… well let’s just say I often step outside to get a few slow deep breaths of fresh air.

crazy distractI also have focus issues, It is hard to remember what I was doing or why. I get lost in a flood of racing frothing thoughts. My mind is bombarded with too much input, noise, ‘voices’, song snippets, images, idea’s, worries, and memories. I get tired faster and mentally worn down because of this constant torrent. When it’s bad – I need to block it all out and I simply sit down in front of the TV and watch … whatever! As long as it has moving lights and sound, it can block out the cacophony inside my skull and that is a good thing.crazy reality

There is a good thing among all this negative – my Muse can use this open current to feed me. Among the flood of other crap, I get story. There are images from the next novel, there are words in the mess that make sense, and, through the deluge, there is a world flashing by in pieces.
This is a refuge, this is an escape… literally islands I can dwell upon as the waves crash against the rocks. Although it is difficult to focus, if I can grab a bit of the written world, I can submerse myself in it, block out all other noise and matter, and find relief in the story channeling through me.

crazy-playcrazy notThis has begun – and not a moment too soon. It has been a long time, far too long, since I have written. I relish the idea of living in a different world right now. For all too often no matter how dark and chaotic that ‘make believe’ world is, it is still better than what my own mind is creating for me.