"Don't tell God how big your storm is; tell your storm how big your God is."

I believe in God.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

How am I?

No doubt many of my readers know I live on the East Coast and are wondering how the storm affected me. While it hit my school area fairly hard, I came home ahead of it and it honestly barely touched here at all. Due to the lack of a public transportation system, however, I am kind of stranded here (if one can count being home with family as being stranded) for a while. Good time to be on medical leave.

Please comment and tell me how you are doing.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Heard Back from my Pain Doctor...

...and apparently I was never first on his list; I am fourth. I felt betrayed until my father suggested double checking my memory to see whether the doctor had actually ever said I was first or if I had just thought so. You know what? Looking back, I don't think my doctor ever said that I was first. Oh well. In any case, there will probably be an opening in the program for me in mid-November. Everybody is telling me to look on the bright side: that mid-November is not too far off and at least now I know roughly when I'll be going. Mid-November, however, is still way too far off for my liking.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

And...More Progress etc.

As of now, today, I can say and believe, "I am a good person who needs to work on x, y, and z" instead of, "I am a horrible person because of x, y, and z." The difference is and feels tremendous.

Also, I seem to be having some early bipolar symptoms again.

"If you're going through hell, keep on going...you might get out before the devil even knows you're there."

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


DISCLAIMER: I always struggle with whether or not to post things this raw and honest. I have decided to post this because it was life-altering, and a blog is the place to post such things. If you are easily judgmental and/or don't believe in therapy, please leave NOW.

Yesterday I made real progress in therapy. In fact, I think that that may have been the most productive single therapy session I've ever had. It was hard, but very, very good.

First we determined that I lean on other people so much--and yes, sometimes too much--because I do not really trust myself to be there for myself. We're not quite sure why that is yet, but we think it might stem from things that happened to me during childhood. My therapist said, however, that the best way to fix this situation is to focus on who I am now, not who I was then.

Talking farther, we discovered that I also expect all relationships--platonic and romantic--to end someday. That one is easier to explain: my two very much closest friendships both ended messily. Everybody loses a couple of friends over the years, but losing one or two out of five or ten is much less damaging than losing one's only two.

Somewhere along the way during the session, I broke down crying without knowing why. We made real progress, but it was very tough.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Thoughts on Last Night

So as I reassure myself that my other friendships are still in fine--or at least decent--shape, I have been asking myself what went wrong with the one I mentioned last night. I have a few ideas, which I am going to post today as a reminder to myself and a warning to others of what not to do to a friendship, and also just because I need to post them.

1. I met this friend through chronic pain, if you will: I introduced myself because I needed to use the banister to get down the stairs and she was standing in the way. From then on, we talked about chronic pain, and when the bipolar episode hit, we talked about that. I honestly cannot recall a single conversation--or even a single sustained moment of conversation--that was not about one of my health problems. DON'T DO THIS, people! I cannot emphasize that enough. Even in your time of need, even if the bulk of your conversation is about your problems (as is sometimes appropriate), find a way to insert bits of conversation about other things, for your sake as well as the sake of your friend and the friendship.

2. For a few different reasons, I do not have a phone number for this friend. (Yes, I will still call her a friend until further notice. Call it wishful thinking, but that is what I feel like doing about it.) As a result, I was dumping just as much on her as I was on my other friends, but with my other friends, it got diffused throughout the week. With this person, I saved it up and dumped it all on her at once. DON'T DO THIS EITHER, people! That can be overwhelming.

3. Above all, I treated this friend like an old friend when she was a new one. What I mean by this is that I had been leaning on her heavily when I was just getting to know her. The other friends on whom I had and have been leaning that heavily are friends I have known since last year, while I have not leaned on any other new friend that hard. Lesson learned: DO NOT TREAT NEW FRIENDS LIKE OLD ONES!

So what am I going to do about this situation? I plan to do absolutely nothing; I mean that, and I hope I can manage to keep to it. I will be polite, and friendly if she wants to be, but I will let her call the shots. Either I saved the friendship in time or I didn't; only time will tell.

Saturday, October 13, 2012


A lot has been happening to me recently. It's hard to find the words, but I know I will feel better (and probably lean less heavily on my friends, which would be a good thing) once I blog about it.

I am in the middle of a bipolar episode. For the past week or two (so hard to remember dates etc.!) I have been dealing with bouts of depression, mania, and the occasional psychotic symptoms--sometimes all three in one day.

Then tonight I had a bit of a "falling out" with a friend. Something she said made me realize fully that there was a problem in our relationship. (I had suspected there might be for a while now.) When I gently "teased" her, she told me that she felt I was leaning on her too much.

Especially considering my mental state right now, I am extremely proud of my reaction to that information. Totally calmly, I said "OK. Thank you for letting me know; call me out on it next time." Then we went to pray. After evening prayers, I caught up to her as she was leaving and said, "I just wanted to say I'm sorry and I hope I've saved the friendship."

So now we will wait and see. I have a few theories about what went wrong, but none that I want to share right now. I just wanted to tell about the incident, and the episode in general.

Thursday, October 4, 2012


Last night I was feeling really good, so I let myself act much more like a normal person than I should have. I criss-crossed a room three or four times and had short conversations standing up. I do not feel good anymore, and it's just not fair!

On the plus side, I ran into a friend from last year while riding a bus today. Always nice!

This is a very hard road to walk, but ultimately I believe that God is good to me, giving me little good things that, while not quite balancing out the bad, make it a little bit easier to bear.

Besides, to quote Steven Curtis Chapman (yes, I know I have used this quote before): "God is God, and I am not; I can only see a part of the picture he's painting."

May my picture include beauty from which I can draw strength.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Mixed Feelings

Upon reflection on my situation, and particularly on the medical leave, I feel a jumble of feelings, some positive and others not so much. I guess this is natural. Right now I am feeling down, but here is a list of what I have felt and why:

1. Relief: Because school was so painful and because it was so impossible for me to keep up, I feel relieved to have that weight off my shoulders.

2. Happiness: Honestly, it is nice not having to worry about exams etc. I would take my old life back in a heartbeat, but if I have to live as I do right now, I will take my happiness where I can get it.

3. Sadness: I feel sad about having to give up my classes. I chose them carefully, daydreamed about them ahead of time, and until it became too hard for me to keep up, I was legitimately enjoying them.

4. Guilt: Whenever I catch myself enjoying my time off, I feel guilty and wonder whether I have the right to enjoy myself given the circumstances.

So there you have it: two positives, two negatives. Truly mixed feelings.


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About Me

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I am a bipolar, Jewish young adult (had my Hebrew birthday, the one I count, and turned 23 this past January) who also suffers from Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy. I love life and I live for my best friends: they are my purpose and my reason for trying so hard. I remain passionately devoted to those I love; I will not let my disorders make me totally self-centered. I like to read, write, and sew. My Rabbinical school plans did not work out, and I am now hoping to go into the field of Early Childhood Education. Please note: I am currently maintaining only Carried in His Hands. Enjoy!