Underneath my yellow skin

Category Archives: Self-Care

Same song, same verse

I hereby declare that I am formally and officially SICK OF THIS SHIT. 

I’m not dying, but it’s incredibly tedious, frustrating, and exhausting. I have crud in my nose and throat, and my ears and scabby and burning. If I’m not better in a few days, it’s to the doctor for me. That’s a big deal! I hate going to the doctor (and I irrationally blame my sickness last year on my clinic visits), but I hate being sick more. Here is Shironeko and buddy enjoying spring. Here, we still have snow (which makes me happy, but no one else).

In sickness and health

I’m slowly getting better, but I’m fighting off an extraneous sickness. My ears aren’t as crusted over as they were before, but they’re still not clear, either. I’ve been sleeping a ton, which is never a good sign. I did go to taiji on Monday, and while I took it easy, I was pretty tired by the time I got home. It’s snowing, by the way. It started yesterday (Monday) while I was in class, and it’s still going. It’s not much snow, maybe two to four inches, but it’s making me happy.

I need to start cooking. I hate that, but it’s true. I’m starting to have more sensitivities past dairy/gluten, and buying pre-made food just isn’t cutting it any longer. I’ve been playing a shit-ton of a Metroidvania-style game called Dead Cells, and I’ll write a post on it later.

I’m sleeping a ton, which makes me worried that I’m actually getting sicker. I don’t sleep much when I’m healthy, so I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop. In the meantime, my motivation to do much of anything, which isn’t high to begin with, and that’s an indication that I’m still not well yet.

Anyway, here’s Northernlion playing Dead Cells.

The slog

Day whatever of being sick. I’ve lost count and my motivation to care. My left ear is still achy and scabby (so gross!), and the toilet is my best friend right now. I’m wondering if I have a sensitivity to something other than dairy and gluten, and if I had a guess, it’d be corn. Glands still tender, and I’m drinking so much tea/juice/ginger ale/water, I should just be floating around. I have writer’s block, which is frustrating the hell out of me. Everybody knows when you’re sick, chicken noodle soup is good for what ails you. Here’s Maangchi’s version.

A vague plan for better living

all tuckered out.
Were I so cute!

I’m fat. I have been most of my life except for the times when I was anorexic/bulimic. I’ve dealt with eating disorders (ED) for most of my life, and any time I try to lose weight in a sensible way, I plunge deeply into the abyss. No matter how reasonable I am when I first start, my ED-thinking takes over, and I end up in the same bad place. I will fully admit my desire to lose weight has always been for vanity reasons. I don’t give a shit about the health benefits–it’s all about looking in the mirror and feeling gross.

I’ve spent twenty years getting fatter and fatter. I lost weight more than once during that time, but it never lasted. One time it was because I was trying out antidepressants (for a second round), and they were making me feel deeply suicidal. I lost nineteen pounds in two months because every minute I was fighting the urge to kill myself. When I told my doctor, she kinda laughed and said, “Well, whatever it takes” or something like that. I immediately changed doctors because even though she was joking, that was completely inappropriate. Quick side note: SSRIs work well for me on the first go-around (Prozac, Zoloft, Celexa) for about a year. Then, the effect wears off, and I switch. When I re-try the same drug, it makes me suicidal. I don’t know why, but it’s highly unfortunate.

Anyway, I got off the Celexa right quick, and I stopped feeling suicidal, but I also regained the weight. I’m the fattest I’ve ever been, and it’s way out of hand. I would have thought cutting out gluten and dairy would have led to natural weight loss, but my guess is it’s the rice. I’ve added it back into my diet, and it’s calorie-dense. Jasmine rice because it’s delicious. It also doesn’t help that I don’t cook and mostly rely on deli food. It’s not so bad when it’s the co-op, but when it’s Cubs? Yeah, not the healthiest food of all. Also, I gave up fruits for some years even though I love them because my mom was very rigid about them when I was growing up. I’ve started adding them back. I eat an orange every day because it’s good at easing aches and pains (as told to my taiji teacher from a weightlifter), and I try to eat other fruits. I have grapes in my fridge right now, but I haven’t been very good about eating them.

I’ve also decided I’m going to do the ‘add one healthy item a week’ thing with the hopes that snacking on healthy food will slowly overtake my desire to munch. Earlier, I cut out chips and popcorn, but I added them back for whatever reason. Side note: There are two ways to deal with cutting out ‘bad’ foods. One, cut them out completely. Two, slowly wean yourself off of them. I’m more of a number one kind of gal because if it’s not there, I can’t eat it. But, I’m nominally a grown-up now, so I’m going to try a combination of the two. One, once I’m done with my current bag of popcorn, I’m not going to buy any more chips/popcorn. Two, I bought individualized bags of baby carrots and a bottle of pickle spears. In theory, I’ll munch on those when I have an impulse for the salt. It’s kinda working, but we’ll see what happens once the munchies are gone.

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Aaaaaand sick again

Well, I’m sick again–to the surprise of exactly no one. I think it’s about 20% allergies and 80% a cold. Achy, alternating between freezing and burning up, scratchy throat that has me sounding like Barry White, and absolutely no energy. I’m tired and sad and grumpy, and I have no motivation to do much of anything. For today, here is ‘Die Anywhere Else’ from the Night in the Woods soundtrack. It’s one of the tracks I had to play in the game–i did not play it nearly this well. This is Alec and Scott, the two developers, playing the song.

Blah blah blah

I have another dentist appointment, something like the fourth one in four months.  The last was for a root canal, and this is for a filling. I have another one in a month for a cleaning, and it’s just too depressing to think about. I know it’s a natural consequence of not going to the dentist for years, especially when I have really shitty teeth, but it’s still frustrating to deal with. I’m trying to be equanimous about it, but it’s not easy. I know there’s nothing i can do about it, and I know it’s better to deal with them now than to wait on it, but it’s still not fun at all.

I’m also grumpy because we were supposed to have a foot of snow yesterday, and we got something like four 3.5  inches. 3.5 inches is not a foot! It’s better than nothing, of course, but it’s a bit frustrating that after the huge build-up, it amounted to much ado over nothing.

I’m also trying to find a new video game. I finished Night in the Woods (will write a post about it later), and it’s going to be difficult to find a game that resonates with me the way this game has. The funny part is that after my first playthrough, I was satisfied and liked the game, but I had real issues with certain aspects of it (including the ending and the big mystery), but then I saw Errant Signals’ video about the game, and he mentioned that it really benefits from another playthrough.

I saw a ton of things in his video that I hadn’t seen in my first playthrough, so I started another game. I made different choices, and I tried to be as observant as possible. I got a different ending of sorts, met more characters, got new scenes, and felt much better about the game as a result. Surely, I had seen almost everything, right? Yet, I still had over half the achievements to unlock, so there had to be more to find. What could I do but start a third playthrough? Which I did.

I don’t want to get into it much here because I will be writing a long-form piece about it later, but I have to say that this game burrowed its way deep into my heart, and I can’t let it go. I adore Mae Borowski the main character because she *is* me (or the me I was many years ago, although I wasn’t as mouthy as she was) in ways I’ll definitely explore later.

In the meantime, see Chloi’s review on the game. It’s pretty spot-on.

By the end of the third playthrough, I was firmly in love with this game, and it’s going to be difficult to find a follow-up game that will keep my interest the way this game has.

Oh, and the music is fucking fantastic. I actually bought the soundtrack, which I’ve never done before (for a game).

Anyway, I will be writing about it for Friday’s post. Keep an eye out for it.

Riding the Waves of Depression

I’m swimming in the sea of depression and riding the waves of crushing hopelessness. I’m having a hard time keeping my head above water, and some days, I don’t want to even bother. Today is one of that day. So, I’m just going to post a depressing video and hopefully wait it out.

I also have a doctor’s appointment to check my thyroid, lie about my depression, and maybe get my annual. Rightly or not, I relate getting really sick twice last year with going to the doctor, which makes me even warier of returning. Anyway, I hope it goes well. Here’s the depressing emo video.

Medium-grade depression

I’ve been depressed all my life for as long as I can remember. My mother talks about me being a happy child, but I don’t remember that at all. My first real memory is when I was seven. I realized I was going to die, and I jumped out of bed and ran screaming from the room. I fell into a deep depression that year (not because of that, though it didn’t help), and starting when I was eleven until roughly mid-thirties, I wanted to die every day of my life.

I never had the courage to kill myself, but I saw the opportunities everywhere I went. Driving was a struggle because I constantly had to stop myself from running into embankments and such. If I walked on a bridge, I thought about how I could throw myself off it. These weren’t conscious thoughts, but stray thoughts floating in and out of my brain. I had no control over them, and they felt as if they were driving me.

Sometime in my mid-thirties, I started to stop having suicidal thoughts. Or rather, suicidal impulses. I was still depressed, and I still hated my life, but I didn’t have to stop myself from driving into embankments any longer. Again, it wasn’t a conscious thought, but it just happened. I think it’s at least in part because of starting taiji, but whatever the reason, it was a welcome change.

Starting in my early forties, I began to stop having suicidal thoughts as well. Let me be clear. I’ve never loved life, and I doubt I ever will. But, it was a relief to stop having intrusive thoughts all the damn time. I downgraded my depression to low-grade, and I muddled on with my life.

Unfortunately, in the last few months, the depression has ramped up again. Not to the extent it used to be (which was crippling and chronic), but more than I’m comfortable with. Intrusive thoughts of hopelessness and self-disgust. Thinking that life is worthless and why am I alive. I don’t feel as if I’m contributing anything by being alive, and I have a hard time dragging my ass out of bed (off the couch) in the morning (afternoon).

I’m discontented with, well, everything. I was always the girl with so much potential, but my own self-doubt and loathing has held me back. I’ve always had great ideas, but major difficulties in implementing them. It’s part of the problem of being very intelligent, and that is NOT a humble brag. I never formed good work habits because school came easily to me. I work for myself, so I don’t have to stick to someone else’s timetable.

I need to figure out what I want to do with my life, and more to the point, I need to stick to something and give it more than the good old college try. It’s time to see what I’m made of–and maybe the depression will subside.

I Can Fly! Oh, Wait. No I Can’t.

I was taking out the trash the other night, and it was dark out. I do it late at night, and my front light isn’t working. I went to check the mail, and I didn’t notice there was a huge slick of ice in front of my mailbox. I noticed when my feet went up in the air, and I landed on my knees and night elbow. If you ever want to feel completely in your body, just fall. You will be aware of muscles you never knew existed before.

The pain was sharply intense, and I’m saying this as someone who slept through a recent root canal. I couldn’t believe how much it hurt–and how quickly the intense pain went away. I admit I stayed on the ground for a minute or so, but I soon got back on my feet and checked all my limbs for possible damage. My right elbow was scraped with a little blood, my left knee felt puffy and sore, and my right knee ached a bit, but that’s it.

Nothing was broken. Nothing was wrenched, twisted, or dislocated. I kept an eye on it the next day, and while I was achy (especially in my left knee. My poor knees. They can’t catch a break), nothing actively hurt. My left knee still feels bruised and a bit puffy, but it’s nothing I can’t handle.

I bring this up for a few reasons. One, I’m still clumsy. I still fall on the regular, though not as often as I used to. Two, it wasn’t my fault this time. The last time when I fell on the stairs while doing the laundry (or more accurately, on my way to doing the laundry), it was my own damn fault for reading my phone as I was walking. This time, however, there wasn’t much I could do because I simply didn’t see the ice in the dark. It helps me understand that sometimes, things do just happen. Three, I instantly relaxed as I was falling, and this is something I’ve noticed in the last few years. Yes, I still fall, but I’m more able to do what needs to be done to minimize the damage. It’s not even something I think about–I do it automatically.

It’s the reason I walked away from my minor car accident with nothing more than a big bruise on my stomach (from either the seat belt or the airbag). It’s the reason I only have bruises and aches after falling off ladders or on the ice as I most recently did. It brings me a small measure of comfort knowing that while I may still be clumsy and fall from time to time, I don’t have to take maximum damage from it.

It’s a revelation to me as someone who’s been clumsy all her life. Yes, I’m working on being more observant and trying not to run into things in the first place, but it’s nice to know that when I make a mistake, I won’t necessarily have to pay for it (too much).

Almost Recovered

I am pleased to say that I’m mostly recovered. My flu/fever symptoms are gone, and my sleep is shite again (a clear indication that I’m getting better). However, I’ve been having the chills on and off over the last couple days, so I’m keeping an eye on it. My knees hardly ache at all, and going to taiji class yesterday really helped. I have to remember that gentle movement on the daily is a good thing, even if I have no motivation to do it at the time.

This is the problem with having depression. Even when I know something is beneficial to me and that I’ll probably enjoy it at the time–it’s difficult for me to actually force myself to do it. The inertia is strong within me, and I can sit on my ass for hours on end without even thinking about it.

On a side note, I did a testing of all the new Diet Coke flavors and live-tweeted it. Take a look if you want a good chuckle. They’re not all linked because I included pictures, but just trawl around that time, and you’ll find them all.

TL;DR: Twitsted Mango is the shizznit.

Oh. I just remembered tomorrow (today when you read this) is going to be Valentine’s Day. Here’s my valentine for you.