Newer classes of medications can better treat individuals with severe mental illnesses and with far fewer side effects. Eighty percent of those suffering from bipolar disorder and 65 percent of those with major depression respond quickly to treatment; additionally, 60 percent of those with schizophrenia can be relieved of acute symptoms with proper medication.*
I had what I would call a normal day today, for anyone but myself. I got up at 7:30am and showered, and got ready to go to the Boulder farmer's market with Jamie and Jonas. They picked me up and we sauntered around the farmers market, sampling absolutely everything we could get our hands on. Cheeses, granolas, yogurt, nuts, soups, breads, dips and spreads, fruits and vegetables - I even tried three different kinds of radishes! It was absolutely glorious. Besides the tents offering foods, there were clothes, flowers, plants, jewelry, lotions and soaps, furniture and even a live band playing a music whose genre escapes me. Boulderites took over the street, people who thrive on organic only, vegan and vegetarian, and gluten-free foods. People dressed in tivas, khaki shorts and North Face fleece, along with college students representing CU in all their best black and gold, and the occasional homeless-looking person (who probably wasn't actually homeless, but enjoyed that Boulder accepted them looking that way anyway). I observed a marvelous culture all of it's own. From an anthropological standpoint, what I experienced today cannot be experienced anywhere else in the world and I truly appreciated the novelty of it. On top of all of the different people, dogs, and smells, the weather was absolutely amazing, high 70's in mid-October before noon in Colorado? Almost unheard of!
Then we walked around the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, which made me feel fancy. It is just as an art-exhibition should be, polished wood floors and whitewashed walls with paintings and drawings all hung up extremely level. There were three separate exhibits, one with abstracts in acrylic paint on wood planks, another in oil-paint of portraits of people in "inconvenient" poses, and the third was truly weird, a sort of schizophrenic group of pieces made out of lights and signs and just about anything one might find around the house. I know next to nothing about art, but I was very impressed with each exhibit.
Having not gone out and done something like that in awhile, and coughing my head off on top of that, I decided to go home and relax for awhile. I was able to sleep for a bit, but was awakened to a random phone call from "Rick," which I didn't answer, but I fell back asleep and dreamed about nothing but him, so I got up and called him back. He asked if I wanted to go see The Social Network, and with my huge crush on him, I'd have to be literally in a coma to say no to spending time with him. He picked me up, and we went to the theater to see what time the next showing was, and it wasn't for another hour and a half, so we went across the street to Chili's to get drinks. I had one glass of wine which got me quite tipsy (as I have mostly stopped drinking at home), and he had a few beers, and we just sat and talked. We went back to the theater in time to catch the previews which I had insisted upon seeing because I LOVE previews, and saw the movie. It was interesting. I tried really hard not to cough the whole time and just kept cramming cough drops into my mouth and I did pretty well. On the way home, we listened to some of the music he loves and he sang along, which made my heart do flip-flops. I really like listening to him sing.
All in all, a pretty good day. No real conflicts of mood and no events to alter my mood. At no point did I feel giddy, overexcited or euphoric, just very even, which is good. My only issue is how confused and uncertain I feel about this guy. Any time I spend time with him, I'm reminded of how much I like him! I suddenly feel so shy around him! And that's not really like me! I'm generally loud and boisterous about how I feel about any guy, and don't stop until I get what I want or am brutally rebuffed. Ironically, I think I've learned my lesson about that kind of behavior and am working really hard on not acting that way anymore, and I find it to be much more difficult than just being straightforward and honest. I hate playing "the game." I've told many people that I'd rather just state how I feel and get it out there, or make the first move, than have to wait around not knowing. Also, I'm finding it very hard to just be his friend. I asked him about his dating situation, and he was totally honest with me, and I could just feel my cheeks and neck turning red the way they do when I suddenly receive information that upsets me. I'm confused - I don't know whether to just make a reasonable effort to be and stay friends with him, or to have no contact with him at all so that I don't have to watch him date other girls. I'm leaning towards the friend side, because I've had a good experience with being friends with a guy with whom I'd like to have more and having it turn out in my favor. On the other hand, I have that tiny expectation in the back of my mind that maybe it will happen that way in the future and I really don't want to be disappointed when it doesn't happen.
I don't think I'd be writing and posting all of this if it weren't for the fact that I feel like I have no one to talk to about it. I run the very high risk that he'll read it (and I was absolutely LOST in trying to read him today, for whether or not he reads this) but I need to get it out of my head so that I don't ruminate on it. I really, really miss having a best friend. Normally I'd call her or be texting her all night, and there's a big hole inside me where normally I'd feel that connection. It's very uncomfortable to not have a sounding board when I feel like I've had one most of my life, whether it was specifically her or not.
I've been trying to focus on being my own best friend the way my therapist suggested a couple weeks ago. I'm a much better friend to others than I am to myself. It's very hard to just do away with all the self-criticism that's piled up over the last like 10 years or so. It's hard to see myself in a different way than I've always looked at myself, and I think that's why it's nearly impossible to be one's own best friend. I think I may be doomed to seek approval from the rest of the world forever.
Also, I'm complacent. I don't like it. I have grown accustomed to being able to fall back on my family, my parents, namely, and I think it's time for that to stop. While it's good to go to them for emotional support, it's not good to be even somewhat dependent on them as I am now. I think I have a massive amount of fear of losing their financial support, but I've done it before and I need to get ready to do it again.
Okay, bedtime. Or vegetation time, I guess. Considering my activity level of late, I had a pretty exciting day today. I have to get ready to do it all over again tomorrow.
Oh yeah, and NAMI - National Alliance on Mental Illness - actually had a booth at the farmer's market today. I was impressed!!
*"NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness | About Recovery." NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness - Mental Health Support, Education and Advocacy. Web. 16 Oct. 2010. <http://www.nami.org/Template.cfm?Section=About_Recovery&Template=/TaggedPage/TaggedPageDisplay.cfm&TPLID=23&ContentID=34759>.