Jumpiness and Nerves

Back to the NaBloPo­Mo prompts:
What do you do to cope when you’re ner­vous?

I have a whole mess of diag­noses, includ­ing post-trau­mat­ic stress dis­or­der and social anx­i­ety dis­or­der, so I feel jumpy and ner­vous fair­ly often. I’m on med­ica­tion that helps, and I have Ati­van that I can take if I must for pan­ic attacks. But I try real­ly hard to use the Ati­van, because 1) it can be addic­tive; and 2) it makes me sleepy. It makes far more sense to take advan­tage of the biofeed­back tech­niques I learned years ago to try to get my heart rate and breath­ing under con­trol. Cog­ni­tive behav­ioral ther­a­py has also giv­en me some valu­able ways to exam­ine the thought pat­terns that lead to pan­ic attacks, so that I can try to short-cir­cuit them before I get too wound up.

For less crit­i­cal nerves, I find it impor­tant to keep my hands busy. I usu­al­l­ly take a small stitch­ing project with me wher­ev­er I go. Hav­ing my hands busy and keep­ing my mind par­tial­ly occu­pied takes up enough of my ener­gy to keep me from get­ting too wound up in nerves, most of the time. My stitch­ing is the equiv­a­lent of oth­er peo­ples’ doo­dling or fid­get toys.

Danger: Broken Links

But not for long, I promise. I’m doing a lot of work on the site, mov­ing pages into Word­Press, and some­times there’s a delay before I get the for­ward­ing set up from the orig­i­nal address or get all the links updat­ed. If you run into a dead link, please drop a com­ment to me, because it might be one I’ve missed. Sor­ry!

On Driving

Plinky asked, “Would you say that you enjoy dri­ving?”

Dri­ving Cars in a Traf­fic Jam

Not real­ly. I’ve nev­er been one of those peo­ple who gets in the car just to go for a dri­ve. I use vehi­cles sole­ly as tools, in order to get from one place to anoth­er. I miss them sore­ly when I don’t have ready access, though.

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Book Review: Good Girls Don’t Get Fat

Good Girls Don't Get FatGood Girls Don’t Get Fat by Robyn Sil­ver­man
My rat­ing: 5 of 5 stars

This book is absolute­ly amaz­ing, and I strong­ly rec­om­mend it to every­one.

Yes, I said every­one. If you are a human being who is read­ing this post/review, you live in a first-world soci­ety and you inter­act with females. You will ben­e­fit from a greater under­stand­ing of what mod­ern social stan­dards do to young females and how they shape us for the rest of our lives, how they twist us into dis­or­dered think­ing that touch­es absolute­ly every­thing we do, from how we think about our­selves to our per­son­al and busi­ness rela­tion­ships, our spir­i­tu­al­i­ty, our health — every­thing. And you will have an oppor­tu­ni­ty to change how you inter­act with females, par­tic­u­lar­ly girls, so that you are more of a pos­i­tive influ­ence rather than yet anoth­er per­son who is pulling her down and hold­ing her back.

I was already famil­iar with some of the research regard­ing the media and unre­al­is­tic por­tray­als of women. I knew that every mag­a­zine cov­er is Pho­to­shopped and air­brushed, that “nor­mal” mod­els rep­re­sent only 1–2% of real women, etc. I didn’t know that 5% of Amer­i­can high school girls have turned to tak­ing ana­bol­ic steroids in order to get a more toned, slim look, accord­ing to the CDC’s 2003 Youth Risk Behav­ior Sur­veil­lance Sys­tem, and that one out of every 14 girls in Amer­i­can mid­dle schools have tried steroids for the same pur­pose. I had heard that the pop­u­lar­i­ty of cos­met­ic surgery for young peo­ple was ris­ing, but I had no idea that it was as preva­lent as it is. I can’t remem­ber exact­ly how high, but it was fright­en­ing.

If there is a young lady in your life, stop for a moment and think — are you a pos­i­tive influ­ence on her? When young women in col­lege were asked about what they recall their par­ents say­ing about their bod­ies as they grew up, 80% of the respons­es were of neg­a­tive remarks. What will the girl in your life remem­ber you say­ing? If you’ve ever won­dered whether or not you should talk to her about los­ing a lit­tle weight, don’t. Believe me — the rest of the world has already beat­en that into her, and will go on doing so every minute of every day. There’s no way she doesn’t know that her body is unac­cept­able, whether she’s still car­ry­ing a lit­tle baby fat, is mor­bid­ly obese, or sim­ply has a slight­ly round face.

One of the things I admire most about Good Girls Don’t Get Fat is that it doesn’t just talk about how bad things are, it gives con­crete sug­ges­tions for improve­ment! That’s what we need.

The book is avail­able in any for­mat you can imag­ine. Pick it up. It’s an easy read, and won­der­ful.

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Happy Father’s Day!

I hope it was as won­der­ful for y’all as it was for us.

While Dad­dy was tak­ing a nap, I did a lit­tle work on the site here, con­tin­u­ing the process of migrat­ing things from the old for­mat into Word­Press. It’s going to take more time, but even­tu­al­ly all the pages will be uni­form. Real­ly! If you find any­thing that isn’t work­ing, though, please be patient and leave me a com­ment about it?

The Great Outdoors

Plinky asked, “When was the last time you enjoyed the great out­doors?”

Sea-swim­ming (Medi­um)

Does a sub­ur­ban pool count? Because I was in one today, play­ing with my niece and nephews, chat­ting with my broth­er and sis­ter-in-law and par­ents. It was a love­ly part of our Father’s Day week­end cel­e­bra­tion.

It has been a few years since I went out to any­thing that could be called wilder­ness, but I’d like to do so again, now that I’m get­ting stronger and my aller­gies have improved along with the rest of my health. I haven’t been to a beach (oth­er than the import­ed one at Lake Lanier) in almost 20 years, either. That’s anoth­er thing I’d like to do.

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Half-full, Half-empty?

Today’s NaBloPo­Mo prompt: “Is the glass half-full or half-emp­ty?”

It’s half-full, and things are get­ting bet­ter all the time.

Last night as I was sleep­ing
I dreamt—marvelous error!—
that I had a bee­hive
here inside my heart.
And the gold­en bees
were mak­ing white combs
and sweet hon­ey
from my old fail­ures.
Anto­nio Macha­do

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Where I Hope to Be in Three Years

Plinky asked, “Where do you hope to be in three years?”

The future

I hope that I’m no longer dis­abled, that I’m ful­ly func­tion­al, tak­ing few­er med­ica­tions and see­ing few­er doc­tors. I’m work­ing on that goal now. I plan to be work­ing full time either for myself or in a posi­tion equiv­a­lent to the one I had back in 2000, when I last worked. I want to be attend­ing school, unless I already have my degree. And final­ly, I hope to be liv­ing in a blue state or mak­ing seri­ous progress towards get­ting there or even emi­grat­ing.

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An Old Friend

Plinky asked, “Which of your friends have you know for the longest amount of time?”

2009-05-23: Morn­ing Sky Green­ery (rest) IMG_9780

I’m just going to count peo­ple I’m reg­u­lar­ly in touch with offline who are not close kin, or things would be very com­plex, as there are lots of old friends and rel­a­tives on my Face­book friends list.

I’ve tech­ni­cal­ly known Tate since high school, but we didn’t get to know each oth­er very well until this past year. So I sup­pose James, who I met via Sam back in 1998, wins the prize for being around the longest, poor guy.

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My Top 5 Strengths

Plinky said, “List your top five strengths.”

strength

1) When I give my word or my heart, I don’t change my mind. I’m loy­al to a fault.

2) I can learn just about any­thing I care to learn. Intel­li­gence is use­ful.

3) I don’t lie or mis­rep­re­sent myself. I’m the same per­son online and offline. I prac­tice rad­i­cal hon­esty.

4) I inher­it­ed cre­ativ­i­ty from both of my grand­moth­ers. I’m great with col­ors and am a tal­ent­ed stitch­er.

5) I’m a sur­vivor. I’ve expe­ri­enced some ter­ri­bly painful things start­ing in child­hood and haven’t allowed them to ruin my life.

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