A Peach and A Catalyst

This one was inspired by Colonial Punk’s Post.


A one syllable word that is so commonplace in everyone’s life. When am I not stressed? I can’t answer that. It really is always something.

It’s more about how stressors are processed that produces the effects and thus, the consequences. I’m probably not a prime example of how stress is interpreted. I have been known to buckle under the weight. I am guilty of allowing my situations to become critical.

How stress manifests for me is a complicated thing. It depends on the particular stressor and the source that it is coming from. In addition, it depends on my particular mood, the emotion, and the intensity of emotion that the stressor produces at the time.
I’ve been running a little high lately. I’m out of the hypomanic episode, thanks to a virus or something. But, if I had to describe the state I’m in right now, I’d call it a 6 or 7 on the mood scale with panic attacks. (In all fairness, this started before the abnormally high stress). Honestly, I’m used to running at about a 4.

I mentioned in Just Got Served, But It Wasn’t Dinner that C.S. is being sued. That was Thursday. That comes with a whole host of problems for both him and me. We finally have the name of an attorney. Any further than that and I’m really not at liberty to publicly detail the rest. Legal problems are at least in the top 5 of my “Worst Things That Could Happen List”. (Medical is number 1. We’re getting there.)

My typically benevolent boss is coming down on me. I understand her concern. My boss has a difficult time delegating and the Winter Concert is in my hands. Her anxiety has to be off the charts. It would be absolutely embarrassing if this project flops.

The electric company has recently determined that we are financially ineligible for services. Now, we’re stuck with a budget amount of $430 a month. That’s up $200 from what we were paying on a “just making ends meet” budget.

T.D.’s Early Intervention services ended October 16th, when he turned three. This is complicated, so try to stay with me. He was supposed to have transitioned into school-aged services at this point, but it didn’t happen.

Adding fuel to the fire, C.S. isn’t sure if he wants to take this promotion on the cusp of some serious financial detriment and before the holidays.

I mentioned problems with T.D.’s pediatrician giving me some serious trouble in The Farris Wheel. I won’t go into the complete story, but I have a ton of things I have to face now with his health and development.

And I have this surgery looming.  My consult is finally scheduled in stone for October 28.  We’ll just have to wait and see.


The reactions varied. When I saw the papers for the suit, I sprang into action. It was an insult. I was angry.

When my boss came at me, I flew. It shook the very foundation of my work experience. I’ve always considered work to be a safe zone. I became so anxious that I responded with annoyance, fear, and paranoia.

All of T.D.’s things are overwhelming. I’m treading into unknown territory and I’m not sure how to proceed. It froze me in fear to know that my child has something wrong. And I felt like the worst mother in the world.

I’ve never had a major surgery. There are a lot of unknowns. I’ve been dodging it because I don’t want to walk around blindly. Too many what if’s. How am I going to handle news that something bad has happened?

And as for the bills, what am I going to do? We can handle it, but we’re going to be on a tight budget. We might have to make some heavy sacrifices. I am upset. I can’t stand the idea of living in extreme poverty again. I am almost to the point of tantrums. I still need a couple new staple clothing items (white t-shirts), new contacts, and new glasses. When will these needs be satisfied, if at all? Rawr!

So, as you can see, stress produces a wide variety of responses. But, the end result varies. Either, I crumble into a depressive episode because of the feeling of helplessness and hopelessness. Or, I go manic and power through with serious ferocity. Or, I am frozen with anxiety, and if I approach the situation, I’m overcome and retreat.

Spin the wheel. It’s hard to tell what stress will trigger with bipolar disorder.

Take two, three or four pills and call back in the morning.

9 thoughts on “A Peach and A Catalyst

  1. Yikes, you have a lot of stress. I can sympathize with the surgery aspect. Back in the spring, I had to undergo emergency surgery on my back, but it turned out all right in the end. I had to relearn how to walk to some degree, but I’m up and at it again. To be sure, it’s scary and there’s nothing to be said to make it less scary, but these things tend to turn out all right in the end. Plus, the drugs that follow suit are usually pretty nice on the emotions and stress.

    • The problem with the aftercare is the fact that I have little time available to be down and no one to take care of me. I’m supposed to be on bed-rest for two days after the surgery, if all goes well. I know it won’t, because my body likes to throw out problems. After I had my son, I threw a blood clot the size of a baseball. Not pretty.

      As for the drugs, I’m excited about those because I’m no fan of pain (with the exception for tattoos). The problem is that I have a 3 year old son with special needs. I can’t be knocked out all day.

      I don’t know how I’m going to do it. I’m going to have to work something out with both friends and familly to come and help me for the first week.

  2. I know you have medical trauma in your past, just as I have in mine, and I wish I had better advice to give you. PTSD is a hard thing to deal with. My therapist had me talk to the doctor about giving me something for the anxiety. I couldn’t take anything that morning because of anesthesia, but I don’t know if that would be the same for your situation. (Will you be unconscious or will it be local or is there no medication?) Regardless, it’s OK to ask for help.

    Make sure the doctor and nurses know you have medical trauma in your past. This usually makes them nicer. I hope your husband can be there this time, and see if you can bring another friend with you to at least be in the waiting room. You really shouldn’t have to be alone during and after this surgery. Don’t try to be Wonder Woman. You need your recovery time too.

    I certainly understand the Spin the “Stress Wheel” situation. I feel like that a lot too. When I find myself overwhelmed by stress, I sit down and start making lists. I include everything from the most trivial to the most distressing subjects. I find it helps to focus my anxiety.

    I don’t know if I’m any kind of help, but I’m send you a big {HUG}. 🙂

    • I make lists too. I try to make lists to organize my time. I make to-do lists that exist everywhere. I try to be proactive about everything, even when I’m trying to ignore it because I don’t want to deal with it. That’s rare, because I’m not like that, generally. But, I won’t lie. I’ve been avoiding this surgery.

      Thank you for your hugs and suggestions. I wish I had people as supportive as all of you in my real life.

  3. “Just take your pills, and everything will be alright.” Yep. Except for when it won’t.

    Try to hang in there, you’re tougher and stronger than even you realize. And you now have someone else in your corner to help remind you and keep you fighting, if necessary. But you so have this one. All of these ones. 😉

    • Aww thank you! It really helps me know that I have a sort of safety net. I’m not too worried about some of it, but the surgery is the worst of it. And, like we talked about, I’m not going to be able to schedule this surgery until Christmas break. And I’m watching C.S.’s PTO time get eaten by other situations. This brings us back to the intense fear of being alone for this. I can’t stand it. It fires things up the second I even consider it.

      Well, you know.

  4. Pingback: Taking the Bullet « As the Pendulum Swings

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