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Food Poisoning and Manic Me
calamityjim
I am struggling to find the language to describe the place where mania meets food poisoning, and continually find myself resorting to limbo. Definitely limbo. It isn’t hell, but it is definitely being trapped beside it.

I woke up with severe food poisoning Monday at 2 am. I proceeded to not die until 4 am. After dying at 4 am I was able to get a bit of sleep, though not as much as I would have liked because food poisoning, on top of being utterly disgusting and a drunken merry-go-round of sensations, is also really fricking painful.

So I did the adult and logical thing. I texted my mother and told her I was dying. My mother told me to make my sister go buy me gravol. Now, my sister is an adult person with a real job doing important things, so texting her while she is at work and demanding anything from her is not wise as far as life decisions go. Even if she IS the person who poisoned me.

So I hauled my carcass out of bed, made it to the pharmacy, picked up herbal gravol, which I can take with my mood medications. I took some, which helped a little with the pain and a little with being able to keep down water. Once I was sure that I would be able to spit again I was able to get a little bit of sleep.

So Monday was spent getting a little bit of sleep here and there and laying on my couch watching Muppet movies. Go, Treasure Island, go!

But there is a problem brewing in this situation, and it is being driven by two factors.

1. Stress, emotional or otherwise, which includes physical, makes me manic.

2. The drugs I take to prevent the onset of mania need to be taken with 300 calories.

Which means I spent Monday night making friends with shadows on my ceiling. I spent from about 2 am laying in bed, tossing and turning, pulling blankets on as fast as I was kicking them off, thanks to the fever I was running. I managed to pass out for a few minutes here and there, so I did actually “wake up” before the alarm I set went off.

And I felt great! Like, really great!

And then I stood up.

So I laid in bed until it was late enough that I could actually call both jobs and tell them I was sick, and then got up to go watch all the movies and level up on FFVIII, oh! and to make soup! from a can!

See, this is the way mania really hits. Manic people need to be doing things. I need to be moving physically. Never have I had such a hankering to run a marathon as I did Tuesday morning. Keep in mind that I am naturally lazy and have never really desired to run a marathong, and that I'm PHYSICALLY HANDICAPPED and CANNOT RUN.

But nope, food poisoned me wanted to run a marathon.  Food poisoned me wanted to go out and get steak and fancy wine. Food poisoned me wanted to un call in sick and go to work because food poisoned me was bored. Food poisoned me is an unrealistic idiot.

I’m not sure I have the tools to explain how being that sick and that manic feels. It’s like being hot and cold at the same time. You know that you feel both, you know that you need to act on one of these feelings. Add another blanket? Or kick one off? But there is no right answer. No matter what I did I was still going to be sick. I did make a quick trip to the grocery store, partly because I needed canned soup and a banana, and partly to test how I was feeling. And I took a two hour nap after I got home, so obviously I wasn’t feeling up to leaving the house.

But after waking up I just felt bored. And kinda wonderful. And like throwing up. And like running a god damned marathon.

It’s objectively unfair.

I do all the things I am supposed to do to maintain my mental health. I take my pills correctly. I have good sleep hygiene. I avoid triggers like alcohol and partying. And I take vitamin D faithfully. I am doing all the things.

And then I get sick and everything I have been doing becomes null and void. It doesn’t fucking matter anymore that I’ve been a good little patient. It doesn’t matter that I just finished a cycle of adjusting my drugs in response to a major mood relapse like a champ. It doesn’t matter that I am doing everything in my power to deal with my mental illness.

I am angry. I am angry that I am going to walk into work today for the first time since getting sick and speak a million miles an hour about whatever comes to my mind because my brain doesn’t have to decency to act sick when I am sick because of the type of sick I am. It makes me feel alone and it makes me feel like I’m about to be judged.

I’m tired of the struggle, even though there is no bowing out. There is no break from this. I am going to go home, take my pills, and stare at my ceiling. If my body is responsive I will fall asleep at a decent time and stay that way. If it is not I am going to have my third long night this week.

And the only thing I can do is accept this. The world is as it is, and though what it is is objectively unfair, I can’t change that. I can only respond.

Though I swear if I ever get food poisoning again I am just going to find someone to shoot me.