Category Archives: Mental Health

Today Was Better

Today was better than yesterday.
Last night Ivy slept.

Today I accomplished my goal of the day – phoning Meghan the social worker to help us get back on our feet with housing, with respite, and with therapy.

Going to be going for an EEG on April 5, slightly tempted to shave my head before I do so. Resisting temptation until it can be done by skilled hands.

Starting ‘Self-Concept & Communication’ outpatient therapy group at Grace Hospital April 18. Have intake assessment meeting with Michelle in Psychiatric Ambulatory Services on April 11.

Becoming weary of struggling to survive all the time, and yet invigorated when viewing my goals for each day as survival mechanisms. So many people don’t, but dammit, I’m going to be a survivor.

Following the adventures of someone I met in Tulita who is now in New Zealand. Inspired by this woman’s love of life and beauty inside & out. Blessed to have met her in person.

Have been sleeping a lot lately, and feeling sick to my stomach. Difficult to tell if this is stress-induced or viral. Doesn’t feel bad enough to be viral. Possibly stress. Having a conversion disorder has proved if anything that I apparently have no clue how to deal with actual problems.

What I really want to do with my life: go back to school, finish my B.A., eventually get doctorate and teach English Literature. I want to travel more and I want to raise Ivy to be a successful, happy, independent woman. I want to get a tattoo. I specifically want to travel to England to search out family roots. I want to learn more about herbs and crystals. I want to make Graham happy. I want to make at least one other person happy too. Is this attainable? Who knows? But it’s what’s in my heart.


Flotsam & Jetsam

Hello everybody! It’s been a little while since my last entry, so I thought it was about high time I updated!

This might be a bit choppy because I still can’t concentrate very long. But, how have I been, you ask?

Honestly, I’m starting to feel well again. I’ve been put on an antipsychotic and the voices in my head have quieted and I finally feel like my thoughts are mine and mine alone again.

I’m still in hospital on the psychiatric ward until my lithium and valproate serum levels normalize, but I’m hopeful that in the psychiatric medicinal side of things, this new medication I’m taking called risperidone will continue to bring such positive results.

I only had one mini-seizure yesterday, and before that I hadn’t had one for nearly a week, so that’s good. My doc thinks they are probably caused by stress, which I didn’t know was even a thing. Just to make sure and be thorough, I’m scheduled for an EEG on April 5 at HSC, and to be honest, I’m pretty scared. Anyone wanna volunteer to come hold my hand while I get wires strapped all over my head? After that, they give the results of the EEG to a neurologist and he/she decides whether or not I need a CT scan. My hunch is that it will be fine and I won’t need to go that far.

Currently Reading:

  NIV Archaeological Study Bible

Cycling to Asylum by Su J. Sokol

Marie Antoinette: The Last Queen of France by Évelyne Lever

Sexy Origins and Intimate Things: The Rites and Rituals of Straights, Gays, Bis, Drags, Trans, Virgins and Others by Charles Panati

8 Legs Up by C.W. Clark

Foucault’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco

A History of Byzantium  by Timothy E. Gregory

Saga, Volume 5 by Brian K. Vaughan

Grimm Fairy Tales Vol. 1 by Ralph Tedesco

Quite a mindful! But I switch to a different book after every chapter, so I can read a lot of books at the same time.

Today I’m grateful for:

  1. The lovely dinner/bookstore date my husband took me on today
  2. Lestat is fitting in so well with the other cats here.
  3. McDonald’s double cheeseburgers. Not a lie. They’re like crack burgers when you come back south from being on the 63rd Latitude after 4 months lol

hero_pdt_double_cheeseburger

How did your day go, guys? What are you reading? I love comments so feel free to leave some below! Peace out.

– SharaLee


Just Before Christmas

IMG_4155.JPGThe title of this blog is ‘SharaLee Reads’. SharaLee has honestly not been doing a whole lot of reading as of late. SharaLee has been sick, and dealing with a very busy toddler, and feeding a hardworking husband. When SharaLee gets time to read, she spends most of it sleeping.

SharaLee also has bipolar disorder, type I. And currently, she is in a low. Writing about herself in third person makes it seem less hard to complete this entry, so please suspend your disbelieve and bear with her. ❤

It has occurred to SharaLee for the first time that what she deals with truly is an illness, not just a character flaw or something she’s not doing right to be happy. She could give you all the facts and all the sarcastic arguments and memes out there about educating yourself on mental illness, but most of you WordPress lovelies are proficient in the use of Google and Wikipedia, so I’ll just leave you to it. Instead of muscle spasms or fluctuations of physical strength, SharaLee experiences emotional spasms and fluctuations of impulse control strength. Spasms is also not the right word, too short and sporadic for the length and duration of the emotional pain and/or elation that characterize much of SharaLee’s life.

Okay, enough third person. I think I can handle this now. I woke up feeling suffocated in my own sadness, cried once while watching ‘Elf’, and had much support from my husband, took comfort in the joy of my daughter.

Thankfully for me, Christmas is a good time for me. That means that this low should be okay, since Christmas is in five days, and hopefully the low will be under control by then.

However, got a call from Yellowknife today that my credit card payment did not go through for my meds, which means I am using my last dose of lithium tonight and won’t get more until after Christmas.

I know this will be tough but Graham and I have been through a lot, and we can get through this too.

Thank you all for your continuing love and support. It’s reciprocated. ❤ ❤ ❤


My Psych Shelf

So, as many of you know, I deal with some mental health issues, including Bipolar Affective Disorder: Type I and Borderline Personality Disorder. I try not to let them run my life, though I concede that they do greatly affect it. I try to learn as much as I can so I can learn to deal with these things the best I can so I can make the most out of the times I am well and better handle the times I am unwell (that part has more to do with bipolar than with BPD, but I digress). All of this, and my very curious mind has led to what I have come to dub my ‘Psych Shelf’. It’s basically a collection of books, some non-fiction, some fiction, some for necessity, some for pure interest that I have collected, all of which have something to do with the psychology of the human mind (usually abnormal psychology but sometimes social and environmental psychology too). I thought I’d share it with you! Here it is:

Featured image

Here they are, from left to right:

– New Hope for People with Bipolar Disorder by Jan Fawcett, M.D., Bernard Golden, Ph.D., and Nancy Rosenfeld

– Icy Sparks by Gwyn Hyman Rubio

– Medical Muses: Hysteria in Nineteenth-Century Paris by Asti Hustvedt

– Silent to the Bone by e.l. konigsburg

– Dying of Embarrassment: Help for Social Anxiety & Phobia by Barbara G. Markway, Ph.D., Cheryl N. Carmin, Ph.D., C. Alec Pollard, Ph.D., Teresa Flynn, Ph.D.

– Bedlam by Greg Hollingshead

– Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles Mackay

– Brief Interviews with Hideous Men by David Foster Wallace

– Eutopia by David Nickle

– Asserting Yourself: A Practical Guide for Positive Change by Sharon Anthony Bower and Gordon H. Bower

– An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness by Kay Redfield Jamison

– Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament by Kay Redfield Jamison

– Night Falls Fast: Understanding Suicide by Kay Redfield Jamison

– The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

– The Hypochondriacs: Nine Tormented Lives by Brian Dillon

– Broken Glass by Tabitha Freeman

– The Case of the Constant Suicides by John Dickson Carr

– Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

– Mind Games by William Deverell

– Secret Lives of Great Authors by Robert Schnakenberg

– Page Fright: Foibles and Fetishes of Famous Writers by Harry Bruce

– The Secret Language of Eating Disorders  by Peggy Claude-Pierre

– The Anorexia Diaries by Linda M. Rio and Tara M. Rio

– History of a Suicide by Jill Bialosky

– Coping with Trauma-Related Dissociation: Skills Training for Patients and Therapists by Suzette Boon, Kathy Steele, Onno Van Der Hart

– Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman

Not pictured on this shelf, but mentally included by me are:

– Sybil by Flora Rheta Schreiber

Psychology: First Canadian Edition by David G. Myers

– The Bride Collector by Ted Dekker

Have you read any of these? Do you recommend any more? Have you got a specifically themed shelf at home? Let me know in the comments, keep your brains sharp and happy reading!