My Notes this week.

I sort of had a mixed week.

I’m aware of the things I do and kept my head down at work. Tried to be quiet and tried to just think my way about people.

Stupidly I reacted to something daft, that upset me.

Made me think and my trusty notebook was used. I write, so it’s paper. 

Avoidant.

Rejection Sensitivity.

Asociality.

Introversion.

Misanthropy.

A few things that lead on from one another and I could very very safely say that AvPD – avoidant personality disorder could be very easily self diagnosed without much effort. 

Professionally? Depends on the questions and if I’d really really wish to go that far along the line.

Social interaction is an issue and I go so far in ability. It’s down to trust and my bullshit radar. 

I certainly don’t go out my way to make or keep good impressions and I don’t try to be false or create a false image of myself.

Perhaps that’s an element of over-honesty and perhaps it relates back to my diagnosed condition. 

Now, the issue is saying to myself, particularly after my PIP experience whether I need to look at the route of asking the GP and getting another Psych appointment in the near future.

I know my diagnosis is comorbid with depression and low mood, poor communication, lack of friends, lack of interest in people, and that could easily point me toward the avoidant personality disorder. It might be marginal though.

There’s the Social Phobia angle and given my life since around 2013, that’s understandable. I have withdrawn and I’ve had the whack of diagnosis and other ‘heavy’ things  happening in my life. 

I can rationalise the issues and talk myself around them. I can also see a degree of comfort in being self aware.

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and sessions of ‘how are you’ today and ‘maybe today go to another shop’ or ‘maybe phone x,y or z’ isn’t what I want to do. 

I saw through CBT on my first engagement with it. I can accept talking therapy but with limitations. 

I can’t just talk in the way a CBT structure seeks the person to do.

This (written) is my best method of communication, without exception. No stumbling, no processing the environment or other person/people.

I understand Social Rejection. I experience it every day. I know how groups work and I am the outsider. I don’t try for another role. Been there and done that. 

I can one on one relate and get on with people to an extent, but add more people in and the results worsen. 

I could think to try again, but experience says there’s little that I can apply to it from what I’ve learned about myself more recently.

‘Perception is Reality’ and sometimes it’s not worth the effort to try and overturn people’s opinions. Much of the time I don’t genuinely give a hoot as to what people think of me. 

The lack of that mirror inside me, my honesty and directness means that I’m unlikely to change much on that account.

Now, whether that means I think it’s my condition plus one or more personality issues might be going a bit far.

Asociality or being Anti-Social, might be something, but I’ve had friendships, relationships and I veer toward the company of others even when I do feel excluded or not part of things. 

Again, there’s the Social angle there too, by not having the worldview around me, and not trying to change any perceptions, but it’s the internal compass and honesty filter again. 

Introversion? I can plead guilty to that, there’s been a lot of soul searching over the condition and what I do and how I do it. I know there’s a need for me to control things and getting ‘help’ hasn’t been easy. 

My decisions after PIP haven’t helped either. I can’t be part of ‘that’ community if I’m not seen as disabled enough and I had a difficult text chat with the one friend I made from that group recently too, as I just couldn’t/wouldn’t  involve myself in pushing the local council on their services for adults with that condition too.

Not the right answer or a very personable one, but an answer that was right for my moral code/philosophy.

Misanthropy. Now, that’s a push. 

Not by design or intent. I do despair at the human condition, at the mind bogglingly stupid television, media and internet. I hate low brow celebrity tittle tattle.

I despise people who are’ look at me’. I find the forced ‘look how good my life’ bullshit on Facebook depressing and turgid.

I don’t seek to start conversation. Of course, I don’t have ‘small talk’, if the classic diagnosis of my condition is true.

Well, the thing is, that I do, I learned it over the years, it’s by no means natural, but it’s in there. 

I’d say Misanthropy is a bit too far, I’d settle on avoidant and be okay with sensitive to rejection and accept a degree of introversion and being antisocial.

I don’t seek opportunity to be with others, I don’t really need interaction. I know that I don’t seek attention or particularly want to stand out in anyway. I can at times push those margins for people or reasons but again that can be through circumstance.

So, what have I learned, what do I do? 

It seems my ‘reactions’ upset people, even if by chance I’m right. I think that means more and better self discipline and not blurting out my immediate thoughts. 

There’s some philosophical thinking needed, as well as research and a very slow and steady but sure grasp toward being less isolated and having a tolerable but necessary amount of social contact.

I don’t want to be a person that’s involuntary celibate and over time, I’d like to at least pick up the threads again to a level of friendship with the other sex.

To get there means at least working on my other day to day issues on people and dealing with social phobia and that introspection.

Now whether I think there’s a need for medical intervention is different. I’m self taught on psychology and it’s looking at sociology and philosophy a little bit more to figure what I can learn and do and adopt into my life.

Change isn’t easy. Recognising change is a step, but I’m not working from a plain sheet of paper and I’ll have to weave my way though what I have and who I am.

Yeah, I know…

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Painting. 


The uninteresting picture is my hall. I live in an older traditional flat with high ceilings.
I started painting it in 2014 probably, putting samplers on the wall and buying the tub of paint.

Yeah it’s 2017 now, I still haven’t finished all the high bits. I can reach so far standing on a stool.

I’m not great at decorating, I do what I can. I had a kick on earlier this year when my rack, that I hung jackets and shirts from, fell off the wall one weekend.

It’s not a huge room, it’s not a difficult thing to do, I’ve did it in fits and starts, making the most progress in 2017. 

Some in January, some in March, some in May, some in August.

It’s how I am, I’ve had days off and went to the pub, I’ve spent time with the kids, I’ve dog sat. I’ve worried over PIP and money and I’ve sometimes just sat and been online or watching TV.

In my head is a scheme to improve how I live. 

I unplugged my sky box that I don’t need or use yesterday. Another day, I’ll put it in the cardboard box that it came in.

I got a new plastic dish drainer for my kitchen months ago. I’ll get around to actually placing it beside the sink and throwing out the old one.

It’s psychological. I want to. I know I should. That creates pressure and anxiety and worry. 

I can do the things I need to do with the kids, I buy food and eat it, I can manage the washing machine to ensure I have clean clothes for work, I can do my daily cycle.

Beyond that? Nope. 

Getting aluminium stepladders or a small ‘A’ shape thing to do the painting of the upper bits of that wall properly is a one hour walk to and from the DIY store. I could easily do that after work one day.

Most days after work, I need to decompress after people and the train and just an average day. I want my work clothes off and to eat.

I can’t and don’t ask for help. I don’t want to be seen to struggle and I don’t want to annoy anyone. 

I focus on my day to day and the kids, beyond that is a struggle.

I’m not unique and probably not alone in this, it’s matter of the mind, rather than a matter of actually being able to do it.

It’s frustrating and annoying and it’s imperfect. Not a good thing to live in and not perfect or normal.

I can say to myself that it’s ok, that it’s my ‘normal’ and think about how I live and the marginal changes that I can make. 

That’s what I do and it’s a random half hour of determination and motivation that gets me to pick up the brush and do that bit more.

When it happens again I don’t know, a weeknight I feel ok, a Saturday night when the kids are asleep.

Mr Jones’ Afternoon off.

Inspired by hearing Counting Crowes ‘Mr Jones & Me’ in Five Guys after getting a drenching, here’s my Friday afternoon off.

First Five Guys for Lunch and filling. Cheeseburger with just mayo and mustard. 

I’m pretty straightforward on taste and the mayo/cheese beef/mustard does the job. 


The burgers are tremendous with the double beef patty and heaps of fries. Sets me up for later.

Next Central Station low level for 1346 to Larkhall and three car unit 320317 was still with green SPT seats on inside.  

Journey was two stops away to Bridgeton. Much of journey in tunnel and sadly not a stop at Glasgow Green 😦


Pretty much site of station and exactly at where I was headed.

1405 after a walk and I’m in the West Brewery in the Templeton Building near Glasgow Green

4 beers in a flyte for £5.20


Munich Red 4.9%

GPA – German Pale Ale 5.2%

Wild West 4.9%

Feierabend Pilsner 4.6%

A more traditional bar than Drygate and food for it.

The downpour at 1300 put paid to my thoughts of an afternoon in beer garden. 

Munich Red was pick of the first four for me.


This Beauty is Heidi-Weisse. 


The West Black was a decent Stout


I also had the Red in a pint, as I really enjoyed the sampler.

I walked backed into Glasgow City Centre at about 1700.

Passed the Doulton Fountain on Way.


And tried an ale in brewdog’ bar. 

Later went to a newer German beer house.


Both very drinkable.

I made my way home and caught 2036 train, so I had more than a few hours off from worrying and being stressed. It was nice.

Lifehacks 2017

Ok, I start my day without an alarm clock, I hate being forced awake. If important I have my phone and a clock radio to make sure. 

I’ll set two alarms with a twenty minute gap, first one is a ‘false’ one, too early second is real.

I need coffee to jolt a start, I have a dolce gusto maker with the Nescafé pods. It’s easy to use and pretty much does job.

To plan myway to work I use Realtime Trains website to plan the train I’m going to catch. There are others but that’s easy and I calculate in my regular walk to station when looking at departures. 

It shows which platform I need to get on at and which platform the train terminates at.

I use a travel pass bought monthly for train and bus. Minimises ticket buying and simple enough to use. My area doesn’t yet have a smart card that works like a London Oystercard on all modes.

Once at work in morning I drink Coconut Water (Potassium) and have a Plain Yoghurt (Gut Bacteria), 

I try to take these at home on non workdays. Yeo Valley natural yoghurts taste okay to me and have active ingredients.

Longer term, I think the yoghurt helps with regular use. It’s helpful for the irritable bowel and toilet issues I can have.

For lights and things I have blue lenses on my glasses and my eyes were tested for colour sensitivity and colour is correct for me.

They help with seeing, depth perception, distance, balance and dealing with non natural light in rooms and spaces. Also very useful in navigating through people at busy places.

I have Flare Audio earplugs to cut noise. I will still hear a bit but it cuts out noises that irritate, humming sounds from electricity, burrs and beeps. I carry one set with me and I keep another in my bedroom.

If more active sounds are present I use wireless headphones paired with my phone for music. Mine were on offer and worth looking around, long term aspiration is for a better set.

For smells that irritate, get a small tin of Vaseline and rub inside your nostrils. Not perfect but helps.

To have human contact I tweet and write here. I’m much better communicating by text.

My vacuum cleaner is a Miele it’s one of the quietest out there. I can bear using it.

If I need to use washing machine on full program I set it before leaving the house. The noise and vibration are better not experienced and good timing helps.

I use soft drinks for energy crashes and I tend to like chocolate chip cookies in a five pack from supermarkets as a booster too.

My phone is optimised for my blue glasses and the brightness and tint of display can be set. 

I use one screen for all apps. I group apps in bundles rather than needing to scroll the front page.

Daily little things can help with anxiety and backward planning from when I have to be somewhere to when I must leave house helps.

It’s a series of little things that I do and have changed in my life since diagnosis.

I’m currently seeing if green tea instead of coffee in afternoons helps sleeping pattern at night. It seems to, but I’ll give it a few more weeks to be sure.

Processing

Some things take time. 

My head works around things, sometimes and necessarily avoids the issues. Coping enough to allow day to day function and a whole ability to just be.

The face doesn’t drop and it doesn’t rise. The problems are there. The days pass and move on.

I get there, I realise what I’ve done or not done. It hits hard. The emotional crunch. A bite of humility, a torn piece of pride, sadness at the pit of my stomach, shallow and almost worthless breathes.

I grieve and fixate and the possibilities burn in my mind and weigh at me. It bites my mood and appetite and desires.

The functioning continues, days and weeks and work and home.

Days go into weeks and months and years and I think whether I can raise my head again, regain the ‘mojo’, the essence, the bits of me subsumed in that hurt and dealing with it.

Tears at random times. Inexplicably not when I’d like them to happen. 

Bursts of frustration and anguish. Minutes of darkness. Days of numb.

Does it lift? It’s like a cloud blanket screening the sun, it’s like fog. 

Permission isn’t granted to escape it. No driving thoughts of renewal or restoration. Merely existing and being.

It’s hard to explain, it’s hard to see through the moments clearly, it difficult to replay the pictures in the mind and hard to admit the loss and the pain and the defeat.

It’s not for talking over and making a public sport. Random sympathy doesn’t quite help. Hearing stories or being patronised won’t cut it.

Rising again isn’t that straightforward but the processing completes and the emotions dull after a while.