Wednesday, August 18, 2010

On Not Saying “Good-bye”

I got the word today that one of my co-workers is moving on to greener pastures.  Sad news for me, since over the past four years or so, she and I have become good work buddies.  We’ve been through fires that have galvanized our friendship.  She has a cool clear head, which balances nicely with my reactive quick temper.  We’ve learned to work together quite well.
She was a part of the panel interview that I passed through to secure my current job.  She is an Indian-American, and most everyone mispronounces her name.  I did myself initially.  In my thank-you note following my initial interview, I even misspelled her name.
But once I was on board in my new position, I listened carefully to her introduce herself to others and got the sound down.  One time, she told someone else in my presence, “You know … the Queer is the only one who pronounces my name correctly.”  Well, I just know that names are important.  Especially if you have a unique name.
But as usual, I digress.

In the jobs that I’ve held in my adult life (which I consider my time in Houston ), I have held on to at least one person from each of my five employers.  From my first job that I held about 16 years ago, a friend stopped by my house and had coffee a couple of months ago.  I hadn’t seen him in five or six years, but it was just like we had picked up a conversation from years back.
I even got my best friend from a job.  I was employed with her at the same company for only eight months, but I grabbed her and didn’t let go.
Sometimes the bonds are loose.  Sometimes the bonds are fast.
I’m not sure what will happen with my friend who gave her notice today.  However, I know that she gave her notice to the company, not on our friendship.
When I find someone who is special, I’m good with “hello,” and I’m bad with “good-bye.”

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

"It's Been a While..."

Hello All.  I took an extended break after a strong start at blogging.  When I began back in the spring, I posted almost daily.  But something stepped in, and I had to take it easy.  It was a mandatory interruption.  My insanity kicked in.
Now, I’ll try not to make light of my situation, but levity is a part of my base personality.  So I am quite sure that I will not properly illustrate the gravity of the affliction.  Even using the word “affliction” is starting off this essay on the wrong foot.
About 14 years ago, I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder.
Many people when they read this may automatically think “Oh…he’s crazy.”
I’ll not argue that.
Other people who read this may think “Oh…he just needs an excuse for bad behavior.”
I do over-apologize for myself when I have finally realized how my mania is draining the energy from my family, friends and co-workers.  To some, Bipolar Disorder is sometimes lumped into the same group of suffering as TMJ (temporomandibular joint) Disorder and CTS (Carpal Tunnel Syndrome).  Kinda the fashion disease of the moment.
And here I sit, writing off my absence from blogging on my hypomania.  Well, actually I’m not.  My life got extremely busy and almost unmanageable in the past couple of months.
And when that happens, people may think, “He must be off his medication.”  Well, I can’t lie and say that has never happened.  I do have a big ego and have gone off my meds when I thought I had the disorder “under control.”  But it ultimately always wins. 
This time I did not go off my medication.  My hypo-mania reared its ugly head when I
·        Had a bad cold and coughed all night (unable to get good rest)
·        Took cold medicine that worked against my “normal” medication
·        Had a number of unusual stressors in my life
This time, fortunately I was not hospitalized.  That has only happened to me once.  And I hope, never again.  That one time left a bad taste in my mouth; I was in the Harris County Psychiatric Ward for three weeks.  Scary, but not as bad as one would imagine.  (I guess I need to watch “One Flew over the Koo-Koo’s Nest” sometime to get a better perspective).
I won’t go into much detail now of that time, or I run the risk of getting wordy and dull.  You can expect a full post on the history of my initial diagnosis some time in the future.  It’s much more interesting than my daily struggle with the disorder.  And yes, it’s a struggle:  just like weight issues for the bad-body-image group, or sugar for the diabetic group, or cholesterol for the troubled cardio-vascular group.
I get to take medicine that dulls my sex drive (and I enjoy sex), watch my alcohol intake (and I love beer), and I have to make sure that I am getting at least seven hours of sleep each night (and I’m a night-owl).
But enough of that.  I’m just popping in to try and re-establish my writing groove.  I’ll try to get back to my daily observations with this post.  I enjoy writing them. 
So in terms of my insanity, I can’t really change it.  I’ll just quote Popeye.  “I yam what I yam.”