MANGRY. That’s Mad + Angry. And Now I’m Mangry for having to Explain MANGRY.

I was going to write a post.

I was going to tell you all about the awesome four day weekend I had this weekend just past.

I was going to tell you about bookstores and masturdating and parks and recreation and old fucks and Buddha by the rhododendron and fishing and fiction.

But no.

No.

I can’t do that right now.

Because fuck me, that’s why.

I let the doc put me on geodon. It’s an antipsychotic. Hear me out. I had it on good authority that it could, in fact, help with the mixed episodes I’ve been experiencing a lot lately.

Problem is…turns out I’m allergic to the shit. Severely.

I’ve been throwing up for 2-3 days straight, no chaser. Seriously. I chased it with anti-vomityourgutsup juice, and I vomited the anti-vomityourgutsup juice out.

Big ass rash spreading across the back of my neck.

Bubbles on my arm (blister).

Dizziness and worsening headache.

Confusion. Randomly stopping myself mid-thought or even mid-sentence.

Itching.

Massive edema.

Fucking. (Yeah right. No such luck.)

Torn up guts.

Itching. Did I mention this COOKIEMONSTERFORSAKEN ITCHING?! MOTHERFUCK, I ITCH.I’d pay somebody to scratch my itch, but I think that’s called solicitation.

cookiemonster

Anyway. The one thing it geodon DIDN’T fuck with, clearly, is my ragingly filthy mind. So there’s that. And also my cookiediction. Me want cookies. Now. (Also. May I borrow someone’s kids so I can “not” teach them this lesson by what is obviously The Real Cookie Monster, please stand up?)

The one thing I DIDN’T get as a side effect was the heart-racing arrhythmia. It’s a damn good thing, because if that box had gotten ticked, he was going to have to admit me. My heart was not only NOT racing, it was lower than he’s ever recorded it. 42. I think? OH MY GOD, MY HEART IS THE MEANING OF LIFE?! I KNEW IT!

Anyturtles. My GP said I met every single other criterion for the Rare and Severe reactions. Yay me!

A man once told me I was rare. Now I know what he meant. RARE AND SEVERE AND FUCKED UP.

I kid.

Mostly.

Except I don’t kid. You kid. Keep the kids over there. Because I’m MANGRY.

Because.

Because.

On top of forvomigen, the nausea med he gave me that doesn’t work, he also gave steroids. Lots and lots of steroids that I have to take for six fucking days.

He asked if I had any issue taking short-term steroids to stop my allergic responses and wipe out the rash. I said no, except Hulk. He was mildly puzzled, then laughed when I said YOU know….then I made rage face and said Hulk Angry! Only some of that actually happened. I’ll let you work it out.

So I’m on steroids for a week. And I’m sweating and angry and itching and sore. AND NOT FOR ANY OF THE FUN REASONS.

And I can’t make my brainhole focus on the things I WANTED to write about.

Fucking fuckstick douchecanoe handledick. Oooo handledick. New one. That works a myriad of ways, that one.

Anyway. I’m gonna fuck off outta here.

Just wanted to say Hi.

Just wanted to say I’m Pissed Off.

Just wanted to say I Miss You.

Just wanted to say Bye Fuckers, Because ME MANGRY.

Oh. And for what it’s worth? Either I was on one of my upswings already, or geodon was actually helping me. Because starting the drug coincided with the start of a major uptick in my moods and mindset. So. Let’s hope it wasn’t the geodon. Because now I’m pissed that I can’t take it anymore. WAAAAAAH. Look at me. Crying like a bitch. MANGRY.

P.S. If that mangry music isn’t your thing, mute it and watch. Because Sully Erna is in Fine Fucking Form here. Shirtless. Shoeless. Perfect jeans. Yum. You know what? I’ll take my steroids with a side of Sully. (Unfortunately, that’s the only good part of the video. The rest of it is wrestling or boxing or nascar or some other lame shit where grownass boys beat each other up for money.) (Hey, don’t start in on me! I told you I’m mangry! It’s in the title! FUCKING STEROIDS. GRAWR.) (But now I’m sleepy and itchy and mangry and hungry and sweaty and ARRGGGHHHHHHH I SAID GOOD DAY!)

P.S. Numberonius Twovicus. How about a preview of last weekend, hm?

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Recipe for a Panic Attack: Recognizing the Signs and Admitting My Role in Sinking Down (A Very Long Post)

I had a full-blown panic attack yesterday. I had been in a slow downward spiral for days and didn’t recognize the signs and symptoms. Some of them are typical; some of them are my own that I’ve identified in myself. There was a progression of “events,”, which culminated in purging my thoughts in yesterday’s post (thoughts which are honest and real and truly how I feel), then being slammed with an acute panic attack shortly thereafter. And I did not see it coming. But I should have.

Yes, there’s a lot of shit going on in my life right now. Some good. Some bad. Some great. Some awful. But it’s not all circumstantial. I am somewhat culpable in what happened with me yesterday.

I am writing about this today for three specific reasons:

  1. I need to hold myself accountable, but also remember to treat myself gently and kindly. And it feels really fucking good to be able to identify and recognize what’s wrong and how I got to this point.
  2. I hope that sharing this helps someone, or someone you know, to recognize the signs, to take the steps necessary to care for your physical and mental health, and to be kind to yourself.
  3. I want to thank you all for your support and love – because let’s face it, it’s a form of familial love when you gather around someone and (virtually) wrap your arms around that someone, and I fucking felt it. And I love you for it. I’ve been more positive lately, and I want to explain what (I think) happened to me yesterday.

Here goes.

Circumstantial “Triggers” (i.e. Personal Shit)

I’m gonna tackle this part bullet point style, because some of it you already know and the rest I’m not prepared to talk (in depth) about yet.

  • I am being bullied at work. My character, my work ethic, everything. Full on assault. My supervisor is aware of it. And he knows that the problem is Queen Bitch. He refuses to do anything about it and, in fact, is about to move me to another area instead of addressing the problem with her. This means I will be away from the other coworkers whom I’ve grown quite close to. And they will still have to deal with her, because the super doesn’t want to set her off by moving her for what would be the fourth or fifth time.
  • I have problems that I can’t afford to deal with right now. Arthritis, connective tissue disease (unspecified), fibromyalgia, periodontitis, chronic headaches and migraines. And that’s not to mention the mental health issues I have, which you already know about. I do not spend frivolously (aside from a book here or there or a smoothie, but it’s not egregious). I am responsible and (mostly) frugal. I’ve worn the same clothes for years, and my car is sixteen years old and in need of repairs. I am not complaining about this. I am thankful that I have clothes. I am thankful that I have personal transportation. I am thankful that I am able to be employed and am. However, I make just enough to keep my bills paid (let’s not talk about student loans) and have just enough cushion to buy a book or smoothie now and then. If I were to lose my job today, I could make it two months. I have enough to do that. That’s both wonderful and terrible at the same time. I am 35 years old. I am educated. I am smart. I am competent and capable. And I am fed up with doing the same job that the two men in my department do, and they both make over ten grand more than I do. (Whew. My bad. I did not intend for this bullet to turn into a rant. Ahem.)
  • I am planning a big move this year, on a shoestring budget. I realize some of you don’t agree with this choice. And I get it. But, as previously mentioned, I am 35 years old. And you know what? I’m sick of living someone else’s life. I’m sick of riding in the backseat. I’m sick of following everyone’s rules, rules, rules. There is no tomorrow. There is today. And I need to finally fucking seize the day. I’ve wanted to live in the Pacific Northwest all my life. I do not want to die before I’ve lived the life I want to live. But it’s a costly choice. (Anything worth having is worth fighting for, yeah?) I will have to keep my stuff in storage indefinitely. But with the help of a good blogger friend, I’ve discovered that you can find tiny little apartments outside of Seattle proper, for just a little more than what I’m currently paying as a mortgage. So now it’s getting there that is a bit tricky on my budget.
  • I am trying to prepare my house to sell and then sell it. It’s in need of repairs, but I’m close. Closer than I was, at least.
  • I’m dealing with a personal issue that has been festering for going on five years now. And it’s all coming to a head. Finally. Finally. But it’s intensely stressful.
  • I’ve begun my job hunt in Seattle, and that’s always stressful. Part of the stress here is that I know what the most responsible and safest bet is, but it’s not what I want. I want to finally do something with writing or copy-editing. If I’m not going out to save the world, at least I can do something I actually enjoy doing. We live at least half our lives at work. And that can ruin half of your life if you fucking hate your job.
  • Emotional Upheaval. And that’s all I’m going to say about that. For now.

That’s enough personal bullshit. Most of it you already know. But now I’m spilling it again for the purpose of putting my current mindset into perspective and how that, coupled with other factors, resulted in a major panic attack.

Musical Indications

Over the last few weeks, my choices in music have gotten progressively darker and angrier. Now. Here’s the thing. I have an “angry” playlist, but I typically only listen to it when I’m already angry. But sometimes…sometimes it’s a major sign that I’m heading down into deep depression. A steady stream of angry music is dangerous for me. It always has been. It almost always starts out as anger with me. I didn’t recognize it. I wasn’t alert to it. I’ve been feeling so good lately that I simply didn’t see it coming.

It started out fairly tame. I listen to a lot of 90s music, and man was 90s rock depressing. But I listen to a lot of it and am usually okay. I get into it. I jam out. I get “in my feels” (I hate that phrase.). And I’m cool. I’m good.

It started out with some Pearl Jam. “Black.” (My favorite for deeply personal reasons which would be fairly obvious if you pay attention to lyrics.) “Daughter.” (Which makes me absolutely livid, again for obvious reasons.) “Alive.” (Which makes me angrily happy that I’ve made it through what I’ve been through. Because Fuck You for stomping me into the ground and trying to keep me there.)

It then progressed to Evanescence and Linkin Park. The angry ones. I listened to them for days and days. Repeatedly. At work. At home.

That progressed to Eminem. Oh I listened to Eminem even longer than the others. I was getting angrier and angrier. More and more Fuck. You. Fuck. You.

Which then led to days of things like Rob Zombie and Godsmack. Especially Godsmack. A Whole Fucking Bunch of Godsmack. Particularly:

Yeah. I listened to those four in particular Over and Over and Over again. Then I listened to them some more. Over and Over and Over. At work. At home. And Over again. (Also watched the vids because Sully Erna.) This obviously had a negative impact on me. As I’ve said, I listen to angry music now and then. But not for lengthy periods of time. I have fully immersed myself in anger and rage over the last few weeks. Bad. Fucking. News. I was fucking asking for it. And I was also seething beneath the surface and didn’t realize it. And this shit. This shit was gasoline on an ember. How did I not see what was happening?

As you know from yesterday, this anger (as it usually does with me) suddenly shifted to darkness. Depression. Hopelessness. Alice in Chains.

And the final nail in the coffin? My own doing of my own undoing?

I Broke the Cardinal Rule of Psychiatric Medicine

Yep. I’m prepared for this confession to tick some people off. I was read the riot act over this confession yesterday and rightfully so.

I know the rules about not stopping your meds. Never ever ever stop your meds and especially not “cold turkey” as it were. I’ve been through this with arthritis meds. There were some that were doing more harm than good and some that I simply couldn’t afford. So I very slowly and carefully weaned myself off of them. Like a smart, conscientious girl would do.

I also know it’s dangerous to stop meds cold turkey. Long-term physical or psychiatric meds that your body comes to rely upon on a chemical level. I’m wise to the fact that doing so could cause any number of physical withdrawal symptoms, suicidal ideation, self-harm, you name it.

And do you know what I did? I semi-stopped one of my meds. Straight up. No weaning. No consulting my doctor. Just stopped.

It wasn’t why you think. It wasn’t one of those situations where the person starts to feel better and then thinks, “I don’t need to take this shit anymore. I feel better.” As though you’ve taken an antibiotic and your infection is gone for good now. That’s not why I did it.

Why I Did ItEvery. Single. Day. Since I started taking this cocktail of psychiatric meds, I’ve been fucking tired. I mean wiped out. No. You don’t understand. That’s not good enough to explain it. When I’m at work, I feel as though at any moment my head is going to slam onto my desk and I’m going to pass right the fuck out. I’ve nodded off in traffic, y’all. That does not happen to me. That could kill me AND you. I’ll be in mid-conversation with the geek squad and totally zone out. I can’t focus on my work. I can’t focus on you. I can’t read. My vision blurs. And all I want to do is sleep. Only I can’t. And even when I do, the feeling never goes away.

So a few days ago, I was picking up a scrip and the pharmacist wanted to ask some questions of me. Since I’d been on the meds for a while, he asked if he could do a little assessment. He asked me how I’d been feeling, whether I thought they were working. I was at the drive-thru so I could barely hear him (yes, a drive-thru pharmacy). At first, I said, “Fine! Everything’s fine.” But I heard myself and shook my head.

I have sleep disturbances. I wake up in the night.

“Okay. You’re taking the Lexapro at night, aren’t you? Stop it. Take it in the morning.”

Done. The disturbances have mostly stopped.

“Anything else?”

I can’t go to the bathroom.

“Hmm. Nothing should be causing that. Anything else?”

Yeah. No resolution on that TMI issue.

I’m tired all the time.

“How tired?”

It’s difficult for me to be awake talking to you right now. I perpetually feel like I haven’t slept in days and will pass out at any given moment.

“That’s not right. That has to be one of the meds.”

So I start asking him: Clonidine? No, not if you’re taking it at night. Klonopin? Not to the extent you’re describing. And not at the dose you’re on. Lamictal? Not if you’re taking it at night. At this point I’m getting frustrated. He should be telling me instead of me asking one at a time. Vistaril? How are you taking it? Two capsules, three times daily. (His eyes bug out of his head at this.) THAT is the problem. THAT is why you’re feeling this way. Sweet! So I’ll just stop taking it. I’ve never thought that one was helping anyway, because I’m still quite anxious. Do. Not. Stop. Taking it! However, it would be safe to go to one pill in the morning, one at lunch, and two at night. Then talk with your doctor. Okay! Thank you!

I didn’t mention the sexual issues I’m having. Mostly because too shy. But also because I’m not in a physical relationship with anyone but myself at the moment, so it’s not an urgent matter.

So what do I do? Fuck Vistaril. Fuck it. I started skipping both the morning and lunchtime doses altogether, then taking my two at night. I didn’t consider it as being like the others – Lexapro and Lamictal. This went on for days, and I thought nothing of it. I just changed my dosage and thought nothing else of it.

All of these factors combined and merged into one viscous, throbbing mass of creeping doom.

The Result (Payback is a Bitch)

  • I started feeling a general sadness.
  • I started feeling lazier.
  • Anger became a more dominant emotion than usual.
  • I became frustrated.
  • I became restless.
  • My legs started bouncing again.
  • My speech got faster.
  • I started doing more nervous twitching and hand wringing again.
  • I started dwelling on emotional pain: what a bitch my mother is for abandoning me, what a sick fuck my father is for abusing me, what unloving assholes my siblings are for shunning me because I cannot forgive my abusive father, what a self-righteous prick Queen Bitch is, how emotionally cruel my ex could be, how hurtful it was when The Aussie threw me away, how sad I am that I’m not where I want to be right now. I hadn’t dwelt in several weeks. And still. Still I wasn’t alarmed. Still I didn’t see it.
  • And then the Big Bad Scary: Suicidal Ideation reared its ugly head for the first time in quite a while since I began medication therapy. Now. NOW I was scared. But I blamed it on the meds. They’ve suddenly stopped working for some reason, I told myself. It’s NOT the meds helping you afterall, if you feel this way. God, I really wish I would die in my sleep. Yeah. Now I was scared. But I didn’t understand it.

Yesterday I woke up in a strange mood. I felt simultaneously hyper and subdued. Weird, right? That’s totally contradictory, but it’s the only way I know how to describe it. I felt emotionally subdued and as though I really didn’t want to be around anyone or talk to anyone or leave the house or bother with anything at all. But I felt physically hyper. My legs would not stop bouncing. My speech alternated between rapid and sluggish. My heart was racing. I couldn’t sit still. All the while…subdued. I had zero appetite, and my appetite has been low for days. But now, even the thought of food kind of made me strangely mad. And I was listening to Layne Staley sing some of the most depressing music there is, but I was in no state to handle it or appreciate it for its haunting beauty. My mind, my thoughts, turned into severe emotional turmoil. And I needed to get it out. I needed to purge.

Afterward? The Panic Attack that I didn’t realize was already brewing hit me. Hard. Forcefully. Punishingly. Terrifyingly.

The Panic Attack

It had already begun, and I didn’t even know it. I had no awareness of what was happening except that I felt like shit and wanted to go home. This is hard. This has all been hard to get out. But I’m going to keep going, no matter how ashamed I feel – because I know that I Should NOT feel ashamed. And maybe this will help someone to identify their own signs and symptoms, or those of someone they love. And it’s good for me. It reinforces these things for me. So. Here’s what my panic attack looked like.

  1. Heightened frustration.
  2. Serious stomach distress.
  3. Heart racing.
  4. Restless.
  5. Bouncing my legs.
  6. Rocking back and forth in my chair.
  7. Eyes darting to and fro, nervously, anxiously.
  8. Breathing rapidly, suffocatingly.
  9. Hot. Had to shed layers hot, despite it being cold in here.
  10. A strange out of body feeling, as though I was watching this happen but was helpless to stop it. As though I was detached and other from myself.
  11. Mind racing, racing, racing, making less and less sense, getting more and more frantic, growing more and more irrational.
  12. Feeling crazy, insane, like I was seriously going out of my fucking mind.
  13. Feeling like this was never going to end. Ever. And this state would now be permanent.
  14. Gritting my teeth, rocking, rocking, leaning forward and holding my head in my hands.
  15. Squeezing my head.
  16. Shaking. Violently shaking.
  17. Pulling my hair.
  18. Wanting to hit myself. But I was in the room with others. They couldn’t see me, but it’s the only reason I wasn’t screaming in rage.
  19. And finally I had to run to the bathroom to throw up.

panic'

At some point in the midst of all of this, I thought about the Vistaril and had a brief question in my mind. Is that why this is happening?

And no, I don’t think that’s all that was wrong. I know it wasn’t. Because I’d already had that anger and rage building, building, building. But I do believe that I made a mistake in doing what I did with the medication. I do believe it was a factor in what happened to me yesterday. And I do regret not listening to the pharmacist.

When it was over, I felt exhausted and spent. I took my Vistaril (I had it with me). Talked with a WordPress friend about what was going on (actually during the panic attack, too) – and I’m more grateful than you know.

This morning I took my single Vistaril. And now I’m about to take my lunchtime one. And I’m tired. I’m tired as fuck. I could go to sleep on my desk. Right. Fucking. Now. But I’m going to take it. And when I meet Dr. Feelgood for my next appointment, I’m going to request we try something different for anxiety. Because this is not working for me.

Lessons Learned

  • Be more aware of your behaviors and reactions.
  • Pay attention to your patterns and routines. When you break them, reach out. If it’s fixable, fix it. If you haven’t changed anything, fucking reach out. For me, I could have told people here. People who may have recognized that I was spiraling out of emotional control.
  • Do. Not. DO NOT significantly alter your meds without consulting your doctor or pharmacist. And fucking LISTEN to what they tell you. HEED it.
  • Do not settle for meds that make you feel poorly. Be your own advocate and be ballsier. Ask for better meds. Do it. FUCKING DO IT. Your life may literally depend upon it.

In the aftermath, I still feel subdued. I’m still shaky and bouncy. My appetite is good. I just had a full lunch. I don’t think I ate at all yesterday, which isn’t normal for me. I’m tired as fuck. I’m still down.

But it is better than yesterday. By a long shot. Maybe I am sliding down into a depressive state. And if I am, that’s okay. It’s part of who I am. How I am. But I must take better care of myself and pay better attention to my mind, body and spirit.

And never ever forget to breathe.

And please, if you’re suffering, reach out. If you think you have no one to reach out to, reach out to me. We’re all in this thing called life together.

So I thank you. I thank you for being here for me. For encouraging me. For commiserating with me. For telling me to chin up. For telling me to stop fucking listening to that bullshit while I’m in the throes of a depressive cycle. For telling me you get it. For telling me you’ve been there. For simply being here. I thank you.

Today’s Tunes: Brought to You by a Chillin’ Stephanie

It’s always a positive sign that I’m feeling better and more mentally stable when I start digging into music again. When I’m at the depths of my depression, I can’t even reach for music – my soul’s food. Given all the music I’ve been listening to and the string of music-related posts, I have yet another sign that I’m steadily on the upswing. Thanks to a myriad of factors, no doubt. My wonderful Peopleaneous, a few in particular who have seen the darkest sides of me and helped me through, another particular one who thrills me to no end, and the medications I’ve been put on have no doubt played a significant role as well. Never again will anyone hear me say psychiatric medication is bullshit.

I feel compelled to share what my soul is filled with this morning. Soothing me and tugging at me and pushing me and pulling me with its raw passion and purity. This, my friends, is art. It’s all instrumental, but you can hear Keith getting into it. Crying out at times, because he is music.

Keith Jarrett’s Changeless Album (4 songs in total)

Dancing

Endless

Lifeline

I can’t fucking find “Lifeline”. Ripped off!

Ecstasy

Ahhhhhh yes. Enjoy, my friends. Enjoy.

Starlight: An Anthem for 2016

This song means more and more to me as time moves on. And it’s definitely a major anthem for my 2016.

If you’re not into music (what the fuck is wrong with you), let me break it down for you. Check out these lyrics, and you can read it instead.

Starlight

Far away
This ship is taking me far away
Far away from the memories
Of the people who care if I live or die

The starlight
I will be chasing a starlight
Until the end of my life
I don’t know if it’s worth it anymore

Hold you in my arms
I just wanted to hold
You in my arms

My life
You electrify my life
Let’s conspire to ignite
All the souls that would die just to feel alive

Now I’ll never let you go
If you promised not to fade away
Never fade away

Our hopes and expectations
Black holes and revelations
Our hopes and expectations
Black holes and revelations

Hold you in my arms
I just wanted to hold
You in my arms

Far away
This ship is taking me far away
Far away from the memories
Of the people who care if I live or die

And I’ll never let you go
If you promised not to fade away
Never fade away

Our hopes and expectations
Black holes and revelations
Our hopes and expectations
Black holes and revelations

Hold you in my arms
I just wanted to hold
You in my arms
I just wanted to hold

Playlist Party: A Fanfunkingtastic Musical Meet & Greet

Gather round, Peopleaneous, for it is time for another Playlist Party. It’s been a while since I did the last one, and it was a blast. So let’s do it again, shall we? Again and again and again…wait. Sorry. Got a little carried away.

Also, we’ve had lots of new additions to the kickassingest community on WordPress, so let’s make this a combo punch: The Funkiest Meet & Greet Playlist Party on the block!

I’m in a total funk mood this morning. And I don’t mean like, “I’m in such a funk.” I mean, Can’t Stop the Funk! So here are the rules, except I hate rules, so here’s the gist of how I’d like things to go down. But y’all are your own people, so feel free to wing it:

  • I want your body links! Drop a link to your about page or one of your favorite posts and maybe a little about you. However you wanna shake it down, go on witcha bad self. Feel free to shout-out one of your favorite blogs, too.
  • While you’re at it, it would be fanfunkingtastic if you got funky with me. My funk playlist is woefully inadequate, so why don’t we build one together? Y’all are awesome and seem to love boogying down with music posts. So let’s do this thang chickenwang!
  • Oh! Oh! Also! Feel free to drop a link even if you don’t have a song – I know we don’t all dig the same music!
  • Oh! Oh! Oh! Also! Again! It can be current or oldschool funk. Can ya dig it?

I’ll get us started off with a few off of my current playlist. This isn’t all of them, but I’ll give you some of my current faves.

A FANFUNKINGTASTIC MEET & GREET

The one I was listening to this morning on the way to work. Because of this burning in my soul:

Because sometimes a white girl gotta play that funky music:

Because sometimes you believe in things you don’t understand:

Rock me again and again and again and again and again…

Because it’s slippery when it’s wet:

Let’s set this bitch on FI-YAH!

Because I’m a bayou girl and I got fire, too!

Because I wanna get down, get down:

Because I want you to funk my life up:

Because who can get enough of The Commodores?

And this list is not complete without a little James Brown. Good God!

~

Your turn, y’all! Let’s get funked up!

Playlist Party: Help Build an Upbeat Playlist

‘Sup Peopleaneous?

Brief Update on Diane, The Wackadoodle Counselor

I know some of you are curious as to how my second session with Diane went. Let’s say it went poorly, and I will not be back to see her. For now, let me leave you with this tidbit: There were a few moments in the new “feelings” journal that had words like: hyper, smiley, playful, mischievous. She latched on to “playful” with a vengeance. And, knowing very little about me, said that any time I ever felt hyper and especially playful that it was at least as negative as my hopeless moments. She said any time I demonstrate playfulness that I’m doing either one of two things: manipulating people into laughing so that they would give me positive reinforcement that I didn’t get as a child or trying to cheer someone up like I always did with my mother.

It is a mistake to see playfulness as positive. You need to work on that at least as much as your depression.

I found it highly irresponsible of her to tell me that all of my brighter moments were at least as negative as moments when I’m wishing I hadn’t woken up that day. How much of a fucking moron does one have to be to say that to a woman with known suicidal ideation? Good thing I mostly heard it for what it was: the ravings of an absolute fucking moron.

Oh, oh, oh! I almost forgot this one!

You revealed a lot in few words. Next time, I expect to hear about how your childhood led you down the path of becoming a sexual deviant.

I nearly laughed in her smirking, self-satisfied face. I refrained. With great difficulty. I wanted to march to her bookshelf, grab the nearest bullshit textbook she was spewing this nonsense from, and chuck it in her face. Again, I refrained. With only slightly less difficulty.

In the effort of full disclosure, those aren’t exact quotes. But I did record that bitch this time, so I can go back and listen if I wanna. Right now, I don’t want to hear any more out of that woman’s mouth. Suffice it to say those words are at least very close to exact quotes.

My mood ever since has been dark…empty and numb when I’m lucky. It’s not all her. Work is a son of a bitch right now. More specifically, Queen Bitch must have something sharp and rusty stuck up her asshole. It’s the only thing that can explain her psychotic behavior these last two weeks. (And yes, I do know the definition of a psychotic.)

So. As a giant fuck you to both of those bitches, I’d like to intentionally change my mood for tonight (and hopefully the entire weekend).

~ PLAYLIST PARTY ~

I’ve had the idea to ask y’all to help me work on my playlists for some time. But Chevvy8 crystallized this for me in a conversation we had about those times you need some good ole music therapy. I believe Chevvy called those the times when you “just gotta shake it!” So that’s what I want to do now!

I’ll start us off with several of the songs I keep on hand to kickstart some fast-paced, upbeat funtimes. Not all of mine are exactly dancey songs, but those fit in extra-well on an upbeat playlist!

Please, please please join in and drop your upbeat tunes in the comments! Let’s party, Peopleaneous!

First up, Chevvy starts us out with a little OutKast. Can’t really go wrong with OutKast!

My #1 stand-by for times just like this: Hump de Bump!

She Wants to Move (Yes, yes she does.)

A little Swedish House Mafia never hurt anybody.

And now I gotta cut loose.

Usher Baby

Here’s to shit getting a little Out of Control.

Because it’s been a bitch of a week.

Uptown Funk (me up)

Bounce Baby! (Bonus points for being local.)

I Wanna Dance with Somebody (I really do!)

Let’s start a Quiet Riot.

And last but certainly not least: Feel Right, y’all.

~

Alright, Peopleaneous! YOUR TURN!

Battle of the Bloggers: A Musical Variety Show(down)

Gather round Peoplleaneous,

Before I get into the post, I want you all to know how Truly Fucking Grateful I am for your outpouring of support, encouragement and just straight up being here for me. Completely unsolicited, you gathered ’round me and have kept me buoyed with your incredible show of love for someone who is (mostly) a stranger to you.

You have humbled me and proven me wrong, once again, about the quality of people in this world. I’ve said it before, and I’ll keep saying it – some of the most awesome people on earth have inexplicably gathered in this little corner. And I am a lucky girl for being the recipient of your incredible kindness. Even if I don’t print off that post, I am printing off all of your words to me. You moved me to tears, made me laugh, showed solidarity and made damn sure I don’t feel alone. You rock. And I love you for it. Thank you, endlessly. Thank you.

~

Ahem. Now. About Josh. Before I slay him with music, let me say – in all sincerity – he has a kickass blog over at My Friday Post. Everyone has a few people they have to read, and Josh is one of mine. Good stuff over there, and if you don’t check him out and give him a follow…well, you suck. Go on. Get over there. I’ll wait. (I’m waiting. Fuck’s sake, you’re slow! Oh. There you are. Good. Let’s do this thang.)

As luck would have it, I was planning to do a music post today. I intended to solicit you, my fine feathered peoplleaneous, to assist me with building a playlist. But that will have to wait for another day, because a certain aforementioned someone has just thrown down.

Now. Josh would have you believe he is taking me up on a challenge I issued him.

Josh likes to tell stories.

Big fat whoppers of stories.

He threw shade with a backhanded compliment, like a pro. And when I called him out on it, he challenged me!

Exhibit A: The post that started it all.

Exhibit B: If you dig down in the comments, you’ll see what I’m talkin’ about. And since I don’t want to make you work, let me show you:

“Just saying that was funny. I appreciate your open-minded musical tastes. I don’t know many people with musical tastes as varied as me, you seem to be near that level.” ~Josh

“But Stephanie!,” you exclaim. “He was totally complimenting you!” To which I direct you to that last little piece where he said I’m near his level! Near! He may as well have scraped me off the bottom of his shoe like an unwanted gob of double bubble!

I think we can all agree that was a direct challenge. And I accept! (What? Dude. It totally was! He started it! Just hush and enjoy the show, then!)

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This may or may not have been included in my response.

If you haven’t already done it, I suggest you read his “Generic Music Post” before continuing here. (Dudes, even his title is backhanded. Like he doesn’t even consider it a challenge. I see what he’s doing. I SEE!) You gotta check out his musical selection for Round 1 of our duel.

But now it’s my turn. Oh yes. Brace yourselves, because someone’s about to get slayed. And it ain’t gonna be me.

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And today on Mixed Metaphors: I’m about to hit a home run, bitches!

Here are some of my favorite listens, also in no particular order:

Alright, folks! That’s the end of Round 1. I guess y’all are supposed to vote or something. And I won’t even bribe you with cookies. (I bake the best cookies. But I’m not bribing you. I don’t need to. But I also bake brownies. And you know what I’m talkin’ about.)

We all know who won Round 1. And hey, Josh? I told ya, homeboy…

Now Just Look What Y’all Did

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. To all y’all. You my homies; you know that, right? I can’t don’t want to express just how deeply dark and frightening my thoughts have been. And I only say even that much so that you know how amazing it is that you’ve had me smiling and laughing and choking on laughter and laughing until I cried and laughing until my belly and chest ached…all damn day. Y’all my homies, for real. And I hope I can be there for you one day, the way you were here for me today.

I’m gonna show you what mood you’ve put me in on this usually lonesome Friday night. First as a big fat thank you and proof of how you’ve put a raft beneath me today. And second to throw down because of Andrew calling me out over here.

Here ya go. My peppers:

This song has never failed to lift my spirits and make me move. Enjoy.

A Musical Interlude: Clint Mansell

I love Clint Mansell. I think I always have, only I didn’t know it until someone put a name to the music that moves so many. Best known for his work as a composer, Mansell has scored films such as The Fountain, Requiem for a Dream, and Black Swan. And, you may have noticed, those are all three Darren Aronofsky films, but Mansell has scored for others as well.

I don’t know if I’ve told y’all…but The Fountain ranks among my favorite films. And it is no exaggeration to say that it would be a different film entirely without Mansell’s touch. It is dark and moving. Poignant and ethereal. Emotional and painful. Hopeful and yearning. Surreal and earthy. Life and death and resurrection and everything between. Soul shattering pain and redemption. I don’t even know what I’m saying, really. It’s everything.

I cried. Nay, I wept. I was an absolute wreck in the aftermath of The Fountain. For days. Days. I had been warned, at least a couple of years prior to watching it…I had been warned to steer clear of it. But then The Aussie told me it was important. I almost didn’t make it through it, quite literally choking on my sobs more than once. But I did. And it will always be part of me now. Perhaps it always was, and that’s why it moved me so.

All of these rambles to lead you into this song:

Listen to it. Please. I beseech you to listen and not with ears only, but with all of you. If you listen, you will know where I am today and why I’m not very talkative (blogative?). I’ve had it on loop for an hour. And if you listen, I’d love to know what the song does to you. It shakes me to my core and somehow fuels my depression while also comforting me. It makes me feel…understood. Felt.

But don’t listen to me. Listen to the song. Please. And then, listen to the entire soundtrack. It’s instrumental, so you can listen to it while doing other things…if you’re not too much of a wreck to function.

Below is the entire soundtrack, but if you’re wanting all the feels, you may as well go for it and watch the film.

If you haven’t seen The Fountain, go forth. But don’t say I didn’t warn you. If you are a sensitive creature at all, it will shatter you. But it’s a shattering you must endure.

TheFountain

Yeah. I’m gonna need to medicate with Billy Idol or something soon. Or a New Girl marathon! Yeah! No. Bad idea. Why must memories so firmly attach themselves to everything?

Anyone have any tips for really good comedy? Gimme gimme!

Adele put on her sad suit. And the world swooned.

Gather round, Peoplleaneous. I want to talk about Adele’s new song, “Hello.” Here’s the video for it…you may as well give it a listen before I tell you what I think about it:

Like many depressed or even just sad women in a certain age bracket, I loved Adele’s 21 album. Talk about catharsis and angst. I bled so many emotions out of my tearducts, I’m surprised I didn’t end up in the hospital recovering from dehydration and extreme heartsickness.

Adele’s voice was beautiful and fresh and haunting. Some of her songs could have been written by me (emotionally, meaningfully – but not beautifully as she). Adele broke stereotypes and records. Adele broke barriers and hearts.

But here’s where I’m uncomfortable. The whole world seems stuck with its initial impressions of Adele and her music. (Look, I realize there was an album prior to 21, but 21 is when most of us were introduced with her.)

I’ve just heard the one song off the new album 25 thus far: “Hello.” Quite frankly, I’m underwhelmed. It’s beautiful. Adele is beautiful. Her voice is beautiful. The song is sad and angsty, full of longing and heartache. But those feelings don’t connect. And I think I know why. Or at least I can hypothesize.

Adele isn’t those things anymore. Adele isn’t full of longing and heartache and angst. She’s a newlywed (well, not so much anymore…but since the sadness of 21, she is) and a new mother. Yes, spare me the “newlyweds and new moms can suffer heartache and pain as well.” I’m quite aware of that, thank you very much.

Listening to the new song, I just don’t feel it. There’s no emotional impact for me as there was with some of her earlier songs. This one is simpler and far less powerful than previous ballads. Perhaps I’m being too hard on Adele, but previous songs blew me away. This didn’t come close. And if this is the the lead single, I’m not hopeful that the rest of the album will, either.

These are the thoughts that came to me as I listened to this song (several times through): She isn’t sad anymore. I can feel her faking it. She doesn’t mean what she’s singing. Her voice is no less beautiful, but the power is gone because she doesn’t fucking mean it. Adele and her producers knew what sold last time and wanted to replicate those successes. So they put Adele in her Sad Suit, tooled around with some of her older and better songs (think “Someone Like You” and “Don’t You Remember”), and they put her back on stage to mime her old sadness at us.

Does it still beat the shit out of 83.2% of the current market she’s competing in? Certainly. I’m not saying she’s suddenly without talent. But what I am saying is that it gets under my skin when the whole fucking world – supposed serious music critics included – refuses to actually critique her work. I mean, for fucks sake, the damn song is roughly SEVENTY-FIVE PERCENT CHORUS. That is unacceptable from someone we should be holding to a higher standard.

If you’ve grown and your life and perspectives have changed or shifted (which naturally could have by now), then your music should still reflect what’s inside you. If we can’t grow with you, then you’ll find new fans that do.

This isn’t Katy Perry spinning another club song or some boy band telling girls they’re pretty just the way they are, wash, rinse, repeat on every single track. This is someone who told stories and moved us with her heart. Don’t put on a fucking sad suit and start wash, rinse, repeating that shit. It’s beneath you, and it’s an insult to those of us who are paying attention.

Come on, man. We can do better than that.

Can’t we?

~

On another note, I’ll be watching that video at least once more for that nice piece of eye candy. And I’m not talking about Adele. Hello.