Category Archives: Bipolar

The Old Razzle Dazzle

I haven’t performed in a while. Actually I don’t remember the last time. Actually I probably could remember if I really thought about it but I don’t wanna. OH right, in Regina.

I am performing tomorrow in Prince Albert at the Mann Gallery. I need still to write my monologue and make a simple powerpoint. I have props. I have some ideas floating around my head. I am going to adapt it to a video after I’m done. I really need to write. I’ve been so resistant to it today. Which is why I am writing here, because sometimes blogging helps kick start my creative thinking. Now you all know my secret! This entire blog is actually creative process byproduct. OKAY and also an experiment into private/public boundaries and crossing them.

I’ve been on a higher dose of Wellbutrin for a while now (well probably not even a week yet I think I started on Friday or Thursday) and I am still mildly weepy at times. Which is awkward. Like I don’t even know why sometimes, it just comes and goes. I’ve been posting silly gifs and videos about depression on my Facebook. Cause I have this strict rule about not making the casual fb follower feel responsible for solving my mental health problems. I do have a small circle of friends I talk to about this stuff. And I have a therapist. So it’s not so bad. And I have this blog, which has been handy over the years. And I have meds.

Anyway, I still get nervous when I perform. I’m not so nervous about screenings, which I am also doing tomorrow. I don’t have as extensive a performance history as I do a filmmaker attending screenings history. Plus it’s just easier to sit back and listen and watch something you’ve already finished and made and don’t have to do anything else for but answer questions. I’ve always used written notes for performing. It sort of helps.

Anyway, tomorrow I am going to do a live infomercial/motivational speaker inspired performance about a fictional 2 Spirit Dating Website. That gives gifts for joining! I hope it goes okay! I already did write a script for the video, I just need to adapt and expand on it. I’m aiming for ten minutes, then about 35-40 minutes of my favourite videos. After tomorrow my main reason for being in Saskatchewan is FINISHED and I can go meet up with friends and do social things AND work on finishing my video game. I have a small handful of people I want to see.


I wrote most of my blabby blab! I’m gonna finish it in the morning. I simplified the powerpoint to ONE slide (of a Dollarama dreamcatcher). I think simple is better. I have all these props I have to use anyway.

I also have to plan out my video screening. I haven’t decided which ones to show. I have a few ideas though.

God I’ve been busy. It’s good though, I like being busy as an artist/filmmaker/whatever I am.

OH I got a message that Boi Oh Boi is going to be screening at the Scottish Queer International Film Festival in Glasgow on Oct 1st in a program about butch/masculine women. So that’s pretty awesome. Also there might be a chance to go there for another thing next year, BUT it is all depending on funding and stuff so nothing is for sure. But it would be cool to travel again soon.

Little Mister is being SUPER cuddly with me right now. When I packed up my bag and got ready to go to the cab, the pups both automatically got into their kennels because they wanted to come with me. They are so smart. And sweet. I think Little Mister is so happy that I brought him on this trip back to Saskatoon. He missed me when I was in Berlin I am sure. Poor lil guy! Sometimes he is very independent and doesn’t care so much about cuddles. Plus I think he likes playing with the other two dogs here.

Anyway, tomorrow I have to be as brilliant as I can be! I hope it’s fun, I think it will be. And plus it helps me advance my script for my video. I might just make one more 2 Spirit video, because I applied for two grants to do two videos last fall and only got the small grant from Toronto Art Council. I hope that’s okay. Anyway, yeah, it might be a really solid video now based on this performance.


I’ve had my Wellbutrin upped! I think it’s going well. I’m still emotional, but I mean, it’s not going to GET RID of my emotions. They kind of have to stay there doing things so I can function as a human being. If I wanted to get rid of my emotions I know several heavy tranquilizers I could request but since I’m not actually in a state where those are required, it’s fine. Ha ha sounds so serious. Really I was just thinking about Zyprexa which I still hate and am glad I don’t take anymore.

So I feel a little cheerier. God, regulating moods is so weird. I wonder how regular people do it? It’s really gonna take a month to see the full effect of this change.

I miss my old psychiatrist tho. She was awesome. She kept paper notes, and had an actual lie down couch in her office although I always just sat in a chair. She always went through the standard questions every session.

Actually so did my GP who changed my meds.

What are they? They ask about your energy levels, your sleep, your appetite, if you are displaying manic symptoms (I forget which ones they ask but my old psychiatrist would always ask if I was sending a bunch of emails because that’s what I did when I was manic in 2007. So long ago!), if you are irritable, and then they ask if you are depressed (but I think they word it differently) and if you have suicidal or self harm thoughts/behaviours. My psychotherapist goes through the same list. I guess it’s the standard Bipolar check in or something. It would get annoying if everyone checked in with me that way. Like friends. The pharmacist. The cashier at No Frills.

It’s been 13 years since I’ve been diagnosed. And 9 years since my last manic episode. I think I am doing pretty good, except for this depression. I think a lot of people accept being depressed because it feels like we’ll never find the perfect balance and the other option is to be manic and that’s just awful and is a really good way to alienate friends and lovers. But surely there must be a decent middle ground.

Today I loaded my pups into their crates and we flew halfway across the country to Saskatoon. They did good. I was worried, but it gets easier every time we do a flight together. Posey didn’t even get carsick and barf on the way to the airport, and she almost ALWAYS barfs. Actually I think her carsickness is starting to go away, because we got a ride home from a lesbian soccer match and she didn’t barf in the car then either. She didn’t even drool.

It’s very weird being here because of course, now Grandpa isn’t here to visit. And I used to visit him all the time, so it feels very out of sorts for him to be just gone. Mom and I are going to drive up to the reserve and visit him and Grandma’s grave. I want to think of something to leave for them. Maybe candies or chocolates. A lot of people there leave cigarettes on the graves, but Grandpa didn’t smoke. He did like chocolate though.

I feel like my life is evolving into a different phase right now. I guess that makes sense. I’m turning 39 next year. That’s almost 40! It’s a nice evolution. I’m starting to not care so much about what other people think.

I saw Dolly Parton this past Friday. She was awesome. I was really impressed to see how casually she incorporated her own accommodations into her performance as an older woman. Like she had different props to sit on, like a pedestal and a pretend porch and a pew and sometimes she sat at a piano and sometimes she just sat on a stool. Like yah! Of course! Don’t make yourself stand all the time and burn out! Also she had a really good system of telling stories around all her songs so that she wasn’t singing ALL the time. It gave her voice a bit of a break. But it was still SUCH an amazing show! She did my three favourite songs and a whole bunch I didn’t even know were hers. Ha ha of course I wanted to go mostly because I loved her in Steel Magnolias. Ha ha ha. We were pretty far from her, she looked like a glowing apparition. But she was awesome. I heard a rumour that she has full tattooed sleeves on her arms, and that’s why she always wears long sleeved shirts. And the crowd was funny because there were so many Christians and so many Queers!

I think I am ready to love someone. I think I’ve been ready for a while. But it’s feeling like I finally have more to give to a relationship than in the past. For one thing, I’ve been sober for four years, and I am mostly out of some old addiction habits I used to have, like behaviours. Just weird things addicts tend to do.

I think my main problem with forming relationships is that I get really impatient and want things to happen really fast, when maybe going slower is a wiser decision. Like I know in the past I’ve been really fast to sleep with women, because I wasn’t sure how else to convince them to stick around. Which is kind of sad. And also it meant that intimacy developed differently than if there had been some more flirting and getting to know each other. And I think, unfortunately, a lot of my exes maybe never would have even been my sweethearts if I had taken the time to get to know them and see how they treat people, me in particular.

Lately my problem is picking people so goddamned unavailable! Actually that’s been an ongoing problem. And it’s not that they are bad people, it’s just that they are not queer or not single or not close by. I don’t know why I get so crushed out so hardcore. I’ve always been that way.

But it’s funny, AND it goes back to the earlier thing in this post. My cousin told me that because we’re bipolar, it’s just the way we are. We feel things a lot more deeply than other people. Which to some people might seem sweet, and to other people might seem creepy. Like that emotional resonance is just dialed way up when you have a mood disorder.

The last woman I had sex with was also bipolar. I thought we could be good together based on that, but obviously it didn’t happen. I mean, there were other reasons I was interested. I don’t go trolling lesbian bipolar support groups. There is a tendency for bipolar people to date each other though, which was really the point I wanted to make.

Once one of my friends told me she had never been in love, and I was kind of flummoxed. Like, never? God, I was in love when I was 14. And it went on from there. I’ve never had a problem falling for someone, it’s just actually making something work out that never happened. I don’t want to come across as a loveslut though, cause really I am SO particular about who I fall for.

I have been awake for SO LONG! OMG I woke up at 6am EST and now it’s almost midnight in Saskatchewan (which changes time zones so I can never keep up but it’s 2 hours behind).


An update on Mister

Mister is starting to get over his barking since we got The Collar. He’s doing really well so he doesn’t wear it much, pretty soon he won’t wear it at all. He definitely doesn’t bark for five minutes on end anymore. And not being so barky is improving his social skills, he used to just skuttle under the couch and now he’s actually walking up to visitors and being cute. The trainer said it would probably take a year to get him over his shyness, so that’s the number one thing I’m working on before he goes into more advanced out in the world service dog work.

For people who haven’t heard about Mister, he’s a long haired mini dachshund who I’m training to be a psychiatric service dog. I haven’t trained him to remind me to take medication, but that’s on the list. He’s trained to wake me up in the morning, and he’s really good at it. I have a hard time waking up because of medications and I can often be really crabby too, but being woken up by a happy silly little dog is a pretty decent way to start the day. He helps discern hallucinations in a totally unobtrusive manner, because he is very alert to sudden noises. And most of my hallucinations are random noises more than voices. He also calms me down really well, especially if I’m upset or scared by something. And if he knows something is really really wrong with me he’ll lick my face until I’m responding in a more even way. If I do have TLE like I’m pretty sure I do, then he’ll also be able to alert me to oncoming tonic clonic seizures (grand mals they used to be called). I usually have completely different seizures, but I’ve had a couple tonic clonic seizures in my life and I probably have some more coming.

He’s so smart, but he’s a brat and he knows how to get away with stuff. He’s come out of his shell since we got him, so I’m letting him have a little leeway to get silliness out of his system. Even when he is a fully trained service dog, he’s still going to spend a lot of his time being a regular dog anyway. He might end up being an emotional support animal who can aid in a few ways, but I really am sure he’s smart enough to get more training. The other night I found out he knows the command for roll over! If you’ve never seen a dachshund roll over on command you don’t know what you’re missing. He was raised to be a show dog, so he does take to training and there are a lot of things he knows that he doesn’t tell me.

Even if his training doesn’t advance any farther, he’s still made the biggest difference in my life since my diagnosis, even more than medication. I’m pretty lucky to have him, he’s a good boy.

Sex, Romance, and Disability

Once I was asking my friend Ariel if I was being foolish by including my psychiatric diagnosis in some online personals. She said the best thing, “It’s an asshole filter!” It’s true. As much as I feel my romantic possibilities have been severely limited by having a diagnosed psychiatric disability, I also feel like I don’t want to be involved with someone who thinks I’m an idiot or will chase them down the hall with a knife. I could go on and on about the lack of compassion many people feel towards all of us with disabilities or chronic health problems, but it won’t change the fact that they are assholes missing out on hotties. And it won’t change the fact that at some point in their lives, without exception, they will be in the exact same situation as me.

It was pretty hard to be in my mid twenties dealing with psychiatric issues on my own and being treated weirdly, and definitely not being viewed as a sexual person at all. I think most mid twenties folks run away from someone they think is going to be too “high maintenence.” I think older people do too. I’m kind of glad I didn’t have a girlfriend when I went nuts, just because it would have crushed me to get dumped when I got released from the hospital.

So I haven’t had a really nice girlfriend since I went crazy, I haven’t had any at all in fact. But I also haven’t been involved with anyone abusive, which happened to me before. In fact, yucky girls have pretty much left me alone. So maybe the asshole filter does work.

The issue of being crazy and being into BDSM is also fraught with it’s own conundrums. The motto “Safe, Sane, and Consensual” takes on a whole new meaning. Can someone who is certifiably insane still engage in the sexual practice they’re used to? I say yes. Being bipolar involves long stretches of sanity, in fact, I’m sane far more often than I am insane. I’m sure some players would disagree with my continued desire to engage in BDSM activities, but those are probably the same people who if they were vanilla would be scared of me chasing them around with a knife. In fact, having a psychiatric disability has lead me to be extremely sensitive and cautious with my emotional limits and my levels of trust. I probably have more insight into my own emotional safety in certain scenes, particularily humiliation/degradation scenes. I also have a really clear picture of my possible triggers, and have already come up with ways to get around and past it. For instance, I know I’m going to have a really really hard time with bondage. On the other hand I know if I have a long detailed conversation about what I need to get through my first post hospital bondage scenes, I’ll probably be able to have fun with it again.

Yeah, I guess having a disability of any kind means some (or a lot) of people don’t want to date us, but on the other hand the people who do are more likely to be people who are able to have serious long term relationships. And that’s really the only kind of person I want to be involved with.

Valproic Acid Toxicity, Oh Crumbs!

I called my nurse back finally about whatever she wanted to talk about. I was paranoid I was dying. I was kind of right about that. It turns out my Valproic Acid levels are terribly high and I’m heading into toxicity. Among the fun things that could happen to me are respiratory failure, coronary events, renal failure, coma, seizures, etc etc etc. Fuck me. Soooo, I’m going down to 1000mg a day instead of 1500mg. I thought this might happen because Lamictal ups Epival levels. And it also explains why I’ve felt kind of fucked recently. For one thing I’m starting to get totally nauseous and not being able to eat properly. I can’t sleep. I’m crabby as hell and I keep being mean to my mom. I feel tired and just generally run down.

Oh the joys of early onset of toxicity. Lucky for me in about three days of a lower dosage I should be fine. It’s 3:00. I’m at work. I’m confused and unable to concentrate. At least I know why now. Poop. I’m in one of those weird transitional states at the moment because I’m going through a long ongoing med change, Lamictal is going to be replacing my antidepressant, I’m down to 10mg of Celexa and I’m scared of stopping it because SSRI withdrawals are physically painful and fuck you up for a week. My last Cree class is tonight but I think I have to skip it because I really do feel like shit. Not even shit, like if shit took a shit. I need to sleep. I tried to call mom to come pick me up but she wasn’t around. Sadness! I have no bus fare either.

It’s weird being a chemically altered human being. According to Donna Haraway this makes me a cyborg. I kind of like that, Cyborg Thirza. Resistence is Futile. I will adapt.