It's me, your long lost Blogger Pal and Beauty Queen. You may have noticed that I've been pretty silent for the last 5 months. I feel like I owe you an explanation for my sudden departure.
This post is gonna get heavy real quick.
I've been struggling with some mental health issues for a while now. I was frantically treading to keep my head above water for the last few years, if I'm completely honest.
Then I broke that damn ankle.
That accident caused so many ripples that engulfed so many aspects of my life.
I had to give up my career as a stylist. I LOVE doing hair and connecting with my clients. I embarked on a new career as a customer service rep working remotely. While I loved the job (and was damn good at it) the isolation and (self imposed pressure and standards) really started to compound.
I suffered vicious slander and character attacks from other members of the Plus Community. Knowing that people dislike you so much is very difficult to process.
While juggling all of these things and trying to maintain friendships and relationships my old man cat got sick. Thousands of dollars in vet bills sick. Then all the cats got fleas (more $$). Then tragically my baby Winston had a heart attack and died in my arms. I administered CPR but it wasn't enough. The loss of him broke something inside me and I went to bed for a month.
He truly was my best friend. I miss him every day.
Luckily I live in Canada and my Family Doctor was able to refer me to a mental health facility so that I could get the help I sorely needed. While I had to wait 6 weeks for my admission into the program I was able to work with a talented team of a Psychiatrist, Psychiatric Nurse and a Social Worker... FOR FREE! God bless socialist health care.
While working with them I received a diagnosis that's been bandied about for years; I'm bipolar.
I was initially horrified by this. I'm not THAT crazy. Once I had time to digest the title and read all the information I was provided I became more comfortable with it. There's no such thing as "THAT crazy". We're all just individuals who are trying to get through life with the extra challenges that we've been handed. Looking back at my life history I can see a lot of clues that my psychiatric team picked up on to make their diagnosis.
We quickly changed gears on my medications and started me on a new regime. I noticed a difference almost right away. I stopped crying all the time and the weight on my shoulders lightened. I even managed to have a cute night out with some gal pals for my bday.
The holidays were difficult because I was off work so making no money and shit's expensive. The hubs and I kept it low-key.
When the new year came I was discharged from my program and it was time for me to put the skills I learned into action. My new doctor has been monitoring my meds and my progress and I'm working with a counselor. I unfortunately had to give up my job as they weren't able to accommodate my medical needs.
That left me in a scramble. I need to work obviously and my EI had run out. Luckily I am a Jane of all Trades. I can turn my hand at pretty much anything. So I joined the team at The Make Den teaching sewing lessons. It feeds my soul to teach and share my love of something. I like to think I am good at it.
We've also healed our hearts and opened our home to a new fur baby. Pipsqueak was rescued just after our Winston died. Watching his recovery while in foster care, healed my heart just a little bit each time I saw his silly, little face. He has so much of Winston in him is make me a little maudlin but his kitten energy and affection just helps to ease our grief. Winston will always be our baby. Pipsqueak would have loved his older brother.
That's been life for the last 5 months. It wasn't pretty but I came out the other side: stronger, wiser and ready to make a new life for myself and my family.