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One of the things I have been trying to do over the last several months is gather together my best essays and put them together in a book.

I have done a good amount of research about self-publishing, and I think I have a good amount of that figured out. I have also started compiling these near 400 essays into themes that might form sections or chapters, I guess.

A strong impetus for this project is that no one seems to read my older essays. As a reader of this site you know that this isn’t set up like a lot of blogs, as a sort of diary. I mostly write about topics that, while often related to my current life, really are about larger topics than that. So my older essays are still relevant to be read. These things usually don’t time out. So while this blog format is useful in many ways, I think it also might be limiting my work.

Part of that issue is how blogs are navigated. As a reader you have to do some digging to find old work. I try to remedy this by tagging related work to each post and having the most popular essays always accessible through a quick link menu, but dozens of good essays are just difficult to find.

Bipolar ThoughtsBlogFamilyTherapy

A couple of months ago I was contacted by the genetics company 23 and Me to participate in a genetics study on bipolar.

I have been talking to my wife for almost two years about doing the 23 and Me thing anyway, just because I thought it was pretty cool and wanted to have a more defined outlook on my genetics. Being a science nerd, I just find it interesting. But also, two of my former psychiatrists have done genetics on me and both told me I have an “interesting combination”, at least as it pertains to medication.

But mostly, I just think it is fun and could be pretty eye-opening. For example, my grandmother on my father’s side has a family name of Burns. And she claims that it is an Irish name, despite having a Scottish spelling (the Irish version would be Berns). However, there is a very small Irish village where this particular surname in this spelling derives from. So, if I turn out to be Irish and not Scottish, then I will have a pretty fantastic glimpse into a very specific place in my lineage.

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Blog

So I wanted to make a short post that this blog was selected as one of the top 100 bipolar health blogs by Feedspot.com.

I was ranked #60, and several blogs I have contributed to as content aggregators were ranked above me.

That is a pretty cool thing. I don’t know how much weight this actually bears on anything, but it is nice to be noticed. I did not submit anything to this company, they simply found me and read some content and ranked me as they saw fit.

I have a couple blogs that I follow regularly make this list, as well as a couple people who have added me on Facebook and Twitter, and also follow my blog. So it is nice to see this space becoming more of the community.

One of my initial goals with this blog was to get ranked on a list like this. I didn’t know this particular list existed, but I wanted to get recognized. I was hoping to get that in the first year, instead of the third. But, that’s ok. I am not doing this for recognition, so it is just nice that it is coming in some form.

Here is the link for the article: http://blog.feedspot.com/bipolar_disorder_blogs/

Also, on my page there is an image of a gold medal on the side panel on the right. You can click that as a hyperlink to this list as well.

Thanks for your support!

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AnxietyBipolar ThoughtsBlogDepressionFamilyParenting

“Remember why you came and while you’re alive to experience the warmth before you go”

– Incubus “The Warmth”

I struggle on most days with my responsibilities at home. Parenthood is very difficult for me and something I feel like I’m getting worse at with each passing day. There are times when I get unreasonably irritable, times when my frustration doesn’t match the occasion.

For what it is worth, no one really helps me with it. There isn’t a single person in my life trying to help me be a better parent, or even help me ease the difficulties of it. Now, that isn’t to say people don’t help out, even a lot. We get a ton of support in terms of daily babysitting or even if we have something we want or need to do. Our children are always welcome and in good hands and we have a lot of options. But what I am talking about is not that type of help. I don’t mean take the kids off my hands for some time help. I mean emotional support. I mean clearing my head kind of support. I mean relieving stress and learning to avoid it kind of support.

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BlogInspirationMusic and Movies

I recently read the book “Contact” by Carl Sagan. You may remember the brilliant but oft criticized Zemeckis movie with Jodie Foster and McConaughey.

I’m not going to get into a breakdown of either work, but if you want to watch a movie (or read a book) that attempts to deal with and reconcile science, religion and faith and what it means to be human as well as 2001, or Close Encounters, for sure check out “Contact”.

Anyway, in the book, aliens make contact with Earth through a radio signal sent from Vega. It is discovered and decoded and how it is known to be generated by intelligent life, as opposed to random noise, is that they are transmitting prime numbers.

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AnxietyBipolar ThoughtsBlogInspirationTherapy

Week #3 of thankfulness blogs

This week, the purity of sound

A few summers ago I was camping with my family and one entire day was rained out. I had an infant that wasn’t entirely happy, and I was just beginning the recovery process after ECT.

Anxiety hit me like a ton of bricks just after lunch and I went to my tent to lie down and get away. And there is where I discovered something that has been an effective part of treating my anxiety ever since, the sound of a hard rain on that nylon/ polyester blended surface.

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BlogFamilyFriends and Relationships

“The cruelest lies are often told in silence” – Robert Louis Stevenson

 

I’m still angry. I still cannot really believe that what happened actually happened and how quickly it was swept under the rug. Worse yet, how it was made to be my problem, like I had been the cause of it.

There hasn’t been so much as a word spoken about it, by either of us, in months and yet I still get visibly upset when I think about it, like this morning.

I was then, and still am now; ready to completely burn the bridge. What I do gain from the relationship is easily trounced by how much side-stepping I have to do to avoid pitfalls.

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BlogInspirationMusic and Movies

Week Two of the thankfulness blogs:

Last week was a pretty deep and serious thing, a way my daughter delights my heart. This week is something much simpler, but something that has been huge for me lately.

A couple months ago I traded a guy some guitar equipment I no longer used for some that he no longer used. I ended up with a new (to me) guitar amplifier. It happened to be an amp I had been wanting for a decade. And I couldn’t feel more pleasure playing through it.

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BlogFamilyInspiration

I am starting a new series of essays on this blog. I’m going to be posting them on Saturday mornings, as this one was, hoping to inject some good vibes into your weekends. However, I might move them into my normal weekly slots. Stay tuned.

But here is the plan: I’m going to write one piece a week about things I am thankful for, or at least things that keep me positive. I don’t plan on doing the big obvious things, though. Anyone who knows me or has read enough of this blog understands that I am a lucky person, born into a situation that most people envy, and given enough talent and ability for it to be a real shame if I don’t do something with my life.

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