Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired

Strategies and alternatives for coping with fibromyalgia, bipolar disorder and other chronic illnesses

Posts Tagged ‘Mental Health’

The New ChronicBabe Blog Carnival is LIVE!

Posted by wendyburnett on June 16, 2010

Jenni, over at ChronicBabe, has Blog Carnival #6 up! The topic this week is “passion” and there are plenty of different perspectives covered.

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Posted in Chronic Illness, Health, Invisible Illness | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

You CAN Feel Better: Self-care Tips and Tricks for Fibromyalgia and Bipolar Disorder

Posted by wendyburnett on June 1, 2010

Preparing the bath  /duc 297
Image by jaci XIII via Flickr


The new ChronicBabe Blog Carnival theme is favorite self-care tools and techniques, and will go live on Tuesday June 1. I love this topic . . . self-care is a very important part of managing a chronic illness, and we all deserve to take good care of ourselves. I use a lot of non-medication methods to manage the symptoms of my multiple chronic illnesses (the short list is fibromyalgia and bipolar disorder, but if you’re really interested in the entire list, check my “Who Am I” page,) and I love sharing them with anyone they might help. I use a lot of aromatherapy and herbal teas for symptom control; and stress reduction techniques to minimize flares, anxiety, and bipolar cycling; so let’s get started. Continue reading You CAN Feel Better: Self-care Tips and Tricks for Fibromyalgia and Bipolar Disorder

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Posted in Alternative Treatments, Bipolar Disorder, Chronic Illness, coping skills, Fibro, Fibromyalgia, Health, Invisible Illness, Pain, Stress | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

What does a “good” day look like to you?

Posted by wendyburnett on May 17, 2010

My definition

My personal idea of a good day is one where I don’t have to go to work, and I can spend some time just doing things that make me feel better. It does NOT mean that I’m not in pain (I haven’t had a day when the pain levels were below a 4 or 5 on the pain scale in at least 5 years.) It also doesn’t mean I’m not exhausted, or that I can actually remember all the things I need to take care of without lists, notes and reminders from the people around me.

What it does mean is that the pain levels are at a 6 or below, and that I can lay down with the hot pads when I need to, or take a nap. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Chronic Illness, Fibro, Fibromyalgia, Invisible Illness, Opinion, Pain, Personal care | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Yet Another Mentally Ill Person Killed by Police

Posted by wendyburnett on April 12, 2010

Another bipolar man has died due to the lack of training in dealing with the mentally ill, and the family has filed suit against the police department as a result, according to JusticeNewsFlash.com.

These kinds of deaths are so totally unnecessary, and it pisses me off to know that any one of us could be killed by police, just because they are totally clueless about how to deal with mentally ill people who are in crisis. This seems to be a bit more than just ignorance though, since Mr. Cardall’s family claims that after tasing him twice on his bare chest, police officers left him laying face down in the dirt, totally ignoring his wife’s requests that they check and make sure he didn’t need medical attention. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Bipolar Disorder, Mania, Opinion | Tagged: , | 6 Comments »

Bipolar Rage: Am I the Only One?

Posted by wendyburnett on March 15, 2010

I had one of those horrible days today (actually, it seems to be a bit of a pattern lately.) I’m normally pretty calm at home, but shortly after I walk into work I’m furious, and I stay that way until well after I leave.

I work in the deli at a grocery store, which probably isn’t the best kind of job for someone who’s bipolar. It’s extremely stressful when it’s busy, but I don’t have much choice if I want to eat. The real issue for me is that we’re expected to wait on customers; price, rotate, and stock product; mark down anything that’s approaching expiration; pull, scan, and throw away expired product; make deli trays for special orders; cut and package block cheeses; slice meat for the department that makes the custom subs; help customers find things, answer the phone, and keep everything clean. (Oh, you have to drop everything and update the temperature log every 4 hours, too. )

We NEED two people working during the busy times, one to slice and wait on customers, and one to work on everything else; but they never schedule more than one person. It is absolutely impossible for one person to keep up with everything they expect you to do. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Bipolar Disorder, Pain, Stress | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Tears Can Be a GOOD Thing . . .

Posted by wendyburnett on February 17, 2010


I haven’t been able to cry in months… It’s just all been too much, too hard. I’ve spent hours in bed on the heating pads (not mine, I can’t afford to buy one) staring at the wall or ceiling, feeling the tears in a knot in my throat; in my dry, aching eyes; unable to release them (yes, Ginny, I’m back to the “ten-second cry.”)

Today, thanks to a very dear friend, my tears are free again. Her new post, “Is This It?” is so accurate, so much my experience lately, that I have nothing to add. For me, lately, the answer to that question has been, “yes, this is it, this is all there is, all there ever will be;” and the only prayer I’ve had is, “Please, please just let it be over soon.” I don’t really care any more HOW that ending comes, whether it’s a job for one of us that actually provides enough income to LIVE instead of barely survive, or whether it’s the end of everything, as long as it ends. (Amazingly enough, I’m not suicidal, just physically and emotionally exhausted, and waiting for the day I CAN’T do it any more, the day that waking up and getting out of bed is just TOO hard and I let down all the people I love and who depend on me.)

Thank you Big Little Wolf, for reminding me, once again, that this ISN’T it, that the pain and exhaustion always ease eventually, and that there is always hope.

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Posted in Chronic Illness, Stress | Tagged: , , , | 12 Comments »

An Award?? Oh My!

Posted by wendyburnett on February 15, 2010

When I got home from work last night and got done with all the “necessities,” (you know the drill – dinner, laundry, dishes, etc.) I decided to check my blog surfer and see what my friends had to say this weekend. Imagine my surprise when I found my name listed in one of the posts! I knew that Jolene, over at Graceful Agony, was getting a “Sugar Doll Award” because I’d read Deanna’s post listing her picks, but I never expected that Jolene would choose me as one of the folks she passed it on to.

I’m honored and amazed that Jolene chose me. I haven’t known her long, but she is quickly becoming a dear friend. I’m totally impressed by her ability to stay positive (I haven’t posted in a week because I’m stuck in one of those totally negative spaces I get in sometimes, and I knew I couldn’t write without that negativity bleeding through,) and her ability to put into words what so many of us feel. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Bipolar Disorder, Chronic Illness, Depression, Fibromyalgia, Invisible Illness, Opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , | 11 Comments »

Blaming the “Victim” of Chronic Illness

Posted by wendyburnett on February 7, 2010

I was reading a post about blaming the victims of rape on Virginia Woods’ blog yesterday, and it made me think. “Victims” of chronic illnesses frequently get blamed for their illness as well, especially if they have something that isn’t very well understood by the medical community, like fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome. Victim blaming isn’t as common within the medical community when it comes to mental health issues like PTSD, bipolar disorder or schizophrenia, but out in the “real world;” family, friends, and acquaintances frequently blame the mentally ill for their symptoms. (Have you ever been told to “just stop thinking about it and it will go away” or “you didn’t have a problem until you started seeing a therapist?” How about, “you don’t have anything to be stressed (or depressed) about,” or “I’m tired (or in pain) too, and it doesn’t stop ME from doing what I need to do.” I have, and I expect that I will again.)

Healthy people seem to have the idea that those of us with chronic invisible illnesses can control or eliminate our symptoms with willpower. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Bipolar Disorder, Chronic Illness, Fibro, Fibromyalgia, Health, Invisible Illness, Opinion, Stress | Tagged: , , , , , , | 28 Comments »

Guilt and Chronic Illness

Posted by wendyburnett on January 16, 2010


“Guilt: the gift that keeps on giving.” – Erma Bombeck

I feel guilty all the time – guilty that I’m not able to do all the things I used to, guilty that I can’t work more, guilty that I had to quit the good job that provided the majority of our support, guilty that we lost the house and the car and most of our belongings as a result, guilty that my husband has to continue working at a job he hates so that we can barely scrape by . . . It makes no sense, because I didn’t decide to get sick, but I even feel guilty for HAVING a chronic illness in the first place.

My husband also feels a lot of guilt – he feels guilty that he “can’t take better care of me.” (His words, not mine.) That covers a lot of ground for him. He feels guilty when I come home from work in pain because he thinks that if he made more money I wouldn’t have to work. He feels guilty about losing his job when I got too sick to work, and not being able to find another one for so long, because he thinks that if he’d been working maybe we wouldn’t have lost so much. He never complains about all the things I can’t do, and he never mentions it when my inability to do something irritates him or makes him angry, but he feels guilty about having those feelings anyway. He doesn’t understand that “knowing” I was sick when we got together didn’t equal “understanding” what it would be like for him when I had a flare, or how it would affect him emotionally.

Guilt is a HUGE issue for anyone with a chronic illness, but we rarely realize that it is just as much an issue for those who love and support us. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Bipolar Disorder, Chronic Illness, Fibro, Fibromyalgia, Health, Invisible Illness | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »