Finding Your Way Through Grief

Recently I looked grief in the eyes and begged her to leave me be, she didn’t. Grief stayed with me, stayed with me as if I were wearing a second layer of skin. Grief was there when I went to the grocery store with messy hair and no bra, of course that’s when I ran into everyone I knew.

Grief was there when I went to work and smiled and laughed along to jokes I didn’t find funny.

Grief was there when I went to bed at night, hanging over me in suffocating silence.

My grandmother passed away last month, exactly 24 days ago, and grief is still here. I have asked her with eyes full of tears, “will you ever leave?”, but I never seem to get an answer.

The only thing I have been able to do is to try to find a way through.

I have found it best to not pretend, at least not to myself. Acknowledge that I’m grieving and honour the woman that passed. It can be so easy to sink into this idea after someone dies that life is meaningless, and for a moment it might feel like it. It’s okay to feel the full range of emotions that come from grief. When it feels like a weighted blanket that you can’t seem to shake off, feel it, accept it, and find your way through.

Psychologists say there are five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.

It should feel like a roadmap. “Oh, I’m at anger… soon I’ll be bargaining,” but it’s not a roadmap, it’s just a medical trail there to diagnose which stage your currently living in. When you are living in each stage it consumes you. You begin to resent the roadmap and you try to tell yourself that the psychologists and therapists, and whoever else thinks they understand grief, don’t actually know a damn thing.

Must still be in the anger stage.

Anyway, after a while you begin to feel okay. It’s not good, it’s not awful, it’s just okay, and that’s the beginning of making it through.

You remember that everyone in this life will experience grief and loss, and that perhaps the best thing to do is to live your life in the best possible way you can. Make your friendships matter, make connections, keep your word, live true to you.

Maybe life is just about how well you treat others, and how much you can enjoy the journey while you’re still here.

So while you’re making it through, remember to look up at the stars there is where you’ll find all the answers you need.

 

Much love,

Carlee.

 

Remember you are loved, you are worthy, and you are blessed… even when it doesn’t feel like it.

When Social Anxiety Meets Online Business

First of all, I’d like to say if you are thinking of starting an online business, congratulations! It is a very courageous endeavour with many upsides once you get into the swing of things.

It is everyones dream (at least the people I know) to work from home, filling their days with things they would like to do. Running an online business is kind of like that, except a lot of your day is filled with little working tasks, like writing a blog post – making content – taking pictures – client calls etc.

Most of my time is actually spent replying to social media messages and emails. Networking is THE biggest part of an online business.

I’ll stick to that despite what anyone else says.

So, how do you run a business when you have social anxiety?

Luckily the online world is pretty cool about that sort of thing. When you interact online through the computer, typing on profiles, it’s a lot easier because you have some time to think about the responses that you are giving. You can take a moment and generally, for myself, feel little to no anxiety.

When you have to network outside of “the profile”, by FaceTiming or Skype, it get’s a bit harder but it is still doable. When I first started using FaceTime to interview people I was nervous. I was so nervous I actually sabotaged a few meetings and hated myself for it afterward.

Now, I see that as a serious learning opportunity. Each time I sabotaged because of social anxiety I felt regret. I had this huge hanging question “what if?”. What if I had just completed the interview, what if I had been courageous enough to meet someone new today.

After you do it so many times that feeling kind of simmers down. It is always there in the beginning, but a bit smaller and it has a weaker hold on you than before.

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My only advice would be to ask yourself: where is this feeling coming from? Is it because I’m worried that no-one will like me? Do I feel inadequate? Will hiding away help my business?

Slowly step out of your comfort zone. Try to meet one new person a week, you will generally find the world to be a pleasant place and the people you meet will do most of the talking anyway. All you have to do is ask a few questions now and then.

Take it from me, or Mark Metry host of Humans 2.0 Podcast, social anxiety can be conquered and a full-time online business can be developed.

You have it in you, I believe in you.

If you ever want to chat simply drop me a comment or send me a message on one of my social media channels, I’ll be happy to chat.

 

— Carlee xx.

 

You are Loved. You are Worthy. You are Blessed.

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They F*cked me UP [getting help is a long process]

Back with another casual life update.  About four years ago I did a stint in the local mental hospital and that’s where I was diagnosed with autism and bipolar. During that time the doctor prescribed me the lowest possible dose of ceroquil and it f*cked me up.

After that we determined that I was sensitive to medication and I was put on a low dose of Abilify.

Now, the right thing to do would have been to continue taking the Abilify for the last four years and probably have a normal existence.

But when has life ever been normal?

Of course I stopped taking the medication and had a a TON of wild adventures, which looking back I mostly don’t regret.

Only my last depression got so bad I wanted to get back on the meds, so here we are.

I took a full pill of Abilify (was previously only taking half a pill) and it too f*cked me up.

I felt like passing out, shitting myself, throwing up… in fact I did throw up, I actually projectile vomited all over my bathroom in this really gross purple colour because I thought it was a good idea to drink a fruit smoothie before bed.

The point of this little blog post is to say:

  1. I’m still alive.
  2. I’m going to take 1/2 a pill and live a semi-normal existence.
  3. It’s okay if it doesn’t work the first time, getting help is a long process.

 

Tho the road may be shitty – the destination will be beautiful. — probably Shakespear or someone important like that.

 

Remember you are loved, you are worthy and you are blessed.

Carlee xx

 

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Makeup is NOT self-care?

I used to be the first person to say this. You can probably find it somewhere if you scroll long enough on my social media. REAL self-care I used to say was looking at yourself, your inner self and doing the emotional work. I still agree with this, part of self-care is definitely working through your own road-blocks and healing from any past traumas that have accumulated. It is journaling and going to counselling if needed.

It’s watching motivational talks from Les Brown and amping yourself up for just a normal day.

It’s all of these things, and lately I have found, from my own personal truth… it can be makeup also.

As many of you know I have reduced my hours at work, only working 3 shifts a week right now while I meet with a mental health worker and try to feel “normal” again. I’m currently in a state of depression. If you don’t know what depression is like it’s kind of this invisible weight that stays on you… 24/7 and you can’t shake it off. You just feel down or “heavy” and you don’t really need a reason to be that way.

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Makeup, for me has always been fun. I may not wear it out all the time but when I do I feel awesome, and when I’m just at home creating new looks it makes me happy. I always thought there was a stigma around makeup, if you like it then you’re dumb? Anyway, lately I’ve been trying to not care about what anyone else thinks, it’s important not too.

Especially in this depression, I’ve just been doing things that make me happy. Which seem to be writing this blog, taking long walks, makeup and tarot.

I wasn’t happy with my life, the direction it was going, how I was feeling etc. In some weird way, creating makeup looks and tarot videos is helping me to feel better and take some control over my life’s direction.

So, now if you ask me: is makeup self-care? I’m going to have to say yes. Undoubtedly yes, because it is making me feel happy in a time I would not otherwise.

 

Love to you all,

Carlee.

My youtube Channel: Makeup and Tarot with Carlee

—- give me a follow 🙂 I’ll be doing more looks, readings and giveaways.

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For the love of god stop googling your symptoms: A Life Update.

For anyone following along here’s the update.  sept. 7th 2019.

I’m working nights for the last week next week, which is both exciting and relieving because it will allow me to sleep properly for the first time in about 6 months. It should also help to calm some of the symptoms I have been experiencing.

After a quick stop off at the local coffee shop that I’m now addicted to (both joking but mostly, not joking at all… please send help) I ran to the walk-in clinic to get a note for work.

I felt embarrassed because just the week prior I had been at that same walk-in, seeing the exact same doctor, complaining of stomach pain. The day after that visit I checked myself into the emergency room because I was convinced I had appendicitis, ovarian cancer or gall stones. NONE of which were accurate. It turns out I was just constipated and should not have been googling “stomach pain” in the first place.

STOP GOOGLING YOUR SYMPTOMS — is now the screensaver to my phone.

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“Symptoms” should be taken lightly though because I may have a slight touch of hypochondria… or is that EXACTLY what a hypochondriac would think?!

As the doctor wrote the note he said he wouldn’t tell my work I was “fucked up”, instead he would only write “due to illness”.

We both laughed.

But, I also knew that I was going to share everything on this blog anyway so it didn’t really matter what my work knew at this point… if anyone were to read this, they would find out anything/everything they ever wanted to know.

Because I have a problem with sharing too much information, pretty much all of the time.

He then handed me a prescription for the medication I probably should have been taking for the last four years. Perhaps it would have saved a lot of the troubles I have found myself in… but then I wouldn’t have any of the stories I’ll soon be writing about.

It’s a gamble either way.

The next morning I gave the note to my work and the manager that I gave the note too didn’t seem that happy about it. I can only imagine it is because she herself is stressed out and my going down to part-time might seem like more of a burden on everyone else.

My counsellor said “it’s not your problem” and those four words sound so GANGSTER to me.

I’ve been saying it in my head over just about everything for the past few days.

There you have it.

I can’t wait to start healing, writing, and learning how to best manage bipolar and autism.

This will be a grand adventure… hopefully you’ll join me.

 

Much love,

Carlee.

 

p.s you are loved. you are worthy. you are blessed.

 

THIS is Bipolar Disorder.

It’s probably best to start at the beginning, or the middle maybe, better to keep your interest.

I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at 16 and it wasn’t until the age of 23 while staying in the mental hospital that I was diagnosed with autism as well. Even with the diagnosis’ I just kept working. I figured as long as I could just work and hold down a job than every other part of my life would seem normal.

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Only, it didn’t work out that way. I have had in my lifetime over 50 jobs (many of them entry-level) and still, with my mania lost control of my life on numerous occasions.

As I write this now I have a job, entry level at a coffee shop, that I am trying my hardest to hold onto for dear life, despite the overwhelming low of depression I’m currently in.

Just a few months ago, five to be exact, I had this awesome idea come to me… again as most ideas do, they sometimes come back around until you act on them in a manic state. I wanted to start a business, a big beautiful wonderful business. It was going to help SO many people here in the community. Numerous reasons as to why it didn’t work. There were large agencies that wanted to use services but not pay for them, competitors that turned nasty, but above all the number 1 reason it didn’t work….

I was MANIC.

I was running on borrowed energy. I thought I could work 40 hours a week AND run a business during the day, with only 2-3 hours sleep in between. It felt like sleeping was a waste of time because I had so much to do, my mind was always racing.

And,

I did help some people. I had people coming to me that thanked me for what I was doing and the impact I was having, which I’m grateful for because maybe that makes it kind of worth it.

But mostly I started a business RAPIDLY and then had a bunch of people welcomed into my own little bipolar world… and for that I’m sorry.

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It is a wild freakin’ ride over here, you’ve really got to know what you’re getting yourself into, and make sure you wear your seatbelt if you’re going to hang out with me.

There will always be ideas… so many ideas. Maybe, that’s the business I should start. Come sit down with me every 3 months or so and I’ll shower you with unique ideas that can be put to good use by someone more stable and mentally rounded.

Of course, there is the other side of the illness, all engulfing lows that seem to swallow you up and leave you lying for days on the couch wondering why you have to live here… what’s the purpose of life? Is there any meaning to anything we do or are we all just wandering around in a pointless existence? It does seem mellow dramatic now that I’m typing about it, but when you’re in it… you are in it.

I’m the girl that waits weeks to do her laundry, has a to-do list that just seems to get longer and longer, only buys condiments at the grocery store,… has journal full of ideas that are meant for someone else.

THIS is bipolar disorder.

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I woke up to drink coffee… clearly

It’s not like they portray on the movies, it’s not any type of “beautiful mind” bullshit. It is random businesses and school drop outs, it’s figuring out which way to walk to work because you want to avoid certain intersections because the people waiting for you to cross in their cars make you anxious.

This was the middle of the story. Maybe one day I’ll write more about the addiction, the mental hospital, the self-care routine, the relationships won and lost… but for now because the business thing is really fresh and I’m trying my hardest to find a way to apologize to everyone who became involved in the whole ordeal… I thought I’d tell you honestly what bipolar looked like in my world.

Here’s to everyone else out there trying to make it. Dealing with the mania, the depression and still holding onto what little dignity they can scrape up off the floor – along with their hearts, of course.

Remember: you are loved, you are worthy, you are blessed.

Carlee. xx

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