BPD Blog Borderline Personality Disorder

Toby

Posted October 8, 2020 By kmarrs

I work evenings now. I’m usually gone when Sammy goes to bed. Which wouldn’t be a problem, if Sammy didn’t have crippling anxiety.

Unfortunately, Sammy does have crippling anxiety, with a side of depression. The worst of it is at bedtime.

One night I was lamenting that I would give anything for Sammy to have a dog that could go to bed with her every night. A furry friend that Sammy could find comfort in when I’m not there. I’d train the dog that Sammy was his human and he could help her not be scared.

The catch is, our rent goes up a couple of hundred dollars and we’d need to pay a hefty security deposit if we got a dog. And while we could mostly afford the basics of dog ownership, we can not afford extra rent.

Then my best friend suggested an ESA dog and it’s like suddenly the skies had cleared. ESA dogs and their disabled humans are a protected class and legally our landlord can not charge us extra rent or a security deposit for one. And Sammy is in for real, legitimate need.

I spoke to Sammy’s therapist, and she is in huge support of the idea. She’s looking into what she needs to do on her end, then she’s going to write a letter that basically prescribes Sammy with an ESA. We’ll take that letter and a print out of the law to our landlord and have them add that to our file.

Then we’re going to go to the shelter and find a pitbull or pitbull mix that responds to Sammy as the sad puppy she is. Pitbulls make excellent ESA dogs.

Together we’ll train him with the standard set of obedience commands like sit and stay. I’ll also train him to sleep in Sammy’s room at night. Since he won’t be going to the grocery store or other errands, the basic discipline commands are all he really needs. I’ll also train him on how to be walked by the 9yo, who isn’t very strong. We’ll walk her together right now, but as she gets older I want her to be able to take her dog around the neighborhood by herself, without the dog pulling on the leash.

I told Sammy about the decision a few days after I made it. She’s in research mode very concerned with learning how to train, the best food options, the best dog beds and toys, and “we’re going to get the dog chipped, right mom?”

It took her all of 24 hours to name the dog we don’t have and that we’ve never met. I campaigned for Ativan since the dog would be helping her with Anxiety. She considered it but eventually settled on Toby. Her only concern was the Toby was a boy’s name and the dog might be a girl. I pointed out dogs don’t have a gender and that blew her mind but settled the problem.

We’ll welcome Toby into our life within the next 6 months.

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Zoo Trip! Zoo Trip!

Posted September 24, 2020 By kmarrs

I took Sammy to the zoo this past weekend as a belated birthday trip. We have a membership so it’s super easy to just pack up and go to the zoo a dozen times a year. Things slowed down when COVID hit, but we’re getting back into the swing of it.

This trip was a little different than our normal trip though. You see, our zoo as an adventure cove with all sorts of fair rides and such. Also scattered through the park are additional rides like pony rides and a train through North America. Our long time favorite is the 1914 carousel that I always find the money for, but usually, we can’t afford the other rides so I have to tell her no. This time, however, I asked my mom to sponsor a couple of ride bracelets that basically give us limitless access to all of them and she agreed. They are actually a pretty great bargain.

The first ride we went on when we got there was this water roller coaster. It had two drops that weren’t extremely high, but there was a splash involved with each. About a minute, or less, after getting seated and starting our way through it, Sammy decided that actually she is afraid of heights and didn’t really want to get wet, but it was way too late for that. Luckily I was able to hold her tight and she didn’t die of freight but she did have some regrets by the end.

The next ride we almost went on is that boat that swings back and forward. We made it to the front of the line before Sammy decided that maybe it also went to high and actually she’d like to go ahead and skip it. I didn’t give her any hassle. Limits and boundaries are healthy and to be respected.

She did, however, enjoy a nice pony ride. And we rode the train together. Then we made our way to the camel rides and we got to ride one together. She was a little nervous through that because camels are taller than she expected, but she eased up and decided it was fun after all by about halfway through. Then we made our way to the carousel and rode that a couple of times before it was time to leave because the zoo was closing.

We did, actually, see a handful of animals too. She loves the big cats so I made sure she saw the lions and the cheetahs. We didn’t manage to see the tigers, but that’s ok. There is always the next trip. We also saw the seals which is a new exhibit that I love with all my heart. My friend works for a seal rescue in Ireland so I’m learning to appreciate them more than ever.

We’re going back on Halloween. This time we’ll actually focus on seeing the animals. (Though there is always carousel money.) The animals will have pumpkin enrichment and it’s a great final fall trip before it gets really cold. Not that the cold has ever stopped us. But a lot of animals den over winter so the winter trips are less productive.

I really enjoy having unlimited access to the zoo. I’m glad I got the kids a membership from Santa this last Christmas. That will be the regular gift from him from now on. It’s something we can all enjoy and it’s right about the Santa price point.

Here are some photos of Sammy I took that day that I enjoy.

Here is the water roller coaster. Sammy has decided she’ll try it again when she’s 25.

This is the swinging boat ride she almost went on. It looked fun.

There were a few other rides I would have loved for her to try. But she just wasn’t ready and I’m not mean enough to push her. She did the roller coaster so I’m super proud of her, even if she does have regrets.

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Zazzle Store

Posted September 17, 2020 By kmarrs

Things are going well but there isn’t anything exciting to report. My days are spent taking care of my client and family, and resting so I my body can focus on making blood. I’m reading a lot. I’m working 1-2 overnights a week and M, my client, is usually asleep those hours (11pm to 7am) so I read my book and scroll Tumblr. That’s pretty much the bulk of life right now.

Going in a different direction, a couple of my friends made reference to needing a shirt, and it was a simple design so I’m like, “Hey! I can make that!” and introduced them to my Zazzle and made the shirt in question for them.

Anyway, I was looking through some of my old products, and I’m realizing I need to spend a couple of hours sorting things between categories and cleaning shit up. I should do that soon. I might actually do that as soon as I’m done writing this (Wednesday night). However. I’m tired. However however, I have a few more hours before I can reasonably go to bed since I need to stay in 2nd/3rd shift mode.

These are good hours for me, over all. But sometimes I’m tired and want to go to bed early. The catch is, if I do that I wake up early, then I have an even harder time being up as late as I need to be on days I actually work.

I miss the days of being able to sleep 14 hours straight. Though I’m grateful I no longer need to sleep 12-14 hours straight.

Hmm. This post is going all over the place. I guess ADHD sort of took over.

Whatever.

Go visit my store. I could use the cash.

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Working with BPD and things, an Update Part 2

Posted September 10, 2020 By kmarrs

This new job is really working out for me. I don’t just mean the dynamics of my relationship with my client. I mean it works in all the ways my mental health usually doesn’t let things work.

It’s slow-paced so I don’t have to thrive under pressure. I don’t have sales or referral goals. I’m allowed to be somewhat nocturnal, which is an ADHD trait.

This is a job that lets me be useful to society and a community in a way that isn’t detrimental to my mental health. I could even argue that it agrees with my physical heath, considering I was able to do the job well even with no blood the past few weeks.

All in all, I don’t feel particularly disabled trying to do this job. It’s a great feeling. I really think this is something I can do long term.

I can’t actually post photos of the people I give care to. That’s a huge privacy violation. So please accept this stock photo in its place.

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Phoning it in

Posted September 3, 2020 By kmarrs

I was planning to write a follow up post on my new job, but I just don’t have the spoons this week. I have no blood, once again, and I’m very tired. I did get a treatment this week and I have another one next week for the no blood thing. So it’s being handled. But tired.

Have a flower the birds grew and Robin photographed

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Working with BPD and things, an Update Part 1

Posted August 27, 2020 By kmarrs

So I am officially working now. I’m a senior caregiver with a international company, though they are franchised out.

I started a week ago and spent a few evenings (I work 3pm to 11pm – mostly) with a really nice lady who had just had emergency surgery. By the time I got my turn with her, she was mostly recovered. She was well on her feet in a way that you wouldn’t think a 91-year-old would be. She was for the most part able-bodied, and her mind is as sharp as a tack. I spent most of my time with her reading beside her, refilling her water as needed. It was a really relaxing way to get my feet wet.

By Monday of this week she was well enough that she didn’t need us any more, and good for her. She was a delight to work with, but I’m glad she’s feeling better.

My new case is a little more challenging. She is 90-years-old and about 80% able bodied, though she is slow getting on her feet and uses a chair lift for stairs. But she gets around. The catch is she has dementia. So she’ll present a unique challenge.

I’ll just have to be patient and persistent. I spent a few hours with her Tuesday while she was in someone else’s care, to get to know the case, her needs, and my way around the house. I will officially take over the 3-11pm shift on Thursday. I’ll be with her 5 days a week.

This is subject to change at any time, but this seems to be where I’m stationed.

I’m feeling pretty relaxed about the challenge ahead. I’ve been around dementia patients before. I know to just go with the flow and not add to the confusion in her head. I know how to place ideas in her head that she’ll develop and claim as her own as the day progresses that will allow me to make sure she eats, bathes, etc.

In closing, I present one of the sunflowers the local birds planted in among my lilies. Some people would be bothered by this and pull it all. However, I myself am an agent of chaos, so I support the birbs in their gardening efforts.

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