It’s June already??!!

Hello my friends, it has been too long. So much has been happening of late, some good, some bad, some neutral. I’ve moved. I’m still swimming in a sea of boxes and containers, but the new place is coming along. So much less stress now to know I have cheaper rent and housemates who can help me when my chronic illnesses flare up.  There’s so much to update you on, but honestly my mind is swimming. I’m hypomanic due to all the chaos, so I’m doing the best I can to corral it. Here’s a few things swirling around my head to tell you about, I’m sure I’ll post in greater detail soon:

  • I went on 2 dates with a guy who was a friend of a friend. Date #1 was great! He got me flowers, treated, held doors open. Date #2…not so much. And the text messages sent the following day equally not cool (hint: I don’t care about your “very high libido”. That’s a huge turn off)
  • My fibromyalgia is pretty bad with all the crazy weather fronts that have come through. But I have started taking some herbs to complement my current therapies for the fibro, my bipolar and my migraines. I’m happy to say the migraines have really gone down in frequency. Is it the herbs? The new living situation? Not sure, but we’ll stick with it for now.
  • I’ve been pretty successful in keeping up with meditating each night and doing yoga several times a week. Sleep for the last few days hasn’t been so great, mostly due to the fibromyalgia pain and the move. But I’m confident I can get my sleep habits back to a healthy level again soon.
  • http://themanifeststation.net/2015/06/01/the-struggle-is-real-body-love/ THIS POST, YOU GUYS. Jennifer at TheManifeststation.net is speaking some real truths. I felt this post hit me somewhere deep, recalling how upset I was when I stepped on the scale to see how much weight I’ve gained with my medication change (hint: it’s not as much as my mind wants to make it out to be). I applaud her bravery for posting the video, too. I mean, I blog anonymously so I am in awe, for sure. I want to write about my journey with this a little bit more in the future, once I can really figure out what “the feels” I’m having are.
  • I meditated with a guided meditation on forgiveness the week before last. During the meditation, I pictured the one person I need to forgive the most (besides myself, of course): my ex-fiancee. It was incredibly moving and emotional, and I actually cried. Afterwards, I felt so free. There is still one person I need to envision with this forgiveness meditation in the future, although I am thinking they are far less guilty than I believe them to be. Since I did the meditation, I have not dreamt of my ex and really haven’t thought much about him at all. Truly freeing.
  • Just read “The Girl on The Train”. Totes awesome.
  • “Came out” as bipolar to another coworker, which led to a great conversation on therapy, recovering from abusive relationships and just that general happy buzz you get when you find another member of “your tribe”.
  • And for the most surprising thing I want to mention: I had a couple of truly awesome, heartwarming experiences in the emergency room last week. Thinking of them almost makes me forget how bad today was. One of them was so special, and one of the people I shared it with means so much to me (to the point I’m pretty sure I am in love with him) that I’m now re-thinking a decision I made so many years ago- the decision to not have children.  Obviously, something I need to really go into more detail on after some more thought.

I hope you are all doing well. If you are in a dark spot, please know that I am thinking of you, praying for you, sending love your way.

Coming Out of the Bipolar Closet

My immediate family is aware of my bipolar diagnosis, I mean, how could they not know? They’ve lived with me and all my explosive outbursts, my teary depression, my ambitious hypomania. But my entire family is not aware. It’s not that I fear rejection, mostly it stems from not really seeing them as much, so I don’t feel as close to them as I’d like. But on Saturday, I went ahead and started a conversation with my beautiful and talented cousin, who lives in another state. She had been writing a blog and stopped because she wasn’t really getting the response she hoped for. I told her she should keep going, to push a little more and then came clean about writing this blog, and about having bipolar, as well.

She handled it as amazingly as I knew she would. She is much younger than me, but she carries herself with such grace and integrity, you would think she was much older. We had a good conversation about bipolar, about writing and about living life the way you want to, without worrying what other people think. I was flattered when she told me she thought I was strong and brave for battling bipolar. But later on, after we had both said our goodbyes, I wondered if I really was brave. I often feel like a cop out for writing anonymously, when there are so many other amazing bipolar writers who are open about their identity. I don’t know that I’ll be revealing my “real” identity anytime soon, but it sure felt good to have that conversation with my cousin. It’s made me think about “coming out” to my entire family, which I think may happen sooner than I ever thought it would.

Revealing my bipolar disorder to my cousin was incredibly freeing and it’s so great that conversations about mental health don’t have to be shameful or forced. I feel reignited as far as advocacy goes, as well.

Readers, have you had good or bad experiences when revealing your diagnosis? Please share your story in the comments!

Coffee, the Nectar of Life

It’s no big secret that I am a coffee lover. Since I’m allergic to beer (so, so sad but true) and wine triggers my migraines, my refreshment of choice is coffee. There’s really no wrong time for coffee as far as I’m concerned. I’m always interested in finding new coffee brands to try and different brew methods. A few months ago, I reorganized my cupboard because the bags and containers of coffee were taking over. As I was organizing, I thought that it would be a fun project to see just how many different coffees I can try. As far as brands go, I’m not sure how many I have tried at present, but my estimate is 27. As far as brewing, I have four different methods in my home: Keurig, a Hario drip, an Aeropress and an old school percolator. I’d like to try making a kind of Turkish coffee in an ibrik next.

Since trying new coffee brands is my new hobby, I’m going to share my findings with you my dear readers. I think it will be a fun thing to write about, to break up the seriousness of my other posts. In short I have moved on from trying out bath/body products and moved to drinking as many different kinds of coffee I feasibly can. But I would love to hear what your favorite brands and brew methods are! Send me an email at latebloomlisa@gmail.com or just type in a comment below!  

Perky Linky Post!!

I’m a little hopped up on caffeine and sunshine and back with a gathering of posts and sites for you to check out!

I shared with you my iced coffee recipe. Alicia over at Jaybirdblog.com has another less lazy more culinary recipe to try. I advise you get your coffee from Georgia Bean Roasters, a veteran owned company. I love independent coffee roasters and also supporting our vets!

Speaking of vets (and being the daughter of one) I am appalled by the tumult happening with the VA.  In case you missed it, there’s been resignations and shake ups. It’s disgraceful to not take care of our veterans’ physical and mental health. It breaks my heart to see homeless, addicted and otherwise impaired veterans come into the emergency room I work in.

I know I’ll be writing a separate post on this topic, but the concept of emotional abuse, gaslighting and calling women crazy is an extremely sensitive subject. As a highly functioning bipolar woman, I find this practice beyond demeaning, and I’m sad to say I’ve received quite a few “low blows” regarding my mental health.

Miscellaneous: I wish I had room for this potting bench

Hope you like the links and have a great weekend!

 

 

 

Long Weekend Link Up!!

Here’s a quick post to catch you up on what’s been going on and what is in store for this weekend as well as interesting tidbits from around the web.

I cannot wait to go buy my veggie plants and herbs for this summer! I only have a balcony to grow on, so I’m maximizing my space with this brilliant idea from Sunset magazine. This is tops on my to do list, you know, right after I’m done working.

My coffee addiction has been brought to a new level with the addition of cold brewed coffee, here’s my cold brew recipe from earlier in the week. This is powering me through some overtime at the hospital and just delicious!

Living in the Keystone state, I thought this was a well written interesting story regarding the impact of tourism on the Amish community.

I’ve been living with migraines for over 25 years and it’s a condition a lot of people either don’t take seriously, don’t understand or just flat out don’t believe. This article lists horror stories experienced by migraine sufferers in the workplace, and sadly, some sound really familiar.

So much yes in this awesome post from the awesome Sarah at Yesandyes.org. So much of the “self love” edicts spewed on Twitter don’t work for me, mostly because of my bipolar.  It’s great to see an agreeing opinion as far as this is concerned.

When you date a police officer, things like this ring suddenly seem a million times cooler. I want one!

My friend Jenna has re-launched and redesigned  her blog! Please take the time to check it out! Her bravery and honesty are amazing and she’s putting a new face on bipolar college students for sure!

Hope everyone has a great holiday weekend, but definitely take time to remember what it’s all about!

 

 

 

 

DIY Cold Brew Coffee Drink Recipe!!

I was experimenting in the kitchen with my Trader Joe’s Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate and found this super simple recipe to be delicious, so I’m sharing it with you!

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all you need is the Trader Joe’s Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate, some soy milk and splenda. I used a 1:2 ratio as the concentrate is pretty intense. I combined 110 ml of the coffee concentrate and 220 ml of soy milk. I tried a little and it was good, but decided to add two packets of splenda. I imagine if you used the vanilla flavor soy milk you may be able to skip the splenda, unless you like your cold coffee sweeter! It was ridiculously fast and easy and tastes delicious! I’ll be sure to incorporate this into my summer refreshment menu!

DIY Compost Pail!

I’m back with a DIY to share with you! I’m always looking for tips on how to grow my plants more successfully. I only have a balcony to grow them on, so I try to use my space and effort wisely. In researching when to plant, I looked a bit into fertilizing and realized I have the resources to compost here in my kitchen. Only trouble was my space limitation. My condo/urban farmstead is roomy as far as living space, but not so much for gardening and I’m not allowed to do any kind of extreme renovation without approval from the housing committee. So I looked into what I can reasonably do, at minimum cost and effort.

My solution to fertilizing is to compost, it saves me money and it’s more ecologically sound. If you Google compost pails, you will find all kinds of containers in all varieties. I wasn’t about to spend upwards of $50 for what is essentially a slop pail, so I decided to make my own. I used a vacuum seal coffee container I had previously painted.

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I had painted the container with the intent of using it for dry pantry storage, but it was a different kind from ones I’d revamped in the past and wasn’t as large as I would like for storage. But it’s shorter stature and round shape made it ideal for becoming a compost pail. I got out my drill and purchased a carbon filter intended for installing on a cat litter box (a whopping $1.40) to use as a filter on the lid.

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I drilled four small holes into the lid and then flipped the lid over and attached the filter I had cut in half

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The filter helps to stop the compost from stinking up your house. I’ve already got the pail on my countertop ready to go. If you’re wondering what exactly you can put in your compost pail or how to compost, I found this website helpful. I am looking forward to adding the compost to my veggies and flowers later this spring and hopefully having a better turn out for my plants!

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