Monday, January 5, 2015

A Rule

From the news of the recent suicide of Leelah Alcorn in Ohio (long story, look it up), there has been a lot of opinion said and written about her and suicide, and many people resurrecting the advice to other how to know and then engage them if you think someone is contemplating and even planning suicide.

Well, here's a rule you should always remember! If you are not a professional therapist who has experience with suicide or a suicide counselor:

Do not think you know someone is suicidial and do not engage them in talking about suicide.

You don't know squat when it comes to suicide so don't make matters worse, and you can and often will, if you engage them to talk about suicide, and force them deeper into their own world. You can and likely will push them the wrong way.

The solution is to find someone who does know and talk to them, and then let them decide what to do, and if necessary, engage the person. And don't suddenly start acting and talking differently around them or to them. They're not stupid, and they're likley to react to you the wrong way.

And do not report them to anyone with legal authority. The last thing they want or need is legal intervention where they lose their rights and face legal hurdles. You could be wrong, and they last thing you want is to make a lifelong enemy.

In short, help them by not helping them, but just be a friend, no different than before, just be there whenever they want to be with you. No more. Just be there.

Saturday, December 14, 2013


I wish endorphins would work for me. All the years I've been running, hiking and now walking I rarely get any of what people call the "runner's high" from the endorphins produced from being active, especially from exercise.

Endorphins in my brain are like dumping the largest freighter in the world full of salt into the ocean, nothing happens. And what's worse is that all the medical Websites I read about endorphins, more specifically endorphin deficiency, I'm doing everything they tell or sell me which is supposed to help.

I've long come to the conclusion something is wrong to or in the part of by brain where endorphins are supposed to work. And now having walked about 1,600 miles this year, I still feel about the same emotionally and mentally as I did this time last year, with one exception.

The exception is that I don't think of death and dying. I've stopped thinking of that and actually found moments I felt mildly better, but nothing close to what endorphins are supposed to do to improve one's mental and emotional well-being.

What's worse is that a drug I was taking for two years for another condition which supposedly had the side effect of alleviating depression actually worsened my Dysthymia into depression and  exacerbated a condition which causes the small intestine to bleed.

What I've slowly lost is my interest and motivation is what I love, photography, Mt. Rainier NP and just living quietly in the community where I live. I had it before I pinched my Sciatic nerve in July 2012 and while it's slowly coming back as I walk and the nerve heals, it's hasn't been enough.

What's interesting is that losing the weight, now about 25 lbs (190 to 164) has helped me feel better about my body which I had long hated for being fat, some genetic, some from being less active for periods and some from the drugs I was taking for another condition.

That's the good news, to sustain an exercise program for a long time, a year now for me with another year or so to go. Walking has become somewhat addictive where I miss the days I don't walk, even the days walking is tiresome, the body or legs hurts and the weather sucks (hot or cold).

Through it all, I'd love to have some endorphins. Moments aren't enough anymore and drugs aren't the answer. I've learned that from other drugs, my body hates them and reacts adversely, mostly depression followed by becoming a couch potato and getting fat again.

Yeah, that spiral into the depths. I've been there too often including serious thoughts of suicide with one almost successful atttempt and I won't go there again. I just wish endorphins worked on me.

Monday, December 9, 2013


After all the miles I've walked, the nearly 25 lbs I've lost, and slowly finding the body I knew existed under the fat, when the endorphins should have and would have made me feel good about myself and happy about what I've accomplished, I don't.

I've long come to the conclusion one of two things don't work in my brain. Simply, it's almost impossible for me to feel let alone be happy for more than a moment, which leaves me thinking either the connections to the rewards center in my brain barely works or the rewards center itself doesn't work.

I know I can stuff all the drugs into my brain I want into it and nothing really changes. I also know that some drugs which are supposed to improve a person's outlook doesn't improve mine. I don't take anti-depressants because the side effects are worse than the drug's effect.

It's like walking on a narrow ridge between a beautiful valley and a deep, dark crevasse. When drugs are supposed to push you into the valley, they push me into the crevasse, and only not taking them makes me feel better, at least back to standing on the ridge.

Even a few years ago when I ran 15-20 miles a week, I rarely felt the endorphins I knew were there but didn't work. Even when I was taking a drugs for another condition, it made me feel worse and I had to stop which effectively stopped the changes the drugs was supposed to make.

I don't have answers for this outside of just remembering the few moments I feel good about myself and happy about my life. One like this morning when standing in the kitchen my body felt good from all the miles of walking, but then almost immediately told me I had many more miles to go.

All I know now is to keep walking, 5 to 6 days a week for 40-50 miles a week, in hopes of resuming running later next spring and hiking next summer or fall. And during this work there will be moments, hopefully more than a few, I'll feel happy.

The point here is that people who tell you happiness is a choice are full of shit, only because they have a false sense of happiness and a wrong definition of what it means to feel and be happy. They're simply ignorant of the reality of people.

But they sell this shit so people chase answers in drugs, therapy, whatever, trying to find happiness without realizing it's innately in them, if only in the smallest amounts or few moments, but happiness is hard work for some people.

It is partly why I walk, despite the weather, even because of the weather, I go out the door and walk 8 miles, to get fitter than I am now and to feel better than I am now. It's a choice I make, don't walk and I know how I feel, walk and I know I will change.

And maybe along the walks the moments will be more often and maybe longer. That's all I can hope for now, that the endorphins will work a little more and a little better.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Something Different

Well, I haven't posted here in about 3 months. Not because the depression and thoughts haven't come and gone but I've been walking a lot, see blog about my life and recent walking. It's been because the more I walk the less I think of death and dying.

The thoughts and interest to live haven't fully grabbed me yet, the endorphins take a lot time and exercise before the rewards center of my brain reacts and doesn't really fully take hold to make me feel happy about myself and my life for more than moments.

That's what Dysthymia does, overwhelm your mind so everything else is always a fight, and walking has renewed that fight where I don't think about dying anymore. It's a long, slow process to walk away from depression and every day is a struggle.

And that's where walking is the antidote. For 8 miles 5-6 days a week I have to focus on walking along the rural roads where I live. Every day and every walk is different. The weather is always different for the whole 2-plus hours.

The body and especially the legs don't feel or work the same, and the sense and mind can just open itself to everything from feeling the earth under my shoes, the wind, the rain, the trees, and the scenery, everything before me.

And it takes the mind away from death and dying. Even the times in places I find almost complete silence where I stop for a short time and just take it all in, and even then I sometimes think that if I wasn't there, no one would know or care.

But it's just a feeling I find somewhat joyful as it's complete freedom. Freedom from death and dying. And then I walk on.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Food as drugs

Food for me is like prescription drugs for others. If you stay on your drug regime the drugs work and you are, at least, better than being off drugs. If I stay on my limited diet my digestive system works and behaves itself most of the time.

But then every now and then I get hungry and have food experiment meals, some I know from past experiences aren't good and produce adverse reactions, and some I don't know because it's been too long ago when I last ate them.

And almost always, the reactions aren't good for 2-3 days minimum and sometimes 3-5 days and even a week. And yet I keep trying foods I know may or will make me sick. Like drugs for some, my diet is my drug to be normal.

And I hate it, not to eat like everyone else, to read a menu or stand before a gourment deli counter knowing everything is bad for me, and to know food is the enemy of my body. I hate it sucks and I hate myself along with it.