Monday, December 20, 2010

'Tis the season to be (exhausted, stressed, trapped, MURDEROUS) Jolly

WARNING: For those of you that are having a great holiday season or possess the Christmas spirit with all the warm fuzzy feelings that come with it, this will be an antidote and will most likely put in in a bad mood after reading.

It's the most wonderful time of the year!!, as the song goes. Christmas carols are abound with "Parties for hosting marshmallows for toasting and caroling out in the snow" and then there is the "Chestnuts roasting on an open fire, jack frost nipping at your nose". "All for "kids from one to ninety- two" blah blah , "Deck the halls with bells of FREAKING holly"

Bullshit! For one I live in a place where it isn't even winter at Christmas time- today the mercury reached 45C ( 113 F) in some areas where I live. Instead of playing in the snow, we play in the sand on a beach- if we live near to one. Most houses in South Africa are not built with air- conditioners, they are expensive and considered a luxury. So normally on Christmas day we are seeking a pool instead of a fire.

I could deal with that, I have been dealing with it my whole life. But what drives me bonkers at this time every year is that both fate and my family become almost uncivilised.

There is so much going that is causing us to be less than jolly- I might as well put it in point form. Note: This is a rant post some of the situations going on I can't help but be sarcastic about, but there are others that are truly tragic:
  • My writing has gone to pooh, I don't know if it's because I feel uninspired due to serious depression, medication or if I am just burnt out with writer's block.  
  • My parents and I are in serious debt- my parents under for the breakdown of their business AND my Dad's foolishness with money. As for me?. Let me just put it this way I was very young...overseas...with a credit card. Go figure.
  • Because of the lack of money there will be no presents what so ever this year- even buying stuff for a lavish meal seems wrong  knowing that we owe so many people so much money.
  • My grandmother who is in the final stages of Alzheimer's broke her hip nearly four months ago and has required round the clock care ever since then (She lives with us) because of this we have never really had the chance to unpack the huge old house we just moved into. This is just the year that my mother's best friend and her family have decided to come to us for Christmas ( we usually go to them ). So we are now in a massive hurry to fix, clean, unpack and decorate the house before Christmas Eve. Take note...this is all DIY.
  • The above is in addition to all the cooking, baking and shopping that needs to be done.
On to the more serious stuff:
  • I have just started Amitriptyline and am experiencing three of the side effects badly... dizziness, drowsiness and nausea. Add this to extreme headaches from my BIH and horrible depression- not a good mix.
  • As I have said before my grandmother requires full time care. If you were ever present for a loved one in the final stages of Alzheimer's you will know the heartbreak, the horror, exhaustion, anger and frustration that goes with it. She takes up literally every minute of our day, we have to go through hearing her scream, shout and talk ALL the time. She can't form coherent sentences to communicate. She is terrified of being alone, yet when we come to her she doesn't know who we are. She's at home but she doesn't know where she is. She sees things that aren't there. Now and then she has lucid moments where she cries and cries her shame, she calls my mother by her childhood nickname and tells us she loves us. Moments later she will descend into darkness again and begin yelling and screaming.
  • My Dad hates my Mom's sister
  • My Mom's sister hates my Dad
  • But my Mom still wants them to spend Christmas under the same roof...because it is "a time for family"
  • My Dad's treatment of me has become worse and worse over the last couple of weeks. He thinks I use my depression as an excuse and the reason I am now suffering BIH is because I "did it to myself". He also has no regard for the fact that my meds have serious side effects. Therefore, like my sister, I get no support from him. His constant bullying and downright meanness are wearing me, down making me bitter. My mission to forgive him of the physical and emotional abuse he inflicted on my older siblings and I in the past, is becoming almost impossible. One thing I will still blog about is the part he had to play in my addiction to food and I can tell you right now it is bad. E.g He saw me in the kitchen just now with something in my mouth. The ssarcasm was literally dripping when he said, "Eating again, are we?" and he was getting ready to launch into a full diatribe with the sole purpose to make me feel like crap when I cut him off short, "No Dad, I'm just taking my meds" and I took a huge gulp of water to swallow the ten tablets I had in my mouth.
All of the above mentioned is happening right now....with Josh Groban's Christmas CD playing in the background. Now you know why I said fate as well as my family can be almost uncivilised this time of year. We are a family of misfortune, but it is funny how some of the worst misfortune will save itself until Christmas. And we are all driving each other crazy!.

As depressing as this may sound the perfect Christmas for me would be to be holed up in a deserted house (my sister's flat in Cape Town is the only possibility) with a bag of Quality Street , a take away and a few Christmas DVDs and spend Christmas all by myself with the space and freedom to reminisce on the good and the bad, to cry and to sleep.

I am praying to God to help us, help me through this time. I am praying for strength to be there for people in my family that need me and to take care of myself at the same time. Tonight my mother and I are putting together a shopping list of food we need to buy. Tomorrow I start my marathon of baking as well as trying to turn the dinning room from a storeroom back into a dinning room again. I used to be the biggest Christmas spirit of all time I pray that in all this I will find it again :).


  1. Amen to your prayer. I am struggling this holiday season as well.

    We got more than six inches of snow last night and it's still not helping much. My entire family will be in town for Christmas and I'll be expected to be there and be happy. I'd rather just be in bed.

    If I didn't have children that so desperately want to go, I'd stay home.

    Best of luck to you as you adjust to new meds and try to get through this difficult time. You are not alone.

  2. Thanks Miss Robin

    Good luck to you too. I can't believe that all this fuss is just for one day out of the year and most people have forgotten the real reason why we celebrate Christmas.

    Still I hope that you can get some enjoyment out of this holiday season :)

  3. Oh sweetie, I hear you and how horrible everything is right now and you're doing the best you can. I wish I could ease some of the shit you're going through. I'm not in a very festive mood either. Yesterday, was, well....b.s. I definitely don't have the mountains you do that you're having to face, but we all have our own demons to deal with. Email me, (you can leave your info. on my contact form on my blog) if you want, as I found a great free ebook for people with bipolar disorders and other mood disorders to help deal with the holidays. Some of it, I skip through, but other info. has been really great. Sending you lots of hugs.

  4. Thanks Wendy,
    I just made a new post about how grateful I am for certain things that I already do have in my life. And I must say I am feeling much better today. What has really helped is clearing away all the consumerism and silliness that comes with the season and remembering the reason why I celebrate Christmas in the first place. Thanks for your kind words.

    My e-mail address is on this site- I'm sure you have my e-mail already? I'll go back and check :)