Mad at the World: The Continuing Saga

I contemplated the word saga and whether to replace it with a derivation using -suck- as a base, but decided against it because I couldn’t figure out how to make it make sense.  Which sucks for the word suck.  Mrs M and young master M have returned from their foray into darkness, aka a trip to see my inlaws, and I’m faking it like hell today.  Or I wouldn’t be writing anything.  I called the doctor about medications and I’m waiting to see if I can get the pharmacy to give them to me without a $20 copay to the doctor and then another copay to the pharmacy and then whatever extra over-the-top expense the insurance company doesn’t feel like paying after I already feel twice-plundered.

I’m exhausted, with another 3 hours of work ahead for work, and then whatever lovely labors I can accomplish under Mrs M’s thumb, which sounds a lot better than it feels.  For some reason she thinks I should drop whatever I’m doing (which is nothing) and wash her dishes immediately, so she was frustrated I didn’t wash them last night after 10:30.  I got tired and fell asleep and washed them today after she left for work, but that doesn’t undo the frustration she felt, ever ever ever, because I should do it now, now being whenever she says it needs to be done.

In short, she wants a robot that obeys, not a guy who wants a loving and reciprocal relationship.  If she had a robot that obeyed, she’d be better off.  Just like I’d be better off if the computer at the bank fell for me.  Robots are never exhausted, and they do as they are told.  I’m only assuming a computer at the bank would be rich, but it’s probably equipped with a damned AI Conscience, the prime directive being, make sure Deon never has what he needs and disallow any transfer of funds that might be deemed questionable.

She on the other hand would be better off with a compliant robot.  Her dishes would be done, her trash would be out, her recycling likewise, he could be programmed to fix shit and repair shit with precision, and any need for physical pleasure would be satisfied or she could just reboot and start the cycle for another run.  And her robot could go to work for her and make money better than her human companion.  He could work 24/7 with no need for breaks or distractions.  Except I hear her subconscious saying, “Where’s the fun in not having someone whose buttons I can push and watch for emotional output and overload?  This is so much more fun.”

She’s back, and already frustrated that I didn’t wash the dishes last night and then fall exhausted into bed without any thought of expectations of her.  I wonder whether I’d get what I wanted if I were able to muster the energy to do what she wanted right when she wanted.  The result would IMHO be the same, she’s frustrated because she doesn’t want to do that or too tired, or both, there would be a disagreement, and I’d end up out of luck, still.  So I didn’t do the dishes right then.  Instead I fell asleep on the couch.  Happens a lot.  Sucks.  We’re both too tired, we both want what we want, and neither one of us is getting it.  Or willingly giving it I suppose  Which compounds interest daily which means I suppose I’m as in debt for emotional support as I feel she is.  Sucks, who is going to invest toward a repayment plan first?  Me, doing the dishes,  represents a penny where a dollar is needed to delay foreclosure by an angry accountant bitch, and I’m already tired at work and need to sleep, but…

I did the dishes this morning before work, and then looked outside to observe my grass needs mowing, which means my parents grass needs mowing more.  So tonight I’ll load the mower and go, and go again tomorrow on my day off work to get the shit done.

Good with bad, she sent me to the chiropractor last week and there’s nothing wrong with my back alignment for all the lifting.  So the chiropractor was nice, but I’d have been happier if the … oh there’s the other thing that’s stupid.  Recall I got frustrated when the automated voice said how sorry it was but the payment was declined?  Well it actually went through, according to the bank.  So I guess the people at our lovely ISP company (who, if they’re monitoring this transmission, are actually brilliant and beautiful, and if not monitoring, have an automated program that’s complete shit), for some accidental reason outside their control, had a system issue where they hit our bank for the money after telling me it wasn’t there, and got their damned money, and pissed me off more than I already was for no good reason.  That, so I’d have been happier if the money I wasted on a copay could have been invested in something alcoholic because that works as well as going to chiro did.

What I learned after going to the chiropractor is that, for some reason, I apparently need to relax and stretch.  Go figure, for a person whose life is cramped and stressful.  Which comes back around to Mrs M, who has the ability to provide certain direct assistance in the area of relaxation, but is too tired or unwilling.  Paradox, which again I tried to play-on-words with “sucks” and it didn’t work. I’ve never been more irritated at my ISP.  They made me mad for no reason and it was the automated system.  I’d be willing to bet that if I had demanded talking to some live human being instead of just hanging up after hearing the automated “fuck you,” they’d have tried to extract the money a second time.

I question all my decisions and motivations.  Except for the decision to be cynical and a bit bitter, which seems the most logical choice to make.  It would be nice if I got what I wanted, and it might undo a little of the bitter cramped stress of my life.  But the lottery’s not paying me yet, I have no time or energy or marginal space in which to metaphorically stretch, and my job, the lovely kids, and the lovelier Mrs M  aren’t delivering in the un-bittering or de-stressing areas, nor in the marginal spaces I’d like.

It seems to be the unfortunate, continuing saga of my life, which sucks.  That is to say, when I want it to not suck, it sucks.  Do I make it suck more by trying to get the kids to do chores or trying to encourage Mrs M to encourage me?  Not sure it’s worth the stress and aggravation.  She’s trying, but in ways that aren’t exactly what I think/feel/believe would work the best.  I hear everyone, that is to say, both readers, saying, you should communicate.  Yes.  I should.

Ab-suck-lutely.

That sucked.  But I tried.

Can’t have alcohol, which sucks, until after I wear myself ragged with mowing a good 3/4 of an acre with my push mower, or more, tonight. (because I have to drive over to mum’s.)  And, knowing I have scheduled the day off tomorrow for a mental health day, and she hasn’t, sucks.  I did it so I could finish things around the house(s), mums and ours.  What I want instead is a surprise party.  A party of two, for which there should be cake, and steak, and a nice wake-up, not in that order.

Instead, she’ll publish a list of things she would like to see accomplished, “since {I’m} not working…”  Which sucks, because after I finish not finishing the list, she’ll be disappointed and frustrated unless I throw my back out, which she’ll say I shouldn’t have and then do the comforting thing but not the rewarding thing.  And if I finish the list I’ll be too tired for the rewarding thing.  A steak would be nice though, if nothing else.  But I’d trade it for better things I can think of, worth far more than $10 or $20 a pound (who am I kidding?  I don’t want to pay more than $6 a pound for steak, and it better be good for that price!), and de-stressing far better than a forced copayment plus cost.

That time when Deon was mad at the fucking world

Oh, I remember it like it was… oh wait, it’s RIGHT FUCKING NOW.

It’s my own damned fault.  I chose this shit.  Or, is it the rage before the darkness and despair that’s probably around the corner?  Or is it the edges of the darkness and despair hurricane already fucking here, bringing some lovely rage along for the ride?  FUCK.

I chose this wife, I chose this family, I chose this job, I chose every ounce of the tons of shit that is this life, and I chose to allow all of this bullshit, and I chose to leave things alone rather than risk fucking it all up, and to try to work hard as I could at making a go with what I chose.  It’s not fucking working.

It’s going to be a great weekend.

Mrs M is going to visit her ailing mother and her panicking father.  She’s experiencing the thing that eventually killed her mom, so that whole family is unnerved, exacerbated by the fucking idiot doctors who are doing their best to extract as much money as possible from the patient and family before finally killing her by not providing the treatment needed, but testing for everything.  Sadly, I know about the proper treatment.  It is uncomfortable and she has to quit taking blood thinners for a bit.  But if they don’t either fix the symptom to allow her body to heal itself, or do the treatment, I’m afraid my mother-in-law is going to die.  And right now, they’re not doing shit except watching her die with morbid curiosity.  “Oh, hey, how interesting!  Look at that!”  Fucking ghouls.

I’m not a doctor, so I have no idea what considerations they are working through while pretending to care and pretending to be busy while pretending to be deciding how to treat while deciding not to treat the symptom, which is, she’s dying while they’re hemming and hawing over other options. Ass holes.  With treatment, one of my friends with the same damned symptoms a while ago is now alive and well, but these doctors are thinking, “she’s old; let’s take the family for a ride down the financial shitter and then just let her die.”  My friend is 30 years younger, so they kept her alive so she could pay them out the ass, which I can only imagine they left bleeding money from the barbed-wire wound instruments they shoved up there to insure continued payment.

Insurance is bullshit.  You pay for insurance so you can get treatment by copay per visit, or copay and percentage of cost, or copay and whatever in-suck-rants bureau-craps decide they don’t feel like paying for out of what you’ve already paid them, and then you can’t afford it or coverage is denied, and then you die, and leave your family destitute after bankruptcy proceedings.  Cheaper to just stay home and die without treatment, which is my current procedure.  It’s a matter of time, which it is for everyone else.  I’m not encouraging the process, but I’m not discouraging it either.  If I don’t go I don’t have to pay more than my premium as required under fucking Obaminationcare’s law, which, by law, won’t help me with my situation but helps someone else help themselves to an extra $2600 a year more than I was paying before it became lawful pickpocketing.  Fucking thieves!

My solution to insurance is to make it fair, a flat percentage tax-style rate based on income, regardless of pre-existing conditions, and then if you need to go to the doctor, or the dentist, or the optometrist, you should be able to schedule it and go, without all the extra bullshit out of pocket expense, sweating about what’s covered and what’s not, and if you need medicine you should be able to get that as a part of your coverage, and if you need to see a specialist that should be covered too.  But that would eliminate a lot of high-level insurance company bullshit, and probably put a lot of high-paid ass holes out of jobs.  They’d never stand for my plan.  Imagine, making doctors, pharmacists, specialists, drug manufacturers, and all the other medical people just work, and figure out how to fight it out for their share of the pot!  And if it isn’t all spent at the end of the year, the tax rate goes down because people are too healthy.  They’d have to figure out how to agree, and maybe treat people for costs and maybe a little extra for the staff.  That’ll never happen; not while there are yachts and fat retirement plans and their kids’ college expenses and nice houses and divorce payouts to consider.  They wouldn’t like my definition of the word “malpractice,” either.  That’s not entirely the doctor’s fault, not all the time.  Sometimes malpractice is forced upon a doctor by an idiot insurance adjuster.  Murder wouldn’t work- they’d just find another fucking cog to turn in the machine, with an overactive “coverage denied” stamp.

Mrs M is going to join the family’s emotional playground, so she’ll come back still worried, all emotional, and in all ways exhausted.  And she’s dragging my son, who’s actually helpful when pushed a little, with her.  My daughter has to work, so she doesn’t feel obliged until Mrs M or I push her buttons or take away her devices or indicate how thoroughly unhappy we are.  Sometimes we have to do that to motivate both of them.  I don’t have the energy, it’s easier to do all of the shit myself.  But today, one of them put away dishes I washed and the other folded towels I washed, so that’s progress.

Speaking of button pushing, I had a call today from an automated collections service regarding our internet access, among other things, asking for a modest sum.  And a late amount, for fucks sake, when I trusted Mrs M to fucking pay it on time or tell me about it.  I called the lovely Mrs M., to inquire about it.  She said I should just call and make a payment.  Famous last words, for me.  Because really, anything that starts with “just,” should instantly alert me that things are going to hell fairly soon.

I called them back to make a payment and got a fucking “payment was declined,” from the beautiful-sounding computer voice. “Just” my fucking ASS.  Yep, I blew my stack, the stack hit the ceiling, and my rage pushed it all the way up there, past the ceiling, to the pain.  She’s busy saving money because she wants to go on vacation somewhere this year, and she’s the one with all the monetary control, deciding what’s in savings vs what’s available to pay bills.  If I had married the bank computer, I’d probably have enough to “just” pay the fucking bill.  But Mrs M is softer (sometimes) and warmer (occasionally), than a rich computer, so I chose Mrs. M.

This episode followed yesterday’s button pushing session, during which I sat silently while Mrs M informed me of upcoming expenses that she believed would completely overload our current budgetary considerations and I’d just have to get another job soon, as if jobs were just hanging from trees to just pick one just that fucking easily.  So I just already had a trigger and just let it just fester, and then today I just had another trigger and it just hit the bulls eye and just set me down this really dark, angry pathway.

And it’s my own fault.

Because why can’t I “just” get another job?  Other people can.  Other people can skate through life, jump from job to job, getting raises and earning enough to pay for shit they need.  And I have always chosen options wherein the end result is insufficient, and I am insufficient, and I am worth more if someone rich kills me on the highway so she can sue everybody than if I just keep my current status quo.

We’re encouraged to explore possibilities in life, up to a point.  And after that point, we start getting told “it is what it is,” without allowing or encouraging us to ask WHY “it is what it [fucking] is,” or why we can’t fucking FIX “what it is,” which is, “broken.”  Except it isn’t “broken,” according to some people, because they can get it to fucking work, after several tries, therefore it “works.” which is a lot different concept of working than I want to fucking hear.  Insurance and medical practice isn’t “broken,” in much the same way, and yet people who pay for insurance can’t afford medicine or treatment because it’s not covered under their plan because the insurance companies want everyone to just die so they can pocket the premiums, if they weren’t required to pay the doctors and pharmacists their pittance.  SO yeah, obviously THAT’S not broken, is it?  Nor is my sarcasm generator. (and may it never be!)

So, what’s undeniably broken, is ME,  and my budget, and “it is what it [fucking] is,” so if someone wants to step in and fix what’s fucking broken, that’d be great.  Stop telling me to “just” do anything when you should know damned well I “just” can’t,  Stop telling me to “just” get another job unless you fucking “just” know a recruiter who’s dying for someone with my skills, and stop telling me to “just” get two jobs because I don’t want to encourage the above process of death by cardiac stress, I already can’t afford to attend to and have no desire to push toward.

It’s my own damned fault.  I chose this shit, every last bit of it.  Obviously, I’ve chosen depression and stress as a lifestyle.  Statistically, the reasons reported for divorce are pretty standard sounding, and there wasn’t anything that surprised me here except the apparent overlap of multiple reasons why she might kick my ass to the curb.  Number one was, not working hard enough, and obviously, if she thinks I’m not working hard enough because why haven’t I just gotten a better (harder) job  that just pays more money or why haven’t I just gotten a second job already, then we’ve got a major fault line, and it’s my damned fault.  I mean, I haven’t had my first heart attack yet, for fucks sake, so what’s wrong with me?  And why am I not just fucking working harder?

If the marriage falls apart, does anyone know the number of that hot-sounding computer voice at the bank?  Does she like to have her dust blown out, or sucked out, or does she prefer being unscrewed and brushed out with a nice, soft brush, and then gently (or roughly) screwed?  Does she like power tools or a more natural, hands-on treatment?  If I can talk her into marrying me, I’d probably be able to pay my internet access bill, and maybe even a little medical and dental treatment too.  Anyone with the hookup?  What kind of cable would work?  Do you think she’ll reciprocate?  I mean, I don’t want to have to take matters into my own crossed wires and waste my energy jacking on.

Obsessed

Obsessed, 07/19/2017, Deon Mumple

When I wake up, you’re on my mind,
Add the chaos of routine every day,
When routine’s never quite routine, I find,
It’s to routine, I wish I could get away.

I sip my coffee, check, and think of you,
Try to smile, check, and to start to pray.
There isn’t ever enough time to do
Everything, and change is here to stay.

The hornets’ nest spins at the queen’s command,
Minions rise to detest her fair bidding,
I throw guesses in a bag, to face work’s demands,
With blurred eyes.  Don’t imagine I’m kidding.

She might kiss, brutally, before she’s mini-vanned
Well-hid exhaustion behind beautiful flurry
Then I regret everything failed I’d planned, and
Check again, then rush off, in my own too-slow hurry.

Radio drones simulate everything’s great; all stupidity,
As we drive to work, dodging two-plus ton bullets,
Too much laughter at things that aren’t funny,
Then a song, the only escape we might get.

On the outside pretending I give a shit for work goals,
I think of you, when not spitting silent bile at my screens,
Hope you’re all right, remembering your life’s tolls,
Wait for a break, hope you’ve written anything.

I might write, stealing time from a self-made hole,
Leave the reader wondering what it means
Don’t be alarmed, the writer would barely know
Tomorrow, from yesterday’s routines

Don’t worry, I’ve got a routine to hang from
Don’t alarm yourself for my emotional state
If change shreds all, who knows what will come?
Would it be worse than what I now hate?

Before I try to sleep, I check one more time,
To see if you’ve checked in, in some tiny way,
An email,  rant, a narrative, a tear, a smile, a line
Just to know, bad as it may be, you’re relatively ok.

I want at least that piece of peace of mind,
That peace of my world, as intact as you can be
Despite life’s grind, the rewind, and regrind
And I am sorry if I ever make you worry.

Compared to the alternatives I know are possible-
I’d rather not read about you from any other source
Though my normal seems comparatively dull
Routines, checking, checking, rechecking of course

If routine disappeared from the queen’s kingdom
I’d just worry more, for her, her minions, and you.
If you’ve not written, you’re who I’m waiting to hear from,
Call me obsessed; I’m just your biggest fan, being true.

Somewhere in the Middle of Time

Somewhere in the Middle of Time,
Deon Mumple, 7/14/2017

Once I was young and had not lost all innocence,
Saving for mischief without harmful intent
Now I still think youthfully sometimes
Not as often, not nearly innocent

The new-borne struggles to stand and walk force a pause
Stiffness searches backward for ancient agilities, lost
Time-drained life-slurry seeps, slow and viscous
All day, clouded or sunlit, a darkness palls

Despite hammer-blows of  time, those promises, those lies,
I still sometimes see the world through child-like eyes,
Hope’s glimmers, with softened, salted tears, as my
Heart hardens, corneas cloud, dreams die

Praying, waiting longer between for those blessed moments of clarity
To arrive- I expect shocks- but sometimes they come, oh so softly
Like a breeze you can’t feel, gentle after a storms’ ferocity
Wisdom already knows my dreams were all folly

Still I remember the innocent, liberated thrill of the pursuit,
All the while never knowing just how to harvest that fruit
Legs don’t want to climb, anyway, now, the point is moot,
Can’t reach, why try? Wither fast to bittering roots.

Sunday Night

It’s Sunday night, after a brilliant weekend.  I …no, no sarcasm.  I was fucking awesome this weekend.  Friday and Saturday mornings were rough as I was having a difficult time with my back, but it feels fine for now.

I went around shopping with my wife Saturday morning and we had a nice walk, after a lovely morning that included great coffee.  She didn’t start offering criticism and grief until Sunday night.  Maybe the way I grimaced and hurt when I tried to walk helped her have a little sympathy.  And also, maybe it was this:

I shampooed the carpets in my house.  They already have mud on them.  Well the one in the living room does anyway.  But the stairs and the kids’ rooms look great.  I even christened the floor by the exit door (in the same living room) with coffee this morning on my way to church, yay!  I think after the walk outdoors we may have had a little mud on our shoes  after the huge storm Friday evening.

But fuck you, universe fucker, it still counts.  The fact is I DID it.

I also washed dishes.  The sink is full again, but that’s only because my kids and wife and I like to eat and there was food on the table.  The fact is, I DID it.  And my son had a great time at summer camp.

I mowed a complete stranger’s grass this weekend, because I noticed the moving van last week and figured he was exhausted and found out he didn’t have his mower (yet?) so I offered.  He thought I was crazy, or joking, but afterward we had a lovely chat and I got to meet his family,   Did I mention the lawns in our neighborhood are tiny?  Ha, ha, take THAT, universe fucker, I DID IT.  He’s not a complete stranger now.  And tomorrow, I have to mow my  own grass.

It’s 12:21 am in my local area and I have to be at work tomorrow at 8:30 sharp, and I’m not tired.  So I am going to wash the damned dishes just to screw with the universe fucker a little.  Because, why not?

I borrowed the rug shampooer so I’m not paying a daily fee, so if I have the energy tomorrow, I’ll do the damned living room again.  It did a great job, and the extra capful of color-safe bleach didn’t hurt.  I do need to return it before I injure myself from all this work, though.

I love bleach.

My power cord came unplugged from my laptop un-announced again, so it’s just now charged.  So not only did I get a lot of work done around the house, I got to regale both of my readers with the tales of woe and half-faked mania.  I have to push myself to get as much done as possible before all my motivation goes to shit.  If it’s on schedule…fuck, I don’t want to think about it.  I also started a new bottle of whiskey, which, while I can’t medically prove anything, I think, made great oil for my rusty spine on Friday night and Saturday.  I confess I had enough to feel something like merry, and not just once, either.  But I didn’t have any today, and today I did a bunch of the above, probably almost half of what all I got done.

I hit a few triggers today, with the dog yapping and growling inappropriately, with the kitchen cabinets trying to spill all the shit stored in there all over in crazy disarray, when I (obsessively?) wanted it orderly and to just fucking stay where I had it positioned.  Fuck you, gravity, and the universe fucker with you!  And with realizing the carpet was re-mudded, and with sloshing coffee on it, and realizing the sink was full again, and with realizing my computer is still doing the lame-ass random text grab-and-delete bullshit, and dropping the power cord out without an alert, and with Mrs M’s “encouraging” pushy-ness, late-breaking criticisms, and not exactly the kind of stress-relief I was hoping for.  At least she bought the fucking whiskey.  Thank God this was a paycheck week.

And speaking of thanking God, they didn’t do the stupid song at church, so I don’t have to quit, yet.  Hopefully they’re thinking about if my email had a valid point, even though I got a pastoronizing response from one of the pastors. There can be no written admission that I was right, they have to defend and support themselves, I get that.

I read several brilliant blogs this weekend too, while I was supposed to be doing more house work, and also going on the work computer to try to accomplish miracles there.   I didn’t do shit for the office while I was here at home. So, it was a pretty nice weekend even if my grass isn’t mowed yet, the carpets need re-shampooing, and the housework isn’t re-done-done.  I enjoyed the moments (pre-critic) with Mrs M, and the sense of accomplishment at what got done, and the bubbly one-sided conversation with our son, and offering encouragement to our daughter, and even walking the dog.  Tomorrow I get to start all over again.

I have a sink full of dishes to wash, and then maybe I can sleep some before I have to work.  We’ll see.

Keep writing. I think it motivates me to keep on trying.

~DM (gives Demented Maniac a whole different meaning, doesn’t it?)

Anxiety Blows Chunks, Definitely Eggregious, Faking Great Hype…

Yeah it’s an alphabet acrostic.  I’m feeling the tightening threads woven into the net surrounding my soul.  It’s an invisible net.  I’ve imagined it.  It’s not there, but I feel it.  The thing I’m worried about hasn’t happened, might not happen at all, and yet it worries me.

It represents me, being potentially forced to make an uncomfortable and somewhat awkward decision, that changes things.  I hate change.  I want things to stay the same, or change in a positive way.  For instance, a change I would invite would be for that Publishers Clearinghouse van to stop at my door, bring me roses and champagne and a lifetime of having enough cash at all times to satisfy my bill collectors.  I have a plan for this, and that’s why I’m completely comfortable with the change, should it occur.  Firstly, I’ve never been given roses, but it’s totally platonic of the person bringing them and I can regift them to my wife because she likes those.  And second, I don’t particularly like champagne, so she can have that too, along with whomever comes for the ride in the van.

Mrs M jokes at me, her little passive aggressive way of not quite pissing me off by telling me we need more money.  She says I have an agua d’grifo budget and $12-for-a-6-pack dreams.  Bitch.  Here, drink this tacky PCH champagne, because we still don’t know any better, and shut the hell up. (Just in case you’re not a native FrendSpanklish speaker, “agua d’grifo” is mock Spanish with mock French affect, for fucking tap water.)  Those who speak Spanish, if they actually read my blog, would be …confused.  Scratching their heads, they’d think, “QEJ?” (Spanish for “wtf?”) and they’d hit that translate button so they could read it in something closer to Spanish.  FrendSpanklish, I think I’ve invented a new fucking word and a brand new language! Write it down, I’m going to copyright that shit.  It’s saucy (or saucier) because it’s got French in it, and because it sounds like we’re spanking our friend(s), and it’s got enough Spanish in it that I needed those letters, and it’s maybe a little English too.

All this to distract myself from the anxiety I’ll face this weekend, when I might have to change a major thing in my life, and, did I mention I hate change?  Here’s what happened.  They sang a song.

I know.  Deon, wtf?  (or is that QEJ?)  Did they sing it badly?  Why are you acting all triggered and shit?

It’s not the song, it’s the lyrics. They aren’t correct.  They represent doctrinal heresy.  So I got on my email soap box and sent a message alerting them about the mistake.  But they like repeating new songs, so I’m concerned they’ll do this one again soon.  If they don’t fix the song’s teaching, and I even gave them a simple way to do it, I’m going to quit.  I’m not a drama queen, I’ll just quietly slip out the back door and not come back.  I’m really praying they don’t do that, because I don’t want to quit.  Then I’d have to figure out where I can go and take my whole family with me.

I’m not feeling very exploratory.  We did this when we moved here and Mrs M picked the one of the two we were thinking of.  They were both on the same street.  Now the second one has money and land picked to move, but is in a dispute with some people who don’t want a church on their street.  I mean, I have heard of the neighbors protesting another bar, another casino, another strip club  (sorry, ladies!), another den of ill repute, but a Christian church?!

I don’t want to go somewhere there are protesters, because they give me a panic attack which may, in defense of myself and my family, result in me flattening them and getting arrested.  And I don’t want to get arrested for them being stupid.  And I don’t want to drive all over creation to find a new church that teaches it right.  And I don’t think I have the energy to plant my own church.  Although thinking of a name might be amusing…

Church of Mumple-Nap-Police, in honor of being arrested for decking protestors or whacking them over the head with my Bible (it’s not supposed to be a club, but if I have to defend myself…) The Church of the O, Deon.  Paul Donovan would probably sue me, and that’s if the lightning bolts didn’t kill me first.  Dogma a Go Go.  Mumplechurch. First Den of Distilled Wisdom. MumpleGrill, Bar, and Church.  Church of Giving It a Second Shot.  First Church of Mumple+Stein.  God, Grace, Grog, and Grill.  (That’s right, I’ve got your 4G, right here!)  Soul Tonic, with a Twist.  Doctor Deon’s House of Theology and Whiskey.  Nah, I’d have to go back to school for that one.  And most seminaries frown on studying at least one of those.  But SoulTonic is pretty good and doesn’t draw undue attention to Pastor D.

I’m praying I don’t have to quit and hoping they don’t sing that song at all.

10 Things the Church Can Do for People with Bipolar Disorder

I can hear you now, both of my regular readers, saying “Holy Shit, Deon!”  (Literally)  “A (potentially) USEFUL article?!”  Uhmm, don’t get your hopes up or anything.  It could be the regular installment of shit this blog normally has to offer.  And any guests from the actual church are either offended I said the word shit (TWICE!) and had the nerve to joke about it, and have been triggered into throwing their internet device into a bowl of bleach to sanitize it, OR, they’re offended I said shit and just closed the browser window because I’m obviously beneath their standards of holiness, OR, they’re curious enough to continue but reserve the right to choose one of the above options at some point while reading.

If you’re one of the third-option choosers, good for you!  I applaud your patient tolerance.  You may be one of those who saw a Tony Campolo clip in which he dropped the same expression but chided his viewing audience for being more offended at the expression than the worldwide situation he was trying to draw attention to.  If you haven’t, and you’re curious, here’s the quote:

“I have three things I’d like to say today. First, while you were sleeping last night, 30,000 kids died of starvation or diseases related to malnutrition. Second, most of you don’t give a shit. What’s worse is that you’re more upset with the fact that I said shit than the fact that 30,000 kids died last night.”
― Tony Campolo
I do not know if that statistic is still accurate, nor if it was accurate at the time of Campolo’s message, but if it was, and/or is, we oughta do something about Campolo’s awful profanity!!  No, I’m kidding.  We ought to do something about the starvation and disease.  And some are.  And sadly, some still don’t give a shit.  I’m going to err on the side of promoting life and curing the diseases we can cure, permanently, at the expense of the rest of the world somehow, and not at the individual expense of the human who just needs a vaccine, for fucks sake, they shouldn’t cost so much as to be inaccessible to “the least of these.”  I wonder how much it would actually cost out of the worlds gross domestic product or the investors in the world economy, to do that all around the world. I bet it wouldn’t hurt anyone at all, if we weren’t surrounded by greedy corporate fucks and idiot investors who are trying to squeeze every damned penny they can.

That little side rant though is not the focus of this article.  Or is it?

I promise, I will get to the point, and if you continue to read it you’ll get it too.  If you read it all and still don’t, send me a comment that says “Deon, you’re a fucking idiot and I still don’t get what you were trying to say.”  I LIKE comments if they’re not spam.  Well, most comments.  I’ll let you know if your comment was so mean or overly critical that I decide to never blog again.

So what CAN the church, or more to the point, PEOPLE from the church, do for people with bipolar?

This smacks of a list!  I wonder how many things there are.  Maybe you can think of a few that I didn’t think of.  Go ahead, include those in the comments and if I like them I’ll steal them and pass them off as my own original thought let your comment stay here published just they way you said it.  I’ll guess there are at least 10 things, and that way you won’t think my title was wrong.

10:  Love us unconditionally.  I hear you saying, “oh, but we do!”  Really?

What about that lady near the back who ran out of patience, and fired the person because they didn’t have a satisfactory medical reason for their absence during the last crushing depressive phase, when they couldn’t even get out of bed to eat, much less clean house, and driving to work seemed impossible?  She didn’t even bother to check on them, she just signed the papers electronically by check box, the one that automatically files the electronic termination documentation, sends the termination notice by text or email, and demands they turn in their laptop and any other corporate property within 30 days or face civil litigation, and had her HR manager’s assistant get someone new to fill that slot.

What about you, that guy over on the right?  You were charmed by her mania, seduced by her hypersexuality, and married the woman, but couldn’t figure out how to live with her flirtations with other guys, or other ladies, or her depressive phases when she just wanted to be allowed to cry and not fake a smile, or be left alone, didn’t shower for a few days (and how to keep her from trying to do potentially dangerous things),  or her overly talkative manic phases when all she wanted was someone to pay attention and listen, and go along for the ride (and keep her from trying to do potentially dangerous things).  You loved her when she was in between, when she was able to do everything “normal” people do, or force herself to do everything “normal” people do, but you ran out of patience when her mind went too fast and she couldn’t finish, or couldn’t even start, what you think are normal, basic, chores or tasks.  You ran out when she was too depressed to try, and the thought of trying and the expectation of failure made her cry and give up without starting, and the regret of wasting her life carried her down even lower.

What about you?  You were his best friend, you should have seen the trend and understood the symptoms.  He told you he was bipolar, trusted you with that information.  Then you and him got into a fight over nothing when he was raging, and now you refuse to even talk to him.  You might not even remember what the fight was about, and he certainly doesn’t.

Unconditional love means staying, at least trying to understand, and helping.  And then, staying, to be there when understanding and helping is needed again.

Matthew 5:43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same?

9:  Don’t presume anything demonic.  Just.  Don’t.  Do.  It.  I mean, if the person has an “I ❤ Satan” or a “Fuck Off and Die, Idjet!” bumpersticker, a tattoo of an inverted pentagram with a goat head inside, and a fully-reassembled chicken skeleton mobile including skull and feet hanging where your normal neighbors would hang their wind chimes…it’s probably a joke, so still just don’t do it.  They’re probably trying to frighten away annoying little children, their local PTA, their landlord, and the Homeowners Association.  That tattoo was probably buzzed on them when they were either drunk off their asses, or they were trying to be edgy or funny, or both.  Most people aren’t that kind of darkest-satanic-evil-evil.  Most of us are just normal-evil-evil, and a few of us have those very occasional episodes of if-you-don’t-leave-me-the-fuck-alone-I-will-murder-you-and-they’ll-never-find-the-body-evil.  ALL of us, even the pious holier-than-thou jerks, have our various favorites from the sin-buffet that we routinely, habitually choose.  I think the rumors about the rock and roll bands are mostly publicity grabbers and the song lyrics may very well be intentionally geared to “stick it to the right.”  If you get the song from those 5 words, well done, music fan.I mean, I want to scare away annoying little children, the PTA, the landlord, the HOA, other people’s damned pets, who feel it’s necessary to crap well into my yard and the owners don’t have the decency to pick that shit up, and their owners, and sales people, and burglars, and my own family…  do you think the chicken skeleton mobile would work?  I would LOVE to have that, as a work of art.  With an artsy, colored wax decorated egg hung on the inside.  (note to self…)  Why, WHY, are these called “Devilled?”


Would an I ❤ Ruthie Connell bumpersticker work as well as the others above?  Because I do.  (Note to self… )  I don’t ❤ Satan, but I think that’s hilarious.  A lot of things that Jesus healed on the spot when He was here were mental illnesses, most were more obvious physical illnesses or birth defects, and a few were legitimately demonic.  Only a few.  If medication helps in any way, it’s probably an illness and not a demon, so just don’t presume that.  Don’t judge, just love.  God is big enough, and good enough, to convict the world of sin,  or to convict a person with bipolar, if it’s important enough to Him.  Let God do that; don’t “help.”The bipolar person you know may very well be an atheist “on the highway to hell,” but you’re never going to reach them and get them to even consider Jesus unless a) you get the joke, because if they don’t  believe in God they probably don’t believe in Satan either, and b) you don’t judge but instead you work really hard on #10 there, which points squarely at you, Christ-follower. But you can

8:  Help them in spiritual ways.  I know people who claim to follow Jesus, who will openly, even pridefully,  say they don’t pray for people who aren’t Christ-followers, except to pray they repent (admit that God’s standards are right and they are sinners who need a Savior, turn from whatever sin, and ask Jesus to help them follow Him).  Well if you’re one of those legalistic pharisaical “Christ followers,” a) fuck you and b) I pray YOU’LL repent, you sanctimonious prick!  You’re putting a condition on God’s love that He didn’t put there.  If Jesus commands you to love your enemies, and if you have an enemy, there’s a good chance they don’t exactly follow Jesus.  If Jesus commands you to pray for those who persecute you, and if you’re persecuted, there’s a really good chance they’re not Christ followers.  If you refuse to pray for God to help, however God sees fit, or pray for God to tell you what to do to help them, you’re just plain doing it wrong.  And just to clarify, having a mental illness does not make someone your enemy, so why not pray for their need to be met, since that’s the smallest thing you can do?  Or are you a chicken-shit, afraid God will ask you to handle it personally for Him?  Which brings us to

7:  Help them in practical ways.  If you’re a Christ follower but in any way light on your own available resources, this one could suck, honestly.  I mean, REALLY, God?! I don’t even have enough for myself!  Praying is free, and You’re my witness that I did that already!  Now You want me to do WHAT?!  Yes. He wants you to help in practical ways.  Your church, or a church in their area, may have ways to help.  If you are at a distance, maybe you could refer them and if you’re really bold, call or email the church and ask them to try to make contact.   Other than the time you invest being a reference, or researching what’s in their area, and passing that information on to the person, that shit is FREE.  And the church will be (or damned well should be) delighted to reach out to offer help, unless their hearts are cold and they’re already spiritually worthless and dead.  You might find other free resources the person could use.  If you live nearby, you could personally deliver helpful things.  Bipolar is a mental illness.  It’s an illness that for some, is a disability.  The person may look completely normal in all ways, because mental illness doesn’t always show on the outside.So, what the fuck is wrong with me?  Why don’t I just find a better job?  Well, after you do it for 20 or so years, the routine is comfortable.  It was hard finding a job, and then we moved and it was hard finding a job again, and it depresses me to realize that no one wants to hire me unless I’m completely helpless and at their mercy to offer whatever shit wages they want to offer.  I tried to find a job that worked with my professional training and experience, and then after yet another few doors were slammed in my face, by churchy people, I’ve kind of given up on most churchy people.  They say they care, but when it comes right down to it, they just don’t give a shit about anyone but themselves and anyone who looks and acts homogeneously, and fits in their clique.  And when you get to know me, you realize that my cyclothymia/bipolar won’t let me fit into ANY clique.  I’m not even “normal-cyclothymic.”  But I’ve found more genuine, heartfelt acceptance, maybe even LOVE, from the bipolar community, than from churchy people.I hate change.  I hate not having a shred of control.  I hate not having money, sure, but even more than that I hate change.  The job may be shit, the pay may be shit, but it’s a job and keeping it is easier and less stressful than quitting, becoming helpless, doing the resume thing again, going out searching and begging for another job, trying to find something that fits my qualifications and pays more, having those doors slammed in my face, only to wind up being forced to accept being shoved into some new entry level job where I don’t know shit about how to do it, so where is the benefit?  Fuck that.I know a few churchy people who said they’d pray for me when I asked them for practical help.  One pridefully said he “could” pay our bills for a while while I looked for a better paying job, but never actually gave us anything.  The church, at that time, was helpful, when it was really really dire, they’ve helped with food, and they actually made one of our house payments, which was a huge blessing that kept our heat and electric from being shut off.  I am VERY grateful for that.  But when we were short on income several months later and we asked, we got a letter that said they’d pray for us but wouldn’t help with the actual practical need.  Fuck that.  When I’m depressed, when you withhold the good it’s in your power to do, because you think I should be, or I look, strong enough to “just” dig myself out of this hole you think I’ve dug myself into on purpose, you only depress me more.HELP PEOPLE IN PRACTICAL WAYS, if you can afford it.  Don’t brag that you can and then do nothing.  I realize I am applying a rather liberal interpretation to Proverbs 3:27, but I believe God wants you to help in practical ways.  Maybe you can spare an extra something around your home.  Maybe you can afford to go to Goodwill and you might find something they can use.  God’s funny like that; I’ve found things there that I am still using for myself.  Pray about that one, and go, and PLEASE tell me if you found something that just happened to be there that would be perfect for the person on your heart.  Maybe you could even save up a little and give them a small financial gift, or you were given something you can re-gift, that they need more than you do.  OK, I know the next few are actually things that fall under #7, in the strictest interpretation, but maybe you can do something, and again that might cost nothing but your time and a little sweat.  Consider it as sweat-equity, invested into a positive relationship with a person God wants you to love in His name.  You’ll have to ask permission, because some of these things are kind of personal, and some people will tell you to fuck off, but here are a few ideas:

6:  Bring them a meal.In my geographic region there are churches, including the one I’m currently attending, who run food pantries and some even deliver meals at Thanksgiving and/or Christmas and/or Easter.  If you live close enough, bring over a hot meal, or if they have a kid, maybe some milk or bread or chocolate, or wine.  Yes, WINE.  See also, Proverbs 31:6B.  No, I didn’t make that up.   It reads, “Give… wine to those with heavy hearts.(KJV)”  If you know the person is an alcoholic, obviously, don’t encourage that destruction.  But if they’re not, and you can, then DO IT!  A meal a depressed person doesn’t have to burden themselves with preparing, and leftover meals, are literally a God-send.  See also Psalm 104:15,  which in context teaches that God creates “…wine that gladdens human hearts, oil to make their faces shine, and bread that sustains their hearts.”  You should ask first because a person may have food allergies or whatever.  Be mindful, be respectful, be humble about it.

5.  Do something to help them around their house.  Maybe they need plumbing help and you can do that.  Maybe they need their lawn mowed or their snow shovelled, depending on the season.  Maybe their car needs something you can provide, like an oil change.  Maybe it’s a small, simple household repair kind of project, and you know it needs to be done and you know how.  Ask first, tools in hand, and then do it.  I struggle with certain house things, with certain others I can hold my own, but if someone offered to help me with something, I’d say yes in less than a heartbeat.

 

4:  Detail their car.  Or maybe buy them a car wash package or coupons or something.  I’d love to get my car washed and waxed and vacuumed.  And my tires need to be checked for proper inflation.  And my oil needs changing, and that damned check engine light for the sensor is on.  They’re on my list, but if anyone wanted to do any of it for me?  A God-send.  A gift of energy and/or time that I didn’t have to invest, or think about investing.

 

3:  Clean their house.  Well, maybe not the whole house.   Maybe you can afford to send a hired maid.  If not, maybe you can go wash their dishes, or take out their trash, or do some small thing(s).  And I said it before, don’t judge.  Their house is not teeming with filth and squalor (why are those two words both needed when they mean the same thing?) because they want it that way.  It’s that way because their energy levels are on a time limit, and they’ve run out of energy before they got to that sink of dirty dishes, that basket (or three) of laundry, that floor that needs sweeping/vacuuming/mopping, those windows that need washing, that woodwork that needs dusting and polishing, that trash that needs to be disposed.  (of.?  Where is my grammar-enforcing mum when I need her?!)  Maybe they ran out of dish detergent, or whatever other cleaning supplies, so they can’t do the thing, unless they can find the energy to go to the store.  I get to a point where I just can’t do any more, and sometimes Mrs M pushes me and I can fake it, and sometimes, I can’t.  I think everyone does.  But if you can help someone, even a little, be a blessing.  Maybe you CAN clean their whole house.  So why not ask, and then DO IT!

 

2:  Offer to run errand(s), or drive them to the store.  Offer to go to the store, or go with them to do the things they have to do that are out of their comfort zone.  Offer to drive them to the doctor, and then show up and do it.  Offer to watch their kid(s) so they can have a little genuine alone time.  See also

 

1 a) : Be a friend.  Get to know them, their family, their situation.  Be there.  Show up, check in, ask about them in ways that show you genuinely care and understand their disability.  Learn about it.  I’ve only ever been asked ONCE before about my personal care, when I was depressed, by someone who knows what bipolar does, and it wasn’t my doctor.  It made an impression.  Did I shower today? Brush my teeth, comb my hair, dress? Take my medications? Did I eat anything today?  What the fuck?!  Wow!  In my depression I wanted to ask, what fucking difference would THAT make?  But holy shit!  That level of caring about me, impressed the hell out of me.  And, 1 b) : Be a friend, and remember that at times people with bipolar just need to be alone, so when that happens, remind the person you love them, tell them you’ll check back later, and then, fuck off.  And then come back later for 1 a) , when it feels right.

 

Ever wonder what Ephesians 2:10 means for you?  Well, maybe (puts on sunglasses like CSI Miami’s Horatio Caine) it means one of these things. (YEEEAAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!)

 

I wrote this whole top 10 list and I am aware that I am teetering on the brink of another depression.  Ugh.  These are things I would dearly love for people to do to help me when I am down again.  But right now, I need to go home and fake some mania for Mrs. M.  Wish me luck.  Or pray for me.  Or something.