It's not what you are eating, it's what's eating you…

Trigger Warnings: In this blog, I write both seriously as an activist for suicide prevention and awareness, as well as trying to support loved ones who lost loved ones to suicide. Which in addition elaborating on what it takes sometimes, to manage  my own mental health issues. As well as what I go through with my own particular mental health issues.

The point I’m trying to make, is I will ALWAYS recommend that people in crisis get help from a clinically trained professional, in acute care facility, if necessary.

Which a lot of times, it is NECESSARY.

But knowing I’m probably the last person to be willing to do that, I put these blogs out there, hopefully to help those who it may benefit, who may be in serious emotional distress and are at risk of their depression being fatal and for those who lost loved ones and are in despair and/or heartbroken, at the loss of their loved ones. And it has helped people.

However, the last thing I want to do is trigger anyone, if topics such as suicide (from a patient and activist perspective)  are a trigger, please don’t read.

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“it starts with why

it doesn’t even matter how hard you try

its so unreal

even though I tried it all fell apart

all i know

it doesn’t even matter how hard you tried

I had to fall to lose it all

in the end it doesn’t even matter

what it meant to be  will eventually be a memory

I tried so hard and got so far

but in the end it doesn’t even matter

I had to fall to lose it all

but in the end it doesn’t even matter

“In the end” -Linkin Park
(disorganization of lyrics partially mentioned intentional/no copyright infringement intended) ”

Taking a deep breath, because I really don’t want to write this blog, but hoping that it helps someone.

It happens to be, as more time goes by post suicide attempt in August of 2008, my old life both before, during that time and after it, to present time, doesn’t get to be anymore closer of being a  distant memory.

It happened to be, and it’s not something I’ve blogged about, that while I have multiple blogs talking about my “one and only” suicide attempt and the consequences of it, I have not talked about, that I would’ve probably made my attempt, 3 months earlier, is that because I had someone I love dearly, someone I can’t identify, who was potentially suicidal.

So I had to bizarrely, get them the help they needed to be strong enough to not die of their depression, even though my own life for me was so physically and emotionally unbearable, that I knew and could only hold on for as long as I did, knowing that my pain would eventually end, once they were stabilized and in my misguided thinking at the time, that everyone I loved the most, including that loved one, would be better off.

I realize how messed up that is. Now. and for the last 8 1/2 years. And I’ll make my point and I’m going to admit somethings in hopes of helping other people, that I’d rather not be admitting, but if it helps someone in crisis and/or in despair, it will be worth sharing it.

It happened to be on Thursday morning, which I was debating on purchasing Linkin Park concert tickets, for that above mentioned loved one and I, for the concert that was scheduled in St. Paul, on August 15th, which would’ve been 3 days after the 9th anniversary of my suicide attempt, when a few hours later, it went viral that Chester Bennington of Linkin Park, had died the same way his friend Chris Cornell did 2 months prior, by suicide, which my loved one took really hard.

Part of the reason why that loved one took both deaths so hard was the fact that I did try to commit suicide, 9 years ago. And Linkin Park and Soundgarden was music they used to cope with, as they saw me medically and mentally disintegrate.

I related more to Linkin Park, during that period of time in my life, during my deepest depression that led to my suicide attempt. While it wouldn’t be something I’d be comfortable sharing, normally, I am now, plus a few other things, in hopes of those who are suicidal and to help those who lost a loved one, because the song “In The End”, was a song that help me identify why I felt suicidal, I did try so hard and in the end I thought it didn’t matter, nor did I think my life or myself did, feeling such a feeling of failure and being in such unbearable medical and mental health pain for as long as I was.

The main thing I’ve learned as an activist of sorts, is that not everyone can be saved, that their depression is going to be fatal to them, when it comes to suicide prevention and/or awareness. It’s not anymore of a choice to them, then having an incurable fatal “medical” disease versus mental health.

If I’m to be truthful, I’ve been suicidal since my suicide attempt in 2008. The only difference between why I am alive now, versus thinking my life and everyone’s life that I know and love the most will be okay, if I died,  is that I know at least in the last 7 1/2 years, that I’ve managed to stay alive even with medical near life ending crises, is that the people I love the most, will NOT be okay, if I die from my depression issues.

And it’s a very mixed blessing that I realize that the only thing I can do for my children and my family is not die from mental health issues, I can’t really do more than that.

And sadly, that’s really they only expectation they have of me, at this point.

For me to have any quality of life, though and this is what I realize, because I know better than to think that people who commit suicide, don’t know or care about their loved ones or they are selfish, which they aren’t.

There’s been a lot of discussion since Chris Cornell’s  and Chester Bennington’s deaths which would suggest otherwise. They had kids, didn’t they care enough about their loved ones, to get help or get better????

PLEASE don’t make that assumption or give that impression, as that ONLY  stigmatizes suicide and mental health and it doesn’t help those of us who have depression and/or other mental health issues that can be fatal and it doesn’t help the loved ones, they/we leave behind, for those who die this way. Or who tried to, in the past.

It’s making a hurtful and horrible impression that if we loved our loved ones, enough we’d find a way to stay alive. And not ever contemplate, let alone attempt suicide, which only hurts people, it doesn’t help anyone.

A lot of people will  NEVER understand the multiple and multifaceted reasons that play into deaths due to suicide, but if you wouldn’t tell someone who’s dying of Cancer, that they should get better because of those who they will leave behind, please DON’T for a second, make that impression on someone who’s mourning the loss of a loved one due to their depression being fatal to them and/or those who’s depression is at risk for being fatal to them.

As much as I’d love to say, it’s a wonderful miracle that I’m still alive, it doesn’t feel that way, most of the time. I’m not saying that my life is worse than it was from 2006 to 2011, but it’s not amazing, either.

While I can give myself some credit for having to survive some crappy things, and by sharing them, with this blog, as it has helped some people, I realize that people have been through much worse and handled it better and sometimes that makes me feel really bad about myself, especially as it applies to myself as a mother, who loves my kids more than anything.

For me to have any quality of life, though, and it what helps my depression and mental health issues not be fatal for me, I’ve had to realize that I have to care about myself for myself.

My love for others, as much as I wish it was different, cannot be the only reason why I’m still alive and that I make the attempt to have any quality of life, which does help, especially in cases, where peace of mind for those of us who have limited amounts of that, is so sporadic.

What saved my life post suicide attempt, when in mental health crisis, but not in medical crisis, status post “one and only suicide attempt” in 2008, is that I have the luxury of not doing ANYTHING when in crisis.

Meaning I don’t have to deal with people like most people do. I live by myself and can sometimes take life one hour at a time, which is my deal with myself when in crisis. It also helps me in a non judgemental way of trying to be kinder to myself, of having mental health issues and realizing that I’m doing the best I can and I do usually 1/2 the time am grateful for the things I’ve been able to experience because I’ve managed to live this long and try to concentrate on that, when on days, it seems like more of a curse.

I’m not medicated for my mental health issues, either. Both my long term PCP and my former psychiatrist saw that the severity of side effects are not worth the risks, especially since the therapeutic benefit is minimal at best with most psychotropics for me. And I don’t just get severe side effects from mental health meds, but meds in all therapy classes, so it’s not a manifestation of my mental health, that those meds don’t work, it’s an unfortunate medical fact about me, that my own clinical professionals also acknowledge.

It’s not an ideal though way to live for those of us who have a host of depression, mood and personality disorders. Nor is my being total hypocrite when it comes to not seeking clinically trained professional help, any longer even though I still struggle.

I realize some of the irrationalities of my thought processes. I know not every clinically trained professional is going to treat me like an unstable drug seeking hypochondriac who’s also seeking attention, but enough have. And I’m grateful that I have one long term amazing PCP who does a unique patient tailored approach to my care, which I wish other providers would do the same.

And while it’s working for me, it doesn’t work for most people, though. So I cannot overstate the importance of not only seeking out clinically trained medical and mental health professionals and realizing that if you don’t find one who is helping you, that you hold on, until you find the help that is right for you that gives you the chance of lessoning, if not eliminating the risks of your mental health issues being fatal to you.

And professional help can help those who lost loved ones where it doesn’t become a risk for their depression being fatal to them, as well.

I can only hope that we lose the stigma of mental health issues once and for all, so that people can be in their best health. And what that looks like, is just as unique as we all are.

But we can’t do that without removing stigma and judgement from mental health issues. As well as having more options for evaluation and treatment both in pharmaceutical and non pharmaceuticals treatment therapy options.

I wrote this blog, in hopes that people will try to get past stigmatizing suicide, to provide support for those who’ve lost (or nearly lost) loved ones due to suicide and/or accidentally died due to overdoses. And tried to help by sharing what is working for me, when in crisis, even though I realize it’s unconventional and that it may not work for most people.

But again, I’m not a clinically trained provider. I only know what I do about so many of these issues by either personal experience or those who I’ve helped personally since 2010 via social media, and in almost the 4 years that I’ve been blogging.

But I do believe that professional help is best. But I also understand better than anyone (as I’ve discussed on multiple occasions the bias I face when seeking medical attention) why some cases, such as the bias I’ve experienced, that in my case it causes more duress than it alleviates.

Note: I would’ve wrote this blog sooner, but I’ve had technical issues that make blogging almost impossible at times with having internet and device issues.

Because of the technical issues I still have, I cannot copy and paste links, I do have domestic international support for those who are suicidal and their loved ones on a few blogs.

Also same rules apply, judgemental or non constructive responses will not be published. I’m okay with a difference in opinion, if shared respectfully and mindfully. Thanks!!!!!

IMG_20170719_223504_109
(pic of me taken at Downtown Minneapolis Target (whole other blogs about my love hate relationship with Target, coming up) 7-1-2017.

Here’s what Google and search engines terms on WP tell me what you wanna know about me:

IF you’re a fat person hater (more about that, in THIS blog), Yeah, I am fat as fuck, over 15 1/2 years after gastric bypass surgery AND my sentence syntax still sucks, as well as YOUR search engine skills (and YOUR psyche) really SUCK, as I’m not hiding on social media, this is far from the first/current full body pic, that you’ve managed not to found out about me, or anything else “hatable” about me.

IF you’re a weight loss/weight loss surgery peep who hates on people in the community (many of you don’t, that’s why I still co-exist in the wls communities :)), I ALREADY know you won’t EVER be like me, with complications and more importantly, that you won’t ever gain ANY of your weight back, like me AND at 2 1/2 years status post of weight loss surgery of your choice( the average length of time post surgery of my community of wls haters) , you ALREADY know everything, so congrats on both your XXX lbs gone FOREVER and being a bariatric surgical PRODIGY!!!

And fucking FINALLY, if you’re a Fat Acceptance advocate, I still defend my right to lose weight and anyone’s elses and find thin bashing STILL just as repugnant as fat bashing and/or not accepting and being respectful of people’s right to do with their OWN bodies, their business, so yeah, I’m epically failing as a FA, too.

NOW that we got the fun of BODY POLITICS outta the way, wanna talk about just good ole fashion “normal” (heh!) politics????)

***Trigger Warning/s: Even though this blog is more of an update/personal nature blog than activism, because I talk about serious subjects, even when I’m venting/ranting, which if a picture explanation, is just THAT wordy and ranty, I have a feeling that this will be much more of a “fun” blog to write, than it will be to read.

It’s too bad  I can’t rent my blog/me out, as a sedative.

HOWEVER, even when “venting” , I talk about serious subjects and sometimes when NOT in “activist” mode, make a little fun of them (my own issues). IF you’re easily triggered by serious topics and/or are a danger of hurting yourself or others, PLEASE seek professional help in acute care facility for evaluation and treatment. Also, if you’re triggered by profanity, please don’t read. Thanks!!!!***

Okay, with above business being taken care, I’m kinda pissed that I couldn’t title this blog “Fuck You 2017 and Fuck You, 47th year”.  Like I did with my birthday blog from last December. Well, I mean I could, it’s still a free country (no,not really) and there is still freedom of speech (no, not really, EITHER).

It’s more like there’s consequences (depending on who you are and I think because of KARMA (which I’m still NOT sure I believe in) or not, depending on who you are, or who you aren’t.

Or a scary amount of disproportionate consequences (or not) from your actions or lack of actions, regardless of how well meaning, misguided, to the downright evilness of intentions, depending on the person.

That’s the FUCKING problem, I’m dealing with, nowadays. I know what my problems are, genuine and irrational. I know how lucky I am, in a lot of ways. I’m still ALIVE, everyone I love the most is still ALIVE and my life is NOT the LIVING HELL that it was in 2006 to 2011.

But as the oldest and ongoing winner of the Ms. “has a fucking frightening lack of responsibilities in the” Universe pageant, my life ain’t the fucking bowl of cherries, it should be.

Or it’s one that I keep choking on the pits, so to speak.

When I think of my life, exactly 14 years ago, I was a full time employed single Mom of 2, with a great new baby girl and an awesome almost 11 year old son, who just returned back to work, after a 3+ month maternity leave (DAMN, I USED to be really good with money, among a zillion other things, then) my life wasn’t anything resembling this fucking hard, as it is now.

While I count my blessings for what great people my children have turned out to be and how sad I am, that I had so little to do with that (if you’re a new reader, that’s covered in many previous blogs).

I’m just really sad that this just seems to be such a fucked up scary world for them to exist in. And I can’t do much to protect them from that, except warn them of potential hazards, not going overboard, as I really don’t want to sully any kind of more positive outlook on life, they may have, compared to my outlook, but at the same time, I don’t want life to give them a big ole punch (ok, many fucking punches) in the gut, that they will hopefully survive (as well as THRIVE)  better, than their mother seemed capable of.

I just don’t want that to be my fucking legacy to them, my legacy to myself and/ or the world, for the matter(s).

And while I’ve accumulated, some (ok, very little) wisdom that normally comes with age and know who I am and am secure with who I am, as well as messed up about how my life turned out, I don’t want my legacy and/or my current identity tied up as “the loving single mother who had the great life experience of having 2 great kids, sharing a plane with Princess Diana (in 1996, also in other blogs) and the screwed up luck of having mental health issues that I was unaware of at the time in 2001, going into a gastric bypass, that I was lucky enough to have a brilliant surgeon who performed a technically performed bariatric surgery that I responded physically HORRIBLY to and nearly died from, and lost my crap and nearly got committed (also in other blogs) who ended up needing a gastric bypass reversal and is now a very wordy medical and mental health activist”…..

YIKES!!! That was a mouthful!!! It’s also the reason why the owner of this brain is not on Twitter, very much. Let alone social media (which I’ve written other blogs about) very much anymore.

I get that in this wordy ranty blog of mine, it’s taking me now 1100 words to make a point/s.

And like no one, except for me (on occasion) has that kind of attention span in 2017. And most people don’t have the time or the inclination to dwell on matters of this nature, even though as UNRELATABLE as most of my blogs are, to most people, I apparently resonate with quite a few, as my blog has been read in 87 countries (fun fact!!!) and 6 continents (Seriously, WTF, Antarctica, don’t people dwell about serious shit at 3 a.m, too???).

Apparently, some of my blogs, such as my most read blog, to date which the “The Project Harpoon People Can GO Fuck Themselves” (way to go ME, for keeping it classy and concise, right??) which I found myself the target of a group of haters that popped up after the Harpoon peeps got shut down on Twitter.

It’s not the first time I had found myself a target of haters or Fat Acceptance hatred. It was the first time of being eviscerated by a large group of people (1100 to be exact, holy shit, right???)  too mean, stupid and hateful to find out anything other about me, than I am wordy blogger who blogs about Fat Acceptance and had a gastric bypass (that and a bunch of other stuff about me, was in particular blog) that I apparently epically failed and was a bitter, ugly, fat as fuck 500 lb ugly chick who can’t write a simple sentence. And was hiding behind a blog.

Cause it’s not like I have full body pics from different times in my life to current times that are PUBLIC and can be found in about 2 seconds, when doing a search engine on me or my blog name, which I actually do have. And it’s not okay to body shame anyone in the manner they shamed me, regardless of how much I would weigh.

I guess that serves me right for finding that group, when “Googling” myself at 3 a.m. (both under my name and unstapledlisa) and may I suggest that you dear reader, don’t do that. “Google” yourself, that is. If you’re that bored, feel free though to read the long mean and hateful thread at Voat, under “FatPeopleHate” that I found myself being discussed quite viciously. If that isn’t enough for you, I also can be found at the biggest trainwreck site, which one of my mental health wordy blogs got nominated there about 3 years ago.

I’m at  almost 1400 words (FUCK!!!)  and I’m finally am going to make my points!!! YAY!!!

I still at rotten overripe,oversized  and old age and person (by weight and looks) at an average size 14 and 47 1/2 (in age, not size, not that their is anything wrong with that, you fucking stupid and mean body haters, see I can fight back, too???)  get judged way more for what I look like and what I weigh (depending how fat or not fat enough, depending on who you’re asking) than anything I ever fucking  did or anything I ever fucking said.

By both people who know me well and people who don’t fucking know me at all. Or people who’s responsibilities are to know me better and/or not judge me (i.e. medical professionals/see past blogs on “md-ptsd”, although I advocate for clinically trained medical and mental health professionals, as they are their essence, human beings).

I get my own barriers and my unique barriers in resolving some of my issues. I even have the understanding of others barriers. And have empathy for most people.

EXCEPT for fucking  murder/suicide perpetrators, rapists, pedophiles and people who hate on any class of people for any reason, whether its on me or others and I can live with that.

I’m just having so much fucking trouble adapting to a world, that seems as it gets so technologically advanced, people become more scary and uncivilized to me. And I can’t do anything about that, other than to bring awareness, that while I know my own issues, that it could help, with removing stigma about so many things, for others to be aware of their own issues that could possibly interfere with others right to a safe and peaceful enjoyment life, too.

Not just for my sake. But for those who I love the most (i.e. my children) and so many innocent others, where we at a time, never had so much that should unite us, but is also dividing so many, at the same time.  Or that HATRED is uniting people, way more than acceptance (and again, if that doesn’t work, try apathy, yes, I said apathy not empathy. you don’t have to like, let alone love on something you’re predisposed to hate on, but try to at least be indifferent, OK?) should be and how terrifying I find all of this to be.

(see, for the 2 of you, non-haters, the above 5 paragraphs is the worthwhile reason I wrote this blog/you were rewarded for your patience)

How the FUCK do we FIX that!?!?

If you know, feel free and tell me, so. Try to be respectful about it, though, OK? I don’t go either in others online or offline spaces to make them feel unsafe. Either intentionally or unintentionally (though you now have a current pic, of what I look like, if you see me out and about). I know that this obscenely overweight smoking redhead does her fair share of scaring people, unintentionally, when out and about, in Downtown Minneapolis where I reside (which if that’s the case, stay home, because I’m definitely not the scariest thing  that you’ll encounter down here), I respect the right of others peaceful and safe enjoyment of their own lives, both in their private, public, offline and online spaces.

And wish that fucking everyone realized that everyone has a right to that. And now, over 2000 words, later, I made fucking finally made my point/s.

Note: If the rantiness and wordiness of this blog didn’t give you the clue, that I’m absolutely not going to give a shit, let alone post anything that has no resemblance to my “agreeing to disagree” respectfully stance, don’t waste my time or your own, by sending me something that I won’t read and I won’t publish, both in hatred of me, or any other.

 

(REPOST/Originally published last year, due to the safety issues this blog addresses, thought it was worth re-mentioning )

fireworks

http://www.popsugar.com/moms/Babies-Fireworks-Yes-27331158

http://www.westsoundwildlife.org/wildlife/Coexisting/CO_Fireworks.html

http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=1+2174&aid=2545

http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Newsroom/News-Releases/2014/CPSC-Reports-Increase-in-Fireworks-Related-Deaths-and-Injuries-in-20131/

http://www.nfpa.org/news-and-research/fire-statistics-and-reports/fire-statistics/fire-causes/fireworks

For those who shoot off fireworks near their cabin, that doesn’t have any neighbors within a 100 acre radius,  this blog isn’t for you….Although it still might help due to the safety issues consumer fireworks, pose on people,pets and property.

As Independence Day approaches, this needs to be said. I LOVE elaborate  firework displays, as far as municipal/professional firework displays, executed by pyrotechnic professionals , just like most people.

While I don’t have PTSD triggers from fireworks ( I do from other life issues), lots of people and pets, DO have PTSD triggers from fireworks.

Although the noise from fireworks, does cause physical and emotional distress for me personally, as I get older and more sensitive to noise and light,  but can’t be classified as a PTSD trigger, as it for so many people.

And that’s one of the  the reasons for this blog. The safety issues that consumer fireworks can pose, is the other reason for this blog.

The above links do explain the PTSD triggers and physical and emotional distress that fireworks can cause in our military people with PTSD, babies and toddlers and pets.

Consumer fireworks can also cause PTSD triggers in people who have survived shootings and/or have lost a loved one, who either died or survived a being shot by a gun.

Going into this holiday weekend and going forward, this is a gentle reminder, that if one loves to shoot off consumer fireworks, please understand you could be cause psychological if not physical harm to both people and pets.

So please keep in mind, that while even if it may be legal for you to shoot off consumer fireworks, it’s not a good idea for multiple reasons.

In addition to the PTSD trigger  issues that it may trigger in what I said in above and in links, 8 people died  and 11,400 people were injured due to consumer fireworks in 2013. That’s an increase from years prior, as more states have made them legal.

Just because they are legal, doesn’t mean they aren’t a safety hazard both physically and mentally, is the point I’m trying to get across.

And if you’re going to do so, do so on the 4th of July, around dusk, when people expect to have to deal with the noise from them. Any other day and any other time,  makes it harder on those with PTSD triggers and is still a safety threat.

So if you wouldn’t drive a car or operate a boat, intoxicated, don’t think that you’re any better off personally or to the public , if you’re randomly shooting fireworks, to either celebrate the 4th of July or any other holiday or personal celebration, day or night.

There are better ways to show that you’re patriotic, that doesn’t have an adverse effect on others, like consumer fireworks DO.

Don’t even bother trying to argue with me, that this  a free country and you can do what you like, just because it may be legal, where you live.

People who fought for your freedoms, are being adversely effected by consumer fireworks being launched on any other day or time, so you’re not honoring them.

What you’re actually doing is showing that you’re a jerk, with a total disregard for people, pets and the general public, by launching fireworks at any other time, than dusk on the 4th of July.

Note: Respectful difference of opinions will be published. Feedback as far as those who suffer from PTSD triggered  by consumer fireworks are also welcomed.

Disrespectful comments are not going to be welcomed , NOR  will they be published.

My blog, while NOT a dictatorship, ain’t a democracy, either. So please don’t waste your time or mine, with anything hateful.  Thanks!!!!

I knew I’d eventually get around to writing a blog about Carrie Fisher’s death, I knew that 48 hours after she died and then her mother, Debbie Reynolds, passed on, that I would, I knew I probably would wait until all the media attention regarding Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds’s deaths had subsided.

Unfortunately though, the coroner’s full report was made public, regarding Carrie’s death, a few days ago and now her death for all the wrong reasons, is back all over the media.

There has been NO ONE celebrity, actually NO ONE HUMAN BEING,  that has done more to remove stigma about mental health and drug addiction, than Carrie Fisher.

In my last blog of 2016, which was written before her death and were few and far between, I did talk about Prince’s death. As well as most of my blogs of this year have been super serious between trying to start a dialogue about the super stigmatized subjects such as murder/suicide and the opiate epidemic.

This is where things get kinda  tricky for me, to keep on talking about removing stigma regarding mental health and the opioid epidemic, as they do go hand in hand.

While it’s possible to have mental health issues and not have an opioid addiction, it’s not vice versa, and I know better than anyone, to know how lucky to have escaped that, as far as I’m concerned.

But being the activist that I am, I have to choose my words, kind of carefully. I’m not a psychological or medically trained professional, the only reason why I’m writing yet another blog that involves opiates, is because I don’t think that what was in Carrie Fisher’s body at the time of her death, is what necessarily killed her.

The coroner’s report can’t be conclusive of that, for the matter. I will go out on a limb and say that I think that stigma kept Carrie Fisher silent this time, regarding being back on drugs. I think we live in a society where actresses, even if they are beloved legends, aren’t supposed to age or gain weight.

Even actresses who are legends like Carrie Fisher has been, the last 40 years. Add bipolar disorder and a past history that she shared quite freely regarding drugs and alcohol, that unfortunately with most of the psychotropics that are used to treat mental health issues cause excessive weight gain.

I know that better than anyone, that’s how I was able to gain almost 100 lbs, in under 2 years even with serious gastric bypass complications that while I’d crave massive amounts of food, I hadn’t had a prayer of being able to eat enough or keep anything down, to gain that amount of weight.

And while I’ve said in past blogs and it’s true, being fat again after weight loss surgery wasn’t the worst thing to ever happen to me, I’m NOT in the public eye, either.

Absolute NO ONE gives a crap about what I have to say, what I look like when I say ( well except from a few haters).

Which is something I’m extremely grateful for.

Which was one luxury and neccessity that Carrie Fisher NEVER had, when fighting her own demons that caused her to have those drugs in her system, at the time of her death.

Unfortunately and heartbreakingly whatever reasons she had, died with her.

Carrie Fisher, in the last year or 2, in her life both doing publicity for her last book and for Episode VII would make a joke, which now in hindsight, is NOT  funny in the slightest. She’d joke about that they only wanted to hire “3/4th of her” and she was expected to lose some weight to be able to be cast in the Star Wars franchises, 35+ years after the first one.

I can’t help but think that being on tour and living in a society that’s so weight and looks obessed had some part in her returning to using drugs and not being able to talk about it, before her death

While she felt compelled in the past to talk about mental health and drug abuse to remove stigma, there’s only so many times when celebrities regress, that they can help without risking their careers and I think that’s what Carrie was up against, should she have sought treatment, again.

I, unfortunately am not even 1/100th of the activist that Carrie Fisher was. I can’t act, I can’t sing and I obviously am not a thriving writer.

And the last thing I want to do as an activist is concentrate on the circumstances of her death. I’d rather concentrate on how she lived her life. Being an amazing activist, actress, writer and singer.

But it does haunt me that for someone who did so much to try and remove stigma, that she possibly died in part, because of stigma regarding mental health, drug addiction and relapses, not just necessarily due to mental health and drug addiction.

But because of the looks obsessed society we now live in.

So hence, the reasons for this blog. To try and remove stigma by creating an honest dialogue about addiction, in hopes of it saving lives. To try and create a dialogue of needing more treatment options that don’t have horrible side effects where that people don’t have to choose between gaining a lot of weight and their sanity, as well as other medications in therapy classes that have almost more adverse side effects than they eradicate in both medical and mental health issues.

We need to be able to have honest and open dialogue between patients and providers. We need as a society that anyone who is struggling with drug addiction can be able to talk about it without stigma. Which there is still so much stigma out there, that people are willing to risk their lives, by finding a dealer versus a medical and/or mental health professional.

We need to stop putting pressure on human beings to be at a weight that is not feasible for them. And to stop putting pressure on both women and men (although this does happen more to women) of expecting them to not age, and expecting them look like the did in their 20’s, when they are in their  early 60’s.

But we don’t have a prayer of eradicating deaths and all the life ruining issues that are still around due to STIGMA.

STIGMA IS AS STIGMA DOES…IT HURTS AND IT KILLS…

Rest In Peace, our beloved badass Jedi Princess Carrie Fisher…..
And Rest In Peace, Debbie Reynolds, an amazing activist and entertainer…..

Note: Comments that are potentially triggering to anyone will NOT be published….

(Note: I’m not normally in the habit of reposting blogs. This blog that I wrote and published exactly a year ago, reminded me of a happier and much more productive time in my life.

If anyone would’ve told me that in the 21 years following what this blog is about, my life and almost everyone else’s, for those of us who’ve been around awhile, and have managed to escape, horrible tragedy, obviously people have some major changes in their lives, mine is stranger than most, given the fact that 10 years after this EPIC moment in my life, 10 years later,  in 2006, while my life still was completely different, in the fact, instead of being a very overweight loving single mother of one, I’d be a very sick (to get even sicker and nearly die, including my daughter who she and I nearly died when I gave birth to her in 2003 but I’d be a very thin single mother of 2, still hoping to launch her own business. And I also nearly died because of my mental health ( “my one and only” suicide attempt in 2008) and for years gastric bypass complications that  I would’ve died without my gastric bypass being reversed in 2010, I still can’t get over, the twists personally that I’ve gone through.

Let alone, still trying to grasp that while we were still a fairly evolved society, I don’t know if anyone knew that 21 years ago, from this date, life would be in both wonderful and horrific ways, the way it is now.

But because my blogs have been so serious and on the sad side, this year, I needed the reminder of ONE absolute AMAZING thing in my past, that I can be somewhat proud of. As while I didn’t get to choose being on that flight, my being really good at my job at the time, was what got me the opportunity.

IF you need to share something amazing either past or present, that was a happy life changing moment in your life , feel free to do that in the comment section of my blog.

And while I’m thinking of London and Paris, fondly of the past, I’m heartbroken what’s happened there, in the last 2 weeks to 2 years, let alone globally, sometimes it helps to remember where there’s life, there’s hope and fighting the good fight, in all types of evil and  hopefully that’s how we can honor those who’ve lost their lives in such tragic circumstances. As well as all those who are no longer with us, for whatever reason. Peace ❤ )

princessdi

( pic above found on internet, last year and was what Princess Diana was wearing (and so was her double) when boarding BA296 on 6-6-1996 from Chicago O’Hare to London Heathrow/ no copyright infringement, intended )

(No copyright infringement intended with above image and video)

For Zoe Arielle, Zachary, My Mom and Dad……

You’re probably thinking, where the heck have you been the last 3 months, Lisa?

Not gonna talk about that today. I will talk about what I was doing exactly 20 years ago, but I probably should add some back story, whether you’re a new reader of my blog or you’ve read previous blogs of mine.

For most of my working life, I did customer service, as a job. I had been employed for over 4 years with CVN/QVC (QVC bought CVN in 1989) and in Fall of 1992, when 9 months pregnant with Zach, I moved, lost a job (was laid off) and had him in a 2 1/2 week period of time.

For the first 2 1/2 years after Zachary was born, I did childcare. It allowed me to work full time and be with him. The first year, I was a nanny. The 18 months after that, I worked in a home daycare.

In 1995, I decided to go back to working in customer service. I missed having a job with benefits. So I ended up getting a full-time  job at Carlson Marketing Group, on the account for British Airways where we managed their Frequent Traveller Programme for the U.S. (brit speak for frequent flyer program).

I had amazing skills of getting really interesting jobs in “white collar offices” and/or large companies, based in Minneapolis, for  below “blue collar” pay. Even though most of my working life, the benefits at any company I worked at, were good.  I was paying almost 50% of my income at the time, in rent for a 1 bedroom apartment that Zachary and I lived in and I grossed $30 too much for food stamps.

The irony of the above, will become relevant in a few paragraphs, please be patient with me.

But life at that time, for the most part, was lovely. Zach and I did ECFE (Early Childhood Family Education) in the evenings, twice a week and I had facilitated for the last year, a single parent support group for over a year at that time, at my local YMCA.And I was really good with money, then. And my parents helped out with automobile related issues, which helped.

Working on British Airways for CMG, for the most part, was a great job. And I had amazing communication skills, which was needed, given the diversity of their clientele. We had to deal with celebrities, heads of Fortune 100 companies and obviously their staff. And while BA was a demanding client, they treated us well.

In late Spring of 1996, BA had a contest for us, not saying the specifics of it, about excellence in customer service. Because I had so many letters of gratitude from customers, I decided to enter. So I sent about a dozen letters in. And didn’t think anymore about it.

What I won, when I found out, a few weeks later, was a trip to London. Okay, that’s AWESOME.Because at that time, other than being in every state you could drive through between Minnesota, out east to New Jersey, as well as flying to New York, a couple of times and one trip to Florida, when I was 15, I had NEVER been out of the country.

However, this was to be in a video for training purposes. At that time, that was a little less awesome, if I’m going be honest, as this was 5 1 /2 years before I had my gastric bypass and I wasn’t happy with my weight. And I certainly didn’t love being photographed, let alone the thought of being in a video that many people would see. But to get paid to go to London, as a 26 year old single mother??? I’m not going to decline it.

We were to leave less than two weeks from the time we were notified. Because there was a government shut down at the time, we had to get our passports the day we departed.

Okay.. Enough back story… Here we go…..

***Thursday/June 6th, 1996***

It’s early morning and I leave my apartment dressed in business attire, to drive and park at the airport parking lot of Minneapolis/St.Paul International. Both British Airways and CMG were picking up all the expenses related to the trip and I had dropped Zachary off at my parents, the night before. He was 3 1/2 years old at the time, and I had not yet been away from him any longer than 24 hours.

My co-worker who also won, met me at the airport and we flew together from Minneapolis to O’Hare on Northwest. I can’t remember all of the terminals, now, other than British Airways was in terminal 5, and Northwest’s terminal didn’t have lockers, so we had to go to I think terminal 3, to drop our luggage off and then took a cab to the Kluczynski Federal Building.

We arrive and because this was post OKC bombing, security was tight. And when make it to the same day passport office, it seemed like there a bazillion other people in line waiting to be taken care of.

We get helped and then are told to come back after lunch, to pick up our passports. So my co-worker and I go to a really cool bar and grill, and the television is on, specifically the news. It’s showing Princess Diana, not terribly far from us, as she was in town for breast cancer awareness.

So not only am I going to London and getting paid for it, but I manage to be in Chicago at the same time as Princess Diana was !!! This is getting more awesome by the minute.

So we get done with lunch and then things get a little nerve wracking. Our passports are taking forever, by the time we get them, we quickly grab a cab to get back to O’Hare, there is so much traffic on Edens Expressway, as well as our moronic cabdriver had to stop and get gas that we are risk of missing our flight.

By the time we get to terminal “whatever” to pick up our luggage, get to terminal 5, we have a little over an hour before a flight is to depart and as we check in, they are already starting to board. Because we were on business for BA, we were flying Club World, which just had been renovated, as BA did a rebranding of sorts, in 1996. It’s beautiful and the seats are HUGE.

I get seated away from co-worker, who was kind of on the annoying side, thank goodness and am in awe of where I am. That soon changes when a flight attendant who knew me by name, approached me. “Miss Kasen, I have something for you. You left your return ticket on your flight into Chicago, so we called your employer and here you go”. I thank her, but now I am still an awe, but feeling like the biggest IDIOT, in the whole world.

Shortly after, as I had the window seat, the passenger next to me, gets seated. He’s a nice older British gentleman, and while were getting acquainted, he gasps, pointing out, “Look, there’s Princess Diana!!!”.

So now I’m doubly in awe, still kind of feeling like an idiot, though, as not only am in Chicago at the same time as Princess Di, I’m actually at the same airport.

FIVE minutes later she boards the plane. I can’t remember what the plane was, I think it was 767, not sure. I know the makeup of the plane was cockpit, First, Club World, galley, where we boarded, another Club World and then Economy. However because I was in the back row of Club World, in front of the galley, I was the very FIRST passenger she saw and she made eye contact with.

OH MY GOD!!! I HAVE NOW SEEN PRINCESS DIANA WITH MY VERY OWN EYES AND HAVE MADE EYE CONTACT AND I LOOK LIKE A WHITE PURPLE SPOTTED COW!!!
(the outfit I was wearing was LITERALLY big blobs of purple and white pantsuit that like cost me a day’s pay, at Catherine’s that I got a few days before the trip)

As gorgeous as she ever was in photographs, she’s just as, if not more so, stunning in person. She’s traveling with a body double who’s dressed identical to her. And with a fairly large entourage who was seated in my section of Club World. We are offered a glass of champagne, once they are all seated (which I declined).

As the flight starts to depart, there’s a lot of fanfare so to speak. There’s a ton of security and as well as the press on the ground. In my case, I had a slight fear of flying, but thought that this flight with Princess Diana on it, would have to be probably one of the safest flights in the world.

There was some unspoken agreement that no passenger would speak to her. She did come back to my section of Club World, to speak with people who she was traveling with (I did check the flight manifest, when I got back to work, as I had access and she was in First, basically by herself and one other couple).

We had like a 5 course dinner. As well as for First and Club World (sorry, I should probably reiterate, BA called First Class, just First, Club World was business class and I forgot the catchy name for economy, at the time) had access to “raid the larder” which was set up in the galley behind me, which was a buffet, in case one got hungry.

I was too excited to eat anything more than dinner. Not to mention, that nice British chap, seated next to me, pretty much fell asleep from the time the flight departed, until we arrived early Friday morning in London. Because the seats extended out, it was hard to leave mine, without disturbing him. I think I went to the bathroom only once, right before we arrived, to freshen up. I was too busy Princess Diana watching, the whole entire night.

Our flight arrived like 40 minutes ahead of schedule. They were brilliant in the fact that Princess Diana and her entourage, were not only the last to board, but they were the last to exit the plane. So everyone then, knew she was on our flight. I smiled in awe at her, one last time, when exiting the plane and got fast tracked through customs. Got my luggage in amazingly short time.Then shortly after that, took a shuttle to Forte Crest which was the hotel I was staying near Heathrow.

Well now, I realize, I’m talking more about the trip, then just my flight, exactly 20 years ago, feel free not to finish reading or take your chances, as it is an interesting story.

That’s actually true and not fictional, which I can’t get over, to this very day!!!

This is the awesome thing that I didn’t know as this was my first (and ONLY) business trip. When you get into town, you can check in immediately. We were only scheduled to work for 4 hours, the next day, in the afternoon to film the video. However, while it was 7 a.m when I was checking into my hotel in London, it was only 1 a.m in Minneapolis, so I had like 6 hours to kill before I could call ALMOST EVERYBODY, but especially my Mom and Dad, to tell them about my absolutely AMAZING flight to London, with Princess Diana being on my flight!!!

I take a shower once I get to the hotel, change into more casual clothes and decide to go exploring London. Which I don’t find out, until I’m there, is about 30 miles away from Heathrow, which I go through to get there. I get to central London and take a double decker bus. London is extraordinarily beautiful. I have some extra money, as my parents gave me $400, that I could go to Paris, if I wanted, or to have some extra money, as some things couldn’t get expensed, until I returned.As Sunday would also be a day that I could do what I want, I was only working that Saturday afternoon, so I had planned on going to Paris on Sunday.

I get back to my hotel at 3 p.m. on Friday (6-7-96). I decide to call my Dad at work (he had his own business, that I would occasionally and my sisters worked for him, in transportation and my Mom was with Zachary) tell him about my trip so far and was happy that Zachary was doing great.

After calling my best friend at the time, to tell her, then I decide to get room service for an early dinner and they would say in the U.K, I was all knackered out. I fell asleep for like the next 10 hours, but woke up in plenty of time, to make sure I was ready, when getting picked up by someone who was employed at British Airways, to take us to the venue, outside of London, to film the video.

Other than remember some famous guy from the BBC, who was cute, I don’t remember that much about making the video (and I couldn’t bear to see it, truthfully, when it was released) . I remember after we were done, as there was 3 of us (they also had a  male customer service representative from Florida, where they subcontracted their South American Frequent Traveller Programme), my co-worker in addition to appallingly badmouthing CMG, made arrangements to meet the grandaughter of a customer from Liverpool at our hotel. I explored Central London with the cute guy from Florida, such as Buckingham Palace, Hyde Park, Hard Rock Cafe, but we ate at back at the Forte Crest for dinner on Saturday night. As long as we ate at the hotel, it would be automatically paid for by British Airways, if I ate outside of it , I’d have to expense it back to CMG, when I came back.

It bears mentioning that the weekend I was in London was during the Euro 1996. So London was super busy . And because of that, the concierge at my hotel, couldn’t book a professional guided sight seeing day trip to Paris. So I ended up taking the Eurostar (the “chunnel”) the next day to Paris, which was about a 3 1/2 hours trip.

While I was seated next to a guy from Turkey on my way to Paris, who was awesome, the English Countryside was awesome, going under the English Channel was awesome, but I was kind of tired. And I really missed Zachary.

Also I didn’t get into Paris, until like 3 p.m. On a Sunday. And they aren’t kidding when they say Parisians for the most part, don’t like “tres grosse Americanes”. It was uncomfortable. So yeah I got to see with my own eyes, Place du Concorde, the Eiffel Tower, Arc De Triomphe and Versailles (well their exteriors, didn’t have the time or patience to actually go in them)  with my own eyes, I was tired. And I was kind of upset with attitude, so  much other than buying a ticket to SEE Paris, didn’t spend one single franc IN Paris.  I remember fighting with my very french cab driver because my French wasn’t so good. I thought it was fascinating though on my way back to Gard du Nord, that I saw a prostitute fighting with someone in the middle of the street and that Paris, like London, has no windows screens. Even though they do have bugs, there.

I actually returned early to London. I spent twice as long as getting to and from Paris, as I did in it. Ate something one I got back to my hotel, late that night, and had to get ready for an early flight departing out of Gatwick to Pittsburgh, early Monday morning.

My co-worker, who was starting to make me feel like a very annoyed genius, had a great idea of eating breakfast at the hotel to save money. There’s construction at Gatwick, and by the time we go to check in, we miss the chance to board. And while the check in lady, at British Airways at Gatwick was lovely, it was embarrassing as my co-worker was quite abrasive to her, which made us look even more unprofessional.

We get re-booked, luckily on a flight the same day, but departing Heathrow to O’Hare instead, still in Club World, which I was shocked because if I was that agent, I would’ve put us in Economy, if not the baggage compartment.

So we get to Heathrow and check in. When we go through security, my co-worker thinks it’s hilarious to tell the nice handsome male security guard that I have a bomb in my bag, in country that’s prone to a lot of terrorists attacks. So that requires him pulling us both out of queue, him getting female security guard to search me and my possessions. I then kind of lose it with my co-worker and tell him he’s a “%$#( idiot”, which the guard reiterates sternly to him, and we’re lucky we didn’t get in anymore trouble than that.

By the time we get back to Minneapolis, it’s mid Monday evening. I miss my son terribly. I get in my car, which I actually kiss the driver side of the door (which had a lipstick stain that couldn’t  be removed) as between planes, cabs, shuttles and the Tube, I never want to take any form of public transportation again and go to my Mom and Dad’s house and get my son, who I’m ecstatic to be back with and we go home.

I understand this was way more than just talking about that time I went to London, as a 26 year old single mother of 1, exactly 20 years ago.

When people ask me though, what’s the best things/most exciting things that’s ever happened to me, if I would name the top 3 things, it goes like this. My children are tied for #1. My flight to London with Princess Diana on the same plane is #2. I’d be lying if I didn’t cop to what I thought 10 years ago, in Summer of 2006, where I had  by  then, Zoe and Zach, was thin and fit and even though I was so horribly sick, I still had  hope that things would get better as being #3. And I’d launch a successful business, and be able to do what I wanted for work as well as provide nicely for my children, who were and still are, of course the loves of my life.

Not sorry for feeling like  a 6 hour flight with Princess Diana beating out 6  1/2  years of being thin. But not going to lie and say that there wasn’t some good things about being thin, either. After being bullied for being heavy all my life.

More people can say they lost weight  than can say they shared a flight with Princess Diana or seen her in person. I was devastated when she died 14 months later. But understood as I saw the intense press scrutiny, at least a little bit, with my very own eyes.

So what I’ve been up to lately (not much) and why I’m so stuck in the past, whether it be 20 years ago or 10 years ago,  still will be again  discussed in future blogs.

Sorry this was so terribly wordy…..And I apologize to those who may be triggered my weight talk.

p.s. I forgot to add that I talked to quite a few celebrities when I worked on BA at CMG. Miss Joan Collins, being one of them. Let’s just say she wasn’t acting in Dynasty, she’s quite the witch….

p.s.s. If the title alone of the  blog threw you, BA 296 is British Airways flight from Chicago O’hare (airport code “ORD”) to London Heathrow (airport code “LHR”)..

p.s.s.s. It probably will also be shocking that because we dealed with the elite, I could politely hold my own with customer’s who while rich or better yet rich and famous, would make one miserable if they thought their frequent flyer account was off by 1,000 miles. I read the Wall Street Journal.  I knew almost every airport code, globally, made myself familiar with almost everything international and had memorized the frequent flyer programs of BA’s Top THIRTY competitors. I could politely say to the  CFO at Goldman Sachs that it was just the same for an upgrade from Club to First on Emirates from London to Dubai, like it was on British Airways. And this was before I had my own personal computer at home, to study, anything. We had no such thing as intranet, like I did at UHG.

As always, same rules apply, comments that are triggering to others, and me included, as it took a lot of effort, to write this, will NOT be approved. Thanks!!!

(Extremely important disclaimer: I’m NOT  a clinically trained professional. If you or someone you know is in acute medical or mental health crisis, PLEASE seek immediate/acute professional help, in an acute care facility.

Because this blog is about the fact that clinicians are only human and can be in crisis, too, this is WHY I’m pressing for honest dialogue in our society about the Opiate Epidemic and removing the stigma that exists that presents a barrier for so many people being able to get the help they need that hopefully, save their lives)

http://www.cnn.com/2017/5/24/us/drug-counselors-overdose/index.html

Most of my blogs, as of late, have had to do with the opioid epidemic. Some of the blogs, have been out of concern of the war on drugs, having a potential to harm those who use prescription opiates, responsibly, but as a last resort to treating severe chronic pain.

Some of them have included though, the very real crisis that we are in because of opioids both prescription and illegal opiates.

My very last blog (which was extremely wordy, even for me) , had to do with my getting labeled at a an appointment with a pain management specialist, who had labeled me, due to my mental health issues and that I had very temporarily abused opiates, both almost 9 years ago (for 5 days leading up to an intentional overdose with pain meds that had been prescribed for me) and almost 7 years ago for 2 days both situations involved both being in medical AND mental health crisis.

And I’ve discussed those issues ad nauseum, in previous blogs, quite a bit, since I’ve launched this blog, almost 4 years ago.

I also had mentioned in my last blog, that I had done an internet search on that physician, prior to that appointment almost 2 weeks ago and had found that pain management specialist I had seen, in addition to being “pro Butrans”, which I didn’t think was appropriate for me, neither did she, also had nearly had her own medical license suspended due to opioid addiction, less than 2 years ago. And had multiple conditions to be able to continue having her suspsension stayed, by not being able to prescribe controlled substances, let alone be in possession of them.

It was never my intent in my last blog to shame that provider. What I did find offensive, is my history being a barrier in my getting medical care, with bias, because I had been labeled PRIOR to ever being on opiates and as someone who has a very short history that I’m not usually believed by most providers, with temporary drug abuse, just because I have mental health issues and even BEFORE my mental health issues were diagnosed in my late 30’s, just because I was a bariatric surgical patient.

The above link on my blog, that I just came across tonight, was about 2 drug counselors in a addiction facility who overdosed on heroin/fentanyl combination in Pennsylvania on Monday.

I have never not known or acknowledged that the Opioid Epidemic, not only is a VERY real crisis, not just nationally but globally, but that clinically trained medical and mental health professionals, whether they are physicians, drug counselors or any kind of practicing clinician, also can be patients with the propensity to have serious addiction problems that can be fatal, just like to any other human being.

Also, I’ve said as a mental health activist who’s also written multiple blogs about murder/suicide, what I talk about is, NOT the means of how people choose to kill themselves and MURDER others , but the desire to kill to begin with.

It’s not to minimize when I bring up gun control initiatives when talking about that. I say, with being crystal clear, that I’m not a medically or mental health clinically trained professional and/or in public safety or law enforcement professional, that taking away the weapon of choice, isn’t getting to the heart of the matter, when it comes to these tragic deaths.

That if people want to kill, if they can’t get a gun, there are many other ways that they can and WILL find to kill people.

The same applies to drugs, when it comes to addiction. If people even start out honestly because of severe chronic pain or any kind of severe pain, such as surgical or due to an accident  and whether or not,  it becomes their gateway to drug addiction and/or they just go straight to illegal drugs for emotional and or mental health health pain and find a dealer, unfortunately, it’s not always predictable who will find themselves in crisis of life ruining, if not life ending consequences due to that addiction.

Or ANY type of addiction and that’s one of the  the points of this blog. If we can’t talk about the multiple ways and multi-faceted reasons that play into addiction, honestly without stigma, whether it be drugs, alcohol, tobacco, food, social media/internet/phone that present potential for abuse, addiction, the risk to public safety/personal health threats on humans and the fatalities that are occuring , we don’t have a prayer of reducing them.

It’s becoming obvious and it doesn’t take a clinically trained professional to state, that you can’t legistlate away addiction, it can make it only slightly harder to get drug of choice, it doesn’t take away the propensity for addiction, away.

Unfortunately, while it’s a lot easier to identify what barriers we are experiencing as a society when it comes to these threats, it’s a lot harder to find out what it’s going to take to make inroads in reducing addiction and both accidental and intentional overdoses.

But we  can’t just continue to believe it’s the epidemic itself, that’s killing so many people and/or ruining their lives.

Because the truth is, the STIGMA  and reluctance to have an open and honest dialogue is equally to blame.

This can’t continue to be a “don’t do drugs” or “ban all drugs” conversation, as prevention initiatives just aren’t working for so many. I’m in no way discounting them. They have value, it’s just not enough.

It has to become, why we are a globally, humans who can be prone to addictions of different natures that can be life ruining and life ending for almost anyone and everyone, which almost all of us, know someone who’s life has been ended too soon or ruined due to addiction, as well as loved ones who are effected by these crisies.

How many people are going to have to die, until the dialogues start and more initiatives are in place for study of, evaluation and better treatment options of disease of addiction themselves that don’t have the potential to lead to other addictions or other potential serious medical/mental health issues????

Note: I’m hoping this starts an honest dialogue to help. I always appreciate differing opinions if shared respectfully and responsibly.

Any comments that could be potentially triggering or are not constructive, will NOT published.

(Edit Note: Unfortunately, slight edits that were made before publishing didn’t take when blog was posted. It didn’t effect greatly my intention with this blog, just clarifying that I apologize that, it wasn’t as clear as intended it to be, from the start but also with the fact for new readers, I am a disabled blogger who writes about disabilities, in addition to topics like this one, that I feel passionately about)

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and I hoped that the next blog that I would write, would be in the realm of activism regarding mental health,  not talking about another devastating encounter with a new physician.

I admit that I  not an easy patient to treat. As I’ve said in previous blogs that my disabilities make it hard to express myself in logical sequence of order and in complete thought processes, which can make me difficult to understand.

It’s compounded a bazillion times, between anxiety, due to the fact I do have mental health issues, I have temporarily abused drugs, twice, in my life, that I’m quite forthcoming in this blog about that and the labeling I’ve experienced.

I had seen my long term PCP 2 weeks ago. Because we were at an impasse with my medication management, I had agreed to see a pain management specialist to give insight to the both of us, of what would be the best course of action.

As my physician didn’t feel comfortable increasing my dosages and I metabolize meds or have bad side effects to so many medications.

Or they just don’t work at all.

I was able to get into pain management today. I had anxiety of course, which I explained and it was hard for me to be concise.

While the pain management specialist was forthcoming about that she didn’t necessarily agree with my medication regimen, she didn’t agree or understand that after all the doctor visits I’ve had in my life, in the last 10 years between mental health and my gastric bypass complications, that I at this point didn’t want to see a bunch of doctors again and because of the severity of side effects from so many drugs, I didn’t want to try any new medications.

Nor did I want to be taken off the medications that I was currently on.

It was a long intake appointment with the understanding that while she didn’t agree with my being on opiates, that she’d leave that up to my long term PCP and she said, very clearly, that  she wouldn’t interfere with that.

So I did shoot off my prescribing physician, a few hours after I got home, a message of what transpired in my visit with her, while it was fresh in my mind, as I knew that it wasn’t a stellar visit for either one of us.  I detailed what she agreed with my physician, and of her urging me to be under the care of clinical mental health professionals and follow pain management modalities .

Unfortunately for me, I took her at her word that she said she would NOT interfere with my doctor continuing on my current medication regimen. That she appreciated as a pain management specialist, that I am concerned between having mental health issues, that I don’t want to have addiction issues and I would rather not be medicated at all for pain then risk addiction and becoming either a prescription drug addict or trying street drugs, something I’ve never done.

I try to treat myself, from a patient perspective, because I have an addictive personality and mental illness, of knowing that could be the case and it’s a mixed blessing that opiates don’t work as well as they should, because if they did, my circumstances could be a whole different story, and I’d have full blown addiction issues, which I don’t, but it’s nothing short of a miracle that I don’t.

Things that I’m completely honest about. Among other humiliating things in my life.

So imagine my surprise, after shooting my long term physician,  a recap of my visit, tonight, then deciding to check out my after visit summary from my appointment this afternoon, that not only did she think I was somewhat a mentally unstable non compliant  hypochondriac but that she was recommending I get taken off my medications.

Which is a complete contradiction and LIE, from with her at the end of my appointment clearly telling me that she would not interfere with my medication management being done by my long term provider.

Unfortunately for me, it’s my word against hers, a physician.

I’ve had doctors tell me, straight out,that they think I’m a drug addict. I’ve had ER docs when I’d be in the ER for my gastric bypass complications, at Fairview University Medical Center,  even bringing my meds and being compliant with controlled substances, having a ton of them, in their bottles, of them thinking I was drug seeking, when I wasn’t looking for drugs, but diagnostics such as with the pesky intractable projecile vomiting blood due to my ulcers both prior to gastric bypass reversal and after it.

Just based upon the fact I was a bariatric patient with my one and only suicide attempt, trying to use controlled substances to intentionally overdose, that’s explained on my 1st blog on here, in greater detail .

As well as being honest about an inability to be compliant on non controlled substances like ibuprofen (which I didn’t take much of prior to my gastric bypass reversal or of meds like Imitrex, PPIs, and meds in other therapy classes, other than controlled subtances, because I metabolize medications so bizarrely).

Which I’ve been quite forthcoming with providers as well on this blog. There are shades of grey, with patients’s prescription drug use. I’m obviously not compliant with most meds, it’s impossible to be, because my tolerance to so many meds, in so many therapy classes, not just with narcotics, is so high. But I by no means habitually abuse controlled substances, something that she said herself and somewhat congratulated me for, towards the end of my appointment.

Both unfortunately for me and HER, the pain management specialist I saw today,  I did do a Google search before my appointment, to get an idea of her medication philosophies (usually pro Butrans, something she thought I should consider, but apprently not, given her recommendation to my long term provider).

I also found that she nearly had her OWN license suspended due to drugs. Almost 2 years ago and the conditions of her “stay of suspension”, so that she could keep practicing medicine. Her conditions of being able to retain her license, which she is now under, is the fact she can’t be in possession or write a script for controlled substances for 5 years, in addition to other requirements for her to retain her  license and/or be eligible to apply for losing those conditions.

I don’t take any satisfaction in that. Both as a patient and as an advocate who’s trying to de-stigmatize and create dialogue about drug addiction amongst both providers and patients.

As well as in doing all the research I had to do past blogs, as a medical activist, as well as make an informed decision about my medication management I’ve thought about discussing physicians who struggle with drug addiction and trying to de-stigmatize that, too.

Because I fully am aware and sensitive to the fact, that physicians are patients, too.

It’s absolutely  NOT  okay, what I was put through today by her. It’s now going into a weekend.  I can’t talk about this to my own provider, until early next week. I did write a scathing message to the pain management specialist about her lie, and I am now  going to  be filing a grievance against her with the hospital system. And also against the hospital system, themselves.

Which I’ve talked about “md-ptsd” and I have filed one grievance before, with that hospital, which is in another blog.

I’m just beyond stunned, of  the hypocrisy that the hospital has, as well as that provider. They have a a more stringent standard of expectations on their patients, that they don’t even have for their OWN physicians. As it’s a travesty that my suicide attempt and being mentally ill, that history is held against me, apparently for the rest of my life by any provider, but her own isn’t?

How is that ethically fair? To not only as me, as a patient but any other patient who is seeing this physician, have any chance to be treated ethically and honestly, as she has bias, in addition to her own mental health issues and addiction issues  that create an inability for her to be effective of in providing fair  care to her patients.

Especially, especially, ESPECIALLY given the specialty she’s treating patients….

Lisa definition of “md-ptsd” (a “Lisaism” you won’t find in DSM V) – extreme psychological and physical distress of seeing clinically trained medical and mental health physicians, due to my being labeled as drug seeking hypochondriac, post epic mental health breakdown and suicide attempt in 2008. But I have also mentioned that I was drug tested prior to being put on opiates, during ER visits, since I had my gastric bypass.

So now, it’s made my “md-ptsd” expotentially  worse. I don’t love when doctors treat me like crap. That’s why I rarely seek medical attention, any longer. What I usually did in the past with unpleasant encounters when I’m being treated clearly with bias, due to having mental health issues, is I leave. I’ve left ER visits, including ones that I needed further attention. I’ve left appointments in the middle of a visit. I can be mean and not mince words, when doctors treat me like an unstable drug seeking hypochondriac, but I only use words and leave, if I’m going to be reactive (which most of the time, I’m NOT) . That’s it.

You want an example of that? Certainly. I’ll say to a doctor when they come off condescencingly and judgemental that I’m a mentally unstable and drug seeking hypochondriac with maybe other bias towards me (such as weight and being a cigarette smoker) that I’ll say “Wow, I didn’t know Walmart had a school of medicine!!!”.

I’m appalled and devastated, though that a pain management specialist with her own drug problems would do that to a patient who admitted everything I’ve said in this and in past blogs, would lack empathy and lie to me.

I’m devastated that I can’t trust most  doctors not to label me for the rest of my life, given my complicated issues with compliance of non controlled substances due to how bizarrely I metabolize most medication or have severe side effects.

I’m incensed as an activist that other patients might have gone through this and they don’t have a voice. I know almost 9 years ago, when I was acutely suicidal and in so much physical pain and had mentally disintergrated, that  I didn’t have a voice and no support. I write this blog, so that other patients don’t nearly lose their lives from being treated this way or have themselves AND their care compromised due to bias.

I’m hoping that if anyone has gone through this, they will message me privately, if they don’t feel comfortable commenting on my blog.

But I am going to fight back, an ethical fight. By filing a grievance and while I said in my very concise message to her that I hope she loses her license, I hope really she learns from this and at least gets reprimanded.

Although if she doesn’t learn from what she did to me today and has done that to other patients, maybe she should NOT be practicing medicine, any longer.

Because no mentally ill and medically disabled patient who’s been as forthcoming with providers, should have to go through what I keep going through with most physicians.

Actually, it’s been my hope as an activist and blogger, for years,  to encourage honest dialogue between patients and providers, whether mental illness is a factor or NOT, that patients aren’t necessarily penalized with non compliance of ANY medication.

Not only does that increase the risk of patients LYING to their doctors, if they are abusing drugs, it puts them at risk of getting involved with street drugs and the risk of safety and or accidental overdose and addiction to them.

And I didn’t fight so hard to stay alive and try to retain what’s left of my sanity, to let a doctor do something so unconscionable like what was done to me, today (It’s still  5-12-2017 in MN), but I’m going to try that some greater good comes out of it.

For both patients AND providers.

Not just for myself, but for many patients who experience bias and compromised medical and mental health care because of bias that physicians carry due to mental illness and other still stigmatized patient disorders.

Wish me luck…

Note: I have no problem publishing differences of opinions, if stated respectfully. And unfortunately my normal disclaimer of “seeking professional clinical trained professional guidance when in medical or mental health crisis”  doesn’t apply, because I’m not at that point but I’m seriously distressed that my anxiety is in overdrive and my medical care has been compromised by a doctor that knew fully my history and lied to me that way.

Especially given how vulnerable I was due to my medical health issues at that appointment and my mental health issues, as it was difficult for me to get to that appointment with my barriers, as I was exhausted physically and mentally frazzled due to some scary encounters on 2 crappy local buses and walking part of the way in the sun, which I have photophobia.

Again, I own what’s multiply frustrating by me, for ANY provider, including the most non biased clinical professional, of what it’s like to treat me. I’m not a fun patient to treat and I can get defensive. I’m wordy and all over the place. But I tell new providers that those are my barriers, from the start.

And the truth is, most patients are vulnerable, in some way, when seeing a provider, especially given all the factors that played in my visit.

Also,  I don’t believe all doctors are bad. Largely due to my long term physician, where we have a stance to agree to respectfully disagree, given what I’ve been through with mental health and having weight issues even with my needing a gastric bypass reversal.

And I realize other Fairview medical professionals who I know are excellent and ethical physicians, as well as other physicians from different hospital systems both locally and globally.

But regardless of a terrible experience with a doctor, I’m going to ALWAYS recommend that if a patient-provider relationship is not working for a patient, that they try to get help from another provider, whether in acute crisis or not.

Just please forgive me for being kind of a hypocrite about not being too terribly excited about seeing new doctors, in the short term, given my circumstances.

Also note: Unfortunately, I had to do some major editing, 10 hours after I first published  this, because I was so frazzled between being in a lot of physical pain and heightened anxiety, which was was made so much worse, after her saying one thing to me and a few hours later, she completely saying another, as far as her final recommendation would be, made this not as clear as I would’ve liked.

This still isn’t clear, due to the fact I am a disabled blogger who writes about disability and bias. But I feel like I’ve honestly and better presented a fair description of what I go through as patient, but at the same time, being fair with providers who have to treat me.

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