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Lexie Kulak

Lexie Kulak

Sunday, 14 December 2014 21:15

The Roller Coaster that was 2014

It's time for the annual year in review! The theme of the year is quality not quantity as not much happened but when something did it was a huge event! Enjoy.


January- Started the month by telling my parents I was in a long distance relationship and was making the trip out to meet him. This did not go over well and as a result I spent most of the month feeling quite unwell. It was also my birthday so I treated myself to a massage. It was wonderful.

February- Made the trip out to meet my bf for the first time. It was a good trip, but I do wish I had let him come to me first as what they say about guys getting bored is completely true! Oh well c'est la vie. At least I had a good time while I was there.

March-April- Pretty uneventful as I had missed a lot of job hunting due to being unwell and then going away so I went back in full force these 2 months.

May- My compensation form getting laid off came to end which made my financial outlook pretty bleak. Started not spending and went nuts with job hunting. I also joined a fitness studio this month. I still go there!

June- Job hunting interviews etc etc

July- My Grandma on my Dad's side turned 80. She lives in a different province so my dad and I went on a road trip up there. It was fun. After I got home My uncle who had been sick for the las year took a turn for the worse. Then my bf broke up with me. My uncle passed away a day later. Grieving 1 loss is horrible. Greiving 2 losses at once is just awful. I've done it twice now. The worst part was that my ex bf contantly repeated that one of the reasons he broke up with me was because I don't go to church. Because I don't go to church I do enjoy going to churches since it's always for an event. Plus they are nice buldings. This time not only was it a negative experince because it was a funeral, but I had been dumped for not going there so it was like putting salt in my wounds. I kep thinking "If I wore nice clothes and sang songs every Sunday I'd still only have the funeral to worry about but because I don't I have to deal with being dumped as well."

After the church part was over I quickly moved on because I had a nice visit with family. I even met one of my cousins that I had never met before.

August- Back to job hunting after a huge blip. Was getting quite depressed over everything.

September- After 21 interviews and lots of ups and downs I finally landed my dream job.

October- November- work, work and more work. Things got better and better.

December- Still working, took some vacation days which were wonderful. Had a work party last week. Today I'm off to a party with my therapy peeps. Next week is my family party. Life is good

 

Tuesday, 02 September 2014 23:21

A Big Regret

I have this huge regret that's been eating at me recently. Last year I opened my mouth at work and said that I was no longer happy with my hours. As a result I was given low seniority (unofficial because it's not really a big thing when there's only 4 employees) and I had my hours reduced to 5 a week. These 5 hours were also over 2 days. It's really not worth even making the effort to go to work for 2 hours! So since work wouldn't negotiate I made formal complaints to 3 different places. One ended up taking on the case because the issues were realated to anxiety and were  considered discrimination based on the law.

The people in my life at the time were very divided. Each person either gave me full support or none at all. My family came close to disowning me over it, but I felt it was right so I stuck with it.

Eventually my Boss and I talked and settled it ourselves. I got really good hours (in fact they were the best hours I had since working there) and I also got a financial settlement. When I dropeed the case once again some people were angry at me for doing so and others were supportive, but once again, this was what was right for me!

A month later I was laid off. his is where the regret is. I do not regret standing up for myself, I do not regret the formal complaints I made and I was happy with the end result, but honestly if I had known that my time was limited I would have just kept my original hours (not the reduced ones the ones before that) and dealt with it. Before anyone jumpes to any conclusions know that the complaint process takes about 6 months. The whole time it is extremely stressful and amkes things very awkward around the workplace. If you are going to get somehting out of it ti's worth it, but the thing is I don't think the 3 weeks of good was worth the stress.

I knew that the company was struggling, but because of my senior position I should have been last. It was because of the this whole mess that I was gone first. If I knew I was just going to be laid off I never would have put up a fight.

After the informal settlement I felt like my relationship with at least one boss improved (the other wasn't speaking to me) so I hope they don't think bad of me for it and I really hope that it's not what's preventing me from finding a job.

I hope they realize that the only reason I did it was because I was expecting to be around long term. I hope they don't see me as the "one who makes complaints".  like to think that I handled the whoe thing as professionally as possible, but I still live with that regret every single day.

 

Monday, 01 September 2014 00:59

The Beginning

Back when I was planning my 11th birthday party I became quite depressed after realizing that there were only 2 people that I would consider inviting to a party. My mom suggested I invite this one girl since she was friends with one of my friends, but didn't really have any close friends of her own. I decided to take the risk and invite  her. It ended up being one of the best decisions I had made. Fast forward to about a year and a half later. We were stil best friends and I was invited to her birthday party. It was fun, we went swimming and then back to her house for pizza and cake.

The next week at school my mutual friend mentioned to me that this girl who I had befriended was now done with being friends with me. My group of friends and I all extried to get an explanation (she had abandoned a group of us). We never got one as a result I was always feeling like I needed an explanation in order to move on or get closure. I was hurt, but I already had low self-esteem so I almost expected to be abandoned in this way. A week afer being "let go" as a friend I became very ill to the point where I was sure I was going to die. I was 12 years old at the time. It has now been 12 years and i now know I'm not going to die because it's jsut anxiety,  I have things more under control, but I still suffer.

I have also since learned that th reason this girl had abandoned us was because our group was not exactly high in popularity. At the time it didnt' matter much, but we were going on to high school the year after and she wanted a year to prepare by getting in with the cool kids.

I don't blame her for causing my anxiety to flare up because it would have been triggered eventually and there were other sources of stress, but this one incident really shaped me. Every time I go through a breakup whether it's friends or romantic, I always have flashbacks to that time.

 

PS If any of my words/ sentences seem scrambled it's because my keyboard jumps. I have a touch pad lock which has solved that, but ASN diaries are the only thing where it doesn't work!

Saturday, 16 August 2014 00:02

My Head Is gonna Explode!

Why would you say you liked talking to someone and then turn around and say you didn't?

Why Would you say someone is awesome and then turn around and say they were annoying?

Why would you accept someone for who they are and then turn around and say u really never accepted them once you got to know them?

Why would you preach openness and communication and then not try to communicate with me?

Why would you say you'd never hurt me and then hurt me more than anyone ever has?

I am human. I'm not a mind reader. So how was I expected to know an of this when I was told the exact opposite?

Why would you tell the truth when In this case the truth should have been kept to yourself?

Why would anyone put even their worst enemy through this?

Wednesday, 16 July 2014 20:36

What Anxiety is and Isn't

As many of you know I studied mental illness in school "before" I became a sufferer (I was actually suffering the whole time I just wasn't aware that I was and was also not diagnosed yet). It hascome to my attention that people really do not understand what anxiety is. Even sufferers may mistake some "normal" stress with anxiety.

Another thing that throws a lot of people off is that a lot of medical conditions, especially addictions can cause anxiety temporarily; however, this is not an axiety disorder and can usually be treated by medication alone (anxiety disorders can't).

If you used to have it, but it's completely gone, you don't have anxiety. If it was easy to get rid of you never' had anxiety. If you were able to get rid of it wihtout putting your life on hold, you never had it. If it's rational it's not anxiety. If it's black and white it's not anxiety. If you tell another sufferer to "get over it" you never went through it (and should be ashamed of yourself so being so judgemental). If your life doesn't revolve around it, it's not anxiety. If it hasn't ruined even a small part of your life, it's not anxiety. If you are able to take big steps to overcome it, its not anxiety. When taking steps to overcome it, if pushing yourself too far doesn't make you have to go back to square one, it's not anxiety.
If it bothers you, but you are able to ignore it (without treatment) it's not anxiety.

If you are supporting someone with anxiety listen to that person. If they say they aren't ready for something then they aren't ready. Taking steps that someone isn't ready for can undo all progress a person has made.The exception is with a licensed professional as those people are able to break things down into even smaller steps if needed. Even the professionals will once in a while push someone too far and have to start over. Also if you think this is frustrating, trust me it's 1 billion times more frustrating for the person who is suffering. You have to be VERY patient if you are going to help someone. Also if the person says they have made progress believe them! It may not look like they have come far to you, but telling them that they need to move faster can actually cause them to freeze up and have to restart. Never tell them they complain too much without taking steps (most people move backwards quite a few times before they get anywehere so once again PATIENCE is the key). This process is also SLOW! So slow that too an outsider it is going to look like nothing is happening.

People with anxiety are mostly able to function. They revolve there lives arund their anxiety and know how to avoid triggers. They are not a time bomb that could freak out at any minute, if that happens it's because something triggered them. Also there are types of anxiety. Just because someone has one type, does not mean that everything tha can cause anxiety is going to. Fore example,there are people out there who have a phobia of cotton balls. I personally do nto understand this one bit. Cotton balls are soft and poofy and I find them pleasant. If I met someone with this phobia they would think I was the crazy one. Cotton balls are the worst thing on earth for them. As much as I don't udnerstand this, I'm scared of vomit, so who am I to judge?

Hopefully you found this helpful. If you know someone who suffers from anxiety go out now and give them a big hug! Honestly, that's really  all they want. You don't have to understand, and there's really nothing you can do other than be patient

On another note I just remembered one thing. When I was growing up I loved the tv show Arthur. There is one episode in which everybody is going to a waterpark. The kid who is only known as "Brain" (although his name is Allen but tha'ts not important) comes up with an excuse not to go. The rest of this kids remember other times such as when they were bobbing for apples, that hehad an excuse not to participate. Everyone starts calling him a snob and stop talking to him. Arthur who is extremely kind, caring and intelligent (most adults would never be able to do this) takes a look at all the times Brain has made an excuse not to participate in an activity and connects the dots. He then figures out that Brain is not coing up with exuses because he is a snob, but because he's afraid of water. I always wished I had people in my life who were this sensitive to my quirks, but sadly this would only happen in tv.

Monday, 14 July 2014 22:13

Love

I loved him, he loved me. We were meant to be. He said he'd be there forever. As things moved forward my love grew stronge, I thought his did too. Then I started to notice that he was losing interest. I chose to tell myself it was all in my head. I kept expressing my love in every way I knew how. Sometmes I'd get it in return, but it became less and less sincere as th days went on. I decided to keep an optimistic outlook because I'm usually wrong about these things.

I would give anything to be wrong. These not so subtle hints were not in my head.How long would this have gone on had I decided to keep telling myself I was wrong? Havng the love of my life look me in the eyes and tell me he hasn't loved me for a while was probably one of the most painful experiences I have been put through. He told me I did nothing wrong. The only 2 reasons he would give me were both very weak. I'm guessing those were just attempts at a explanation. I guess he's jsut as confused as me.

I love him. He used to love me.

Thursday, 12 June 2014 03:42

An Apology To Those In My Past

I recently came to the realization that I have hurt many people. The worst part is, I had no intention of hurting anyone. On top of that, a lot of these people weren't willing to try to take it up with me, or work it out. They simply walked out of my life and continue to make things awkward.To all of those people, I'm sorry that I hurt you. I never intended to do that and hae only realized the extent that I do it. As I already said, I'm not a mean person. I wouldn't even wish harm on my worst enemy. I really don't get angry very often and I have never been one to hold a grudge. The two reasons that I hurt people are anxiety and misunderstanding.


We'll start with misundertanding since that one is simple. I say things and people interpret them wrong. I can be sarcastic or I say things that I think are funny but other people don't. Quite often when I am able to get an answer from someone as to where I went wrong they mention I comment or joke I made. I then apologize and try to explain that it was a joke. I then get told that I need to stop making excuses and the person then makes an exit from my life. The thing is that I often do this to people who are like this to me so I assume they can take it, but I am often wrong. In therapy I was taught the quote "I am responsible for what I say not what you understand". This quote basically means that I'm off the hook, but it doesn't make me feel any less guilty.


Anxiety is another reason why I hurt people. It's a huge reason. I know it's not an excuse, but I really do need people who are willing to be patient. Often times I say something that sounds like a complete insult or I sound angry or judgemental. 95% of the time this reaction means that my anxiety has been triggered and I need an escape. This usually has to do with my phobia, but ti can happen due to other insecurities. Unfortunately the need to escape that moment causes people to escape from me permently.

Once again I sincerely apologize to everyone and I hope to do better in the future.

Wednesday, 04 June 2014 07:49

My Realization

Today I was in my Tuesday morning zumba class and I had a realization. But first, I have to back up a bit so that this doesn't seem completely random. Back when I was a kid my hands and/ or feet were always moving. I liked to walk around and sometimes run and jump or skip when I was thinking. I had no problems sitting still or concentrating, just part of me would always be moving. I ended up being shamed for it by my family. My mom explained to me that it might seem harmless now, but it's a bad habit. Bad habits are hard to break. If I didn't break this one in time I was "at risk" of developing other addictions and habits when I got older. Note: I know this has no slogic behind it, but when ur a kid you basically look to your parents for all your information. So I believed it. Many people asked me why my hands would move all the time and I would immidately stop and say "I have a bad habbit. I need to stop it, but it's hard." When I got older I went for medical testing with no results. I was finally diagnosed with "a neurologic movement disorder" which in laymens terms means "we'll put a name to it, but really there's nothing wrong with ur kid". After that my mom was constantly warning people that I may no be the most graceful or or artiistic because of a "tremor in her hands but please do not draw attention to it". Over the years I got shamed so much that I developed a habit of sitting on my hads if they started moving and even to this day appear unnaturally stiff.

Fast forward to last year in group therapy. I was randomly talking about the fact that I had this undiagosed movement disorder which has always held me back. The psychiatrist immediately said "that's anxiety. The reason u were moving around so much was because u were so anxious. The shaming made it worse since that made you more anxious".

Here I was today moving all over a room in ways I had always been told not too and feeling amazing as a result. Exercise in general is a huge help for anxiety, but I think it helps me even more than the average person since I get permission to move. I get rid of a lot of nervous energy and function so much better in my every day life. Due to the whole "hand tremor" thing I was nervous last year about how antidepressants were going to affect that (this was before therapy). My sister takes a huge cocktail of drugs and one was lithium (which is known for casuing all kinds of movement issues). I noticed her hands got worse than mine ever were. This symptom is definatley something that's pretty manageable in the grand sceam of things so I quickly forgot about it and just started taking my meds. Last week I was sitting on the couch and was suddenly extremely curious to see what my hands are like these days since I've been on them for a year. Back in the days holding my hands out straight was always embarrassing  because they shook so much (hence my mom's hand tremor disclaimer). To my suprise they were completely still. I never thought I'd see the day where I'd be able to put my hands out and not look drunk. Even while writing this I took several breaks to put my hands out infront of me and watch them not move. It's just so weird that something that was a  "problem" for so long just disappeared.

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