Monday, January 28, 2008

Cells Have Internal Clocks

A study found that being a night owl or morning person is genetic. It seems that all the cells in our bodies have their own "clock". I wonder if this relates to insomnia.

Healthcare Insurance Update

I went to see my psychiatrist Dr R on Thursday and found out why I haven't heard back from GoldenRule. He wanted to talk to me before getting back to them. GoldenRule requested my COMPLETE files - my background information (where I was born, major events in my childhood, details about my family), details of dreams, and every other little detail that I've ever mentioned in a session. WTF?!?!?! This information is protected by patient-doctor confidentiality. Who the hell to they think they are that they can gather this information about to me. I'm not even applying for a plan that has a mental health benefit. Dr R isn't going to disclose my files. He's writing them a letter with my diagnosis and plan of treatment.

I don't think I'm going to be able to get private health care insurance. This sucks. I'm going to try one more company before I give up and get a job at Starbucks. Too bad I don't drink coffee.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Two of My New Favorite Books

This week I finished reading two great books.

The Brothers Karamazov did not disappoint my expectations of philosophical questioning and Russian novel drama. Although the main action surround the murder of the father, Fyodor Karamazov, (in case you were planning on reading this, I'm not giving anything away here. I think it might even mention the murder on the back cover), Dostoevsky goes into amazing depth into the characters thoughts and internal workings.

Even though the subject matter is dark, the book isn't a downer, and there was only one chapter that disturbed me - the one were Ivan and Alyosha sit down at a bar to get to know each other better. When talking about faith, Ivan poetically and graphically sites examples of suffering of children and asks why God would allow these types of things to happen. It's a great read. I want to go back and reread it now, because I'm sure I've missed many things.

The Knitter's Book of Yarn
OMG! I LOVE this book! After reading it I want to knit all day long and open a knitting/yarn store. Before if someone had asked me to explain exactly what yarn is I wouldn't have had a clue. It's wonderful to understand how the material and structure of the yarn affect the finished project. I now understand that I shouldn't have picked 100% cotton for my lace shawl (I will be unraveling that this weekend), and why the sweater I made for Skip 2 winters ago hangs unflattering (shouldn't have used such a heavy yarn with an intricate pattern).

I'm going through my whole stash and rethinking what to knit next. Knitty has some great patterns on their site in their Winter collection. I'm might also try to translate a Vasarely painting into knit. There is a Vasarely painting that has hung in the entryway of my Dad's house since I was very young. I can't find an image of it on Google. Strange, right? I might try that one... or maybe this one.

Friday, January 18, 2008

I'll take the high road and the low road

It's difficult for me to believe that I have been back in Dallas for a year this February. After moving to the northeast, I thought that I would never live here again. Dallas repulses me. Until today, I couldn't tell you exactly why.

I was alone in my car, which doesn't happen very often these days, and Nirvana's Aneurysm came on the radio. I haven't heard this song in a really long time, so I blasted it and screamed the lyrics as loud as I could. Then something became clear.

To me Dallas represents the part of me that is base; another way to say it would be that Dallas is where I take the low road. It reminds me of pain, and the shit that I went through growing up from external sources and my own self loathing as a depressed teenager. When I'm here I'm spiritually tapped into that fear, anxiety, and feeling of being trapped. My actions and relations with people in this city mirror those feelings. Many of my "friends" were self-destructive and would have been happy to bring everyone down with them.

When I was growing up, I felt like I had to hide what I was really about because I knew that there was judgment around every corner. I lived my pleasure from the bottom, the base, the dark side, whatever you want to call it. And somehow it's intimately intertwined with music. When ever I hear Smells like Teen Spirit (or any song from Bleach or Nevermind), Pink Floyd, or anything from NIN's Pretty Hate Machine, I can physically feel a change taking place. It get goosebumps.

The 4 years that I lived in the NYC area where among the best years of my life. I was happy. I give birth to my beautiful daughter. I felt that everything in the world was a possibility (it terms of intellectual pursuits). I might strike up a conversation with a stranger in the park and find out that they are a writer, artist, diplomat, or anything really... the list goes on endlessly. Some of the most interesting stories that I heard where told to me by people driving cabs. I felt that I could freely speak my views on any topic. To me NYC is the high road. I made friends with amazing people (I miss you guys!!), read great books, and had amazing conversations. And for the first 3 years I hardly ever listened to music. That changed when I got my iPod, but even then I didn't listen to the songs I mentioned.

Right now I feel that some kind of synergy is taking place where the high road and the low road are coming together. I think it will change me forever, but I'm not sure how.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Devil Take Him

While I was reading The Brothers Karamazov I came across this really interesting passage.

The middle brother Ivan is taken with brain fever, and experiences an extremely vivid hallucination in which the devil appears in his room and attempts to convince Ivan that he exists and is not a manifestation of himself. Here the devil explains that he doesn't destroy himself because people want him to live.
No, they say, live, because without you there would be nothing. If everything on earth were sensible, nothing would happen. Without you there would be no events, and there must be events. And so I serve grudgingly, for the sake of events, and I do the unreasonable on orders. People take this whole comedy for something serious, despite all their undeniable intelligence.

He continues about how pleasure is more sweet because of suffering. But the passage that follows is the one that caught my attention.
I suffer, and I still do not live. I am an x in an indeterminate equation. I am some sort of ghost of life who has lost all ends and beginnings, and I've finally even forgotten what to call myself.

Earlier in the story Ivan denounces the existence of God, because, like many of us, he doesn't understand how there can be evil in the world if an omnibenevolent God exists. This passage conveys a familiar feeling that I don't have a word for. I also felt this when I was struggling with the problem of evil. I was an atheist for many years. Now I've come to believe in God, but not evil. It's a long journey that I might go on to explain here in the future. What interests me most is that many people can believe in the presence of both God and evil. I can only believe in one or the other. It seems that Ivan is the same way.

Martian Cutie - 9!

I have had this song stuck in my head for the past two weeks. Every time I lay down to go to sleep this is what I hear -

1, 2, 3, 4, 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.
She's my real martian beauty.
She's my number nine cutie.
She has nine hairs on her head.
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9...
Tied up in ribbons of red.

She has nine little eyes,
All the same size
Looking up, down, round, and straight ahead.
She has nine little holes in her turned up nose,
And she snores when she goes to bed.

She has nine arms that's one of her charms,
Each just like the other;
Some people say she looks like her dad;
Some say she looks like her mother.

She has 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 little toes on her foot.
She doesn't go shoppin'
Cause she doesn't like hoppin',
So usually she just stays put.

... 9

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Insomnia Strikes Again

This bout of insomnia has been around for a couple of weeks, but this time I'm armed with my new friend Ambien. I didn't like the stuff until my new doctor prescribed a smaller dosage and I don't get those feelings of "oh shit, was I sleepwalking/talking/typing". I took a pill about 10 minutes ago. We'll see how long I can type before my brain starts drifting off.

I'm not sure what's bothering me. For the most part things are going well. I'm enjoying staying home with Zoe. We have started making new friends. I'm reading again. I'm feeling like I'm getting back to my old self. Of course, there is always family drama, but relatively minor stuff right now. So I'm not sure what's going on.

I'm going to wrap this up before it gets strange. Good night. Hope you have a good night's sleep.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Health Insurnace Update

After being declined for health insurance through Unicare, I applied for insurance through Goldenrule (aka United Healthcare). Again, I received a call saying that they needed additional information. I was expecting the same crazy questions that I received from Unicare, but to my pleasant surprise, all of their questions were healthcare related: was I expecting to go to the doctor in the next 6 months, have I ever had insurance with their company before, etc. I should hear back from them in 7-10 days. Anyone want to place bets?