I posted three days back about how I am feeling remarkably good. My depression has subsided to a very manageable level. I know that this is for sure the case since today I not only sewed for a while but I also cleaned my desk well for the first time in months. When you are feeling awful it is so much easier to walk in to your house and walk past all of the mess and crawl in bed. I’m glad that I dealt with most of it cause it makes me feel so much better and productive. I forget how great the space I live in is when it’s not a disaster. It’s awesome to be able to walk in to a light filled home that’s clean. I think its because of Krithi and Kavin.
Today is gloomy and so I am gloomy. I cannot believe how much the weather affects me. When it rains I get manic because I love rain so much. When there is wind or thunder and lightening I have panic attacks from the random noise. Random noises set me off. That includes construction work, fireworks, etc. The sunshine makes me manic. So I have to work to fight all of it and maintain some medium ground.
At this point god is not part of my life and I am okay with that. It’s difficult to accept everything else when that is an issue for me. I was raised very religious and it was a horrible experience for me. Life altering really. I’m not prepared to have god in my life. Am I right!
Well, the medicine is working. We half ed my dose and I am feeling so much better. I am sleeping soundly and I am feeling rested up. I have slowed down which is a great sign. The “bad thoughts” are completely gone. The only real problem right now is feeling exhausted no matter how much I sleep. Small price to pay for being able to stay at home and take care of my family and myself. What a relief.
You're a bit wary of the plot and its execution, though; it might be a record to have so many directors on board, but this is like a doctor undergoing an operation -- he knows too much to let someone else take the reins.
As it turns out, once you've gotten past the rather irritating voice-over introductions, things aren't that bad: each character is introduced in a steady fashion, giving space to all, starting from Mayandi (Manivannan), his strong and affectionate sons Thavasi (Ponvannan), Virumandi (Seeman), Cheenichamy (Jegannath), and Paraman (Tharun Gopi). His brother Virumandi (G M Kumar) and his sons, Chokkan (Ravi Maria), Chinnu (Nanda Periyasami) are permanently at loggerheads with their cousins, barring Mayandi (Singampuli), who's mentally challenged, but nevertheless likes his uncle very well. Added to the mix is the money-grubbing Sonakkaruppu (Raj Kapoor ), who, with his wife Mayakka (Deepa) -- Mayandi's daughter -- often makes unreasonable demands on them. Still, Mayandi's sons are so good-hearted that they grudge not a penny.
Essentially, this is more a family saga than a plain story: Mayandi's first two sons are already married with wives Thavamani (Poovitha) and Pavunu (Kaniya) who patently dislike the joint-family system and are desperate to move out. In the meantime, there's the widowed Azhagamma (S Priya), Mayandi's widowed sister and her daughter Pecchi (Thamizarasi), living nearby, and who have to be provided for.
It's a happy family more or less; Paraman, the last of the brothers has never known his mother and his affection for his father leads him to emotional outbursts. Romance blooms while he's still in school with the fresh-faced Poongodi (Poongodi), and the two carry on long after college.
In the meantime, there's the happy-go-lucky Cheenichamy who arranges sound systems at fairs, and whose marriage is arranged to Dhanam (Hema). Plenty of good-natured family hilarity ensues, with Virumandi's son Mayandi providing laughs. Virumandi (Seeman) is an activist who spends a good deal of his time parleying for the rights of villagers -- which merits him an introduction song anyway.
But no family can continue in paradise; troubles creep up one by one. The biggest catastrophe strikes when Mayandi dies in a freak accident -- and suddenly, everything and everyone threaten the brothers' love for each other.
Sometimes, there's a strong whiff of Vikaraman's screenplay, especially when Sabesh-Murali pop in with their theme song (the musical duo supposedly said they were moved by Rasu Madhuravan's narration, during which he wept often), at others, you're reminded very strongly of the sentimental sagas of the 60s, when every character had miles of dialogue to cover, and spoke reams about love, loyalty, duty and country.
And yet -- perhaps it's because the actors are directors who are well aware of emotion and just how to bring it onscreen -- their body language and dialogue delivery, no matter how stilted the words, are almost perfect. Their affection onscreen, instead of making you cringe, actually does induce genuine sympathy and understanding.
By the end of it all, you begin to wish that you really had brothers like these who stuck to their convictions, stood by ach other and weathered life's storms. Kudos to the director who managed to get such performances from them. Special mention had to be made of the wives -- they're spot on, and their dialogues are superb.
Where the director could have improved is by getting Suresh Ars to edit out the whole cousins-conflict; it seems superfluous. It's obvious he's been influenced a great deal by Subramaniapuram, Paruthiveeran and others -- practically every scene seems inspired.
If you're a fan of sentimental tear-jerkers shot with a healthy dose of rural life -- this one's your cup of tea.
Strange times, strange thoughts. So much going on for me. Mind being rearranged. Forces I can barely comprehend moving me around. Structures of meaning shown to be fractured and lacking. A night without medication becomes a long journey through ideas and memories. Is it necessary to be angry? Because mostly I am sad.
Last night I went to bed thinking about why I avoided speaking to my father for so long. I think another part of the reason that I was hesitant is because he doesn’t know the whole story. He thinks that all of the drama surrounding me is only related to my mental illness. He knows nothing about me. This makes it so much harder to talk to him. I don’t like lying and with out him knowing that I don’t have a choice. My mom told me I should just tell him but I REALLY don’t want to. We’ll see how it plays out.
Before I went to sleep last night I laid on my bed and cried for an hour. I’m not the crying type but lately I can’t help it. I feel like everyday I break in to more and more pieces. I’m falling apart right along side my splintering life. Despite the fact that I have a few amazing people in my life, I feel alone. The most alone I have ever been.
It’s been forever since I have written. I guess I have felt like I shouldn't write about things if they weren’t about Anipra. That’s silly and from here on out, this is not a blog about my struggles with Anipra. She is no longer my struggle and I want this to reflect that. The last few months have been great and they deserve to be remembered for more than the awfulness that preceded them.
Today I don’t have time to write a good entry but I def will start a new sometime on tomorrow!
I keep trying to write new posts but it isn’t working out for me. I realize that I don’t really have anything worth writing about. There is nothing actively happening in my life. I’m just quietly waiting for this situation to resolve. I think the conclusion that I have come to is that no matter what she decides to do. There is too much hurt, resentment, and anger. I don’t want to have to carry that around with me. She and I both need a fresh start. We have been together since we were just kids. We have become the adults we are because of each other. As much as I have enjoyed much of our time and growth, I need and want to develop outside of her. Who knows, maybe I’ll like the me with out her better.
I was speaking about this situation today and I realized that part of the reason I hate this situation so much is because I have no control over anything. I have been forced in to a situation where all of my options are terrible. When I really look at the situation I don’t even think that I can logically say that I even have two options. It’s unreasonable to think that speaking with her is even viable. I hate that. Since I was about 29 my life has been all set. I will continue my business, marry Anipra, and get a good life. I was happy with that. It’s really hard and terrifying to think that everything I thought my life was going to be has changed. The basis of EVERYTHING is different. I can’t even express how scary that is. I know that I will be ok eventually and I don’t doubt that I will live a happy life but that doesn’t make this any less scary and terrible right now.
The farther removed I get from the whole situation with Anipra, the more I am starting to minimize it. Because nothing insanely painful and dramatic has happened in the last few months, my brains automatic reaction is to forget. Forget all of the hurt. Forget all of the anger. Forget all of the lies.
That’s crazy. There is no excuse for that. I have had 13 years worth of experiences that tell me that idealizing the past is dumb, but it’s so easy to do. It’s so easy for me to focus on the good things. Despite everything, Anipra is the single funniest and smartest person I know and I love that about her. The times we would go to temples, parks and cinemas and she would bring something like interesting books and I would look over and see her reading a 200 page book, but because she was simply interested. Or the time she got me a same type of books (which was the best gift ever). Or the many times we laughed until I had an stomach pain. Those are the things that I can’t get out of my head…. and it hurts. It hurts badly. I miss her so intensely it feels like a physical sensation. I hate it. I know that as time goes on it will get less painful but for now it stinks.
A friend asked me a few days ago if I considered myself single or not. I didn’t have an answer. Like I have said many times in the past, the only thing I can do is walk away. There is no other logical option but it’s hard to say “I am no longer with her.” However, lately I have been actually trying to accept that idea. I feel far more single than I ever have in the past. I have started saying that I am single… and it hurts.
I am having a really terrible time right now. Everyday feels worst than the last. I feel helpless,misguided, and out of control. I don’t think I always realize it but I’m angry with everyone’s inability to understand what I am going through. This is absolutely not their fault, but it is still extremely frustrating. If I have to hear one more person say “you deserve so much better” or “you’ll be okay” I’m going to scream. Telling me I deserve better is not helpful in this situation and telling me I will be ok is just plain unnecessary. I have no doubt that whatever happens I will be fine, that does not however make it any easier for me to suffer through this situation. It’s a little terrifying that I am relating to the way I felt before I cut my arm a few months ago. It’s really hard for me to admit that but there it is. It’s humiliating. It’s embarrassing. It’s demoralizing.
I have brothers who would do anything for me. Lately I have not been capable of being the most supportive brother and still, they are there, ready to do whatever it takes to help me get through it.
To all of the people in my life who are wonderful, thank you. Thank you for giving exactly what I need at exactly the right time.
And thank you to those of you who read my blog and send me encouragement. It is great to feel heard. I have spent so much of the last 8 years keeping things hidden that it feels amazing to get it out there and have people actually listen and care. So again, Thank
This is the first letter that I wrote to Anipra on my birthday(15 /6).
Hi baby! I have been thinking for a couple of days about what I’m going to write… and I am still unsure. First of all, I miss you… madly. I wish that you would have written a little more about the program, but I guess there are future letters for that. I’m so glad you eventually decided to go down there. I want you to recover so badly. You have so much to offer the world, and the people around you, when you are clean and healthy.
I guess the next topic is the important one. I couldn’t for a second tell you that I don’t love you… because I do still adore you. I don’t think that is enough right now. I know that you are making an effort to realize the huge effects this has had on my life, and the other people around you, but I don’t know if you can fully grasp what the last year has been like for me. I don’t think you understand the emotional implications of thinking, for months, that last time I talked to you very well could be the last or what it feels like to stay up almost every night. How terrible it is to be 450 miles away. These things, and many others, have left horrible scars on me. I’m a broken person. At this point, I have nothing to give. Not to you. Not to anyone else.
I spent so much of the last few years being your caretaker that I neglected myself. I let myself get to a spot that I don’t ever want to be again and right now I am trying to recover from that. I need to spend this time to heal because I have years worth of healing to do.
Anipra, I love you so much. No matter what happens I want to be involved in your recovery and helping you get well the best I can. I’m sorry, since I know this is bound to make you upset just like it has for me, but you asked me to be as honest as possible. So here it is.
I love you so much.
When I don’t get sleep everything feels wrong for the rest of the day. Sleep is often an elusive thing for me. There are many nights that I lay awake and wonder why. Either I am thinking too much or my sleep isn’t deep enough or I am awaken too early by a snore or an alarm. And then there is nothing that I can do about it. That is that. I am up and can’t go back to sleep.
I have found that when I sleep I feel pretty stable, as long as I get around nine hours a night. When I sleep less I get disturbed and when I sleep too long I get depressed, down in the mouth. And if this happens night after night then those moods get worse and worse.
I don’t know the cure. I do know that I take a sleep aid and I work at making sure that I follow a routine and I don’t think that I will ever be able to change the fact that I am a light sleep and always have been. My heavy feather pillow has been the saving grace in it all. I plop it over my exposed ear and I can hardly hear anything. That helps a lot.
So this morning it was the alarm that was snoozed twice and I lay there and kept thinking, “Why don’t you just get up? Or instead, why don’t you set your alarm for later? Either way, quit waking me up when I could still be sleeping.” And so I am awake.
Today I am turning over a new leaf - forget the New Years Resolutions - I am going to do Happy Birthday Resolutions. I am stressed out too often about things that really don't matter and I am the one who does it to myself. It is me who must make the change.
1 - Enjoy the day! Be refreshed in my spirit daily - this is what I too often let slide.
* I would like to watch the sunsets every night that I am able.
* I love to have Daily Devotion time, but sometimes I rush through it...slow down
* Everyday exercise for me
2 - Say "no" to too many commitments and say "yes" to loving others
3- I would like to go back to my office, I have about one assignment and I would like to finish it. Then maybe go on to get my business back.
4 - Live in love and light and joy
I have done my daily devotion time and exercised. Today, being Monday I get our home in order which I love to do, , picked up the house, done a cover on my book.
What am I doing the rest of the day.... we like everyone, trying to cut back so we are having a stay at home day. I know it sounds weird but it is quite amazing! Then I hope we can watch a movie and have a nice dinner together.
So Happy Birthday to me
The last few hours have been really wonderful. Anxiety free? No, however I have been in a phase of just being. Not over reacting to stress. Not adding fear to fear. And I must admit it feels great.
I apologize for not updating my blog as much but as I begin to feel better, the less I want to talk about anxiety. And tomorrow is my 29th Birthday. I hope this year will be wonderful as i wish.
Too many people recently have expressed confusion over how I can STILL be ill.
“What, you’re still on medication?”
Unfortunately, people, I am. I wish I was well, too. Instead, I’m not.
Everytime someone asks me this, I wonder too why I’m still ill; too lazy, too stuck? Just everything bad about a person is what I am.Why can’t I get better? Aren’t you trying? Are both some other questions I’ve had. It’s horrible. I’m doubting myself enough as it is. I don’t want to be like this anymore, and quite frankly, although I’m all for openness, maybe not so much if people ask such questions. Or maybe they need to be better educated. All they need to know is that I don’t know what the hell my brain’s doing and I am trying thankyouverymuch.
People don’t understand depression isn’t like a physical illness, like a cold which is gone in a week; your ‘depression’ may have lasted 6 months, may have lasted a week. Using ‘ ‘ isn’t meant to take value off what they were experiencing, but I suspect at times that it isn’t really depression. I just want to be ‘well’…
I had online chat with the psychologist on Thursday and we both agree that I have become a bit lazy. I’ve been laying back just hoping recovery happens rather than taking an active role in my own recovery. I need structure and feedback so I have developed a personal recovery plan and will be tracking my progress. Here is what it looks like:
Problem: I worry too much about my health
Goal: I will worry less
Plan: Schedule 2-10 Minute worry sessions per day. Worry will take place between 9:50-10:00 AM and 10:50-11:00 PM. Nothing but worrying thoughts can be included in worry session.
Problem: Worry has created a tense and on-edge body
Goal: I will return to a relaxed state of wellness
Plan: Schedule 2-10 Minute meditation/relaxation sessions per day. AM/PM
Problem: I have lost faith in the strength of my body
Goal: I will become physically fit
Plan: 15 minutes of cardio (walking, running, etc.) 6 times per week; want to purchase a treadmill till that i will go to gym; weight lifting 3 times per week
Problem: I have lost faith in my bodies ability to heal
Goal: Provide a supple body that will heal itself
Plan: AM/PM Yoga everyday
Problem: Anxiety is created by a fear of passing out/dying in public
Goal: Gradually increase the amount of time I spent away from the house
Plan: Develop a log to track when, where, and for how long I am away from home.
Updated glossary of medications I will mention in this blog.
Silybon, 140mg 1 (Supportive treatment for liver disease)
DEPAKOTE, 250mg 1 (for the treatment of acute manic or mixed episodes associated with bipolar disorder)
Oleanz plus 1 (Drowsiness, weight gain, increased appetite, dizziness, constipation, dry mouth, raised liver enzymes)
Becozinc 1 cap (B-complex)
Silybon, 140mg 1
DEPAKOTE, 250mg 1
Tancodep, 25 mg, 1 (Anixety depression syndrome, neurotic or reactive depression, agitation associated with depression)
Oleanz plus 1
Mirtaz, 15 mg 1 (Drowsiness, dizziness, sleepiness, nausea, dry mouth & Mirtazapine is prescribed for the treatment of major depression. Generic Remeron (Mirtazapine) is thought to work by adjusting the balance of the brain's natural chemical messengers, especially norepinephrine and serotonin)
For the longest time, and to be honest I still do this to one degree or another, I would go to bed each night hoping and praying that when I awoke in the morning I would magically be changed into the person I want to be, free of anxiety. Obviously this miracle never happened and I believe that this thought process has helped to keep me in the anxiety cycle. The cycle looks a little something like this:
1. Suffer from anxiety all day.
2. Go to bed hoping that during the night I will be healed.
3. Wake up asking how I feel.
4. The first anxiety symptom in the morning confirms I am not healed.
5. Drop deeper into anxiety & depression.
6. Go to bed……
The cognitive distortions that seem to be most present in my negative thoughts are:
* Over-generalization: Viewing a negative event as a never-ending pattern of defeat — “This always happens!”
* All-or-Nothing Thinking: Viewing things in absolute, black and white categories.
* Jumping to Conclusions: The tendency to jump to conclusions not warranted by the facts.
* Discounting the Positive: Insisting that your positive qualities don’t count.
It seems that when I have those great days where I feel like there is a light at the end of the tunnel, they are so often followed up with days of hopelessness and despair. It is in these moments that the balance of life is so fragile, it would be so easy to just give in and fall. When I am like this my mind tells me “just stay in bed, what do you think you will accomplish today? If I choose A or B, both are wrong and nothing will really ever change.”
Right now I have several things going on that I think add to this sense of hopelessness. In the near future, I will be forced to make several decisions about my future employment. I am also helping a friend deal with a particularly stressful time. And I face the daily battle of making the choice to do or avoid — do I go to my sister Revathi's function or do I stay home?
When the perfect storm of elements come together, I slip into a state of what I call “The Weirdness”. This state can be best described as living in a waking dream state. I’m so focused inward, that the outside world starts to look foreign and surreal. This state scares me. I guess clinically it would be called Depersonalization, although this is not a constant state and I have never been diagnosed as having this disorder.
Back when I would spend the majority of my day searching the Internet for information, I came across a trailer for a movie called Numb that does a great job visualizing what this state of “Weirdness” is like.
I like to believe that I am making progress, that I am getting better, that I am recovering from this illness. However at times, I find it very hard to believe. I like to think that I’m getting better but maybe I am just fooling myself, telling myself what I want to hear, what I want to believe. It’s so hard to see the progress I’ve made as I’m so caught up with being inside myself, always examining myself.
Perhaps I am fooling myself, perhaps I am telling myself what I want to believe but maybe that is ok, for without hope, what do we have?
I have concluded that if I could shut off the outside world 50% of my problems would be solved, the other 50% would be solved if I could shut off the world inside my mind but then what am I left with, nothing more than the thing I fear the most.
My mind is very susceptible to outside stimuli, I can’t shut it off, I can take steps to avoid particularly bad influences on me but I can’t shut out everything, so part of recovery must be retraining my mind how to respond to outside stimuli.
Yesterday, if is wasn’t already totally apparent, it was pointed out to me that my thoughts are constantly negative and that these negative thoughts can make me physically ill in a mater of minutes, sometimes even seconds. Rather than always focusing on the negative I was told:
* My illness is real
* Be happy
* Be healthy
* Be strong
* Be positive
* Be grateful
It was kind of like a slap in the face, one I needed to snap me out of it. So I thought, I’m going to put a heavy rubber band on my wrist and every time an unhealthy thought pops into my head, I’m going to snap that rubber band, snap it hard enough to leave a mark on my skin. So thats what I did. Last night as a negative thought entered my head, I would snap the rubber band and quickly snap my mind out of that track and rephrase my negative thought. I know its only short term but I feel great, it was so wonderful to have the chance to rest for just a brief moment and as one of my friends told me “that’s how it can be long term though, you moved yourself out of it, that’s what being present is.”
An example of how this works. Last night, as I was dragging myself around the house, the thought popped into my mind “why are you so tired?”. I snapped the rubber band hard, making my eyes water and I said to myself “why are you so tired? well, you got up early, had your breakfast, had your lunch, worked out all day, had dinner and went to bed, is it any wonder you are a bit tired? Go relax.” So I did.
Call it anxiety. Call it chronic stress. Name it whatever you wish but what we are all dealing with is a break down of body & mind. A vicious, self-perpetuating cycle of body reacting to mind and mind reacting to body. To heal, we must give proper attention to both body and mind.
* Running daily. Goal 5 kms a day. Current 2 kms.
* Daily yoga to improve balance, coordination, and breathing while reducing muscle tension
and increasing awareness.
* Less Computer and more reading.
* Daily 20 minute meditation.
A reminder to myself. Lasting and life transforming change takes time. Change will come in small doses, don’t wake up thinking that over night big changes will occur. Keep the focus and know that in time, positive change will continue to come.
When Rajinikanth’s character Kali tells the engineer (Sarat Babu), Rendu kai, rendu kaal ponakuda, kali angarava polachikava, sir. Ketta payan sir, avan, we empathize with Kali as we never have with any of Rajini’s other characters with the exception perhaps of the writer in Aarilinthu aravathu varai.
The stars were all perfectly aligned in Mullum Malarum - stellar performances by Rajini and Shoba ably supported by Fatafut Jayalakshmi and somewhat by Sarat Babu (a bit stiff though), a moving story, solid screenplay, fabulous songs and an able hand at the rudder contributed to the movie’s phenomenal success.
More than Rajini, more than Shoba, more than Fatafut Jayalakshmi and more than Illayaraja, Mullum Malarum director J.Mahendran deserves kudos for crafting such a beautiful movie.
Set in a small village in the Annamalai Hills, the story revolves around a gruff character Kali (Rajinikanth), working as a winch operator in the area, and his sister Vali (Shoba).
Two events herald changes in the placid lives of the brother and sister, but more so in the case of Kali - the arrival of a new engineer (Sarat Babu), who also happens to be Kali’s boss; and the arrival of an old lady and her feisty and gluttonous daughter Manga (Fatafut Jayalakshmi).
While Jayalakshmi was a prettier lass, Shoba was a far superior actress and threw in a non pareil performance (by Tamil movie standards). Among the youngsters, Sandhya of dailamo, dailamo fame reminds us of Shoba.
Another interesting feature of Mullum Malarum is that romance does not hog the screen-time. Love or romance is but one element of the myriad facets of life, not the raison d’être as the brainless twits of Bollywood and Kollywood would make it seem. There’s ego, there’s greed, there’s anger, there’s frustration, there’s revenge, there’s envy and so many other human emotions that never get adequate play in Bollywood and Kollywood movies because love leaves no room for anything else.
Mullum Malarum dares to be different. Anger, more than love, is the leitmotif of this charmer. What a relief that love plays second fiddle to other emotions, for once.
Music is another highlight of Mullum Malaram.
Who having heard it once can ever forget the maestro Illayaraja’s hauntingly beautiful music for songs like Senthaazham Poovil, Adi Pennae or Niththam Niththam Nellu.
I’m terribly sorry I had to do this through a letter, this will make us both a lot better off, well me at least. Listen, it’s not you, it’s me. I just am incapable of loving you anymore and I think this is best, for both of us. This note will be the last memory you’ll ever have of me, I’m bouncing and not looking back. Don’t let it get you all upset inside, I always liked your friends Hope and Optimism more. It is because of your history of poor advice and lack of concern for anyone but yourself that kept me from being even remotely interested in continuing this relationship with you.
You’d be much better off finding a person that can deal with the annoying way you never stopped talking about all the drama in your life and how things would be so much better if we just became hermits together. I might miss certain things about you such as your ability to make me see what is really important in life — it surly isn’t money or a job or clothes.
I’m glad this is done and we’re going separate directions for good. I think you’ll find someone who can console with you, who will be willing to be always down in the dumps, and someone who thinks your dark ways are charming but sorry baby, that just isn’t me.
I hope things work out for you but please don’t write or call, I have no interest in seeing or hearing from you anymore. And I’m sorry if i ruined your life, Anxiety, because that is exactly what I set out to do!
I don’t know if I pushed it too hard yesterday or not but today I have more free floating anxiety than normal. It just feels like it is going to be a rough day. I’m struggling to be able to think positively. I know that if I could just shift my state of mind, today would be fine but I just have this fear that I won’t be able to stop the negative thoughts today.
Even after all of these experiences I have gone through, I am still amazed at how powerful thoughts are. Simple thoughts can make me feel like I am on the verge of dying or make me feel like I am unstoppable. How can one minute I be in bed, unable to move, thinking I’m dying, and the next be riding my bike 5 miles?
I need to find a support person today to help me stay positive, today can either be really productive or can be the start of a set back.