Archive for the ‘War Journals’ Category

Last Saturday was my snapping point.

I had been inside Grant Searcey’s studio, enveloped in cool air conditioning, when he received a text from my wife asking me to call her.

I went upstairs and stepped outside into the scorching sun around 3:30 in the afternoon. It felt like I had been hit by a hadouken because of the summer time heat waves. I called my wife, she was frantically buying excellent seats for The Tension Tour (Nine Inch Nails) coming to Atlanta in November so I talked to her for no longer than five minutes.

hadouken tattoo

Afterwards, I went into the store next to Searcey Underground and bought a drink to cool down.

I went back down to continue my visit with Grant. After a few minutes I noticed my thoughts were racing again. They kept racing for the rest of the day.

cuckoo2On Sunday morning my thoughts were still rapid firing. I called the Georgia Mental Health Crisis Center to ask what I should do. They told me that if in a few hours my thoughts had not calmed down that I should visit an emergency room.

So around 3pm I couldn’t get my thoughts to slow down so I asked my wife to take me for a car ride towards the hospital with two goals in mind. 1. I was praying that by riding in a fast moving car, my fast moving thoughts would counter react and slow down, and if that failed than 2. I would end my car trip at the hospital that I knew I needed to visit. I ended up in the E.R. after all.

After spending time in seclusion at the hospital I was given 2 options:

  1. Call and make an appointment with my psychiatrist as soon as possible, but continue to deal with the chaos in my head. It was the option that I wanted to do.
  2. Go to Laurelwood Mental Health Hospital to be evaluated and have my medicines reconfigured, on the site, while I stayed for at least 72 hours. It was the option that I needed to do.

I choose to do the right thing after making a quick phone call to my wife and conferring it with her.

I stayed at the Hospital from Sunday night until Friday afternoon.

I slept the entire day on the second day I was there, as well as the two last days. I would only wake up and take part in the mandatory groups, getting my vitals checked, having my blood drawn, and going to breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

On the days I was awake however I had a pretty good time. It’s amazing how easy it is for me to make friends with any type of person when they have hit a similar bottom line that I have. The food at the Hospital was also some of the best tasting I have had in a long time, and they make you eat three times a day. I had the world’s best meatloaf while I was there.

It seemed to help in going to Laurelwood. They took me off of 3 milligrams Invega and put me on 20 milligrams Geodon, The Geodon raised my Depakote level to over 100 so they dropped me down to where I now take only 1500 milligrams of those.

When I came home I took a quick nap with my wife and daughter. When we all woke up and after we ate dinner my wife went to fill my new pills at our pharmacy. It turns out that the Geodon I was prescribed isn’t covered by either Medicaid or Medicare which are my only forms of insurance. The generic price for what I was prescribed costs around 400 dollars, I bring in only 800 a month in disability and I have a wife and daughter to take care of. So now I am stuck waiting until I can get a hold of my psychiatrist to hopefully help me obtain the pills, or choose a similar pill that is covered, that I can afford.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest 19

Kinda how I felt leaving Laurelwood

This Blog entry may not be up to par with my usual style. It may seem more harsh and rushed, and to be honest I pretty much just wrote from the heart and only reread it one time. I only added one word after reading my draft, and didn’t really spellcheck. Believe me my next blog will stand up better, but I just want to blast this one out to let my few followers know that I am still going to continue writing this Blog and that I hadn’t stopped. On the flip side I am thinking about starting a fiction novel, probably dealing deep in the Post Apocalyptic meets Steampunk world.

Unfortunately, this post has nothing to do with the late, great James Brown.

It has everything to do with my pain, and my constant irritation. To bolster my negativity even further, I can’t stop complaining. But I need to…

My ongoing words of discontent have led my daughter to join in whenever she wants to relate to me and share my pain. Not that she is hurting, but because she wants me to know that she stands by my side no matter how I feel. She’s only five years old, but my wife reassures me that she picks up on everything. So I have to stop voicing how much agony I am going through.

But it’s hard to even begin to try to stop complaining. If you have MS, or if you know someone with MS, you know that misery is a most definite unchanging attribute in our/their life. There are the good days sure, but I have to seriously force them. Most of the time when I am having a good day it is either cut short because of exhaustion, or pain. I can no longer seem to enjoy myself.

pain pathwayIn the past I have had a terrible problem with my left foot. I can relate to Monell Williams, in the way that it feels like a railroad spike is being driven longways up through the bottom of my foot while the surrounding area catches fire. Once it was so bad that I had my wife take me to the Emergency Room. The nurses and doctors that tried to relieve the pain kept touching my foot, each contact felt more extreme. Finally one nurse had put her fingers on my foot at such a light weight that I could tolerate it. I told her that if she pressed any harder though I would pass out, she replied that she was just checking my heart beat. Their answer to my torture was to feed me more pills and send me home.

I have told my Pain Management doctor everything about my foot. The specialist in charge of the clinic has performed about a dozen nerve injections on me, which none have helped.

I have even undergone a spinal tap, that also didn’t alleviate anything.

Now it is summer time. Anyone who knows a little more than the average person about MS knows that heat and humidity can cause flare ups and relapses. It’s not even July yet, in fact the logo for is celebrating that it’s the first day of Summer. Yet it already feels like my feet, my left more than my right, are covered in fire ants, are internally bleeding, and are surging with electricity.

feet covered in ants

It’s hard for me to look at this. Ants are my phobia.

Today my daughter asked me for some lunch following her afternoon nap. I wanted to feed her, but I could barely stand up. It hurt to walk, especially across a house with wood floors. My wife has been suffering from a severe toothache for the past week. I was trying to allow her to lie down in hopes that I could take care of our daughter myself, but when my little girl asked for food I had to wake her up. Luckily I was on the computer in the room with my wife.

I felt so guilty that I couldn’t help either one of them.

When my wife came back to lie down I took the opportunity to describe why I couldn’t help, even though I was awake. She understood and fell back to sleep.

Soon afterwards my daughter entered the room and told me that her feet and hands hurt like mine. It disturbs me to hear her say things like that for a few reasons:

  1. I will usually believe anything my daughter tells me unless it’s outlandish. I’ve had a ton of people in my life, doctors and family, not believe I was hurting only to find out I’m disease ridden. So it scares me to think that she may truly have the same problems.
  2. It makes me think that I either talk about, or even complain about, my MS entirely too much. So much that she thinks that pain and suffering is a normal thing.

Now my wife and I have taken the time to discuss my problems, and how I am still ok, with my daughter on numerous occasions. But it never fails, she still worries that I am very hurt, sometimes to the point of dying soon. She is also afraid for me whenever it is time for me to visit the doctors, even though we have tried to reassure her that doctors are our friends (A little white lie never hurt anyone right?).

So starting now, I am going to challenge myself to be more positive. Try my best to “get on the good foot”, even though I have real bad feet. Wish me luck in lasting at least a week long.

But what do you think?

Are you also a chronic complainer? Do you never complain and instead enjoy life? What are some tips you use to make yourself feel better? Do you think I have damaged my baby girl’s psyche? Hook a brother up with some replies and we can jive about ya feels, ya dig?


R.I.P. Godfather!

I wrote the majority of this blog yesterday (6/20/2013) but instead of finishing it I feel asleep. So in not posting this yesterday it allowed me to find some pictures (Yes I know that the ants on the feet picture is cliche and overused) and it also allowed me to insert some links. Depending on how exhausted I become today I will attempt to make another post for today.
me singing on stage

That’s Big Wig on my arm!

Before my Chronic Pain started happening I was the lead singer of a Death Metal band. We weren’t known or anything, but we could fill a club. The way I got the gig was by showing off my vocals while the band played a song they had written. They all had nice amps and some mean looking drums. I didn’t even have a mic. We played a couple shows live and then my pain crept in. I could no longer perform any more, to try to sing actually hurt.

Now, I have written that in order to talk about my conditions today.

Over the weekend I was hanging out with some of my friends, both with their own unique characteristics. One is a typical badass biker dude. He has tattoos, plug piercings and every room he enters seems as if there is a bottle of Jim Beam. His voice is also so loud that the insides of my skull rattles when he breathes and explodes when he talks. My other friend is not quite a hipster, college educated and an amazing artist. He also owns his own business and is married, the complete opposite of my other friend previously mentioned. My friend, the artist, doesn’t talk that much, unless you spark the conversation. When he does decide to have an exchange of words, it is in a mild manner.

Both of them are awesome.

But I can only handle the first guy for a few hours at a time. After a while his voice just seems to raise in volume, either that or my ears begin to wear down. I want to keep talking with him, but I feel so exhausted. Before, back in my Death Metal days, I would have been able to handle him and even go around town and party. Now, fatigue sets in to the point where I just have to come home and sleep.

Lately, during a conversation my brain will almost always tell me when I should end and/or leave a conversation. If I try to ignore those feelings and continue on withconversation, my thoughts begin to race. When all of those problems combine it makes me irritable, having a high likelihood of lashing out. Not because I am mad at anyone, but because I am mad of the symptoms related to my Multiple Sclerosis.

It’s not just individual people that bother me. I can no longer be around crowds without the intense feeling of anxiety and panic. Remember when I stated how my band could fill a club full of people? Now imagine that, but place me front and center with the spotlight on…remember I am the lead vocalist. My Multiple Sclerosis has lead me to have such high anxiety levels that being around a crowd of five or more people can really put me onedge, and that’s without them not even noticing I’m there. If they are loud, have high energy, or are giddy it makes it ten times worse. Also, if we have the tables turned, there are tons of bands that I still want to see live. For example, Nine Inch Nails is coming to Atlanta soon, and I really want to see them, but it’s in a concert venue where there will be a ton of people.  The volume of the band, mixed with the cheers of the audience is probably enough to set me off and make me want to leave before the show even starts….. we’ll see.


Does sound affect you? Would you rather have the noise cancelling headphones on just to mute everyone out, even if you don’t use them for audio? Do you want to slap giddy teenagers? Leave a comment and we can discuss why the world thinks we are crazy!

idk what were yelling about


Again I have slept through out the important part of the day. The part of the day where everyone I love is awake and would like for me to join them.
I hate this. I wish I could change this. But I just can’t come to grips with any normal sleeping pattern.
Today I continue with my brand new case of anxiety. My wife worded it better though, instead of anxiety I think I may be having a bout of Delirium. Maybe it is just a strange instance of Mania.
As far as the delirium is concerned I have almost every symptom except for the old age factor.

  • Cognitive Impairment (Because of my MS)
  • Physical Comorbidity (Because of my MS)
  • Psychiatric Comorbidity (Not only do I have MS, but I have Depression. Though I am not really depressed I am more angry than anything. Before finding out that I was suffering from MS I had spent two weeks in a mental institution because of how I was treating my loved ones. I also wanted to hurt every doctor that couldn’t help me, which I now know that there is no doctor that can.)
  • Sensory impairment (My eyes are going bad, it’s a fact. The way I even found out I had MS was by visiting an Ophthalmologist after a concert where I couldn’t make out the band members. But that’s not all, I am also losing my sense of normal feeling. My hands and feet are both numb. I am typing all of what I am writing on my blog even though I own the Dragon Software on this computer. The reason I am doing that is because I want to stay as connected as possible to a tangible world for as long as I can.)
  • Functional dependence (I rarely stand up. The only times I get up during the day, during a normal period where my MS isn’t bothering me as bad, is to play with my daughter, give my wife a hug or to use the bathroom. If I go somewhere outside of the house I usually have to make sure that I can be seated wherever I go. The last trip my family took I had to be wheeled through the airport in a wheelchair.)
  • Dehydration / Malnutrition (Not only do I have MS, Chronic Pain, and Depression, I also have Diabetes. I also do not eat or drink how the doctors tell me I should. I drink out of those large cups you can buy at any gas station and most of the time it is water. But there are times when I just want to have a Sprite or a Sweet Tea. I also enjoy my Oreos more than I should.)
  • Drugs and drug-dependence (I am only going to say that I fall under this label because of all of the pills I must take every day because of all of the sicknesses I have. As far as recreational drugs go, other than caffeine,  I don’t do them, I don’t even smoke pot.)
  • Alcohol dependence (This can go along with the Old Age factor. I don’t drink, and if I do it is only an apple cider or two throughout the week.)

I am awake now at 5:37 in the morning.With no one around me.

My wife and daughter are sleeping over at a friend of theirs house.

My thoughts are racing.

My wife says I should listen to some relaxing music, but I can’t. Every noise, no matter the volume, is bothering me. Even the fan in my computer, allowing me to write out my racing thoughts, is making me feel panicked. And when I feel overwhelmed I fall back into the old MS cure of sleeping (that’s why this post is so late, I was supposed to post this yesterday). Now there are birds chirping outside my window, unlike everyone else that enjoys that type of sound, I am analyzing it and noticing how out of sync with itself that it is.

Dali clock melting

How can anyone seriously watch Nancy Grace or Jane Velez-Mitchell? Let me explain.

Today (6/12/2013) I woke up ok. I was even feeling a little better than usual without any need of extra medicine. My daughter was dressed and watching Alice in Wonderland around 7:15am. As she waited for her ride to take her to Bible School I came into my bedroom and played some music. At first I listened to some Post Metal/Hardcore,  then some Progressive Metal. After a few minutes my anxiety had risen to the point of driving me crazy. I tried entering the words Relax, then Chill on my 8tracks Windows 8 app and tried to listen to something soothing. Nothing seemed to calm me down. At this point my daughter was back home and sleeping so I decided to take a nap.

I don’t know if it pertains to what was happening but as I was panicking I kept putting on more clothes. I live a little north of Atlanta. Georgia and most normal people would be wearing shorts and short sleeve shirts at this time. I was wearing a hoody and sweat pants before I climbed in to bed pulling two blankets over me.

I slept from 2pm until 7pm.

When I woke up I walked into the front room where I found my daughter and wife. My baby girl was playing with Legos and Spiderman Squinkies. My wife was sitting up on the edge of the couch looking frazzled. We had had a scary day yesterday where we had to rush our daughter to the hospital because she was breaking out due to an allergic reaction. After all of that sleep I was still having some sort of an anxiety attack but I traded places with my wife so that she could get some truly deserved sleep.

We live with my wife’s parents. The Multiple Sclerosis and pain has made it so I can no longer work. My wife can not find a job in this small city we live in, but even if she could she has to do a lot with just being a mother, and a care giver for me. My wife is in school so we may still have a bright future, but today we barely take home any money.

So as I am sitting in our little front room where my daughter is playing all I hear is what my wife’s dad is watching. Which happens to be Nancy Grace.

I’m sure she is getting really heated because of Jodi Arias, or Trayvon Martin, or Teen Pregnancy,, or why balloons make a squeaky sound when you rub them real hard. It is so loud and obnoxious that it is deafening and maddening. Why does she feel the need to yell everything she says? Football coaches are quieter than her, during the Super Bowl! Another fact is that she invites these guests on her show via satellite, usually two people but sometimes up to five. All she does is try to force her opinion down on these people. If the person stands their ground and voices their opinion then it turns into an over the air catfight of who is the loudest voice of exaggeration of them all. Don’t get me started on Jane Velez-Mitchell. She’s even worse, sometimes she forgets what she is arguing about, and she still continues.

So with my anxiety making my skin crawl I told my daughter that it was bedtime. I told her she could watch a movie or even play a game, just anything so that we could leave the surrounding area of the television’s verbal barrage.

nancy grace

Nancy Grace pretends to eat Subway