Thursday, September 27, 2012

Grace in labels

The shortest amount of time I’ve ever held a job was three days. And that was last week. Like so many times before my past had followed me. This time it was my legal record. A felony. Some DUI’s. I was upfront about my felony. How I had blacked out after taking an increase in dosage of one my medications that my doctor and I agreed on and then got into a strangers car. The person who hired me had no problem with my criminal record. It was her bosses so I was let go.

I’ve learned throughout my life that the majority of the time what’s on paper is too black and white. If someone put it on paper before you then they must be right.

We have many ways of identifying and labeling people. I have a DOC number. It is to identify me. Yesterday, I saw my probation officer. Pictures of my tattoos were taken. They are to identify me. I lost my job because I have DOC number and a probation officer. Because I have a record.

So I am judged and labeled.

I am bipolar. So I am labeled. I used to self-medicate to try to cope. So I am judged. I am labeled. 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Thanksgiving of desperation

I’ve been mulling over two components lately; prayer and wisdom. Many times I find myself praying for wisdom or even contemplating the notion it’s in our wisdom that God hears us.

I’ve been out of work for a while and finding work is no easy task in my town. I’ve spent much of my kids lives before they went to school as a stay-at-home-dad so I’m no stranger to staying home. But now I’m alone in the house.

You may wonder what does this have to do with prayer and wisdom and praying for wisdom. By no means am “super-spiritual” but I try to spend much of my time conversing with God. Unfortunately, much of that time I question if He hears me. I know logically I He does, but feeling it is a different story.

Ever take anything for granted? Surely. Surely I have. And it’s how I feel about the wisdom God imparts upon me daily. I lost my job in March due to my disability. I’m handling that and that’s a different story to tell. But in the mean time it’s like Murphy’s law has sprung wide open on us. Anything that can go wrong will go wrong. I need to work and I have filled out numerous applications but my illness is actually preventing me from working.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Chasing Giants: A journal of my formal self

Chasing Giants: A journal of my formal self

Winter 1997

                Most of my years prior to my hospitalization I spent drinking heavily. Every chance I got I drank. Once it resulted in a DUI and that didn’t stop me.
                The mania was just as bad. Once on whim I talked my co-workers into taking a last minute trip to New Orleans for New Years Eve, and we live in Oklahoma. I constantly wanted to party. Looking back maybe it was it my way of masking my depression to extent. But then it caught up with me.
I vaguely remember that night before. But at that particular moment I have neither any idea where I am at or how I got here. I awake with two people standing over me bearing down with their condescending eyes. My head is pounding and the green colored plastic mattress and pillow doesn’t make it easy to find a 
comfortable position. That was 1997 and I was twenty-three.
“Good morning Mr. Picazo. I’m doctor ‘so and so.” I don’t remember his name. “What’s been going on that would make you want to hurt yourself?”
                “What the hell was he talking about?” I thought “Hurt myself?” But I’m pretty sure I answered that I had been very depressed lately.
                The memory came back to me. The evening before I had drank a fifth of Vodka and swallowed any number of sleeping pills. I don’t know how many. I just turned the bottle upside down and started swallowing.
                How did I get to this point? Why did I get to this point?

Monday, September 10, 2012


I was a good kid. Kid that is. Good in school. No trouble My list of I never ranged much longer than my list of have done.

Where I grew up, maturity was keeping the rules and doing the right things, marking your checklist of spiritual accomplishments and sins avoided. On the outside, I was doing well.

But inside,……I was dying. Plagued with deep depressions and manias. Inside I was different.

My accomplishments never felt like enough, and I was being crushed under the weight of my own expectations. Grades were never good enough. My art was never good enough. I was never a good enough friend. I used faith like a self-improvement plan, but ignored my heart in the process. As I cried out for acceptance, inadequacy and inferiority were my constant companions. They taunted me screaming at me in my mind.

Yet when I was exposed to the message of grace as a young adult, I struggled to believe it was for me. Even though it was like a breath of fresh air to my soul, and spoke to my heart in a way that accomplishments and discipline never could, deep down I believed I could manage without it; I’d heard of dramatic turnarounds – stories of radical sinners embracing the grace of God out of necessity. But me? I followed the rules and tried hard; I didn’t need it. I could figure it out on my own.

Where my inspiration comes from

A Recycled-Dad with Bipolar & Parkinson's, reflections on fathering and family life and other stuff thrown in'll love my Soap Box Rants

Blog with Integrity\\ Auhor Lupe Picazo

Why I call myself a Recycled Dad

I call myself a Recycled Dad because of the struggles with remarriage and being a step-parent and weekend dad. This is also about my life living with bipolar and how it affects me personally, my family and my job. It also reflects on the grace God has poured out on me throughout recovery from alcohol and an eating disorder. Recycled Dad is about my reflections on the wisdom God teaches daily on fatherhood and being a better husband in spite of being bipolar.

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