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An Experimental Journal

The following page will be a series of related entries about my life as it unfolds. Those little things we do in life, perhaps are the most important ones and it is what defines as.

An Experimental Journal

Moving Out and the Strugle to Quit Smoking

Monday 29/0572015 10:51 PM
This is not the first time I try to quit smoking. Today I smoked 1 pack of cigarettes. The first one, in the morning just killed me. I felt it through my blood and started shaking a bit. It is not the first time I feel like that, probably because I have been thinking about quitting for the last couple of days. I love cigarettes, I am an addict. Will I be able to quit this time. I don’t know. Anxiety and depression don’t mix well, and cigarettes generate more anxiety. Should it be ok to quit now that I am moving out in 2 days, knowing all my feelings and background towards this same situation. There will always be an excuse? Probably. Will quitting cigarettes solve my anxiety issues? I don’t know. I just feel that my mind is occupied in the next cigarette. Not a good thing. Will I be free of nicotine? I don’t know.
Should I quit now and shut up? Probably yes. Do I have the will? Probably not. I just smoked my last one. Let’s see what happens tomorrow.

Tuesday 30/05/2017 09:55 AM
Dammit, it is almost twelve hours since my last post. I have not lighted any cigarette yet. My cravings are extremely high. I have to do many errands today. I will kill for a cigarette. That’s all I have to say.

The Brand I smoke.
Tuesday 30/05/2017 10:43 AM
I went to the Bodeguita (store) to buy one cigarette. I am a sinner. I did not buy a package of 10 or 20 cigarettes. Here you can get them individually. I smoke Pall Mall, they are mild. I first taste the flavor, it was different. I did not like, I was doing something by control remote. My brain was craving to smoke, so I did. Now my heart is pumping fast because my veins are shrinking. I already know the effects of smoking. I hope I can keep up the rest of the day without smoking.

Wednesday 31/05/2017 10:08 AM
Yesterday I smoked a total of 6 cigarretes.  I thought what the heck, that’s better than nothing. From the 20 something cigarettes I was smoking a day, that’s an improvement. Nicotine is low in my body so my brain wants more. Why did I smoke more cigarettes? Because while doing my errands my radiator overheated. What! I was extremely nervous because I don’t have the money to repair a big damage, plus I am moving out today at night so I have to do many things before I leave. I kind of handled the anxiety without taking any drugs. It is important. A few years ago I was taking anxiolytics, and in the long run they are addictive and you feel numb, that’s not good but it was the only way to cope with anxiety and depression. I did it on my own; something typical when you feel depressed and nothing seem to work out. Anxiolytics are a way to stop pain but at the same time you stop having emotions, there is no thinking process that accompanies the treatment of anxiety, indeed it makes you avoid al thinking. So the disturbing pattern I might have had is still there. I surely recommend not taking them, only by prescription, but be careful anyway. Adding another addiction to your body can be destructive.

I have to stop driving. I pulled my car to the side of the street, and walked to the store to buy a cola, that will take me 30 minutes, enough to let the radiator to cold down. I added water and I drove to my dear mechanic, Don Victor, I know him for years and he is always helpful, and never tries to take advantage of my situation which appreciate. Don Victor took a look of my car; he said it is the cup. I made some changes like oil and repairing the lights which cost me enough to worry about my little budget. Hey, I am struggling right now with all the expenses without having an income and it does not give a peace of mind. But overall I could handle Tuesday.

I went to bed as always, around one in the morning anyhow I could sleep throrouly. I woke up many times kind of scare for all the fears I have about moving out and my future income. It was horrible. I slept in periods of one hour until eight in the morning. I had my tv on, just to give some whispering noise. I woke up and charge my laptop and went to bed again to watch some news, that’s my routine. Thirty minutes later the tv stop working. The electricity went off. I thought it was because I had to pay for it yesterday, but I couldn’t because the car broke down. No! It was a general shortcut. I got nervous because I am moving today and live in a 6th floor. The elevator is not working. Now I am writing with the little energy I got in the morning for the battery. I hate shortcuts; I am so use to modern comfort that changing my everyday routine makes me crazy.

So here I am struggling any minute with my emotions, past patterns of conduct and trying to quit smoking. You would say “don’t do it now” but the truth is that there is always an excuse not to do things. That way we avoid changes and there is not an optimal time to do things.

To tell you the truth, I am a mess now. Nonetheless, I keep fighting with my issues and I think I am doing just fine enough to avoid collapse. There are many little things that help me, one of them is writing like I am doing now, the other is to talk to people about my concerns. I am not saying to tell everybody about your life, just a few close friends.

My future bothers me. I had many years of denial, my life was no life, I was really dead. Now I don’t have anything but I am writing again, that gives me hope of doing what I want to do. Will I be able to live from my writing, I don’t know, I wish I can predict the future or better change the future in my advantage, but who knows.

My exapartment was a Mess, just like me

Yesterday I opened an account on Twitter where I will be posting updates to this Blog and the other in Spanish. I already have my Facebook which is good, but only works for my contacts and they are no more 300. I keep looking and my blog statistics in Spanish, the traffic is fine for me, but this blog is just starting and reading levels are low, that’s the reason I opened the Twitter account, in hopes that it will increase the readers.

My new Twitter Account

I am scared of returning to a full time office job, that will not allow me to be free and as it happened before it will not give time to write. See the pattern. Even if you don’t suffer from depression the patterns are the same, you and me have fears, but for a reason we don’t know it will affect me badly. I was checking some YouTube channels about depression, and none of them suffer from it. I was mad because the perception they have towards depression is not right. I am not asking for extra attention, NO! I am just writing about it, dealing with it and hopefully it will inspire others to come out and tell their story. I write because it helps me deal with demons, in other words it helps to break down patterns, learn from it and be better and happier.

Hey, this is not a one-time trial; it is a lifetime of trial an error. Problems are not solved with money, problems are not solved in one day or with one pill, problems are to be analyzed, then process the information and try to redo your thoughts over and over. It is tiresome, I know, but it works in the long term.

31/05/2017 Wednesday 12:56 PM
I got back from my errands. I smoked 5 cigarettes in total. I went to the ATM machine to get some money to pay my bills. I found out that I have only 150 US. I was heartbreaking news. I started to sweat profusely and got nervous. It felt like in the past. I feel like crying for no reason, but I didn’t. I thought that I have been there before, the difference is that I used to get depressed and got paralyzed. One starts blaming anything for the situation I am going through. The truth is that I am here because I let myself to have a Sabbatical year. Well, it was almost two years. Like I posted before I loved every second of that, but it has consequences. For once in my life I did not want to worry about anything. I did a good job. But if I am now with only 150 US this is the result of my decisions. Hopefully I am writing everything to help me out to understand erratic patterns of behavior and thinking. I don’t blame myself for having a Sabbatical, I did it, and now I have a story to tell. Those almost 2 years helped me to analyze myself, be calm, enjoy life, think positively, and start writing again. So my Sabbatical was for a good reason. Now, the problem is that I don’t have money; I can’t blame anybody for that. Understanding the decisions I made is important for me. Years ago I would blame destiny or a lack of luck in my life, or worse, thinking that everything was against me. That is a big deal for me. And it took me several years to understand erratic thoughts and behavior. Now, this -I am sure- can happen to anybody anytime. No pill or therapy will solve your problems. It does not matter what triggers depression, what matters is to know yourself. That is a hell of a job 24/7. I am lucky to succeed in my thoughts, not really, there is no luck, and there is only one that tries to be a better person. Is the universe confined in a big ………  to only bother me and not others, NO!

31/05/2017 Wednesday 3:32 PM
There is no electricity since 9:00 AM. I am organizing my stuff for the moving. I smoked 1 more cigarrete. Today is a total of 6. I don’t know if I will be able to move today, since the elevator is off. What a day. No money, no electricity, no job, no moving out. Hey, but I am still alive and writing. Like I said, writing is helping me out to understand my feelings. You don’t know how much.

31/05/2017 Wednesday 5:00 PM
Finally the lights went on. I will be able to move out. Margarita and her sister are helping me out with most things. I feel terrible guilty since I not able to do much with my right hand. Overall, things can be hard sometimes, just find your way out of destructive thoughts. By doing this experimental journal all of you can see how a deal with my demons.

It may seem crazy to do this. Why Flavio? I don’t know. My intimacy is being watched by at least one person, jaja. No matter how many people read this, by opening up I am lowering my defenses, but it is alright, I do it because I want it. Many a times depression is misunderstood for the lack of knowledge about this thing, its medication, its causes and its consequences. Yes, I  think I am crazy, and that craziness give an edge over most people, I just have to control it or regulate it just a bit. Like I said, anything can cause depression, sometimes it does not have a real cause, we just don’t know. For example, for me, in the last few weeks I have been struggling with stupid things, but those things hurt me the most, yes, those little things. And let me tell, those things might be ridiculous to others. We have to understand that what is important for me is not important for you. If we master empathy we can understand others. I am not trying to make feel compassionate with me. I don’t care. I just want you to know how feel, how I think, how I act, my fears and the like. That way, if you have depression you will use as an experiment to realize how easy things are. Things are not complicated as we think. Without tools to fight depression we tend to fall down easily. I have been there many a times. I will never be cured of that genetic dysfunction, but I will try to be better. See, I am not blaming you or me for having depression, I am just telling the world how to deal with, and everybody will have a different way to deal with depression.

Not everything is lost. I write when I feel afraid or anxious. What do you do?
I lighted one more cigarette today, so the count is 7. I thought that right now quitting smoking is secondary, though I will keep it under control. Cigarettes now taste different and I can notice how my body reacts to this. I feel my chest pounding, the flavor is bitter, and my head doesn’t like. Even though I am still smoking my body is reacting differently. I definitively thing I will go further with this challenge.

The truth is that smoking alters my anxiety levels. Thanks God, I am fine. I eat well and that is keeping me focused. Smoking is a bad habit. I have been trying to quit for several years. This time might be the one. I see this addiction in a different way. It is mostly psychological. Difficult to deal with but nonetheless possible.

Wednesday 31/05/2017 06:31 PM
The day is not over yet. Thanks to Margarita and her daughter things are very organized. In more hour the truck is coming with Margaritas’ son Alonso. I must be good to them because they all are helping me. Of course I have to pay them, however, I trust them and I like them to be around me.

I feel better now. If you see I have written quite a bit today. I almost told you everything. Like I said, it helps me when I write. Tomorrow will be another day, surely less hectic. I still have many things to do.

By the time you read this, all will be over, and my hope is to help you understand that not everything is lost. We are not alone and believe me, if you try, things will slowly come your way. This process of auto analysis might never end. It is tiresome but it is worth the effort.

Today I didn’t cry, I almost cry. Today I didn’t fall down. Today I talked a lot to other people. Today I did beggeb my landlord to avoid certain charges. He agreed. Today I did not curse or blame others or destiny because of my situation. Today I think I did better and I hope this is a new beginning for all of us. If I can do it, you can do it too, come look at me! Jaja. Today depression was not triggered. Today was tough for me and my emotions. Now is better. Let’s see what happens tomorrow. I will have a new bathroom, a new roommate, a new dog, a new everything.

Thursday 01/06/2017 08:59 AM
We finished moving 1 truck load today at 1:00 AM. I was tired. But first of all, let me tell you what I did today when I woke up. Since it just too late I slept in my son’s house where most of the stuff was going to stay, because his mother and I bought the furniture. I woke up at 8:00 and took him to the nursery. It was nice to wake up in the same house with him. On the way back, I searched for cigarettes, I went to 4 Bodeguitas (stores), none of them had Pall Mall, and therefore I did not buy one.

My son is living with mom in their grandparent’s house. Since I have to wait for the second loaded truck I waited in the house. Grandpa look at all the furniture that came last night and I said where is she going to fill all this? It looks like he was talkative, and added where are you moving? How much are you paying? And finally and how are planning on supporting yourself? He almost never talks to me, that’s fine, I understand why he does question me all of a sudden.

I slept fine without a TV in front of me. It felt good in one way, it was a different experience. I did not have to rely on the TV to sleep.

Yesterday I talked to Margarita and made me realize how many things had happened to me. I know her from my fifteens. I thought of my relationship with my family, growing up with strict parents, to say the least. There are many things I can’t talk because we just can’t talk, that’s the way it is. But you get my point. So many things that we saw or heard from our parents get stuck in our memories. Things can be positive or negative. In the case it was negative, these images or ideas will stay with almost forever unless you do something to overcome them. It made realize how I thought of things at that time and how later on I could not battle with depression. It was refreshing talking to her. Another thing that surprised me is that margarita has a way solving issues quick and simple. I thought it was too late to go to Ceci´s house after dropping furniture in Letty´s house, but I never thought of bothering Letty and her family. Margarita said: you should go to Letty´s and stay over for the night, then call Ceci and tell her it is too late to go there. I wish I can think that's easy, but I don’t. Thanks to her the night ended at 01:00 AM.

Friday 09/06/2017 08:31 PM
I lost track of this. Mostly I have been moving out. Things that shouldn’t happen happened. Although I was afraid that something will trigger a crisis, hopefully nothing happened. I am alright. A bit sad, but that is nothing in comparison with the new horizons destiny opened for me this month. I am still worried about my near future.

Unfortunately since my last entry things went wrong. The truck never came on time. They have issues and could not deliver everything at once. So yesterday night I moved the las remain of heavy stuff from Lefty’s house to Ceci’s House. Now I can say I am almost done. I have to organize my clothes manly to my new room. I had three rooms for myself, now I have only one. I have cumulated so many things that seem natural, but since I don’t have much space now I feel complicated because I am struggling trying to fit my stuff in the area I have now. Everybody has been nice to me, my son’s family and Ceci, my new roommate. I can complain. I try to keep writing and posting whenever I can. Sometimes I can’t concentrate especially in the morning. I prefer late afternoons and nights, but that is the time that I go to see my kid. I wouldn’t change that, I prefer to be with him. Though I am trying to get him used to watch me writing on my laptop. Now that I see him almost every day we have to manage our normal lives so he can have me playing around and also let me do my stuff.

I could not stop smoking. Depending on the day I am smoking 6 to 8 cigarettes a day. Not bad, but I have been in that position before and I always end up smoking more and more. I feel good now, except my cravings in the morning are the worst. Smoking is stupid, addiction is not. I thought of finishing this journey since I have already moved and the smoking issue is better. I want this to be past. The thing that was helping me not thinking about smoking was writing. But I stopped writing about it. I will publish this in the same blog, but in a different page, so that you can read it and get updates in my journal. You can still read my other posts.

I will fight. I don’t know if I will be successful, but I will keep fighting. I like walking with Bono in the mornings, the only problem is that we head to the Kiosko (informal place where you buy candy, soft drinks, crackers and of course cigarettes) half a mile away to buy cigarettes. It makes me laugh just as I picture you laughing, but it is the truth. Anyway, at least I am buying them one by one, not getting the whole 20 cigarette pack. Bono is very nice to me and always happy to see me. He is making me not worry about germs. Though I like dogs, I never want them indoors for hygiene reasons but this dog is giving me a chance to relax and forget about my phobias.

Sunday 11/06/2015 08:54 PM
Well, I could not quit smoking. I am smoking 8 cigarettes per day. I hope I can keep it like that and reevaluate this in a month. I moved out and things are fine. My intention was to show you what sort of things can be in the mind of any one. Anxiety and Depression will always follow me where ever I go. However, both are not a determination in my life. Sometimes I can control it and sometimes I can’t. The most important thing is to keep fighting my negative thoughts and writing helps me a lot. You can find what floats your boat, it is up to you. I do not consider myself to be an example of successful auto treatment for Depression. You don’t have to follow me, just use my experiences to realize that our problems are not that bad, they are sometimes very foolish, however important for me.

This experience needs an end. This is the end. I soon as I feel new or old fears I will post it here, and then cut/paste this journal into the main page.

Hope this post is usefull for you.
Share if you like it. Comment if you feel like.
Forgive my grammar, English is my second language.


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