Adding more time to the schedule

I’m trying to add more streaming time to my schedule and I’m testing the waters this week to see what times might suit me the best. I’ve been doing the evening streams and I have tried to keep a game rotation of the games that my viewers seem to like the most. But, like I’ve said in an earlier post, Diablo 3 (D3) is the game that single handedly draws the biggest audience to my channel. A lot of my watchers also play D3 themselves, which of course means that most of them are only interested in seeing me play that particular game.

But I have been reluctant to skip all the other games and dedicate my whole channel to a single game. Don’t get me wrong, I’m impressed with the channels that can pull that off, but I know myself well enough to realize that if I don’t have a game rotation I will get sick and tired of just playing that one game. I am a variety gamer at the my very core and the genre is secondary. I play games on the basis of them being interesting enough to peak my curiosity and wanting to play it, even if I do have genres I know I’m less interested in like first person shooters (FPS) and horror games.

So my goal with adding time to my streaming schedule is grounded in the idea that I want to give D3 more time on the air but not at the expense of all the other games. The best solution I could come up with was to give D3 the majority of the evening streams (as that is the busiest time) and play other games during early afternoon streams. That way everyone have something to watch as I need to be live on the evenings with D3 to interact with my viewers but not necessarily with games such as Stardew Valley or Recettear. The backlog of past streams carries quite a lot of my past sessions so it’s easy to go back if they wish to see a specific game.

I’m thinking of putting the afternoon stream somewhere between 13 to 17 once autumn rolls around and all the people with regular jobs return from their vacations but for now I’ve streamed 14 to 18 instead. I hope it works out fine and that this is something I can commit to. It would mean I’m doing a regular 8 hours a day, 40 hours a week thing.. and that is something I know I can’t do on a regular job due to my depression and anxiety. But I wont celebrate until I’ve thoroughly tried it out and done a serious evaluation of the situation.

Everyday update – Twitch, migraine and Cruising

Yesterday was a fun streaming day. Like with any job, you have your ups and downs. Some days are really slow with no viewers or no interaction with your audience no matter how hard you try. I’ve had a couple of these slow kind days for roughly a week now, but yesterday my chat was moving along nicely and I had several viewers at most times. I got hosted by two rather large (compared to me) channels and this gave me several new watchers and a bunch of new followers. It was mostly new viewers from my new clan but where they came from doesn’t really matters, I’m happy to have them all if they choose to follow me.

I’m doing better on the migraine front even if the pain hasn’t gone away completely. I didn’t take the second dose yesterday, didn’t feel that I needed it. But I’ve just taken the second dose since the pain was still active this morning after breakfast. Sometimes I do have a slight headache before breakfast so I felt it was best to wait with it until I’ve gotten some food into the system. I think I need visit the pharmacy and buy a second package and have it at home in case the migraine breaks out again or doesn’t want to go away after today’s dose. But right at this very moment I’m waiting for the effect to set in.

I’m feeling kind of stressed though, today is the famed Cruising day. During the day there’s a big motor show and swapping/selling of vintage cars. As the day progresses the cars leave the motor show and slowly drives through the city to show off their prized pearls. Most of the town are on their feet to look at the cars cruising through the city center and it’s overall a very festive event with food and beer at every establishment. Later on the party moves out to the streets and the sidewalks are littered with drunken party goers.

Now, I’m not the one to go to this kind of event, be it the one in the day or the one at night, but I do take some precautions like moving our car to a less public area earlier in the day as we live along the cruising route (we can view the cars from our kitchen window, which we often do.. for about 5 minutes and then we’ve had our fill). I also make sure I have done all my chores long before the vintage cars leave the motor show to be able to stay away from the crowds as much as possible. Navigating among this kind of crowd is usually not that hard, it’s mostly just tedious and tiresome.

Follow-up from yesterday

Before 9 o’clock this morning I had spoken to two nurses and one doctor. It wasn’t my regular doctor (the surgeon) but another of her colleagues that called me. But speaking with the first nurse, who had no clue who I was or what my case entailed was mostly enervating (I mean, it’s not like there’s a big fat journal on me in their systems >:| ). I had to repeat my data and info three times before she even began to understand why I needed to speak to a doctor on that specific ward. She suggested that I contact a GP instead of someone from the gynecological ward since it was a headache I had and that’s not something that was normally handled by a gynecologist/surgeon.

I spent 35 minutes coxing this woman to leave the nurse over at the surgeons office a notice that I wanted them to contact me and I’m impressed with myself for not loosing it as my migraine only got worse during this call. If I could have, I would have contacted the surgeons office directly, but since it’s summer and they’re low on personnel, all the calls are handled through this communication center for the whole region.

The second nurse was a nurse from the actual ward and even if she didn’t know all the details from my case, she knew enough to alert the doctor in charge that I needed to get in contact with them before the end of the day. The doctor called me 45 minutes later. Once I’ve gotten hold of the doctor I was given clear directives (hallelujah!) right of the bat as she knew who I was, why I was calling, that I had been in contact with 1177 yesterday and that I was to call if the migraine didn’t go away during the night.

I’m to stop using the gel for a week or so, at least until the migraine goes away, and then try them out again. If the migraine comes back I’m to stop using the gel completely and try another form of the drug, a pill this time. The doctor also informed me that she had contacted the manufacturer of the patches and while the production is completely stopped now, the issue should be solved in a few months. Hopefully I’ll be able to go back to the patches at the end of the year.

I was also given counselling on how to handle the migraines and we decided on a nasal spray that wouldn’t put as much strain on my already overloaded system but still help me with the pain. I’ve taken the first dose of the nasal spray just before writing this and it says on the packaging that I should feel the effect within the first 15 minutes. If the pain persists I can take a second dose approx. 2 hours after the first one.

Writing this has taken more then 15 minutes and it seems like the pain has gone away somewhat. I don’t know if it is completely gone, but looking at the screen and listening to soft music doesn’t hurt as much any more. My nausea also seems to be gone, which is a huge relief. Maybe I don’t have to go full vampire today and lay in a darkened room hissing each time a beam of light enters the room.

To menopause or not – part 2

On Monday this week I starting taking the new hormone supplement that I wrote about earlier. I have been using the hormone patches since my operation in 2015 but because they have stopped manufacturing it, I was prescribed another brand and switched from patches to a gel I was supposed to spread on my thigh every day. I didn’t give it a second thought when I, late on Tuesday, got a splitting headache. I have had problems with migraines since my early teens, often around the time I had my periods, but in later years the migraines have been scarce for a number of reasons.

But, I went to bed and woke up with the same headache yesterday and today. When I was caving in to the pain and thought I’d go to the pharmacy and get some heavy duty painkillers my eyes landed on the box with the hormone gel in it. I did read the leaflet that comes with the package before I took it but hadn’t connected the headache as a side effect of starting on a new drug. I quickly went through the list of side effects and read that I immediately should stop taking the drug and contact a doctor if I experienced intense headaches or migraine.

Since this hadn’t come to my attention until late in the afternoon today I was unsure just how quickly I could get hold of the doctor who prescribed it or even a nurse from the surgeons office. Instead I called the number for nationwide medical counseling (1177) to get advice and an professional opinion if I needed to rush to the hospital or not. The nurse at 1177 got hold of a nurse at the surgeons and it was decided that I was to call them directly, early tomorrow morning. But if I felt extremely woozy, passed out or collapsed in combination with throwing up or getting an even worse headache then the one I experienced now, it was important that we call an ambulance right away.

I’m somewhat worried, of course, who wouldn’t be? My head hurts something bad, no pain killers seem to work and I need to be conscious of how I’m feeling until I get hold of the surgeon tomorrow. I hope there’s no more to it then that I need to stop taking the gel to get rid of the problem. But if the gel doesn’t work, I have extremely limited options as to how I’m going to keep my menopause at bay. Hopefully my surgeon still have some aces up her sleeve because it seems like I’m running out of options here.

To outsmart yourself

Living with near constant anxiety leaves a big impact on how you live your life. I’ve had to cancelled many occasions due to the fact that I just want to hide underneath the covers in bed or stow myself away in a closet. It’s most noticeably when I plan things with friends. Too many times I’ve had to text them with an apology and say that my anxiety is overpowering me and won’t let me leave the apartment. Luckily, I have friends who are understanding and doesn’t make a scene about it. But that doesn’t mean I’m nice to myself, I’m usually the one who’s putting a insanely high standard towards myself then anyone else.

There are two occasions in recent memory that comes to mind: one where I had to cancel a larp (live action role play) and a visit to the local spa. The occasions where with different friends and where of different scales, obviously. The scale of the event usually don’t matter when it comes to the intensity of the anxiety, what usually matters is how early I learn of the event and if I have time to prepare myself for it. The more time I have, the better I can counter the anxiety. Anything that’s a week in advance usually isn’t a problem.

But some times there’s just never gonna be enough time, some things are burned into my memory tainted with the distinct feeling of anxiety and panic. Visiting certain cities, going to special events and so on, always brings forth specific feelings. The best I can do on these occasions is to just go anyway and pop all anti anxiety meds I have. Today is such a day, I’m off to meet a friend and then we’ll head off to the local spa to float around in their bubble pool until we look like raisins. There’s nothing to feel anxious about, but it’s still there. It has nothing to do with my friend or the thing we’re doing, I love both the person and the activity.. so I’ll just have to stomp this feeling down and go anyway. I know I’ll have a blast, I just have to overcome my own damn mind.

Rift, my new clan & possible schedule changes

I love to play Diablo 3. There’s something with that game that keeps me coming back again and again. But I sadly I haven’t fired the game up as often since I don’t have anyone to play with (apart from when the game is in between seasons and I take an official break from the game). Playing alone is only that much fun in the long run whether you play hardcore or not. But I have been hanging around another streamer that also plays a lot of Diablo 3. He and his clan mates often play together and a few of them stream together.

So, I gathered my courage and asked if I could join the clan. I needed to gather my courage because I’m kinda shy and feel uncomfortable asking for things like this, even if I had gotten the vibe that they weren’t opposed to the idea. To my great relief I quickly got the response that I was most welcome in the clan and I joined up with them the very same afternoon. I’m therefore most probably going to switch from playing hardcore (if you die, your char is gone) to playing softcore (no limit, your char is gone only if you delete it). But this isn’t a problem if I get more people to share the experience with.

Other then that I’ve been pondering adding more time to my schedule, as I’ve talked about before. Streaming 4 hours 5 days a week have been working fine but I’m thinking I might add a second session on the days I already stream. I haven’t decided how long these sessions should be or on how many days I would want to do them on but since I’ve noticed that Diablo 3 is single handedly drawing the biggest audience, I’d like for it to get more time on the air, preferably without removing other game titles. So, I was thinking that perhaps I could play Diablo on most of the evening sessions and play any other game during a day session. But I haven’t decided on a rotation for anything, whether it be games or time, it is still a bunch of loose ideas floating around in my mind.

Personal space invader – Begone!

Being a personality online can sometimes be harsh. But if you move about in this sphere though, you to learn how to handle the comments, attitudes and name calling. The most infuriating thing you can do against someone who seems hellbent on getting your attention, by calling you all sorts of imaginative and colorful names, is to outright ignore them and deny them that pleasure. And while this is still something I face on almost a daily basis I’ve moved into trickier fields. I’m trying to learn how to handle the persons with good intentions, the ones throwing help my way just because they perceive something as a problem that needs solving.

Someone who is being obnoxious and spewing hate your way are much easier to just dismiss as their actions seldom are socially accepted and drawing a line there is expected of you. But how do you handle someone who thinks that their actions are justified, but in reality is infringing on your personal space (preferably without burning bridges)? It is very hard for me to just say “No thanks, I don’t need help” or “No thanks, I don’t want that”. It feels like it’s an argument waiting to happen as they are just trying to be nice, offering me help. But where do I draw the line? How do I make sure I see the ones who are genuine and for real against those who are just ..not? My voice is apparently “cute and endearing”, so me getting help when I haven’t asked for it is not something new.

Meeting a conundrum like this as a behavioural scientist is quite.. strange. I know how to handle whatever situation friends and family happen to be in, but it’s so hard to apply this on myself and know what to do. But as always, I think I already know the answer; the line must be drawn where I’m comfortable with it being drawn and I must be the one who draws it. But I don’t think that the drawing of the line is the hard part, the hard part is handling it without hurting others.. and I need to mull that over a few more times until I’m satisfied with my own behavior.