Wednesday, 14 May 2014

It's Time to Talk

I met with the Mental Health Nurse for the first time today, after putting it off for the last six months.

It's been years since I've seen anyone with mental health training. The last time I saw a psychiatrist was three years ago, when I was sectioned. I haven't seen anyone regularly and willingly in even longer, since before my ED. Between the last psychiatrist being nothing short of cruel, and the fear of being sectioned or hospitalized again, I've kept as far away from MH professionals as I could. It took a long time for me to even trust GPs again - I hadn't seen one for years until after I started seeing my dietician. But I understand it puts my team in a hard place, and my dietician and GP have been amazing to've seen me for nearly two years now without any MH support.

It was just a quick appointment, maybe fifteen or twenty minutes, and my GP was there too at the start. It was very much a 'get to know you' appointment, to be continued in a month. I sucked at talking, as usual, and kept my eyes firmly fixed downward. My GP started by talking a bit about my history over the last ~18 months. The MH nurse asked about diagnoses and I mentioned anorexia, anxiety, depression, C-PTSD, agoraphobia... I really wasn't keen on talking, so she and my GP were just going to have a better look through my file. 

She did give a good analogy though. Basically, she was saying that with anxiety your mind's constantly worried about the future, and with depression you're set in the past, and either way it stops you from living life in the moment. She thinks ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy) and mindfulness could be helpful to bring me back to the now. I learnt a little years ago, in non-ED inpatient, just things like stopping and listing all the sounds you can hear, but I've never really known how to apply it. So she might be onto something there. 

In sickness news, the antibiotics don't seem to have helped much at all, and today's my last day on them although I'm on prednisolone for another week. I still feel as congested and phlegmy, I still feel as feverish and exhausted as before. My temperature was back up at 39°c last night although the nausea hasn't been too bad. When I saw my GP last week, my oxygen saturation was up to 96% which is actually a considerable improvement from 95%. Overall I haven't declined but I haven't improved either. I'm seeing her again next week, but I don't think it's worth seeing her earlier unless the pain/shortness of breath gets worse. 

Oh, and I'm finally coming off the Zyban (useless antidepressant) in the next week, and my Mirtazapine's back up to a full dose, although that doesn't exactly help either. I still don't know if there's plans to try different antidepressants or not. Again, it's difficult when I haven't seen any MH professionals for so long. I don't know.

My dietician still doesn't want me exercising which is really getting to me. Without it, I've been smoking even more to try to drown out the anxiety, which is kinda counterproductive. But I've barely exercised for nearly a month now. I haven't weighed myself for two weeks because I'm too afraid to. I'm already dreading how hard it'll be to start exercising again after such a long break, but c'est la vie. 

I'm actually kind of itching to get out of the house, after not going out during April. It's been six weeks since my piercing! Mum's planning a day trip to the cheese factory soon (last night we apparently ran out of the 6kg/13lbs of vintage cheddar we bought in December), so I might tag along if my chest clears up. If not, I'd still like to do more bushwalks. We're already halfway through the month though, and I would like to at least try to get out and about. 



  1. good. good. you have updated. i felt relief surge through me when i saw that you had updated.
    "I met with the Mental Health Nurse for the first time today, after putting it off for the last six months." very proud.
    "Basically, she was saying that with anxiety your mind's constantly worried about the future, and with depression you're set in the past, and either way it stops you from living life in the moment." i like this analogy. however, i am one of those weird people that rarely, if ever, have anxiety-related attacks and whatnot.
    i like that. i think she may have something there too.
    i'm sad that you are still sick, honey. sounds like it's beating the hell out of you.
    i'm very glad you're going to get off the Zyban!
    you lose either way. that's how it's like unfortunately with that situation. shhhhhh. you do not need to exercise. it's okay. i'm sad you might be feeling icky and annoyed and whatnot. and i don't think that your weight would have changed much.
    i came up with a realisation that when you are sick, your body is forced to expend more energy to fight off infection anyway. i get very, very hungry when i am sick most of the time (unless the sickness makes me tired then sleep > food always). then again, i'm just weird in general.
    "I'm actually kind of itching to get out of the house, after not going out during April." this makes me very very pleased!
    i just choked. 6 kilos of cheese fuck.
    that's very nice to hear, sweetie.
    i hope you're resting well and eating a good enough amount (i won't put a number on it). i'm hoping you're eating something, dear x

    i miss you quite a lot. i love you. :) do take care of yourself. i hope your chest clears up for cheese day (omg the alliteration).
    speaking of cheese, i'm planning on buying me some gouda and irish cheddar myself today.

    -Sam Lupin

  2. Not all psychologist's are bad.. Admittedly, it is hard to find good ones. Good luck with everything <3

  3. I think it is a really good decision for you to get assessed by a mental health professional. For starters, you were very young the last time you've been assessed by someone other than a GP. It's very difficult to even get an accurate diagnosis for someone who is under 18. I have worked as a mental health professional (and am also in long-term recovery from an eating disorder), and I can honestly say that a GP does not have enough experience in prescribing the appropriate medications for acute psychiatric illness since they do not have enough training to be able to make an accurate diagnosis of such conditions. In order to be treated with medications that can actually help you, you need to be assessed by someone who has extensive knowledge about which psych meds are most effective in treating certain conditions. In the United States, Zyban is completly contraindicated for treatment of eating disorders. It also seems to me that the Mirtazapine has not proven to be effective, and there are many medications which are more commonly used to treat anorexia and underlying conditions. I know you are afraid to be treated my mental health professionals due to the fear of being hospitalized or sectioned, but perhaps you are avoiding the very people (some better than others) that could be able to help you and therefore suffering as a consequence. I pray that the mental health nurse can provide you with someone who is caring and knowledgable who can also accurately assess your condition so you have the opportunity to improve and live the life you so desperately deserve.

  4. I'm so proud of you for going! It's so tough to open up but just showing up, even if you couldn't really talk is so awesome. I really admire that.


    you make me happy. and this made me happy.

    -Sam Lupin

  6. I'm so happy you spoke to the mental health nurse, and she sounds really good, especially if she is recommending ACT, that may work really well for you.
    I'm sorry to hear you're not really feeling any better, but it's awesome to hear you wanting to get out a little more. A bush walk would be fantastic, I hope you feel better <3 x

  7. proud of you to meet the mental health nurse. Good job honey, really good! I also like the teraphy form she suggested, it sounds like wise one and teaches how to be present... I could try that too. I believe that it really helps to get in touch with yourself.

    I hope you're feeling better.

  8. i love you too. i ran out of cute things to post but whenever i see one, i immediately post it onto your blog.
    shhhhhhhhhhhhhh. don't worry. you don't have to reply or anything. i just am content with knowing that you're resting well and doing well.
    coffee and soup is amazing. i like the black stuff truth be told, but what i really crave is the standard very milky coffee all the time. i'm so weak i cannot handle the black stuff all the time. plus, i have a regurgitation problem so when i don't eat for a while, i puke back stomach acid + some liquid. with black coffee = shitty.
    i eat plain cheese, but the real goodness of cheese comes in a sandwich. or in a salad. or in pasta. it is purely there to accentuate taste of other things. eating it on a mono was sickening.
    0_0 6kg of cheddar.
    yeah. i'm sticking with my 600g. and after these are finished, i don't think i'll want to buy anymore for a while. xD
    100g loss yessssss. i don't mind honestly. i'm at my LW. and you know how bitchy it is going down after hitting the LW. and especially after you've been losing weight for so long. >_> i had so much to lose. when i got down to 65, going from there to anything lower was absolute torture.
    (You and your tiny waist. I think I've told you before, my waist wasn't 25" until I got down to 55kg, urgh, not fair. I think I'm big-waisted, in comparison to my bust and hips.)
    okay this made me laugh.
    i think it's because of my frame. i have a very large frame. my body fat percentage comes out at 21.3%. i have BMI of 23.9, so it's nothing too drab. it's interesting though how frame changes everything. S. has a BMI of 16.7 and she's got a 25 inch waist as well and 35 inch hips.
    i have huge hips in comparison to my waist. nice if i like that sort of thing. i want less curves and more straightness. i am very pear-shaped and i will probably have a 24 inch waist quicker than i would 37 inch hips.
    my stomach is feeling fine right now. though i ate too many Quest bars :P

    have a gorgeous day, gorgeous girl. <3

    -Sam Lupin

  9. I hate that you look down when you talk to people... You should be proud to be you girl! Your'e fantastic! Good old mindfulness. If I had a dollar for every time I heard that in my classes I could probably pay for grad school! ha. I'm interested in learning more about this because I haven't yet heard of it. I'm more of a CBT fan myself and I think that's what I'm going to use in my practice but I think this is fantastic for you to look into. You gotta be in the hear and now lady! You gotta embrace YOU. I love you to the moon and back!

  10. Bella <3 So happy to see the start of some MH counseling. I'm right along side you trucking through it too. I hope this experience is better than your previous ones. I just wanted to stop by. I don't have a ton of blogger friends but you always stick in my mind. I have been thinking about you during this break that I took and I'm just so glad to see you here and working on the hard stuff. As usual take care <3 Jade