Sunday, 25 January 2015

What a week

So I saw the mental health nurse for the second-last time on Wednesday. It sucked. Every second of the appointment felt like time going down the drain. Every second felt urgent. I was acutely aware of the short time left with her - two hours, now one.

Apparently she'd spoken to this other MHN from my past, who immediately remembered me (I'm always doubtful when healthcare professionals say that). She didn't have any of her cards, so she tore out the one taped to her folder and gave it to me.

When I saw the GP the next day, she said she wants to wait a while before putting in the referral to the new MHN, so I can 'adjust and recover' first. I'm not too sure how I'm supposed to feel any better without anyone to help, but whatever. Who knows, maybe it's a good thing, maybe not. I was hoping she'd write the referral then so I didn't have a gap. I just didn't feel like I could speak up. I know it sounds pathetic and takes away any right to complain, but my head just screams 'why bother'.

Anyway, back to the MHN. She talked a lot about Immersion Therapy. She thinks it'd be good for me if I had the right support. Basically it's doing what scares you but doing it in a safe way. My agoraphobia challenge/resolution would be a similar concept, I guess. But to be honest, I think I really need something safer fist.

She told me this story of a girl, and basically she could've been me. Abuse, anxiety, unable to go into town because of the intense fear of seeing this one person in a city of 215,000. She did Immersion Therapy, and slowly worked towards going into town, first in very safe and supported situations, and gradually taking away those safe elements. She pointed out how unlikely it'd be that this girl would ever see their abuser, and that she had not seen him, like it was never a rational fear.

"Because, really, what's the worst that could happen? A panic attack?"
I wanted to yell "No, you bitch, maybe my worst nightmares will come true the next time I see Him? I used to see Him at least once a year up until the point I stopped going in."

But I didn't. I just shook my head, frustrated beyond belief.
"What, then?"
"I have similar reasons for not going into town, and a lot worse could happen."
There's a reason why all of my outings are a fair drive away.
I was obviously upset, and she started probing. Trauma was the last thing I wanted to talk about when I already felt so low.
What scares you?
Who scares you?"

I just wanted to scream. I just wanted her to stop talking about it. It's too painful and too hard and I can't talk about it. Besides, she'll be gone next week, so why should I put myself through it?

"I just don't know what to do any more."
She said that doctors, therapists etc. shouldn't always just tell people what to do. It's better to provide them with the information and resources and let them come to their own conclusions. Not to mention that a lot of people go out there and do the exact opposite

"How would you feel if I said - Bella, you have to...?"
"Like someone wants to help."
"So what if I suggested Equine therapy?" (which we'd been talking about earlier)
"I can't."
"Why not?"
"Agoraphobia... anxiety... groups of people... unsafe places... unsafe people..."

I just feel stuck. They keep suggesting people I should see and things I should do, and I just can't.

"Besides, I don't mean like what type of therapy I should try. I mean I don't know what to do today, this week, next week. I'm just so lost. So stuck. Getting through each day is so hard right now. I just don't know what to do with myself. I can't do anything."

"There's gotta be something out there that can help you... obviously it's not medication."
Obviously! At least I laughed. But you can't blame me for being desperate and still hoping and trying.

She also gave me a couple of relaxation CDs, which are along the same lines as mindfulness and hypnosis, but potentially more appropriate for me than the actual mindfulness CD. I'm just trying to grab as many CDs and pieces of paper as I can. I think I've been hesitating on the mindfulness one because the track we kept listening to asked you to focus on an uncomfortable emotion and identify how it feels in different body parts. And I just can't do that right now. I need things that are more like the 'do one thing at a time, list all the sounds you can hear' kind of mindfulness.

The last few weeks haven't been so great. I feel like I'm on autopilot, just getting through each day.

When I'm not a total wreck or staring blankly into space, I've been spending a lot of time gaming (Heroes of Might & Magic II, currently). A lot. It seems to be my default at the moment. I'm watching too many movies and TV shows. I've watched more Dr Phil episodes in the last week than I probably have in my entire life. Last night I stayed up until 4:30am, just watching Dr Phil episodes on YouTube for 8+ hours.

Anything I can try to immerse myself in. It zones me out so I don't have to think, so I don't have to be in the world. At that moment my existence consists of lying on the couch, chain smoking in the dark, cracking a new can of Coke Zero every two hours.

In other news, the dietician is thankfully back this Tuesday. I've missed her a lot. I'm really not ready to start seeing her less often. I can't even remember the last time we've had three weeks between appointments. She's really so good to me with not missing appointments - most of the time, she'll come in just for my early-bird appointment even if she has to dash off somewhere else. So I'm certainly not complaining that she's had some much-deserved time off.

Then on Wednesday I have my last ever appointment with the mental health nurse. So... yeah.

I feel like I'm so behind on things I should be doing. Including emails and comments, sorry guys, I'm trying to catch up. I'm just not doing things. The days keep disappearing and I've done nothing.

And just as a quick note, this Tuesday 20th marked two years since our beautiful girl Silky passed away. I'll never forget that day, how quickly she was gone, or seeing the moment the light left her eyes. But I'll also never forget her.

This is Billy and Silky, back in 2004.
I found these photos just this week.




  1. i'm so sorry that seeing her for the second time didn't help at all. and it sucked. I could sort of guess, and oh my, the urgency.

    then again, there's always the whole idea of knowing that you're seeing that person for the last time... sometimes, you wish you have that knowledge. I mean last time I saw S./Oliver Wood (and whatever other nickname I used for her), I wasn't aware it was going to be the last. I was just thinking it was the second and there are going to be more. she bought me candy and it made me happy.

    "so she tore out the one taped to her folder and gave it to me." i'm sorry. I have to say that sounds badass for some reason. hopefully that made you giggle or chuckle a bit. my humour sucks in very strong situations like these. <3

    "and takes away any right to complain" NOTHING takes away your right to complain. complain all you want, and i'll listen.

    hmm. reminds me of the whole OCD therapy that comes with those kinds of therapies. unfortunately, there's always that 'moment' that coincides that you associate with an event. like say a person has an obsessive need to wash their hands. they're okay, then they lapse because something bad happened when they didn't (despite it having no true link). like I always tell people, I honestly think my ED is only OCD (mostly because the dysmorphia doesn't exist, and neither does the supposed 'need for control'. it is a need for conciseness in every single aspect of my life. a part of which I delete my post. if one doesn't fit the pattern, then I have to start over with a new pattern. i do not like the idea of having an emotional link to anything. i like the robotic aspect of conciseness. it makes me feel proper and safe (which yet again, is an emotional link, which i do not like to talk about usually but you are special of course).

    i am so sorry that she brought up things like that. i can only imagine how your heart must've dropped in your stomach. oh, my dear. i hope you're feeling a bit better now. she shouldn't have brought any of those things when it was her last time around. she really should've just made it short and sweet.

    (oops. i'm doing that thing again where i write a comment so long that i have to separate it into parts. fuck you, Blogger).

  2. you don't have to be in this world. you can decide if you do or you don't. i hope that one day, you'd want to be around. because i like you, and i want you to be around. i'm so sorry that things are so difficult. i really am. if i could, i'd give you stars in a jar so you'd look at when you feel so low. i'm so sorry that things are so hard, and days are exhausting.

    you don't have to do anything. you don't have to do anything you don't want to. you don't have to force yourself to do D, Z, Y and X. don't feel bad for not doing those things. don't feel bad for where you are. and don't tell me you are a broken record (something I've read time and time again). it's not your fault. you are special and loving and caring (partially because i truly believe that the nicest people in the world hold the most pain in their hearts. because they know how words and actions and small things could hurt).

    i'm glad dietitian is back. i hope seeing her will make you feel better. sometimes, darling, little things like these are stuff you should hold onto, especially when you're feeling so low. <3 i find that when i look for light, it's so difficult to find. every advantage seems like a disadvantage in depression, but i know you'll be able to find something, even something so little, to keep on going. even if it's just us. even if it's just seeing the dietitian. even if it's just that the sun isn't so bright today and you can hide in your blanket for a little while more.

    even if it's me laughing when i saw your 19 gr. bread slices, because man... those are perfect. they really are.

    "The days keep disappearing and I've done nothing." and that's okay. it's PERFECTLY okay.

    i'm so sorry to hear about your loss. i'm just glad Silky had got to have you around, you wonderful creature you.

    -Sam Lupin
    PS. my comment was NOT that long.

  3. Hmmmm I think she wanted to rush to the heart of the matter before she leaves. Maybe for your benefit or maybe for hers.

    You know if you need to get sucked into the YouTube vortex to make it through the day...well its not the worst thing. Seemingly functional people do MUCH worse things to get through their days.

    If you want practical advice I'll suggest this. Get an egg timer. Set it for 15 minutes. Do something you feel you "should" be doing and when the timer goes off that's it. You've put the lid on the "should" part of the day.

    Just a friendly serving suggestion from an anonymous person who cares from afar.

  4. Oh, dear, I'm sorry it wasn't a good experience. I think when she says "adjust and recover" she means not having to see someone else immediately because you may not take the change well? I hope it turns out well. Take my opinion with a grain of salt but - I think the immersion therapy may be good for you. However I didn't like it that she kept pushing you with questions. Maybe the CDs can help a little?
    Youtube is truly addictive.
    Well, I think that you are very considerate to your dietician :) although she does deserve time off.
    I hope you enjoy the last appointment, or at least that it doesn't end up like this one, sweetie >-< you deserve to be happy.
    I'm sorry your dog passed away - she seemed like a good companion. Do you still have any pets?


  5. No words today Bella
    Just that I can relate so much
    Especially around zoning out and not wanting to be part of the world
    I wish I could sit down with you and just listen to you
    I think you really need to talk about what scares you
    I can tell that you are petrified

    Well that was more words than I thought
    Love you my dear Bella
    Always with ya
    If not in body
    Then in spirit x

  6. In my program the saying is that we as counselors are there to help the client find what's creating and sustaining the problem. Giving advice is filling a need that you as the counselor have and it's not in the best interest of the client who must decide on their own. You know, I love you to death of course, but you do have to come to a point in your life where you have to decide to go out. She said recommended immersion and equine therapy and you shot her down on both which kind of shows that telling you what to do doesn't look helpful. My honest opinion as a former victim myself is to talk about it. Talk to your mom or a friend and work up building a relationship with a professional. You're too young to be living enslaved like this Bella. The world is wide and beautiful and amazing and it breaks my heart that you're letting it keep you locked up. He doesn't have power over you anymore and I want desperately for you to know that, to go out of your house on a whim and get ice cream or whatever and laugh, smile, and feel the sun on you and not feel scared. You're at the point where YOU have to change. You can have mental health professionals one after the other after the other. They can switch your meds, recommend therapy and treatments and all this stuff but it comes down to you. I understand the desperation because I've been there, but I think you know it's time for you to do the work. There has to be a change and you're searching. I get that it's scary. Believe me, I still struggle with change, but learning some of the mindfulness techniques to help the disassociation and maybe doing some relaxation techniques from CBT in preparation for discussing your trauma would be best. I'm not an expert yet but I've got some personal experience from trauma and I want you to get to the place where the weight starts to come off and you begin to understand the peace that you can feel from talking about it and letting it go.

    I hope that you won't think that I'm trying to be a jerk. I guess I get pretty earnest about it because we've been reading each others' blogs for about two years now and we have had some things in common and so I know, to an extent, what it's like to live life of fear and self-hate. I don't want that for you. I go to school and learn about this stuff and I get so excited like, you can do this! You really could! so it's a mix of that and frustration because this isn't the life you deserve. I love you and hope you feel better.

  7. Oh Bella, it breaks my heart to read about your struggles. You are so kind and beautiful and good. I'm so sorry things get taken from you and that you feel so stuck. I wish there was a way to unstick you, and it pains me that there's not. I love you Bella, and I sincerely hope that things start looking up for you soon. After such a terrible week, how could they not? Good luck on writing your letter, I know you don't have much hope for it but at least you'll know you did everything in your power. Please try to remember that you are always surrounded by so much love and support and we are all always here for you.
    Hang in there, dear girl.
    <3 Lee

  8. I am so sorry things are so horrendous at the moment. I wish I could make it better.

  9. The best mindfulness thing I've found is called "5, 4, 3, 2, 1." I've recruited people in my life to ask if I want to do this when I'm having a panic attack or flashbacky shit, or otherwise really distressed. We take turns. 5 things you see. 5 things you hear. 5 things you feel. Then 4 and so on. You're allowed to repeat from the previous round but it works better if you look for other things. The 5 things you feel, can be an emotion in your body like the meditation you described or something like "my toes tingling" or "my arm resting on the table." You can play by yourself too, and it helps to play it when you're not too distressed aswell because then it is easier to remember to do it when you're really not okay.

    I'm sorry that the MH nurse leaving has turned everything upside down. Numbing out is okay, you are coping, and you need to feel safer and if gaming and dr. Phil is working then so be it. Hopefully, when you're back on track with the dietician you'll have more space to process all the change. If you ever need to ramble-vent my fb is open. LOVES.