Monday, 8 August 2016

Processing...

On top of the past couple of weeks being so busy, I've actually been a bit of a social butterfly (well, perhaps a caterpillar), which is rare for me.

First off, I've still not really had time to sit and think to process the appointment with my new psychologist, but I thought I'd fill you guys in a bit on how it went. I've been putting it off for months now, so I guess it's about time.

My GP took me to the appointment, picking me up and driving me home, on her own time, which I'm very grateful for. She was in the appointment with me for all but 10 minutes of the hour-long appointment.

She did most of the talking, which definitely made the 'getting to know you' part easier. I zoned out a little as she gave the psych a rundown of my history - big life events, diagnoses, past treatment, etc.. She gave her two letters from psychiatrists I've seen in the past, which made me majorly uncomfortable.

One was from my first psychiatrist, who I started seeing at the age of 12. He never really knew what was going on, and never really cared to know. He was just oblivious. On the way home, I asked my GP if I could see the letters at our next appointment, which she said is fine. She just thought they'd be triggering, but I'd rather know what this new psych's being told.

The psych told me a bit about herself, her history, what areas she's most interested in, that sorta stuff. To be honest, I'm not sure if she'll be able to help me. She doesn't specialize in any of the areas I most need help with, like EDs, trauma, or addiction.

To her credit, my GP told her straight-up not to push me about AN, that the dietician's monitoring me, and that they know pressuring me just doesn't work.

My GP left the room, and the psych asked me about things like the pets, sewing, baking... It felt so pointless, so tiring, that each word was an effort.

I told her I didn't really want to be there. That I don't know if I want help anymore, or if I can even be helped. That I just want everyone to leave me alone.

When I got home, mum had just gotten home from the walk that busted her arms.

I'm supposed to see the psych again this Thursday, but I really don't know if I'll go. Every two weeks might be a little much.

On the upside, my brother added mum and I to his Uber account, and he's going to cover costs of transport while mum can't drive. I can't express what a huge relief this is, as I'll actually be able to get to my regular appointments. I can't wait to see the dietician tomorrow.


Everything was too hectic to post about it last time, but on the day mum broke her arms, we'd gone out for coffee with my Great Aunt, Aunty D, that morning.

They've been going out for coffee each fortnight recently, partly to get her out of her house and routine. Usually it's been in busy places like town or shopping centers, which I just can't do, but this time they were going to a relatively new cafe in a quiet residential area, so I jumped at the opportunity to see her.

Earlier this year, my Great Uncle passed away. At the time, I had pneumonia which ended up triggering a COPD exacerbation, and was quite ill. I put off going to hospital in the hopes I'd be able to attend his funeral. Unfortunately, the morning of, I could barely move or breathe. Between being unable to walk even short distances, and not wanting to risk getting anyone else sick, it was decided I shouldn't go. I sat crying in A&E while my mum and brother said their goodbyes. The best I could do was post a message to the online memorial, and this was my first opportunity to see her since.

Mum and I got there early and found a table where I could hide in the corner. I was so happy when I saw Aunty D walking by the window.
We both got up to give her a hug, and she said  "It's so good to see you out and about!"

I ordered a long black, and they both had cappuccinos. There was only sugar at the table, but that's why I take my liquid stevia with me whenever I go out.

We were just going to have coffee, then mum suggested sharing a slice of cake between us. We went to the counter and looked at all the cakes and muffins and cheesecakes. Then, AD spotted an amazing looking slice, and announced
  "Let's just all have a piece of hazelnut slice each!"

It was like my grandma's caramel slice, but with pieces of hazelnut through the caramel base instead of crushed biscuits. It was indulgent, but I'm going to try making some of my own at some point.

We were there for over a hour. I mostly just listened, but I did tell her about my tapestry that I've been working on on-and-off for the past two years - 'Shearing at Newstead', by Australian artist Tom Roberts. I'm only about 1/4 of the way through, even after spending some 90 hours on it. Mum did a matching one years ago, called 'Shearing the Rams', but AD's lounge room is full of Australiana tapestries. Next time I see her, I'm going to take mine to show her what I've done so far.

I was actually a little worried that I might get emotional and start blubbering about Uncle, but the last thing I wanted to do was upset her, so I had extra meds beforehand and kept my mouth shut. Missing the funeral, I don't feel like I got closure. It didn't seem real, that he was gone, and in a way, it still doesn't. I worry about going over to her house and not seeing him or his armchair there. That could very well make me crack.

I'm not sure how often I'll be joining for coffee. It depends on where AD chooses to go, whether or not I'll be able to. Once mum's healed up, I want to go to the op shop AD volunteers at to do some rummaging, and of course, sit out the back and have a cuppa with all the lovely old ladies she works with. I haven't been there in years, or to any op shops, really.

Long Black and Hazelnut Slice

Then on Saturday, I woke up to a message from R, asking if I'd be free that evening to catch up for a few drinks. On top of everything else that's been going on, it was a bit overwhelming, but I figured the break would do me good. So I spent the day doing the whole bath/shave/pluck eyebrows/straighten hair/paint nails/makeup routine to try and make myself resemble a human being again.

I'll admit, I did have a few little glasses of wine before he picked me up, just to ease the nerves and make me more chatty. Social lubricant, and all that. I didn't drink much while I was there, though, and my tolerance for alcohol has really improved in recent months. Since I stopped smoking synthetics (six weeks today!), I've been having a few glasses to end the day once or twice a week.

Being out in the country has a certain peacefulness to it. It's so calm and quiet, it feels like a world away.

I had some pretty intense nightmares - they've been getting worse lately - but I just had an extra couple of PRNs, cuddled up to Boo, and tried to get back to sleep.

It was really good to get a break and not stress for 18 hours, though. Now I'm settling back into reality & routine, with busy days and little rest. I've been really reaching my limit the past few days, as far as increased responsibilities around the house go, and have had a few breakdowns and snappy moments.

I can push myself to try and do these things because I know it's only short-term. If I had to do this much work everyday for the rest of my life, I just couldn't do it. I have enough trouble with personal care, let alone housework, cooking, laundry, etc.. I can't wait until this 6-8 weeks is over.




xxBella

9 comments:

  1. I'm glad you're getting out and spending time with people. I know for me it generally helps even when I don't want to go. I also think you should give the psychologist another chance. It's hard to judge if something can help the first appointment. I always hate that first session with a therapist or doctor because it's like condensing my whole life into a short period of time and that means telling a lot of things I'm ashamed of or don't like talking about. Hopefully it will get better once the introduction stuff is over and you can share things as you are ready.

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  2. I truly believe any psych can help if they're really good AND you are keen. Really make them do their job. Especially be as specific as you can. Start small. Maybe say, "I dont like answering the phone....".

    Like the root causes are the same and anyone intuitive can kind of get a vibe for the situation. In fact a general psych workup might actually be better than the zoned in approach. I'm seeing a lot of anxiety behaviours here and they can definately help with that.

    Like i knew someone who had spent time in a "group home" (state run 'orphanage') as a baby and they had shocking anxiety as an adult (puberty onset)which manifested as compulsive lying even though they couldn't even remember being in the home. Anyway the treatment was basically the same as OCD, ED or what have you.

    Man i sound really bossy.

    I'm sorry. I'm just exited for you as I'm sure you're going to get something out if this.

    Xx

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  3. Great job on six weeks off synthetics!
    It's also awesome how you're pushing your comfort zone. I really believe that we have to be uncomfortable for our zone to expand. It's like a muscle we can exercise.

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  4. i hope that you're able to handle these letters. i really feel like this could backfire immensely, but i hope that it doesn't.

    i think you can always be helped. to be honest, i wouldn't be there. it sounds like you've had so many new people come in and then they just disappear or they can't help, or they try to but... *shrugs*

    i'm glad that you're able to go to your regular appointments. you really need that right now. what with how much you have to do, you don't need one MORE thing to worry about.

    i love that woman. she sounds like a terrific human. i'm so sorry that things didn't work out the way that you'd wanted. i don't think people ever "cope" with a loss. they just... learn to deal with it. i don't think it's something people can ever move forward from. that saying, i really am so sorry for your loss and honestly, it is not your fault. i want to say that because i know your head can be a bit mucky sometimes, but it really isn't.

    i'm so glad you've gone out. i also want to say that is a smashing looking slice for a (smashing) looking girl.

    GOOD JOB FOR SIX WEEKS OFF TODAY! YES! that's my gal.

    i can't wait until these 6-8 weeks are over either. they seem way WAY too much for you to do.

    (side note: it's not stupid to feel like it's too much. it is. it's a lot. and it's okay to feel overwhelmed by it, because it IS a lot. and it's exhausting. and i appreciate everything you do. you are a very incredible human being.)

    i can't be arsed reread this comment but i do want to let you know that i hope i've not said anything that makes your day any worse. hope you smile today and i hope i've not offended you. i absolutely adore you to bits (i've probably said this a few times) but it's cause i rlly do.

    feel free to tell me anything.







    -Sam Lupin

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  5. I forgot to say I'm glad you went to see your aunty.

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  6. BOOOOOOOOOOO - Saffy says hello. Please keep doing a wonderful job of soothing Bella when she needs it okay? BELLA I LOVE YOU I'll comment better on messanger later xxx

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  7. I'm so proud of you for getting out and about! I hope you can keep doing it and have some amazing times and make some wonderful memories! Take care beautiful xoxo

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  8. comment reply:

    "Why did I not get pictures of the cakes and coffee?! :P" maybe because Percy forgot to send these pictures. bad Percy.

    awww, that little kangaroo story is adorable. it makes me grin.

    THE NUTELLA IS BRILLIANT. but not as brilliant as you of course. i still can't believe it. whenever i open my fridge and see it, i do a little inner squee.

    "Ooh, is that Mich's drawing?! The final product is amazing." VERY! i am still astonished. i can't believe i have Mich's Burrow drawing on my shelf. i am a very very very loved prefect.

    <3

    xxPercy ;)

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  9. Just popping in to say I am so proud of you Bella. 6 weeks is amazing! And the psych appointment and getting out and about. Loads of love sent your way.

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