Category Archives: Life

Holiday success, moral responsibilities of MH workers… Interesting

Hey guys! Long time no see!

Im back from my holiday now. It actually went surprisingly well:

  • I didn’t have any fights with my Mum.
  • I didn’t need to go to the hospital for self harming.
  • I got anxious, but managed only light self harm.
  • I survived all the people, and minimised my social interactions as much as possible.
  • I used all of my “healthy techniques” – like strong smells (vix vapo rub!) Tactile squidgey things, headphones, and deep breathing!
  • I survived the plane ride, and even made friends with the lady next to me!
  • I was still happy at the end of the holiday

So anyway, I’ve been in a pretty good headspace since then. I think my combination of meds is finally working a bit. I have even planned out what I want to do next year (part time uni) and have gone to a course advisory session to plan it all out properly. My awesome flatmate came with me to support me, as there is no way I could have managed it on my own.

The only problem with that, was that we ended up walking home, because the bus was taking too long. My POTS had a hissy fit, and then when we walked into a shop, I started having a panic attack as well, and the hyperventilation plus tachycardia made me faint.

Its taken me 3 days so far to recover from the physical exhaustion of it all, and I still don’t think I’m out of the woods just yet. Heart rate and fatigue is off the charts! But I have also noticed that my mental state has not been as good since then either. First, my mood plunged and I was feeling hopeless and empty, and then more pronounced today was gripping/paralysing anxiety – even though I wasn’t doing anything to provoke it, just sitting in my bedroom. Its been quite intense!

I started thinking about self harming to ease the anxiety. I didn’t, but reflected on how weird it is – most people would be encouraged to seek professional help, or ring the crisis line if they were having thoughts of harming themselves to the extent that I do. People that self harm regularly to the extent that I do would usually be hospitalised. But I seem to get away with it. It’s probably because I deal with it myself and am not waving it infront of medical professionals faces all the time by getting them to suture it.

Im not saying that people who do get medical attention for their wounds are attention seeking at all. I more am trying to say that they will end up doing something to prevent it, if they are having to deal with the consequences – and on the other hand (me at the moment) its a bit of “outta sight, outta mind”.

Quite frankly, I am relieved that I am being given some respect and freedom. I absolutely detest having control taken away from me – which happens 100% in hospital! But it is an interesting thought. What happened to duty of care? Are they breaking the “do no harm” by knowingly allowing myself to do severe harm on a regular basis?

Dont get me wrong, my team is amazing, I love the way they are treating me and giving me actually useful and practical suggestions to deal with life. They have hope in me, and regularly praise me for the good things i have accomplished, and even tease me etc – Which I find very relaxing in a weird way. They are brilliant. I have never been treated like such a real person in the Mental Health system before!

Im sorry this post has not really followed much structure at all, Im quite tired and rambling a lot! I hope it was thought provoking though 🙂

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Oh so miserable

I wish this misery would depart. It’s like a sinking ship in my stomach, dragging me to a point where I no longer have the will to live.

I really want to cut my radial artery and bleed until I feel dizzy. I want to see blood and life pump out of me. I don’t deserve to have it in me. Let the blood carry away the pain and hurt, the hopelessness and eventually, my soul.

I am not mad, or angry. Not scared or excited. I almost feel nothing at all. Like a huge emptiness, I can’t seem to find the energy to want to live, or the energy to really want to die. I just want to slip away into oblivion. No thoughts.

Efficient day!

I have been so efficient today. I scrubbed and cleaned the entire bathroom for several hours – my hands now feel funny and stink of chemicals. And, I made a chocolate cake, and ganashe, even though that meant going out of the house to the dairy to get eggs and chocolate! I even finally got around to putting a load of washing on… which I have been meaning to do for days and days. I ran out of clean underwear so I kinda had to get around to it today anyway.

I was supposed to go out to an appointment with a mental health nurse, but I really really didnt feel like it, and this morning, was busy hoping/wishing that she would ring and cancel. Then half an hour later – ta da! I get a call from an unknown number, and its her, ringing to cancel because she was going home sick. So that worked out perfectly.

Well… not quite perfectly, I needed to pick up a repeat prescription today of my sleeping pills, but i was too anxious to go out…. So i haven’t gone, and I have no sleeping pills for tonight. I will try going again tomorrow.

Im quite shaky and tired now, but I need to keep going, I have to have a shower and find some clean clothes to wear to my friends tonight. They are picking me up, so at least that will save me some stress.

Hope you guys are all doing well 🙂 xx

Trip to the hospital

I want to make a proper post later, but for now I will just write a quick update, seeing as I didn’t post yesterday and I’m on my phone.

Im at the emergency department at the moment,  feeling really sick. I think I have a bug or something. Currently I am just sitting in the waiting room, I have been for ages now. All my body wants to do is lay down on the floor and rest. Sitting up in this chair is very hard work.

The reason I’m here, is because last night I cut myself rather deeply, but I felt very unwell afterwards – dizzy and tachycardic with no energy. So I couldnt stitch it myself, and then fell asleep. Today I was still feeling really unwell, and not up to anything,  also, I wasn’t sure whether it was supposed to be stitched after that amount of time.

So I rumg my doctors office and left a message for a nurse to call me back – so I could ask about whether to suture it or not. Later on, I get a call back, but it wasn’t a nurse, it was my lovely Doctor. We had a little chat about the situation, and she suggested I go to ED because I wasnt well and she wanted them to check my bloods etc.

I begrudgingly obliged, and had my flatmate help me get on a bus to the hospital. So here I am, sitting waiting. Hopefully its not long to go. Im getting bored and hungry and really want to sleep!!

Hope all of you are well, I promise to make a propper post soon! 

They might be listening but no-one really HEARS you.

This is exactly how I am feeling with mental health issues at the moment! Well worth reading!

My Not So Secret Blog

The thing with having an illness you can’t diagnose with a blood test or an X-ray or some kind of biopsy is that its a non illness, a fantasy, all in your head. Because this kind of illness has no measurable parameters using machines and tests to show either deterioration or improvement (the only marker being the self reported quality of ‘life’ for its sufferers) it is bottom of the pile. Did you know one NHS trust has cut its mental health budget by 90%?

Something else very telling is that no Dr or nurse would be permitted to speak to patients with Real Illnesses the way they talk to those with mental health ones, yet it’s fairly routine to be spoken to like some kind of sub intelligent sub human when dealing with mental healthcare professionals. If you are literate and articulate then usually even the most well presented…

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Calling the Parentals…

I just talked to mum on the phone for ages. Shes kinda freaking out a little about my state:

  • Too anxious to leave my bedroom
  • Too anxious to feed myself – apparently surviving off coffee, more coffee, and toast doesn’t count? Who would have known!
  • Missing important appointments and not realising, because I’m just consumed with my anxiety/fatigue
  • Not getting out of bed/not showering/not really functioning..
  • Self harming
  • Going from talking really fast non stop one day to being miserable and crying the next

There’s probably more I am forgetting. But I didn’t really put two and two together and realise, actually how low functioning I am at the moment!?

Then she started telling me that it wasn’t acceptable and that I should just pray more and I would be better. Sorry mum, but I’m already doing that quite a bit, and I’m not saying that it doesn’t help it does , but I still have crippling anxiety and self harm behavior. It’s not really a matter of, just try harder. It doesn’t really work like that!

So I’m feeling pretty miserable right now. Like a complete baddie failure at life. I also need to get up in the morning unfortunately. And I’m already freaking out about having to go out. 

If I’m this bad after two weeks of no mental health support… how am I going to manage the next 6 on my own???!

10 ways to tell if you are allergic to gravity!

Today is a POTSie day

You are probably thinking – What on earth is POTSie? Well, fair question. It’s a bit of a slang term commonly used by those of us lucky enough to be allergic to gravity – or standing up! POTS – aka Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome is a chronic autonomic condition that I have to fight everyday. 

So, here’s 10 ways to tell if you are allergic to gravity:

  1. You feel like you have been running a marathon all day. All day yesterday too. And the day before that…tired
  2. You randomly feel the need to sit down in the middle of the supermarket, on the street,or anywhere else for that matter (insert embarrassing place here)
  3. You have a love hate relationship with exercise… well, mostly hate. Lets be honest people. After 2 minutes, this is you:

gym

 

  4.  You need to drink an entire swimming pool a day to even vaguely survive!

  5.  Salty food is your best friend, and you regularly get disapproving looks from others when salting your food…

  6.  Sometimes you feel like this man here:

pill man

  7. The floor is your best friend:

fall

  8. Sleep is your second best friend… when you can catch him

sleep

 

  9. Your heart rate could be likened to the speed of a Springbok

springbok

  10. You’re not a quitter!!

 

Keep hanging in there my fellow POTsies!!

(I was sitting here feeling pretty yuk, so I thought I would pop on my heart rate monitor. Aaaaand sure enough, my heart rate is being screwy! 100 sitting… 150 standing sigh.)

 

What goes up must come down..

So you know how I said I was having a good day? Well not anymore. Of course there has to be at least one bad thing to bring it all crashing down.

unknown number

I get a phone call from a number that I didn’t recognise.. I hum and har for a few seconds before deciding to answer anyway. It turns out it was someone from the organisation that I really want to volunteer for. I completed and got through the loong 3 week intensive selection process, but it was conditional on my police check coming back ok. They said it was taking a long time. Now this, i found out a week or two ago – which was exciting! 

So tonight he rings me and says they need to meet with me tomorrow for an hour to discuss my police check which had just come back. So now I’m freaking out!! I don’t have any kind of criminal record whatsoever, so it must be mental health stuff that’s on there. I’m still under the mental health act – although under a community treatment order. So maybe that’s what appeared? Or could it be from the times that I’ve run away from hospitals and had to be brought back forcefully by the police? 

police puppies

I was under the impression that your mental health stuff doesn’t go on those police checks! So what, now all potential future employers will find out that I’m a crazy lady and I will never get a job! I feel like such a failure at life, and my past keeps screwing up my future. It really makes me want to give up. Don’t worry, I won’t.. its just disheartening.

And just to hammer the nails into my own coffin – I ended up self harming again, and suturing myself up. I almost considered going to the emergency department, because I think I cut right through a vein and it bled and bled and bled to the rhythm of my heart beat for hours. But it turned out ok in the end.

I have a check up with my GP (general practitioner) tomorrow, and I’m quite nervous, but it will also be good to talk to someone about stuff, especially as my social worker at mental health is away.

Today I had a break from my brain! + Cool Elephants!

Today was nice. Just one of those feel good days. Just nice

Brain-Break_4529620_lrg

I had a break from my brain… I seemed to be relatively calm most of the day, I also didn’t feel too physically ill! The odd intrusive thought came by, which stressed me if i let myself dwell on it – so i tried not to, and just live in the moment instead.

Now often when I try and do this, it doesn’t work, and I feel anxious anyway. But not today, it was quite novel actually! So what did I get up to? I got up, did the dishes with my flattie, then got ready to go out on my voluntary Bible work.

We went round visiting people who had previously shown an interest. We spent some time with a lovely older lady and had a long chat about many things. As we were leaving I spotted that she had a really cool display of little elephants! So I asked her about it, and each little elephant had a story behind it, from a different country. One of them – the big black one was sent over by a relative who had gone away in world war II when he first arrived overseas. He became a prisoner of war, so she didn’t see him again for another 5 years. So this elephant was a special reminder of him. It was quite special. I felt honoured to hear this story. I was so fascinated by these elephants, so I asked her if i could take some photos, to which she agreed 🙂

wpid-20140827_154522.jpg

 

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I also enjoyed spending time with the two lovelies who took me out with them. I felt safe. And then we got some super yum coffee! 

Lets hope the anxiety doesn’t catch up with me later on. For now, Im just stoked that Ive had a relatively panic free day 🙂