Tag Archives: diazepam

02:06 – Stress, anxiety, stress, anxiety, stress!

6 Dec

If I thought I was stressed out when I last posted I’m even more so now. I’ve managed to get my two uni essays finished and submitted in time so I’m glad they are over with even though they are both really crap but so long as they scrape a pass that’s all I’m really caring about to be honest. I now have an official moving date which is Monday. The parents have got a van sorted, I have got my brother and my best friend’s boyfriend to help with the heavy stuff and I’ve got a carpet fitter sorted. But I still have soooo much to do. I haven’t even started packing things into boxes yet but now that the essays are out of the way I can spend Fri, Sat and Sun getting my whole life packed into boxes and bagging up all the rubbish that’s to go to the skip.

There are a lot of problems with the new house, a lot more than what I first thought. At first I thought it was mainly cosmetic stuff that needed doing and once it was completely redecorated it would all be OK. But as it turns out there is a lot of damp as there are broken and missing tiles on the roof. We had such strong winds last night another two were off and lying in the garden today. There is a big crack on the outside of one of the walls that has come through into the bedroom and that wall which my Dad has now painted twice is not drying out properly at all because of it. The living room wall has a big damp patch as well. The property inspector finally came out today almost two weeks after I reported there being dampness in the house and thankfully he is putting the job through as an emergency which means that they will hopefully get the roof tiles fixed tomorrow so the dampness doesn’t get any worse.

I got a letter from the council telling me that they have suspended my housing benefit until I give them an official moving in date which is adding to the stress as I now have my current housing association on my case about rent arrears. I’m also trying to sort out having my mail redirected but my postcode won’t bring up the correct address on their system so I have to complete a form in a post office branch which was fine but they are asking for two forms of address ID which have to be within the last 3 months and I have changed to paperless billing for everything so that is stressing me out as well trying to get a couple of companies to quickly send me stuff out as it takes five days to set up which means I need to hang onto the keys for here for extra days so I can still get my mail. I also need to arrange for someone to come out from my current housing association to do an inspection so they can see I’ve not wrecked the place! And I still need to contact BT to have my phone line and internet moved as well. So yeah… lots to do and it’s all sending my anxiety levels through the roof. The next few days are going to be crazy busy and I’m just crossing my fingers now and hoping that this dampness situation can be resolved as I don’t want to be living in a damp house!

For some reason I’ve been getting a lot of urges to self harm again. There is no obvious reason for this, I think it’s because I am that stressed that I need something to ground me because my head keeps overthinking about all the what if’s and all the things I need to do then it speeds up too fast then it slows down too slow and I just feel as though I can’t think straight at all. One minute I feel OK the next I’m having a full on panic attack then my thoughts are racing and no matter how many times I try and have words with myself that moving house is a big stressful event and it’s ‘normal’ to feel really anxious it just doesn’t seem to sink in and I just feel like I’m getting closer and closer to losing the plot.

*deep breaths*

OK, I guess as it’s almost 2am I better think about trying to get some sleep. I’m tired yet wide awake. My head has been hurting all day but I think that’s because I forgot to take my morning meds and probably the stress mixed in with it too. So a good night’s sleep would be most welcome but it seems when I go to bed at the moment my heart likes to start playing funny buggers with me and doing that horrible palpitating thing then beating super fast for no apparent reason. Anxiety everywhere and all of the time! I just can’t escape it… argh! I’ve had a good dose of Diazepam about half an hour ago so hopefully that will do the trick to let me get some proper sleep tonight but so far I don’t feel much effect from them, think I may need to take a little extra one or two.

Goodnight folks x

 

 

00:10 – ECT… has it really come to that?

31 Oct

Today I had my third appointment with new psychiatrist. I have to be honest and say I was utterly dreading it because the last two appointments with him have been extremely frustrating and of no help whatsoever. But lovely support worker came with me and when she first picked me up I was very very anxious, did not want to go, but after sitting talking to me and calming me down for about 20 minutes I finally got out of the car and went into the main hospital building.

I had gone over with her what I wanted to say to new psychiatrist today and just hoped that I’d both remember it all and get the opportunity to say it all. I can’t remember if I have already mentioned this here, but basically I had decided that if this appointment went as shite as the last two with him then I was going to ask my GP to refer me to see a different psychiatrist. I may live in the middle of nowhere with very little in the way of mental health support but I do believe there is one other psychiatrist that does cover this area.

So, bang on 2.30pm his door opens and he calls me through. I hesitantly walk through with lovely support worker behind me. We sit down and he asks how I have been since I last saw him. I took a breath and told him that my mood has remained flat the vast majority of the time, that there have been a couple and I do literally mean a couple of OK/good moments but really for… well… so long now I’ve lost count my mood is flat, I rarely find enjoyment in anything, my self harming continues, I have fleeting suicidal thoughts, my sleep is crap, even the very basics like having a shower and getting dressed and taking the dogs a walk sometimes just proves to be too much for me.

Yes, I know I went out for the first time in at least six months on Saturday night and ended up having quite a good time but I think that was mostly due to the amount of alcohol I’d consumed. I did not mention anything about the recent brief substance misuse because I don’t want that splashed onto my case notes again… and anyways… it’s over and done with now with no plans of any repeat episodes. I told him about the two visits to A&E for self harm wounds and stitches, I told him I am trying my hardest to plod on with my part time home based uni course but that I’m failing to concentrate and struggling with it massively. I told him that sometimes I hear a little niggling voice encouraging me to hurt myself but that I can tolerate it as it’s nowhere near as bad as when I was hearing several voices and hearing them constantly. In that respect I think the 750mg a day of Quetiapine (Seroquel) is still working.

He asked how I’d found the increased dose of 45mg a day Mirtazapine and again I told him that it was fine for the first couple of weeks but then I started having such severe physical symptoms of anxiety (when I truly thought my heart was about to pack in and ended up getting the ecg done) and how lovely GP had wondered if it was actually the Mirtazapine causing it as anti-depressants do take a while to build up in your system. So I told him my GP told me to go back down to 30mg a day and see if the anxiety improved and yes, the heart palpitations did stop and have continued to be minimal. But the ‘psychological’ anxiety, the constant worrying and fears are still very much present. Some days I’m so scared to even walk out my front door to cross the road and walk the dogs for ten minutes then other days I dope myself up on whatever anxiety med I can and force myself to face a potentially scary situation.

He then asked how I had found the Pregabalin (Lyrica) that he had prescribed last time I saw him as the plan was for me to use it on a long term basis for my anxiety and finally start to taper off the Diazepam seeing as I’ve been taking it daily for three years now. But I had to tell him that had been a disaster as well… that I didn’t realise it had the same/similar ingredient as Gabapentin which it appears I’m allergic to. So the two medication changes he made at our last appointment a few months ago were both unsuccessful.

This of course brought us onto the discussion of reducing my Diazepam and I firmly told new psychiatrist that yes I am willing to reduce but I am most definitely not doing it at the moment. I feel horrendous enough as it is without trying to taper off from that. To my surprise he did actually say that he agreed now was not the right time, especially not as we are fast approaching my two worst times of year – Christmas and then my little boy’s anniversary in February.

He asked what support I was getting from the mental health team and I quite honestly told him how utterly useless I find cpn#2. He asked why and I explained about her super structured way of working, her setting of agenda’s, her constant ‘positive goals’ and her reluctance to talk about anything that is making my moods low. However I did tell him that I am now top of the waiting list for psychology and have been given a provisional date of mid to late November for my first appointment. It’s the same psychologist I used to work with so in a way I am looking forward to going back to see her even if I don’t feel particularly convinced that this Compassion Focused Therapy bollocks is going to work for me.

So all in all it was actually quite a good session. I managed to get across to him that the two medication changes he proposed last time I saw him had failed, that I was not ready to taper off from the Diazepam yet, that my moods are low and flat, that I’m self harming again and having occasional suicidal thoughts, that I am generally struggling with life a lot, that I’m struggling trying to continue with my studies, that the only person who lets me vent is lovely support worker, that I find my sessions with cpn#2 useless, and some days I seriously do wish I just hadn’t woken up that morning.

His first response to all of this was to ask me if I thought I would benefit from going in as an inpatient in the bin for a while? I said no, that place makes me feel worse, trapped, none of the staff give a damn, the other patients are too stressful to be around, there are too many rules… just no.

His second response was the one that surprised and to be honest shocked me (no pun intended). He said that as he looked back over all my medication history for the past four years we have pretty much exhausted every med now. There really isn’t anything different we can try. We could maybe try new combinations of something but I have pretty much tried every anti-depressant, mood stabiliser and anti-psychotic and benzodiazapine there is. He asked if it’s my depression or my anxiety that is worse and I said both of them. The anxiety can be managed to a degree with medication, the depression is just constant, constantly ongoing flat crappy moods that for months and months and months if not closer to a year have just stayed shit. Every day is an effort, every week is an effort, some mornings I open my eyes and my first thought is “I think I might kill myself today” or “I wish I was dead”. But I don’t act on them because I don’t want to put my parents through all that heartache and frustration again. I carry on painting on these fake smiles and trying so hard to make everyone think I am coping. Although I did let slip to my Mum the other day that I had recently self harmed and had to go to A&E. The thing is I’m still self harming – first through cutting… then misusing substances… then drinking… now back to cutting again. I try to put on this persona of being someone in recovery but I’m so far from recovery it’s scary. All these people telling me how well I’m doing because they don’t fucking let me talk about how bad I feel, they insist on only talking about positives and therefore have a completely skewed picture of how my life really is.

So new psychiatrist says here is the plan of action: he will not make any medication changes at the moment (mainly because there isn’t really anything else we can try), he would give me a couple of months to start seeing the psychologist again and see if psychological input helped my mood in any way, he encouraged me to be honest with cpn#2 about what *I* need from our sessions (told him I’d already done that and got nowhere)… he asked lovely support worker if she would carry on seeing me and she said yes she would see me weekly for as long as I needed it, he encouraged me to try and open up to my family so they know I’m actually not coping that great right now and all these fake smiles are simply that: fake.

And then he hits me with it… “there is one other thing we can try but I’d like to wait at least six months before trying it as I only like to use it as a last resort… have you heard of ECT before?”

I sat there kinda shocked but nodded my head. A very lovely fellow blogger tried ECT some time ago and I read all her experiences with it with interest even though it didn’t seem to work for her. It is something that scares me a bit… I mean nobody really likes the idea of being knocked out, put into a seizure and having your brain zapped do they? It’s pretty hardcore stuff. Then add in the quite possible and quite likely short term memory loss. It’s not the most appealing of treatment options. But whilst he did reiterate that it would be a last resort I suppose it sort of shocked me that it was even suggested. He said it doesn’t work for everyone but a point has to come where we try and break this depressive and unproductive cycle once and for all… and maybe, just maybe ECT would be the thing that finally works for me. But like I say, he wants me to try a few months of psychology first and then review things again. He wanted to see me back in a couple of months but he is away for most of January so my next appointment is February 6th… five days before my little man’s anniversary so I’m bound to be in a super depressed state of mind next time I see him. Again, lovely support worker said she would come with me.

I can see that my life is not good at the moment, far from it if I’m brutally honest. Yes on the one hand I haven’t given up on the studying (yet) and yes I managed to travel to a new faraway place recently (doped up on diazepam) and yes I even managed to go for a night out on Saturday (full of alcohol). But then we look at the flip side: I’m self harming a lot although managing to keep it reasonably superficial at the moment purely to avoid having to go to A&E, I’m having lots of thoughts about ending my life, my anxiety levels are ridiculously high and out of control most of the time, other than that one night out on Saturday I have next to no social life whatsoever, no friends that I see on any kind of regular basis, a constant niggling voice giggling away in my head at how pathetic I am and fuck just a couple of weeks ago things became so desperate I put that shite back into my body for some sort of an escape. I feel unsupported apart from by lovely support worker, I feel alone, I feel miserable, I question the point of everything, I don’t cook meals or eat properly I just binge on junk food, I’m lucky if I shower a couple of times a week. Things are not good. And I can’t go on pretending that I’m OK any longer because I’m not. I didn’t want to admit it but there you go, I’ve said it. I just don’t want to worry my family so I keep it bottled up… but it’s getting really bad again.

I cancelled my appointment with cpn#2 for tomorrow because I just cannot face her “positive goal setting” bullshit… I left a message for her saying I had too much studying to do and couldn’t go and asked her to give me a call back to rearrange another appointment but to be completely honest I will probably cancel that one as well. What’s the point when I get no benefit from them? And now I know it will only be a matter of weeks until I start seeing the psychologist again maybe it’s time to just stop seeing cpn#2 because I feel like I’m getting nowhere with her and I just cannot work to her super structured approach.

Has it really come to a point where I need to give serious consideration to trying ECT? Could that be the one thing that just blasts my brain back to a state of normality so I can get on with my life in a happy and meaningful way where I actually want to be alive and enjoy my life? Could it break away from all these desperate little attempts of escapism? I don’t know… And I’m not going to give it much thought for the moment because it wouldn’t be happening for at least six months anyway. And who knows where I’ll be in six months time… Who knows if I’ll even still be here? The way I feel at the moment that is somewhat doubtful.

But if I’m totally honest with people, if I lay my cards on the table and admit to how bad I feel then I enter back into the conversations like those of today: talks of admission into the bin… talks of ECT… Do I want those conversations, or worse, for them to actually happen? No.

I just want to feel normal whatever that is. I just want to feel happy. I want to wake up and look forward to the day ahead. I want things to be easy and free and effortless.

And yet I also want to go to wherever my little boy is… wherever it is we go when our body has died and our soul has moved on… and well…. I guess I can’t really believe that I’ve ended up back in this place again. I’m scared… the feelings of things about to fall apart and hit crisis level feel imminent and I’m genuinely truly terrified of that happening to me again.

13:06 – A bit of bad… and a bit of good…

6 Oct

The text messages carried on last night but I ignored every single one of them and didn’t reply once. So that was pretty much all day Friday and most of Saturday night consumed with frustration and wanting to scream FUCK OFF to the pair of idiots that kept sending me all those messages. Despite not replying or acknowledging the texts last night, they still made me feel crap though. Really crap in fact. Although, I have now worked out that I can add numbers to a “spam” list on my phone and then block them completely which is a good start; the problem, like I said on my post last night, is where I live. It’s a very small town where everyone knows everyone and you just cannot manage to avoid people for very long. I’m scared that by ignoring their texts they might not just think it’s pointless texting me and give up… I’m scared they (or at least one of them) appears at my door. I don’t want trouble. I haven’t done anything to deserve any trouble. But it doesn’t take much for me to go into freak-out-self-hibernation mode and this is very much pushing me in that direction.

What I don’t understand is why the guy couldn’t have just deleted his text thread from me off his phone. I specifically asked him to. It literally takes five seconds to hold down a button, select all messages, and hit delete. That way had his girlfriend gone reading through his phone there would have been no messages from me and I could have avoided being part of their ridiculous nonsense. But for whatever reason he didn’t delete them and I know he didn’t because she quoted back to me so many things I’d said in my messages.

What I also don’t understand is why he let her get access to his phone for a second time. He was the one that kept texting me and telling me to ignore everything she said, encouraging me to engage in conversation with him, asking/begging/pleading for me to “give him something to help him” despite me saying I HAVE NOTHING.

I asked his girlfriend to please personally delete my number from his phone and all his texts to me as well so that he couldn’t contact me. After a load of threats she seemed to calm down when I asked that and replied saying she would delete everything she could find. So on Friday night I wrote my post on here about the whole saga and heard nothing more. Then last night I was just about to take the dogs for their bedtime walk when my phone beeped again. It was from him not her and all it said was “what has that bitch L (his gf) being saying about me?”

Again, I didn’t reply and completely ignored it.

But what really annoys me is the fact I have asked/told them both separately to delete my number from his phone, to delete my text thread… texts these days aren’t the way they were in older phones where you have to go into each one individually… they all merge together like one long chat… so all you need to do is highlight that thread and delete it. His gf wants someone to blame, I have worked that much out, and she probably knows deep down he is still using heroin but to blame it on something like Diazepam probably makes it easier in her head to deal with. But I have had times several years ago where I’ve taken upwards of 100mg of Diazepam at one time and not been in the kind of state she describes him as being in. I’d simply pass out and sleep a good 12 hours taking that much!

I want an end to all of this. I want to not have to be scared to walk out my front door or go to the shops. My agoraphobia already causes me enough panic doing those things without having this added anxiety on top. So there is a part of me that actually wants to phone his gf and ask if we can meet and talk calmly and explain everything to her in a rational manner. But she seems very hot-headed and I have a feeling she’d go running back to him telling him everything I’d told her then that would kick off another argument between me and him. And I would be more worried about that, because, when he is “off his face” on whatever substance he is extremely unpredictable.

So I think I have come to the conclusion that I’m going to block both their numbers from my phone for now and hope that calms things down. If she can see he is still “out his face” but there is no link to me then maybe she’ll start using her brain and realise he is getting stuff from someone else or maybe even make the realisation he is using heroin again. All I know is that I can’t be doing with other peoples problems and whatever problem those two are having in their relationship has sweet fuck all to do with me. In a way I hope I do bump into them in the street sooner rather than later and just have it out with them. I just want it all gone… why the hell have I been dragged into all this crap??

The thought of going to the police and reporting the threatening messages has also crossed my mind. But if they got his and her phones they would see I admitted to giving him a very small quantity of very low dose Diazepam about six months ago. This could cause problems if lovely GP found out but I could also explain the truth that I was pressurised into it. I’m sure they would be far more concerned with him ‘earning’ his money to fund his heroin habit by supplying half the town with cocaine and ecstasy every weekend than me giving someone one strip of low dose prescribed medication many months ago.

But for now I’m going to just wait and see what happens next. If I see them and they don’t approach me then all is good… If I see her and she approaches me I’ll just be honest with her… If I see him on his own and he approaches me I will massively have it out with him about what the fuck he thinks he is playing at allowing her to send me all the abuse that she has done.

So hopefully this will be the last post on that matter and all will settle down and be forgotten about. I lay in bed last night thinking why… why after 22 months does this guy even still have my number? The very first thing I did when I opened my eyes this morning was check my phone to see if there was any further communication from either of them but there wasn’t. I know what my options are if it continues but I’m just going to keep my fingers crossed that now that she has had her outburst that might be the end of it all!

So I did wake up in a bit of a super grumpy mood wanting to do all sorts of nasties to myself but do you know what?? Not only did I not act upon them… I also phoned a friend who is a hairdresser (she works from home) and asked if she could fit me in for a trim and some highlights over the next few days so I’m going tomorrow afternoon and going to actually do something NICE for myself for once! Pictures to follow… promise!

And whilst I’m on the topic of “good/nice things” yesterday I challenged my agoraphobia. I admit it took a LOT of anti-anxiety medication to get me there and I was constantly re-dosing every couple of hours but I MADE IT! Went to another small town but with quite a lot more shops and got three new jumpers/hoodies now that the cold winter is coming in (they were in the sale!) and I also made a spontaneous decision to have my nose pierced! I think it was partly all the meds floating around in my system and partly because this was the same place I got my bottom right-hand-side lip pierced at the beginning of summer… but yeah… I just seemed to walk right in with no hesitation and say “can you pierce my nose but with one of the really tiny diamonds please?” and before I knew it I was in the chair having it done!

The piercings I currently have are: bottom lip (right hand side)… tongue… ears and now nose. In the past I have also had my belly button (took it out when I fell pregnant) and also my bottom lip but in the centre. I’ve also had my nose done manyyy years ago when they still used the piercing gun but I took it out after a day cos it hurt so much! I have to admit though, this nose piercing yesterday (done properly with the needle) was the sorest piercing I’ve had yet! Plus I have four smaller tattoos and a full back tattoo so needles don’t really bother me! But yeah, the nose piercing was ouchy and made my eyes water loads! But I like it, I’m happy with it, so that’s all that matters. I try and keep my tattoos and piercings as discreet and small as possible, I think they look better that way but I guess that’s personal choice!

So dare I say it… besides all of the shit with the texts and calls and threats from the idiot addict and his partner, I’ve managed not to react angrily or aggressively or by self harming or any of that stuff. Instead I’ve blogged and moaned about them, got it out of my system, and decided to do something nice for myself to make me feel a bit better. I’ve challenged my agoraphobia, I’ve treated myself to three cheap but nice tops, I’ve had my nose pierced with a tiny diamond and I have a hair cut and colour tomorrow afternoon.

And for once, I’m going to leave it there and end on a positive note! Oh wouldn’t CPN#2 be proud of me for being a little bit ‘compassionate‘ towards myself!

23:36 – When the past comes back to haunt you

4 Oct

Today got off to a better start than I expected. I kept to my word and went to my appointment with CPN#2 and it actually went quite well. I managed to stay calm and explain how her ‘super structured approach’ and ‘agendas’ for our meetings were not helpful at the moment. I explained that recently my head just hasn’t been in a very good place at all and I need emotional support more than I needed to learn the basics of the Compassionate Mind therapy. We actually spent the hour where I did most of the talking and where she actually listened, and to give her the credit she deserves (well for how she was today!) she even offered some suggestions that did sound helpful. So I’m very much hoping that this is going to be the start of a change in her approach and that way I might just start attending my appointments properly again. I do want to do the Compassionate Mind therapy stuff but right now is not the right time… I just can’t concentrate or deal with things being overly-structured or planned for in advance. I need to just go with the flow for the moment until my head settles down again.

I left the appointment feeling more positive but minutes after I got home I heard my phone beep at me. There was a text message from a girl that I don’t know personally, but I do know her partner. Now for those of you who have been reading for a while, you might remember that back in January 2012 I made some very stupid decisions whilst trying to escape from life in any way possible. I was in a really dark place and the stupid decisions I made were to do with drugs. Now I won’t lie, whilst I haven’t touched any Class A drugs since then, there has been the odd time here and there when I’ve maybe smoked a little bit of cannabis but very rarely, and any time I have done I always regret it because it makes me anxious as hell and super paranoid within hours of smoking it. To get back to the point… the guy who I did hard drugs with in January 2012 is a heroin addict. He is also on a Methadone treatment program but he continues to use heroin on top of this. He found out that I was prescribed Diazepam from my doctor and there have been a couple of occasions where he has bumped into me in the street and quite literally begged me to give him a strip to help with the heroin withdrawals and like an idiot I gave them to him. Not because I wanted to, but because I just wanted him to disappear and the easiest way was to hand him a strip of them and then he’d be gone. [Lesson number 1 - never give anything to a full on junkie, you will never get rid of them, they will only keep on coming back and asking for more]

So a couple of nights ago he sent me a text asking if I could spare a couple of Diazepam for him, he gave me some story about being in bad withdrawals but I replied saying that I no longer had any. I do, but I need my prescribed dosage for myself, especially with the intense anxiety I have been battling with recently and all the self harming. So I thought if I just told him I don’t get them any more then that would make him not bother contacting me again. He replied at the time saying “ok, thanks anyway” and I didn’t expect to hear any more about it.

But then today I get home from my appointment and a text appears through on my phone telling me it is his girlfriend and she had been reading all his texts while he was still in bed… she’d seen the ones where he’d asked me for Diazepam and proceeded to tell me that he had been “a complete monster the past few days, falling asleep in his dinner, verbally abusive towards her and not a good dad to his kids” and since the only text she could find about any kind of drugs was the one he’d sent me and my reply she automatically assumed that I was the one responsible for giving him some type of drugs to get him into that kind of state!! He has openly told me that he still uses heroin pretty much daily on top of his methadone but she thinks he is only taking methadone and is clean from heroin! Lies! So her text ended with “if you ever meet with H again or give him anything again I swear you will live to regret it”.

I was sitting here like WTF? Seriously… what… the… fuck??

So I reply to her saying the last time I gave him a strip of 2mg Diazepam was at least six months ago and if he was in such a state he was falling asleep in his dinner and behaving in the way she’d said around her then I doubted very much it was even Diazepam he was taking. It is pretty easy to buy ‘street blues’ (counterfeit 10mg Diazepam tablets, even in the tiny town I live in they are everywhere) and I know for a fact that he buys them regularly. I then sent a text to him very clearly saying “please do not ever contact me again, I do not appreciate getting angry texts from your girlfriend and certainly don’t appreciate being blamed for the mess you are getting yourself into on god knows what you’ve been taking – delete my number and leave me in peace!!”

He then spends the entire afternoon texting me constantly… apologising for her getting access to his phone and for her texting me… begging me not to tell her he was using heroin again… promising me that he’d make sure my number got deleted off her phone… asking if he could come round “to talk to me”… every text I got I either ignored or replied back saying “I’ve already told you to delete my number please do it, I do not want any trouble from someone I don’t even know about something that has fuck all to do with me”.

Then it went quiet and I thought that was it over and done with.

About an hour ago I get another text message from his partner. She’d got hold of his phone again and had read all the texts (although he coincidently deleted the one begging me not to tell her he was using heroin again) – so she went off on one going mad that I had text him back even if it was to tell him to leave me alone… saying she didn’t believe me and she knew it was me giving him whatever he’s taking to get in that state… then the threats started that she knew where I lived, knew who I was and would personally be coming to my door to *insert a load of expletives here* then “give me a hard kick in my fat ass”.

So I reply again. I tell her again very clearly that I have not given him anything. That I have nothing to give him anyway. That I haven’t even seen him in months. I hint to her that it does not sound to me like it is any type of Diazepam/Valium he is using. I try to be polite even though my hands were shaking and say I completely understand why she wouldn’t want him around their children if he is getting himself into that sort of state. And I finally end my text by repeating that this has absolutely nothing to do with me and it was pure coincidence that he text me out of the blue and if she read my reply she would see I offered him nothing at all. Nada. Zero. Zilch. I then ask her if she could please get his phone and delete my number from it as well as any texts from me to ensure he couldn’t contact me again. And on a very final note made it clear I was not impressed with her sending me threatening messages either.

After sitting with CPN#2 this morning and talking about how I felt all messed up but her pointing out how far I’d come from the stupid few weeks of drug use almost two years ago, I couldn’t quite believe these ridiculous text conversations that I was being hit with today. Between him texting saying to ignore his girlfriend and begging me even for just 1 or 2 tablets and her texting me and accusing me of something I have absolutely no involvement in whatsoever and threatening me it’s turned out to be a pretty crappy evening. And this is one of the really shit things about living in such a small town, I know it will only be a matter of weeks if not days before I run into him somewhere… and whilst I know who his girlfriend is to see, I certainly don’t know her to talk to, but from the sounds of things she is a bit immature if she thinks sending threatening messages to someone is a clever move. So yeah… kinda dreading the idea of going out and about now and think I’ll be keeping my head down for a while… and I *hate* myself for writing that because I know I have done absolutely nothing wrong. OK, giving him a strip of my prescribed medication months and months ago was wrong legally, but I’ve learned from that mistake and not repeated it.

I have asked both of them to delete my number from their phones and told them both not to make any contact with me but who knows how long that will last. I’m so annoyed as well because I only just got a new phone a few weeks ago and I changed network providers… I had a new number but decided just to keep my old one and transfer it over to save me having to change my number everywhere. I should have just gone with the new number and dealt with the little bit of hassle of informing people I had a new one! Then he wouldn’t have been able to contact me at all and all this shit could have been avoided. I feel like such an idiot… like it’s taken me right back to remembering being in that horrendous black hole where I needed to use hard drugs to try and get through each day… but I recognised I was doing something extremely stupid and went to my doctor before I got the chance to develop any sort of an addiction and asked for help. I even agreed to voluntarily go into the psych hospital for a couple of weeks to break away from the cycle I was getting myself into and to try and sort my head out a bit. I broke away from all that crap before it got really serious and yet 22 months later because of living in this tiny little town I still pay the price for it by not being able to escape from idiots like him.

*aarrggghhhhhhhh*

I thought writing all of this down would be therapeutic and get me to release my anger/frustration over it all in a healthy manner but to be honest the temptation to just do one little cut just to release and lower my stress levels is super high. But I won’t. I will not wake up tomorrow with yet another fresh cut and know that one was inflicted by some desperate addict and his nasty little girlfriend.

I’m better than that.

I haven’t done anything wrong.

I don’t need to punish myself.

Repeat over and over.

And breatheee.

23:33 – Telling lies to A&E doctor :(

18 Sep

In the past week I haven’t posted because I’ve been feeling so low and if I had written anything it would have made for some pretty depressing reading. Not that this post won’t be but it feels like time to ‘check in’ with my little blog again. One nice thing I noticed was that in the week I’ve been gone my little blog hit the 100,000 views mark, which I know isn’t a huge amount compared to some of the wonderfully written blogs out there but it did give me a little smile to see that nearly four years on people still pop over and read my rambles!

So yeah… this past week I feel as though I’ve been triggered left, right and centre. I know that it’s been over six years now since I lost my little angel but when I see people announcing pregnancies, birth announcements, even just random posts on Facebook that people make about their kids still seem to have the ability to upset me.

I went to see the gynaecologist last Wednesday and she was actually really nice, we decided on a treatment plan of Metformin and Provera (a tablet that is used for a variety of menstrual problems and given to me to induce a bleed as I don’t have periods by myself). She had actually taken the time to read some of my file and she chatted about my loss for a little while and was really gentle and empathic about it. She asked me if I was in a position at the moment to want to try and conceive again but I told her quite truthfully that I’m not even in a relationship let alone a sexual one and that the idea of ever trying again absolutely terrifies me. But she said if a time does come where I’d like to try again she would be more than happy to see me again and go through my fertility treatment options with me. In the meantime she’d like me to try and lose a bit of weight, get my body a bit healthier and see how I get on with the metformin this time round.

Even though she was really nice and helpful, I still left with thoughts of my angel, my limited fertility and my very real and very scary fears for the future. I was literally out of the appointment all of ten minutes when I got a text message from my cousin telling me she is three months pregnant with her second baby. Of course I replied saying it was wonderful news and how I was “delighted for her”… but as I typed the words tears rolled down my face. Don’t get me wrong, I am happy for people that they have happiness in their lives and I would never ever wish a loss/stillbirth upon anyone, but sometimes it just all hurts so much. It’s tiring always having to bite back tears and swallow down the lumps in my throat to put on a smile and congratulate people. Then the following day best friend innocently wrote on Facebook something like “my life is perfect, I have two beautiful little boys and the best boyfriend in the world, life just couldn’t get any better” and that set me off again… all the thoughts of why is everyone else so happy with their perfect lives and I’m so miserable with mine. I’ve practically got no confidence at all, I’m overweight, I’ve permanently scarred my body to quite extreme levels, I barely have any friends and the thought of ever being intimate with someone again absolutely terrifies me. I’m 32 next month and none of this shit was part of my life plans :(

So I spent the weekend near constantly in tears. I hid away from the world. I refused to look on Facebook (my own personal one not my blog one). My head has been full of thoughts and urges and niggling voices telling me just to cut… cutting would make things all better again. But I know what I am like with self harming these days… I find it almost impossible to stop at a ‘superficial’ level… once I start it has to go deeper and deeper until I’ve made an absolute mess of another bit of flesh. And of course this results in a trip to A&E. I haven’t had to attend A&E since April and I’ve been really determined for things to continue that way. But then other things started to trigger me… stupid things like the fact my parents are going on holiday this coming weekend and this resulted in me having to beat myself up over the fact I can barely travel anywhere. Then on Monday I was supposed to have an appointment with CPN#2 and even though I really cannot stand the woman and find her worse than useless, I dragged myself out of bed and walked in the pouring rain to where the mental health team is located. A male CPN showed me through to a room then appeared back about ten minutes later to say that CPN#2 had actually called in sick and wasn’t there so that was a wasted trip and off I went back out into the rain. Would a phonecall to have let me know really have been that hard? I know I have a cheek to talk when I miss so many of my appointments with her but she’s supposed to be the ‘professional’ after all…

I walked home with the only thoughts in my mind that no one gives a fuck about me. I can go 10 or 12 weeks not attending a single appointment and no one ever asks why… no one phones to check if I’m OK… I’m just left on my own… which to be fair is what I always say that I want.

So yeah, the thoughts about cutting just seemed to get stronger and stronger every day from last Wednesday. My part time uni course that I do from home started back last week and I have barely looked at any of the course materials yet. I don’t know if I can do it, I don’t know if I want to do it, I just have no belief in myself right now nor any motivation. I just feel completely and utterly shit.

Now that I’ve rambled on for 1000 words I should maybe get back to the title of this post: I lied to the doctor. Actually I will correct that… I lied to the nurse, to the doctor and to my Mum. Today was meant to be a good day – my new phone arrived and I had been looking forward to getting my upgrade. I decided to get the Samsung Galaxy S4 in red as I loved my S3 and before that my S2. I have to say however that the S4 really isn’t that much different from the S3 and I’ve only had it one day and so far the battery life is proving to be pretty bad, even after disabling all applications and stuff that I didn’t need. I’m not really sure if it was worth the upgrade but maybe I just feel completely blah about everything right now. I can’t seem to get excited/happy about anything. Sorry… I’ve gone all off topic again… my head is just all mixed up and everything I’m writing is all coming out all mixed up as well.

This afternoon I just couldn’t take the constant urges to self harm any longer. Everything came to a head and I was having a complete and utter meltdown. The tears wouldn’t stop, the need to feel pain wouldn’t stop, the memories and flashbacks of so many things wouldn’t stop and I felt like I was starting to seriously lose the plot. I tried taking some Diazepam to calm down a bit but it did nothing to help. I forced myself to take the dogs a walk because I was becoming scared of what I was going to do to myself if I allowed myself to sit and think for one minute longer. The walk didn’t help either though, as soon as I got outside I began to feel extremely anxious and just wanted to run back indoors and hide again. I think that was the point that I realised I couldn’t fight it any longer, I had to cut, it was the only thing that was going to bring me back to reality and ground me again. But I also knew that if I started then I really didn’t believe I’d have the control to stop.

I’m not going to say where I cut but it was somewhere that I’ve never cut before and I will be honest from the start with you guys – I did it that way because I wanted to make it look like an accident. At the back of my mind that was the lesser of two evils if you will… I had to know that if I lost control and went too deep that I could pass it off as an accident and not admit that after going five months without cutting I ended up doing it again. Trust me when I say that the scarring I have on my body… all over my body… is horrendous. I wouldn’t want to trigger anyone but sometimes I think about posting some photos of scars that are several years old – not to try and shock anyone – but to educate them that this is what your body will look like if you walk down the path of self harming. Sorry, I’m going off at a tangent again, back to the point…

I cut. I started and I couldn’t stop. I didn’t make lots of cuts I only made one. One in a place that would be one of the most unlikely places that someone would cut. I went over it and over it and over it until there was a real mess staring back at me. And then I cried. A lot. And then I panicked. This was going to need medical treatment and I had to come up with a story to tell the nurse/doctor at A&E to convince them that an accident had happened… I couldn’t tell them the truth. A couple of hours after I’d cut I decided I had a story to explain my wound that seemed plausible. So I forced myself to go to A&E around 7pm and the nurse who took me through to the treatment room was one I’ve seen a couple of times before (for self harming). The first thing she said was “have you cut yourself?” and somehow I managed to keep my voice steady and replied “yes, but it was an accident”… she replied with “an accident that you went too deep or an accident that caused the wound?” and I lied… “I haven’t self harmed… honestly… it was an accident”. She looked at the wound and said she’d need to call the doctor as it needed stitches. Where I live is a very rural area, the hospital is small, there aren’t a huge amount of staff there, and in A&E pretty much every doctor and nurse knows me. Most of them greet me by my first name and they all know I will just tell them straight out if I’ve cut myself. But tonight something was different, I just could not say those words. So I stuck to my story and when the doctor came in the room I lied to him about what happened as well. He straight out asked me if I was 100% sure I hadn’t self harmed and I looked him in the eye and said “yes, I’m 100% sure”. I felt awful, really awful and really paranoid that somehow he would just know that I was lying. And maybe he did because whilst he accepted my story of how I got the wound he continued to ask me at least another dozen times about my self harming behaviours… when had I last done it… how often am I doing it these days.., what kind of things trigger me off to make me do it… all that kinda stuff. And when he wasn’t asking then the nurse was asking. I kept thinking maybe he could tell from looking at the wound that it didn’t look like an accidental injury and he spent far more time talking about self harming than he did about ‘the accident’. At one point I started to feel like I was going to break down and just admit the truth but I excused myself to the toilet and took a couple more diazepam out my bag then returned to the treatment room and carried on with my bullshit lies.

After an hour or so I was cleaned up, stitched up, bandaged up and quickly jumped up and thanked them then went to leave. The doctor asked me to wait for a minute so he could tell me when I’ve to return to have the stitches taken out. They want me back on Friday for a wound check and dressing change then back on Tuesday for the stitches to come out. I really don’t think either of them believed my made up story but neither of them came straight out and said it, but there were far too many ‘mental health assessment’ type questions going on for an ‘accidental injury’. Hmmm. Then again, it could be possible that the doctor remembered me from the night where I really did almost die after taking a massive overdose and very nearly ending up intubated… maybe that was why he asked so many questions about my mental health and state of mind because he knows what I’ve been capable of in the past. Oh… I don’t know… maybe they did believe me or maybe they didn’t… I’ll probably never find out for sure what they really thought unless I ask to see my notes which realistically I’d never ask to do as I think it would be a total head fuck to see what some people have said about me on paper.

So there we go… after five months of only very superficial self harming I have again done it badly enough to require stitches. I’ve lied to a doctor and nurse. I lied to my Mum when I spoke to her earlier and told her the same ‘accidental injury’ story.

Do I regret cutting? No.

Do I feel better for cutting? No.

Do I think I’m going to do it again? I really don’t know.

Is my head still a fucked up mess? Unfortunately yesVery much so in fact.

:(

22:02 – Friday already…

9 Aug

Wow, I can’t believe it’s Friday already. This week has gone by seriously quickly. Maybe that’s because I’ve actually gone out of the house and done things, time definitely goes slower when I’m in self isolation mode.

Yesterday I had my appointment with lovely support worker from rape crisis. It was a good session, some of it was spent with me moaning about new psychiatrist and about these Lyrica (Pregabalin) tablets. The other part of it was me trying in some round about way to explain that every time I think of sexually abusive acts that have happened in my life I always find myself somehow excusing them or looking for reasons to justify them. It’s easier, so so much easier to blame myself and hold myself responsible for them all than it is to admit to myself that several males have actually wanted and enjoyed hurting me, who got pleasure out of hurting me…. one when I was just a child. The fact it happened again in adulthood means yet again I somehow asked for it to happen and deserved it to happen. Lovely support worker tried to reason with me and told me it wasn’t my fault but… I just don’t believe her :(

Today I went to my appointment with CPN#2 so that was our first appointment in 8, 10, 12 weeks… I don’t know, I do know it’s been quite a long time (again, my fault). So she had asked me to take my Compassionate Mind chapters in and she has said that she wants to get me to a place where I’m starting to grasp the basics and then hopefully the psychologist will be able to start offering me appointments again to do the Compassionate Mind stuff when it starts getting more in-depth. I arrived at the appointment and she said it was nice to see me and said “ok we have an hour, what would you like to use that hour to talk about?” I said I had a question: will I still continue to have CPN support when I start working with the psychologist again? Instead of answering me she wrote my question on a piece of paper. She then asked me what else I wanted to talk about and I said “I have a lot of concerns about the new psychiatrist, I don’t think the appointments have been helpful at all and I’m frustrated that after sending a long letter to him it appears to have achieved nothing”.

Again she wrote that down on a piece of paper. She asked if there was anything else I’d like to spend the appointment discussing and I said obviously I wanted to use most of the appointment to make a start on some of this Compassionate Mind stuff. Yes, she wrote that down as well.

She then turned the stopwatch on her phone on and propped it up against the window ledge so she could “make sure the appointment doesn’t overrun”. I hated it, every time I glanced at it I was getting distracted trying to work out how long we had left and the more I tried to think of the quick but concise ways to discuss my points the more I started going off at a tangent and forgetting what my point was. She said more than once “could you please stick to the point MCBL… this isn’t the question I have written down” Grrr. She annoyed me a bit today if I’m honest. She seemed to want to run the appointment as though she was following an agenda for a meeting. Once I’d finished blabbering on about my concerns of being discharged from CPN support once the psychologist returns and she repeatedly told me she didn’t know what would happen but did make sure she threw in the obligatory “we are pretty short staffed at the moment” line. She did say I wouldn’t be left completely on my own unless I made the decision to stop engaging with them. She then crossed ‘point number 1′ off the list and asked me what my concerns were regarding the new psychiatrist. I began to tell her about him wanting me to start on a drug that I really didn’t want to take and how I just can’t understand why the new psychiatrist wants to shake everything up when this is the longest I’ve gone for a while where I haven’t self harmed or been admitted to hospital. Although there’s been shitty days there have also been stable ones and I just don’t get why this new doctor is coming along and trying to change all that.

Her response was simply that I could ask for a second opinion if I wanted but that I’d probably find that all doctors are trying to get their patients off of daily benzodiazapines. I said to her I was now on a relatively low dose, I’ve been taking it every day for almost three years, I have no bad side effects, it helps me… why do they need to fix something that isn’t broken?!! So CPN#2 asked me what dose of Diazepam it is that I’m taking and I told her I was down to 16mg a day. She then tells me that this is not at all a “low dose” and even though I told her that GP had agreed it was a low-ish dose she started going on and on about 2mg or 4mg a day being a low dose and to be honest I don’t really know what else she had to say on the matter because I became distracted watching the numbers changing on the stopwatch phone app. I heard her saying something about how I could try writing him another letter but I couldn’t be doing with listening to her so I just said “lets move onto the compassionate mind stuff… I’ll leave the medication stuff to my GP when I see her next Friday” and she seemed quite happy to cross point two off her agenda.

So we move onto the Compassionate Mind printed out workbook. She has a copy and I have a copy. She asks me where I’d like to start and how much of it I’ve read. I hadn’t read any. I did plan to last night but I forgot. However she picked out an exercise – the body scan one – and asked if I’d like to do that. I actually remembered doing that one with the psychologist back in 2010/2011 when she was trying to get me to do the compassionate mind – sorry ‘Compassion Focused Therapy’ – back then. So CPN picks another bit and basically she read a couple of pages aloud and I read them in my head as she spoke. She then started talking about what ‘homework’ she could give me as she can’t see me again for almost a fortnight, so I agreed I would try and read through some of the first section of it and write down the bits I found easy to understand and what bits I struggled with. Then she got out her diary and we made an appointment for the 22nd August and I glanced at the stopwatch – it was up to 37 minutes – but apparently that is an hour in her eyes as she started getting to her feet and showing me towards the door. In honesty I found the appointment pretty useless in the end. I’m really starting to feel a bit fed up with the CMHT and it makes me not want to attend when I just feel no benefit from it.

I had a pretty quiet afternoon once I got home and have carried on having a pretty quiet evening. Tonight will be my third night on the new higher Mirtazapine dose of 45mg but I only really noticed that I had a bit of brain fog yesterday but it was less foggy today so I think my body is going to adjust to the new dose pretty quickly. Which is good, of course.

I don’t have anything planned for the weekend as yet, hoping it will stay dry so I can get out a good walk with the dogs up the hills for a while. I could do with some real proper exercise where I come home aching all over and feeling like I’ve had a good work out. Hopefully I’ll be in a mood to go be outdoors tomorrow and the fact that I’ve stayed in since 2pm today isn’t a sign I’m slipping back into self isolating mode.

We shall see……

19:28 – Lots of anxiety about these Pregabalin (Lyrica) tablets!

7 Aug

Yesterday turned out to be a good day. I finally took Mum for her belated birthday lunch and managed to travel around 25 miles and then get out once we were there and managed to go into a restaurant and eat lunch. We were in the restaurant for almost an hour before I started feeling a bit anxious and irritable so I paid the bill and we went for a little wander around the village shops. The rain had came on by then and neither of us had jackets so it was a good excuse to head back to the car and come home. As soon as we were back within a couple of miles of home the anxiety quickly began to calm down so I even managed to spend another half an hour in a coffee shop having a slice of carrot cake which was yummy. It was nice to spend a few hours with Mum and just have a proper chat about both the crappy stuff and some lighter stuff and we both agreed we should do it again soon. So I came home and had a reasonably relaxed evening in front of the TV but then a very restless night’s sleep where I just seemed to wake up constantly, it seemed as though every time I dozed off I woke straight back up. Really annoying and left me super grumpy and overtired today.

Thankfully I didn’t have much to do today. I had an appointment with lovely GP this afternoon and she wanted to have a chat with me about the Pregabalin. She’d received a letter from new psychiatrist regarding my appointment with him last week and he said he wanted to start me on 75mg twice a day and also increase my Mirtazapine dose from 30mg a day to 45mg a day. I told lovely GP about the appointment with new psychiatrist being a complete joke due to the whole 15 minutes it lasted, the fact that when I told him I’d been voice hearing again he simply shrugged and offered no opinion on why they’d came back, that he was still going on about me coming off the Diazepam and that he said I could be prescribed Pregabalin to help with anxiety long term. Lovely GP asked how I felt about it and I told her that the only information I knew about it was what I had read on the internet and that new psychiatrist didn’t even tell me what kind of drug it was, instead simply telling me to “try it, if you don’t like it then you can stop, if it helps you can stay on it”.

So lovely GP took the time to explain what type of drug it was and told me all of the common side effects but there was something different about the way she was talking to me, something I couldn’t quite put my finger on but she seemed kind of hesitant or a little concerned maybe about me taking Pregabalin. She said it was similar in make up to Gabapentin which I once tried taking as a mood stabiliser back in 2009. I only managed to take it for a couple of weeks, maybe even just days before feeling so suicidal and so on edge and a complete mental mess and was told to come off of it immediately. When she told me it was similar to Gabapentin I instantly felt my anxiety start to rise and I told her I’d taken Gabapentin and what a horrible time I’d had. She looked back on her computer to 2009 and found the notes that went along with it and said to me again that it was my choice if I wanted to try it or not but she really did seem like she wanted me to say “no I don’t think I do want to try it” and that was exactly what I felt like saying to her, but there was something niggling at the back of my head saying “what if this drug could really help you… what if it’s the one thing missing and with the combination of it and starting the talking therapy stuff, this could be the right cocktail for me at last…”

I tried to explain that to my GP and she said it was completely up to me, she would go with whatever I wanted. So I asked again what dosage new psychiatrist wanted me to start on and she said 75mg twice a day. I asked what the lowest dosage available was and she said the lowest capsule is 25mg so I said if I was going to try it I wanted to try it from the smallest dose possible and work my way up if I find it beneficial. So we agreed I would start off on 25mg three times a day and then I have an appointment to see her again next Friday and if I find I am tolerating it ok then we can increase the dose. The thing is that once I got home I sat and read the patient information leaflet and there are a LOT of potential side effects. Now I know this is the same with ANY drug even simple paracetamol has a long list of possible side effects and you would think that being on the maximum dose of a drug like Quetiapine that I wouldn’t give a second thought to potential side effects, especially when I know I have the lowest dosed capsules they make. But for some reason (more than likely because I keep having flashbacks of the Gabapentin experience) I am utterly terrified of trying the Pregabalin now. I haven’t given a single thought to increasing my Mirtazapine tonight, I know what side effects I might feel from that and none of them scare me, I know I’ll just feel foggy headed and a bit zombie like for a few days and then my body will adjust to the new dose. But I have sat here with the box of Pregabalin in front of me for a couple of hours now telling myself just to take one but something is really stopping me. Anxiety stopping me. How stupid is that – a drug that has the potential to really help my anxiety is actually causing me a hell of a lot of it?!

So I thought I had made up my mind that I would start with the increased dose of Mirtazapine tonight and let my body get used to that for a few days and then re-assess the Pregabalin situation, maybe by then I’d have built up the courage to try at least one capsule. But then I thought maybe it would be best just to start it tonight and deal with all of the side effects all at once from both meds.

Argh, I don’t know what to do I really don’t. Something is screaming inside of me to remember how horrendous those days taking Gabapentin felt and how stupid I felt when I was whizzing my way through internet article after internet article and reading how it was generally so well tolerated… how could I be in such an anxious and suicidal feeling mess when all these people were saying their side effects had been minimal?? Of course, I have since learned that all medications effect everyone differently. There have been drugs that I haven’t been able to tolerate for more than a few days/weeks/months which other people have said they experienced no side effects from and then there are other people who say to me now that they don’t understand how I can be taking 750mg of Quetiapine mixed with Mirtazapine and Diazepam and not feel like a complete zombie.

I said to lovely GP that I know the reason the psychiatrist wants me off the Diazepam is because it’s an addictive medication but I also said that sometimes the attitude of “if it’s not broke then why fix it” would make life so much easier. At the moment I am slowly but surely starting to get better with the agoraphobia. I still can’t leave my safety zone or travel on a motorway or go near any big cities or shopping centres, but my distance is slowly increasing so long as I know I will be on quiet roads to get to my destination and so long as I’m in a situation where if the panic becomes unbearable I can turn around and head for home right there and then. In other words any form of public transport is still way too much for me to even consider because I’m not in any kind of control over turning the bus/boat/train/plane around… whereas when I’m in a car a car can be turned around immediately. Anyway what I was about to say before I went off on that tangent was, I was telling lovely GP that in my opinion (and obviously I’m no professional) but in my own opinion I think the dose of Diazepam that I am currently on (16mg a day) is a relatively low dosage. And I cannot see what long term damage would come from me staying on that dose and carry on with my life how it is at the moment, some areas still very much a struggle and some areas beginning to slight improvements. Lovely GP nodded her head as if in agreement with me and just gave me one of her sympathetic smiles. I have also found out from my reading about Pregabalin online that it is a pretty expensive drug to be prescribed whereas Diazepam at the dose I’m on is pennies in comparison. It seems so stupid to me that when some bits of my life are kind of ok someone who barely knows me can come along and decide they are going to remove my safety blanket but offer to put me on an expensive drug with the potential for tonnes of unwanted side effects, that may or may not help with my anxiety all the while I’ve already been taking something for almost three years which I know helps. I admit I do have to self medicate with it sometimes and take more than my prescribed dose on particularly bad days, but then there are some better days where I don’t need my full dose so it all balances out. But as I said to lovely GP I know I’m not going to win the argument with new psychiatrist so if this Pregabalin stuff is my only option for long term anxiety management and the only thing he is willing to offer me then would I be foolish not to even try it even if the potential for a repeat of the Gabapentin experience is pretty likely to happen?

I really don’t know what to do and I suppose I’m not going to find out by sitting staring at the box, but I think for the next few days anyway I’ll just do the Mirtazapine increase and get adjusted to that. Hopefully in the mean time I’ll find the courage to at least try the Pregabalin… Then again I don’t even know if I want to find the courage because I’ve read so much about it and so many mixed reviews about how helpful it actually is for anxiety and there seems to be one common theme and that is that most people start on around 150mg a day but almost everyone seemed to need to increase, most people who it worked for said they didn’t get real benefit from it until they were in the 300mg+ range and another whole lot of people said it has a tendency to feel like it’s working and then just poop out on them after a month or two meaning more and more increases in dosage. Also it appears to be a bit of a bastard to come off of. Even my box of the lowest dose capsules says on the pharmacy label “do not stop this medication without speaking to your doctor”. The withdrawal process from it has been horrendous for some people, people who haven’t found any benefit at any dose and so are withdrawing from it completely and ended up with a whole new battle on their hands. I know coming off the Diazepam isn’t going to be an easy one but at least I can say it was worth taking all of this time.

OK I think I’ve rambled on quite enough now I see the word counter has gone over the 2000 mark! Argh I’m just really confused and feeling really anxious and just do not know what to do for the best. Maybe things will somehow become clearer through the next few foggy mirtazapine brain days… who knows.

Tomorrow I have an appointment with lovely support worker and then on Friday I’m starting this compassionate mind/compassion focused therapy bollocks with CPN#2. Must remember to do some reading from the workbook tomorrow night. On that note my stomach is rumbling and I think it’s time to think about dinner and try to stop thinking about all the if’s, but’s and maybe’s about these stupid tablets every two seconds!

Arghhhh!

*lets out silent scream*

Deep breath…

Focus…

Count to ten…

And…

Breatheeee

 

 

 

23:02 – Another week already…

5 Aug

And so, another week has begun. It’s Monday night and I’ve had a relatively quiet day just spent indoors mostly besides a few walks with the dogs. I’ve been feeling extremely close to self harming a lot today although I’ve stayed on top of it and haven’t acted on it (yet). There’s several reasons for this but I’m not really in the mood to talk about them at the moment (a lot of them tie in with Berry whose still bursting into fits of giggles), so I’ll talk about my weekly line up instead…

Tomorrow I’m taking my Mum for a belated birthday lunch (it was her birthday last week but this is the first day she’s had off work) and I’m feeling a little bit anxious about it. I suggested going to a nice little village I’ve been to a couple of times recently with best friend. It takes about 45 minutes to get there and the scenery is absolutely beautiful but it’s a big challenge to all of the agoraphobic symptoms. Even though the rational part of my head says that I’ve done it before so I can do it again, this will be the furthest I’ve travelled with my Mum for a long time. But she has been so good to me and I’ve been saving up for a few weeks so I could take her to a really nice (but pretty expensive) restaurant that sits right next to the water. It gets excellent reviews so I’m sure the food will be lovely but again that is another big test to me – both being far away from home AND having to sit and wait until food arrives, fight the anxiety off enough so that I can get an appetite to eat, sit and make conversation for an hour or so, take a wander around the little row of shops, then finally come back home. I’m going to leave the dogs at home so that I can use them as an excuse to get back home for. I don’t like leaving them for any longer than 3 or 4 hours by themselves so that will give us enough time to get there, have our lunch, look at the shops and get home.

On Wednesday I’m going to try and get an appointment with lovely GP. That will be almost a week since seeing new psychiatrist so I’m assuming he will have got a letter to her by Wednesday stating what medication changes have to take place. Going on Wednesday means it will be exactly two weeks before I’d be due another monthly prescription so that should work out quite well – it will give me two weeks of adjusting to the higher dose of Mirtazapine as well as seeing how I tolerate the Pregabalin. Then I can go back and see her two weeks later when I’m due my monthly prescription and we can decide if I’m happy with the new med adjustments or if I want to change anything. I have to admit I’m feeling a bit very apprehensive about adding a new medication into the mix. I know I’ve chopped and changed and increased and reduced a shit load of meds over the years but I’m always a bit phobic of them to begin with, convinced they are going to give me tonnes of side effects and leave me in such a state of panic that no med in my emergency stash will be able to calm me down from. I don’t know whether to just add on the 15mg to my Mirtazapine and take the full 45mg at bedtime – I currently take the 30mg all at bedtime, and I figure that way I can hopefully sleep off any side effects. As for the Pregabalin I don’t know if I should add that into the bedtime cocktail or take it in the morning. I pretty much take all of my meds at night to try and sleep off some of the zombieness that accompanies them. I guess lovely GP can recommend the best way to take them seeing as new psychiatrist didn’t bother his arse *rolls eyes*… So anyways, that is Wednesday’s plan.

Thursday I have an appointment with lovely support worker at rape crisis and I think that now we can maybe start getting back on track and doing the ‘work’ that I’m supposed to be doing there. Due to me not getting in touch with CPN#2 for so long, some of my appointments with support worker have turned into mental health type stuff and that’s not really what I’m there to talk to her about.

But Friday I have an appointment to go back and see CPN#2 so I’m going to dig out that compassionate mind stuff she posted out to me and make sure I read at least the first chapter before our appointment so I can at least sound as though I’m trying (even if I do think it all sounds a load of bullshit deep down).

So that’s my week ahead… exciting times eh?!

I want to try and get to sleep early tonight so meds have been taken and as soon as I finish rambling on here I’m getting straight into my pyjamas. I never know which is worse – wake up early and have time to get organised, mentally prepare myself for the anxiety I know I’ll soon be feeling, take some Diazepam, take lots of deep breaths, kinda ‘psyche’ myself up to it if you like. Or is it easier when I sleep in late, have to jump up and have a shower, get dressed, dry my hair, walk the dogs, feed the dogs, run out the door chucking some Diazepam down my throat – all of which done within 30 minutes of opening my eyes. Is it easier to take the time to mentally prepare or is it easier to just throw yourself in, very much at the deep end? I don’t know which is the best method, both have been tried and failed, both have been tried and worked. Sometimes I think the best way is just not to plan anything, that way you can never be disappointed in yourself. I try and tell myself I’m just going out for a while, just going to spend time with my mum or best friend or whomever, that I’ll be back home soon, there’s no need to panic, but sometimes the panic just laughs straight in my face then sucks me in, sends me crazy, then spits me back out as a quivering anxious wreck…

OK, on that note I’ll say goodnight. Fingers crossed that tomorrow won’t be too anxiety provoking and maybe I’ll even manage to have a nice time and enjoy spending a few hours just Mum and me. I want her to have a nice day so I really need my panic to behave itself and stay well away hidden in the background if only for a few hours.

Goodnight folks! x

22:22 – Just a ramble really

25 Jun

This morning I was woken up with my mobile phone ringing. Unknown number. I didn’t think it would be some pain-in-the-arse sales call so early in the morning so for once actually answered it. It turned out to be CPN#2 getting back to me after me leaving a message for her on Friday. I asked her if she had got a copy of my letter and she said yes but swiftly said it had gone straight into my file and I kinda got the impression that was the end of that conversation. She told me she had briefly seen the psychologist (that I’m back on the waiting list to see) and they had printed some chapters from the Compassionate Mind program workbook thingy. She then waffled on for a few minutes about what parts of it she would do with me – basically she is going to use our appointments to do the basics of it then I think they are hoping I will be able to get into more depth with it with the psychologist once I start seeing her again.

The phone call with CPN#2 seemed a bit strange somehow. It felt like she was being a bit off with me from the moment I mentioned the letter. I didn’t say anything about it on the phone to her other than to ask if she had got it. So instinctively this is making me think she doesn’t agree with the points I raised in the letter or that some of it’s content has been taken in the wrong way. Argh. And she was making a real point of talking about how our sessions from now on were going to be very structured with specific tasks, goals and aims. I suppose this is a good thing but I’m still very sceptical about the whole compassionate mind stuff and really am not convinced that it’s right for me. Then again, maybe she read the bit in my letter which clearly stated that there were ‘no non-medicated coping mechanisms available to me right now’ and decided if she tries to get me onto this compassionate mind crap then she can at least say she is trying to offer me alternative coping mechanisms. So I see her next Wednesday – can’t say I’m looking forward to it but I’ll give it all a try, I guess I’ve got nothing to lose.

I don’t know whether to make an appointment with lovely GP tomorrow or not. I need a new prescription as I’ve just got a couple left for breakfast time tomorrow. Lovely GP did give me a repeat prescription sheet last time I saw her 4 weeks ago so that I didn’t need to make an appointment every 4 weeks, but in light of the letter I sent and the proposed medication changes new psychiatrist has made, I’m now thinking it might be better and easier just to go and see her. Our GP surgery is so annoying though. Unless you want an appointment in a month’s time then you have to phone on the day you want to see a doctor first thing in the morning, usually the phonelines are engaged constantly and when you do get through to a receptionist you’re told “sorry but all the same day appointments are gone now”. Frustrating. But I have been waking up around 7am a lot recently (this is after not going to bed until between 3 and 4am am) so I haven’t been getting a great amount of sleep or any good quality sleep. Despite the lack of sleep it means I’ve got a reasonable chance of being up first thing and hopefully get a GP appointment without any problems.

I can’t tell if I’m feeling tired at the moment or just fed up. My mood feels a bit blah. Thoughts drifting towards self harming again a lot at the moment. Sometimes it feels like the days are going by too quickly, like I wake up and think ‘fuck, another day to get through’ but again, that might be due to the fact I’m only sleeping 3 or 4 hours a night. I wish I could go to bed right now – 10pm and sleep right through to 8am – that would be heaven. And it’s so frustrating when you just can’t seem to get your body to switch off and rest. My thoughts aren’t particularly fast though, they don’t seem speeded up in any way, if anything they seem slower than usual. Like every day is just one big drawn out frustrated grumpy thought that occasionally dips down into ‘horrible thought’ category then back to just being fed up and miserable again. It’s not like there aren’t things I could be doing – there’s plenty of things I could be doing to pass the time a little more productively. But I just sit here glued to the sofa or lying on my bed staring into space and thinking all the ‘what’s the point’ type thoughts but they are going in slow motion. Stuck like a broken record. The only breaks come when I think the dogs would probably like to go for a walk and even then it’s the same slowed down murky depressed thoughts in my head just with some fresh air around my face.

So I guess I’ll see what happens tomorrow and report back with what happens with lovely GP. Maybe I’ll just do the cowardly easier option and hand the repeat prescription request into reception and hope that she doesn’t cut the Diazepam dose down yet. But I would prefer to go and see her and talk in person, she’s one of the very few professionals that I can actually talk to quite easily yet for some reason every time I’m sitting in that waiting room waiting to be called through I start to panic like mad. Ah, you just can’t win sometimes.

OK I’m going to see if there’s any chance of getting an early nights sleep. Please let things go OK with lovely GP if I see her, I can’t be doing with both my psychiatrist and GP both disagreeing with my concerns over the whole Diazepam withdrawal, I need to feel like someone other than my support worker is on my side and right now it’s looking likely that CPN#2 is probably going to take the view of new psychiatrist. I kinda expected that anyway seeing as she actually has to see him and spend time with him when he comes here each week to do his clinics, obviously they’ll all want a nice little happy working relationship and if that means keeping your mouth closed for an easier life then that’s what they tend to do. That’s one thing I miss the most about the social worker I used to work with, she was actually one who would open her mouth and disagree regardless of what others were saying. She had balls. I miss having someone with balls in my care team. Then, on saying that, lovely GP is usually very fair so maybe she will actually agree with the concerns I have written down.

Right, 10.20pm, time for medication. Time to sit around and go back and forth from the bedroom until I finally pass out for a few hours… then just as I’m enjoying it my phone will start bleeping loudly in my ear and it all starts all over again.

17:29 – Letter sent to new psychiatrist and my week’s worth of rambles

22 Jun

So a few days have now passed since finding out I have the all clear, although it’s been weird, even after getting the results back on Tuesday the anxiety surrounding it all still took another day or two to settle down.

On Wednesday I spent a few hours with best friend and the kids and then got my hair cut and highlighted. It was getting really long again, a good six inches or so below my shoulders. Now it’s in a kinda choppy medium length bob, just sitting at my shoulders and the blond highlights all the way through are really nice. It’s strange though, best friend was like ‘look now you can tell CPN#2 when you next see her that you did something compassionate for yourself’… whereas in my head there was nothing compassionate about it… I wasn’t sitting there thinking ‘ohh I deserve this’ or ‘ohh my hair looks really nice’… all I could think was ‘my hair looks a mess, it’s far too long, I can’t be arsed to spend an hour or more straightening it, it’s time to get some chopped off’. The only reason I got the highlights was because there was a special offer on and whilst they look nice I still have that negative sort of view that the money could have been better spent on something else.

Anyways… moving along…

On Thursday I went to my appointment with my rape crisis support worker and we spent the session putting together a letter to send to new psychiatrist. I had my first appointment with the new psychiatrist on the 5th of June and as you may remember it was a disaster. I thought about writing a letter to him pretty much as soon as the appointment was over but decided to give it a week or so just in case I was overreacting and thought I would maybe calm down about it all. But whilst I have calmed down, I still strongly felt like there were things that needed to be said to him before I next see him on August 1st.

I’m not going to copy and paste the full letter here mainly because of the length of it but also because it contains a lot of personal/confidential information but I’ll cut and paste the main points I raised:

  • As soon as I entered the appointment the first thing you did was check you had the correct medication information for me. As soon as I confirmed it was correct you automatically said that you want me to begin reducing my Diazepam (which I have been taking daily since Nov 2010) with your reasoning being that it can be an addictive medication.
  • You did not ask me how I would feel about reducing my dosage, there was no conversation about it nor did you ask me which of my symptoms that I feel the Diazepam helps with. You didn’t ask how my mood states had been recently, or if I was still self-harming, etc. In fact it seemed to me that you had already made the decision that changes should be made to my medication before I even entered the room and before meeting me.
  • You said to me that because I am on a high dose of Quetiapine that I wouldn’t notice not taking Diazepam. I don’t understand this because it is my understanding that the two medications are used to treat two completely different conditions. The Quetiapine helps control intrusive voices, paranoid thoughts and beliefs and delusional thinking. It does not help with anxiety. I am also concerned that you mentioned lowering my Quetiapine dosage slightly as well, when I have only very recently began to feel a little more stable. This concerns me as I worry if the Quetiapine is reduced as well then I may start to have symptoms of psychosis again or destabilising my mood to the extent where I end up back in hospital.
  • My main concern of all is, at the moment, I do not have any other coping techniques for my anxiety and agoraphobia and self-harming. I am currently on the waiting list to see the psychologist, however have not had an appointment to see her as yet. I hope that in time I will learn tools to enable me to cope with my anxiety, agoraphobic symptoms and distressing self-harm episodes, all in a way that does not require medications like Diazepam. I want to be able to deal with these situations in a healthier way, but the fact remains that right now I do not have any non-medicated coping strategies in place to help me cope with the debilitating levels of anxiety that I experience. It just seems that it would make a lot more sense to: wait until I begin seeing the psychologist; start learning and putting into practice non-medicated coping skills; and then start to lower the diazepam medication.
  • I would also like to make clear that I do not object to the idea of lowering the dosage of the Diazepam slowly and safely and I would also like to make clear that I fully understand it is a medication that is intended for short term use. However I feel that reducing it before there are any alternative coping strategies in place would be a very risky thing to do.

The letter ended up being three pages long but those are some of the concerns I raised. My support worker printed me off a few copies and I wrote at the end of the letter that copies had gone to my support worker, my CPN and my GP. Well, every time they send me a letter about something or another they send it to everyone in my care team so I figured I would do the same. All the letters have been posted now and I do have a little bit of anxiety about what the reaction to it will be but I know that I have the support of my support worker and she agrees that I’ve done the right thing so at least I know someone is on my side. I did also say at the end of the letter that it was not a letter of complaint against the psychiatrist, it was purely me wanting to have the opportunity to explain my concerns after feeling unable to do so properly at the appointment with him. I ended the letter saying that I would attend my next appointment on August 1st with him, but hoped he would have read my letter beforehand so we could talk about my concerns in more detail.

So that’s another thing done and dusted, well for the moment anyway. Hopefully they will see that I am trying to be sensible and rational and take my concerns into consideration. I need a repeat prescription on Wednesday and was just going to hand the repeat form into the receptionist but I’m now thinking it might be better to make an appointment and go to see lovely GP instead. I’m curious to know if she will support what I have said in my letter. She is usually very fair and I have a feeling she will say that maybe it is time for us to start lowering the dose of the Diazepam but I also think she will agree with me that there needs to be something in it’s place so that I can cope with situations that I can currently only cope with through medication. I guess the only way to know what she thinks about it all is to go and see her.

Anyways… I think I’ve rambled on enough now about all of that!

Yesterday I spent most of the day with a friend and I also got an email from my university tutor telling me I have to get up to date proof of being in receipt of benefits to apply for my course fees to be waived again when we start back after the Summer holidays so I’ll need to get that sorted out next week. I also finally phoned the mental health team to ask for an appointment with CPN#2 after a good 4 or 5 weeks of not seeing her (not her fault, mine for not attending and ignoring her phonecall and letter) but she isn’t back in the office until Monday so I guess she’ll get in touch then.

Today (Saturday) I’m having a quiet day as the weather is crap and my flat looks like a bomb site. My washing pile was getting ridiculously high as I pretty much spent all of last week in such an anxious mess that I got nothing done. I’m having a day where I just want to laze around in my pyjamas, do some little bits of housework here and there, work my way through my washing pile, watch shit on TV… a lazy day in other words.

Mood wise I feel OK-ish at the moment. Every so often I have some little thoughts that creep into my head out of the blue and start me thinking that I feel like I need to self harm, but I’m managing to ignore them for now. Although I have checked my hiding places a couple of times just to make sure that there are fresh packets of blades there… just in case… Then I catch myself looking at my legs and the horrendous scarring and feeling kinda sick that those scars are going to be there forever. And a part of me wants them gone, wishes I’d never done them, etc… Yet another part of me is like, ‘well you can’t erase any of those scars so you might as well add some more’. So not sure what’s going to come of these thoughts/urges yet, I guess time will tell.

Right I have rambled on for wayyy too long. And the washing machine has just finished another cycle so time to get off my fat ass and go hang it up to dry. I’m also starting to get hungry so time to cook up some pasta I think.

Hope you all have a nice weekend folks xx

 

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