Tag Archives: my little angel

00:01 – A pharmacy error (and still struggling)

11 Sep

I think it would be fair to say that I’m struggling a lot at the moment. On the outside I’m trying my hardest to appear ‘OK’… maybe even better than OK… I started back my part time home based university course yesterday and it took me the entire day to get through 8 short pages. Nothing seemed to be sinking in even though I knew the information was at a reasonably basic level. So I ended up getting myself super stressed out and wondering how on earth I am going to manage to do double the workload that I did last year. I’m doubting myself massively and I really don’t know if I will cope with it and we’re only two days into the new term.

Anyway, last night things kept building and building inside me, my head was full of urges to self harm. The urges are nothing new but my ability to fight them off feels like it’s lessening day by day. And the thoughts were stronger than just thoughts… there was no voice as such but the urges felt more like commands. No matter how hard I tried to ignore them they just got louder and more and more frequent. So by the time it got to bedtime my anxiety levels were starting to get out of control and I knew it was only a matter of time before I reached for my tools to cut myself with. As a last ditch attempt to get the anxiety under control I reached for my emergency Lorazepam and swallowed one down. About half an hour later I started to feel strange… my thoughts were all muddled and my body felt totally different to how Lorazepam has ever made me feel before. Usually I find it to be really good for anxiety without much sedative effect but my anxiety wasn’t calming down and the overall weird spinning sensation was probably making the anxiety even worse.

At the time of taking the tablet I did notice that it was yellow in colour and the only Lorazepam I’ve ever had have either been little blue tablets or little round white ones. There were only a few in the box though that had been cut from a strip and all I could see printed on the blister was the letters LO and 1mg underneath. So I just thought they were a different generic than what I’ve had before. But I just knew this wasn’t a normal feeling for Lorazepam and something made me go back and look at them again. The label on the outside of the box definitely said Lorazepam 1mg tablets but then I took out the patient information leaflet and it was only then that I saw the leaflet said along the top ‘Loprazolam 1mg tablets’.

So I began to really panic. I didn’t like how it was making me feel. Even though I’ve tried plenty of benzodiazapine drugs this was making me feel really odd like I couldn’t think straight at all. For the first time in ages I consulted some peeps on Twitter and if any of you read this – thank you so much for helping to calm me down! I remember being given one of the Z drugs a while back, I can’t remember if it was Zopiclone or Zolpidem, but it made me feel all disconnected and like my head was spinning and this Loprazolam made me feel pretty similar to that. Thank fuck I didn’t take 2mg like I usually would take of Lorazepam. So I stayed on twitter for a while, then decided to go and lie down to see if the spinny dizzy sensation would calm down a bit, put a relaxation track on my iPod and spent the next 90 mins or so battling a horrible panicky sensation. I don’t know if it was the Loprazolam making me feel like that or just me freaking out because I’d taken something I’d never taken before. Eventually I fell asleep.

After I got up this morning and walked the dogs I went to the pharmacy and took the box, leaflet and remaining couple of tablets with me. The pharmacist took me into a side room and sincerely apologised. The normal pharmacist is off at the moment and they have had a lot of locum’s in over the past few weeks. Somehow someone had made a mistake but the pharmacist said that Boots take this kind of thing very seriously and we had to sit and fill out a form so that they can launch an investigation into who dispensed it, how the error could have happened and report to their head office with what measures they are going to put in place so that it doesn’t happen again. They will also write to my GP to inform her of what happened. The pharmacist said Lorazepam and Loprazolam sit very close to each other on the shelf as it’s all in alphabetical order and that’s the only reason she could see for the error happening but she did make a point of saying that that was no excuse. She asked me if I wanted to be informed of the outcome of their investigation but I said it was fine. I’m just glad that the tablets I was given weren’t anything that could have caused me any major harm, it was lucky it was another benzodiazapine even if the symptoms that particular kind caused weren’t very pleasant. She then gave me the correct tablets and that was it all sorted out.

Then best friend phoned me and asked if I’d like to go to a little birthday party they were having for her new boyfriend’s little boy – it was his 1st birthday and I really didn’t feel like being in a room full of babies and toddlers but equally I didn’t want to be shit and say no when I always go to both her little boys birthdays and I guess if the new man is sticking around for the foreseeable future then I have to see his little boy as part of their family. So I went to the toy shop and got a little present for him and a card, came home and wrapped it up, then went out to the party at 5.30pm. When I got there the house was pretty full, there was at least ten kids under 5 and four mums and dads as well as best friend and her boyfriend. Then one of them had to ask me “don’t you have any kids? don’t you want any?” and I just didn’t know what to say, so I just smiled politely as I felt the anxiety starting to rise and said “not yet”. I hate it when people ask me that because I want to proudly say “yes I have been pregnant, yes I have carried a baby, yes I felt a baby kick inside me, yes I went through a very long and extremely painful labour and yes I gave birth to a beautiful little boy… just way too early and he didn’t survive” – the only reason I don’t say all of that is because of their reaction… the look on their face when they just don’t know what to say. So instead I just smile and say “not yet” even though I feel as though I’m really letting my little angel down by saying that.

Anyway I managed to escape after an hour and took the dogs for a long walk to try and de-stress again.

Tomorrow morning I have an appointment with the gynaecologist at 9am so it’s going to be an early start getting up around 7.30am. This is the first time I’ve asked to see the gynae since shortly after losing my little man in 2007. But I know my PCOS is getting worse, I haven’t had a natural period since I lost him and PCOS also plays havoc with trying to lose weight (admittedly the Quetiapine and Mirtazapine also don’t help the weight issue). So I think I’m going to give the diabetic drug Metformin another shot, I’ve tried it twice over the past ten years and both times couldn’t tolerate the side effects it has on your stomach, apparently this is the most common reason why people stop taking it. I don’t really want to take any more medications but Metformin does have pretty good success rates for controlling your blood sugars and that in turn makes it a little bit easier to lose weight.

I’ve always struggled with my weight since my late teens and couldn’t understand why as I ate relatively healthy and did a reasonable amount of exercise. Then at age 20 or 21 they diagnosed the PCOS which certainly gave me some reason as to why I found it so hard to lose weight. But then when I was about 23 I went on the Atkins diet after lots of research telling me that cutting out carbs and sugars was one of the most effective ways to lose weight when you have PCOS. Over the course of maybe six months I lost four stone (56lbs) so it was pretty rapid weight loss and I got myself down to a slim and healthy 9 and a half stone. Kept the weight off until about 2009 when I split up from my fiance then rapidly gained a crazy amount of weight over the next year as I comfort ate my way through thousands of calories a day. By the time I was sectioned for the first time at the end of 2010 I had gone up to 15 stone! I’ve lost a bit of weight since then, although not much, but I’m now about 13 stone 10lbs and really I want to be around the 10 stone mark so I’ve still got a way to go yet.

So I guess I’ll go to the appointment with the gynae in the morning and see what she suggests and if Metformin is what she recommends then I’m going to ask to start on the lowest dose the tablets are made in and build up from that slowly to see if that helps me to tolerate it a bit better. Then I plan on coming home and spending a few hours studying.

I need to try and keep myself busy and distracted at the moment because as soon as I let myself just sit and think I end up with a head full of thoughts and urges to self harm. And I really don’t want to because I’ve managed to go for five months now without any severe self harm wounds. Plus every time I look down at my legs I want to recoil in horror at the permanent and extensive scarring that’s all over them. I hate the sight of the scars on my legs they look horrendous even though some of them are quite old, I have very fair skin and they still look awful. The tops of my arms aren’t much better although the ones on my forearms have faded enough that I now feel comfortable to wear 3/4 length sleeves. I think people notice my tattoos on my wrists before they bother to look at the other side where the scars are.  I hate that I’ve permanently damaged my body and I truly do hope that I can find the strength not to act on these intrusive horrible urges but they are eating away at me and it’s starting to feel like it’s going to keep on getting worse and worse until I just give in and do it. But I’m not going to give in without a fight. Little superficial cuts I can deal with but no more huge angry permanent scars 😦

On that note it’s now midnight and I’m up in just over 7 hours so time to try and get some sleep. Hopefully tomorrow will be a better and brighter day.

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22:27 – My Gratitude List

29 Sep

I am writing this post after discovering a new blog I hadn’t read before which can be found here: http://myjourneywithdepression.wordpress.com/

The blog is entitled “All that I am, all that I ever was” and as I haven’t read enough of it yet, I don’t know if this is taken from one of my most favourite songs Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol. Maybe I should ask Addy the writer of the blog and who, if you click on that link, you will find recently wrote a gratitude list.

He has inspired me to do the same. At a time when I seem to be a constant emotional crying mess, I want to take a deep breath and clear some headspace and write down all the things I am grateful for. I dare say I may want to add more to this list, but for now here goes…

My Gratitude List  I am grateful for:

  • My wonderful parents who have supported me tirelessly and endlessly throughout my 30 years on this planet. More than anything for their support over the past 5 very hard years life has thrown at me.
  • Having a roof over my head and a flat that I moan endlessly about, but one which keeps me warm, gives me somewhere to sleep (even if it is currently a 2 seater sofa) and allows me the luxury of electricity to blog, watch TV, have clean clothes (when I remember to wash them), to have nice hot showers (when I remember to throw myself in them), etc
  • My dogs. They have their moments of driving me mad when they burst into random barking at completely random things, but their unconditional love for me, their complete dependence on me, the way they just seem to sense when something is wrong and come and cuddle into me makes it all worth it. They have kept me alive on so many occasions and I never understood the love you could have for animals until I got my two monkeys.
  • Being accepted onto my Uni course even when I was upfront and honest that I have mental health problems and they could so easily have used that against me. But they didn’t and they have given me tools to distract myself (though they don’t always work quite yet) and have given me hope that I will actually have a future, and not just a future but a career doing something I feel so passionate about.
  • My two best friends. One who I talk about often on here, who is always there for me despite not really ‘getting it’ sometimes when it comes to my mental health and not exactly being the most sympathetic of people. However she has given me two little boys who call me Aunty E and as stressful as they can be, they never fail to put a smile on my face. I feel like a real Aunty to them and that is nice. My other friend who I still class as a best friend despite not seeing her in agessss is someone who shared a lot of crazy (in a fun way) times with me. She says the right thing at the right time, she listens when I need an ear, she is able to put a sensible head on when needed and give me supportive advice. I miss her loads but am also so proud of her; things weren’t going how she wanted them to in life and she took a big leap of faith and moved far away but it paid off. And now she has totally changed her life around for the better, she is one of the cleverest people I know and I have so many fond/funny/crazy/lovely (and a few emotional) memories of times we’ve spent together and I hope there will be many more in the future. She is just one of these people who you know will be a friend for life. I’m grateful for friendship.
  • For being free of psychosis. God those episodes were some of the worst times of my life. When your thinking has been totally taken away from you and replaced with beliefs that those you love, strangers in the street, people who care for you – when you end up in a place of believing and I mean truly believing that they are out to hurt you, they are conspiring against you, that you must be vigilant and cautious of them, when you accuse them of the above…. and none of it is true apart from in your own head. I am grateful for being free of psychotic episodes and the people I threw accusations at still sticking around despite all the horrible things I said to them during those times of being so acutely ill.
  • For the experiences of love within relationships with partners. Even though they have all ended and I have been single for rather a long time, I do hold some good memories of how it felt to be loved, to be wanted, to be desired and cherished, to be treated like a princess and everything just feeling so perfect at the time. There have been some good guys in my life and as this list is all about being grateful I’m only going to mention those good guys and not the ones who almost destroyed me.
  • For the opportunity of being pregnant. For the experience of watching a baby growing inside me. For knowing what it feels like to have a bump and to feel a first kick. For understanding that complete and utter unconditional love you have for this little person developing inside of you that you have never met but you love them with all your heart. For getting to be a Mummy even though my angel went straight to Heaven, for having those moments with him that I did, for seeing complete perfection in front of me and knowing that I helped create it.
  • For all those times where I could so easily have slipped into addictions when messing around with drugs, especially when back in January this year I did the most stupidest thing I have ever done in my life and used heroin for two weeks. For getting help at just the right time and being saved from falling into an addiction with that drug. I’m grateful that I have a completely (illicit) drug free body and am so much happier without that kind of shit screwing up my already screwed up head even more. I am grateful for sobriety from drugs and being able to control my alcohol intake to probably less than once a month.
  • To the staff who work at a&e who have quite literally saved my life on a couple of occasions. Who haven’t judged me but instead pulled me out of overdoses safely and taught me that deep down I do value life. For the numerous times I have turned up there bleeding and confused, embarrassed and ashamed, and they have comforted me and patched me up to live another day. To the emergency ambulance service who did help save my life the night I took the most serious overdose I’ve ever taken when I truly thought that was it, I was going to die as I heard shouts in the a&e emergency treatment room of crashing blood pressures and “she’s losing consciousness”. I thought I was a goner. But I’m still here. I’m grateful we have such a good ambulance and a&e service for such a little town.
  • To the other professionals I have worked with in the past and continue to work with into the future. To my social worker and to my GP mainly, both for being so lovely, so supportive, so understanding. For giving me time when time was what I needed, for giving me advice at the right times, for trying repeatedly to get me to believe in myself when all hope was almost lost, for making me feel for those ten minutes or that hour that I was the only person in the world who mattered and pulling me out of some really deep dark holes. I’m grateful to them.
  • Music. I don’t know where I’d be without it. Lyrics are sometimes what makes a regular song turn into the most beautiful, touching, moving piece of music you have ever heard. When you listen to words being sung and the hairs on the back of your neck stand up, when you feel those goose pimples down your arms, when you can cry your heart out because somebody has composed lyrics that resonate so much with how you are feeling in that moment. Music has been a distraction, a comfort, something that’s made me happy and something that’s made me sad. But I couldn’t imagine not having it in my life, so I guess what I am really grateful for here is having the ability to hear, as without it I would never have heard some of the most amazingly beautiful little masterpieces that have ever been created.

I’m sure there are many more things I could (and will) continue to add to this list over time. But for now, it may have taken me almost three hours, but I have a visual list in front of me of things that I am truly grateful for and that make life worth living for one more day in this crazy world. It has actually been really difficult to think of things to be grateful for, if it was a list of things that had hurt me, caused me pain or upset, depressed me, made me anxious over… I could have kept on writing all night long. It’s surprised me that I managed to come up with as many things as I did.

For now, this is my gratitude list. And guess what? I haven’t cried once whilst writing it, I have smiled a few times and felt touched at others. I thank Addy for the inspiration to write this and really force myself to look deep within and I hope that my list might inspire you to write one of your own. It would be lovely to see at least one other person whose blogs I follow write one too and have someone else who might not be in the best place right now be able to identify at least a couple of things that they are grateful for in their lives.