Tag Archives: scared of change?

14:03 – New beginnings?

21 Nov

Approximately 18 months ago I applied for a housing transfer through my local council. I had become absolutely miserable in this flat and when my agoraphobia is really bad I get so anxious I find it incredibly difficult to leave to walk down the communal stairs past my neighbours doors to get outside. This means that I sometimes have to rely on my parents or friends to come and walk the dogs for me or live on takeaway food delivered to me. I also get super paranoid because I have neighbours through each wall to either side of me as well as someone below me and someone above me so I feel like I’m boxed right in the middle. The professionals I was working with at the time supported my application as did my parents who all believed that if I just had my own front door it would help a great deal with me being able to leave the house easier. There are some other factors as well but if I go into them all this will turn into a super long ramble and I have to be at my appointment with lovely support worker in 45 minutes.

On Monday I received a letter from the council telling me they had a property that was vacant that they believed would be suitable for me and were giving me an official offer. It came completely out of the blue and I read the letter with a mix of excitement and then huge panic. The letter asked for me to phone them to arrange a viewing and see whether or not I wanted to accept the transfer. So on Tuesday my Mum came and picked me up and we met the housing officer at the little house. It’s about 2 miles away from where I live just now and is just a little one bedroom bungalow with a little garden and is literally 5 minutes walk to my parents house and 5 minutes walk to the hospital where the mental health team are. It’s on a quiet street which has houses with families on the one side and a row of little one bedroom bungalows on the other side which I think mainly house elderly people. This is ideal for me as my flat is right in the town area of where I live which means it’s always noisy with traffic, people in the communal stairwell coming and going, drunk people passing by after the pubs on the weekends, etc etc.

So we viewed the little house and it’s pretty dated and old fashioned looking on the inside, it badly needs redecorating but has a front door and back door with a small garden that my little dogs would love playing in. The garden is all enclosed with a fence so they would be safe. I tried to look past the dated decor and imagine how I could make it look to make it homely. But after only ten minutes the housing officer said she had to get to another appointment and that we’d need to leave so I don’t feel like I got to see the place properly and I can’t make a decision of permanently living there on ten minutes of viewing. The council then said I had to give a decision within 48 hours maximum (the form actually says 24 hours). So now I find myself in a bit of a situation. I don’t think I could be offered anything better as a transfer, the location is ideal like I say it’s really close to my parents, I don’t really have any neighbours super close to worry about, it’s quiet and peaceful, the dogs would have a garden to play in and I guess it’s a clean slate, a place to start afresh from.

But I have been in this flat for seven and a half years. It has a huge amount of memories associated with it, some good but some very very bad. Sometimes I get these little flashes in front of my eyes where I just look at a particular part of a room and all these memories flood through my head and can leave me feeling quite fucked up. I have, on a couple of occasions, self harmed just from memories around me and making me feel so trapped in here like I can never escape from them. And this new little house would be somewhere with no bad memories, no feeling trapped, somewhere to start creating memories in. My parents really want me to take it because they would feel so much better knowing I was just a few minutes walk from them and most of me wants to accept it as well. But as soon as I go to sign the acceptance form I get a massive release of anxiety completely overwhelming me. Mum says it’s just because it’s a big change and a new place that’s unfamiliar to me but that if I just go for it and get it looking homely that I will settle into it in no time. And I think she is probably right but I can’t stop thinking of all the ‘what ifs’ and the thought of having to pack all my possessions up and let removal guys into my flat and having to contact tonnes of companies and services to notify them of change of address, getting phone line and internet moved, gas and electric moved, just loads of shit like that makes me panic about it all. Like seriously bad waves of anxiety, strong enough to make me think I just can’t do this and I should just stay here no matter how much I hate it.

So the council have agreed to let me have a second viewing which is tomorrow at 2pm. I have to give them a definite decision by 4pm tomorrow. The property is currently lying empty so I assume it would be fairly quick to get the keys. I also have my two final essays for these modules I’m doing on my home based uni course due in the next two weeks so how I am supposed to study for them and write 2 x 2000 word essays as well as packing all my stuff up and moving to the new place, get it redecorated and everything all at once I just don’t know. They say one of the most stressful things is moving house and they aren’t wrong. When I moved in here I hardly had anything, just the very basics and it took a while to add in my appliances and furniture and stuff. I lived for the first couple of years with loads of second hand stuff but now over the last five years have replaced everything to new stuff. And I have a lot of stuff to move, in fact I think I have more stuff than the little bungalow can take as it didn’t seem to have much storage and the rooms are quite small. Maybe I’ll just have to throw a lot of stuff out that I don’t use/need any longer.

So yeah, tomorrow I have to make my definite decision and I am absolutely terrified. I keep having panic attacks and barely slept last night because I felt so anxious it was keeping me awake. I don’t know whether to accept it and take the chance that new beginnings would be a good idea and trust what my parents are saying that I will settle in and it will feel like home once I’ve got it looking how I want it to… or whether to listen to the anxiety and just stay here and not have to face any changes. I have written a list of pros and cons for moving and the pros far outweigh the cons but I am just so fucking scared of change/being somewhere unfamiliar and not knowing how I will adjust to it.

I’d better go as my appointment is in 20 minutes but I will post back tomorrow once I’ve had my second viewing by which time the decision will be made. Am I really ready to say goodbye to all those memories and move on to somewhere new? I don’t know if I have the strength. I’m scared, terrified in fact, but something at the back of my head is saying to me that this could be the best decision I ever make to get away from here and start again. What to do? I just don’t know…

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22:17 – Trying to make sense of things

25 Nov

This past week has been crap. In fact the last blog post I wrote where I was genuinely ‘OK’ goes back to the beginning of October. So that’s been at least six weeks of sliding further and further down the slippery slope and struggling to get through each day, struggling to just function, struggling to catch up with my studies… since I was last in a good ‘zone’ and was losing weight and excited about starting the university course.

In the past six weeks I’ve stopped attending appointments (haven’t been to any in 2-3 weeks now), I’ve stopped going outside when it’s light, have battled everyday with anxiety and paranoia, I’ve not really had any contact with anyone, I think constantly about self harming, I barely shower… I guess I’m not/have not been in the best of places lately.

It’s Sunday night and another long crappy shitty week comes to an end soon. And another one starts tomorrow. Will I be able to make it to the appointment with new CPN this week on Tuesday morning? I think if I don’t go I might fuck things up for myself getting help from the mental health team as that would be the third one in a row I wouldn’t have attended, and I’ve only met her once… seems like ages ago that I met her now.

I am one week behind with the uni course at the moment. I start week 11’s work tomorrow when I should be starting week 12 and week 11 is an intensive reading week so it’s going to be super hard to get the concentration and motivation levels up and get the work done. If I can get week 11 and 12 done over the next 7-10 days then I will just about have enough time to get my final essay written and submitted on time. So it is possible for me to catch up and to pass this module, it’s just a matter of actually doing it now.

The possibility I mentioned the other day about doing a house exchange with a girl I know is still a possibility. She wanted to come and see the flat on Friday but my anxiety was awful, it was giving me really bad stomach pains and hot and cold flushes and I felt really bad so I asked if we could swap to Saturday. Then Saturday I was still being suffocated by the anxiety so I cancelled again. She text me today and asked if I was feeling better and if she could pop down tomorrow at some point, to which I have said yes so I really hope tomorrow I wake up in a reasonably calm state. I woke up earlier than usual today and have been awake for most of it, so tonight I am going to try and get to sleep early and try and face a day in the day time, take the dogs (and myself) out for a walk when it’s light and try and whack this anxiety on the head and convince myself there is nothing to be scared of about people being able to see me. Easier said than done though even if it does sound ridiculous to some people.

Anyway back to the house swap, I have been so sure up until now that I am unhappy in this flat. Worse than unhappy. Miserable. Trapped. Stuck in the past and the memories. Unable to sleep in an actual bed in my bedroom, for 9 months now I have slept on the living room sofa. I was so sure I would be so much happier in a little house with a garden in a quiet little area and a new fresh start. And had this girl asked me even a couple of weeks ago when things were bad (but not this bad) I would have been jumping with excitement about the possibility of this house swap. Instead I get the news that this might be a possibility whilst I am suffering badly with anxiety and completely in self isolation mode, when my night’s are days and days are nights, and every time I think about moving out of here my anxiety starts getting worse again. WTF?! What is that all about?

I *know* I am not happy in this flat and I know that when I’m thinking more clearly that I desperately want out of here. Is the anxiety surrounding it because I’m scared of change – like even though I hate the way I’m currently living it’s what I know – or is it because I’m just so scared and anxious in general at the moment about going outside and seeing people that I just don’t want to let her or anyone in my flat at the moment? I don’t know. Part of me even wonders if I might be scared to say goodbye to the memories that haunt me in this flat… I know that probably sounds crazy but it feels like a very real possibility. It’s like I never go in the bedroom because it freaks me out, I get tortured with a variety of flashbacks and it really messes with my head because it can all be so intense… but I know that through that door that’s what that room has in store for me and I’m now wondering – does a part of me ‘need’ to know that those memories are just through that door? I find myself wondering if I’ll forget the memories as and when the time comes to leave this flat – and – I’m starting to realise that this scares me. I don’t want to forget some of them, but I know I need a fresh blank canvas. And maybe it is partly that which scares me, what if I get that blank canvas, that fresh start, and still feel this unhappy? What if I begin to feel guilty that I left my memories behind?

I remember when I got the keys for this flat six years ago and then for the first week I couldn’t sleep in it. Anxiety completely overtook me and I could only come down in the daytime at first, I’d potter around putting things where I wanted them, but would then go running back to my parents house (the spare room as my room was now empty) and I couldn’t understand why I couldn’t sleep here. But something was stopping me. If I remember correctly I ended up going out for drinks one night then decided at the end of the night that I was just going to walk along the road to the flat and see how long I could stay there. The alcohol helped a little to relax me but it was still really hard that first night. I think my ex then said he would stay for a couple of nights with me and from there onwards I was OK in here.

I think I get anxiety a hell of a lot surrounding change, new people, new places, the unfamiliar, and a whole lot more. And I know that it does always turn out OK in the end but it’s so hard to remember that mid anxiety attack.

Anyways I have rambled on long enough, I don’t even know what the point of this post actually was, just one of those moments where I needed to write out all the thoughts and worries in my head I guess.