Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Day 72.1

And today is Halloween. Not yesterday. Crap, that means all the dead people are going to come back now, doesn't it?

Day 72

I’m struggling a bit to spend time writing the old bloggo at the moment, especially because I seem rather irritable of late. This lack of enthusiasm for the medium is annoying because I know, when I eventually get round to reading ‘it’ in it’s entirety, I will wonder what was going on, on the days that I write very little. (Ha, probably nothing.) I also feel that I’m not keeping up my end of the ‘bargain’ by documenting this ‘whole experience’ in its entirety. Some days though, I just couldn’t give a shit, and think “am I ever going to read my own dull ramblings anyway”. Maybe the days that are lacking are just as indicative as the days when they are not. Oh who bloody knows? So with extreme enthusiasm (insert extreme enthusiasm here), I begin…

Week 3 of the Lustral. Things seem to have balanced out a lot, although I am very grumpy. The only thing that I’m a bit worried about is the amount of sleeping I’m doing – no less than 10 hours a night. Mind you, if you accumulate all the months on no sleep, I think I might have a few hours to catch up on. I also haven’t been napping during the day because I’m sleeping till midday. The dreams are still there every night, but now they are more complex and rambling rather than terrifying.

I haven’t wanted to self-harm over this past week, and I sometimes catch myself wishing the scars would go away. I’ve started wearing an old, favourite bracelet again. I haven’t been able to wear any jewellery on my hands or wrists for months, because pretty things look weird next to ugly scars. Anyway, I’m trying it out. It’s a struggle not to take it off, and to try not to keep my hands and arms covered all the time, but I think it might be a good thing to try to get back to ‘normal’ wear. I am acutely aware that people might be looking – especially when I’m trapped on public transport. I wonder what people think, or if they even notice.

This week I managed to write the dreaded ‘to do list’ that I have been putting off for a long time and, 2 sides of A4 later, I am slowly getting through the list, giving myself giant ticks along the way. I also have my dinner party to organize for the end of the week - so I’ve been kept pretty busy getting the flat visitor friendly. When you are living like a hermit you don’t see the piles of shite accumulating. Well, you do, but you just step over them and ignore the mess.

Yesterday, the infamous boil day, saw me strapped to the telephone and my computer for hours, trying to sort out domains and email accounts as my domain went down last week and I lost all my email. All very taxing. This also meant I had to be in touch with the ex - as he was helping out. All very taxing, like I said. But at least I tackled it. A few weeks, nay days ago, I would just have ignored it all and gone to bed.

I started reading again yesterday, after a brief break, which has been nice, especially since “Dora’s dad had been struck down with a crippling affliction”. Oh my.

With pleasure also comes pain and during my reading frenzy today I got rather annoyed, (a theme is definitely developing here) reading sections of Patrick Holford’s, “Optimum Nutrition for the Mind” in a shop. I got the distinct impression that he thought mental, ill health was a mere construction on the part of the ‘sufferer’; juxtaposing depression with neurosis. Which in my mind translated to hypochondria. Everyone’s an expert aren’t they? Bloody hair mineral analysis man. I also picked up a copy of that Mackenna man’s “I will make you thin” or whatever it is called, but put it down again because you can’t do the CD work if you are mental. It said so, which I thought was quite ironic. And don’t ever read “Depression for Dummies”, it is farcical.

Good deed of the day: I helped a girl on the train who was vomiting quietly. I’ve never seen anyone vomit and make no noise. People were just looking and nobody was helping, my worst nightmare. So I waded in. I am obviously going to Heaven now.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Day 71

I have a boil the size of Mount Vesuvius on my cheek. No wonder it's Halloween - I've come as a bloody witch. Or a gargoyle.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Day 70

Nighttime kicks up its heels and laughs in my general direction. It has been a sloth like day, but mainly pleasant ‘till about 6pm. Then I got tired/bored/fed up and am now just lying on the couch staring through candles at the TV.

There has been a certain jolly-ness to this weekend. There have even been a few songs and the occasional wiggle of the hip. Bizarrely. Maybe it was the ‘feel good’ films I rented on Saturday? If that’s the case then I’d better get renting more, and fast. “They call me mellow, yellow…” (Well, yesterday was green actually.)

I also did a strange thing today. I invited three of my girlfriends round for dinner at my house on Friday night. I can’t believe I did it. It feels like such a huge thing. Well, I suppose it is. I haven’t had a dinner party for about 9 or 10 years. I used to do it a lot, in my previous life, and I’ll probably cook the same things. Hilarious. My repartee has hardly had the chance to expand since then, has it?

Now I just have to get the house in order, plan the food, the tunes and conversation. (Got to think of something other than my medication to talk about.) Jesus, what have I done? No, it will be fine. But, I can’t cancel. I cannot allow myself to back out now. Not at any point this week. No matter how hard it gets.

It feels like an ‘outing’ of sorts, like a debutante being welcomed into society – just with less organdy and tulle – although you never know... I look over the flat and think – “this bears nothing of how I want people to see me.” Must fix that.

Bollocks, still haven’t paid the bills or sorted out the lack of funds. Must also, not procrastinate this week. Email has also gone AWOL, which is a bit annoying as it makes me feel like I’m alone. Weird that. Bit like bloody Tom Hanks talking to that football on “Castaway”.

I cried when Wilson floated out to sea. I have inanimate objects as friends and I talk to them, sometimes we have quite pleasant conversations. Although my friends don’t have faces fashioned out of my blood. Yet.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Day 69.1

I slept for over 10 hours, watched 1 episode of Lost, 3 hours of TV and 2 films.

That’s not normal, right?

I suck at this.

Day 69

I joined the local video shop today. And then watched films.

That's normal, right?

Friday, October 27, 2006

Day 68

I can't do the 'love' thing. And I probably have an eating disorder.

2 doses of counselling today, one at 10am and the other at 1pm. The above information was gleaned from the sessions.

Woohoo.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Day 67

‘If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, try again.’ Hmmm. Are you sure? How about ‘If at first you don’t succeed, fall into your bed, pull the duvet up over your head and wait there till the thing you were trying to do, goes away…’

Some of those that are paid to give good advice, in a therapeutic format, have suggested that I may not ‘want’ to get better. I always honour such statements with the disdain I feel is appropriate. However, there is always that gnawing feeling in the pit of my stomach that suggests I might think they are right. Who would I actually be without my depression? It defines my every move. It defines who I am when I wake up in the morning and who I am when I go to bed at night. It is the reason that I hide away in my house, the reason that I have put on weight. The reason that I am single, and above all the reason that I am not doing anything with my life that I truly want to.

My depression is not a visible thing, so the scars on my hands and arms are there to define the depression. They are there to remind me that the reason for all of the above is because I have an illness, not that I am just lazy or incapable and unmotivated. (Like I think I am on a daily basis. Oh the contradictions…) Perhaps it is not just a co-incidence that when the scars begin to heal – I self harm again?

I read this recently in the Guardian - the context being, Shantell, 28, who suffers from anorexia, discussing her own self-harming scars - “Sometimes when I see the cuts, I’m afraid it’s going to interfere with relationships. Who wants to see that on their lover? Other times I embrace it as part of me. Even though I’m not 100% better, it reminds me of where I’ve come from. Of what I’ve survived.”

Occasionally I can understand what she means. Other times, I’m not so sure. A male friend of mine once said, “maybe someone would find them quite interesting?” when I was bemoaning that no man would come near me, (with a barge pole) with scars like mine. I instantly thought he was meaning a pervert that might be into pain, but maybe he was thinking that someone might find it interesting to see where I had come from, and what I had survived…? I can only live in hope.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Day 66

dddkf cndxxjfdssahahahsg.hkhkfdsnfdsdsxmv.mh/.g cxagsjg/,cxnszndd,hhnfsn,h.,hnznvcc,h.kmge

That's what I'm thinking.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Day 65.1

...and then I hauled my ass of the couch, cleaned the kitchen, did the washing up, put on a load of washing, cleaned out the hamster and made some proper food.

All's well that ends well.

Day 65

A tricky/sticky day today. All my pending chores felt like treacle and I couldn’t flick any of it off. Avoidance levels were at a premium.

I had a follow up, ‘voluntary’ meeting with my advisor at the local job centre this morning, (funny how they never feel voluntary) where we went through a tedious meeting to find out about my eligibility for working Tax Credits. (“Just something for the future”, he said.) You have to be a super brain to unravel all their jargon. He gave me a ream of paper printouts to read at my leisure. Yawn. It would be interesting to understand it all, but listening to him I was drifting off into unpaid bills territory and got stuck there. I have piles of unopened bills and paperwork lying around the flat and they are all screaming for my attention. So when I got home I went to bed to sleep. And managed to avoid the day, pretty much altogether. Well, the afternoon anyway. Sleep comes naturally when there are important things that I should be attending to. How ironic. I don't have to see him again until the beginning of December - I explained the set back with meds and self harming. Small mercies?

Fresh start tomorrow and all that…

I did, rather interestingly make an unprecedented trip to the library after my meeting this morning. I was also shocked to realise, when emptying my book bag that I had managed to unthinkingly pick up a pile of books on e-commerce and marketing. Old habits die hard obviously.

A yellow sticker day today, based on mood alone, but for lack of attention to everyday necessities I get a no score. I still haven’t done the washing up since Sunday, and those bloody bills. I can’t be arsed cooking so I am eating weird combinations of food. Dinner consisted of 6 prawns and some cucumber. (And a cup of hot chocolate and a few fags.)

Monday, October 23, 2006

Day 64

In a meeting. With my mind...

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Day 63

Smell – the power of it, and the memories it invokes; an amazing sense of dejavu. It (smell) is playing an almost uncomfortable part in my daily life at the moment. I find myself remembering through smells of products, clothes and tastes, the disjointed memories of past lives. My past lives. Times in London primarily. Recovering important periods of time that I had forgotten.

They come to me in an uneasy confusion, being instantly back in certain times and places without immediately knowing when and where I was. It fills me with panic momentarily, as if I might re-discover some horrid experience that I do not want to re acquaint myself with. I find myself spiraling through a rolodex of memory, of time and space, until I find that exact timeframe that I associate with a particular smell; always with one eye shut less I come face to face with an unwanted demon of some description.

This morning the crisp snap of frost, the coldness of the room I inhabit, the taste of tea and a cigarette on my tongue, a song playing in the background takes me somewhere old. I feel the low ebb of panic rise until I find myself remembering happy times. This too makes for sadness, because I was happy then and I am not now?

It first began with finding again a moisturiser I used to use that I found quite by chance, playing with my sister in the cosmetic store she works in. The smell of the product enabled me to remember getting dressed in the mornings, applying the moisturizer and hiking up designer tights and slim line outfits over my then skinny frame. It was wintertime and I was experiencing the first flush of love with the most recent ‘ex’ after coming out of the maddening relationship with the ‘ex, ex’. I was happy, confident, living on my own and in control of my eating.

The symbolism between being in control of my eating, and therefore life, plays heavily in patterns throughout my lifecycle. When I am heavy, like I am now, I feel out of control. I was heavy in the latter stages of being with the ‘ex, ex’- comfort eating being my forte. The food and therefore the fat became a physical fortress protecting me from the onslaught of the verbal abuse and rejection that was developing all around me. I don’t know what prompted me to muster up the energy to loose the weight back then, but I did, and began a mind-blowing act of controlling the food that went into my mouth. With the shedding pounds I gained confidence, but above all control, and some scraps of self worth that somehow enabled me to flee a violent rage that had gripped my ex the night I fled from our home, fearing for my life. This pattern has repeated itself with unfailing regularity throughout my existence.

It began with my first bout of depression and anxiety when I was 16, straight after my abortion, when I lost control of my life the first time round. I was so afraid that I was ill/would be ill, that I ate nothing but white rolls and bananas for over a year until I was slightly skeletal looking. Food became the enemy. This act of contrition fucked up my body rather amazingly and I developed the inability to eat a balanced diet thereafter without ballooning in size. My body was thrown completely off balance, unable to digest the simplest carbohydrates, dairy and sugars. The only way to keep myself at my preferred weight was to eat a very limited diet of mainly protein and green vegetables, soy products and herbal teas, a purification process of sorts. I was doing this when I was in London when I was happiest, some three Christmases ago now.

With the recent acquisition of the memorable moisturizer it makes me want to clamor back to that time and place, to clamor back into the person and physical body that I was/had then. So much so that I went shopping yesterday and bought only the afore mention foodstuffs, proteins and green vegetables. So I begin what is for me, an agonizing departure away from food again. This is not to say that I binge eat now, far from it, my diet is extremely healthy as I began a stringent healthy eating plan when I got more in control of my depression last year. 5 fruit and veg a day, maybe more – no cakes, or sweets or refined, processed foods. I swallow more supplements than you can imagine, hoping that I am somehow trying to undo the damage that I know the onslaught of all these chemical medications that I take daily must be doing to my body and system. I am hoping that by controlling the food again, it will have a knock on effect within my life, and that I will regain the slim line body that is me. That I believe is ‘me’.

I have become so unlike myself in this bloated form and daily I look in the mirror at myself and see no resemblance of self, looking back. I just see a swollen face, puffy eyes and increasing girth that can only remind me of the look of someone taking hardcore steroids.

It seems that this road to recovery is all about tricking the mind in whatever way you can.

Mum has just left to make her way back to her home and I am battling against confusion and panic. The diazepam has already been swallowed and I sit here typing feeling the panic subside and make way for mindless tiredness. “Keep busy today”, mum said closing the car door before pulling away from the curb. She knows what today and the following days will be like for me. I know too, and that is less than an easy feeling for today marks another attempt at going solo, something that has eluded me thus far. Wish me luck?

Day 62

Saturday 21 October 2006. Couldn’t post when I got home because the lappentoppen was misbehaving.

I am just back from a night out at a beautiful dinner with friends - a pleasurable meeting of sorts, but one that leaves me realizing that my social skills are not at their best these days. I looked around the dinner table this evening at the gathered couples, thinking they are so at ease here, and I am beginning to implode with anxiety.

It seems that at the time when they were all growing into couples and getting their shit together, I was shying away from that life. I was living with the ‘ex, ex’ in London and I was too embarrassed to socialize with him because I always knew what he would become with a skin full of alcohol and ‘recreationals’. I could ‘manage’ him best I could behind closed doors but didn’t want to expose others to his schizophrenic temperament. It was all too shameful. I also was battling with my own demons and resultant lack of confidence so missed out this huge chunk of both personal and social development.

I hope that in time this will all get easier for me, and as my mum reminded me last night “They are not recovering from an illness, so of course you think that they will be doing better than you.” There’s that weird word again, illness. Is that really what I have?

I also know that I am my own harshest critic and that (most probably) my hosts and dear friends would think that I was just my old self. It’s hard to explain that I may be that on the outside, but it is far from what I feel under my skin. ‘Public face’ rules supreme.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Day 61.1

Do depressed people have sex - is it allowed? Or are we too dangerous?

Day 61

A busy day today. Counselling with the amazing Friday counsellor, and then meeting with ma and a wee boy that my mum used to look after in a shared care scenario. He's grown so big from the wee boy that wasn't the size of tuppence when he first came into our lives - he's 15 now, with a recently broken voice to match. We went for lunch and took him to the cinema to see "The Guardian", rather a good choice considering the cast. So difficult to choose a film that he would enjoy, but I think we managed it with rescue helicopters and thousand foot waves crashing over a giant screen.

A green sticker day today - so much so that I laughingly told mum this morning I felt like "London Rozza". I.e. grown up and utterly capable. Things have slumped slightly tonight into a more yellowish hue, but only because i'm pooped from walking the length and breadth of the city.

Annoyingly feeling the need for some male company this evening. I've been staving off these feelings for a while now, but some 'sin's of the flesh' wouldn't go a miss...singledom definitely has it's downsides. Akin to the mood du jour, i'm listening to some lonesome songs on the old itunes and clicking away at the old keyboard instead. No mention of double clicking any mice here....please.

Mum is still with me, trying to lessen the blow of extraction from the comfortable bosom of her house and re-entry into flying solo in mine. I imagine she will be here until Sunday, so that would put pay to any male suitors arriving on the doorstep - if there was a line up; not that there is...

Will download the goings on of the counselling session tomorrow - if I can make head and tail of it. Too tired to think at the moment and a suitable chick flick awaits my attention. Yawn.

But a greenie, nonetheless, yes indeed. Please let this be the way of things to come. Hilarious that I woke up this morning feeling excited but couldn't decide if it was indeed excitement, or a panic attack waiting to happen. Positivity feels so alien to me at the moment - one forgets what it feels like, and treats such unlikely emotions with the utmost of suspicions.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Day 60

We came home today. The four hour drive was long and the weather was diabolical. Good job my mother was driving for two reasons; 1) I can’t drive and 2) I’m not allowed to operate heavy machinery. The rhythmic pounding of the rain on the windshield drove me insane. I think I spent most of the journey with my jaws clamped tightly together. That was until we found a dodgy Rock Anthems CD and I let rip - quietly.

I was dreading walking into the flat and it was just as I expected - I wanted to turn and run in the opposite direction. I have bastardized this place to the point of no return, and now associate all the bad days with being here - hence the crazy, sage cleansing antics (that we haven’t done yet). Upon our return I started cleaning like a madwoman and have only just stopped. The lounge actually looks passable now and is a complete miracle considering the state it was left in – furniture piled on top of furniture in a manic moment. I also chucked out about a thousand plastic bags, landfill sites across the land I do apologise, but it was an emergency. I kept finding them everywhere with bits of paper in them. I’m sure there’s an equal amount left to find. All I could think of was an old flat mate whose parting line was “I’m moving out because you leave bags lying around everywhere.” She was a bit mental – but I think she might have been right.

All my shit is annoying me immensely today and I want to chuck out everything I own. I felt like this when I lived in London and first got unwell. Stuff everywhere. It gets unmanageable when I’m on a downer and crap collects in every corner that I inhabit. Mess, mess, mess, mess, mess and bits of paper. Christ, you’ve never seen so much bloody paper. Oh and I started on the rollies again. Mum is gutted. Weirdly it makes me feel like ‘me’ again – if that makes any sense? Probably can’t get used to the minty fresh mouth – that’s all.

I have so much to do now I’m back – having two weeks away from my ‘life’ leaves a lot to attend to when one returns. Mainly form filling. Jesus, God almighty, bloody forms. “Yes, I’m still ill.” “No, my circumstances haven’t changed.” A ‘to do list’, I need a ‘to do list’. Everything is running around in my head like my baby hamster in his exercise ball. (I think he’s forgiven me for being less than attentive with him before we left on our impromptu trip. Probably only because he’s just spent two weeks at his Granny’s getting spoiled rotten.)

Even though today was a lesson in dealing with extreme displacement anxiety, I reckon I might give myself a green sticker for effort. Yes, I think I will.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Day 59

I had to cancel my appointment with the job seeker man tomorrow because I will still be in the frozen north. It is rather frozen here. My Friday counsellor thinks me writing contracts with him about what jobs I am going to look for is detrimental to my progress. I agree. Nothing like a big dollop of contract writing to scare the bejesus out of a person. Must get better, must be normal, must get a job. Aagh.

I'm not going to admit that they might be right, (job = normality) but there is something about them telling me to do it and me wanting to do it by myself which makes me go all weird in the head. I do want to do it by myself - get a job and be normal that is, but it is still just a bit terrifying. Baby steps...

It is raining perfectly vertically. Time to go back home.

Day 58

Tuesday 17 October 2006.

The gorgeous flat has gone already. Crap.

I had a curious stabbing pain above my eye all day so I slept. And slept some more. Not one of my greatest achievements.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Day 57

Today I started looking for a new flat. Annnnd I think we found one - no sooner than I had mentioned it to my bestest friend, than she was on the case and on the blower with a potential in mind. We've just got to find out how difficult it will be to get all the housing benefit etc changed over to a new place; oh and go and see it. It's going to mean new doctors and a new CPN I would imagine, as I will be out of my current catchment area - so all in all - a big deal. I just hope it's worth it and that it all works out for the best. The toss up being: to move to where my friends are in the city; or to move to where my parents are in the Highlands. I chose the city. I've also got to start thinking about working again - to some degree at least. Onwards and upwards...

Oh yeah, and the bank have screwed up, yet again. Honestly, they are the most incompetent bank I have ever come across. (That was a lie - they all seem unable to do the right thing with my money.) I dread to think what administrative mess awaits me back at home in the city... Keeping on top of both of the benefits I am entitled to is a full time job, let alone trying to remember to pick up prescriptions and sick lines, manage insurance and God knows what else. I have no idea how people without help manage. Come to think of it, they probably just don't.

Today was a yella fella. Passable, with smile(s) at intervals.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Day 56

Today.

The juxtaposition between myself and this earth shatteringly, quiet place is quite alarming.

The difference between the noise in my head and the stillness around me makes me want to combust. To yell, to shriek and run around and hiss into their faces, "Can you not see it; can you not see the madness?"

"Why do you not react?"

Instead they just walk around silently like ghosts. Maybe I am the only one who is living? Maybe the rest of them are too numb to feel this murderous existence.

Today I wanted/want to scratch. My head, so busy with that thought, that I came to the beach to sit on the sand and draw and look at the water. And now, as I sit here writing, I worry that my 'friend' will show up, here in front of all these nice, quiet people. The unpredictable friend that might suddenly strip off in front of a priest and swear at a police man or just shout loudly in the ear of a passing old person, so that they might have a heart attack right there on the spot and drop down dead. All flicking tongue, rolling eyes, twitching limbs and pointy fingers.

I twitch, steadily under my skin praying that she won't show up by tapping pencil to paper. She never actually does - show up that is, but I keep expecting her to - and that makes me jumpy. I just keep squashing her down. Down, down, down.

Probably the most scary place the sea - in the depths of the ocean so dark and all consuming, grabbing at you with it's watery limbs. Taunting and daring you to come under - to see what it can see. I wonder if these dark places, the places that people walk into in the depths of dispair, that they hang from, lie over and under are not somehow quite beautiful in the peace that they offer?

I am frustrated that I cannot capture the beautiful melancholia with a pencil. It represents nothing of the depth of emotion.

Funny now the juxtaposition between bleak thoughts and my mother sitting in the Quaker meeting place. All still and quiet and plain.

Oil and water.
Chalk and cheese.
Marshmallows and concrete...

Can't you see it, scrawled all over my face? "Liable to bite. Don't come near."

Day 55

Saturday 14 October 2006.

I played frisbee on the beach with my mum, step dad and sister today. Then we walked along the beach deciding how we would spend our winnings if we won the lottery tonight. My sister and I dangled from a monkey swing and swung round and around on a giant maypole with seats dangling from it. I nearly puked and we laughed 'till we almost wet our undergarments.

Later my sister and I watched a film from our youth - "Adventures in Babysitting" - we were waiting for two lines... "scrape, scrape, scrape on the babysitter's face..." and "Spaghetti-O's with meat!" We ate Thai food and chocolate cake and flicked through clothing catalogues.

It was freezing in her house. Possibly because she lives right by the sea and possibly because it is getting as cold as winter up here. Love it.

Now that sounded quite like a normal person's day. What joy!

Day 54

Friday 13 October 2006 - I survived it.

I had my counselling via the telephone today and I go so stressed out before the call I had to have a Diazepam. I also learned to make the distinction between depression and anxiety. Which is good - because I was taking the Diazepam when I was depressed, as well as when I was agitated, which is/was pointless because it does nowt for depression. Very good to realise, although slightly dismaying, as revelations such as this leave one rather at sea when a tidal wave of depression hits.

The phone session was more OK than I expected. I actually felt I got more said/covered because I had to concentrate so hard on listening that I couldn't fall into a dwalm. I got all the crapola off my chest about the shite-ness of the NHS and their inability to provide adequate services/support for those with mental health problems; and about the treatment of the situation last week, when I was ill/having weird reaction to the tricyclic drugs. My Friday counsellor reiterated that she thought I had a reaction to the tricyclic's. I am inclined to agree as my body is reacting wildly to this sudden change of events - on one, off one, on another one... My usual 28 day, I-can-set-my-watch-by-it-cycle has gone for a complete burton with my monthly 'visit' coming waaaay early, vanishing and coming back again and hanging around like an unwelcome guest to this very day. I cannot produce a crap that Dr Gillian would be proud of. I still can't eat certain foods because they make me want to vom - a textural thing I believe. My hair is falling out, my scalp is falling off and I have boils the size of golf balls on my usually peachy complexion. What joy.

I talked to her about Evil Girl and how she keeps showing up and messes with things, my mind mainly. I did wonder briefly if she would request to speak to my mother after that little gem was let loose, but she took it all in her "I've heard it all" stride. Good for her. We pondered on where the 'voice' of Evil Girl might have come from. I know exactly where she comes from. Years of "You make shit decisions." "You fuck everything up." "You couldn't possibly do that." "You are the root of all evil." And my personal favourite, out of the mouth of my adoring Papa: "You will never amount to anything." If she, (Evil Girl) has her way, I think I just may prove him right.

We also discussed 'mixed messages' as I constantly complain that I feel like a walking dichotomy, and we came up with the following: The "Should I be on my own?" message versus, the "I want to be on my own" message, versus the "Everything will be OK once I have someone to share my life with" message, versus the good 'ole "Human Condition: mate and reproduce" message. Honestly. All small parts of a massive off balance structure, but hey, at least we are breaking down the big, bad ass, shoulder tumour that this whole nonsense has become.

Mum used to tell us when we were wee that we had to learn to be "OK by ourselves" before we got into any form of serious relationship. I have been blundering about thinking, "don't go near any boys because you might fall in love and then be in a relationship and you're not OK on your own yet..." That was until my helpful counsellor pointed out that I am OK on my own - i.e. I can fill a car with petrol, I can balance a cheque book, I can pay the bills, do the shopping, amuse myself (well, for 5 minutes at least) and look after a small animal... Boom. Yet another mixed message bites the proverbial dust... What if one was to be bold enough to say that it is OK to want to share your life with someone after all. I heard an adult (yes, I do keep forgetting that I am also one of those) say that being single, sucked. He is 65 and on his own and hates it. We, (the family and I) had all been thinking he was a confirmed bachelor and deeply happy with his single ness - especially my mother who would use him as an example of exemplorary singledom, oftentimes to me. I wanted to kiss him. I wanted to jump up and down and shake my ample bottom in my mother's face, (she was party to the same conversation) and say, "see - it's not just me, and it is OK to feel like that." It was as if someone had given me permission to feel OK with how I felt. ( I always feel I need permission to 'go against' The Mother.) Sometime I think parents should take more care in what they drum into their young ones minds, because as well meaning as it may seem at the time - over the years all these 'helpful tips' turn into almighty roars. Especially when you are also told not to trust your own mind and that you should listen and do what others say instead.

And so, with another appointment booked in for next week, I went straight from full force counselling, to full on socialising with a 7 year old when my Mum's cousin came to visit with his wee girl - that we had never met. I ended up paddling in the North sea with her, which was rather cold, but gained me years of Brownie points. Unfortunatey now, I may also have Leprosy, and at the very least the Plague.

I pretty OK day considering I was gutted that I didn't get home for the party tonight. Perhaps a good thing though, because I get a bit melancholy after social events. And would have probably ended up back here with another war wound. Plus I still hate my flat and don't want to go back there ever again.

Day 53

Called my Friday psychologist and asked her if I could have a phone consult with her this week, as demon child has taken over and I cannot get her out of the way enough to get back to my flat in the city. I stressed my head off about this decision all day yesterday and all of last night. Bloody poof.

Went to the local hippy commune today and bought sage to burn in the flat. Yes I did. I was reading a book about 'space clearing' and it said, burn sage and flick water (with a feather) and salt in the corners of rooms. I am going to do it as soon as I get home to get rid of all those bad ass demons that have conglomerated there over these past few weeks. Desperate times and all that... It might stop me from hating it so much. It's a good job I'm on medication or I'd never get away with this stuff.

(Day 53: Thursday 12 October 2006)

Day 52

Imagine my horror... It is Sunday (15 October 2006) today and I have just realised that I have lost 5 days of this week. I shall now try to recover the lost days through the medium of blogging. Piff, paff, poof...

Today is actually Day 52: Wednesday 11 October 2006 and I was generally considered to be "out to lunch".

See what I did there? So clever...

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Day 51

Little pieces of cornflakes. That's what my head feels like today. Cornflakes. Yesterday, breadcrumbs - tomorrow who knows; it could be something gross like tuna. The 'illness' is starting to go, thank the Lord. I only had to take one round of anti-nausea tablets today and two rounds of painkillers. Big improvement.

It has rather knocked me for six though, all this coming off the Citalopram, being sans medication, going onto the Lofepramene, getting sick; going cold turkey off the Lofepramene, hitting a low and then starting the newbies - the Lustral - yesterday. My confidence has gone again. Well, what little I had managed to build up in the few weeks I saw Dr Resident Shrink, (at least 6 weeks ago now...)

I have counselling on Friday morning, (in 3 days time) and I am trying to psyche myself up to getting on the bus back to the city Thursday evening...by myself. The 'talking ones self into everything' gets rather wearing after a time. It's like having a really unconfident child attached to you, that you are monitoring constantly; constantly cajoling, urging them to move forward. Onto every-single-little-step-forward. Explaining why it will be OK to sit on the bus for 4 hours. How everyone else on the bus will be in the same position - delfecting arguments of: "Not everyone else on the bus is mental." "Not everyone else on the bus is on medication." "Not everyone else on the bus has been ill for the last two weeks." "Not everyone else on the bus has been taking anti- sickness tablets." "Not everyone else on the bus might die from frear that something horrible might happen to them during those 4 long hours. Like they might combust. They might explode in a obscene pool of fitting, vomiting, faeces."

"Not everyone else on the bus is the same as me." Therefore: "I am a freak and can't do it by myself." But: "Then you have to make your mum drive 4 hours there and 4 hours back." And: "You are 29 years old, for fuck's sake." And: "That makes you pathetic - that makes you a complete freak." And: "You don't deserve any help." And: "You are stupid for feeling this way anyway, so fuck off and get a fucking grip and sort yourself out. " "Fucking, stupid, piece of shit. "

But I will get on the bus on Thursday. I know will. Because secretly part of me knows, that this week I can get on a bus on my own. 'We' just have to go through all this trauma before the inevitable can possibly happen. And that's only because I'm feeling a bit better this week. This week, as in the week that started yesterday. Not because this is something I can do at anytime, whenever I feel like it, because...she does get in my way a lot.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Day 50

At Mum's.

Started Lustral today very reluctantly. Still got headache bug thing and feel like I have Bell's Palsy on the left side of my face. The nausea has stopped with tablets so at last can eat small morsels of food.

Had to cancel my CPN appointment this morning which I was fretting about all weekend - Mum is worried that they will pull the plug on the support if I keep cancelling appointments and I thought she (the CPN) would shout at me again. Mum is also worried that I top myself if left alone - or that at the very least I will continue to self harm...can't win really. I was worried that I would top myself Saturday night, so I'm glad I'm not in my house. It's never something I think about with intention - I'm just terrified that I do it unconsciously, like if I stop concentrating on being 'normal' I might 'accidentally' swallow all of my medication or fall onto a large, sharp knife. I am dreading going back to the city now as I now associate bad things with my flat. It's become a dark and twisty place -just like my insides. The CPN was actually nice to me this morning, so either she is over her post traumatic stress after returning to work from 3 weeks vacation - or she's just being nice because she's going to dump me as soon as I'm back, or she might just be being nice because I've obviously gone a bit mental again. (Self harming = mental)

I shall be 'out to lunch' for the next wee while, as I try to gather remnants of grey matter that congregates in little mounds of falling breadcrumbs at my feet.

Day 49

Out to lunch.

(Sunday 8 October 2006)

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Day 48

Mum's coming to rescue me...AGAIN.

How much of a failure do I feel? She will be here at 1pm and then we are heading straight to the Highlands. I am taking the hamster because I am a very bad hamster mother. I have neglected my charge since the madness/sickness set in. I am also a very bad person for not being able to cope on my own. I am also very bad for not being able to keep my appointmnet with my shoutey CPN on Monday because I won't be here. Fucking stupid piece of crap system.

Somone who is on the 'severe mental health illness register' or whatever the fuck it is called, calls an emergency service at night saying she has just self harmed and she needs to know what medication to take to calm things down. She doesn't call her mum because she feels bad that she keeps having to call her - so she calls the number she's been given for emergencies. The CPN on duty at the end of the emergency number doesn't know what medication I can take. He asks if he can call me back. In the meantime I kill myself. Well, no I didn't actually but I nearly gave myself a new haircut with my razor.

The doctor (house visit) yesterday reckons I did have a virus after all and she reckoned the sick/faint thing was due to lack of nutrition - because I was feeling so sick and I couldn't eat and then because I couldn't eat I felt sick. She gave me a freaking suppository for the nausea. At least she left me to 'insert' it by myself.

So still feeling sick and wobbly and my hand hurting like hell, I await the return of my maman. Crap.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Day 47.1

Like a little timb bomb, ticking away. Tick, tock, tick, tock. Should have been able to spot the signs - but I thought I had to cope on my own. So I got in the bath and scrubbed and scratched at my hands again. Then I called the mental centre spluttering through my details checking to see if I could take the diazepam. They called me back and i smoothed my hair in the meantime. I think i would like some yellow tights. Ochre maybe. I put the elastic band round my wrist again.

called mum. she's going to try to come tomorrow if i'm not better by then. must be such a pain to have to deal with this. with me like this. i tried so hard to be on my own. i really did. but something wasn't right. no. no. no. bet i won't come back. bet you i won't.

Day 47

Still here. Still sick and waiting for the doctor to come to my house.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Day 46.1

Still sick. Jesus. And very weepy. In fact, I cannot stop weeping. Or feeling reeeealy nauseous.

Spoke to the GP today - she is making the decisions now - as the shrink decided he didn't need to see me. And I am starting a drug called Sertraline aka Lustral. We used to have drug rep mugs with Lustral on them. I think they were yellow with a smiley on them. They used to be my favourite - how ironic.

Oh and my CPN was 'cross' with me for cancelling my counselling appointment yesterday. Nice. What am I a fucking child?

I also had to cancel my counselling appointment tomorrow as I doubt I'm gong to feel up to much by then. Being ill on your own sucks.

Day 46

I am in a very bad mood and my floorboards have lots of cracks in them. Some of which I have decided to fill with toilet paper. That's where the spiders come from you see. And where the smell of my neighbours frying every-foodstuff-known-to-man comes from and where spills the acrid smoke from their Benson & Hedges. I can't even stomach smoking my own twisty little rollies - never mind smelling their typically stupid ones.

I still feel sick and am eating salty pretzels to try to make myself feel less sick. Whilst lying on my bed, scowling.

This is all very irritating.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Day 45.1

The doctor asked me today if there was any way I could be pregnant. Because of the nausea. I said, "no" and she said, "are you sure - no way at all...?"

Not unless it's Jesus' brother...

Day 45

I have one hand holding my head tightly so it won't wobble and I won't throw up or fall over, and the other is typing. Hilarious.

The doctor (that I saw this morning) doesn't think I have a bug because I have no temperature (?). She was reluctant to do anything until the shrink had seen me - but if I don't see him within 2 days, she will shoot from the hip and make a decision on her own about medication and what to try next. In the meantime I've to stop the Lofepramene and hopefully I won't go crazy.

When I eventually got home (I had to walk very slowly for fear I might puke/fall over/pass out) and I cried for Britain, Wales and the Commonwealth. It seems so pathetic, but everything seems so futile at the moment and no-one seems prepared to go out on a limb and say, "Hey, you feel shit - lets do something about that."

I called my mum up north and asked her to call the mental centre for me, to talk to my CPN/psychologist and to cancel my counselling appointment for this afternoon. She did and was a little ferocious I think. So, the psychologist there is going to round up my 'team' and they are going to make a decision about my medication etc, then the shrink is going to call my GP. I think it's great how he, (the shrink) can make all these decisions about what to try me with next without even seeing me himself.

In the meantime, my fabulous Friday psychologist - not from the mental centre - called to check in as we'd called her yesterday too. She said that the doctor she'd spoken to about my medication said there seemed to be many more side effects with the tricyclic dugs than with the SSRI's and that I seemed to be suffering with them. I must say I agree, especially after trawling the interweb last night trying to find answers to this little problem...so I'm putting in a request to go onto another SSRI, without the helpful and very flattering, exaggerated weight gain option.

Excuse me while I go dry heave...

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Day 44.1

Mum called the doctors, the psychologist and the CPN on my behalf today - I couldn't get up never mind get to the phone. Still feeling unbelievably crap tonight. My CPN is going to get the shrink to see me ASAP. The real shrink, not his understudy. My psychologist thinks my symptoms may be side effects of the tricyclic. The doctor is seeing me tomorrow morning.

Just got to get through tonight. This is surprisingly scary.

Day 44

Ugh. Wobble, shake, shake, wobble. And that's lying down.

Last night turned into something out of a Hammer Horror film and this morning I am riding the waves of the aftermath. I shall elaborate: I was hoovering; head almost upside down, in the boudoir when all of a sudden I thought I was going to faint, die, vomit, pass out, die. I could hardly stand straight, was drenched in a freezing cold sweat seconds after feeling sick, had palpitations and was shaking faster than a Dulux paint mixer in B&Q.

I tried to lie down - no, that wasn't going to work, I tried to close my eyes - no, that really wasn't going to work. I did the 'cold compress' thing. I sipped water. Then I had a giant panic attack because I seriously thought my number was up. I lay in bed gripping onto the hospital bars, like there was really no tomorrow, (so much so my arms ache this morning) until I finally passed out.

Horrible. Really, horrible.

Episodes like this have been happening a lot over the past week - not to the severity of last nights little trip - but still a lot. It worries me slightly because I don't know if it is pure 'anxiety' or the new medication. It also hightens the feelings that I can't cope on my own. It's times like this when I wish I had a carer. May sound rather OTT to the layman, but honestly when shit like this is going down it is terrifying, and you wish there was someone with you to grip onto for the duration of the ride - or at least to be able to ask, "do you see that black creepy thing in the corner/running across the floor/walking past the door, or is it just me?"

That's right, rather horribly, yesterday I also realised that all the paranoia and seeing things out of the corner of my eyes is happening again. When I ventured to the library yesterday afternoon I had to leave quite sharpish because I saw things moving and creeping all over their delightfully twirly, patterned carpet. Well, not quite sharpish, because I was quite intrigued by the crazy little visions I was having and got a bit stuck on staring at them. Then I got a crashing headache and had to hold onto the shelving units to stop wobbling. Last night I also had to move my bed against the opposing bedroom wall because the previous night I kept jumping out of my skin, thinking that someone was trying to get in my room through the glass panelled door. Disturbed peripheral vision and paranoia equated to anti psychotic drugs last time.

And so, I creep around my flat today, hoping there will be no sudden noises or bright lights. I'm sure the neighbours are enjoying the view through the window of my crawling from chair, to sofa, to bed in half of yesterdays clothes, half pyjamas and half bare ass, because I can't quite co-ordinate the getting dressed part of the day, or do sums. I pray that they (the neighbours) will be gentlemanly enough to avert their eyes, should that see anything untoward.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Day 43

I am dressed. Imagine my surprise...not washed, but I had a bath last night so I think I'm still clean. I have also re-potted a plant. A rather nice peace lilly is now living in a nice big plant pot. Although, it'll probably die now because I messed with it's root systems.

I am also re-arranging the house - again. I do it every week I think. My desk, that I never sit at, is the only item that remains in the same place. And the fridge - although I did move it about three times before it found it's final resting place in a charming alcove. Oh well. A sure sign that I'm not settled where I am as my dearest mama keeps reminding me. Well, I'm not, so then this manic, moving behaviour is appropriate; yes? I am also being driven mental by my own clutter. I honestly don't know where all the shit that gets stacked up on shelves, and under beds comes from. Actually there isn't anything under my bed apart from a half written diary, because if there was something under there - I wouldn't be able to check for bogeymen. (Yes, I still do that.) And in cupboards before I go to sleep. But there is a lot of crapola everywhere else in this flat.

I have also found out (today) that wearing an apron around the house makes you do things; like the washing up and tidying. (I am trying to keep awake because I took a sleeping tablet at 3.30am when I was going nuts because I couldn't sleep and now I just want to sleep. Which is what I did all day yesterday. So I have to stay awake until bedtime. That's the rules.)

I have also been the worst snoop-doggy-dog today and was sneaking around the tinternet finding things out about ex boyfriends. One of them is now married. He looked a bit weird in his suit I must say.

And now I must try and eat something. I have this weird thing going on with my mouth at the moment - I don't like opening it for anything larger than a Wotsit. Which is quite good because that's about the only thing I fancy eating. All food tastes too foody which is a phenomenon that I discovered early on in the meltdown last year. When I go off kilter the first thing to go is the mouth. It clamps shut tighter than my knees when someone talks about stitches and childbirth.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Day 42

I cannot find reason or words to post today.