Thursday, November 30, 2006

Day 102

I am lying here lying to myself that things aren't so bad. Yet, today I have barely been vertical.

I was supposed to meet the old friend from yesterday's post today, and I lied about being busy so I wouldn't have to go and I stayed in bed all day long. My teeth hurt, I've been lying down for so long.

What is wrong with me? I don't want to get up, I don't want to go outside or see anybody. I DON'T want to talk on the phone.

I was supposed to have a medical assessment tomorrow morning at 10.10am and I was getting really scared about going. I really wanted to ask someone to go with me, but then I felt so fraudulent because I have been going out, on my own, for a while now. They, however, called me today and cancelled the appointment because they received "further information" from my doctor, so I don't have to go. Then I wanted to know what the doctor had said. What is being said behind my back?

The dishes have piled up all over the kitchen again, and I can't get into the zone required to fix that. I need to change my bed sheets and pick up around here and I can't be bothered. The intention is there, but the motivation, that lies a thousand miles down, under my mattress.

I'm stuck, but I don't want anyone to know. I don't want to tell anyone, I just want to laugh it off. I want to giggle like a naughty 6 year old and pretend that today has just been a 'naughty' lie in, a one off. But it isn't.

My head was wound so tightly last night that I stayed awake in bed from 11pm to 3am, twirling. I had taken a sleeping tablet too, and that didn't take over like it used to. I have taken a sleeping tablet, every night for weeks, and have had more than my fair share of Vallium; but I still feel like I'm faking it. Stepping outside the door seems like an almighty stretch and I still feel like I'm faking it. I sleep for maybe 15/16 hours a day and I still feel like I'm faking it. Today the letterbox kept rattling because the hurricane, that was swirling itself into a frenzy outside my door, kept poking it - every time I jumped out of my skin. What if someone was out there and wanted me to open up? What if someone was out there and I would open the door and have to speak to them, or worse still they would see I was still in my pyjamas? They would think nothing other than I was a lazy girl that sleeps all day.


Someone, please help me, without my having to ask you...

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Day 101.1

I am wearing my first nicotine patch and have just eaten my weight in marshmallows. I think I may also have the first signs of kidney failure.

This is going very well.

Day 101

Two things: 1) rather aptly, "Room 101" and things that should go into it and 2) a song with the following words in it: "Here I am stuck in the middle with you..."

An old friend hurt me yesterday. Well, not yesterday exactly, as this has been an ongoing thing since I relocated north of the border, but the wrongdoing was confirmed, last night, by phone, thus making last night and today hell on legs.

I got an email from her, a long chatty email with an apology at the end: "Anyway, I just wanted to say sorry for being crap and not much use to you at the moment..."

That was yesterday evening, and after she got my reply we talked on the phone. A lot of difficult things were said, primarily that she had felt unable to deal with what was happening to me and had purposefully distanced herself from me to protect herself.

I hit a major low after talking to her. I cried while I was talking to her. I never cry in front of people, if it can be helped, in fact, I go out of my way not to. Above all I had no idea how affected I was by her behaviour.

In the hours that have passed since our conversation, I have realised that there is a very big difference between someone ‘depending’ on you and someone who just needs your support. I have never said to anyone that I depend on them - apart from my mother who said I was allowed to depend on her – I double checked. I thought true friendship was going to someone in their hour of need, no questions asked, just like I did for her. I think she still wants us to be friends, but I don't trust her now, I also feel suspicious. Above all I feel so, so hurt and humiliated. I feel freakish and rejected, but part of me is also unsurprised. Who would want to be around me, like this? Even I don’t want that.

People used to say we were so close we were like sisters, and I know that depression, self-harming and suicide are all terrible things for people who love you to bear, but when I needed her, when I really needed her, she walked away. So, do I blame her or accept whatever she can offer?


Today I didn't want to get out of bed. I had an appointment with my NHS counsellor this morning so I had to get up, which, after a sleepless night was not easy. And then my appointment was cancelled so I panicked, a lot, took a Diazepam and went back to bed.

I later hauled myself out of bed and MADE myself go into town for fear I would never go out again.

I made it.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Day 100

"I can't".

"I can't".

"I can't".

"I can't".

"I can't".

"I can't".

"I can't".

Monday, November 27, 2006

Day 99

I had a horrible day yesterday. I slept for over 12 hours waking up way after noon. Was up for about 2 hours watching Gilmore Girls obsessively, then went back to bed for about 4 hours until 8pm. I mooched and lay, staring at the laptop and TV for a while then watched Brokeback Mountain. At 2am I took another sleeping pill and tried to get to sleep.

By that point I was out of my mind with the inabillity to do anything. I contemplated self harming, and got into a complete headspin that I might 'accidentally', stab myself through the heart with the knitting needles by my bed during the night. I often feel this out of control of my actions and it scares the living daylights out of me. I think I may wander out into the street in the dead of night and become lost forever, forgetting who I am and where I came from.

It is a very real fear, fearing that you might suddenly fall off the world at any given moment. You hold on so tightly to any available faculty that you might think you have left, all day, every day, just incase you become enveloped in an overwhelming fog and become completely and utterly lost, forever.

Today I feel so confused at what I am supposed to do. "Should I get out of my PJ's before I go to the shop?" "Should I wash first?" "What about the dishes, and then there's the bills, and that form I have to check over..."

"Write it down, and work through it methodically..."

Fuck, agh! The noise in my head is LOUD today. Loud and all talking at once.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Day 98

Today is the scary day, that way back in the beginning of this record of my "illness" and hopeful "recovery", that I predicted might be the day that "...I press the wrong thing...and delete the whole bloody thing."

That was on Monday, August 21st 2006 and thus far the blog seems to have remained intact, (oooh don't tempt fate...) as am I - relatively speaking (not really bothered about tempting that fate - or am I?).

The latter is a rather peculiar thought, as I truly wondered, many times, if I would still be here on this date - be it blogging or breathing. But I guess I am. "Snaps for Rozza".

Things that are different from that day to this are:
1) I am on different medication.
2) I have scars, too numerous to mention on both my hands and arms.
3) I have shorter hair. One side longer than the other as I tried to hack off all my hair on a bad day, and (luckily?) stopped half way through the act.
4) I can fit into clothes that have lain in my wardrobe, mocking me, for nigh on a year.

There will be others, I am sure, but as one of my 'rules of blogging' is that I never re-read my entries, I can't be that specific.

Taking stock: days have rolled into weeks, weeks into months, and now, looking back, it seems to be a pitifully short amount of time that I have been recording my daily thoughts/activities/minor accomplishments. Mind you that is a grand total of 2352 hours of breathing (unless you count the breath-loss attributed to anxiety attacks). More snaps please...

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Day 97

So, I distracted myself last night for as long as I could, then I self harmed again, took a Zopiclone and went to sleep.

For days/weeks I don't even think about it (the self harming), then the thought will creep into my head and I can't (seemingly), do anything about it until I finally complete the act. I sometimes think it might be easier just to get it over and done with the minute the thought comes into my head. Why fight it?

The funny thing is that all I think afterwards is "how can I be a bride with arms that look like mine?" I know, an astonishing thought, as there are no weddings remotely on my horizon. But if there were to be a wedding, I certainly wouldn't want to be wearing sleeves. No, no, no, I have something more sleeveless in mind. Sleeveless and full skirted. And cup cakes instead of a wedding cake. I might even have the band picked out, but admitting to that would be like admitting I was completely sad wouldn't it?

Other thoughts on my mind, apart from artificial insemination (that was by no means a flippant remark), is a trip to London town. My gorgeous second family in the south have asked if I can make it down sometime soon, and it has put me into a tail spin, quandry style, mess. I want to go, yes I do, but I am scared. Old Rozza colliding with new Rozza. Old careeer girl Rozza, collides head first, in a slow, car crash fashion, with new "I lie in bed all day and scratch my arms 'till they bleed" Rozza.

I suppose having both the physical and mental distance, with vast quantities of mileage between myself and my 'old life', have made it easier to cope with the loss I feel, the loss of having lost my life.

Over the past few days and dangerous nights, I have been perusing my old haunts on the internet. Primarily looking at the company I used to work for. The good news for them is the fact that they are doing amazingly well. Amazingly well, without me. That makes me feel really, really gutted, and that I, along with every other human on the planet is replaceable. I have no idea of what to do about that. I'm scared that I will go down there and visit the lovely Second Family, and be reminded of everything I don't have anymore. Everything that I chose to walk away from. I felt I had no other option at the time because I was struggling massively with my mind, but it doesn't stop these feelings of regret.

"What if I disappoint them?"

Friday, November 24, 2006

Day 96

Today was a day of 'supposed to's...

I was supposed to get up early and write my To Do List.
I was supposed to write down what went on at my counselling appointment yesterday.
I was supposed to wash my manky hair.
I was supposed to walk down to the DVD shop in daylight.
I was supposed to try to make some sense of a batch of pictures I have taken.
I was supposed to decide what shade of grey I wanted my life to be.
I was supposed to be happy.
I was supposed to smile.
I was supposed to be better. A better person with a better life and a better outlook.

I was supposed not to say, 'supposed to'.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Day 95

Day 95, how weird. Mum left this morning and I am feeling like a sulky ten year old. I have counselling at 4.15 this afternoon and I can't be bothered going. I don't know what I want to talk about. I'm done talking.

Yesterday was a day filled with hideous pain. Yes, hideous. It felt like my stomach was giving birth through my throat, I got Mum to count in between the spasms - 45 seconds apart. So, our fun day together was spent with me (quietly) screaming in agony and her administering medicine every two hours until it went away. Apparently some people have this all the time. That would be beyond hideous.

Anyway, "I would like a break now please", anyone that is listening that has the power to dish out illnesses. Primarily because being 'ill' is horrible, but also because I am also now slightly concerned that I shall read all of this journal at some point, and think I was the biggest hypochondriac known to man.

Moan, moan, moan. "Bring back the self-harming", I say, at least that was interesting...

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Day 94

Two words: acid reflux.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Day 93

Mum has arrived with chicken soup. I love her. I'm convinced she has a bat cape on under her clothes.

I went outside today, with the proper attire on; no more puked on socks for me. I'm sure everybody is breathing a sigh of relief at that one. Plus I had breakfast at breakfast time. Given, it was a teeny, tiny bowl of conrnflakes, but hey at least I'm on to solids.

The mood (my mood) is low, but It's been an OK day so far. I feel very small, on the cusp of emotion at all times and keep getting freaked out by watching Gilmour Girls. I've been watching it for about 3 days now, (back to back episodes) and keep thinking that because they are in America, I have to be in America. Not because I love them, but just because they are so Goddamn cheerful and cheerful people go places, and I want to be a cheerful person that goes places. Then I freak out. They are also ALWAYS eating, and that makes me think I should be eating more. Then I start thinking about weird, American food combinations that I have eaten in the past - pancakes with maple syrup, sour cream, cheese and green pickle - (yes, on the same plate) and then bad things happen in my head - usually culminating in a panic attack.

Medication wise, I'm doing OK on the 50mg of Sertraline, I keep thinking about upping the dosage, because I would like to be a little more numb than I am now, plus I am not enjoying the recent glut of emotions that keep appearing. But, that would be 'hiding' which random advice givers keep telling me " not good", but quite frankly today, I don't care. I want to be numb. Numb and floaty.

I am also very restless and keeping getting up to do things like shaking the ratty, living room rug outside (in freezing, sub zero temperatures I might add), changing the filter in the water filter and generally being twitchy. I think another To Do List is in order. Getting everything out of my head and onto a piece of paper = good thinking. The Bank has also decided to steal my money again. I thought all this bollocks was supposed to have stopped now? I might take my stupid Money Plant back to Ikea and get a refund, It's obviously faulty. Bloody auspicious wealth corners. Pah.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Day 92

This is what happens when you spend all day in bed. I'm not sick anymore, but I can't be bothered moving, and because I'm not sick anymore, and can't be bothered moving, people send me these emails.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Day 91.1

F.Y.I. Did you know that the Lucozade bottle now has this on it?

"Lucozade is not appropriate for replacing the fluid lost during diarrhoea."

See, that's because everybody thought that's exactly what it was for - for years - before it was known as the 'NRG' (energy) drink. Or maybe that's because I had the orange version. Bad. Orange. Tastes like diluting orange, which reminds me of being 14 and hurling my guts up over some nettles after one too many peach schnapps. That was the time before last time that I puked. Maybe it's the original version that replaces electrolytes...?

Day 91

My lips resemble those of an avalanche victim. I am also trying to recover from a mouthful of tuna that I ate around 3pm this afternoon. It was the only thing I wanted to eat. No, I didn't want the dry toast EVERYBODY told me to eat. I wanted tuna. Now my stomach is laughing at me. Mwaa ha ha ha. (That was my stomach.) At least I can pick off my lips and nibble on the skin to sustain me until I can eat again.

I have prepared a luke warm bath, am back to drinking cold, milky, tea with a spoonfull of sugar (seriously) and am fully prepared for Mary Poppins to arrive any minute.

I had to wash all the bedsheets today. I was going to wash them anyway, as one must always wash contaminated bed sheets after a contamination, but as my sheets also met with the afore mentioned milky tea, their journey to the washing machine was quicker than usual. During one of my more recent experiments with the philosophical concept of causality, I placed a half filled cup of cold, milky tea on the matress beside my head, knowing full well that this was a very foolish thing to do, also knowing the inevitably of what would happen if I did leave it there. So, I left it there, ("Your honour, in my defense, I was so weak after vomiting my guts up...") and forgot all about it until watching my 20th episode of Gilmour Girls, back in bed ten minutes later. First thing I noticed was my wet behind. Not a good moment for someone getting over food poisoning. Anyway, moving on...

I have also lost lots of weight which is super. I am never going to eat again. Yes, even though I cannot eat, barely stand or wash, I can step on the scales every five minutes. (Just to make sure that I'm not dreaming.) C'mon I haven't been this skinny since September 2005.

I am also very proud of myself that I have survived this trauma single handedly. (Please note, that I am utterly phobic of vomiting, so much so that I have not done so since 1999. I am also horrible at being ill, both on my own and in company, but for the record, I was completely on my own. No-one to hold my hair out my face while yakking my guts up, (not that I have any - hair), no one to clean the newly spray painted bathroom after my (many) visits. No chicken soup or help getting into clean PJ' nothing. My mum even refused to send the dog down with a bottle of brandy round her neck.)

The highlight of my last few days was probably going to the local Spar yesterday, for a giant bottle of full fat coke, lucozade and the paper with both my nightie and puked on socks, on. Being single/on your own, while being ill, sucks (man) big time, but at least one know's, one can survive when one has to.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Day 90

I have food poisoning.

I have been up, projectile vomiting, all over the bathroom all night.

I have small bits of vomit on my socks and am drinking Lucozade to replace all the electrolytes I have purged. Doctors orders.

Well, this has been fun...

Friday, November 17, 2006

Day 89

I want to throw things again. I feel grumpy, agitated and tight lipped. My counselling went well. Well, fine actually, not 'well' and I don't want to talk about it, thank-you-very-much. (That's the tight lipped part.)

My writings yesterday annoy me now. All that chippy, chirpy cheerleader talk. How deeply irritating. I am also suffering with the physical fallout from all the effort that yesterday's little sojourn took. Which is lovely.

I slept this afternoon for about 4 hours. I blame starting to read "Prozac Nation". My that girl is wordy. And depressed. Reading it is like swimming through treacle with your eyes open. I feel almost duty bound to read it as a fellow depressee, and intrigued because of all the criticism. We'll see how it goes. I'm not sure, I as a depressive, should be reading other depressed ramblings. It makes me depressed.

And now I feel sick. (The weird eating is still around. I don't like food at the moment and don't want to eat. Apart from the cake yesterday.)

Oh bloody hell, I'm bored of listening to myself now. "Shut up!"

Day 88.2

Oooh I almost forgot, this was one of the highlights of my day: lemon meringue pie, with a (almost heart attack enducing) little espresso, in an Emma Bridgewater cup. Oh my. I'm so modern.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Day 88.1

I did it! I had a day out and had fun. I went on a train and didn't die, I laughed and I joked and...I did it.

Yay me.

And I only had one Diazepam.

Day 88

I'm going on a day trip. Oh my. First day out since, oooh, 1986?

And I'm up - it's normal people time to get up, and I'm actually out of bed and about to stuff a bagel in my mouth and drink tea, before running around like a headless chicken to get out of here on time.

And I'm trying not to panic so, "Yay me!" (in a distracting cheerleader like voice.) I think I'm going to be sick...or pass out...

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Day 87

A man started talking to me in the local "Mental Health Services Centre" today. You could have knocked me down with a feather. Nobody, but nobody, says anything to anybody in these places, and yet here he was as bold as brass, making light conversation. It was quite refreshing actually.

So he asked me if I'd come far, and complained about the horrific weather of the day. He asked if there wasn't a health centre closer to me - I said "No."

He asked if I'd been to "the hospital." I asked "which one?” and he said somewhere I didn't know. I told him the one I'd been to and he said, "Oh, I didn't know they had a mental health unit there." I nearly fainted. He said "mental health". How did he know I was there for mental health problems? Did I 'look' like I had mental health problems? He didn't know anything about me after all, not even my name and I certainly hadn't offered up the former nougat of information. I should have realised where we were. (In my defense, I didn't know it was just 'mental' people that came here.)

I took a breath and carried on. "Outpatients", I said. "Oh, so you haven't been sectioned then?" (Holy crap.) We talked about the (illusive) senior psychiatrist and he told me how he felt they all thought "taking a pill would sort everything out." All he wanted was a cuppa and a chat sometime. I bit my tongue (and felt terribly guilty) for not offering my ear, or tea appreciation skills to him.

Anyway this conversation lasted for all of about, oooh, 5 minutes, and then his counsellor came to pick him up. He said "Hello" to her - explained why he was late and then said, "Bye Rosalind" to me. I nearly fell off my seat. How the hell did he know my name? After thinking, "Oh my God he's a spy for my father." Then I realised that he was behind me when I checked in for my appointment and gave my name. Weirder still he pronounced it (my name) exactly the right way. This is usually, and no offence here, hard for us Scots, (including myself) to say correctly at the best of times, never mind translated from my inarticulate mumblings when I entered the centre.

I was so amazed by the whole affair that I wrote it down in my trusty notebook before I could forget it.

Then I had my appointment with the NHS psychologist. She has a very slow voice. It sounds irritating at first, but as you sit there, you sort of get hypnotised by it and all you can think about is what she is saying. It is a very sooooothing voice.

We talked about how I had been, and I talked about how up and down things were. I also explained that today was not a good day (because it wasn't). She mentioned a lot of things of note, but a few things that stuck out: 1) That she thought we were in for the long haul with my counselling and that she would be seeing me for a while yet. 2) That she was glad I had told her about my increase in 'checking things' before leaving the house and going to sleep at night. (I was late leaving the house today because I got 'stuck' checking things were off.) 3) That she thought the 'ex' wasn't very nice to me. 4) That she agreed with my not increasing the Lustral just yet. She also mooted her concerns about my current penchant for turning night into day (crazy sleep patterns) but told me not to concern myself with "changing that too much just yet". Soothe, soothe.

I said to her that everyone (my "team") had been saying to me that my 'recovery' would come through a combination of medication and counselling, so I asked what I had to do to keep up my part of this equation? She didn't answer that. Then I asked her if my depression was something I would have to cope with for the rest of my life. She said "Let's talk about that next time."

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Day 86

Shhhhh, little voices telling me to be insane...

Them: "Turn off the taps."
Them: "Check the gas, is it off?"
Me: "Yes."
Them: "No, it's still on, get up and check it again."
Me: "Really?"
Them: "The doors aren't closed - leaving yourself w-i-d-e open aren't you?"

Flick on/off/on/off the little lights. Check, check, check.

Them: "Is the oven still on?"
Them: "Are the candles out?"
Them: "Did you lock the door?"

Me: "Are you sure?"

Monday, November 13, 2006

Day 85.2

I took some good old Diazepam about an hour and a bit ago and am now exhausted and feeling rather sick. During that time I cleaned and sorted methodically for about 30mins and then spent another half an hour of trying not to demolish the flat. I had the most suden, violent urge to trash everything, including hurling my laptop through the lounge window. However, after literally sitting on my hands and talking to my mother on the phone, things are a little more subdued.

How do you scream in words?

Day 85.1

Out of nowhere tonight - PANIC. Funny that I can now differentiate between panic that will go away and when I need to take a pill.

I need to take a pill.

Day 85

I'm housebound, waiting for a phone interview for the latest claim. I have been 'warned' it could take up to 45 minutes. What is this a fucking interrogation? Oh yes, almost forgot, I am a 'suspect claimant' until proven otherwise, silly me.

Just like...

Hilarious - the phone just rang and I nearly jumped out of my skin - but it was just Mum checking in. I am always so on edge with these (interview) things and appointments in general make me slightly hysterical - depending on what sort of appointment they are. Shrink appointments, for example do not make me hysterical. Neither do CPN or NHS counsellor apointments. They usually make me want to cry. I also have to concentrate a lot, when people ask me 'serious' questions under the pressure of being a 'suspect claimant until proved otherwise'. For example: it took me about three hours this morning to remember if I'd been a student in the last 4 years. I graduated in 2002 - I think, so does that mean I have or have not studied in the last 4 years? I'll tell them that anyway and they can work it out.

So, yes, ...just like the gas board they can only say the appointment will be between 12 and 5.30pm - not really an appointment then is it? Knowing my luck they will phone at 5.30.

Anyway, I have "the apron of productivity" on - it always makes me do things when I have it on. So, three bowls of dishes in dishwater, and one load of laundry later...still waiting. At least the house will look presentable again. I might have to attack the grout in the bathroom if this carries on.

Last night I discovered that a poster I purchased, of a girl from an art show I liked, looks like the ex, ex's girlfriend. It keeps making me laugh, when it doesn't freak me out. I didn't notice the likeness until I shoved it in a frame. She has the same far-apart-eye, droopy face thing happening. I might have to draw a moustache and glasses on it, and some peggy teeth, just to prove that I am superior.

"Hush now." Says the warning voice of...oh I don't know who - just someone in my head.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Day 84.1

Just sitting here waiting for the Zopiclone to kick in. It's not been a great day. A-g-a-i-n. I'm getting a bit bored of this routine now. I'm tired. My head is tired. Maybe my soul too.

Old ghosts came a visiting yesterday. I felt just like Scrooge, with ex's past coming to show me the errors of my ways in the dark of night. At least there were no rattling chains - small mercies. Thoughts of 'him' have stayed with me all day today and I can't shake them off. He was the last one, the one who was there when I was first diagnosed. And then, I lost him.

Anyway, I have moments like these from time to time, like all of us do, when I ponder what could have been. I guess this is just one of those times and you just have to ride it out...until the feelings go away again. Sometimes it feels like being on a perpetual roundabout that some big bully just keeps swinging round and around and you can't get off. Round and around until you're so dizzy, you throw up.

So I sit here fag in hand, typing away, waiting for the sleeping tablets to kick in so I can sleep. C'est la bloody vie

I ventured into other blogs about depression today and freaked myself out completely. Talk of ECT and all other dark things lead me to a path I didn't want to go down. So, I went into town and picked up some presents for birthday's I've missed. Trying desperately to concentrate.

"Don't think about anything too much", I say. Hark at me - "practice what you preach", young Rozza...

Day 84

Today the shop shall mainly be closed.

Living with ghosts today.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Day 83

Agh, it's stunningly cold outside and the flat is freezing. My eyes look like pee holes in the snow from all that weeping last night and I feel totally battered.

Had a very long lie in this morning, thanks to a late night and a sleeping tablet, and missed the Remembrance Day minute's silence, which I was really annoyed about. Technically, I would have been silent at eleven - because I was sleeping - but that's just a crap excuse.

Both my grandfathers fought in the war and my Granddad was a P.O.W in Japan, so yes, annoyed with myself. I'll do it again tomorrow and light a candle - even though it's not technically the same thing. Honestly with all the crap that goes on in the world and the atrocities that my own family faced, you'd think I would be able to light a bloody candle on the right day, at the right time and take a moment. I am a very bad person.

Apart from that, I had a quick start to the day with my lovely friend coming to get me to take me to Ikea - our lovely Scandinavian utopia. I shot out of bed and straight onto the misery of the city busses. Jesus, that's enough to tip you over the edge. The trips triumph being a Christmas tree. (Yes, I know it's only November.) It's orange and is actually more like a twig, but I like it. It shall sit somewhere in the flat, looking twiggy and orange until it is a suitable date to hang fancy things on it and transform it into a Christmas tree.

Now, dinner and copious amounts of NCIS on TV. Bring it on.

Can't decide on a sticker colour - I feel too weird.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Day 82.1

A horrible day.

I have felt so awful all day, and still do sitting here tonight - and a bit weepy at the moment. Counselling today was hard. I was battling a big panic attack all morning but managed through it without resorting to Diazepam. Small triumphs. I was trying so desperately not to be scared of feeling something. When I start feeling horribe emotions my now, normal reaction, is to swallow a pill.

We talked a lot about my childhood during today's session and I found all of it difficult. By the end of our time, I mainly felt guilty because I thought I was angry at Mum for some of the decisions she made when my dad left us. I feel as if I have no right to challenge any decision my mum makes, or has made as she had to deal with so much shit when my dad left.

Sitting here tonight however, I feel desperately sad and tearful. I feel that when I lost my dad, all those years ago, I lost my mum too. When my dad was around, my mum was at home all the time - we affectionately call her the 'Blue Peter' mum because she used to play with us all day every day, just making and do-ing. She was always, always there and I followed her around like a little shadow, if she was ironing, so was I, with my little, toy iron and ironing board.

When Dad left, she had to be Mum and Dad and provider. She also had a full time job looking after my grandfather who was really sick. She went back to school to get qualifications to get a better job, and we lost her. We lost her to her books and her struggles and a lot of things we never, never knew she was dealing with. I always thought I was angry about that, about losing her, but I'm not, I'm just heartbroken. I lost my mum. I am so sad that this happened to us because 'he' changed his mind.

That may sound selfish and self absorbed in our contemporary world, but actually, I don't care. It's how I feel and part of the important puzzle that has brought me to this point. I am slowly learning there is no point in lying to yourself about how you feel about things. No-matter how stupid those feelings might seem to you or others around you.

Feeling slightly numb, dazed and confused I stumbled from counselling to the supermarket, to grab a coffe with my gorgeous friend (she is always there when I need her). To the bank, dropping off sick lines and then hopped on the train, dodged the flash floods and went to the Job Centre to drop in yet another sick line and start a claim for Income Support. Apparently you only need to qualify for about 50p to get full Housing Benefit - which is what we are aiming for. Dear God, it's all too much!

Black, black, black as the night my day was today. But I get a fucking huge, green, star shaped sticker for effort. Jesus.

And now I need to go and drink copious amounts of water because I have a weeping headache.

Day 82

I just picked the scab off my arm. Still a deeply satisfying act.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Day 81.1

Blah, blah, blah. So...I eventually went outside today. Well, late this afternoon actually. I had made prior arrangements to go to a book launch and an opening, and I had to drop off the dull DVD's I got out the other day in a fit of boredom, before I got fined. All tasks were rather er, dull - apart from the coffee I had with my friend before we set out on our mission(s). The launch was rather entertaining, mainly because the 'guest speaker' referred to one of the contributors as a "feisty little minx". The opening on the other hand, was pretty horrific; mainly due to the content.

After watching a very dull film we had drinks and did the social 'chit chat'. I was looking around the gallery space and saw an older man sitting at a table. He looked so out of place and somehow managed to remind me of my father. An unwelcome and surprising wave of sympathy ensued.

I wondered if my father would ever come to an opening of mine? He had a stroke over a year ago and his speech has been badly affected so he now talks in an almost childlike fashion. I wondered that if I were to invite him to this imaginary opening of mine, he might do his best to show up. That single thought made my heart lurch, that old heart that I thought I didn't have the day before yesterday. I don't like talking or thinking about my father because I find it 'difficult'. Very 'difficult' indeed.

I caught the train home after that.

Now I sit in my freezing cold flat, surrounded by paper work, trying to make sense of bills and forms. Bills and forms, the things I spend my life avoiding. I tried to sort out the gas and leccy bill today - they had estimated my bill to the point that I nearly fainted when I opened the envelopes, so I called to give them readings. Tonight I scanned the latest sick line for my Incapacity Benefit and loan cover and wrote important letters. All things I have to sort out tomorrow. Bleugh.

I have counselling tomorrow. I am going to try my best not to waffle for 3/4 of an hour before I dare to tackle the hard stuff, 15 mins before my session ends. Maybe I should just go in there and say, "I want to talk about my Dad today"? Maybe I will, or maybe I'm not that brave...

At least my bedroom has stopped smelling like cabbages. I thought something might have died under a floorboard last night.

Day 81

I am going to get bed sores.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Day 80.1

This came in the post the other day. I thought it rather apt at the time. I didn't open the envelope as there is probably a small animal or child in there needing sponsorship and I prefer to think it was aimed directly at me.

Funnily enough I thought I had a lonely heart at one point, but in fact I think I may have no heart at all. I feel nothing when people say they love me. Not even a twinge - they might as well be telling me the square route of 678. The subject of 'love' came up at my counselling appointment a couple of weeks ago. My counsellor asked me if I felt loved. I said "no". Then felt terribly guilty. And have done for the last two weeks.

How can I possibly say that when my family obviously loves me a great deal - how else would they put up with the crap that they do from me? The point is, I can't feel it. People say "I love you" and there is nothing there. No tug at my heart strings, no flip of my stomach. Looking back, I can't remember when anyone last said "I love you" and I felt something, or indeed when I said it to them. I simply cannot access it, and that scares me a great deal. Does that make me a horrible, horrible person? I think it does.

I think of times when Valentine's Day came around (yes, every year), and I would be so filled with the importance of that day. It was so important to me to declare my love on that day, just like everyone else. I found it abhorrent when people would say "I think it's bullshit", or "my girlfriend/boyfriend knows I love her/him all year round, why do I have to tell her/him on a day defined by Hallmark?". Bravery. Maybe that's what I now think. It's an act of bravery to step away from all this conformity and say it only when you want to, not when others think you should say it.

I think, lately, I have said it less. Primarily because there are less people to say it to. No 'special someone'. It has been an eye opener to say the least. When that envelope came through the door I thought, "Oh! Another lonely soul who has no-one to love is inside that envelope. Someone just like me (desperate)." But now I don't think that's right at all. I am OK on my own with no 'someone special' because I don't want one. It's too complicated and wearing and you only get your heart broken in the end - if you can feel it.

I have spent the last 48 hours surrounded by babies. My oldest friend and my wayward mate have both had babies recently and I visited them both, yesterday and the day before that. I spent three hours yesterday holding a mighty wee thing on my lap. I was always so scared of them before, never wanting to hold them or go near them. Now, they don't scare me. I have spent the last age saying I don't want to have kids, mainly because I think I would be such a crap mother. You can hardly parent from the underside of a duvet? So, maybe I do, maybe I don't. Maybe they don't let heavily medicated people like me have kids?

When I think of the future, which is rare these days, I can only imagine myself having kids alone. No happy families there, in that future of mine. Just a mum and her girls. Just like when I grew up...

A few things have happened over the last few days which have sent me into a tail spin. 1) I got my period. 2) I was awarded Disability Living Allowance. 3) I spent the last 3 evenings drawing.

The first made me cranky, spotty and tired; weepy at times and frustrated with everything. And so did the second and third point.

I feel guilty about the DLA - I don't know why. I feel like I'm drawing attention to myself and that I shouldn't have it, that there should be different rules from me, beacuse I am different. But, it's all above board and yes, I am entitled to it. It is the special DLA for people suffering from mental illness - and there's the rub, the old playmate of doom - do I actually have a mental illness? Then there's the point my mother made - maybe they'll take away my Incapacity Benefit because I now have the DLA. Something else to worry myself sick about...

I was pondering 'where I'm at' this afternoon and I'm scared. I'm scared that I have come so very far away from normality that I will never be able to get back there. What if I forget how to work, or to be part of society? I'm hardly joining in am I, hiding here under my duvet?

The third point - the drawing. Oh dear God it pains me so. I have such preconceptions about what my drawings 'should' look like and then hate what actually, naturally, comes out of me. I have started a project, which is all very self absorbed and self obsessive, but my life and my head are all I seem to have at the moment, so I'm working with the tools God gave me.

I have been drawing rabbits for 3 days and then I found one on my hand.

Day 80

I am going to die sad and alone. I may well be founds days later, with my hamster eating my face, because he (starvingly) gnawed his way out of his cage and had nothing to eat but my puffy eyelids.

I'm in bed, have been all day, and I'm going to stay here until something nice happens.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Day 79

OK, piss off then.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Day 78

Bugger off.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Day 77

Today I have been mainly pondering my [lack of] 'artistic' creativity. Meanwhile, fireworks have been popping all around me, and I can't even be bothered to twitch my net curtains to look at them out of the window.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Day 76.1

The day began slowly with me sleeping in again; hardly surprising really, considering I took a sleeping tablet after 2am. My body clock is all off kilter, with late nights and no mornings to speak of - must try and address that this week. I was a bit weary and tearful early on, although no tears actually materialised. I did, however, spend a fair amount of time agonising over the state of my latest 'creations'.

I am utterly despairing of the state of my arms and hands. I cannot believe I have done this to myself. I look awful. I sometimes feel guilty, guilty that other people have scars that they have had no cause in, and I chose to do this to myself. I however remain to profess that I had no control over myself at the time. Which is true to a point, as it always feels like someone else did it...

Later, I cleaned up after last nights 'soiree', and at about 4pm I headed into town to hang out with my friend. Even though no part of me wanted to go out, I knew if I stayed in things would have become a lot worse. Distraction, distraction, distraction.

So, I saw my best friend, we chatted and she made me some lovely food, then we went to an opening in town. It's been ages since I've been out amongst that many people for a long, long time; but I did OK - I'd had a wicked caffeine fix before we left her house. Caffeine always makes me chatty - maybe slightly manic, but at least not sullen and monosyllabic.

And now I find myself watching naked people dance across my TV set in possibly the worst film ever made. Oh the joys...

Day 76

The end of a hectic week and the end of the longest day known to man.

The dinner party went ahead as planned and 1 Diazepamela later, I cooked, covered in plasters - it was all good. I hope it was OK for everyone. I hope I was OK. The house also looks like a palace. It's only taken 3 days, but I've got it back under control again. I just hope I can keep it like this, for a while anyway.

I had a tough session with the Amazing Friday Counsellor today - well, yesterday now, and before that the doctors. We talked about increasing my dose of the Lustral considering the events of last night. I'm unsure about that at the moment because I was doing ok until last night. So, I have enough tablets to double it up if I feel the need and I have to monitor how I go over the next week or so and then decide. Some kind of control at least.

I also got another sickline. 13 weeks is a long time. Saying that, I can't believe I'm already on Day 76 documenting my recovery, it feels like only yesterday I was on day 30 or so - where did those 40 plus days go? Counting up the days like this seems very surreal.

I had to take the plasters off tonight, as soon as my guests left, because the wounds just keep on weeping unless you let them dry out in the air. I am presuming a night of peeling my arm/hand off the sheets is looming. Goddamit they (the sheets) are fresh on too.

My eyes feel like they have sand in them and look like piss holes in the snow - a good look I believe.

Goodnight Dear Diary.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Day 75.4

I woke up this morning feeling so ashamed. So ashamed and disappointed in myself. Plus my hand and arm now kill.

I spent the last few moments awake last night thinking: "How would anyone want me to cook them food with hands that look like this?" And wondering where I could get latex gloves from, so I could cover my hands while I was preparing the meal tonight.

It's all a blur, the events of last night. Feels like I went on a bender and now I have that horrible, guilty, sinking feeling that I did something bad.

Mum just called to make sure I was up, as I've been sleeping through my alarm all week and I have the doctors this morning and then counselling. Not because of last night, just scheduled appointments.

All I want to do is go back to bed and pull the duvet over my head.

Day 75.3

Oh fuck, What have I done?

Day 75.2

Or maybe I'll do it again. pathetic.

Day 75.1

I just scratched my hand again.

The skin bunches up under the nail, eventually, when you scratch perpetually on one point for long enough. Then you feel the skin underneath go slippery. But you can't stop until you're done. That's the penitence.

I'm done now and the nipping has started. Wash it, clean it and put on a plaster.

Maybe now I'll sleep?

Day 75

Well, that kip didn't last long. Not that I slept. My mind was going around and around, being chased by big demons and little demons.

So I got up and made some soup for tomorrow night. Mushroom it is - and it's simmering away on the stove as I type. funny how you remember to cook, when you don't think about it. Or maybe i didn't - hilarious - I shall find out tomorrow.

I've had the second Diazepamela of the day and am feeling a little drunk at the moment. Drunk and maudlin. I don't deserve any of this. Not the illness that is festering away in my brain - yes, because i deserve that. What I don't deserve is all the goodness in my life. Where's my penitence, where's my suffering? Is this it? Is this all I get for being a crap human being? Well, bring it on I say.

I made some toast, because I was hungry. Hungry, hungry, hungry. I always get hungy at night these days. Not during the day so much, just at night when I should be sleeping. Toast and strawberry jam I had. It's the best combination.

Do you know I lost all my email last week? I lost emails from my deaest friends that said nice things and I am gutted. Absolutely gutted. I can never get them back. And why are mushrooms so dark when you cook them? Most unappetising.

The people downstairs are at it again. Thud. Maybe that was her falling over because she is so drunk. Drunk and shoutey. I can just picture the pair of them swaying around down there, drinks in their hands, shouting incoherent sentences at each other. Or maybe to nobody in particular. Funny thing is I've never seen them. I've seen the lady with the cats that wee in the stairwell, and the handsome man upstairs. Well, I think he was handsome - I can't remember now.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Day 74.1

"Early to bed, early to rise; makes a girl healthy, wealthy and wise."

I live in hope...

Day 74

I’m sitting here in the dark, with only the glow from my computer screen for company. It’s only eight minutes past five in the evening and it’s already, nearly dark.

I wished for this time of year to come around again, so I could hide in the depths of the darkness that lasts a days length, but now it is here, I wonder if I’ve bitten off more than I can chew?

‘Spring forward, Fall back’, that’s how I remember to turn back and forward the hands of time to give us both winter and summertime. It seems an eerily strange act to turn back the hands of time to allow for more darkness. Stranger still for someone that is looking for light, not the bright light at the end of the tunnel, but for some sort of illumination of life, to engage in this act of voluntarily plunging oneself into darkness. I guess I will just have to keep the old campfire burning and watch my electricity bill rocket, in order to find any sort of lumination this season.

I spent my afternoon wandering the isles of a supermarket, pushing a trolley that I had ‘rented’ for a pound. It was all so shiny and bright and full of promise, but such a sad, considered and targeted space for anyone to invest in a life. Immersed in consumerism, I watched people shop to sustain life, without really seeing them, or them me.

I found it hard to concentrate on the task in hand, stocking up on food that I couldn’t imagine myself eating: cheese, mushrooms, milk and onions. I couldn’t remember how to combine them when I was picking them out. I have been so immersed inside my own thoughts and with my demons that I have forgotten how to combine simple items to create food to sustain my life. I have no interest in it. Maybe that’s it; maybe my lack of interest in sustaining my life is as simple as forgetting how to combine produce to make a meal?

Off I go to more clocks back. A little late I know, but as I said, I’m hesitant of going backwards. I’d rather stand still.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Day 73

To move or not to move? That be the question, but what is the answer? The landlord has just sent me a text asking about extending the lease.

I suppose being lease-less for the last 2 months has been quite nice because I've felt that I can go whenever I want. I've been dallying with the thought of moving for the last month, but sitting here, amid a crisis tidy up, I think - this is my home. Yes, it sucks that my best mate is living in the other corner of the city, but then I have another friend in the opposite direction. In fact when I think of it, my 4 good girlfriends are dotted at the 4 corners of this city and we're probably all the same distance apart.

My main worry is that I moved to this area to be close to a mate for emotional support and she hasn't been here. I decided then that it wasn't smart to move somewhere for someone else, and if I move again to be geographically closer to someone else - am I then not doing exactly the same thing? Plus you cannot put all that pressure on someone else to be there for you when you need them. It might not be convenient.

The thought of packing up again now and moving anywhere makes me twirly. "Just check the lease, Rozza, it probably says you give a months notice and you're out anyway, so what's the fuss?". "Ah yes, good point caller".

"She's doing great" is all relative. Relative to the horrors that have gone before, yes I am. Relative to normal functionality, no I'm not.

Bloody leases. Contracts. Decisions.

I scared myself silly last night thinking about dead people. Then I started thinking about people coming into my house to 'get me'. I read 'till the wee small hours with one eye on the bedroom door, fully expecting to see a hairy hand reaching round it. Then I took a pill.