Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thursday

Today, I got dumped by Thursday. Unceremoniously and unprofessionally dumped.

Maybe duped would be a better word, as last week there was, "no problem with my referral" and she was priming me for first meetings with my next counsellor. Yet, today, 'they' had decided that I was ready to, "Go-it-alone". I was floored. I have known my time with Thursday was up, due to her moving to another post, for four weeks but had been assured that counselling would not cease at The Biscuit Centre. Suddenly, having been given three or four options to choose from, I now had none and when I asked what I did now - I was told to: "... talk to my friends". I was also warned not to seek counsel from the rest of my 'team', with regard to getting further help as I: "Would be met with hefty resistance". "... For at least six months".

The bombshell, dropped in the last portion of my last session with a woman I have spent the best part of a year working with, was initially couched in a "nipple confusion" theory. Then it became about me being ready to, "go it alone" then I seemed to be part of a caseload that was being dropped. She held up her hands and blamed herself and smiled at the thought that I would be, "angry at her now", not at the rest of the world as I had just told her I had been feeling all week. I told her I wasn't surprised initially. She looked shocked - I thought I meant that I had suspected someone might suggest it, but actually the lack of surprise I was feeling, was exactly the same as I felt during any rejection.

Not surprised. "Not surprised you're letting me down now", and utter bewilderment in trying to understand how this woman could dupe me into trusting her, telling me she had my back the whole time and then fob me off with - "You should feel great, you've just reached freedom from your therapy". "What an achievement"

I began crying hysterically as the penny dropped further. Big, sobbing, I-actually-can't-breathe, frog-eyed crying, so Thursday stood up and showed me the door. I tried to thank her for all her help thus far and I think I wished her well, through hiccuping, gulping breaths. She looked at me and said: "Good luck". I walked from her room, through reception, past receptionists and patients, still crying hysterically. Nobody said a word.

She had handed me an envelope before I left, detailing the primary points of our year together. I opened it on the long walk home, read the last sentence, which said something about change and put the letter back in the envelope. I'll wait for that punch in the face for another day I think.

In one fell swoop Thursday has just undone a year of work. I think it took her under thirty minutes.

I am still reeling. But not surprised.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Note:

Everything needs to be very quiet and everyone just needs, not to say, anything.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Pestles

People fall off pedestals very quickly when they are yelling at you down the telephone telling you, you are: "... Wrong, wrong wrong!".

A complicated game of Chinese Whispers between the Bride To Be (BTB), Mother of BTB and me, ended up with yours truly, (detox-piggy-in-the-middle) being completely, "wrong" and both of them, lying their heads off. "I can't talk about this," I said. "I think I'm going mental as it is, without you two telling me I've said things I haven't. Bloody hell".

They also seem to forget that when you are itching all over, like you're crawling with ants - being yelled at - isn't that helpful. (Calamine Lotion on the other hand...) Tsst, tsst, tsst!

So I hung up. "Well this [conversation] is obviously not working. I'll speak to you in the morning." I said. Blimey.

Apparently I've had enough Rehab/Detox Sympathy now. Although, I can (it seems), end a conversation that is going nowhere... How quickly a gay afternoon spent baking, can be forgotten. I'd only called to ask them if I had shingles.

Think - Less 'Bun' More Muffin...

I apparently now bake in the afternoon. Yeah - OK, just this one time, and the cakes were from a Fifi and the Flowertots Mini Muffin Mix box, but regardless - there are cakes, merrily cooking in my oven.

I am having a play-date with myself today: Three new pieces of work, several thousand photographs, the bins are out and emails sent. I have actually had breakfast and lunch today and looks like Fifi and the 'tots shall be consumed as afternoon tea. Some of them at least.

I also apparently go to Weaning Groups, (yesterday). Anyone would think I was a new Mum...

Who is this person?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

I Am Racing For My Mum

I've lost a lot to my Depression. Just how much, well that - that is too, too... um, yep, anyway. Too much to think about right now. Through the tsst - tssssst - TSSSSSST, in my forehead, I'm fuming. Tear-stained and fuming.

Tonight, through the tsst - tssssst - TSSSSSST, in my forehead, I watched a television programme, in support/recognition of all those who are, have and will be touched by Breast Cancer. The women, the families, the friends; the people that fight for the cure, the people that raise money to find a cure for this killer and all I did was cry. I have run the Races for Life, I have worn my pink ribbons and I have watched as my closest friends have lost and buried loved ones. I watched the female singers perform their fighting songs and I thought: "Yes, these people, these fighters and survivors and lost loves, they deserve all the recognition we can muster. They deserve more than all that - but..." and this was a huge and guilt filled, angry 'but' - "What about us? The Depressed" And that is when I became angry. Very, very angry.

I was fluidly angry. Spontaneously angry. I will never be on a catwalk, showing people that I survived a mental illness. My mother will never be interviewed on television to say that I kept her going when she thought she was losing me - because I didn't. When I faced death I was alone. When I faced/face(?) death, she waits/waited to see if I would succumb. My Mum had to sit in her house, one-hundred-and-seventy-four miles away from me, waiting by the phone in case it rang, or if I would answer when she rang me. She had to listen when I called her in the night, to tell her I had sliced open my arms with scissors, knowing it would take her three-and-a-half-hours to get to me. She knew I would let no-one else in. She knew I wouldn't/won't answer my door or my telephone unless she actions our secret 'signal'.

My Mum is sixty-years-old; she dropped everything and came to hold me and my head throughout my (continuing) medication fallout. She sat by my bed - all week, holding a flannel to my face, getting my bucket, making me anything I dreamt that I might eat. Holding my hand when I said I didn't want to go on - that I had nothing to look forward to or live for, wiping the tears from my face. She told me she loved me constantly, so that in one of those many sayings - I might hear her.

So, what do we do - what do I do? Where's my soap-box, where's my Speaker's Corner - or is this it? When I started writing this blog I had the, possibly egotistical, maybe just fanciful, thought that someone, somewhere out there, might read something I had written and think that they were not alone. That they might read about me and may find some semblance of comfort(?) in knowing that it wasn't "just them", like I thought when I couldn't find anything on "Adult Self Harm" when I googled it through medicated, lonely, haze - and still sometimes do.

I thought I was outing myself as a voice, that I was standing up somehow and being counted - anonymously. Ha ha! My contradiction. I still hide, two years on. Initially when I was sick - I would have told whomever was sat beside me on the bus about my illness. Nowadays through the ill-treatment and absolute rejection of "ME" because of my illness, I have become a much softer, quieter and more edited voice; the one thing I thought I would never fall for - self censorship.

I have never addressed or acknowledged the 'reader' in my blog as I didn't want to get into a debate or have to defend my position, thinking or writings. I just wanted to write. But I did need it to be in the public realm. I certainly don't want to be an advert of 'What To Do In Case Of Depression', or pretend that I am a master on the subject and have any of the answers because I, quite simply, don't. I needed my 'story' to be out there because I felt I had kept my mouth shut for so goddamn long. I wanted to shout from the rooftops about the injustice I was feeling. It was also a relatively easy way to let my mates know how things were, without them having to ask - or me say. I was also, quite publicly, giving the finger to my father who read and photocopied my teenage diary, suffocating my ability to write down anything I was feeling with any degree of trust, ownership or privacy.

However, people I know; people I meet now, read my blog. Potential squeezes have read it and do you know what? They have ALL RUN. They all ran from the crazy internet chick - even if I was ten times saner than them. "Can I blame them? In a way no - in many ways, hell yeah!" Especially when they said that all their friends were black. But my anonymity has proved to be nothing but something for me to partially hide behind in my fear of telling my truth. The last fella - he told me that I should stop writing, that I should think of my family. What he didn't understand, alongside oh-so-many-things, was that this blog is not a personal, dirty-laundry line to name and shame the beasts that were. This is a record of how a sad, tired, tuned off and out, battered head thinks about laundry and how the laundry got messy in the first place. It is also my record. It is also my achievement as it is, absolutely, the longest project I have ever committed to.

I hate many of the things that have done to me by my parents and their resultant affects, but I don't hate my parents now, or wish them harm. Well, I hate one of them, but... It's just how it is. You go to therapy - you bring stuff up, you get angry, you are hurt and battered all over again. But it does not mean that I don't love my mother, or my sister or stepfather. It does not mean that the friends that take the piss and ignore me or the ones that went away when they had their own shit to deal with, are going to get Blog-twatted because of my perceptions of their behaviour. This isn't about them or who they are - this is about me and how I relate to other people in direct reference to my Depression. It is also something that makes me I feel like I am contributing, somehow to something outside these four walls.

Thursday likes talking about my Mother. I hate talking about my mother. It makes me feel guilty and uncomfortable. When I came to a point in therapy that I realised I had issues with some of my Mother's choices regarding my upbringing - I spoke to my Mum about them. I don't know how to make all that old stuff right - but for me the point was allowing myself to be angry for then, to tell her about my troubles, but not for it to end or change the relationship I have with her now. Jesus, if it hadn't been for her, there were times when I would be sitting here dead, even as recently as last week. Similarly as the point of "getting well", is not to pretend that things didn't happen - to forget them and move on, pretending that they don't exist, but to look at them differently; to see them from a more mature (remember, some of this stuff happened over twenty years ago), perspective and to integrate new thinking patterns into who I am today and who all this shit has shaped me into becoming.

Some shit - yeah that stuff will stay there forever probably, but those people are no-longer in my life. The true folks and fellows are still here, still checking in and still holding my hand, when I let them. The others - "Oh you soooo know who you are. Don't make me name names..."

So, yes - what to do - what to do... You want my surname? Google me and kiss 'n' tell? I doubt it. But I do have a face and if I can piss and moan about never being really seen? That can change too. Can't it?

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Hello, My Name Is...



"You're very brave"
"Well done for braving it, I'm very proud"
"Be fierce"

All of which I have heard over the past days. It didn't register then, when my girls - they all told me so - but now, you know what? I am bee-arrh-ay-V-eee. "Hear that Miscommunication? I AM BRAVE!"

Unfortunately I didn't realise that I would have to be, forcibly be, (brave) when I made the decision to come off both my Venlafaxine and Diazepam on Tuesday 11 November. I opened my mouth in my psychiatrists' office, and suddenly my (then, seemingly), flippety-whippet decision was made and now I am here - almost.

Eleven days in of detox/comedown/withdrawal and I am still alive and still breathing. 'We' are over the hump. There is still the sick bucket beside my bed and the steps, ooh they do shake and falter - but they are still moving forward.

"Did I mention that I thought battling Depression was hard? Well, fuck that. This; this my friend, is the hardest battle I have fought in my entire life." *

"I should probably introduce myself at this point, shouldn't I? Hello, my name is Roz"

And no, that is neither an AA, nor NA response. The introduction? That's because you have never met: "Me", this person sitting here. Even eye haven't met this Roz before - this one, she laughs.

* Ha ha. I, of course, reserve the right...