This is a blog about depression. If you are easily offended or take offence to my very sarcastic humour, please do not read any further. Mental illness is not a joke; it is not something to point fun at and I fully understand that. BUT…when the going gets tough, sarcasm and humour is my defence and so I will be parading it around all over this blog.
If you need help, please get it. Whilst I hope this has a happy ending, I don’t know yet and given I’ve not been able to fix myself, I really don’t want others using this as a ‘How To Be Happy for Beginners v2.0’
This has been a hard post to write and I’m apprehensive about publishing it. I’m a bit scared it makes me sound really ‘mental’. I’m a bit scared I am the only one who thinks like this. I hope I am not alone and that someone reads this and thinks ‘phew, thank goodness, me too!’
I have another 1:1 psychologist appointment this morning but again, I’ve over slept. I go through periods where the insomnia gets really bad and this is one of those times. It makes everything about the world so much worse. Today, it’s also going to mean I need to get a taxi. Bugger.
The session mainly covers my relationship with Father and the fact he wants me to go to Wales with him to ‘help’. I don’t know what he means by help. I don’t know that the two of us will make it of the side of the mountain either. Everything is telling me this is not a good idea. Therapist L asks me to think of the daughter I want to be to him. This is interesting as I focus so intently on how he lets me down, I don’t consider what I bring to the relationship. Bugger, more difficult thinking required. I’d be really grateful if the difficult thinking would kindly go on its summer holiday so I can have some R&R please. Sadly, it doesn’t appear to be going anytime soon and therefore I have homework to do. Yay me. Time to crack open a new notebook though… it’s glittery, it has cats on it… it’s a glittery cat notebook! Such wonders exist and I am solidly cementing my place as the crazy cat lady.
Occupational Health have asked for a call which is making me nervous. I am not sure what they will ask. I know there are no ‘wrong’ answers in this but it feels like a test. They are very keen to ensure I know there is no rush to return to work. They want to know if I am being supported or if there is anything else they can do. I can’t rate my employer highly enough for the way they’ve seamlessly helped me throughout this process. But, and it’s a Person C but, my head is lying to me. It’s telling me they are telling me not to rush back as they don’t want me back. It’s telling me lies that the phone call was to snoop on me. Damn you anxiety, please join ‘difficult thinking’ on a holiday.
I’m meeting Friend XYZ (getting all creative with the labelling now I’ve lost track of the alphabet) for a coffee which was perfectly timed so I wouldn’t be able to ruminate on the work call. This is good planning Person C. If I’d gone home, the rest of the day would have been lost to re-playing that call in my head. We grab a coffee, no poncey London almond milk flat white this time, I have to settle for a regular flat white. We talk about a lot of things but as we start walking, we start to get into a topic of conversation I am nervous to have with some people. It’s about the suicidal thoughts. I decide to be brave and say the truth, in a very messed up way, suicide, or at least the thought of it, was calming. It was a way out that I was prepared to take if needed. If life was a card game, suicide was my ace of spades. It’s the card that you hold onto for as long as you can but when you need to, it’s a game ending card to play. Literally. It’s messed up, I know. No one should think of suicide as the only way out of crappy situations. I need to restore a ‘Normal’ amount of coping strategies. But that’s the problem. The word ‘restore’. Friend XYZ asks when I think the last time I was well. It hurts to admit this but, I am not sure I’ve been a well adult. The anorexia started at 11-years-old until 14-years-old, the bulimia then kindly kicked in along with a laxative and diet pill addiction. At uni, I ballooned up in weight and then came hurtling back down over the course of first year before losing my marbles to depression and binge eating. The bulimia kicked back in during my first graduate job and hung around for a good few years. I’ve not made myself sick for a couple of years now however, the depression has been there, hiding. I am scared I don’t know what being ‘well’ looks like. That’s a scary thing to see in black and white on the computer in front of me. I don’t like admitting it. I’ve felt like a failure from day 1 of my current job. I felt like a failure throughout my last job, in fact, I’ve felt like a failure since I was 11-years-old.
As we are walking, Friend XYZ asks me outright, why is brushing my teeth so hard. I start to talk and that’s when I have my brainwave, it’s because brushing my teeth isn’t ‘just’ brushing my teeth. It’s a ritual. In the same way, I can’t hoover unless I’ve done the preceding tasks, brushing my teeth is part of a morning or night routine. I can’t comprehend the concept of brushing my teeth and then getting into bed. Brushing my teeth leads on to washing my hands, which leads onto cleansing and toning my face. Next up is a layer of spot serum, then eye cream, then day/ night face serum and then moisturiser. If it’s day time, I then straighten my hair, match my body cream to my shower gel and then apply the matching perfume to 7 areas (behind each ear, my belly button, my wrists and elbow creases). If it’s night time, I then apply foot cream, spray my pillow, apply cuticle oil and hand cream and finally, the finishing flourish, some lip balm. Then, just as I am about to get into bed, I have 4 drops of Herbal Remedy Sleep drops. As you can see, if I am tired or simply don’t have the energy, that’s a lot of steps to get through. So, why even start?
I walk home after Friend XYZ catches a train. I am exhausted. Today has been ‘busy’ and emotionally tough. I can’t wait to get home and lock myself in the flat for the night. This would be a really great time to insert the fact I’ve got no plans for tomorrow so, being the sensible, healthy person I am, I now put some plans in place. Sadly, that’s not what I am about to write. I head home, lock the flat door and know that the likelihood of me leaving this flat tomorrow has just hit 0%.
I tuck into a supper of chocolate before going to bed. I should be trying to make plans to see people tomorrow to ensure I get up and out but I don’t. I get into bed and tell myself tomorrow can be a bad day.