Who’s ‘Me’?

It’s been 4 very long and very hard years since I was first diagnosed with depression and anxiety, at the time I thought if I took the pills they offered within a couple of months I would be back to ‘normal’, how wrong I was!

I have had some good times, with my mood appearing to improve for short spaces of time, but it never seemed to last. It has possibly not been helped by my very strong desire to come off medication, convinced that it was making me worse. Unfortunately instead of things improving this year that have just gone from bad to worse, and after a stay in hospital, (in March this year) I just haven’t been able to secure my footing on life.

I’ve got lots of input from services, CPN, Psychiatrist, PALS (Fitness), Pathways (Group Sessions) and also the help of family and friends. But unfortunately nothing seems to be working, I can’t seem to motivate myself, I can’t seem to see anything positive in life, and even though I am doing things, I am just going through the motions.

Because of all this I have forgotten who I am, I’ve forgotten what I used to be like, I don’t know what has always been me and what is me from the illness. I know I will never be ‘the me’ I once was, but I don’t even recognise myself these days. I struggle to remember what is happening in friends and family’s life, and therefore I am not usually there for them when they need support. I struggle to plan anything, and lists just make me anxious. I used to like lists and being organised, but it just isn’t happening at the moment.

How can anyone actually like me, when I don’t like myself, when I don’t even know who I am. I know I used to be fairly confident, and had some self belief, but now all that has gone. I find it very hard to believe that anyone really needs me as a friend, but I think I have always thought that. I guess I have never felt good enough for anyone to want to be friends with me.

My life has become a very small place, with me doing very little, and I know that the more I do the better I should feel, and I am trying, but actually it is not always that easy, and even though I have been doing things in recent weeks, apart from a very small flicker of light, I haven’t seen any improvement.

How do I get ‘me’ back? How do I find things to enjoy, how do I wean myself off playing on the iPad & iPhone and stop watching films throughout the day? A lot of people say be kind to yourself, take time to get better, do things that make you happy, but I don’t do anything all day for anyone but me. And it’s getting easier and easier to do nothing, and the feelings of guilt are just floating away. I’m not sure if that’s good or not, personally I think it’s not a good thing.

Then everything comes back to the same place, the same thoughts, the same gremlins, eating away at my mind. The gremlins that set my mind on the negative path of self destruction, the thoughts of not wanting to be here start getting stronger. I know I won’t give into the gremlins, but it’s tiring having a constant fight in your own mind.

I am hoping that one day I will get better, I will be able to function better, and I will start to find ‘me’ again.

Dark, Dark, Pit

Today I feel like I’m in a very dark, dark, pit. Last week I was feeling just a bit more positive, I thought I could maybe see a light, only very faintly, but there definitely seemed to be something. Today though all that seems to have gone, actually it started on Friday, but today it seems worse.

I want to be able to just give up, I want to just wave the white flag and say I surrender, I can’t take anymore. But I can’t, I have to keep going, for the sake of the kids and nj. My gremlins say they would be better off without me, but my sensible brain tells me that’s not true.

Being back on quietapine is some of the issue I think. I am just so so tired, all the time. Then I can’t sleep at night, which then adds to my tiredness and I end up sleeping during the day. So take today for example, I took the kids to school, and when I got back I tried to watch a bit of TV, but I was dropping off, so I went to bed and didn’t get up until after 1. Then I had no desire to do any housework. Which then makes me feel crap!!

My psychiatrist has suggested ect therapy, or lithium, as we need to try something more aggressive. Neither of them seem particularly great options, but I may be running out of choices.

It is so hard when you want to run away from everything, but the main thing I want to run away from is my brain, and I don’t think that is physically possible!!

Healthy Living

It is well know that eating healthily and doing some sort of exercise is good for your mind, unfortunately when you are in the deep depths of depression eating healthily and having the motivation to exercise are sometimes just too hard.

Over the last 9 months I have found life incredibly hard, I’ve changed meds, I’ve had a stay on a psychiatric ward, I’ve had the Crisis team involved, and my weight and any enthusiasm for life has gone to pot.

I have been signed up to PALS (Practice Activity and Leisure Scheme), which gives me some support to get fitter, but also gives me access to cheaper gym and swimming sessions. I have just done week 5, and whilst I am not overly enthusiastic about going, I am continuing to swim mostly twice a week. There is a basic circuit session that I could go to, but I haven’t built up the confidence yet to go to something like that.

My eating has been awful, eating biscuit bar after biscuit bar, then eating chocolate spread on bread (many times), then sweets and chocolate. It is no wonder that my weight is going up and not down. I’ve tried to do the 5:2 way of eating, but when I keep binge eating on the normal days it’s really not been healthy. However yesterday I decided I was going to record what I ate, and so I ate sensibly and today (so far) I am doing the same. I’m hoping that my mind may be starting to realise I have to take control of what I eat.

I’m not saying I have turned any corner, or that I am getting better, but I do think there may be a slight tiny little flickering light in my brain that is starting to see some positives.

I am hoping by writing about my healthy eating and exercising I may stick to it better.

25th September 2014

Once again I haven’t written for awhile, so I thought it was time I put fingers to keyboard and get some words down on screen!

A new chapter has started in this house as our youngest (TJ) has started full time school. So you would think that I would be much happier, more relaxed and enjoying life again, unfortunately that isn’t the case.

I saw my psychiatrist last week and as I haven’t made any real improvement he has suggested that it is time to try Lithium or ECT, neither of which seem particularly pleasant. For now though he has put me on Quietapine XL at night, it’s making me drowsy, but as yet (it’s only been a week) I haven’t felt any improvement.

I have started swimming twice a week, and I seem to be finding it easier as time goes on, but as yet I’m not getting any real enjoyment out of it. I guess it takes time to effect my well being with exercise?

So today I have spent most of the day on the sofa, watching netflix and eating food, whilst also playing games on the iPad. This seems to have become the norm for me over the last few weeks, when I’m in the house alone I seem incapable of doing anything!! Today was no different to most, except I have just felt down, fed up, and wanting to cry for no particular reason.

I have spent most of the summer holidays wishing I wasn’t here anymore, but I am because of the children and NJ. It’s been draining and hard work to deal with the constant battle in my brain. It’s also hard work when I am so short with the kids, I seem to have no tolerance, and I snap at the kids, and then complain when the eldest does the same to me and her siblings.

I have had enough of feeling like this, of feeling like I am just treading water, getting nowhere with my life, never being happy with anything. I am trying, but it feels like such hard work, and I feel that I am constantly failing, failing at being a wife, mum, friend, and failing at living life. I don’t know what to do anymore, have I just got to live with how I feel, learn how to say that everything is fine, should I stop telling people how I am feeling? I feel lost and alone, and stuck in a pit with no way out.

It would be good to know peoples’s experience with Lithium or ECT, my diagnosis (I think) is depression and anxiety.