It’s Been Awhile!!

It’s Been Awhile!!

Ok, its been 2 months since I last blogged and since then my emotions, depression and anxiety have been all over the place!

After trying to come off Venlavaxine I only last a couple of days before I gave up, the withdrawal symptoms were horrendous – and no one had any wise ideas of how to improve it, or make it easier. So I went back to 150mg. I see my psychiatrist at the end of Feb, so I will ask him then what he suggests.

Leading up to Christmas I started to get into a really positive mood, everything felt great and I was feeling good about the future and me, I felt strong enough to battle the gremlins in my mind, they were still there but I could push them away. I wasn’t feeling as negative, I wasn’t feeling so down on myself. During this time I saw the 3 health professionals who have seen me the most; CPN, GP and Psychologist and all 3 said I was looking and sounding really good. My CPN said it was the best she had ever seen me. All of this made me feel even better, I felt I had finally started to turn a corner, I knew there would still be a way to go, but I also knew that I was finally getting stronger and coming out of the darkness.

Unfortunately that didn’t last, I’m not sure if it was just before or just after Christmas, but I felt my mood drop. There is nothing specific that I can pin point to say there was a trigger, my mood just seemed to slightly drop. From then on my mood was low, grouchy with the kids and fairly useless around the house.

I saw my CPN last week and  it transpired that I was missing my closest friend and also jealous as she had got a part time job from the New Year and she had also got a puppy after the summer holidays. I ended up in tears, but it did make me feel slightly better to have off loaded some feelings, even though I hadn’t realised they were effecting me so much.

Then last Friday I had a day out at a conference (of sorts) for my business, it was a really good inspiring day and I came away with lots of positive ideas and thoughts. Monday saw me planning what I would get done during the day, having coffee with friends (whilst the kids played) and then a productive afternoon. Tuesday was a very productive day, I had a meeting with my mentor and then I spent the afternoon on my business and also got the news that I might have someone who wants sponsoring. I felt great, I was really inspired, I was motivated and felt really good.

As always it didn’t last, Wednesday saw my mood drop – just because a friend wasn’t able to meet for coffee and another was already busy. I felt unwanted, un-friended (not sure that is a word??), and generally down on myself. The urges to self harm were strong – but I didn’t act on anything. Then again today my mood feels flat and down, I feel empty.

I have so much to live for; I have 3 great kids, I know they can be pains and I want to shake the eldest to get her stirred up about something, but she can still be very kind and loving and I know she is great when she is with her friends and at school. I have a good business, that I believe could be great and give us the income we would like – I just need to work harder at it! I have a husband who really loves me – something that I don’t deserve, but he’s stuck by me over the last few years and I should really be more grateful and realise that he does actually like me!

So why, if I know these things, do I feel so down? Why do I sometimes feel I just don’t want to be here? Why do I want to constantly harm myself with something sharp? I know no one can really answer this questions, but for me it is mind blowing. I can go from being so high, to so low in a matter of hours and even though the rational side of me knows that things are good, the other side of me just says how rubbish everything and everything about me is.

So yes, its been awhile since I last blogged, but my mind has been all over the place and so many times I sat to blog and the words just didn’t flow. Hopefully I have broken that barrier for now and I will try and blog more frequently.

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What am I?

What am I?

Earlier in the week I blogged about not knowing who I was, I still don’t know who I am, but I do know what I am.

I have realised that I am selfish, all I think about is how I feel, how what the kids do or say makes me feel,  how what my husband might say or do might make me feel. I have forgotten to listen to everyone else and see how they feel, how what I am saying or doing is effecting my family and friends.

When I see my CPN and Psychologist I seem to say the same things over and over again, I can’t cope with the way my children are behaving, I don’t know how to control them, I have nothing to aim for, I have no goals in life, I don’t know what makes me happy. It’s all about ‘me. me, me’!! I need to change, and I need to do that now.

Maybe if I stopped thinking about me, then I would get better, or at least spend less time thinking about my thoughts and feelings and therefore I wouldn’t have the time to dip into a big hole! I would get more done around the house, I would get more done with the business and I would have more time to spend with the kids and my husband.

I need to start now, but not sure how I will achieve it, I’m not sure if I’m able to do it anymore. Before I was ill I always thought about others, how my actions affected others, but I also got on with life, the housework and spending time with the kids.

Was I happy? I don’t know, my husband might have an answer to that, I can’t remember. I do know that I wasn’t happy in my job at work, and I struggled with not having friends, but was I happy at home, and with the kids, I’ve no idea. It’s hard to remember a time before I was ill, and maybe that’s the problem, I can’t remember what it’s like to not be ill and what it’s like to not know about depression and anxiety, I also can’t remember what it’s like to not have health professionals just at the end of the phone or only a week away from an appointment.

I read and talk to others who have got mental health problems, and I wonder why I have been supported so well over the last 3 years, when there are so many others that are not getting the same support but seem to be in a much worse place than me. Why is it seemed that I need this support – do they see something that I don’t? Or is it  just that the selfish person I am is clinging to something that I no longer need?

I don’t have any answers, except I know that I have become selfish and self absorbed and I need to change. If anyone has any good suggestions on how not to be self absorbed please let me know!

Normal?

Normal?

I’m starting to struggle again and I don’t feel like I have anyone to turn to. I’m fed up of feeling like this, I know I have got friends, but what they see doesn’t seem to go with how I feel on the inside. Also, I am fed up of being the one who is still not right, the one that is still saying I don’t feel great, that I’m having negative thoughts, that sometimes I wish I didn’t have to deal with life.

I know I’m being selfish and everyone has their problems and it can’t always be about me, and I don’t expect it to be about me, in fact I don’t want it to be about me. I want to be ‘normal’ to not be constantly thinking about how I feel, is this a little or big dip, is it just a blip? I wish I could go back out the door I walked into 3 years ago and forget everything I have learnt. It almost feels like a curse knowing so much about depression and anxiety, constantly being careful about other peoples feelings and emotions. I was always the person that thought of others before myself, but now I think more about how they might be feeling, that something might have happened, that they may have their own emotional issues.

I would like to erase my knowledge of CPN’s, Psychiatrists, Psychologists and any other health professional that I have had dealings with. Maybe if I could do that I could start to lead a normal life again? I’m quite sane and know that the above is not possible, but we all need our dreams. I would love to be transported back to before I started feeling like this, how did I feel, how did I feel about the children? How did I feel about NJ? What were my thoughts on life? I have so many questions that no one can answer, and I don’t think I will ever be able to answer them either.

In 2 days it is the school holidays, so it will be 3 years since I realised that all was not right with me, although it took till the end of the holidays to take the step to get some help, but maybe that was the wrong choice, maybe I should have battled on like I always did? Maybe then I would now be leading a ‘normal’ life (not sure what that is though!).

For now though I guess I have got to just get on with the life I have, and try and stop feeling sorry for myself and enjoy the sunshine and having the kids at home!

Gremlins

Gremlins

After feeling quite despondent after last weeks psychology appointment I wasn’t sure how this week would go, suffice to say that it was much more hard going, which has left me feeling down, quiet and emotional.

I know I have to go through all this to be able to somehow come out on the other side, but I don’t think I realised how much just one difficult session would effect me. I talked about me, and how I feel about me, and how I feel others see me, it was mostly about my relationship with my mum, or lack of, but it has sent me back to the darker place. NJ asked me yesterday what the session was about, and I could only say what I said above, but it was more than that, but it is hard to explain, and some of the things just make me sound more weird than I already am!

So today I have struggled with my emotions, TJ is at home as we have swapped her playgroup morning to fit in with other things this week, but it means I have been at home and not visiting friends like I would normally do on her day with me. I could easily have sat and done nothing, I was going that way and had even given in to TJ watching beebies, but fortunately (I guess) the postman arrived with some baby plants that needed to be potted, so as it wasn’t raining we togged up and went outside for an hour, meaning I was distracted for some time and TJ got some fresh air.

TJ is now in bed and I am left alone to think, which is really not a good idea at the moment, but she needs sleep and the school run is not that far off. I should be busying myself with housework but it is never very inviting at the best of times. I am now thinking how long will my gremlins stay in my head this time, will I be able to shake them off in a couple of days, or will they still be there where I head back to the psychologist and therefore be given more food to grow?

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Love

L is for Love

What is the first thing you think of when you hear the word love? I am so predictable and always think of flowers and hearts, the romantic side of love, but there are different types of love and they do not all involve hearts and flowers.

The love you feel for your child is all-consuming, no matter what they do you will always love them, its unconditional, its full of hugs and cuddles, and I guess some hearts and flowers and maybe even chocolates (if daddy is feeling generous!).

The love you feel for your parents and siblings is again unconditional, you are bound by blood and even if at times you do not like them they are still your family and if others try to bad mouth them you will step in and fight their corner. Some people have very strong bonds with their immediate family, I, unfortunately do not so can only comment from my own experience.

The love you feel for close friends is one that will have developed slowly, I have 4 close friends, 3 of which live close by and I find it strange when I am not in contact with them, and worry for them when things are difficult and I enjoy spending time with them. The 4th friend I have known longer than NJ, and even though we are rubbish with keeping in touch we always manage to pick up where we left off when we meet up.

The love you feel for a pet can sometimes be the same as for a child, you worry about them, and want the best for them, but whilst you may get to cuddle some pets it’s not the same as your own flesh and blood. (Note that this knowledge may change in a few months when I have had the kittens for a while)

Some people love pop stars and other famous people, and are devastated if a group splits up, but as I have not had that infatuation I am not best place to comment on it, I did have a crush on a couple of actors, but that’s as far as it went.

Your first love is one that most people will never forget, but even though at the time you will disagree it is not the same love as ‘the one’, for most it is an innocent love, that gives you butterfly’s in your stomach and you feel wonderful that someone else feels the same way about you.

I think many pf us will have fallen in love a few times with a partner, but for me whilst it was good, it was never complete until I met NJ, it’s often hard to describe, but it all just felt right, we were just like 2 jigsaw pieces that needed to be together. I knew I was fully in love and had found the one I wanted to be with when I decoded I wasn’t bothered about a career, but wanted to get married and have children. This is the love that is full of hearts and flowers, but also full of apologies when things are done wrong, and forgiveness.

What does Love mean to you? Have you found ‘the one’ or are you still looking?

Image: Salvatore Vuono / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Our Half Term Break

Our Half Term Break

The kids broke up on Thursday 9th and we have had a lovely half term, (or so it appears) this is what we did:

Friday: We went to friends in the morning and in the afternoon the older 2 watched the Smurfs DVD and really enjoyed it.

Monday: We had friends round for lunch, which was actually provided by the, which was very nice, AJ played with her best friend and I nattered to her mum whilst FJ watched a DVD and TJ slept.

Tuesday: The kids spent the day with grandparents, they seem to have done quite a bit with them & had a really good day. I had a day to myself and had intended to have a stroll round the shops and then a coffee in one of the nice cafe’s, that didn’t happen. I did manage to watch a DVD and read some blogs.

Wednesday: I looked after a friends little girl who is the same age as FJ as she was working. We did some sticking, some drawing, had a walk to the swing park and then they just played. When mum came to pick up we had a coffee & a natter.

Thursday: AJ was invited out with a friend bike riding & a picnic. F had a pyjama day and we did some more sticking. Then in the afternoon whilst TJ slept FJ helped me make a chilli and then watched (another!) DVD.

Friday: We went to friends this morning, kids played dressing up and had (mostly) a good time. I had a natter & a coffee with the mum’s then we had lunch. This afternoon the kids played on the computer and then they watched a DVD.

The kids say they have had a good holiday and we have been kept busy. Unfortunately I don’t feel at all positive about the break, I feel they have watched too much television / DVD’s and I’ve not interacted with them enough.

Whilst I still worked I really wanted the opportunity to have the holidays with the kids, to be able to do activities and have fun. But I’ve not enjoyed the time, on many occasion I just wanted to go back to bed, or just leave them too it (I wouldn’t before anyone starts to ring SS!). My mood is really low and I just haven’t got the energy to enjoy being with them. I just hope that come Easter my mood will have picked up and I can actually enjoy the days and do some special things with them.

How do you Know?

How do you Know?

How do you know that what you are experiencing is depression? What is the difference between depression and frustration with a situation? Whats the difference between depression and laziness?

I don’t know the answers to these questions, or the answers to many more that I have going round my head right now. However what I do know is that at the moment I don’t feel ‘right’, which is a very hard thing to describe. I feel very distant from everyone, NJ, the children, friends, everyone. On the surface I probably seem quite ok, I will chat and smile and do and say the right things, but inside I feel numb and distant from everything. I feel the desire to turn away and avoid any conversation.

The smallest thing that doesn’t go to plan, or the raised voice of NJ upsets me, but I have to hold it together when the children are about, and often they are the ones that I am getting frustrated with.

The constant mess in the house frustrates and stresses me, yet I seem unable to keep the place tidy, apparently I have always been like this, so it’s unlikly to be a sign of depression. I am just someone with no ‘get up and go’, yet somewhere along the way I have been ill and have been given medication and therapy so now I am confused and don’t know what is real and what is in my head.

Over the last few weeks I have been visited by my gremlins, they are quite persuasive whilst invading my brain, and sometimes the thoughts become all-consuming that I forget everything else that is going on around me. I am also quite obsessed with how I feel mentally and physically, is this lack of energy due to poor eating, lack of exercise or is it really a sign that I have slipped down the spiral again?

I want to believe that I am ill, because what if I’m not?  What if I am just feeling sorry for myself, and not doing enough to pick myself up? What if I was to get up in the morning and say all is well, and keep smiling and keeping happy thoughts in my mind, is that all it would take? Unfortunately the more I think about it the more the gremlins start shouting, and the more I feel like walking out and leaving everything behind, but you can’t run away from your mind! I know I won’t walk out, where would I go, what would happen to the children and it won’t make me feel any different.

I am not sure there are any answers to these questions, but I’m willing to see if anyone has them.