November 30, 2011

Been a hard day today

Been very emotional today, anxious, crying in spurts, stressed out....remembering bits of things I never did before, tossing things around in my mind, trying to connect the dots of my habits and thoughts now and where they come from, correcting negative thoughts as they come up. It feels like I opened pandoras box yesterday. Was I really hiding all of this inside of me all these years? It's no wonder I have had so many problems.

I feel like I'm living off Vistaril today. I called and left a message for the nurse at my doctor's office to call me in the morning, maybe I need something to calm me down better for a couple weeks while I go through this.

I've gotten some good advice from a few people i chat with that have went through this process of intense post traumatic stress therapy and everything I said I've been going through today, they went through too. They said it will get easier, but in the beginning it's pretty hard. More than anything they said to be good to myself and find happy and humorous things in between and it will help me as I go along. So I will.

I knew it was going to be hard to deal with, I sure didn't understand how hard. But I'm here, I'm alive, I'm going to survive this.

-M

November 29, 2011

Exhausted.

My appointment with Dr. G. was nothing short of exhausting, but needed really badly. I think there has been a part of me that never thought I could say anything about how I really feel about her. That I would carry it around as some sort of secret I would never get rid of. That I would never talk about the monster she was for me, because I wasn't allowed to talk about it.

Dr. G. was more right than I thought he was. I was not allowed to tell dad the way she treated me (though i tried anyhow) or argue back or fight back without being physically hurt. For seven years I heard nothing but what a horrible person I was, that I didn't deserve to even be alive and that everyone, including my father, hated me. I was to blame for everything and deserved to be hit, kicked, screamed at and tortured in various little ways. I had no one to talk to about it. No one to tell me the lies were not true. No one to just wrap their arms around me and say it was okay, that I was loved. All I had was myself and I dealt with it by putting a smile on my face and hiding the pain, my thoughts, everything. I hid them but they have always still been there.

I tried to hide them with drugs and alcohol. All the bad things she said to me, I now say to myself - I learned that lesson well. When I am angry at myself, I hurt myself, - like she used to.

I hid my face when I cried today because I would get teased and hit for crying, it's all I know. He tried to reassure me, that I wasn't in trouble, but in the back of my mind, that old instinct was there, still trying to protect me. As a defense mechanism, to keep from being hit or kicked, I turned my feelings inward, especially anger and sorrow. Through sobs he got me to admit how angry I am at the way I was treated and what a bitch she really was. I learned not to stand up for myself, not to argue and to smooth everything over and prevent anyone from getting angry with me and I still do that to this day.

It was so hard, to express what I was feeling and admit those feelings. I still felt like I'd get into trouble. I summoned just enough courage today to vent some of that pent up hatred and sadness. It was SO hard to do. Waiting to be told I was lying or get yelled at. I was shaking. But of course, that didn't happen. Instead I was encouraged, told it was okay and that people really do love me no matter what.

It seemed to open up a well inside of me. Crying so hard, letting out some of that anger, sadness, sorrow. It was hard to actually stop. But it is okay. I'm learning that crying is okay. That I need to vent and I probably will over the next few days. Sort of like grieving in a way. I want to get it all out of my system and start learning that I don't need those survival mechanisms any longer. To learn over again. Because she's not here anymore. And she never will be again.

-M

~Lovely Music~

*146 Days*

I think for a little while anyways, my depression is gone. The only problem now is.... I'm worried I'm going the other way. Manic here we go? I wish I could have a happy medium. At the moment I am greatly enjoying my manicness though. Apartment is almost completely cleaned, I caught up over thirty pages in my written journal yesterday (yeah wrote thirty pages in one day...like I said, manic?), organized the rest of the stuff on my computer, organized my email, posted like crazy on a couple of message boards and currently working on my homework for DBT and working on my Elton fans group survey. Look out to those who get to fill it out...it may end up REALLY long now!! :P

At least I'm getting things done and not swallowed in depression.... At some point I'll have to tell Dr. B. about this though, but I don't wanna yet....this is the most energized I've felt since before I left partial (when I think now I was on another manic high).

I created a playlist on the laptop yesterday and went a little overboard and it now has over 200 songs on it :P It's a GREAT playlist. Here's some of the songs on it:

I Need You To Turn To - Elton John
It's Your Love - Tim McGraw
Tell Her About It - Billy Joel
Whatever Happens - Michael Jackson and Santana
Beautiful Day - U2
Sweet Child O' Mine - GNR
Give Peace A Chance - John Lennon
Authority Song - John Mellencamp
Invisible Touch - Genesis
Wanted Dead Or Alive - Bon Jovi
Fire And Rain - James Taylor
Bleed Red - Ronnie Dunn
Livin On The Edge - Aerosmith
American Woman - Lenny Kravitz
Who'll Stop The Rain - CCR
I Heard It Through The Grapevine - Marvin Gaye
Take It Easy - The Eagles
Worlds Apart - Bruce Springsteen
Somebody To Love - George Michael
Beautiful Stranger - Madonna
Dear Mr. President - Pink
If You're Gone - Matchbox Twenty
Gotham City - R. Kelly
Tower Of Babel - Elton John
In The Heart Of A Woman - BRC
Return To Sender - Elvis Presley
Father Figure - George Michael
The Power Of Love - Huey Lewis And The News
The Freshman - The Verve
Dreams - Fleetwood Mac
Take It To The Limit - The Eagles
Allentown - Billy Joel
This Used To Be My Playground - Madonna
Wake Up Call - Maroon 5
Stranger In Moscow - Michael Jackson
Poker Face - Lady Gaga
One Headlight - The Wallflowers

And on and on and on .....

Yeah I know, very eclectic mix... but keeping me entertained.

Hope everyone is having a good day :)

-M

November 27, 2011

Tomorrow is the day....

....that either justice will do what it is supposed to do or it will be the worst FAIL I've ever seen.

My friend's lying, cheating, abusing, manipulating, assholeabouttobeexboyfriend, goes to court. It is like our own little D Day. Will the judge do what he's supposed to and revoke his probation for lying to him and having seven more probation violations, including domestic violence, using drugs with another on probation and saying his son was dead when he isn't.... Will he finally revoke it and send him back to jail/DOC/prison to serve his full sentence? We'll see....

Cross your fingers for my friend. If he is incarcerated, my friend can finally get his name off the lease, move his stuff to his family, write him that she's breaking up with him and not taking any abuse any long, and start her new life that she deserves. Cross your fingers hard....

-M

Might get an emergency appt. with Dr. B. next week.

*140 Days*

I spent over an hour last night talking to a group of people on a mental health board I go on. I went into the chat there because I wanted some explanations and first hand experiences with the whole manic depressive psychosis thing so I could pinpoint it easier in myself. It turned out to be a really great thing. I ended up in chat with a few people that have it.

They asked me a lot of stuff about the struggles I have and they started pointing to things. It's hard to get my head around. It's like, it's my reality and it's what I know and then someone is like, well that's not good, that's not right.... I panicked for a while last night over it but after having that long chat they calmed me down a lot, saying that it just means my life is more interesting....one way to put it....lol. For me delusions are things like being convinced everyone I don't know is out to get me, hurt me, etc. Anyone from the mailman to someone walking down the street. I triple lock my doors, don't open my window shades, change only in the bathroom, because I think people are spying on me. I have no idea why, it just is. I had the same problems at the apartment in Milwaukee and have had them on and off as far back as I can remember anyway. In 8th grade I was convinced drug lords were after me and I carried a steak knife in my jacket and book bag until someone found it. Of course I made up an excuse why I had it.

My biggest thing is that I think all these things yet can't step back and really look at them until it's pointed out to me. Even then I can't really get my head around it, but I'm a little more aware, although it hasn't changed anything.

I have a good start combating this with the Risperidone but I'm not near the right dosing. I want to sit down with Dr. B this week and talk to him about all this, then talk about the dosing. I'm on 1mg, which is barely in the therapeutic range. So we are going to have a discussion about it and if he'd be willing to up it over two months to see if it helps. It's an atypical anti psychotic and is often used for this type of thing.

We'll see.....
-M

November 26, 2011

Getting a new blog theme....

I really like this one, but I hate how it doesn't show the full posts on the main page. I think I'll make up a simple one for now until I get more creativity going again.

-M

Back Online

*139 Days*

Sorry I haven't posted in a few days.... My neighbor who let me share internet moved out, so I was internetless. Also, with the depression I just haven't been motivated enough to go to the library. In a great turn of events, another neighbor is letting me jump off his Wifi. I thanked him continuously lol.

I'm feeling just that little bit better. I think the Lamictal is starting to kick in which is really good. I feel the dark cloud lifting some. Today I had more energy than I have in a while. Straightened my hair, cleaned my whole kitchen, etc. It's a positive sign.

Creatively I'm still pretty much at zero, I'm really hoping that comes back soon. I'm having a hard time even getting through writing this short blog. It sucks!

Hope everyone is doing well :)
-M

November 24, 2011

Blogs While In The Hospital

I wrote blog entries by hand almost all the days I was in the hospital, posting them all in one post:

11/18/11

Friday night was up there on my list of bad episodes. Not anywhere near the worst, but enough to be really worried. It basically was like a snowball effect. I'd been depressed for a few weeks and it was starting to seem like I was getting worse. I'd been to Dr. B to increase my Effexor from 150-225mg. It didn't seem to be helping. After a week or a little more, I should have called again...but it's like I didn't want to be a bother. I understand now that I need to be a lot more vigilant about this. The snowball started building...I got more depressed...I started sleeping more, eating less...I found my humor going away, my motivation too...my place was starting to get messier, I started isolating...at this point I should have called Dr. B's office. It's easier to see it afterwards, at the time I was too wrapped up in it to see it.

Friday my depression got dramatically worse as the day went on. Once the really bad negativity starts, it's all downhill. Everything is very doom and gloom, nothing will ever get better, no one likes me, I'm nothing but a huge bother, I'm an embarrassment to everyone, everything she ever said is completely true in my mind and I'd be better off dead and free from emotional turmoil and pain....

Then I started to take it out on myself. Picking at my fingers until they bled, cutting lines up my leg with a razor,etc. I sink lower and lower, completely isolated, sleeping almost all of the time, not answering my phone, just....alone, becoming hopeless and not brave enough to say anything, suffering, wanting to die, planning in my head, to take all of my medications at once...

Then a friend calls me. I talk to her about what is happening and she convinces me to go with her to a NA meeting, just to get out of the apartment. I really wanted to say no but I know I needed to get out of there and not be alone, so I go. I'm not my usual smiley self and people see it. People talk to me, give me hugs, but I feel dissasociated, disconnected, like I'm not even in the room, everything moves around me but I am completely still, unable to enjoy all the familiar faces and really hear the stories people share during the group. I'm off somewhere else, back in time....bad memories, flashes of abuse and words, passing by. All of it shaken, unsettled, loosening up by the intense therapy that has slowly started the journey of going through things I'd never even written down before, hardly admitted to myself, let alone anyone else.

After the meeting, a good friend of mine, who went through partial with me, talked me into going up to the hospital. She had to work on me for a while, as I said absolutely not, over and over, lying to myself that things weren't that bad, her telling me how bad it actually was, how important I was to her, how important I should be to myself.

In the end, she won. I agreed to go. I didn't want to go, but I didn't know what I might do either. Being alone really wasn't an option anymore. On top of it all, it wasn't a bad idea to get checked out, as my cuts were deeper this time. She took me up there, after I grabbed some clothes and things in a bag from the apartment. She walked me up to the 2nd floor, then I gave her a hug and said thank you. I think I knew in my heart I needed to go in, I just needed someone to tell me it too.

The first thing they do before you go on the unit for an assessment is they have you empty your pockets of everything you have, for me it included my phone, my ID & Medicaid card, keys, etc. Then they wand you to make sure you don't have anything else on you that might be dangerous. Once on the unit, I went into the assessment room to have a talk about what was going on and I was just sobbing. I told them about how hard things were and how I just kept getting more depressed. How I feel so hopeless and just not in any kind of control of my mood, thoughts or behaviors right now. How I'm disassociating so badly I can hardly concentrate or focus on anything. We also talked about how hard therapy has been for me and how it has brought up so much in my mind, more things I'm remembering and that a lot of emotion has been coming with it. That I'm wrestling right now between the person someone growing up said I was and the person I really am underneath but just haven't been able to tap into yet.

They were very understanding. They agreed a big trigger to all this is probably the therapy. That it can be normal for people to go into depression while peeling back the emotional layers of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. They understood I didn't want to go into the hospital, but said it was a really good idea, especially with what I did to myself, so that they could readjust my meds and help me with some things. In the end, I signed myself in voluntarily. They had called Dr. B. who just happened to be on call until Saturday evening and he told them to tell me not to worry, he'd be there bright and early in the morning.

I didn't have to do the strip down search (yay) and I didn't have to take a shower before being shown my room (yay). I ended up in room 208, the last patient room on the east end of the hall. I ended up going to bed right away, because I was as tired as I'd been for days. They woke me up at some point to take my meds and then I slept again.


11/19/11

I didn't really do anything on Saturday. I slept most of the day. I got up for one meal, but that was about it. All I wanted to do was sleep. They tried to get me to come out of my room, but I just had no interest in it at all. They did wake me up when Dr. B. came on the unit, as he wanted to see me right away. We talked a lot about the PTSD and how it's been affecting me. We also talked a lot about the disassociation and how it's been getting worse. He decided to up my Effexor to 300mg, but he said he might not keep it there. He also started me on Lamictal. 50mg to start then raising it in a few days. He said in the meantime just to relax, stay calm and we'd get things under control. Then he made a joke to make me smile and gave me a big hug :)


11/20/11

Sunday I didn't get up, didn't eat breakfast, they gave me my morning pills in bed and I just went back to sleep. Around 11am or so, I finally got up and decided to force myself into a shower. It felt great to have a shower but awful on my leg...Afterwards they put some antibiotic cream on it after checking it to make sure it was okay. Then I pushed myself to do a load of my laundry and make my bed. I wanted to try to join the land of the living. Got through lunch, but then took a nap. I got up in the afternoon and Dr. H came onto the unit. He made a beeline right for me and pulled me aside to have a talk with me. We talked mostly about the PTSD, he wanted to make sure that Dr. G. and myself weren't moving to fast on the therapy to the point I was getting completely overwhelmed. I don't think the problem is going too quickly, I think it's just very difficult for me to talk through what is very painful for me and althought I know coping skills I'm having a very hard time using them. I think maybe I'm spending too much of my time thinking about it and I need to work on it here and there and think happy thoughts the rest of the time instead of thinking negative almost all of the time.

We talked about the disassociation and he said that I don't necessarily have disassociation but racing thoughts. Racing thoughts are a stream of thoughts going on in the background of other thoughts or take up the whole conscious. Components of racing thoughts can include music, snatches of conversation from movies or television or books, one's own voice or other voices repeating a phrase or sentences again and again, or even rhythms of pressure without any "sound" in the thought. For me it just goes on and on and on and it's why when someone talks to me many times I say huh? or what? It's because I'm 'listening to my head' as I call it and don't hear what someone is saying to me. I've had problems with it since I was at least in 7th grade, where I can remember specific incidences of teachers trying to get my attention and I didn't even realize they were talking to me.

He told me my bipolar diagnosis isn't just Bipolar I, but manic depressive psychosis. Of course this scared the hell out of me...... psychosis? Me? He explained that for me the psychosis is delusions, not hallucinations. I need to do more reading on it before I can explain much more, to see if the delusions have to do with the many false beliefs I have, especially about myself and of the way I think people look and think of me vs. reality, but the way he explained it, I think this is what he meant. I'll talk to the docs more about this.

Dr. H. also expressed the need to find other ways to cope with my frustrations and anger instead of cutting. He said that he's worried because it has escalated in the sense of them being deeper than any of the three or four times I've come in there before with cuts. I have to find alternatives somehow. I'm going to start a list of alternatives. He was extremely please and said how proud of me he was, that I have remained drug and alcohol free for as long as I have. Some of the nurses said the same thing when the drug screen came back. Through all of this I can still say it is the one thing I'm doing very well right now.


11/21/11

The rest of Sunday I didn't do much, still wasn't much up for groups, thought I ate all three meals. Got to know some of my fellow patients better and was amazed to see how many were having similar symptoms. This is my first time on the unit where over half the patients are sleeping all day every day. Lots of depression going on around here.

Monday was a good day. Got to sit down with my social worker for while I'm on the unit. She said she was really happy I checked myself in and she gave me a lot of info on PTSD and growing up in an abusive environment. The info helped a lot. She poked and prodded and I told her some of the stuff that went on when I was a kid, to document in my file. She said she had a strong feeling something like that happened to me because of a lot of my symptoms and my over politeness, etc. She said she was proud that I was finally opening up about all of it.

Talked to Dr. H. and his plan is for me to go home tomorrow. We all really want me to get out in time to make my appointment with Dr. G at 3pm on Tuesday, so they plan to get me out in time to make that appt.

Did groups, which was really good. They did one on coping skills that was really really good. Did one on self esteem too that I liked. They finally have a new art therapy lady which is great. She is awesome. We ended up painting which is always fun.

11/22/11

Went to groups in the morning and did art therapy. I painted a wooden box, then painted a small wooden cat picture frame. I ended up gluing it to the box and dedicating it to samsam and will put a small piccy of her in the frame. :D Of course it was purple and black...my favorite colors together.

Did all my discharge paperwork, went over all my meds, was given a sheet with my upcoming appointments on it. Then had to strip my bed, pack my stuff and sign a sheet saying all my stuff from the safe was there. At 2:40 pm I was set free (yay). Then I rushed to get to Dr. G's office in time for my 3pm appt.

Dr. Graham was happy to see me....gave me a big hug. He was like...you're out! :P I didn't know if he even knew or not. I told them Monday morning he needed to be contacted but I didn't find out if they ever did. He said they told him about it when he got on the 2nd floor for partial a few hours before I was discharged. Well, at least they let him know, saved me some explaining.

We talked about a LOT during that 45 minute session. He talked again about how I've taken over her job of punishing me by doing it myself. He was like, you are using cutting as a form of self punishment.... I'm this bad horrible person....cut....I can't do anything right....cut....I'm never going to get any better....cut..... He was right, and for some reason that hurt. By the time he was done with that bit, I was in tears.

We also talked about how in a way I've turned her into like this god over me, who I still let control me, what I think, what I feel, what I do and I can't seem to let go of that. My homework is to write about that, to get into detail about it. So, as hard as it might be, I will.

Afterwards I finally got to go home, which I was very happy for.



Those are my posts. Sorry it is SO long, but you know, I had some time on my hands...
-M

November 22, 2011

Will write more tomorrow

Sorry I haven't been on, I got really bad again, and ended up in the hospital. I got out this afternoon, feeling better than I did, but not anywhere near how I was before I started getting depressed again. I see my psychiatrist tomorrow and we'll talk more about meds. There is still one thing I need to see if meds can help or not. Anyhow, will write more soon. Hope everyone is well.

-M

November 17, 2011

Weird Dreams/Good Day

I had the most messed up dreams last night... Yay for Trazodone (gives more vivid dreams)...

I had a long dream that I started using again :( I have no idea where I was, some person's house. They handed me like three joints and I smoked them all while regretting it at the same time. Then I was wandering around town high trying to find Bille and Dr. G. and was searching all these buildings and not being able to find them. It was just really strange....

I woke up like.........OMG! It took me a minute to realize it was a dream and that I hadn't done anything and then was so happy that I'm still 130 days clean....

Got some coffee in me while I woke up. I was shocked I slept until almost 1pm...I must have turned my alarm off while still mostly asleep. This is why I usually put the phone on the other side of the room, but failed to do so last night.

The rest of the day should be a good day. I'm finishing the apartment today...yay. Then making a list of extra projects, sorting the closet and such. Got a lot of my music put onto this computer yesterday so I have lots to listen to while I get stuff done. When I take breaks I'm going to work on organizing the computer, cleaning up my email, etc. It all got pretty cluttered and piled up because of the depression. Planning to hit an NA meeting with a few people as well this evening.

Should be a nice day full of accomplishments :)

How is everyone doing today? Good day for all I hope.

-M

Don't forget the positive affirmations....

:)





November 16, 2011

Doing a bit better today

*130 Days* (130 days drug and alcohol free...woot!)

Cannot believe it's been that long, I'm actually really proud of myself :D I can actually say that and mean it!

Today I feel a little better than I have in weeks. Just a little, but it is a start. Yesterday, being able to vent so much and talk about things I never told anyone, really seemed to help some. It was like having a huge elephant on my shoulders and he's lost a lot of weight now... I'm having a very hard time with some of it though. This dark part of me vs. the real me. It's hard to start trying to see the good in me, to extinguish the negative as it comes, but maybe what i need is a lot of practice at it? I'm writing a lot of my thoughts down right now, as I start to sort through all this. I keep going back to my 'movie' to remind myself of that happy and negative free person that is in me.

I had my DBT class last night and WOW! was I confused! I think we are going out of order on the modules, so I'm trying to make the best of it. We went from the Mindfullness module to the Interpersonal Effectiveness one. It's like a foreign language to me. I did look a while ago, at the website I reference off of and that helped to clarify some of it for me. I'll be using a LOT of time this week to work on this module and understand it. Sairs....watch out, questions may be on the way.....

Big news going on regarding the people who used to live in the old building. The ones that caused me so much stress and all. Both the mother and the son got arrested on separate sides of town at almost the exact same time today. Seriously. The mom shoplifted from the grocery store around the same time the son actually tried to walk out of the library with one of their computers. I couldn't help it, when I heard what he did I laughed and kept getting the giggles for almost an hour. Who tries to steal a library computer in the middle of the day with people in there!!! WTF!! IDIOT.

Anyhow, off to have a wonderful bean soup dinner with a friend, then back to play online, as the internet goes away in a few days :( The guy who let me jump on his wifi is moving out. In a way it's good, because it will force me to walk my antisocial butt down to the library with the laptop to use the internet.

-M

November 15, 2011

Hard Therapy 2

*128 Days*

The other day I wrote out a lot of specific things that were done to me as a child, abuse that myself and one other person knew about (thought I've found a surprising amount of family members who had told me their own stories of things they remember that I didn't) who of course was the one doing all these things. I started writing some of these things and then counteracting them with something positive, like I didn't deserve this, I didn't do anything wrong to have this happen, etc. It started out around three pages long. It was an assignment given to me by Dr. G. It put me sort of in a state where I was preoccupied and thinking of the things often, remembering the sounds, my emotions, etc. It seemed to be having sort of a build up effect and I had a very hard concentrating for a couple days and feeling very very low. After a while I felt like I was ten years old again, with all the old sadness and emotions waving through me.

Yesterday, I started writing more. I wasn't counteracting but just writing and it seemed like a bunch of things I'd forgotten all about I was suddenly remembering and writing down and it got me very upset. I was so just anguished and sad and distraught that I called a friend and ended up staying at her place last night so I wouldn't be alone.

Today was my weekly appt. with Dr. G and I brought all that I had written with me. I was still so emotional I was already in tears before I even sat down on the couch. I gave them to him to read as I just sat inside my memories with tears streaming down my face. He read all of it, getting more irritated as he read, all the things that had been said and done to me that I never deserved and that no one else saw and rarely anyone believed. It was really hard to let someone read all of it, but I know by now that he won't criticize and that I really needed to have someone I trust read it and help me with all this.

He compared what I went through for a few years as a kid with someone, with a person being in a concentration camp. Being brainwashed into believing all these things that weren't true about myself, that I was a mistake, I did everything wrong, no one really loved me, I was a terrible person and stupid etc. That I deserved to be hit, screamed at, punished in cruel ways, threatened, etc.

He said that us prying this open was a good thing, no matter how awful it is making me feel. Because my mind has opened me up to more of what I tried to block out, that it is finally letting me see it all for what it was, so I could sort through it all, deal with it realistically and emotionally and to finally be able to say how it was, how it made me feel and to speak openly about it all and know I'm being believed and understood. To reverse all the effects that it has cascaded onto me over the years, to show me the person I actually am vs. the person I was made to believe I am. And with more work, be able to put it in perspective and to let it go and live freely without it torturing me anymore. To be able to accept and be myself, my true self. Not to ever believe the false messages of abuse pushed on to me ever again.

We were basically tapping into the 10 year old Misty. So he could see things through that young Misty's eyes. He knows more about who I am now, and who I was then, than he ever has. He understands where my depression, self hatred, self abusive person has come from, how I took over from the person who did all these things and did them to myself.

All the things he was observing, knowing and telling me exactly what I had been feeling and thought of myself, was really upsetting, just hearing it all said out loud, just kept me crying. It was like just so much of my hurt was coming out today. He said that he absolutely believes me and wanted to make sure I knew that.

He asked me to think of a time, during my childhood, when I could be happy and be who I really was. Was there such a time? I said of course there was.... every single time we went to Illinois and I was at Grandma and Grandpa's with the girls. I could laugh, play, be goofy and have fun and everyone accepted and loved me for who I really was and I was free of all went on. He said to picture one of those times in my mind, like a movie playing in my head. So I was remembering running around with Shelley and Shannon and our outdoor games and playing pool and having the Easter Egg hunts together.

He was thrilled. He'd been looking for something like that for me to tap into, to see my true self and others accepting me as is and being able to let go and have fun and feel loved. He said while going through all this bad stuff, to hang on to that movie, and go to it often, for relief from dealing with the rest, and to see over and over that movie of who Misty really is. The real Misty with none of the other stuff I was made to believe about myself there.

He said that you know, people see you as that person, the only one that doesn't, is you. And he's right. With more work and time his goal is to get me to see that true person and discard all the rest and leave it behind. He said the next few weeks are going to be really emotional for me and very hard but to keep going back to that move too, so I keep seeing the true me. We'll disassemble the rest and put it back in the past where it belongs.

It was a really really hard session, but I know it was a good step too.

-M

November 13, 2011

My Coffee Pot Goes Nuts Again....

Grrrrrrr.....

First I severely over sleep....

Then when I do get up, coffee is the first thing on my mind. So, I start the coffee pot while chatting on the phone with a friend, who called to see how I'm doing. Just before the end of the call, I turn around, and my coffee pot is spewing coffee all over the counter.......... Coffee Abuse!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I swear I wanted to bust out a straw and just drink it off the counter :P

I used my Mindness skills and when I got angry I just let it go, I mean, how would that help anything?? I stayed in the moment and with fast thinking readjusted everything and the rest of the coffee was saved. Yay!

Love thy coffee.....

-M

November 12, 2011

Learning New Things

*125 Days*

The first week I was in DBT, I was pretty lost. The concepts seemed...almost over my head. It made me a little frustrated that they didn't just "sink in". I wondered if I would be able to actually learn from it.

The second week was better, I understood a little bit of it, but it still seemed almost like a foreign language to me. Being someone that is always driven by emotion, I couldn't understand anything different. It seemed impossible.

I didn't really start to get a handle on what it all meant until Thursday or so. I kept reading and re-reading the pages and it started to click a little. Then on Friday I found a website that really breaks everything down, simplifies it, gives examples and more bits of stuff to do to get used to using each skill. Then I started having my own little 'aha' moments. Today I'm understanding the Mindfullness skills (Mod 1) better than yesterday. I'm finally grasping the concepts and how they might work and the goal of them. It's all really interesting.

Putting it into use is an entirely different thing. THAT is very hard. I am realizing I see the world as if through a tinted window, the tint being negativity, judgement, fear and anger. So everything is automatically bad in some way and so am I. Not a very good way to live.

The goal of the first module/Mindfullness skills is to change that. It's broken down into different skills to help change the way one looks at a situation. Everything from not seeing a situation through emotion, through judgement, by stepping back and seeing the situation for what it is, and not just automatically reacting by emotion. It's a lot for me to get through, my reactions/thoughts/fears have been going on SO long. But with time, I can see it helping a lot.

It's all very interesting! Will be writing more about this.
-M

To a friend...

who is going through a personal loss right now...

You are one of my very best friends and I love you dearly, I'm so sorry for the loss you are going through right now. I do know, you are a very strong, caring and wonderful woman and you will get through this and make her proud. You are doing really well with it all and I'm proud of you!

Loads of hugssssssss,
-M

November 11, 2011

Pushing Myself

*124 Days*

I've been wanting to clean my place for weeks, but I've been too down, too unmotivated, I look at it and get overwhelmed.... and I do nothing at all.

Well today I'm doing it in bits. One thing on the list at a time, then taking a break. It's the only way I think I can get it done. So far so good! Today I've done more than since the depression started. Thanks to Jess for prodding me every now and again when I take too long of a break. That has helped too. Got the garbo out, the dishes in the dishwasher and the kitchen half washed down. It is indeed a start.

I finally applied for SSI last week. I tossed this around since getting out of partial. It's a very hard decision. I really want to work, I do, but I have to look at the way I am right now, what I still have to work through, and what I am and am not capable of right now. My decision moved more quickly after seeing my reaction to trying to volunteer for that Special Olympics event. I'm still going up and down with my Bipolar, my social anxiety is terrible right now, my concentration is bad, my confidence is very bad, and I know if I try another job, there is a good chance I won't be there long. The last job I tried I only got through orientation, then on my first day of work I locked myself in my apartment for two days with panic attacks and fear. It's not good. I'm not ready to put myself in that position again.

It doesn't mean I'll never work. It means I'm not in the position to right now. Like Jess said, I worked at Aurora for five years, eventually I can do it again. I still need a LOT of therapy. I didn't get like this overnight, so I can't just snap out of it overnight either. It's taking a LOT of hard work. I'm constantly working hard on these problems, with groups, therapy and NA. Obviously what I've learned has stuck, because I've dealt with this round of depression so much better than I ever have before. No drugs, no cutting, no dramatics, no freaking out. I've been using a lot of my coping skills and really getting into my therapy assignments. It's been a big help. I'm learning during times like this, it is better to conquer day to day things in steps, instead of trying to do something as a whole and get overwhelmed and just go sleep. And I'm talking about it to a lot of people, including friends, and not just saying I'm okay.

Having Bipolar I know eventually, the cloud of depression will lift once again, it just takes time. How I deal with it while it's here is important. I have to keep pushing myself to get out of bed, find something to do, push myself out of the house and into the sunlight, even if it is only for a little while.

Jess and I made a deal, that we are going to start walking. We've set the time we will do this and will be doing it every day. On our own, both of us say we are going to do it, then don't. But together we can push ourselves to go, and keep each other going. For me the exercise will help battle the depression, get me some sunlight and get me out of the house, it will help with the weight, be healthy for me and help me get up early instead of sleeping so long. It will be really good.

Baby steps. Just gotta keep taking baby steps.

-M

November 8, 2011

Hard Therapy

*121 Days*

Had a very emotional session with Dr. Graham today. He was trying to figure out why I let myself go from doing well and being confident and positive to doing badly, thinking very negatively and being so so down on myself. He talked about it with Bille when he had went up to partial yesterday (which I told him earlier was fine to do) and they were both frustrated at my lack of forward progress and moving backwards.

I wasn't very receptive when I went into his office today. The depression has dragged me down and I feel a lot like I did when I first started going to partial. I didn't really look at him and was sort of sitting with my elbows on my knees, curled over, in a closed off/defensive way. I almost didn't even go in, because I was in a state of not wanting to talk about anything.

I had written something pretty powerful last week about how I felt in my depression, what goes on in my head, how I belittle myself, etc. I wasn't going to let him read it, but brought it with anyhow and in the end, I let him read it. Apparently it gave him a lot of insight into what was going on in my head. I'd written down a lot of the negative things I tell myself in my head, things like I won't accomplish anything, I'm stupid, I'm ugly, I don't deserve anything, etc.

He sat and thought about it a little bit and he started saying that it was like he wasn't even talking in the room with me, it was like he was talking to a child (he said no put down intended), that he could see and feel that was what was going on.

So he started asking me, what kinds of things was I told as a child. I said a lot of things.... He started saying all sorts of things, asking if they'd been said to me, and they had. He asked by who. He asked when these things happened did I ever receive any reassurance or love after? Did anyone hurt me and say I'm doing this out of love, etc. He asked if I got enough hugs and love? He asked if my Dad protected me when these things were going on? I love my Dad very much, but he wasn't around when these things were happening and didn't know most of it went on and when I'd try to tell him he didn't believe me.

So he said, I basically had no one to trust, was alone with it all and was told many things I shouldn't have been told. As he was naming all these things off, I could picture myself as a kid, going through these things and hearing these things said to me that ended up permanent in my mind and following me. I felt like there was no one I could trust because in some way either people I trusted hurt me or let me down when I needed them.

I ended up feeling so much of that anguish I felt as a child that I held my head in my hands and just cried. I didn't expect him to get that far into my head and it was like hearing someone else say the things I say to myself all the time. Being the amazing therapist that he is and in total surprise to me, he set his notebook down, came and sat on the couch by me and wrapped his arms around me and just let me cry.

Like someone finally noticing that the little girl was hurting and comforting that little girl and telling her she was loved and not the bad girl that everyone kept saying she was. God, I just cried and cried. When I could, I asked him, why did people do this to me? What did I do so wrong? He said that I didn't do anything wrong, that it was them, not me. That I did nothing to deserve the things said to me.

I don't even know how long I sat there and just cried and felt all this sorrow and pain, but it was so good to trust someone with it. To have someone understand ME and acknowledge that what I was feeling was justified, that what was said, was really said to me and it was believed. That I wasn't a lier, that I wasn't making things up, that I wasn't exaggerating. That it was real and finally someone understood and I was allowed to vent it with a person who wouldn't judge....or say anything bad to me.

It's been hard the rest of the day, because my mind is still back there, going through things that were said and things that I felt, but I'm handling it. I've never had a therapy session like this before. Where I actually trusted the therapist enough to acknowledge how things really made me feel.

I know it was really good, but also very difficult. I'm glad I went today.

-M

November 5, 2011

Total Fail

It went like this....

I got home last night and started thinking about the event. Then I started thinking about how many people would be there, and how I wouldn't know anyone and how I might have a panic attack and where would I go if I did have one and what if the exits were far away and I'd be like 50 minutes from home, nowhere near my comforting apartment and what if the Vistaril didn't help and what if I fell or did something stupid, in front of all these strangers and ...... I ended up having a full fledged panic attack in my apartment.

So, I didn't go.

I'm mad and I'm frustrated and trying not to be angry with myself. The woman running the DBT group said as we go through the weeks it will help with this and i really hope it does, because I'm tired of stupid panic attacks and feeling like I'm going to die or have a heart attack.

It's driving me crazy.

I'm proud of myself for getting through it on my own but angry it ruined what was supposed to be a good day.

-M

November 4, 2011

The List...

...is made. Cleaning day it is. I've been down lately and haven't done much around the house....so...now it is a mess. *sigh*

Once it is a mess it's the .... there is so much to do, I get overwhelmed, and do nothing.

Thanks to some tips from a person in chat today, I am armed with ways to get around that and get to cleaning!
Wish me luck!

-M

November 3, 2011

Getting nervous....

It started yesterday. Ruminating about what will go on this weekend. Worrying already. Playing out scenarios in my head, etc. For a bit of time today I thought about canceling. But I can't do that, for me as well as the fact that I said I would do this.

I'm volunteering at a Special Olympics event out of town on Saturday. I'm also playing photographer. I think it will be a lot of fun. I just have to push myself to do it. To just go. I'll have my meds with me, including my Vistaril (aka: help me now anxiety med), and I'm going to do Dr. G's style of meditation the night before and the morning of to help me relax. I should be just fine.

-M

Doco on SA

Ran into a documentary on social anxiety on youtube. Here's the first part, with a link underneath to the list of all six parts of the documentary. It's really good and does a great job of explaining what it is like. I hide my social anxiety fairly well but it gives you an idea what goes on inside.....torture :(




The rest here

-M

November 2, 2011

This sucks!

Coming to terms with having this borderline thing sucks. Reading all the in depth descriptions of the symptoms is like reading a book on myself. Seeing the words and relating it to things I've done and people I've hurt, how much I hate myself and look at myself as garbage, I've done and said just unbelievable things. It makes me feel like I've become my mother. It makes me feel terrible. She said this was going to be hard, she wasn't joking.

11/2/11

*115 Days*

Even though I've been diagnosed BPD, I hadn't really done much reading on it. I don't know if it is because I'm still in denial or what. The health professionals in my life (ie: Dr. Amante, Billi, Dr. Graham, etc.) kept telling me that I am a poster child for it but I still didn't get it.

My old therapist started a group on DBT in my area, which is amazing because it is a rural area where we miss out on a lot of things offered in the city. She had my name at the top of the list for this group and I agreed to do it. When I first agreed I didn't even realize it was a DBT group. I've heard of DBT and many said it was good. Had no idea I would end up in it.

I went to the first group yesterday. By the time I walked out of the group two hours later, not only was I convinced I have BPD, but I really do think this group is going to help me a lot. It does seem like it is going to be very very hard, but I am going to really give it my all and see if it helps.

I met all the BPD symptoms.... frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment....a pattern of intense unstable relationships....unstable self-image...impulsiveness that can be self-destructive...suicidal or self-destructive behavior....mood swings...chronic feelings of emptiness...intense or inappropriate anger...a distorted sense of reality...

It really took me by surprise. It shouldn't have, my mom and grandmother have it as well. I haven't read up to see if it's genetic or learned or both, but my mom's side sure has a lot of it. I can see these same symptoms in my mother clear as day.

We got binders with all the paperwork for week 1 in it and reading through what will change seems like really hard work. I already worry if I am up to the challenge, but I want to try and see what happens. It has me very excited. Just knowing there are others that think the way I do is amazing. I thought it all was just me....

Writing some things from the homework in here, sorry if it's hard for some to read, but it's just who I've been....

So many things I do fit into this disorder.....
-Ways I relate to frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment:
I was the one who said I wanted the divorce but then I was the one who begged him to stay together
Agreeing with people when I don't really agree
Threatening to harm myself when my HS boyfriend broke up with me

-Pattern of relationships
Jump into them without much thought or smother the person
Let him go out with his friends and then being pissed he isn't home with me
Got married on impulse without really making sure he wanted to get married

-Unstable self image/How I see myself
That I'm not talented and my photography isn't any good
I'm ugly and fat
I'm stupid and can't do anything right
I don't know who I really am and who I want to be
Change often what I want to do with my life
Changed many times what I think about something
Changed many times the things that I like
Even changed the way I talk or the expressions I've used

-Ways I am impulsive
Wasting money
Buying things I don't need
Eating tons of food when I'm not hungry
Cutting
Moving from one place to another
Quitting jobs
Eloping in Vegas
Jumping on a plane to AUS without having a job lined up
Do many things w/o thinking them through

-Self Destructive behavior
Drugs/Alcohol
Swallowing bottles of pills
Cutting
Binge eating
Sleeping with someone on impulse
Arguing over stupid things
Trying to be right all the time
Isolating from everyone
Not taking care of myself
Smoking
Not taking my meds
Putting a gun in my mouth
Picking fights
Breaking or damaging things

-Mood Swings
Mood can go from good to bad in an instant
From feeling confident to hating myself quickly
From laughing to crying/raging
Can quickly get very angry and blow up

-Chronic feelings of emptiness
All the time, especially when alone
Like a deep pitted numbness
Thinking things will never get any better
Believing I am a failure

-Intense or inappropriate anger
I get angry over the stupidest things
Mostly geared at myself but not always
I crave to be perfect and when I make a mistake I am very angry towards myself
Scream at the top of my lungs
Break or hit things
Self injury
Saying awful things to people
Have ruined relationships/friendships

-Distorted sense of reality
My reality most of the time is wrapped in negativity, paranoia and fear
Constantly worried something bad will happen
I disassociate and sort of go into my head and close myself off

Sounds like fun eh? NOT.

Some of these things I didn't realize I was doing until I was writing it all out on the homework assignment. I tried to be as detailed as I could and really thought about each answer thoroughly. Thought of specific examples, etc.

I figure if I'm going to do this group, I'm going to do it to the fullest of my ability.

-M