Wednesday, June 27, 2012

1 step forward, 2 steps back

I seem to be struggling a bit at the moment. I have spent the past year in therapy/recovery and as of last week it has all come to an end. No more therapy or hospital or groups. I am now officially on my own again except for the care of my GP. I knew it was coming and I did try and prepare myself but when the time came to say good-bye, It was just a lot harder than I expected it to be.
I made a point of being aware that it would be difficult and forcing myself to be pro-active by pushing myself to do what’s good for me. But, I’m afraid, things don’t seem to be going to plan in that aspect. In fact,… I seem to have regressed.

I don’t want to go into all the illness details of what is happening, but the end result is me having a very difficult time leaving my apartment once again. And this is so disheartening because I worked so hard to overcome this problem. And now I’m really disappointed in myself.

I can’t explain to people how this social phobia/anxiety/agoraphobia thing works. You just wouldn’t understand it unless you lived it. But even though I am trying really hard, I just can’t leave my apartment and be a part of society. In short,… I find it just too overwhelming.

I did try this week. I contacted a few of the girls I met in group and said I’d like to make plans to get together with them. They are really great women and I know it would be really good for me to have such nice (and understanding) friends. We bonded so well in group and I know they are caring and they do have an idea of my “issues” so they do understand.

But,… It’s just so difficult to actually leave this apartment to see them. At the time that I make plans with friends or family, I fully intend to keep them. I even look forward to spending time with the person I’ve made arrangements with. But when the actual time comes,… I just can’t do it,… I just can’t leave this damn apartment.

It’s a sad and lonely disorder to have. Because I know what always happens in the end. It always ends up with me making a last-minute call to cancel. Which seems to be acceptable once or twice, but after numerous times people understandably start to get annoyed. This ends up in hard feelings and eventually,.. the loss of that friendship. People don’t mind meeting up with me here in my apartment a few times but over time they get bored and move on.
After all of my therapy I have a much better understanding of why I am this way. But unfortunately, overcoming the phobia is proving to be so much more difficult than I anticipated. Mental Illness really is full on mental agony sometimes. It has robbed me of so much. And left me with such guilt. On days (like today) when all I can accomplish is to eat and have a shower,… I feel guilty and think I’m not worthy. And that I’m letting all the people down who have supported me over the past year. And I get scared that they, too, will leave when they see such little progress.

And yet,… I really am trying. That’s what makes this illness/disorder so frustrating. Sometimes I try so hard yet I still fail. Luckily there are times I do really, really well and it’s these times that keep encouraging me to struggle on. Which I will continue to do. I did manage to get out for 20 minutes today. And that felt like climbing a mountain. But I forced myself and I did do it. So, I guess I have to hold on to the small accomplishments.

Again, this blog entry isn’t all hearts and roses,… but then again, neither is mental illness and some days you just get down about it all and need to vent.

Monday, June 18, 2012

fighting hard to stay "up"

It’s been a bit of a week with me.

Monday I went to pick up my new kitty  “Maurice BaBa O’Riley”  He’s a 1 yr old male ~ all black ~ and cute as a button. But like all kitties, he’s curious and friendly and BUSY! I love him,… Maggie? Well the jury is still out on that one. As the Queen would say,…. “I’m not amused”  What possessed me to get another cat? Insomnia. Yup,… sleepless nights on the Internet trolling Kijiji and falling in love with free kitties. Guess I figured if I’m going to be awake all damn night I may as well have a playmate.

I don’t know what is causing this insomnia. I have suffered with it more or less my whole adult life. But over the past year it has definitely gotten worse. One reason may be the very obvious. I’m no longer on all those sedating drugs. Now that I’m more or less “clean & sober.” (I say more or less as I’m still on my very limited prescribed medications). Another reason may be all the changes I’ve been going through this past year. All the therapy,… it does tend to play havoc with your mind. And with me,… It seems to have the frustrating side-effect of not being able to sleep because I lay in bed and my mind just won’t turn off. I’m told it’s a lot to do with my GAD (General anxiety disorder) and a bit to do with the emotions, and feelings the therapy is drudging up. Whatever the reason,… It’s driving me mad and definitely playing havoc with my sleep schedule. In short I don’t have a schedule. I sleep when my mind allows it.

Therapy,… My last therapy session is this Tuesday. I am not comfortable with this at all. The group sessions especially. I have made many bonds with the other woman and I know I am going to feel a huge hole once the group stops this week. I am very worried that I will slip backwards. I am already feeling anxious and sad that it has come to an end and I’m afraid that those feelings will get worse. It’s something I am aware of though so hopefully I can be mindful and work at not letting myself go back to where I was before. My therapy has become a very safe and comforting place for me and I’m really worried about not having it there anymore after next week. I feel like I say this all the time but,.. Baby steps forward,… one day at a time,…

And of course Saturday was the 9 year anniversary of my Dads passing. (and today being Fathers Day) You would think it would get easier with each passing year but somehow I still get sad and quiet on the day. I don’t think you ever get comfortable with your parents just not being around anymore. It’s a huge loss and you always feel it on all the ‘occasions’.

Anyway, I know this blog entry is kind of all over the place but that’s sort of where my head is right now. (Lack of sleep definitely has it’s consequences). I wanted to write,… I just seem to be finding it a bit of a struggle trying to sort my thoughts out lately. This I’m afraid is the best I can do.