Tag Archives: progress

supported accommodation.

So I’ve decided that, at least for a bit, I’m going to alternate between posts of where I am right now and posts from before. The last one was obviously from October and times have changed a lot since then. I’m in a way better place and right now isn’t the worst.

Right now, I’m lying in my own little garden at the back of my own little flat. It’s sunny and I look like the 80s happened all over me. I have some wine, a good book and a blanket. And I’m preparing my bee grenade. It’s summery and nice and I’m in a good mood. Today is a good day, although I am a little bored. So this is me trying to be productive. After this I have something really important and even more productive to do so I’ve gotta get on it. But I’m going to try keep to my blog for a bit as I think it’s important for me to focus my energies on creating things as well as just absorbing them. There was a long time when I stopped creating. I used to write in my journal everyday, blog a few times a week, sketch, draw and create digital art and it mostly just stopped. I think the only thing I created in like a year was like a picture of a dying rose and a girl in tears. I guess all consuming, unhealthy relationships which turn your life upside down do that to you.

Things have really changed though. Firstly, I love my little flat. I’m so house proud it is unreal. Maybe I’ll do a post of pictures in a bit, but right now, my camera and laptop are inside and the sun is happening. It took ages to get this flat sorted, but now I’m in a self contained, supported little home. And it has rooms. Multiple rooms. And a hall. I lined all my shoes up in the hall so that everyone who visits will see how awesome my shoes are. And I have nice, colourful things all around. And I like to put flowers on my little dining table that I don’t think I have ever used.

Supported housing is weird. I had housing issues for a while, so I organised seeing my psychiatrist at the CRT (previously the CMHT, now the Community Recover Team) who referred me to the social work part of the team. It took weeks, but I got this awesome social worker called Helen. She took one look at me and said that council housing was probably not a good first step, but that I should probably wind up in low support accommodation. Then there was a suicide attempt, but that’ll but in a different, from before post, and she changed her recommendation to high support. I was put at the top of the list and then it was a waiting game.

Anyway, she left and I wound up with a new social worker called Bonnie. A flat came up in medium support and she recommended I go for it, so I did and here I am a couple of months later. Bonnie’s left too now, so I’ve got a new care co-ordinator called Shagufta who’s an occupational therapist. I don’t really know what they do, but hopefully she won’t leave and hopefully she’s nice. I’m meeting her on May 23rd so I guess we’ll wait and see.

Back to the flat though. It’s nice. Its on the ground floor, at the back of the building, so I can see the garden through my windows. It’s in a block of five flats, all supported for people with mental health problems. I’ve not met anyone from my block yet, though I’ve seen two of them. One is really hot and I saw him this morning all pretty and in the hall and topless. He knows he’s pretty though and that annoyed me. The other guy is really old and wears a bowler hat. He lives in the flat next door so I can sometimes see him through the windows at the front of the block. He does not look like he’s having any fun. Trust. Oh and there’s these two brothers, one of whom lives here, who always leave the back gate open and I see in the garden all the time. They walk past my windows and look in like the alien from signs when they’re filming the kids birthday party and it comes out the grass. Creepy. I’m sure they’re not. Maybe I just need net curtains. But then I won’t see the daisies.

At first, I was really apprehensive about the supported aspect. I think this was mainly due to fear of the unknown. I mean, I know how to cook and clean and all that, so I didn’t know what help they could be. It’s not like they can stop me self harming or prevent me from doing any damage to myself. Actually though, I really think it’s for the best. I have to floating support workers, a main one called Angela and another one called Miuri. Angela is a bit odd. She’s got a kinda fleeting thought process that she likes to speak out load, but she’s nice and is actually really helpful. She comes to my CPAs, doctors appointments and things, helps me sort out bills etc., and makes sure that I’m comfortable, safe and doing ok. I don’t think she can tell if I’m safe or doing ok, but she can help make sure I’m comfy. Like if something breaks, she helps me out. I like her a lot, even though she’s a bit ditzy. And she swears a lot, which I like, but she always reprimands herself for. Miuri and me mostly just chat. We talk about cooking and hair and boys and I teach her recipes and things. She’s such a sweetie. I think they’ve only seen me freak out once, even though I’ve freaked out way more than that, I just don’t tell them. Maybe I should, but I don’t see how that’d help. I duno.

The one big downside to all of this is that I’m flat out broke all the time. Bills on your own are hard. At uni, everything was split six ways, but all alone, it’s not. And I’m still waiting for my PIP assessment so god knows if my income will improve at all. Benefits is not an easy life, but I’m still pretty unstable, I’m still a student and I’ve still got a long way to go, so no one seems to be thinking a job so soon is the way I should be going. I’m on housing benefit, ESA, council tax benefit (though I still have to pay them £15 pound a month – you’re not exempt unless you’re on PIP) and it’s still hardly enough to get by. Money bums me out.

But do you know what doesn’t bum me out? Where I live. Not just the flat either. I love the area. It’s got a proper community vibe. There’s a lot of social housing around here. Lots of estates, lots of streets of council houses. All around this one, proper high street. You can achieve really good chicken. Like painfully good. And it’s got really nice shops and things. I love it here. I don’t want to move, though I’ll have to in a year or two. Supported housing isn’t forever, you either move to higher, lower or no support after a one or two year tenancy.

All in all, life isn’t exactly easy, but things have really improved. I love putting little decorations up and making myself a little home. Living alone can be hard, but for me, I think it’s worth the effort. I don’t have to hide away, deal with unwanted advances from housemates, feel like I’m excluded r from my own home. This is now my home and I love it. I couldn’t ask for more. I can have who I want over, when I want. Or not. It’s great.

I’m lucky in some ways. A lot of people need social housing and right now, there’s a social housing crisis in London. I’m not lucky to have been put in the position where I got accommodation so quickly, but a lot of people aren’t deemed vulnerable enough to even get emergency accommodation in the borough. The right to buy scheme means that there are less council houses ever year, affordable housing and local authority housing isn’t being built quick enough and people wind up waiting in the system for years before they can get any help all. It’s pretty fucked. From here, once my tenancy is up, I’ll be one of the top priorities for council or LHA flats, and although I’m seriously grateful for that, I can’t help but feel horrible for all the people that don’t get the same opportunities because they’re not “sick” enough or don’t have children or haven’t yet been made street homeless, but are waiting on pending evictions. The system is broken and, although it has worked for me, the housing crisis is out of control. I’ve been unlucky enough to be prioritised, but it just gives me guilt for all the people that are so much more unlucky that they aren’t.

Fucking welfare cuts. Fucking welfare cap. Fucking Conservative bastards making those with hard lives have to fight all that much harder. Fucking Atos and their stupid assessments. Britain should be proud of its welfare state, not undermining it at every chance. And don’t even get me started on NHS cuts. The affects of that in my foundation trust for mental health have been uncontrollably damaging. But that’ll be for another post.

I’ll get off my soap box now. I’m going to go back to reading a beautiful book (The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman) and listening to some beautiful music (The Blank Project by Neneh Cherry and produced by Four Tet).

Hope this wasn’t super boring.

Lovelove x.

 

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Filed under Benefits, bpd, CRT, general, Housing, life, music, Progress, recovery, Welfare

skyrim.

So I thought I’d maybe do an opening post on where I am now. There is only one real answer to that, and that is Skyrim. I know I know I am super late because it’s so old now and everyone’s already played it yarda yarda etc., but I wanted to do a post about how video games can really help me improve my mental health. They are obviously not for everyone (only for those of us who are slightly more inclined towards the geekier side of things), but since moving, Skyrim has been a seriously special thing to me.

I used to game a lot when I was little, but I had this absolutely horrendous, abusive boyfriend when I went to university who essentially told me I was rubbish for doing it because I wasn’t paying him enough attention. He’s a douche and waaaay out of the picture. But anyway, by the time that was over I was totally locked in anorexia so gaming was still a really difficult thing to get into again. It was only once I gained weight and recovered from anorexia that I was able to game again. I started out with some old classics like Metal Gear Solid and moved on to Tomb Raider Survivor, Uncharted and some Resistance: Fall of Man. I found these super cathartic as I was so engaged with something else, visually, physically and audibly, that I could escape my own feelings and emotions and put them to one side whilst distressing emotions within me calmed down. However, the situations I found myself in meant gaming became harder and harder. I installed Baldur’s Gate on my iPad (if any of you are old and naff enough to remember this) so I could game on the go, but my life was really hectic.

There are other was to calm down your emotions obviously. I could have a nice bath, or read some Neil Gaiman, but, you know, I could beat some dragons to death with a war-hammer. For me, it’s the dragons that work every time.

See, I find books difficult to engage in when I’m stressed. It’s uses like, one sense, and that just isn’t distracting enough, and if I’m in a bad place, the last thing I want to do is stare at my body. I don’t hate it, but like basically any girl living in a world in which unrealistic expectations are expected of or bodies, I don’t think “wowzas – what a hottie.” I need to find something with a story that can engulf me, something complicated enough to engage me in puzzle solving, and something beautiful enough to stare at for hours. Enter Skyrim.

Since moving, I’ve had no internet. I’ve not been able to binge watch tv series till I’m blue in the face. I’ve not been able to sit and let something mildly entertaining wash over me. I think this has both pros and cons. I find it incredibly easy to let my emotions run wild when I’m just casually watching something, and I also find that the background noise has become a part of my ritual for self-harming. Stupid, but true. Nothing grabs me enough. When I first moved, I watched a lot of shit T.V. – me and Parking Mad became good friends I won’t lie. I’d watch reruns of T.V. shows I hated on Dave at three am. No fun for anyone.

One evening, I had my brother and a mate over. He’d previously given me Skyrim (the legendary addition with all the DLC already on the disk) and that night he installed it. I’d like to say the next day I was suckered in, but that’d be a lie. I spent the whole day not sleeping and ended up watching Dirty Weekenders in France (the one with Richard E. Grant), under a duvet, on my sofa, eating Super Noodles. The next day, Skyrim happened.

You start the game, pick your gender, race, hair colour, makeup (fuck make up – my Wood Elf has war paint bitches), spend a while giving them some sort of maybe acceptable face and giving her some kick ass curves then off you go – in to the world of Skyrim.

Skyrim is part RPG, part soap. There’s like a main storyline involving dragons and shouting and all this crazy stuff. I’ve been playing it for over 75 hours and I still don’t really no where that’s going except for the fact that, at some point, imma have to merk some proper badman head dragon with all my shouting. I get most of my fun in the side quests. I just finished the Thieves’ Guild side quest (which took many hours) and now I’m really good at pickpocketing, lock picking and being super stealthy. I am Queen of the sneak attack. I play the longest game in the longest way. I hide, shoot a boss with an arrow, run away till I’m hidden, then go back and do it again. See, the Thieves’ Guild had lost it’s reputation as being proper hard thieves, and I had to restore it back to its immoral street cred. Now I am MASTER OF THE THIEVES! This has nothing to do with the main story, it was just fun.

It isn’t just big side quests. There are miscellaneous, teeny tiny quests too. Like finding someone a book. One time, I had to find three, flawless amethysts for this lizard dude so he could make an engagement ring for his wife (as per lizard customs obvs). And you can buy a house! You can buy a few houses, but because I have the DLC stuff, I’m saving my p so I can build a fucking huge yard once I get the 100,000 gold achievement, so my one house is pretty shit. It’s full of cobwebs and hay, but fuck that. Imma build a mansion and then get married and adopt some children. Because you can do that in Skyrim. You can get married, pimp your house out and adopt some kids. Complete and utter soap opera drama. Except every now and then, a dragon pops up you have to deal with. My weapon of choice here is my Nightingale bow and my elven war hammer. Beat them to the ground and absorb that dragon soul init fam.

It is so addictive and so engaging. It’s actually hard to write this post because I want to play it more now and I know my Mum is sleeping over tonight to watch lots of Avatar (the last air bender variety – don’t get twisted). I only have five hours to play it and I need to get dressed and stuff. Urgh. People get in the way of my Skyrim dreams.

But back to my main point. Yes, I admit I am a bit of a geek, but it’s one of the best ways to distract myself from my own distressing emotions. I get to engage in all the ridiculous lives of made up characters and I temporarily forget my own ridiculous life. Yes it is an avoidance thing, but in all honesty, distraction as a technique is better than cutting yourself in a moment of severe, emotional distress. You can deal with the problems once you’ve got your emotions back under control and through the use of emotional regulation skills like building mastery (a.k.a. getting shit you find hard to do done, even if it’s the washing up) so you feel like you’re achieving and making progress forward. It’s so much easier to do once you’ve let your emotions calm down a little by engulfing yourself in this mentalist world of ridiculously silly fun. And also, you can not play video games when you are off your face trashed on Valium. You just get shit at it, so it’s a really good way of distracting from addictive thoughts as well. Honestly, Skyrim has been so good for my mental health that I’d recommend anyone going through a rough patch to get themselves involved in some seriously addictive gaming.

Just be wary. You may end up forgoing sleep all together. Then you’re not really addressing your problems, you just play it till 10am then sleep all day, the play it again. Avoiding avoidance is something DBT tries to encourage. My support worker hates me because I’m never awake. Sometimes, you have to plan to not play it so you can be awake. I had to take a week off to be productive, be social and have a bit of a life. I was a little sad. No lie.

So this is what I’ve been up to recently. I can be more detailed in how I got here. Or not. You decide.
And remember – you have been warned.

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Filed under Addiction, bad day, bpd, coping strategies, general, life, Progress, recovery, self harm, therapy, Video games

differences and change.

So it’s been a while since I last posted and a lot has gone on. I’ve written a lot of posts and I’ve written, lots of diary entrances when I haven’t had access to computers, but like, after being kicked out, evicted, sponging off my best friend, being dumped, gaining a social worker, a suicide attempt, hospitalisation, running away from hospital, a lot of time under the HTT, losing a social worker and gaining a new one, graduating DBT group and finishing individual therapy, completing level one addiction treatment at Turning Point, more time under the HTT, completing an Intuitive Recovery course with Turning Point (getting me a level one qualification in health and social care as well!), finally getting my own flat at the end of March (all be it through the council and it’s medium mental health supported) and yesterday I finally got internet! It’s been really bloody hectic but I have some posts. I don’t know whether I should even post them as it’d be backdating so much. Or if anyone would read this. Or if I should start a new blog. This began as an eating disorder recovery blog and has definitely changed direction quite a lot, but I’m trying really hard to build up a life outside of my mental health problems, and maybe this would tie me to them, or maybe this could help me see how far I’ve really come. I duno. Maybe it could help others who have gone through similar stuff. Maybe that’s just arrogance.

If there are any readers out there, lemme know what you think.

Lovelove x.

(ps. Sorry I haven’t been keeping up with everyone. I’ve not had internet access and I’ve gone through a lot the past few months. I feel rubbish. I hope you’re all ok x.)

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Filed under Addiction, bpd, eating disorder, Hospital, Housing, HTT, life, NHS, recovery, self harm

back again

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Filed under bpd, coping strategies, eating disorder, IMPART, life, recovery, therapy

crazy 24 hours.

Last night was really bad. I tried to distract myself, but it didn’t work for long.

I duno what flipped in me, but I flipped and got really agitated and distressed. I wound up on the phone to the HTT at midnight or summin with a bottle of aspirin and the full intent to die. Because they’re in and out of A&E at night, they had bad signal and promised to call me back in 10 minutes. It took me about 3 minutes to decide I couldn’t just sit, so I self-harmed pretty badly down my already gnawed up arms. Nothing that needed A&E, only steri-strips. That lasted about 45 minutes till I called them back again and there was no answer. So I then called the Crisis line, which was also useless and just burst into tears until they found someone to connect me to. He talked to me for about 45 minutes and persuaded me that yes I should take my meds rather than try to hoard them and I calmed a little, but still felt unsafe.

I got the Brother to come and sit with me. I told him how I felt honestly, even that I wanted to just die because it all burnt so much. I think that was brave of me. He made me some apple squash, put on Time Trumpet and watched it in bed with me and Afiq (my teddy). I even took my zopiclone, though it didn’t work so well. We got through the whole season before I felt sleepy, but he left me falling asleep to the Armando Iannucci Shows. The Brother was good and picked things that made me giggle and lifted my mood up a lot. He looks after me better than anyone else in the world. He doesn’t cry or tell me how he doesn’t understand or ask questions. He accepts it and goes “Right – let’s do something nice together right this second. For as long as it takes.” I need that when I’m feeling so desperately lost and low. I can’t find a way out myself, so asking me anything and expecting positive outcomes is ridiculous because I can’t find the answers.

I woke up not too drowsy and a little bit more hungry than I have been the past few days. I think the initial side effects of the zopiclone are wearing off a bit now. I was able to eat breakfast, a cookie and a big lunch, though I feel too sick to eat right now so I duno how dinner will fare up. I was in a foul mood though. I was angry. Like really angry. I was fuming at the HTT for not making it better and not taking me seriously. Sometimes I think I should just kill myself so people will finally believe I’m not making all this up. I get paranoid that everyone thinks I make it up so they don’t listen to me or take anything I say seriously. Then I start to think that I am making it all up and I’m fine, so I need to make myself less ok. Then I realise I’m not ok in the first place if I’m thinking of doing serious harm in order to get other people and myself to believe me. It’s a cycle of thought with no clear exit. Anyway, I was planning on shouting at them and telling them that they don’t care and don’t listen and don’t understand, but I managed to keep myself marginally acceptable when they came. I was argumentative and rude (which I regret), but I didn’t tell them how much I fucking hate them or anything. I don’t even hate them. I just felt like they didn’t care, which made me hate them at that moment in time.

Keeping my anger in didn’t last long though. I’ve been getting angry lately that the Pa wants to walk Juno all the time. We share care for her. He gives her breakfast and a quick morning walk, I give her a long daytime walk and lunch, the Ma feeds her dinner and the Pa gives her a quick evening walk. This works out well for me because generally, I’m home alone during the days, so I can walk her whenever and we get lots of bonding time. Granted, now the clocks have gone back, the walks will literally have to be earlier, but I have trouble motivating myself to do anything for hours once I wake up so I generally walk her between 3-6pm (now it’ll have to be 2-4pm. Fucking daylight savings). The Pa has some time off work because it’s half-term for the Ma and it was Eid on Friday so she had that off too. He’s kept asking me if he could walk her or saying “I’m thinking about walking Juno now” at like 1pm, whilst I’m probably still in pajamas. I’ve got it into my head that he hates that she’s not his dog and his dog only. I think he’s trying to steal her from me. My walks with Juno are one of my favorite parts of the day because I have music and my pup and autumnal weather, so this has been really getting to me. Juno looks after me and I love her and I don’t want her to stop loving me (some next level abandonment issues. I mean, come one – She’s a dog. She loves everyone). Anyway, I went downstairs to give her a hug and she ignored me calling and just sat by the Pa. Now I know she’s a dog and has no bad intentions, but this really really hurt me anyway. I then told the Pa he could walk her and he’d won and he’d got her all to himself now. I then ran upstairs and started hitting and biting and ripping etc. Obviously I had to go upstairs because I didn’t want Juno to feel stress in the household as it would upset her.

Anyway, the Brother came to talk to me and suddenly I was devastated. I was crying about how no one loved me and the Pa had stolen my dog from me and I had no one to care for me and even my dog can’t love me and blah blah blah. I was angry and devastated and confused. Mostly, I was just way too emotional. The Pa came into my room and I shouted and cursed and cried some more. Standard. He told me to just hug my puppy, but I told him she doesn’t love me anymore and I didn’t want to be rejected again etc. You know the drill. So I told him off, cried, and kicked him out my room. He threatened to send Juno to Battersea because he “doesn’t want a dog to tear a family apart” (which I think is a bit dramatic, but I know I was being dramatic too). I told him that I love her too much to let her go. It was a bit of a scene.

Once left alone to my own devices, feeling like death and wanting to self-harm, I checked the Daily Puppy (I know I keep going on about it, but still), just to see whether they’d accepted or rejected her. I did not expect to see my beautiful Juno staring at me as the puppy of the day 27th October 2012! All of a sudden, my mood changed entirely. I was ecstatic. I called the Pa and ran downstairs with my laptop to show him. I read all the comments, told everyone how many biscuits she had, started scouring twitter for all the Juno related tweets, ‘liked’ the Daily Puppy facebook page and shared their picture of Juno and commented on it and linked her profile on my page and was just really happy. As of right now, over 1,000 people on Facebook have ‘liked’ her picture and 54 have shared it, she has 1,611 biscuits and 52 comments on her Daily Puppy page. People are even putting her on Pintrest. I got major excitement. Bouncing off the walls excitement. We went on an extra long hour and a bit walk today so I could show my whole neighbourhood the puppy of the day. She’s a local celebrity, even though no one recognised her. I’m generally not someone to show off their pets like this, but with Juno I just feel so compelled. She’s too adorable.

Suddenly, I love everyone and everything and today is fantastic and I complied with the HTT treatment and took my medications in front of them. I promised I’d call again if I have another minor crisis or need to self-harm again tonight. The CMHT Psychiatrist (who will, at some point, be just the Psychiatrist, but I’m taking a transition period to not confuse people) emailed me this morning and told me I should go to the local Community Drug and Alcohol Team (CDAT) for help with my Valium issues. I emailed him back to tell him it was stupid this morning. I already have four teams involved in my care – adding another seems a bit much and a bit confusing. IMPART + CMHT + EDU + HTT + CDAT = waaaay to many acronyms. Plus, I’ve already been working on it myself to get off it. Then this evening I talked to the HTT about it and now I’m going to go tomorrow. I have to be there at 9:30am to get seen quickly as they only offer drop in sessions and the later you get there, the longer the wait, which sucks, but they’re in the same building as the HTT so I can kill two birds with one stone in that trip. Plus an extra hours walk is an extra hours worth of headphones so it’s not so bad. Still, at least group is cancelled this week so I don’t have that to cope with as well as all this other treatment malarky.

What is rubbish though is that, with the HTT coming twice a day (due to my tablet hoarding compulsions), I had to miss dog training today. The Pa can show me it all tomorrow so I can catch up, but I hate missing it, but it’s only one class and its session two, which is the same one I saw when I visited the group to see if it’d be good for Juno. I reckon I can figure it out better with the HTT by this time next week (if they’re even still seeing me twice daily. To be fair, if they are, I’d prefer them to come evenings anyway because I can’t got out in the dark as it is, but I can get them to come earlier).

This might sound all positive, but I’m not sure it is. Right now, I’m less excited. More lonely and sad. That’s probably because I just had some Valium though. The problem is, as I’m lowering my Valium intake or as more life stresses build up (having to repay my Professional Careers Development Loan, broke without a job for instance), my personal life gets more complicated and painful or my duloxetine needs to be upped or for whatever mixture of reasons, my emotions are becoming increasingly volatile. Both in a good, and bad way, they are getting more and more intense. More and more difficult to manage.

I’m getting more obsessive over little things too. Right now, I’m obsessively trying to decide between an iPhone 5 or a Galaxy SIII. I’m also obsessing over the Daily Puppy thing. It’s not like I mind being obsessive, but I find it hard to do anything else. Especially the things I need to do (like sort out how to pay off this loan and try to change my student bank account to Co-op so all my accounts are in one bank, thus easier to manage and getting the Psychiatrist to sort out my freedom pass etc.). I look over the same webpages again and again and I can’t not do it. Everything else becomes secondary to whatever I’m obsessing over. I’m also starting to get hyped up about my iPad 4 turning up (I had a major breakdown in Sainsbury’s, so even though it was against store policy, they gave me a refund so I pre-ordered the new one. Not a mini one though. I don’t want a mini one). I’m counting down days. Literally. It’s arriving on Friday and I cannot contain myself. Then on Monday I can upgrade my phone and well…. that’s its own minefield. These things cost money I shouldn’t spend, but I figure I can deal with it at some point in the future.

I’m also getting more irritable. Little things are triggering anger, rages and hate. Like the fact that it’s half term and the Fam are all around and I get irritated when they speak to me because this is my time and if they try to hard, I get angry and hate them. Of course, they are all trying too hard because the Psychologist told them about my increasing level of risk and stash of painkillers. I’m self-harming more and more, and it’s getting progressively worse. None of this is really that good. I’m not trying to stop it either. I don’t know how to and even if I did, I’m not sure I have the motivation for change. I’m acting as if I’m ready to change. I’m taking all the right steps and trying to do what I’m asked sometimes,  but if they don’t watch me take my meds, I hoard them. I’m not trying to cut down on self-harm. I’m not giving the HTT my stash of pills like they keep asking. I’m perfectly aware of the fact that it’s dangerous to have them there as I tend to act on impulse, but I want to keep that option open and I know that if I gave them away, I’d just buy more the same day and not tell them.

So I don’t know if I’m doing good or not. I don’t know if I’m being compliant with treatment or not. I don’t know what I want to get out of it or if I’m ready to change. I don’t even know if I even need help or not. If I’m acting or I really feel like this. I don’t know what to do or if I’m doing everything wrong.

All I know is that no one hears me screaming and I’m desperate to find a way of letting the whole world know how much my insides burn so that someone will understand and make it better. I don’t even think that’s possible.

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Filed under CDAT, CMHT, home treatment team, IMPART, Juno, life, recovery

reading books.

I can’t really read. I mean, obviously I can actually read pretty well. I can look at different letters in various patterns and most of the time, I get what they mean. I just really struggle when it comes to actual reading. I start a sentence with the full intention of finishing it, but a few words in and my mind starts to wander and before I know it, I’m having fantastical, life changing conversations with people in my head. Sure I may still be moving my eyes along the lines and over the words, but I don’t take it in. I can ‘read’ pages and pages whilst not remembering a thing. I kept trying and trying to read, but eventually I gave up. It was too sad and too stressful and generally, I wound up really upset and anxious because I wasn’t getting it right and I couldn’t stop my thoughts.

Sometimes, I get selective reading abilities. I can read blogs or I can read short news articles or something as long as it’s not too long. Other times, there’s no reading at all. It’s stressful. Especially because T.V., films and video games don’t make me feel at all productive. I feel like a waste of space because I’m so far from being able to read for study it’s ridiculous.

I haven’t always been like this. I read a lot when I was younger. I don’t really know when it got harder to do because I just didn’t really notice. I stopped reading as much because I was a lairy teenager and was way too busy with shoplifting makeup, smoking, keeping up with Hollyoaks and trying to look older than I really was. Looking back, there’s a serious correlation between my ability to read and the path my eating disorder took, though I deffos wasn’t conscious of it at the time. As I started losing weight, my ability to focus on a page grew and grew. I read a lot a lot whilst eating next to nothing and exercising a lot. I also studied harder and was way more organised. Everything was planned and executed to some next level of perfection. There’s a point you lose some of that though. Starve yourself for long enough and you get more and more focused on food until all you can read is food, diet or eating disorder related, and all that organisation is purely based around the what’s, where’s and when’s of food and exercise. That’s all there is.

With recovery though, I can’t even read about food anymore. I totally lost the ability to concentrate for long enough to read really and it’s only when I lost reading this time round that I really noticed it going. Now, reading is nearly impossible. I lost the planning and organising too. It’s probably the only part of my eating disorder I miss in a non-anorexia way. I mean, I miss knowing I was the smallest in a room and I miss feeling smug because I ate salad whilst everyone else had proper food, but that’s all just because eating disorders (and in a way, some of the general and stupid ideas within society) are crazy. I think I was just way more capable of switching off my constant mind noise and emotional disasters when I exercise like a demon and live off leaves and caffeine. Regardless though, there are still way too may negatives to starvation, some of which are pretty lethal, so whatever I miss I know isn’t worth it.

But anyways, today I did something I haven’t done for ages. The Ma showed me an article from the Observer New Review on Ben Goldacre’s new book Bad Pharma and I got so excited I immediately ordered it on Amazon, spending an extra £6 so it’ll come tomorrow.  I really really love Ben Goldacre and I loved Bad Science and I think he’s a massive G. I’m really excited about a book. which is ridiculous seeing as I may not even be able to read it. When I read Bad Science I was pretty sick so I was able to really focus on it. I was working in a nursery at the time and I’d sit on the curb outside in my lunch with my weighed out Bran Flakes in a tupperware pot, skimmed milk, black coffee and cigarettes, wondering how I would manage until dinner and learning about how science can be misused in order to promote certain points of view and how much of a lol Dr. Gillian McKeith PhD. is. It’s quite a happy memory in its own way (though how on earth I managed nine-hour shifts with 25 three to five-year olds with nothing but coffee, Diet Coke, cigarettes and a tiny bowl off Bran Flakes is beyond me). I think working at the nursery in general is happy memories though, and it’s only second best memory of reading in my lunch, beat by American Psycho though (the rats! Gah!). Plus his columns in the Guardian are awesome too. Now he has a whole new book and I so badly want to read it. He’s just so good. One of my top five people I don’t know if I’d rather marry or be.

ben goldacre

Will I be able to read though? It’s actually scary as well because I really need a good thing to get me through this week. I’ve been counting the days down till so many fucking scary things that start happening this week and a week tomorrow, they’ll all be over. I so badly want something to be a nice treat during this fucking stress hell of a week. Like so so much. What if I can’t even read it though? That’d seriously suck out. Not gonna lie, I’d probably cry. I know it’s pathetic but, at least in my head, if I can finish this book which I’ll blatantly love, it’ll mean I’d of broken this no reading spell I’m in and I’ll be able to study and focus and soon enough I’ll be able to finish my dissertation and therefore degree and live will be brilliant. If I can’t though, then I’m stuck not being able to read anything ever again because if I can’t read something I like as much as Ben Goldacre, how will I ever read again? There’s a lot riding on this Amazon delivery tomorrow. I have so much hope. Writing this makes me feel kinda weird because I have just realised that actually, I have kinda built a pop science book into a possible life changing moment. We’ll see.

On an entirely separate note, I made a roast dinner today. I haven’t made roast in ages (actual years) because a) so much calories and b) it’s really long, but today I did. I cooked like a normal person. I didn’t measure anything or look at any calorie info. I used as much oil as I needed and lots of seasoning and stuff. I just picked for taste, not health. It was good. Roast beef covered in wholegrain mustard with a shit load of garlic, roast garlic and thyme potatoes, honeyed carrots, shredded cabbage and leek with spring onions and pecans (we’d run out of walnuts) and toasted brocoli. Om nom nom. And also, cherry frangipan with custard. I have so little idea of how much I ate today and I really enjoyed cooking and it was good. It was  just entirely normal eating. I feel like I’m actually at a point where I’m recovered to a point where my eating disorder is fully in remission and it’s totally nang. Bare hapz. I really didn’t know food could ever be this easy again :D.

Wish me literate luck.

//

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Filed under eating disorder, eats, rant, recovery

“i’ll never cheat. i’ll be the best girl you’d ever meet.”

So I’m officially the worst of all the bloggers. I accept that. I think I need to take more space from a lot of things whilst I single-handedly ignore everything that takes any effort. I’m being lazy, but in the best way. Obviously. In my defense, there have been several times I’ve tried to do a new post, then as I’ve pressed publish, it’s said “Are you sure you want to publish this? Click here to try again” and, because saving drafts is obviously for wimps, the whole post is just gone. So then I got infuriated and angry at WordPress for being such a dicknose about life.

So here I am. Trying to blog. Again. I keep forgetting.

I think as well a part of it is that I actually do stuff now. Like, I’m actually seeing and talking to people. It’s really good because I have lots of friends and I think I’m making a sneaky few extras on the side too. I started this blog to tell my friends about where I’d gone, and now I’m back. Plus, although there are still some food based hiccups, I’m actually maintaining nice and well and eating pretty chaotically, but enough. I’m just kinda eating like a normal person. It took long enough, but I think I’m still doing well eating disorder wise.

The parts of my life which are more difficult mental health wise are difficult to talk about. I’m still really not fully comprehending borderline personality disorder I don’t think because it just feels like what I do. It’s what I’ve always been like. But then, apparently it’s all pretty crazy. I don’t know. I know it’s not what I wanted recovery to be like though. I was so glad to get a break from all these things when I stopped eating. I thought I’d grown out of it, not that I’d just hidden it. Now it’s all back. It’s just like being sixteen all over again. I hate it. But it’s all hard to blog about.

Borderline personality has like nine criteria, with the presence of five or more providing a diagnosis. All the criteria are things like “impulsive behaviours in potentially self-damaging areas” (read drug/alcohol abuse, sex, excessive spending etc.); “frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment” (so obviously a lot of unflattering behaviours here); raging (that attractive trait I want all my friends to know about); unstable identity (which if I was to try and explain would be crazy making in and of itself); unstable relationships with others characterised by devaluation and idealization (again, ranting about how much I hate/love my friends is obviously a great thing for all my friends to read); “recurrent suicidal behaviour, gestures, threats or self-injury” (another great sharing piece. Totally doesn’t alienate anyone); “affective instability” (ok so this isn’t so bad to share, but it is still a little bit weird and because I don’t really notice it till after the event, I don’t really have that much insight. My moods seem perfectly reasonable to me); “chronic feelings of emptiness” (a real crowd pleaser); and “paranoid ideation, delusions or severe dissociation” in stressful situations (this one really screams nut bag at people. And also, how would I explain to someone that shit, I don’t know how I got there or that I really don’t remember that time they’re on about. I tried to once, and the other person thought I was so rude because it was so important to them). It’s hard to blog about things that can upset people, make me seem a total waste and are so difficult to untangle. I try to figure out whether the things that make me feel horrible relate to these symptoms. Quite often they do. But then I think no. I don’t know. It’s confusing.

Then google goes and tells you people with borderline personality disorder are bitches. Manipulative. Liars. Attention seekers. Run the fuck away. Google tells me I must be horrible. That doesn’t really make me want to share really.

I do think duloxetine was a winner in terms of making my overall mood more positive, but I’m still way too emotional. When I’m happy, I’m dancing and clapping and jumping up and down. When I’m sad, I’m tears and tantrums and shouting and occasionally flailing.

Still, before all this business of recovery, my crazy was really different, but equally crazy. It was contained and quiet and I was functioning well for a while at least. Now I’m “low-functioning” (thanks a lot Psychiatrist) and I’m going about being a mental at the world. The Ma called me up on creating multiple layers of drama. The post-anorexia me is dramatic and loud and out at the world for everyone to see. I’m not sure how much I want to spell that out for my real life people. I don’t want to be called up on it. I don’t want my fuck ups to be general knowledge and I don’t want to be judged for my actions and I don’t want social repercussions.

So instead, I hide away. Some of it is pretty jokes to explain, though is actually fucking distressing and confusing.

So yer, I don’t know where to go with this blog. Too many people are involved in my life now to actually be open about much. I wish I could blog about it, but I shot myself in the foot with the whole lack on anonymity thing.

A meaningless example. Last week, I had a therapy appointment. It was at 2pm, so I had to leave at 1pm. I was all getting ready on time and being all nervous, but then my iPod broke. It got really hot and started to smell like burning rubber. So I started panicking. How could I go out without an iPod? How? Everything would be so wrong. So I pulled my hair and ripped at my skin because I was so fucking thrown over the iPod issue and just could not contain it. I popped some Valium to try to chill a little bit before therapy, then frantically tried to put music on my smart phone whilst waiting for it to kick in. The smart phone thing did actually work out in the end, but midway through sorting it, my EDU called to say therapy was cancelled and the Psychologist would get back to me the next day. That was it. The Therapist hates me so much and is avoiding me and doesn’t give a fuck because no one gives a fuck and my iPod was broken so I couldn’t even leave the house and we had guests. So I cut myself with a razor because I couldn’t contain how fucking stressed I was. Eventually the Valium kicked in, and I chilled enough for a while, but ended up really going for gold that evening because I felt so horrible inside. I ended up drinking all the alcohol and taking all the drugs and embarrassing myself in front of guest like people and not sleeping at all. At around 8am, I started to freak out that I’d be asleep when the Psychologist called. At 10am I called in, still fucked.  He wasn’t there. They asked me to leave a message, but I couldn’t because then he’d know I cared and he can’t know I care because then I’m exposed. So I called again a few hours later. He still wasn’t in, but they recognised my voice and knew my name and asked to take a message again. I said no, hung up and took more Valium to get to sleep because I was scared of him knowing I’d called. Next day, he still hadn’t called and my iPod wasn’t fixed and everything was still rubbish. Another call, he wasn’t available, I refused to leave a message and self-injured because he’s ignoring me and hoping I’ll never show up again. I mean, he was at work, just not calling like they said he would. The next day he was actually in, but I was so angry I could hardly speak to him. Cut myself again, got trashed again. Because he didn’t seem to realise how much he’d upset me. And I can never tell him because then a) he’ll know I care and b) I don’t even know if I care, or I’m pretending to care so he’ll feel bad because all my thoughts are fabrications and lies and c) it might make him hate me. And he obviously doesn’t give a fuck.

I did have an appointment at the Apple shop today though, and they gave me a brand new iPod for only £30 because mine had broke! There was at lease 45 minutes of uncontainable excitement at this, so I called loads of people up and asked them what muffins they wanted and bought so many muffins. I just had to talk to people and buy things in order to make it out of Covent Garden. I then ran to Holborn station because I had so much energy. Me, in my DMs and big headphone and horrendously large jewellery, running through commuter areas because I was so excited. A couple of texts and a few badly chosen songs later and I wanted to die because I remembered how much I’m messing up so had to ask my friend to see me specially to give me a hug so I knew he liked me and didn’t secretly wish me dead.

Thing is, did I even really care about my iPod, or was I just pretending to myself and the world that I care? Do I even like music? Or is that just made up too? It must be made up because there isn’t a core to me. I’m all constructed. Thoughts, feelings, behaviours. They’re all constructs anyway. Everything constructed for others to create a likeable person, hiding the nothing inside.

And really, this stuff is pretty minor flex really. It’s non event stuff. When it’s actually bigger events (although probably still small to other people), the fall out can be much more drastic. I’m not good at containing myself. I act in, I act out. I just spill bits of me everywhere I go. And honestly, I don’t really know if that’s borderline behaviours or not. It’s good when I’m happy though because I’m just so excited. It’s fun. The other side of that is less fun. But when this is how ridiculous my mentalness is. it can be hard to explain and kinda horrific to share with people and is all a little bit much for most people to deal with.

So there you have it. Some thoughts for today. And a little bit of where I’ve been.

The title of this post has nothing really to do with what I’ve written. It’s just from a song that I essentially listen to way too often. It’s horrible and a little bit too much for my brian right now. It about sums up my mood and a lot of my feelings right now.

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Filed under bpd, recovery, rubbish