It’s not like anything specific had triggered this, and in all honesty, it had been coming for a while, just the month before I had terrified a trainee doctor when I came hysterically crying in her office explaining that I couldn’t sleep or motivate myself. “Do you feel suicidal” she said. Yes I replied. “Have you made a plan?” She said, No, I replied. I lied. I had made a pact with myself in February that I would kill myself in August had my life not turned around. Now it was September and nothing had changed, but I was still here. She prescribed sleeping pills doubled my dose of prozac and took a huge sigh of relief when I stopped hysterically crying and began to speak more clearly. She told me that if things got worse, I had to come back earlier than the 2 weeks she had suggested.
I have always hated that about doctors “if things get worse come back sooner” How do I judge when things are worse? When does worse, become worst? I’ve talked before about how I am unable to really judge what constitutes my mental health reaching a point where it is “worse” the gradual deterioration of me, is not great drop, but a smooth slope. I don’t see myself getting worse because I am with myself constantly. . .
But the point is suddenly I felt given up on. My doctor couldn’t help me and now he was palming me off to someone he assumed might be able to. When you become a doctor I assume it’s because you want to help people. Was it ok for me to be upset to feel almost “dumped” by a doctor I had invested my time and honesty about my mental health problems? I wanted him to help me. That’s why I had picked him out of all of the doctors I had seen over the first few months of my diagnosis. After this I always made my appointments with him, because I thought he understood. I thought he could help. . .
Some of the things I write about here I could never discuss out loud with anyone. Why? Because they hurt that much. I’m not ready. And I’m sure a lot of people with mental health problems will understand the idea of “not being ready”. . .
Read more of The Elephant’s story. Visit Pitty and fear: Or, Why I Am Not Yet Ready To Be Referred | The Elephant in the Room.
Trigger Warning: Brief mention of self-harm
I’ve suspected for a while that I have been developing some form of social anxiety, I’ve been avoiding people, staying in bed longer than I should and not wanting to go to work. But today, for the first time I truly realised the severity of my “new” condition.
When I was younger, I can’t pinpoint the exact age, Sometimes, when I was surrounded by a lot of people, or I had to talk in front of the class or even sometimes just randomly for no reason I would suddenly feel like I wasn’t ok and that I wanted to be at home lying on the sofa with my blanket and a milkshake. I used to refer to it (in my head as I never told anyone about it) as the “milkshake feeling” (I used to drink nothing but strawberry milkshake from about the age of 3-12) I hadn’t had the “milkshake feeling” for a long time but yesterday I had it twice.
It doesn’t last long, but it makes me feel like I need to get away from things, I feel like I want to go and lie on the floor, and curl up or hide, I feel scared, like I’m going to lose control and start crying and all I can think about is being in the one place that I must assume is “safe” my sofa. With the things that made me happy as a child. Is this a panic attack? I don’t know, but what I do know is that sometimes this is accompanied with a breathless feeling and worry and it is panic induced. . .
I think the “milkshake feeling” is a nostalgic feeling of being content. It reminds me of when I would have a sick day from school and I would lay on the sofa (with my milkshake) and watch TV. I guess I felt safe because I was indoors, happy because I wasn’t at school and looked after because I was a child and my mum was there watching TV and making sure I was ok, of course, this is different now and I wouldn’t expect her to drop everything and look after me if I threw up a few times. It’s that feeling of safety that I guess is my brains go to juncture when I really start to panic.
Read more of The Elephant in the Room’s story! Visit Here Comes the Anxiety | The Elephant in the Room.
I feel like there are two very different sides to me. There is the me that most people know, “the show” the people who see this side think I’m doing great, they think I’m happy and doing well. But as this blog has displayed that is just a front that I put on so as not to worry people. I spoke before about how I put people’s feelings first, this includes me pretending I’m fine so they don’t worry. But there are a “lucky” few people who have seen the “real me” the me that really isn’t all that happy and hasn’t been for a long time now.
My depression has evolved since its debut in my life, back then it was something that made me want to be alone and listen to sad songs, I didn’t understand what made me want to do this at the time, I thought I just liked sad songs, but I see now that it was at this point I developed my second skin. My depression skin. . .
I’m not sure what, aged about 5 made me listen to a CD of folk music by a band from the 60′s but I did, and I enjoyed it. As the years went on I kept going back to this CD. And there was one song that for some reason really stood out for me and I would listen to it on repeat. And I completely forgot about that song until very recently when I wrote a post called “More Than Glad to be Unhappy” which is a line taken directly from one of the Mamas and the Papas songs. Writing that post got “Glad To Be Unhappy” stuck in my head so I dug out the CD and had a listen. When I heard the song “Look Through My Window” I suddenly had flashbacks to sitting on my bedroom floor listening to the song on repeat. It’s a real typical depression song. You know on TV when you see someone depressed looking through a window whilst it rains? Well, that’s basically the idea of the song. It’s funny how something that seems so insignificant as a child really was the point I started to grow my second skin.
And so, it’s been 20 years since I was 5 years old. I always thought I got depressed more around the age of maybe 8 or 9, but maybe not. Maybe I have always been depressed. It seems depression has become my friend not my enemy in my journey through life. Its become a bit of an influence, a soul shattering, mind numbing inspiration that has helped me express things in a way I never thought I would be able to.
Read the rest of the story! Visit My Second Skin | The Elephant in the Room.
I know people mean well, but I have said before that I’m just not good with pity, I just don’t really know how to react to it. But that’s not the sole reason I don’t talk about my depression. One of the biggest things I always worry about is that If I tell someone how I feel they will think I am trying to bring them down, and that is not what I’m trying to do. I realise I’m not the most positive person in the world, I never really have been. But that’s just me. I like to think that I don’t just talk about my depression. I try to make jokes, I try to make everyone else happy. Sometimes I’m so busy making everyone else happy I forget about myself, but that’s another piece for another day. . .
I’m not trying to guilt trip anyone by telling them I’m depressed, and that’s another thing I worry about as I realise that one day I may have to tell my parents about this. Because instead of being sympathetic, they would blame themselves and that is not what I’m trying to make someone do. I know that how I feel is not the fault of anyone in particular, people contribute to my good and bad feelings but overall this is just me. But I’m also not asking to be fixed, personally I don’t think I am fixable. And maybe I don’t want to be “fixed” It’s not that easy to undo 10 years of my brains constant domineering.
Read the post in its entirety! Visit Bring You Down | The Elephant in the Room.