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Home Alone…

with 18 comments

Time keeps passing. I don’t know where it goes to.

This weekend has been somewhat strange. The bloke is away for the weekend at a stag do and I’m home with just the doggy for company. I don’t remember the last time I was here on my own overnight, let alone for a whole weekend, so I don’t really know what to do with myself. Aside from my trip in the summer, there have been so few times when I’ve been without the bloke for more than a day since we went to uni. I was “well” in the summer too and now things are not so easy. I am managing, but it has made me realise how used I am to having him around and how much his presence keeps me functioning. Without him here, the temptation to give in and give up is so much greater.

Getting up and dressed is a struggle at the moment and I feel even less urge to conform when I don’t have reminders from the bloke. The guilt wears on me when he’s about and it serves to push me into action. It was only the desperate requests from the dog to be let out, that dragged me out of bed this morning. The thought of having to clean up any mess was enough to force me downstairs, but I climbed back in when she was sorted. I had to get up in the end as I was going over to a new friend’s for her kiddy’s 1st birthday party, but it took me literally hours to work myself up to that. Without that commitment today, the temptation would have been to stay in bed all weekend.

Food is another problem. The bloke is the cook in our house. I can bake cakes, but when it comes to a proper meal I don’t tend to bother. I don’t have the best appetite these days, but when food is presented to me I do tend to eat. Without the bloke around to cook for me, I don’t tend to bother. I’m even less inclined to cook at the moment as both our oven and the microwave are broken.

The dog is a commitment too and she does keep me going, but she isn’t as effective at nagging as the bloke is and I find the commitment straining. She did get me up this morning and she gets me into the kitchen, prompting me to eat at the same time that I feed her, but she is also tiring and I feel guilty when I just want to stay in bed and ignore her. She also got me to go outside for a walk, which I know is good for me, but at the same time I wish I didn’t have to. It’s so tempting not to bother, but I cannot deny her a walk for long or she turns into a great big bonkers thing, which is even more draining to live with than the walk.

I’m really tired. I want to sleep forever, yet sleeping for just a few hours seems to be enough of a challenge. It was late when I finally dragged myself upstairs to bed last night and I sat and knitted up there for a while because I couldn’t sleep.

Before the bloke left, I had to promise I’d be safe this weekend. He has been somewhat paranoid over the past few weeks that I’m suicidal again. The last two years have been particularly difficult at this time, in the run up to my birthday, so I know he is on edge. He doesn’t trust me at all and although I know his fears are not unfounded and it is only because he cares, it is still hard. One day last week I had nipped out and wasn’t home when he was due back from work. My mobile phone battery had died so he couldn’t get hold of me. I’d even left a note to say that I’d be back in a minute, because I worried that without my phone he would wonder where the hell I was, but he didn’t see it and just flew into a tailspin instead. He completely jumped to conclusions and panicked that I’d gone out to kill myself.

I’d actually nipped out to rescue the dog’s ball because she had lost it on our walk and I couldn’t get it out of the brambles and control her at the same time. She has a habit of diving head first into all the brambles and rose briers to rescue her ball then getting stuck – we both end up cut and bleeding, as I have to battle to rescue both her and the ball. I literally had to drag her home, shut her in the house and then go back out to dig out the ball from the bushes. By the time I got home I was greeted by the bloke just about to drive off in my car to try and find me, ranting and raving with anger. This isn’t the first time this has happened, but it the first time in a long while and I was disappointed that things had not moved on and that the trust hasn’t been rebuilt by now.

It turns out that he mainly panicked because he had been reading my mood log. I was updating one online and I had no idea he had been reading it. I tended to keep my notes in there very short and they were only for me, so a note mentioning suicidal planning thoughts did not necessarily mean what he thought it did. I was angry that he had invaded my privacy again, but I know it only comes from fear and concern. I don’t feel able to update the log any more though. It was meant to be for me and no one else. A reminder of how things are, because so often I cannot remember what my mood was like a week or a month ago.

But anyway. I agreed that I will be safe. I am safe, but it doesn’t mean the temptation isn’t there. My mood is low and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t think about it. This weekend would have been the perfect opportunity and there are times when I cannot help the thoughts, but I have resigned myself to sticking around for a while yet.

I know the fact it is winter and in the run up to my birthday can’t be helping. I have been in hospital at this time for the last two years, and both times I was desperately suicidal and determined not to be around for my birthday. This year I seem to have accepted that I will be around and although I am not overly happy about it, I’m resigned to it. I am low and I don’t really want to be alive, but I feel the obligation to be. Also, I’m not sure why, but being 25 seems like a much better idea than 24 anyway – something about round numbers I think. My worry is that I’m already having to battle the thoughts that 25 is a good age to die. I have no desire to see 26, even if I am sure I will see 25. I hope that my mood will pick up before those thoughts get too strong or that the approach of my 26th birthday gets too urgent.

As for my 25th birthday, as Seaneen will recall, my invite for a smear test arrived. I went and had it a couple weeks ago and it was fairly painless and straightforward, although I bled quite a bit afterwards. Unfortunately though I got a letter on Thursday saying the result was “inconclusive” so I have to go and have another one in three months. I think this was just a case of not enough cells, at least that’s what I’m hoping, but it’s still pretty annoying to have to wait before they do it again.

In other news, I’ve had a review form for DLA to fill in for a couple of weeks now and I’ve failed to do it. I wrote to them before Christmas at the same time I wrote to notify the DWP that I was starting work part-time for ESA purposes, to say there had been *some* improvement to my condition since my initial application for DLA. I felt I had to, as I have been receiving Higher Rate Care and I am not sure I should be getting that rate any more. They sent me out a review form and I started to complete it, but I made a complete mess. I filled in my surname in the first name section, my date of birth wrong and made mistakes all over the place, because I couldn’t concentrate enough to fill it in and my memory is so shoddy I kept forgetting things. After some frustration, I rang them to ask for another form because I had made so many mistakes. I got this replacement two weeks ago now and I have still not even started it. Thankfully because I requested the review rather than them, there is no deadline for me to get it back, but I know I need to do it. I can’t face it though. I can copy across the stuff that was correct on my first attempt, but I don’t know what to do about the rest of it. The form is overwhelming and I don’t know what to write, especially as my mood has been so unstable of late. Sometimes I look at the form, think nothing is wrong and answer everything as if I was fine, but other days I look at the form and realise I can’t do any of the things it asks, including filling in the form for that matter. I know you have to say how your good and bad days very and highlight what the worst case scenario is, but I just don’t know what to write. I don’t even know what to put in the diagnosis section. Should I have told them that my diagnosis is under question back when it was first questioned a year ago, or can I just tell them I don’t know any more? I guess the latter is the truth, I don’t know, but I’m not sure if I should have told them I don’t know. As far as DLA and ESA are concerned, I assume they think my diagnosis to be Bipolar II disorder, which is what it was when I applied. As I don’t know what it has been changed to, I guess I can’t tell them, but I worry about what Dr M or Dr N will write when asked. I hate having to evaluate how bad I am. I honestly don’t know.

Hmm I don’t know what else to write. There are things I keep thinking about to write, but I just don’t know what to say. It has been the same all week. For weeks really. I am meant to be keeping a diary for therapy again and I haven’t managed to write anything properly. I just don’t know what to say. Brain is mush. I cannot think, I can barely feel. I just want a new head.

I am feeling increasingly agitated this evening. I am not sure why. Maybe now is the time I stop and knit for a bit to see if it calms me down. I spent a lot of yesterday knitting – I made a hat for the little boy’s birthday today and started a frilly scarf and it kept me busy and distracted whilst I was on my own. It’s the first thing I’ve done for a while. I haven’t had the motivation or the concentration for a while. Sometimes I get the urge to knit and think of a million projects I could be doing and other days I cannot even comprehend lifting the needles. There has been a lot of the latter lately, yet yesterday my head was buzzing with ideas of things I could knit. I can only knit so much though and when my concentration is so crap lately as much as I want to make these magical creations, there’s no way I’m actually able to. I end up having to undo as much as I do.

hmm. Head is starting to spin. I’m both tired and agitated and feel like I may need to throw things soon if things get any worse. I don’t know why I am feeling like this. I have been good lately and I’m avoiding caffeine in the hope that would ease the occasional agitation, but it doesn’t seem to be helping. Maybe I should just go to bed and try to sleep or maybe I should have a bath. Perhaps I’m just grouchy and tired. I don’t know.

This is a bitty post. I don’t seem able to write properly at the moment. I started writing this about 4pm and it’s now 11.30pm. It’s not even very long. I have found it really hard to try and get things down or to concentrate on it. I have watched bits of TV and fed the animals and stuff in between, but the rest of the time I have just been staring at the box wondering what to put in it, or more likely how to slow down and speed up and unravel my thoughts to try and type them. Some of the time it feels like my brain is like treacle and the thoughts are just so slow and other times they are bouncing around and rattling off the sides and at the moment both is happening at the same time and it just feels like a big ball of mush. It all makes no sense.

Anyway I am going to stop and kick the dog outside. She’s already taken herself to bed, but she needs to go out or I’ll get woken up very early in the morning! I don’t intend on being up early. The bloke isn’t due back until at least mid-afternoon and I think I’m leaning towards a morning of hibernation.

18 Responses

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  1. I can relate to quite a lot of this. The depression, the agitation, the complete lack of concentration.

    I don’t know what to suggest, apart from wishing you could talk to a doctor sooner than the end of March. Keep chatting to me if you like. :)

    xxx

    Narky

    Sunday, 13th February 2011 at 9:08 am

    • Weirdly your comment went through to moderation.

      I don’t think there is anything to suggest. I don’t even know if seeing a doc/psych is going to help. I just need to hope it all passes soon with the coming of spring.

      intothesystem

      Sunday, 13th February 2011 at 1:24 pm

      • Moderation in all things…(tell Doggy that!)

        Bristol Michael

        Saturday, 25th June 2011 at 11:06 am

  2. Doggy was okay last weekend after the chocolate, then? X

    Kate

    Sunday, 13th February 2011 at 9:30 am

    • Yep, thankfully so. I think I was just panicking unnecessarily. We do need to be more careful about what we keep out though and try and stop her stealing stuff – she’s become a right thief lately.

      intothesystem

      Sunday, 13th February 2011 at 1:24 pm

  3. I know what you mean about being better when your other half is around – I get up earlier, am more likely to get dressed, am more likely to leave the house, and will cook proper food when Mr Door is about. All things I’m struggling with while he’s on nights, especially because I have to be quiet around the house so it’s a good excuse not to do anything… I used to love having time to myself, but lately it’s gotten, well, depressing…

    Hope things pick up for you soon x

    Cellar_Door

    Sunday, 13th February 2011 at 4:15 pm

    • Yeah, I generally do still like the time to myself, but I’m also aware it is not overly healthy for me. As much as I hate being told what to do and “encouraged” (bullied) into action, sometimes it is useful!

      I hope things for you and Mr Door keep improving. xx

      intothesystem

      Monday, 14th February 2011 at 9:54 am

  4. Is there somebody who can help you with the DLA/ESA forms – I found it helpful even just to have someone to talk through the questions with to help clarify things, and I hear the CAB are very good at helping with these types of things?

    Other than that I don’t know what to say. I hope you feel better soon.

    Take care,
    Differently

    differentlysane

    Sunday, 13th February 2011 at 5:22 pm

    • I found the CAB in my village to be completely clueless when it came to disability benefits (ESA in particular, although that isn’t the primary concern) when I was trying to apply initally, so I’d be reluctant to go back to them.

      In general I guess it’s not that I don’t know *what* to write. I did it on my own last time and was successful first time, but I think it’s harder now I’m not as ill. Back then I was a complete mess so I just had to be honest about how I felt and it was obvious I needed support. These days I find it hard to pitch it at the right level. I’m definitely still unwell, but I’m not as unwell as I was. I don’t want to exaggerate, but I still need to be honest about how bad things can be. When I’m feeling up to doing the form though I think I can be a little in denial (“Don’t know what I was moaning about. I’m fine. Look, I’m working! I must be okay. etc.”), so I feel a tendency to minimise things, which is not what needs to go on the form!

      I find it hard to admit that I’ve been struggling again too, so I don’t really want to talk to someone and tell them how bad I really can feel!

      Thanks. xx

      intothesystem

      Monday, 14th February 2011 at 10:05 am

  5. I have access to the members area of the Benefits and Work website through my work. I’d be happy to share with you their very useful (long, but thorough) DLA guide if you want. I’ve just been through the ESA application for myself and I understand just how difficult that is. Email me at david.marsden@enfieldclubhouse.org.uk and I’ll send you the DLA stuff.

    David Marsden

    Sunday, 13th February 2011 at 10:08 pm

    • Thanks David. As I said to diff ^^ up there, I do have a good idea of what needs to be said, but I just find it difficult to actually do so!

      The guide may be helpful though – certainly can’t do any harm, so thanks for that offer. I’ll email you now.

      intothesystem

      Monday, 14th February 2011 at 10:08 am

  6. Yeah. I am so better when other people are around. Being alone isn’t good for anyone. For me that is one of the worst things my illness took from me – I used to love being alone with my own head. Now I only do when I’m on a high.

    Butterflywings

    Thursday, 17th February 2011 at 7:57 pm

  7. Yeah. I am so better when other people are around. Being alone isn’t good for anyone. For me that is one of the worst things my illness took from me – I used to love being alone with my own head. Now I only do when I’m on a high. Hope you feel a little better soon.

    Butterflywings

    Thursday, 17th February 2011 at 7:58 pm

  8. Reassuring as your bloke’s presence is, could there be a way (mutual friend?) of dissuading him from behaving like someone out of Monty Python when he thinks something may be wrong. Our local mh Trust has a consultant nurse whose job it is to look after carers. It doesn’t sound as if he has much confidence in himself, let alone in you.

    M ;)

    Bristol Michael

    Friday, 18th February 2011 at 6:03 pm

  9. Hi, new commenter,

    Sorry you’ve been feeling down. My doggies often force me out of bed as well, so I know that feeling. Drives me round the bed. Though I wouldn’t change them for the world.

    I think maybe your bloke getting some kind of support would be a good plan. I came back on several suicide attempts by my ex and even now it’s years later and I’m now longer with him I still panic when I can’t get hold of current boyf if he’s been a bit miserable and think he might have hurt himself. Even though current boyf doesn’t even have mental health problems!

    x

    North of Normal

    Tuesday, 8th March 2011 at 3:09 pm

  10. Hi I saw what you said at Seaneen’s blog about your GP and the recurrent depression vs bipolar II. I’ll repeat what I said there. Surely bipolar means ONE manic or hypomanic episode whether or not there’s also depression. So assuming you did have at least one such episode your diagnosis ought automatically to be bipolar NOT recurrent depression. Or am I missing something here?

    Just the viewpoint of an irritated fellow sufferer (bipolar schizoaffective doncha know). I’ve been through the mill bigtime with them thinking I must have a personality disorder ~ and this from a methadone clinic where they knew I was self-medicating my mood swings with heroin (highly unadvisable, but I lost 10 years to this form of “treatment” and methadone didn’t work for me, beyond making me physically OK)… only when the walls started talking to me at the end of last year and I was floridly manic, plunging into depression the self-same day did both I and my doctor realize something was wrong BIGTIME. So I do sympathize how ANNOYING it is to be miscategorized.

    As I say, isn’t it common knowledge that “once bipolar, always bipolar” whether you’re currently symptomatic or not. And seeing as you appear to be struggling against some not at all nice depression, you sound to me like you’re STILL BIPOLAR.

    I hope you start feeling better soon. All the best

    from Gledwood
    in London Town :-)

    Gledwood

    Tuesday, 8th March 2011 at 11:51 pm

  11. Hi,

    I’ve sat and read all your blogs today… I just wanted to say that you have done so well from where you were in the beginning. Keep up with therapy and continue to be honest. Being in therapy can mean things get worse before they get better so be honest about meds etc.

    All the best

    GP xxxx

    GoldenPsych

    Sunday, 10th April 2011 at 10:06 pm

  12. I miss your blogging, hope all is okay in life now you are back and work x

    Ms Leftie

    Friday, 24th June 2011 at 11:55 pm


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