New Year New Rules?

Looking back it has been a very long time since I have posted and I have to say a lot has changed. So here is a small attempt to catch you guys up on all that has been going on.

I graduated from my program with honours and while I should be excited I know it is just a stepping stone to some bigger stuff.

I got a job from my last placement and I have been able to put in some hours recently which is nice. I also courtesy of my friend got a job over the holidays that allowed me to get some much needed cash so I wasn’t strapped for money over the break. I am now in the process of job hunting and looking for a closer more suitable position that pays a bit more.

I started dating someone which is exciting. He officially asked me out last night but we’ve been seeing each other for about three weeks now and its kind of awesome. He is fairly patient with me and we are taking things slowly and just having fun.

My depression has improved and I think that’s in part because there is less stress in my life, and the fact that I went up on my dosage for my medication. Things have finally stabilized and I feel like I am in a good place right now. I am expecting the blow up that usually happens after something significant like a graduation happens but who know maybe this one will be different.

There have been a lot of changes in my life and I am surprised as to how well I am handling them. While I started a new job it is still somewhat familiar because the rules and routine are fairly the same even when you go to different homes. There are some amazing opportunities out there that I need to apply for I just wish I could get my act together and apply already.

So I decided not to make any new years resolution this year because they always fail. Instead I am determined to make what I call a lifestyle change. This means overall eating healthier, going to the gym more regularly, and just being more conscious of what I put into my body. I am also determined to not let this spin out into an ED control thing so I am going to be honest with my therapist about how things are going food and exercise wise.

I finally finished my training for volunteering at a crisis line and I have been on the line a couple of times already this month. I have only had one call so far which went fine so we’ll see how things progress and if anything comes up.

This is just a quick snapshot of everything that has happened so far but I will attempt to blog more regularly.

Plunging into Darkeness

I am feeling a bit on edge all week and anxious for no reason.  My mood is feeling very low and I am exhausted all the time.  I am finding it hard to find the motivation to do things and when I do its like an hour window before things sort of crash again and I am unsure of what to do. I am kind of scared that I am going back to how I was feeling before my med change but I also know that I am just tired of being on medication despite the drop in mood. While I like socializing I need space and time to myself and I would rather spend time alone in my room or in a separate room than with others. I can feel myself withdrawing and just checking out all the time. I am so close to finishing this program but I have no motivation to do anything or to care about anything anymore.  I just want to hide from the world right now and I don’t know what to do cause there is so much expected of me and I feel like doing none of it. I am just kind of done right now and trying to find pockets of time to try and get stuff done but that’s not very often or long anymore.  In short I am just exhausted.

Dissociation & Triggers

So i’m having a bit of an issue with triggers and how best to handle them. I had a bit of a slip up last night and I ended up cutting for the first time in months.I would like to say that I’m not going to do any more from now until the time we meet but I honestly don’t know how I feel. It was such a relief to kind of just give in, let go and just feel the pain followed by the relief I get when I am cutting that I have missed that. I am so exhausted mentally and I feel somewhat disconnected from my current environment. I am being triggered at placement, at school during my classes and just by other people around me. Certain issues that are brought up, and the way it is treated by others who do not have knowledge about issues like eating disorders or self-harm making comments about an issue they have no knowledge off makes me mad.  I think the hardest thing is that most people without really realizing make actions which for someone like me who is currently struggling with urges just gets to me. I am feeling very hyper-sensitive and while I can put it aside for the most part during internship, and during class, but then I come home and I sit with the feelings and the anger or frustration and I don’t know how to deal with it. Sometimes I think I get so angry or so worked up that the only things I can think of is to find a way to physically express or see what thoughts are in my head that I kind of just let it all build up that I end up cutting or restricting. I don’t really know how to handle the constant thoughts in my head. I honestly feel like I am slowly shutting down on the inside. I can keep his facade on that everything is alright and that I am alright but on the inside things are slowly crumbling on the inside. It’s like i’m fighting with myself all the time in my head, on how I should be feeling, and how I should be presenting myself, and what I should or shouldn’t be saying and its just trying. It’s like I can’t be real with myself because I am afraid that if I let my guard down and everything is going to come crashing down and I don’t think I can handle that right now. I’m really struggling to stay healthy and not engage in ED behaviours but its getting harder because all I want do right now is numb and disengage from the world around me. I feel like I am not present half the time and I just zone out without realizing that I am not present in the moment. I also think that’s part of why I engaged in cutting because it helps me in the moment to focus on something and to stay present in the activity. Its like for a moment nothing else exists but me and my tools and the marks that I make on my body. Its like for that moment, when it happens, when I cut, its almost like a sigh or relief, a release of built up emotions. Like I have been holding my breath for days and when I cut, its like I just let it all out. I let it go and momentarily, no matter how short it lasts I feel better. Right now, that’s all I am craving, that physical grounding, that release that I get from the tools and my cut, and the reality that no matter what i’ll always have that release, that out to rely on, and I will go out of my way to get that feeling. No matter how unhealthy or backwards I know my thinking is, its like in that moment, rationality isn’t in play, it isn’t even a question I ask myself, instead its all about how deep do I want to go, and how much pain do I want to achieve from this. How much do I need to feel that release over and over and over again before things finally start feeling better. This is how I am feeling and where my mindset is.

Disorganized chaos

It is currently week three of the new term and I am still frantically trying to pull myself together. I feel like I am working in disorganized chaos as I go through each day blindly, pondering is this really where I am meant to be. I often sit and gaze and wonder into my head as I recount over and over again all the things that I need to do in short space of time I am awake. As my mind frantically makes lists of things that will never be gotten so, as it attempts to organize what has become my disorganized life, I seem to pull more things together. As if doing internship 3 days a week, 6hrs of class in 2 days, volunteering once a month to teach in Sunday school and a young adult ministry once a week, I have decided to add a youth group on Tuesday nights, and will be going through the interview process and hopefully the training for a crisis phone line where I will be volunteering for 16hrs a month. I know it doesn’t seem like much individually but when you add travelling time, time to do assignments and test that occur on a weekly basis, it begins to add up very fast. In between all of this I need to fit in bi-weekly sessions with my therapist, and simply just keeping up with everything school and family related. So how am I going to keep track of all of this you ask??? I have no idea, and I am simply hoping that with time as I fall into the rythm of the new semester and everything that it holds I will start to turn my disorganized chaos into organized chaos, in the hopes of slowing down what is my very anxious and overworked self.

And so it begins….

So my last and final term has begun and I am already feeling very unsettled. I feel like there is already so much to do and I am somehow behind on things even though they haven’t started. I feel like a mess, my anxiety is high and when I am not busy with something my mind is racing about everything that needs to be done, that hasn’t been done, future things, basically I feel like I am a mess. Things from last semester are still left hanging and the fact that it is completely out of my control drives me insane. To top it off i’m exhausted physically already and term hasn’t even begun. I am just all over the place and I don’t know how to calm things down. I’ve tried planning things out, writing it down but it doesn’t seem to be working or to be as effective right now. My normal coping mechanism is to exercise but i’m afraid that if I got to gym when I don’t have a scheduled class I am attending that i’ll fall back into old patterns which I am trying to avoid right now. I am spending so much time in my head that I don’t know if I have absorbed any of the information that I have read for my placement in the last two days. I don’t know how to fix things and I feel like I am sinking. I am so close to breaking down, to withdrawing into myself again and just going through the motions of life because I feel the need to shut down. I was on campus on Tuesday and I was overwhelmed by the amount of people there, and although I am not claustrophobic, I felt suffocated and irritated by everyone around me. I honestly could not wait to get out because I felt like at any moment if something went wrong I would simply just breakdown and cry or worse have a panic attack in the middle of the bookstore. I haven’t felt like this in a while and I don’t know what is happening and how to fix. I just want things to go back to being semi-normal, to being able to process things, to feeling at least a bit settled and I know it might take time but I don’t know if I can tolerate these feelings for much longer. 

Rest in Peace, Robin Williams

Journalling through Depression

As I was heading home from my yoga class, I heard the sad news that Robin Williams has died of suspected suicide.

An amazing person who gave the world so much joy, it is so tragic that he himself struggled with severe depression.

This brings home the fact that mental illness has a long and indiscriminate reach. That it is so often hidden below the surface and isolates the sufferer.

Some of my earliest memories are of toddling about and laughing at the antics of Williams’ hilarious character Mork in Mork and Mindy. I grew up with the Dead Poets Society, Aladdin, Mrs. Doubtfire and Good Will Hunting. He was such a talented man.

Please take this as a reminder that major depression is a serious illness and that it should not be ignored. It can affect anyone and we need to have more openness and help for sufferers, without…

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Traumatic Present

Visually I could take myself back to that moment, that specific day when it happened. Where I was, and where he was and what he said and did during the incident. I can remember laying in bed and not being able to move because i’d hurt my foot about a week ago and was still using and needing crutches to get around. I remember him asking the question and me saying no because I felt gross and dirty cause I hadn’t been able to shower in a few days and I needed help. I remember feeling violated and powerless, like what I wanted didn’t matter because he was just going to do what he felt like. I’ve played this event over and over in my head for the last few years and I keep wondering if there was something different that I could have done. All I can think of right now, is that maybe if I hadn’t given up so easily he would have stopped. Or maybe if I had kept saying no he would have stopped and I wouldn’t be having these issues today.

As a result, I feel like I can’t trust myself because, I let it happen. I allowed someone into my life, that couldn’t respect me in the way I wanted and I did nothing about it. Its like maybe if I was more persistent, if I had yelled at him, if I had done anything but lay there and let this happen then things would be different. I wouldn’t feel so violated, I wouldn’t feel so broken and so hurt by the one person I trusted in that moment to do what was best. If I had done anything but just stay there and let it happen, maybe things would be different and I would see myself as being worth something. But instead, all I feel is shame and guilt because I let it happen despite my history. I knew what was going to happen and I did nothing.

There is a lot more I have been unable to say or express because up until recently, I never really saw this as an issue. I just thought of it as something I went through, until it was pointed out to me by a close friend. I still blame myself for what happened and how I felt and feel right now because if there is one thing that I can control, it is my feelings and my reactions to situations and this is one of them I feel like I should have been able to control. I know this is probably something that we should talk about, but I don’t know how to bring it up so i’m writing you this email instead. I know we all carry stuff from our past that stops us from moving forward, but this feels very much in my present. Not something in my past that has been hidden away and forgotten, but something that is soo much a part of my every day life in how I treat myself that I can’t ignore it anymore.

There is a part of me that truly believes that if I just punish my body into submission, that If I lost enough weight, if I can control my environment, what I put into my body and how much I eat or don’t eat, then and only then can I begin to fix the mistakes of the past. Because I may finally accept myself for who I am, and I may finally be happy with my physical outer self, and maybe that can then translate into a better inner self. The maybe and only then, will I finally be happy with the person I see in the mirror, and the person I think I am.

This last piece is going to seem small and insignificant compared to what I’ve just written above, but I was getting really bad headaches, to the point where I would be sleeping and would get woken up by a throbbing pain in my head, and sever dry mouth that i stopped taking my medication and Tuesday would make it about a week since I have been off it. I didn’t book an appointment with my dr or talk to him beforehand because/ I didn’t think that he would tell me anything different than what I a trying to do. I just want to make sure that my dry mouth and headaches are not caused by my medication and I feel like the only way to do that is to take them out of the equation and see if the symptoms persist before talking to my Dr.

Bruised, Battered & Broken Reality

I have seriously neglected this blog and i’m sorry to my followers. I would like to think that it is because I am so busy that I just can’t find the time to update my blog, but honestly it is because I have not made much progress towards things getting better. I started a new term at the beginning of May and I still do not feel settled. Something is missing and I can’t quite figure it out yet. Maybe it is because I feel like I need to have a job already, like all this schooling is enough. Maybe it is because that I am thinking so far into the future that I am neglecting my present. I keep thinking of all my hopes and dreams and plans I have for my life, that I have to look forward to that I am forgetting to stay in the present and deal with the issues that are happening now. I am choosing to numb instead and as a result, my eating is kind of not great right now. I feel like I am in a binge restrict cycle where I will restrict for a couple of days and then binge for a couple and repeat the cycle. Now when I say binge It is not in the traditional binge sense of an ED but more so that because I am restricting what might be a “normal” amount feels more like a binge. The other part is that I feel like I am living two separate worlds right now that do not mesh. My friends and peers do not really understand what I do and cannot therefore understand the gravity of the things I face on a daily basis. This past week i’ve been working on life skills programming for youth who I know fully well will not do any of the programming that is planned. I am also so far into the future that I am looking at apartments in a town that is close to my last internship in the hopes that if I get a job I will be able to move out. So things are feeling rather unsettled, and things feel like they are changing. If there is one thing I know about myself, it is that I do not deal well with change. This holds true when I am anticipating change and even when the change has happened. I am also feeling rather removed from reality and life right now. I almost feel like I am going through the motions of it but I am unaware of what is really happening around me. It almost feel surreal, like I am watching myself perform theses tasks, go through these up and down’s and yet I am just not really there and I do not know how to fix things. I exercised for about a week straight and then I had to stop because I was working 7am shifts. I am hoping to get back into things next week which might force me to eat a bit more than I have been doing recently. I will be working a 3pm shift next week so also hoping that things will improve. I am just trying to process things but right now I am feeling like I am overloaded with  information and  I am shutting down. My depression is still there loud and strong preventing me from doing the things I want to do. I am so exhausted all the time that, the little energy I do have, I prefer to conserve it for the next day. So as a result, I am feeling bruised, battered and broken in my new reality, without much of a clue on how to turn things around. 

Relapse

I thought things were starting to finally turn itself around. I thought that I finally had my depression, anxiety and ED under control but that doesn’t seem to be the case anymore. I am starting to see myself slipping again and its starting to frustrate me. I am losing my appetite and its part in stress and part in response to restricting certain meals. I am physically exhausted because of my shifts this week cause I have been working 3-11pm at my new placement. I have been having serious body issues with my weight and how I look and it just throwing me into a deeper depression. I don’t know what to do because my mood is so low that when I am lone all I want to do is sleep and cry. I have been unable to read for my course my psychology course this summer and I think that is adding to my level of stress and anxiety. I am such a perfectionist and this is coming out way more often now that I am cooking for other residents. I feel ill equipped to cook in a kitchen that doesn’t have everything I need and I feel like i’m always scrambling for things and ways to alter recipes that I make all the time at home but don’t have the right ingredients. It is frustrating to me and I just can’t handle the fact that it is not perfect. Most of staff do not cook or cannot cook i’m not sure which yet lol, but I always seem to get relegated to cooking when i’m on shift. All of this adds to my ever growing anxiety and list of things that I worry about on a daily basis. I am frustrated with myself because I want to exercise to lose weight but I can’t because I am always so exhausted and with depression and anxiety it makes it difficult to want to do things. When people start talking to me about exercising being a lifestyle and how they have been though this before etc. In my head i’m like yeah try going to school and dealing with depression and anxiety and an ED but I can’t say any of those things so yeah it just sits inside and festers. Blah…

Checking in

It has been a while since I posted and i’m sorry for neglecting this place. I have been very busy and very unmotivated to post on here because well nothing good has happened. Since my last post, I got into a minor car accident, I am fine and no one involved was hurt. I completed my first week back at school and I am exhausted. I feel like it has been a none stop week, like just everyday has something else going for it. I wish I had more to say but to be honest i’m blanking. Leave me a message and let me know how you are doing 🙂