Beginning Again with Therapy

Bright mint rubber boots in the garden summer house background

I was discharged from the hospital at the end of the second week of November, 2015. I knew immediately that I had to find a therapist, because that is what you do after you attempt suicide. I’m not a stranger to therapy, but admittedly it had been a while. I began my quest a bit slowly and timidly. It’s not easy to decide to whom you want to bare your soul, now is it?

After a couple of different attempts, I believe I have found someone who I can really work with. And, I kind of can’t believe it. I’ve been seeing her for about a month or so now, once a week, and I have experienced on two separate occasions (after leaving her office) ensuing really good days , which I have found totally perplexing, surprising and ultimately…good.

When you get used to so many days strung together that are bleak at best, it’s rather obvious when a good one comes along. When you can somehow associate that with your therapist and the work you are doing in therapy, I think that’s definitely a positive. Now positives aren’t something I’m used to talking about as of late…but hey…I’m working on it.

I find myself looking forward to the opportunity to share…to share my dark stuff. I want to share my secret feelings and frustrations with someone, someone that won’t be hurt or mad or frightened by them. I want to spill it. I want to spill my feelings all over the place like a can of red paint on bright white carpet. I want to look at it and see it and look at it with someone who won’t be upset with me for tipping over that can. I’m ready to talk.

The first couple of visits with my new therapist have been filled with a lot of history giving, the getting to know you drill and working on coping techniques – so that as we dig deep I have tools to handle the emotions and responses that will likely arise. I like that she is focused on helping me to develop these strategies and to learn to really use them. The trick is I have to remember to practice and to practice and to practice again. I’m not real good at that, historically. But since the paint is gonna spill eventually, it might be time I change my ways.

I went through an outpatient treatment program in October (before the suicide attempt) and came away with a gazillion handouts and info on coping techniques. I even put them in a binder with sheet protectors so that it would be easy to reference. Guess how many times I’ve opened that binder?

Zero. Zero times.

So now, with a new therapist by my side, it’s truly time to get better, make the effort and to practice using the tools she is providing me. If I don’t, I’m just going to end up back where I started…that’s not a place I want to go.

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Where It (Sort of) All Started

I’ll start by sharing the moment when I knew I was suffering from severe depression again. Not that I didn’t have symptoms before, but this was a defining moment, one of those I can look back on and say, yes, it was then, it was most definitely and clearly there and very present.

It happened this past Summer, during my favorite time of year. I was otherwise doing okay, I think. It’s a bit blurry, as most things are for me. But I had seen a doctor for a cough. Long story short, they did X-rays and found some kind of anomaly. The doctor actually asked if I had ever been shot, which was funny to me. Apparently the spot on my lung kind of looked like scar tissue from something like that. So, I had to have a CT scan. Following this news I became obsessed with getting the test done and finding out the results. Normal for me, as I kind of fixate on these sort of things. It took time, what felt like a very long time, to get the results. So for days I worried about things like the insurance pre-approval, the scheduling of the test, the CT scan itself and then…the results. This seemed like to me and possibly was, fairly normal behavior for a person who has been told they have a concerning spot on their lung.

My husband picked up the results the day they were ready and called me with them, which he thought was being really helpful, but inside I actually wanted to do it myself and to see the report tangibly, in my own uncertain hands. He called and said something like, “It’s all good. You’re fine, nothing to worry about.” I wanted details and he gave me what he could and then brought the report to me later in the day. But right then, after the phone call, I started to cry. I cried not for relief, but in sadness and grief.

After mulling it over I realized, I wanted to die. I actually wanted this spot to be cancer. I wanted an illness to take me out and for it not to be my fault.

Who thinks that? Who in their right mind wants to have cancer?  Well, it turns out, me, as I was obviously not in my right mind.

*I’m adding this post to the #Iwouldliketo linky on And 1 More Makes 3. Muddle on over and check it out!*

Just a Mommy Muddling

Decide

 

I’m thinking it’s probably about time I get back to something…something that more resembles me, the person I lost a few months ago…again. I’m a mommy muddling my way through life with lots of ups and downs…like the bipolar II kind and the major depression kind and the fibromyalgia kind and the anxiety kind, to name a few. I muddle through things like sickness (my own and others) and taking care of several children that range from small to big (a couple of which are on the autism spectrum and all of which are unique and wonderful in their own difficult and also fabulous ways). I do this with my unbelievably patient and loving husband by my side. Despite that, I often feel alone and my muddling is sometimes struggling instead.

But here I am, ready to do something for me. I need a space to muddle around and say what I really feel, what I really want to say and what I need to say but sometimes can’t. I’m an anonymous mommy right now, because some of the truth and irrational thoughts and real-life stuff I’m gonna say may not be something I want to share or to be shared with my immediate family or friends. I want that freedom right now.

So, it’s time. It’s time I do some things for me so that I can be a better, healthier me and I can eventually be a me that I’ll be proud of again, and maybe others will too.