Thursday, 28 April 2016

Hi, I'm Struggling.

My last few blog posts have been all light hearted and focusing on things like beauty or books which is great but as I was reading through other people's blog post I realised that I haven't written a post about my mental health.

The whole reason I started this blog was as an outlet for venting my frustrations/feelings and sharing my thoughts and facts about my mental illnesses because I feel like it's so important to share your journeys. 
Who knows who might need that little reassurance that they are not alone.

So, hi.

A lot has happened in the last year.
If you've read my blog for a while you will know that in March last year after years of feeling unstable, unhappy and so fragile I was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder. 
The relief of that diagnosis was so reassuring and brought me so much peace. I felt like I could finally breathe.
I had a condition that could be treated.
The realisation that I could go on to lead a normal life filled with love and hope filled me with a joy I haven't felt before. I have always felt so uncertain and worried for the future but in that moment, I had hope.

I was prescribed Seroquel m/r (which is an anti psychotic on a moderate release dose which helps balance mood swings and lessened my anxiety tonnes). I began to feel so much better in myself.
For the first time in 3 years, I could leave my house without wanting to vomit of pass out and I could get on public transport without feeling the pressure of everyone staring at me. 
I have always had social anxiety which is related to Bipolar. It has always been a big demon for me. It controlled the way I thought, the way I felt and the way I carried myself. I was reclusive and agoraphobic for 4 years but all that seemed to fade to the background.
I was starting to feel happiness and having a diagnosis really helped to give me a sense of belonging (Sounds stupid but it did). 
I felt like I could finally say that yes, I'm ill but I'm doing the best I can.

Then just a year later (in Janurary this year) I got a new psychiatrist despite arguing and pleading with them to keep my old one. Within 5 minutes of meeting me for the first time he wanted to pull my diagnosis and send me for another assessment with two psychologists.
I left that appointment feeling so deflated and frustrated. 
How can he pass a judgement on me after meeting me once? 

But I stuck with it. After all, he is the professional.
I attended the appointment where I had an in depth assessment and talked through some of my issues (well the ones they asked about) and they said they were backing my psychiatrist in the belief that I had been misdiagnosed. 
I was so disheartened and felt even worse when they told me what I should go home and research: Personality Disorders.

Now this came up before and upon researching it, I found that there is no pill to take that can aid you. I've pretty much tried all those on offer and they gave me nothing.
I cried. I cried a lot.

By March (exactly a year after getting my diagnosis) I went back to my psychiatrist for his follow up and opinion.
He told me the words I didn't want to hear: that he is going ahead and scraping my diagnosis and replacing it with anxiety and "traits" of personality disorders.
He also told me that I would have to come off my tablets as they aren't licensed for anxiety.
Those words filled me with dread.
I left what was supposed to be an hour appointment after 15 minutes after speaking to a cold, nasty man that couldn't give two shits about me (which he made blatantly obvious).

I left with no real idea of where I was going or what I was going to do.
It took 3 years to get a diagnosis and it took him just a month to remove it.
My heart was broken.

So for the last month I have dealt with the nasty side effects of coming off Quetiapine including insomnia that is so bad. You're exhausted but cannot sleep regardless of what you do. I've also had really itchy skin, bad dreams, uncontrollable shakes in my hands at random moments, a funny appetite. It has been a barrel of laughs here. Alongside that I have been suffering bouts of panic and dread, feeling unbearable waves of anxiety and just having moments of feeling so overwhelmed.
I have felt so miserable and unstable in the last couple of weeks.
It's almost like a physical ache that really drags me down. I feel like I'm wearing a chain around my brain that's constantly pulling me towards the ground. I have tried to tell myself that I'll be okay but this last week has been particularly tough.
I have also spent the whole time on the verge of tears.
I can't handle the uncertainty of it all. The constant fear of what's to come. Facing the fact that you might never get the help you need no matter whether you ask for it or not.

I have just received a referral to the ADAPT (Anxiety, depression, affective disorders, personality disorders and trauma) team which gives me some hope.

In the last month, I have started to feel the way I felt when I was a 17 year old girl.
I am struggling.
The other day, the door knocked and I was so anxious about it that I couldn't open it. I physically couldn't open the door to a delivery man I have seen on about 100 occasions. This hasn't happened to me for a year and I felt so stupid and embarrassed afterwards that I just broke down.


WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?!


I have done everything right. I asked for help. I waited. I did everything they told me to and then they changed their minds!
How much longer do I have to wait before they help me?
 How many more assessments do I need to go through before they work it out?
I can't be THAT complex can I?

It's no wonder people give up.

Lots of Love
Loubee
xx 


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