A Christmas Wish….

It’s that time of year where most are putting the finishing touches to their preparations for Christmas day. By my clock, at the time of typing these words, there are 9 minutes to go, before it officially starts. Quite honestly, I am dreading it!

What so many people forget, is that Christmas is not all cheer and laughter for everyone! There are so many people who are on their own for Christmas. People without family to go to. Parents who can’t be with their children. Children who can’t be with their parents. People who couldn’t afford Christmas. People who just want to forget Christmas because they will be spending it alone.

I am lucky this year. I may not have my children, or hubby around, but I have a friend who has very kindly invited me to spend the day with her and her family. She is like family to me anyway, so for that, and for the fact that they are kind enough to include me on what should be a family day, I am extremely grateful. But not everyone is so lucky, as I have not been so lucky in recent years.

My Christmas wish this year, is that people spare a thought for everyone who may be on their own, or suffering in some way, by not being with their families, or the people they love. I just want those people to feel loved, and feel cared about. That is all I ask.

I’ll keep it short and sweet, and leave it at that.

Merry Christmas everyone, and if I don’t make it back on here between now and then, have a great new year too.

H x

Nightmare Neighbours…

It would seem that I am quite literally living in a never ending nightmare.

I live in a flat. A council flat no less. It’s a crappy little 3 bedroom place, where the 2nd and 3rd bedrooms are hardly fit to be called as such. Each room has enough room for the beds and very little else.

The biggest problem I have though, and I have had this very same problem for all of the years I have been living here, and that’s 7 years in total now, is the noise that comes from downstairs, and more recently from next door too. It is hell.

The first lot of neighbours used to blast music out, and while I’m partial to a bit of loud music now and then, this wasn’t now and then, it was virtually all day every day.

The next lot of neighbours, while not big music fans, they had a nasty habit of slamming doors behind them wherever they went in their flat. Not just one of them, all of them would do it, and it seemed like there was always someone awake at every point of the day. The next lot were just obnoxiously loud in everything. They didn’t talk, they shouted, they had a dog locked in the hallway, and a dog locked in the shoe box sized kitchen, who would just howl and bark all day when alone, and would bark a lot even when the neighbours were in. Mostly, I would assume, from being trapped in one very small space constantly.

And my most recent nightmare neighbours are taxi drivers, who argue a lot. So I’m frequently party to I lot of shouting where the use of the ‘f’ word is so regular, I’m surprised I’m not yelling it in what little sleep I get. When coming in from taxi jobs, even late at night, there’s no consideration when it comes to slamming doors, or other drivers being loud outside the property, and they have 4 or 5 cars outside at any one time. Not to mention the drifting smell of cannabis that invades my property from downstairs. Now, I have dabbled with weed as a teenager, as a lot of kids do, and even a little (believe it or not, under the instruction of a Doctor) but I haven’t touched the stuff in over 10 years, and if I wanted to, I would. I don’t need the stench of it flowing through my home!

Now when I get my yearly gas service, if they ask me if I’m the one smoking it, I will not be shy about pointing them in the right direction that’s for sure. I am already at risk of losing my home, without someone else threatening it unnecessarily.

Something inside is telling me that it is time to start making diaries of all the noise again, which will help if I pass it on to the council, but the issue I then have, is that if they were to go, there would be essentially the same issue with the next lot of tenants, and the ones after that, and so on.

It is not solely down to the inconsiderate neighbours, and I use that term simply because they are aware of this main problem, and that is that these properties were never adequately soundproofed. This has been admitted directly to me by a member of staff in the relevant department, but the comment that followed was that basically although they know they are not adequately soundproofed, they weren’t willing to do anything about it either. What can you do when that’s the response from the only people who can do anything about the problem?

What I need is to somehow obtain just enough money to buy the property and soundproof it myself. Problem solved! Now to work on the small lottery win I’ll need to make it happen…

H x

In Need Of A Miracle…

So things are pretty shit right now. So much so that even hubby is avoiding me! He would never admit that he is avoiding me, but I know that he is, and I cannot say that I blame him, however two days in a row where there is no contact from lunch time until very late at night when you’re usually in contact pretty much all day every day, would indicate to me some level of avoidance. Again, I cannot say that I blame him.

Right now I’m at the point of giving up. I’m balancing on a very unstable ledge, and this time I might not be able to save myself. I’m on the verge of losing it all. Quite literally, everything. But the terrible thing is that there is no one out there who is going to help. No one to lend a hand, throw me a lifeline, or even just to listen right now. My only way to vent and try and make sense of it all in my head is to write it down here. It will take, quite literally, a miracle to get me out of this, and I am rapidly running out of time.

My depression has taken over, and the crisis team that should have been in touch a couple of weeks ago, has been nowhere to be seen. I am so far behind in my rent, I’m expecting a notice to seek possession letter to come through any day. I have already had a letter threatening court action over my council tax. I am severely behind in my gas and electricity payments and I haven’t been able to pay a water bill in what seems like forever. If that notice for to seek possession letter comes through, I will lose the roof over my head, and will quite literally be living on the streets. There is no help to seek for this, there is nothing anyone can do. No amount of budgeting will solve this problem, because there simply isn’t enough income to budget with. I am lost, with nowhere to turn.

I have self harmed today, and I still feel the need to do it again to resist the urge to go any further, but quite honestly, I just want to sleep and never wake up. I don’t know what else to do. This is all just the tip of the iceberg, and there is nothing more I can say about any of it.

H x

Black Dog Back To Bite Me Again.

I haven’t been able to write for some time now. I wasn’t physically capable for a while. Mostly medication induced. All I care to say in that subject is, Seroquel…. stay away!!! I can’t even say that I turned into a zombie. Zombie’s are still capable of some things at least. I was virtually a vegetable. I became incapable of making a coffee! Me! Not being able to make a caffeinated beverage! I would say that it was on the verge of becoming hazardous to someone’s health, but since I was incapable of making a cup of coffee, how capable was I of hurting someone for coffee, really? Safe to say that it was a very unpleasant experience, and that is just the tip of the iceberg. Of course the psychiatrist is going to be none too pleased that I am no longer taking it, but I also think that the almost constant chest pain, being unable to pee, the constantly snuffling nose to the point where I still have a cut up there from blowing it all of the time, hallucinations, serious lack of balance, confusion, shortness of breath, palpitations, dry mouth, increased numbness in my hands and feet, and the feeling of needing to over eat constantly, (to name a few things) was enough grounds to stop.

Of course, it was also pointed out to me after stopping the seroquel, that I was having a manic episode. Not much fun after a while I can tell you. I was very much convinced that the doctors were trying to kill me. Especially my psychiatrist. He was the ring leader, and that’s why he prescribed me the seroquel… to bump me off, and the chest pain was the start of it killing me, so I had come off it in time. Now, I don’t like the man, sure, but trying to kill me?? Maybe that’s a little far fetched? Maybe?

I was even convinced that my GP was in on it, and that the only reason that my GP and I could get on, and could have an adult conversation when we disagreed on something, was to lull me into a false sense of security on behalf of the psychiatrist. One of only 4 half decent doctors I have crossed paths with in the whole of my area, and this is what I thought of him. The man lets me walk into his office, sit there effing and jeffing until I’ve got everything out of my system, and granted he usually sits there giggling at me while this is going on, which in turn makes me giggle also, but I like that about him. It means he’s human, and he knows he’s human. He knows that he’s one of us. He certainly doesn’t look down on me as though he thinks he’s better than me, or as though he thinks I’m stupid, because, although I hate to admit this, he has got me sussed out there, and knows that I like to pretend I’m a little more dumb than I actually am. My downfall there, is that I do not show my intelligence in the right situations.

As a result of my manic episode, I did come away with lots of goody’s though. Goody’s I cannot afford, nor can I return now I know I need to, but, I will justify it like this, I have no good clothes, so now I have a gorgeous dress. I have no decent shoes, so now I have some boots, and pretty, shiny red shoes, which means I have something different to wearing trainers all of the time. I have new makes up brushes, eye shadows, and a brand new red lipstick, to make me that little bit more me again, and also to push me into putting the war paint on more often. Canvases! I can start painting again. Always good to promote my creativity. I homemade, extra large, leather bound book with blank pages, for which I intend to write my life story in. A tablet PC. B+Very naughty of me. But, it will help me with writing etc. Like I said, it was too late to send any of them back, so I needed to justify it in my head.

Only now, I have gone to visit the other end of the scale. I was coping with that fine. I really was. However, I have been not so gently shoved too far down to the bottom of the mood scale, and it isn’t pretty down here. So much so, that I have actually self harmed for the first time in a long time. I know that I use tattoos to replace the self harming, but I have actually cut tonight, and what’s worse, is that because I’m already in so much pain, I didn’t feel a thing.

This is exactly the sort of thing that I want to one day be able to guide other people through, and quite honestly, I’m not sure if that first means I have to come out at the other end, or if my current experiences keep everything fresh enough in my mind to help more effectively. Only time will tell, but first I have to make it through this, and right now, I’m not so sure that I want to.

H x

Exhausted!

I haven’t felt as if I have been able to write in a while. Things have been really chaotic for me. Last month I had a period of psychosis which was particularly unpleasant. Since then, I have been trying my hardest to get things back on track. I haven’t really known where to start, but I am really trying.

I have some fantastic support, I cannot deny that. And if it weren’t for that support, I may well not have survived this episode. I wish to god, that I could say that some of this support was from the relevant healthcare professionals.  I have decided today that I do no like the new psychiatrist. I think I have given him a fair chance. Yesterday he did nothing but patronise me. In fact, I would go so far as to say that he was the one acting like a BPD, not me.

I have actually had several members of staff that I have worked with in mental health recently, say to me that I do not have an ounce of borderline in me. I agree with this. I agree with this, because I have researched and researched borderline personality disorder and it symptoms over and over again. I also agree with this, because having researched it so much. I have come to realise that my mother more than likely has BPD, and me and her couldn’t be more different.

I have an appointment with a psychologist today, and I was planning on going in there, as I usually do with these appointments, with an open mind, and reserving judgement for as long as I can. Quite honestly, I don’t feel as if I can do that today. I’m too exhausted. I’m ill anyway, and quite honestly, I feel like I’m wasting my breath. I have reached the point where I feel that all I can do, is suffer and deal with it on my own as I have always had to.

I guess we will have to see, but I’m not holding high hopes for this appointment.

Anyway, I have to go for now, so until I feel I can write again.

H x

Scary Steps, But Forward, Or Back?

Today, or rather yesterday, marks a new beginning for me. A rather scary new step has been taken. I accepted and started a new job. I fear this may be why I cannot sleep tonight, although I very much need to.

This job, while it will secure the roof over my head, it will make my health deteriorate, and I will not be able to make ends meet. Suddenly those episodes of paranoia where I believed the government were trying to kill me don’t seem so paranoid. I am determined to try and make it work somehow. I don’t know how, but it has to. As a victim of the dreadful bedroom tax, I do not have any choice. And the fact that a very old friend of mine stuck her neck out on the line to help me out and get me this job makes me all the more determined to make it work.

But while in one respect, a very big weight has lifted off of my shoulders, in another respect, another has taken it’s place. These are scary times we live in, and there is much to be afraid of. I know that somehow, I have no idea how, but somehow, it is time for me to focus my efforts on what I know I am good at, so that I may make positive life achievements through these, in hope that they will reflect positively on my life, so that things may get better for me, and I may struggle less, physically, mentally, and certainly financially.

I’m keeping this short and sweet as I need to sleep.

H x

August Mayhem

I have a lot of questions regarding some of the events of last month. I have been unable to really write due to being too ill, and too confused. Most, if not all of the questions cannot be answered by me, and I can honestly say that my local mental health team has a lot to answer for!

This is what I know.

I had 2 major psychotic episodes last month. One of them was a very public episode. While I have no idea of the full details of these episodes, I am aware of little snippets.

The first episode was a major paranoia episode. I know this because I wrote in a notebook exactly what was going through my head, so when I suddenly became aware that I had barricaded myself into my house, I at least knew why. The second, prior to it, I was tired. I hadn’t slept, and so on the Sunday morning I took a sleeping tablet. I woke after this at about lunch time, and I was fine, next thing I know, I woke in hospital and was told that I took a sleeping tablet overdose, but although I was aware of bits and pieces, I kept losing myself and I had NO control of what I was doing. This resulted in being picked up by the police twice, an attempt to walk to the nearest large bridge (which was 35 miles away) with no intention of jumping off, and god knows what else that I cannot remember.

My questions largely revolve around the second episode. The major question is that, if I was taken to see the psychiatrist, why was I allowed to be left on my own while having not snapped completely out of the episode.

I have to face the reality that these questions may never be answered, but my biggest hope is that finally, I will be taken more seriously by the mental health team in future because of this.

On a final note for this post, I know that my mental health is getting worse, and I know that there appears to be less and less time between each episode I have, and that scares me greatly.

Back In The Deep Dark Depths Of Hell…

… And I have a confession to make. It would appear, that after talking to some other people who suffer with mental illness, that a lot, not all, but a lot of people who suffer with self harm issues, more specifically cutting, like me, use getting tattoos or piercings to replace the self harming. I happen to think that if you’re into that sort of thing, it is a brilliant idea and a great way to prevent ourselves from ending up with a body full of horrid scars that we are ridiculously ashamed of.

The thing to be careful of, and this is where my confession comes in, is that my tattooist gets pretty booked up, and so there can be a fair wait to get in the chair, and this, as I have never told ANYONE before, causes me to seek refuge in another form of self harm. My problem is that if I don’t cut when I need to, I find myself binge eating. I’m doing it this very minute.

It can cause a lot of problems for anyone who does this. Obesity being the obvious one, and my eating is not regulated properly. I know nothing about binge eating as a mental health disorder, (actually, that’s not strictly speaking true, as I study mental health, I know a little), but I know my own body, and I know that I hold on to weight very easily, and the fact that I will binge for a while and then not eat for a while will not be helping my weight issues.

The other issue I have right now, is that I just want to get drunk. If I could, I’d be smashed right now. I’m not even sure what is going through my mind. I need help, but there is none available, and I can’t disturb anyone else who knows about me, as they’re few and far between, and all have important things on today.

I have to be strong and hold on. I know this, but putting that into practice is a different matter entirely.

H x

Lost, Scared and Alone.

I don’t even know where to begin right now. I’m so lost. I feel so alone, and so very scared. I’m sat alone in my house. You can’t call it a home. I sit here alone in my broken house, on my broken sofa, in a half decorated room with furniture I cannot stand and it feels empty and broken and lonely. It is not my home, it is just a place I have slept in for the last 6 and a half years. It will not be my home until I can find a way to make it look and feel how I want and need it too. I fear that will never happen. I fear I will lose this roof over my head before I can make it into a home. I do not have enough money to cover my rent and bills and to be able to eat. I do not have any money to finish decorating, or put carpet in my house or buy the things I need. My clothes are tatty and worn and cheap and make me feel like I’m a fraudster, because I am not even a shadow of the person I should be. Even in the midst of the false high’s of mania, I’m an still just an empty shell of who I should be.

I cannot find a job. I try everyday, phoning all of the places that are advertising on the jobcentre website. Even the one’s I know are likely to put me in hospital. I fear for my life right now. I fear for it greatly. I even wonder if I will make it through to the end of the day. It doesn’t feel like I will.

I’m just so lost and scared and alone.

Open Letter To David Cameron.

Dear Mr Cameron,

It is thanks to you that I am ashamed to call myself a British citizen! Oh god, I don’t even know where to begin. I’m so tired. So very, very tired. You’re twisted world of power and greed has left me with a choice between sacrificing my health in more ways than one, sacrificing seeing my children or sacrificing the roof over my head and winding up back on the streets.

I’m a very ill lady. I have quite the list of health problems. Your ATOS assessors have found this to be true, and say I’m unfit to work. But as I am also only allowed my children here part time due to one of these illnesses, according to your new “bedroom tax“, I should basically give up my right to even have them part time, because since they love away from me most of the time, having them over to stay is now a privilege that I should now have to pay over £100 a month for, as well as the travelling costs I incur because they live 25 miles away, and the food expenses on top of that. That in itself takes most of my benefit, and since the disability living allowance department only see fit to grant me the lowest amount possible for anxiety issues, and have chosen to ignore the worst of my mental health issues, and ignore my physical health issues altogether, that leaves me in a rather large bind.

Do you know, Mr Cameron, that as a direct result of your bedroom tax, you have worsened my mental and physical health problems under the stresses and strains of the new “bedroom tax”? Did you know, Mr Cameron, that even if I did decide to move to a smaller property, that this would then mean that not only do I lose access to my children, but I then lose access to my family and my entire support network, because to move out of my current home, the home I have lived in now for almost 7 years, I would have to move out of the area, because there are NO properties available in my area that are suitable for me. Tell me, Mr Cameron, how do I get out of that one?

Of course, I could get a job. There is the risk that, even if I am able to find someone that is willing to take on someone that suffers from severe depression, episodes of mania and even psychosis, extreme widespread pain, migraines, anxiety and panic attacks, nausea and vomiting, dizziness and falls, random numbness of the limbs, extreme fatigue, sleep disturbances, swelling of extremities, short term memory loss, concentration difficulties, spatial disorientation, calculation difficulties and other cognitive problems, trouble in communication through not being able to say the right words, frequent intense and realistic nightmares, stiffness in muscles and joints, muscle weakness, sciatica, changes in visual acuity, intolerance of medications, restless leg syndrome, being sensitive to temperature and heat and cold changes, palpitations, breathing difficulties, involuntary muscle spasms, non-cardiac chest pain that mimics a cardiac disorder, pelvic pain, dry eyes and mouth, heel pain, unusual and uncontrollable irritability, self harms and has suicidal thoughts and tendencies, I could then lose the job because of all of these problems. That is IF I find someone willing to take me on with all of that.

If I do find someone to take me on, and my goodness I would love to be back in work again, I run the risk of regular hospitalisation. Either from my mental or physical illness. I have already had to come off my medications, psych meds and all, because once I do find a job, I will no longer be able to afford these medicines, and the negative effects are already showing.

I actually cannot remember the last time I ate a nutritious meal. I cannot remember the last time I ate a full meal. I live off of snacks. The odd biscuit here, the odd tiny microwave “meal” there. No nutrition what-so-ever. I cannot buy salads or vegetables, because they do not last long enough, and once they have gone, I cannot afford to buy anything else to replace them until my next “payday” or maybe even the payday after that. So it has to be small snacks that will not go off quickly and that I can make last for as long as possible. Please think about that every time your wife cooks you a nice healthy meal, or you eat out at a restaurant.

There are thousands upon thousands of people who are in the same position as me. Don’t get me wrong, I know something had to be done, but not to the point of people suffering and losing their lives, surely? I certainly fear for my life. I really, truly do.

So I beg you Mr Cameron, I beg of you with everything I have left inside of me, please, PLEASE start thinking about the people who are suffering this torture, and do something to help us so that we don’t suffer any more. I know my words are redundant, but they needed to be spoken even if then fell on deaf ears.

Holly