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The Borrower and the Hulk..

on February 22, 2017

Anastacia, (the singer had hits in the early 2000’s) had a particular song ‘Sick and tired’ and that song hasn’t really struck that much of a chord until today. I mean it was a great song back in the day but that song jumped into the forefront of my brain earlier, whilst sat in the bath of all places. The line of “I’m sick and tired, of always feeling sick and tired” hit me like a bus.

That line, if i were to personify it, has been like a borrower. You know them tiny people that live in the skirting board or whatever. Always there but never quite seen or heard because everyone else is normal size. That borrower has been whispering them words for a while now but I haven’t really heard/listened to them. Today however, that little borrower must have eaten some magic ‘big pills’, turned into the hulk and shouted that line in my face. 

I’M SICK AND TIRED, OF ALLLLWWWAAAYYYSSSS BEING SICK AND TIRED!!!!

The borrower had obviously become fed up of being ignored and needed to be seen and heard! But I’m glad it showed up. It made my brain connect some dots and made me realise something I was trying my hardest to ignore. The fog that is depression is slowly creeping back in. 

It’s never completely disappeared but I’d say in the last 6 months or so, it’s only been every so slightly misty as opposed to full on thick, black, ‘you need your full beam and fog lights on to see through it’ fog. 

I thought it was getting a little darker outside just after Christmas and thought I best nip this in the bud now so I went to see a counsellor. It always makes me feel a bit guilty going to see someone as I feel that talking about myself for 45mins is a bit over indulgent. Or sometimes I don’t get to say the things I really want to say because the logical side of my brain is telling me it’s just a feeling and not reality and not to bother anyone with my neurotic thoughts. Nevertheless, I took the first step (for what feels like the thousandth time) to tackle it bit by bit. That being said, the “counsellor” spoke about herself more than what I consider appropriate given the nature of her position and then called me Lisa.. My name is Laura. I think some counsellors (or at least this one) can be more harming then healing. It made me reaffirm my thinking that no one really gives a shit and they’re just going through the motions and letting me go on. My best friend said that to me once. Well she’s obviously not a best friend of mine anymore to say the least, but for all the years I valued her support as she was always there for me (via email, she lives in Inverness, bit of a trek to where I am) and I was always there for her when she was in the throws of an eating disorder,  told me, quite matter of factly that she was ‘going through the motions with me, and just letting me talk until I just ran out of steam’

I felt winded when she said that. I felt like scolded child that was cowering under the words she had just said. I opened up to someone who I thought genuinely was willing to hear how I was feeling, but it  turns out that she knew I’d shut up and stop going on about it all eventually. So needless to say, I find it really hard to talk about how I’m feeling and so I try to bury it. Pretend everything is fine.

 I am, what they call, ‘functionally depressed’. I don’t lay in bed for days crying  (anymore!) I don’t always look bedraggled and haven’t stopped showering or bathing. I still put on a bit of makeup everyday and smile when I go to work but if I’m honest, outwardly it’s all an act. If I could indulge myself a few days/weeks of being in bed and feeling sorry for myself until the fog lifts slightly then I would , but I can’t.  I can’t let it win. I also can’t let it win because then people really would know. Am I scared of people really knowing what’s wrong with me? Yes. Petrified in fact.

I sometimes think how people at alcoholics anonymous might feel when they’re at a support group, stand up and say “Hi I’m Steve, and I’m an alcoholic” and everyone would say in unison “Hi Steve!!” and then would welcome him into a group that gave him a sense of belonging and he could breathe a sigh of relief because he said the words out loud in front of people that understood him.

I don’t know if that actually happens but if it does, I bet it’s a weight off the mind actually admitting you have a problem. Liberating in fact. I can’t do that. 

A select few of my friends know snippets of ‘the fog’ but it’s literally only things that I feel I have to tell them for fear of them thinking I’m a horrible, ignorant person and that I only want to socialise or have any involvement with them when it suits me. That is not the case. I hate myself for not being able to hold a conversation very long with them or at all – or turning down an invite of a night out or whatever because I’m absolutely crippled with anxiety and I end up in bed feeling like im needing a week of sleep for even thinking I could go out. Sometimes I can swing dramatically the other way (I’d take that mood over this one any day) where I feel I can take on the world, I can’t stop talking, I’m overly excited about everything and anything and genuinely loving life. No I’m not bipolar by the way. Doctor said my swings between high and low aren’t extreme enough to be bipolar..😑 but what can they do to help? Evidently not a lot.🖒….🖕

In short, I’m absolutely exhausted. 

I see that there seems to be a lot in the media these days about mental health which can only be a good thing ?? I guess it’s easy for me to be pessimistic about it as I’ve not felt like I’ve had the help Ive needed, or more importantly I don’t feel I can ask for help so it’s as bit of a double edged sword really. Can’t get help if you don’t ask for it. But when I don’t know what I need, it’s hard to know where to look. But the one thing that is really boiling my blood at them moment  (now this is just my opinion, and I hope it would help someone if they really needed it) is the amount of statuses I see on Facebook “I’m always here to listen #mentalhealthmatters. Copy and paste this to show that if anyone needs to talk, you’re not alone”

Does anyone else find this patronising or is it just me because I’m reluctant to talk to someone? I guess it just says a lot about the ‘friends’ I keep on Facebook as the people who I see put this on, wouldn’t even stop and say hello in the street if I saw them let alone welcome me to have and chat with. I really should have a Facebook cull!!

It definitely is an agenda that needs more attention, but what the answer is I don’t know and I’ve been a sufferer for the last 15 years on and off.

But in an attempt to end this post on a more of a positive note, I feel considerably calmer writing this down. Maybe I need to do this more. I’m not doing this for ‘likes’ or shares because quite frankly I couldn’t give a shit if no one reads this. But if anyone does, and thinks ‘hey, I know exactly how you feel’ then join my support group..I’ll start it off.

Hi, my name is Laura and I suffer with depression..

….and exhale

Xx

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