Monday, November 20, 2017

Diagnoses and empty bottles

I am still managing things a moment at a time. Sort of the bare minimum to keep going, but I am actually managing that. Like I am getting up by 11 everyday. I am eating most meals. I am running errands and going places with my parents. I am not going to bed before 11. I am exhausted and overwhelmed, but I am managing.

I had a psychiatrist appointment today that I was dreading. I missed my last appointment because I was exhausted and had a headache.. this was before detox. She called shortly before I got out of hospital and left a voicemail asking how I was doing because I missed the appointment. I never called back because by then I had already made another appointment, and I just didn't want to explain at that point what had happened. She mentioned it today and I just said that I basically wasn't functioning at that point. I explained about detox. I explained that they changed my meds. I lied a bit about my drinking.

She asked if I had any other questions or comments.. so I brought up something that's been bothering me. My discharge paperwork from the hospital has my diagnoses listed a couple places.. and I am not sure which is the diagnosis of that psychiatrist and which might be the diagnosis from the ER. Anyway, in one spot it lists major depressive disorder, which is my usual diagnosis.. well, it's major depressive disorder, recurrent, severe. It mentions alcohol use disorder, which is obvious. Then in one spot it lists Bipolar 1. I have NEVER been diagnosed Bipolar 1. I have had doctors go back and forth over the past 10 years about whether I have treatment resistant depression or bipolar 2 with hypomania, but I have never had a true manic episode.. so this bothered me.

Anyway, I pointed it out to the doctor and asked her about her opinion. In the hospital, I had been a bit upset that the psychiatrist said the priority was relapse prevention and not depression.. like the alcoholism was the primary problem. I ranted to at least one person about how the depression predates the alcohol use by about a decade. I self medicated with alcohol. I was pretty broken, so I just took whatever meds he chose to give me. Today, my doctor brought up a diagnosis that hasn't really been mentioned since around 2007.. borderline personality disorder. She took out her copy of the DSM 5 and read the diagnostic criteria to me. I fit about 7 out of 9 currently, and I have met all of them at some point in those past 10 years (2007 is when I was first put inpatient for suicidal thoughts and when I was in treatment for bulimia the first time). She says that it often gets confused with bipolar.. the emotional instability. In the hospital this time, I was basically alternating between joking and laughing with other patients (which was more normal happy than it was manic) with severe depression or anxiety (sobbing, worrying, or no motivation to do anything but stare into space). My mom attributes any manic behavior (fidgeting, rapid speech) to anxiety and not mania. The current medication is meant to even that out.

I suppose it doesn't matter what the diagnosis is if the treatment is working. I have generally always been on a mood stabilizer as well as an antidepressant, which could treat either depression or bipolar. So I have been told before the diagnosis doesn't matter. Now, I am on a larger dose of Seroquel (quetiapine) and an antidepressant, which can be a treatment for depression or borderline or whatever. I don't know why I care so much about the label. I think because the treatment generally hasn't worked, and I have it in my head that if they could just all pick the right diagnosis, they could finally fix it. Except, I don't think I know what fixed feels like. This has been going on so long that I only know that I don't feel right now. I do feel better than before the hospital, but I am having to fight to believe that I can maintain this. I of course also got the talk about how DBT is important and AA is important and basically I have to do the rest of the work. Oh and alcohol is only one more thing for the medication to fight against, so that won't help.

I wish I could say I wasn't drinking. I really have been struggling with that, and it's dumb. I haven't been drinking enough to do anything except convince myself I am ok. I have taken a few swigs of cooking wine. I have drained those last drops from all the empty bottles in the trunk of my car. All just to convince myself I was fine.. somehow not drinking is so scary that a few drops of vodka and that taste or that burn in my mouth is enough to make it ok. I logically know it isn't doing anything. I finally bought a bottle today.. and yeah. I went to an AA meeting mildly intoxicated. It was a speaker, and it was helpful. She talked about how she didn't have a progressive history of alcoholism. There was never a "first drink." It was always about being drunk. That's how it is/was for me. I never liked the taste. It was never social. It was always about changing the way I felt. It was never about making me happy. It was always about being numb or blacked out or otherwise removing feelings. It still is. I know that therapy is supposed to teach me another way to get through bad feelings, but I worry that any feeling is intolerable for me.

I did finally mention briefly in conversation with my parents the worry about my health insurance next month. They said they will pay for it if I can't. They don't want that to be a factor in me continuing treatment (my meds, my psych, therapy). I had wanted to ask them because I made this DBT appointment and then realized that I might not have insurance or any way to continue. I mean even if I get the bank job, I won't get insurance immediately. I just didn't want to ask since they're probably paying for the movers to get stuff out of my apartment.. I am finally making some progress packing. I owe them a lot of money now, and I can't pay it all back immediately because I owe money to a lot of hospitals and such too.. but I honestly need the insurance if I am going to make any progress now. I might be able to find other ways of paying in the future, but it would be too easy to abandon all of it because I can't pay.

Anyway.. this is a lot of rambling. I am just lately bothered by the whole idea that I have a severe mental illness, I cannot say with 100% certainty what it is, and I have no specific cause. People always want to suspect abuse, but I have nothing to blame but luck or fate or myself. I have an addiction, and the cause there is my mental illness and general inability to regulate or tolerate any feeling. I now have to set all that aside and focus on the present and what I can do. I can take my meds. I can go to appointments. I can pack up my apartment. I can get out of bed everyday and go to bed every night, and I can try to manage. That is what I can do. I cannot change the past. I cannot predict the future. I can only take it a moment at a time.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Breakdown and the aftermath

So things got progressively worse after my last post.. like basically never getting out of bed except to eat. I wasn't even sleeping. I was just staring into space. Occasionally, I would get up and move to the couch to watch Netflix. I went to meetings but only as an excuse to stop for liquor.

Well.. on the 8th, I was supposed to start a job and go for the assessment to start DBT. I woke up and I could barely eat a bowl of cereal I was so tired. I didn't go to work. I could tell my parents were unhappy. I finally got up and my dad came home from work and said they were taking me to the appointment. They drop me off and I start filling out paperwork.. and I just couldn't. It was just too much. I left and my parents were in the car outside. I got in and burst into tears. I tried to explain, and they didn't get it.

I tried to say I was tired. They said I wasn't tired, I was drunk. We had this big argument in the car. I ended up telling them to either let me go back to my apartment or take me to the hospital. They said I was too drunk to walk, I definitely couldn't drive. They didn't even take me home to pack because I clearly couldn't pack.

I went to the ER. I didn't think I was that drunk, but I know they wouldn't let me leave until my blood alcohol dropped.. they eventually transferred me to another hospital that had a chemical dependency unit to detox. This was several hours later and my blood alcohol was still .12. The nurse did my intake and honest to God had to hold my arm as I walked to bed because I could hardly walk and tucked me into bed. I was forbidden from getting up unsupervised.

The next day was miserable. I had to use a fucking walker at first because nobody trusted me to walk. The patients were so nice though.. like.. amazing. I didn't sleep the first night and had hardly slept all week. I finally saw the psychiatrist who totally changed my meds. The next night I slept like the dead. Still.. I kept having crying spells including one where I was hyperventilating. The tech kept telling me it was just withdrawal. Finally, I wandered out of my room and another patient was decent enough to find my nurse who gave me more Librium. I was alternating laughing and crying the first few days.

By the end of my week there.. I was better? I actually taught a group and was made "team leader" and given the task of helping new patients. I had been paranoid my parents wouldn't let me come back, but they seem to have.. I mean I am back at their house now. My mom did my laundry while I was gone.

I checked my voicemail while in the hospital because that seemed safer than checking when I got home.. since this is usually a big trigger. I got 2 calls from a recruiter at a bank asking me about interest in a job. I called and she basically said if I apply for this position, she will send me to interview with the manager.. I said it would be a few a days because I was in hospital. Anyway.. she seemed ok with it (she seemed surprised I called from the hospital). I applied.. so we will see. It's a better job than what I passed up. I still have lots of problems to deal with, but for now.. I am doing better.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Animals

I went from unable to post or get out of bed to posting repeatedly? I don't know. I just feel like these thoughts are my current purpose.

Does anyone feel like animals understand them better than humans? I feel that way, and I don't know what that means.

In high school Mudge watched my self harm. She sat and kept me company as I questioned my life. Recently, I was seriously considering taking pills. Some pills. Odd lay on my chest and stared into my eyes. He is always there in those moments and Nermal is sleeping by my feet to remind me peace is possible. Then tonight I felt I'll... I felt sweaty and wondered about my heart. Then a guy's dog at AA kept nuzzling my hand. The dog has done it before, and I was just in love. It's like he knows I am sick. He knows I need love. The cats know I need to be reminded that someone cares.

I had thought I should be a nurse, but now I think I am meant to care for animals. I honestly feel they know what I need more than people. My parents don't know to come to me, but they do. I have been questioning my purpose and I am drunk, but maybe this matters?

So I guess if you don't know, get a pet. A cat or a dog will know better than a therapist. They will remind you that you're needed. They would miss me. It would make a difference. Someone would be hurt. My cats don't react to my parents like me. They would be sad.

I also know that you who read this care, so thank you. I really am trying to live.

Funny or sad?

I am questioning why I exist. At home, I would be in bed with cats eating whatever doesn't need effort and drinking. At my parents, I was awake most of the night just tossing and turning and checking to see if my mom was up. I am "recovered" but ashamed to eat at night because I am hungry. Then I wait until my dad leaves for work to drink the vodka in my car to maybe sleep. I was too afraid that one of them would hear the door if I went at night.

Now I am eating and wondering if my mom will wake up. Will she say anything? I honestly don't care if I get kicked out. I will just die if they don't want me. I don't think I was meant to be.. but drunk I can just watch Netflix and forget. Does anyone else feel they weren't meant for this world?

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

The good, the bad

I haven't known what to write this week. Things since I got home have been... fucked up? That's the best way to describe it because there is good and bad and basically I am going moment by moment.

The bad is that I am depressed. I am barely sleeping. I had a horrible headache for 3 days that had me in bed covering my eyes and only venturing out for cereal or English muffins. I don't know if it was a migraine or the rubbing alcohol I have been drinking. I have slept maybe a couple hours this week and honestly wanted to die this morning because I was up all last night.

I have been watching Greys Anatomy all day, which is what I do when I don't want to exist. I showered and dressed and then watched greys Anatomy and sobbed.

The thing is that I have done some amazing things. I hired someone to clean my apartment. Admittedly, I basically let them in and lay in bed.. but still. You can see the floor. I got a job. It's just at Walgreen's, but it's something. I turned down a job at a restaurant that for some reason terrified me and a few hours later got a call from Walgreen's. I also managed to call about DBT. I have an assessment next week.

I just don't know how to sustain this. I was so exhausted today that I drank hand sanitizer. I was shaking enough that I bought vodka before AA. I was so tired and depressed this morning that I lay in bed trying to think of how to OD until Odd decided to lay on my chest and stare into my eyes. I just couldn't do it then. Plus, my meds are locked up. I just honestly wonder if I should just be locked away. I don't know if I can do life. Yet, I am doing the best I can. I am somehow alive. I just wish I wanted it. I just wish I wasn't so tired. I wish I could hide in bed until I can face the world.

But yes.. everything is fucked up. My body is probably unhealthy from not eating and drinking rubbing alcohol. My mind just isn't right. My heart just isn't in it. So I am watching Grey's in bed. Tomorrow I will try again.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

I lie and I lie and I lie

Well, I am home again. My parents house. This week was not fun.

Last Thursday my psychiatrist basically insisted I go inpatient. It was more or less implied that if I didn't go voluntarily, I would be forced. I was taken by ambulance from that building to the psych ward at the same hospital, which was a bit ridiculous. Then it was discovered that she didn't bother to call ahead, and they had no bed. So I was put back in the ambulance and taken to the ER. I was there for like 8 hours. My potassium was low as usual. I was then told I was being transferred to another hospital.. and I was a bit of a bitch about it.. threatened to pull out my IV. But the whole point was to go to a new hospital and not be sent to one I have been to 3 other times.

In the psych ward.. I was crazier than usual. I tried to sign myself out AMA and was threatened with being court ordered. I then convinced the doctor to let me go Monday. Well, my parents got really angry about that. They visited and said some pretty horrible stuff.. like bringing up how much money they spent on me.. and my mom stormed out (which she later said was because of my dad not me) and my dad told me she found alcohol in my room and how much it hurt her. I cried and became more suicidal.

So I began simultaneously to develop a detailed plan to get out of the hospital and kill myself. I somehow managed to convince them that because of the fight with my parents, I should be discharged to my own apartment. I convinced my parents not to visit Monday, so they wouldn't know I got out. And then more details I won't go into. I lied to the doctor and had her convinced that I was better. She actually put in the discharge order. Then the social worker said that they should at least call my parents, and I just couldn't lie. I confessed that I had a plan. The doctor was shocked and upset that I had lied. I don't think it's that odd to lie? But I ended up staying 2 more days and agreeing to go to my parents house. My parents agreed I could come back if I didn't bring alcohol home again. This whole speech about it being my last chance.

So I am out. I am not as suicidal. I mostly am not convinced I want to get sober. I am just taking it a day at a time. I am still freaking out about the apartment and jobs and everything, but I am not dealing with it tonight. Tonight I am trying to take it easy.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Just FYI

Going back inpatient. Psychiatrist is letting me go voluntarily, but it is pretty clear leaving isn't an actual option. So I will update when I get out