Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth." Genesis 9:13

Monday, September 09, 2013

The benefits of 8 years of one therapist

Sometimes I question whether staying with Dr. Mind is the best thing. Usually I know without a doubt that it is because I have learned to trust him and have responded very well to his treatments over all these years. Sometimes it is really frustrating when he can read me too well. I was really angry last week and he knew it although I was not saying it. I spent a lot of time writing out a bunch of questions about several things that have bothered me in the last few months with him, particularly that he has been increasingly confrontational. My computer refuses to print with my printer for a reason I have yet to understand (Windows 8? I don't know. I installed the driver and it says it is recognized but it won't print). So I had to talk. Had I not spilled lithium all over his office it would have been easier but I did and it took a while to clean up because it scattered. I had 2 weeks of meds out so that if I can't make it next week because of my niece's surgery I'd be ready. I explained that I had spent days waiting to talk about my niece's problem only to learn that nobody had thought to tell me they were closed for Labor Day so I had to wait days more and that I knew he hadn't know how huge the issue felt by the end of all that waiting. I questioned the way some things were said and if the intention was the way I had interpreted it. I asked why a lot. I left feeling a lot better. He really did not back down from much of what he said although he did agree the timing may have been off. He explained a lot and that helped. It also helped to disagree in spots and know that I had said what I needed to even if he didn't really accept my answers. He did tell me that he worries about me because I have less fight than I used to. Some of that was undoubtedly because I didn't get angry last week, or didn't admit it. But it's also because something has changed. I haven't figured out how to change it although I know it is true. I think I just don't know what I'm fighting for sometimes. For years I fought as hard as I could to work. And now that is gone and I'm not in a place that work of any kind is reasonable because my sleep is so erratic and I can't be responsible about being somewhere. I hope that I get back to the place that worked best, when I slept from 11 pm to 4 AM consistently. But for now I'm very sedated but still fight to sleep and I need to sleep into the day. Even volunteering time doesn't work well when my sleep is this messed up. There are things I care about a great deal that are worth fighting for but they don't always need much fighting. There is a bug in my room the size of my smaller cat and THAT may be worth fighting....I think there is still a level that eats a lot of energy but that I don't talk about much where I am still fighting to want to live. I no longer want to hurt myself all the time but I feel that way because I work at it and it may not be apparent since I don't talk about it. I am anxious to talk to him more about this because he is right and yet I still think that I validly feel somewhat stuck in my life right now. I don't want to have a discussion where everything is about the things I have to fight for. I always hear about my nieces in that conversation, for example. And yes, they are worth fighting for but it's not the thing I need to give purpose to my life. Somewhat ironically I wrote my master's thesis on meaningfulness in life and now I have little of that. My nieces and various other things are immensely meaningful to me but it's not the same. My job was my mission, my reason for existing. (The bug is getting bigger. My huge cat is on the warpath. Hope he wins because squashing this thing would require repainting the room.) It's the I don't have something to do every day that really matters part that is hard. But at least he finally said it because I haven't known how and I think that my inability to say it has come across wrong. It's been really hard for me to say things the way I mean sometimes lately, something I'm assuming is related to depression and lack of sleep, and that's caused misunderstandings everywhere. So anyway, I benefitted today from those 8 years in that I was able to tell him what I thought and that is not something I do easily. I will admit and need to admit to him that sometimes it's also hard because why solve problems with him if he's just going to leave. I think that's a fairly questionable thing now but it could and may well happen and I am not going to know for a long time if it is happening. And yet making it so I can get through that kind of transition is so hard. And I don't want to cry so enough of that. The funny story of the day: When I saw Dr. Brain she increased my Neurontin dose a bit. I'd lowered it because of being on topomax but that drug is on hold until my niece is recovered from surgery and I'm not needing to be alert. It is helping me sleep better. I have a long history of sleepwalking, especially when I'm stressed and heavily medicated. This afternoon my mom wanted to know what caused the really loud noise that woke her at 4 AM. I was really confused because I knew I was asleep and then I remembered. About then I woke up (thought I did) needing to pee and feed my cat. I grabbed the cat when I walked past where she was sleeping on my bed (apparently) and proceeded to sleepwalk myself right into the door which banged into the closet door that is behind it when the door is open. I let the cat go upon waking rubbing my forehead and then I assume I went to the bathroom and back to bed. I'm not sure that even smacking my head woke me fully. It didn't hurt. Poor cat has been a victim of sleepwalking before. Once I found her in the garage where I'd put her during a night. Another time I locked her in a basement. She just goes on sleeping all the time. She probably thinks it is normal after so many years. Copyright 2006 www.masterofirony.blogspot.com


Jean Grey said...

Do you have any dreams? When I was on disability, I just had this loss of identity. I think if I had to do it again, I would try to be a writer- even if I didn't get published much, didn't make much, I would be a writer. Or I'd do more beekeeping with my dad- get more bees, and be a beekeeper. Or I'd hike the Appalachian trail. (section hike it)

As for sleep, the best thing for my sleep was work. I never slept regular hours before I worked. Even in school, I didn't. Of course my ambian also helps.

Michal Ann said...

SOOO glad you're working things out with Dr. Mind and seeing the great benefit of your long relationship. 8 YEARS!!

You wrote:

"I will admit and need to admit to him that sometimes it's also hard because why solve problems with him if he's just going to leave. I think that's a fairly questionable thing now but it could and may well happen and I am not going to know for a long time if it is happening."

I hope you'te not waiting for the worst case scenario but take full advantage of the opportunity to solve every problem you can! The things you learn will benefit you in every area of life, I think. It's not just a matter of your personal relationship with Dr. Mind but coping skills and processing will be of lasting help to you. Don't let the 8 years be "wasted" because of worry for the future.

As I have posted in my kitchen "Wherever you are be ALL there." It's a hard one for me so I thought I'd share it in case it encourages "good mental hygiene" for you, too.

Back to the profound Serenity Prayer (full version,

God grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change
Courage to change the things I can
And wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time
Enjoying one moment at a time
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace
Taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world
As it is, not as I would have it
Trusting that He will make all things right
If I surrender to His Will
So that I may be reasonably happy in this life
And supremely happy with Him
Forever and ever in the next.


Lots of love and many prayers,