I had to take a bit of an unplanned hiatus from, uh, everything, for a week. My forever-running bounty of psych issues got the better of me, things came to a head, and I really needed some help. Granted, I had been begging for help for weeks, but I kept being told to “just hang tight for a while” and “it’s really not that bad, Lydia”… and no, I wasn’t joking around, I needed help. I can’t say that my admission provided any sort of therapy, but I did switch from Geodon (which I wasn’t absorbing because it requires calories to be absorbed and I don’t exactly get many of those) to a really small dose of risperidone, which is working much, much better.
They say my particular psych issues can’t be helped by medicine. I very much beg to differ, because my experience is that the medication gives me enough of an emotional buffer that I feel more like tape than super glue, which is to say, every little thing doesn’t STICK to me nearly as intensely and I can shake things off much more easily. Before, every. Freaking. Little. Thing would send me sobbing for six hours and ready to jump out the nearest window. I simply felt like my entire world was over, every time something happened. I get– I GET– how trying that must be on others. The people that have stuck by me through this, after the way I’ve treated them… my goodness… they should be sainted. I can’t begin to fathom the amount of grace they have given me. But, no matter how trivial it must sound to others when I’m raging or sobbing for the seventeenth time that day, let me tell you something– it’s very real to me. In fact, it’s so real that I am sure that I will NEVER come out of that mood, this time, that this one is forever. And when one mood starts to run into the next… can you imagine how I feel? Like this is all I do, all I’ll ever do. Then I feel like I’m not good for anything else. Then… well, you can see where that heads.
But, medication now working in my system and lots of conversations with multiple amazing psych nurses and peer specialists (yes, this hospital had peer specialists, which were two guys who had been through this crap and made it out and recovered and now help others. They listen, talk, and when your meds make your mouth so dry you cry, they do things like go out to the store and find you some gum, because they are freaking AMAZING)… I’m doing a lot better.
In fact, I’ve actually legitimately handled some stuff. Like… yesterday, I found out that the nursing home really didn’t want to take me back, but that they’re legally obligated. That I’ve been difficult, noncompliant, and argumentative. If this situation doesn’t work, I will be living on the streets. And then, the social worker kind of ruffled me (okay, really ruffled me). She dropped a major bomb just as I was leaving the hospital, then kept telling me, “See? You’re still crying. You’re STILL crying. Stop crying. You need to stop.” Damn it, lady. I cry! I’m a crier. She told me that I don’t need my feeding tube and that other people with my conditions eat and I should too.
My usual reactions to that would be:
1. FINE. I won’t use the tube. Only, I refuse to eat, so where will that end me up? Yes, I bite off my nose to spite my face.
2. Regarding the other stuff, I’d cry for two days then find a way to be self destructive.
What did I do? I cried for two hours. I let myself cry. And the entire time, I knew that, soon, I would stop crying. And I would probably sleep all night, and wake up, and it would be a new day with new mercies and I would, in fact, feel a little better. I decided that I would apologize to the doctor for being a downright ass (my mental health issues were very much controlling me for a while, and I really was out of line and out of my own control) and buckle down and do better at the nursing home and make it work. I decided I’d get on a list to get back into an apartment. And I briefly talked to my mom but ultimately said, look… only I can feel the pain when I eat. No one else knows how it feels. This woman is one social worker– not even a doctor, and not even a social worker in my regular care time. So… refusing feeds would just be incredibly stupid.
I have so much work to do and such an uphill battle. I’ve trashed just about all of my relationships. From the hospital, I called Leigh, waking her up at 7 AM one morning, sobbing. She asked what had happened, and I told her, and then we just kept chatting. She’ll be embarrassed at me for making her sound like a saint again on here, but seriously, that girl, I think she really is one. My mom, my sister, my dad, my friend Jenny who came to visit me in the hospital, my closest friend in Pittsburgh (H)… just so much grace. I’m thinking of taking some online grad school classes to be able to do some writing stuff… we shall see. It would give me something to focus on.
For today, I’m going to be grateful for being allowed to shave my legs, for my favorite music, for my space with all its pink, for my people, for the outside, and for my Goosey girl.