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dimanche 26 janvier 2014

Valley girl

Seriously, who knew that 30 mg a day of valium, along with the usual antidepressant (mianserine) and neuroleptic (abilify) could zonk me out to the point where I actually pass out? I swear, this treatment is killing me. I do nothing but sleep and stagger home for Tom, though Y. arrived tonight to spend a few days with him, to my delight. Life here in prison is as crap as you can imagine and I can't wait to be home. I hate being here, and I hate the drugs they're pumping me full off. I also hate the hard-sell I'm getting on sismo: I DON'T WANT IT.
Oh, heavens, get me out of here...

jeudi 23 janvier 2014

Seismic shock



I checked back in to the hospital on Tuesday, despite administrative problems involving my €3,000 debt from last time, which my "tuteur" claimed he had taken care of, but in fact hadn't (seriously, WTF is the point of having this stupid "tuteur" crap if he doesn't do what he says and just makes my already-chaotic life even more complicated?). I, predictably, spent most of the afternoon and evening in tears (plus ça change and all that jazz).

Yesterday (Wednesday), Dr H turned up at 7 am (good job I'd been awake since before 4...) and we had a long chat. He did most of the talking, and once again brought up the subject of electroconvulsive therapy. Fucking electroshocks, like in One flew over the cuckoo's nest. I, also predictably, did not take this news well.

Now, he can't force me to have ECT, even if I've been sectioned (which I haven't, quite), so I'm free to refuse, and almost certainly will. But just the fact that he thinks that this is a viable option makes me feel sick to the stomach. Almost literally. I can't eat, even the smell of food makes me nauseous.

I refused the IV valium I was supposed to have (never want to experience THAT again, seriously), and also refused the valium in tablet form the first night. I yielded on Wednesday morning, only for it to totally knock me out, so refused it again in the evening and this morning.

This morning, Dr H talked about ECT again, trying to make it seem like a more or less totally harmless experience (which doesn't fit at all with the (many) (serious) articles I read on the subject yesterday afternoon, including this one:, but nevertheless repeating that he has other options if I don't want to do it. I don't feel very reassured, I can tell you.

In addition, he announced that tomorrow I'll be transferred back to the part of the hospital I was in at first, the first time round. Apparently, it's not as "locked" as it was, and is more like the other, "open" side now. The reason for this transfer is that it's smaller, so I can be "watched" better. Pffffffff. I'm just going from one feeling of abject failure to another, even more abject.

Dr H assures me that he understands my point of view, understands that I don't feel I have the strength to fight any more and insists that he has enough strength for both of us. Which is nice, I guess. But he also said he's deeply concerned by how far down the black hole I've fallen in such a (relatively) short space of time, by how long this "bad period" has been going on, and by my (OK, I admit it) erratic and/or irresponsible behaviour.

I just want to go home. Be with Tom. Be left alone. But there's little chance of that: Dr H has made it perfectly clear that he doesn't really trust me.

It sure looks like 2014 is going to be another miserable year, doesn't it?

lundi 20 janvier 2014

Well, actually it didn't, but it's going to now

I got a reprieve, and, all ostrich-y as I am, I spent most of last week kind of hoping that Dr H was just going to forget about it all in general, and me in particular.

I should be so lucky.

His secretary phoned at 1 pm today and said I was to go to the clinic at 2... I...just...couldn't. So now it's tomorrow, 2 pm. And I feel sick.

I know I'm not coping well, I know I'm totally losing my grip, but still. Going back there, it's so...serious, so real. So scary.

What I wouldn't give for someone big and strong to just hold me tight and tell me it's all going to be OK. I know it's not true, but it would feel nice, just for a few minutes. And it might stop the tears for a while.

dimanche 12 janvier 2014

And so this happened

I guess this has been coming for a while. I mean, Dr H even mentioned it a while back. But now there's an actual date for my readmission to the psychiatric hospital, and it's not voluntary, it's obligatory - just one false move away from being sectioned.

I feel like the sky has, once again, crashed down on to my head.

This is how it's going to be from now on. This is it. There's nothing more.

mardi 7 janvier 2014

(Bi)polar vortex

Did you see what I did there, with the title of this post? Seriously, I crack myself up sometimes...

So. Things are going so swimmingly well this year (not) that Dr H is starting to talk more and more seriously about me having another stint in my favourite mental institution. I think that what scares me the most about this prospect is that, in some ways, I actually find it quite appealing...

Not in all ways, obviously, as it would, once again, severely screw up my relationship with C and L. Plus, there's the work thing and the mandataire de justice thing and plenty of other things. But I clearly can't go on much longer like this - I'm essentially not functioning at all, my arm is a mess, the muscat is calling loud and strong, I do nothing but cry and I can feel the world crumbling around me.

I'm perhaps kidding myself, but I feel as though going back there would allow me to just forget the shitstorm of crap in my "real" life and take a break from it all. Regroup, so to speak.

On the other hand, going back there is, well, going back there... And it's a scary place, a place where I've already spent waaaaay too much time.

I just don't know. I'm in two minds (how appropriate)... I can see why Dr H wants me to go back: he's worried, I freak him out. Hell, I freak me out. But it seems like such a total failure - another one, to add to the already horribly long list of failures that make up my pitiful life.

I'm seeing Dr H again on Thursday, so we'll see how that goes.

I'll keep you posted.

lundi 6 janvier 2014

The now-traditional New Year's questionnaire!

I know you've all been waiting for this with bated breathe, so here it is at last: the annual New Year's questionnaire!

1. What did you do in 2013 that you'd never done before?
Well, I spent two thirds of the year in a mental institution, that was certainly original...
2. Did you keep your new year's resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don't think I've ever made any resolutions seriously, so no, I didn't really make any last year so didn't keep or break any either.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Yes, my neighbours had a second little boy, Julien, in June.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
No. But a friend I made in the aforementioned mental institution succeeded in killing herself, which I found extremely disturbing.
5. What countries did you visit?
Spain (Barcelona and Zaragoza) and the UK twice.
6. What would you like to have in 2014 that you lacked in 2013?
Same as every year, I guess: a steady income, mental stability, a normal life. Not very hopeful about any of that, though.
7. What dates from 2013 will remain etched upon your memory and why?
None in particular.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Getting out of the mental hospital.
9. What was your biggest failure?
Maybe not getting out in a very permanent manner.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Yet again, allergies as usual, plus many, many mental health problems. Pfff.
11. What was the best thing you bought?
I've barely bought anything this year.
12. Whose behaviour merited celebration?
Y. Always supportive, always attentive.
13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
Mine, probably.
14. Where did most of your money go?
Paying off debts, as usual.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
As last year, nothing. I'm beginning to suspect I'm incapable of feeling excitement.
16. What song will always remind you of 2013?
Like last year, I listened to the Jeff Buckley version of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" a lot. An awful lot, actually.
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder?  In retrospect, and contrary to what you might believe, I think I'm actually (even) sadder than this time last year...
b) thinner or fatter? Unfortunately, the drugs that made me thinner this time last year didn't do much else, and the ones that replaced them made me fatter, so I'm probably about 10 kg fatter than a year ago.
c) richer or poorer? Probably "richer", but it's all relative. I'm still hopelessly in debt.
18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Be happy.
19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
20. How did you spend Christmas?
In Scotland, with my daughters and my dad. For a wide range of reasons I won't go into right now, I was as miserable as hell and had a wretched time.
21. Did you fall in love in 2013?
Yes, I think I did. But of course it didn't work out. Y and I are now "just friends", at his request, and my heart, though always suspecting that something like this would happen, feels very much broken.
22. What was your favourite TV programme?
I got quite into "Downton Abbey" I suppose. But mainly, I watch a lot of crap - I'll watch just about anything, actually, because I hate silence...
23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
24. What was the best book you read?
I haven't been able to read a book in months.
25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Hardly a "discovery", but a sort of revelation for me - when in need of "loud and screechy", I've found that the Nine Inch Nails do the job very nicely...
26. What did you want and get?
27. What did you want and not get?
Love that lasts, a feeling of safety.
28. What was your favourite film of this year?
I haven't really seen any films this year.
29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
As last year, I don't really remember my birthday, though I do know I was in the mental hospital for it. I turned 44.
30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Same as last year, being loved.
31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2013?
I don't have a "fashion concept".
32. What kept you sane?
Y certainly did a lot to make me strong enough to get out of the hospital, but I don't think anything has kept me sane.
33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
I don't seem to be in that kind of mindset any more.
34. What political issue stirred you the most?
Nothing. I've barely kept up with politics this year.
35. Who did you miss?
Same as last year - my friends in England, my friend in South Africa, and now Y too.
36. Who was the best new person you met?
No one.
37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2013
I'm going to quote Nietzsche for this (in the original German, of course!): "Und wenn du lange in einen Abgrund blickst, blick du Abgrund auch in dich".
38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year
Two: first, the same as last year: it's from Train's early hit, "Meet Virginia":
Same as last year, I'm afraid! Train, from "Meet Virginia": She pulls her hair back as she screams, "I don't really want to live this life!", and Snow Patrol, from "Chasing Cars": If I lay here, if I just lay here, would you lie with me and just forget the world.

So, there you have it. Done and dusted for another year. The way things have started, I'm not holding out much hope for a happier year than the last, oh, 5... but I guess I won't know for sure until I do this questionnaire again next year. Assuming I'm still breathing of course.