this major mental illness thing is no joke.
it's funny--even though I now have a real diagnosis from reputable, diplomaed, liscened therapists and psychiatrists I still have a hard time with that major mental illness label. It's not just the label. it's that I spent so long hearing that I was just making things up, that nothing was "Wrong" with me, that I was selfish and sttention seeking, etc...maybe you get the picture. maybe you don't. Maybe you;d have to be me to really understand it, and since you're not me, well...all I can say is these taunting voices are constantly in my head like the buzzing of flies and whenever I try to talk to anyone about my feelings and experience the flies get very loud.
anyway, yesterday was a really bad day. I've been suffering increasing anxiety for weeks now--the kind of anxiety that makes you scared to go out of the house in case someone, god forbid, should actually see you much less try to talk to you. I keep thinking people are coming to get me and although I know in my head that no one is going to some drag me out of my bed and pillory me in the middle of the night in my soul I really don;t know it. I keep expecting that I'll be punished for something, some unmentionable crime I've committed totally unaware. The crime of just being. because in my soul I feel that I'm bad. My therapist keeps telling me I don;t do bad things; in fact, I'm a strangely good and compassionate person. But that doesn;t help. It's that Calvinist idea of grace getting in the way--that if you're on the list you;re good andif not you're irredeemable no matter what acts you may perform in this life. I know I come down on the irredeemable side just for getting born. I don't have to be a mass murderer or anything. It doesn't make any difference, just as doing good things do not add to my total goodness.
well, I finally called my psychiatrist who prescribed more anti-anxiety medication, tank all the gods so I'm doing better today. but he asked me, was there anything about this time of year that I had associations with that might make this a troublesome time. And I started crying uncontrollably and remembered my high school....not just high school, but grade school, from third grade on up. An abominably abusive place. For ten years I had to go and be mentally, verbally, emotionally and even sexually abused at this school. And there was no one to talk to about it. My parents just told me--making matters worse--that I should be grateful for the opportunity to go there because if I didn;t I would be forced to go to the DETROIT PUBLIC SCHOOLS--said in tones that made me understand that this was the lowest circle of hell, at least in my parents' estimation and I was a terribly ungrateful and selfish child for wanting not to be abused every day of my life. I even had to go to day camp there in the summer so there was no escape. Ever. I was scared all the time. When I tried to talk to the teachers about this they blew me off, probably because my mother was also a teacher there. Or maybe they had been told not to listen to me, I don;t know.
It was the most terrible thing remembering this, like I was back there again, helpless, with no where to turn. I cried myself into a migraine.
Then I went to see my therapist. I don;t remember everything I told her but she's of the opinion that I'm in a rapid cycling mixed state, which is something Bipolar people get that I don;t understand, and that I should tell my pdoc what I had told her. But if I can't remember, how can I tell him? the one good thing though, is that I finally convinced her that these voices in my head that contradict everything I say are NOT just old tapes and not just memories of things people have said to me in the past--they're living and present and I don't feel they're part of me at all. I don;t think they're a hallucination either. It's like...struggling always against some loud noise that blots out my own thoughts and makes it impossible for me to speak. And if anyone contradicts something I say, the voices just say, "See, what did I tell you?" So talking about what's going on with me is incredibly difficult.
Anyway, I have permission to take it easy and let the new meds do their work. Which is what I plan to do now that I'm done writing this.
And if you didn;t think I was crazy before I bet you sure do now. I don;t mind though. It feels more honest.
It feels weird sometimes to post these things on the internet where anyone can see them. But I feel a lot less exposed here than I do in general, so that's okay too.