Just needed to update my blog with what’s been going on and where I am.
I’ve done just over 19 of my 50 miles. It still feels a long way to go. I thought it would be easier than this. It could be just unfortunate that it coincides with stopping chocolate and cutting down my medication…. that’s all kicking in more now.
I went for my walk today and felt so anxious. I had to stand at the front door psyching myself up to open it. And when I was out I felt on edge. The last couple of walks, noises have made me jump and feel panicky – the other day it was when three motorbikes went by – they were so noisy I felt scared and had to dig my nails into my hand to calm down. For the first half of today’s walk at least, I felt as though I was being followed. It kept sounding like there was someone behind me. On a couple of occasions people were there. I let them pass as I didn’t feel safe. I felt so self-conscious and really didn’t want to be outside the house. I don’t know if this anxiety is caused by withdrawal, or what.
I’m starting to wonder why I’m doing this walking thing… I know it’s helping me get fitter and feel more positive. But that’s not the point. I’m meant to be raising money for Parkinson’s UK, and other than closest family I have no other sponsors and don’t expect I will. I’ve loosely asked around, but I don’t know many people anymore. It’s hard to ask them to sponsor me. It’s getting me down a bit, especially at the moment, as it was also in memory of my granddad. So having raised nothing feels like a failure. It feels like people not valuing him or my love for him. And it hurts right now as I’m just a few days away from the second anniversary of the loss of him.
Last year I reached out, hoping to have the support and care of friends for the first anniversary. One person said something. Nobody else. This year I won’t make a big deal out of it. It’s setting myself up for even more rejection and neglect. This time last year was where my mental health deteriorated rapidly… the splitting and paranoia kicked in. That sealed the fate with my former friend.
That’s weighing on my mind a lot right now. I attempted something recently in the hope of finding peace as I moved on. I don’t think it’s really done any good. I’m still blocked. I’m still angry. I don’t believe the story I’ve heard. I still believe it was vindictive. I still believe they meant me harm. My paranoia is alive and kicking. There’s only one way it would ever be resolved… the friend realising how their actions have hurt me, undoing it and making up for it with the same effort I tried with them. Direct communication. And taking responsibility. That’s one thing that I’m unhappy about now – the inference that I’m somehow to blame for tensions between them and other people. No. If they argue with other people as a result of messing things up with me then that’s their fault, not mine. I take no responsibility for how they interact with others as a result of their inability / refusal to interact with me. I’m angry. I’m anxious about the whole situation and I wish I’d left it alone. I got upset about it today… about how they turned into this person. I never thought they’d treat me the way they have. It’s hard to accept.
Another thing is I still have such a problem with self-harm. People would probably assume I’m doing better now and therefore not doing it. They’re wrong. Yes I’m forcing myself to do my volunteering. Yes I’m forcing myself to go walking most days. Yes my diet is different, I’m coming off my medication and I’m finally taking some vitamins! All positive steps. But I still self-harm. Even when I have no reason to. Even on the ‘good’ days.
Because self-harm can be like that. It is like an addiction. Sometimes it’s all my mind can think about…. when can I next hurt myself and how? I don’t know why I’m doing it and why I don’t want to stop.
I feel all the old shame again. Because I’m trying to hide the fact I’m always doing it. I reckon people think I’m better than I am. I already know the people at work don’t understand and think self-harm is a one-off thing. So if they were to see the bandages on my arms they’d be like ‘Have you done it again?’ Well yes…. of course I have. It’s an ongoing problem. It doesn’t just happen once and then you get over it. If only.
No matter how hard I’m trying to pick myself up and push myself forward, I still can’t stop hurting myself. I’m even worried that family won’t understand that I’m still doing it, even when I seem okay. So I hide it. I know nobody would understand this mentality. I keep saying to myself it’s mental illness. It doesn’t have to make sense. It’s an illness, in that it’s something that’s got a hold of my mind and drives me to do what I do… to need it… to want it and to think I deserve it. But it feels like weak excuses. Nobody would understand unless they also know that feeling, having been there themselves.
In better news, I had a great night at the theatre last night, just as I had a good time at a gig last month. I’m halfway through the good things I booked up for this year to keep me going. They are so anxiety-provoking but I’m trying to learn to have good experiences again, and trust that things don’t always end badly. I’ll be honest I’m a bit scared of what happens after June…. once I’ve got through them all and there’s nothing left to aim for. It is playing on my mind a bit. Nothing to hold on for. Hopefully by then I might get some community support…. I’ll be contacting the Wellbeing Centre and Recovery College this week to see if they’ll help me. As much as I’m trying to help myself, my mind is still sick, so I know I still need the help.
Friend-wise, I’m all over the place. I’m extremely doubtful of anyone’s intentions to be my friend. I don’t think anyone truly wants me in their life. I’ll talk with people about meeting up and it never materialises. And as much as I could just suggest it to them again, as maybe they feel they’re annoying me by asking me again, it’s not what I’m able to do at the moment. At this point I actually need others to take the lead and invite me on a particular day, or tell me what we’re doing and when (as long as I’m free). I hate to admit this as it probably makes me sound needy and demanding, but I’m not going to initiate anything with anyone at the moment…. for two reasons…. first because I’ve been made to feel a burden, unwanted, uncared for and invisible for so long that I’d rather stay in my quiet little world of loneliness than to bother others and risk any more rejection. But secondly because I am scared. I’m scared of getting the ball rolling and people expecting too much from me. I’m scared they’ll do what someone else did with me last year, and keep messaging me before I can reply… I’ll then get overwhelmed having to respond to so much, and put it off…. and then I’ll apologise for taking so long and be made to feel shit for it. Which then makes me pull away as I think I’m such a rubbish friend and people deserve better than me. It’s true, they do. But I really struggle with interaction at the moment. I struggle with small talk. Got something to discuss? Great, go for it. Got a question? Ask it. Need my help and support? I’d be only too willing to help. I’d be thrilled that you asked me. But idle chit-chat I just can’t do. Just talking for the sake of talking…. and I know it’s what you do in a friendship, but right now I don’t have it in me, and I don’t want to hurt anyone by not replying. If I’m honest, as much as I post online, I’m in isolation mode again. Thinking nobody cares about me. I feel lonely not having a close friend anymore.
But I have someone in my life whose close friend has sadly passed away recently. A part of me feels I lost my friend at the time I did, to be able to sympathise on some level with this other person. It’s a different sort of loss, but we both have nobody close anymore. So I can imagine what she’s lost and how it might feel. I’m trying to see that things happen for a reason. It doesn’t mean it’s good that these things happen. But you can create meaning out of most things in life. You can turn a negative into a positive… even if it’s just using your awful experiences to help others who are going through the same thing.
I’m trying to be positive. It’s a little harder right now to do that. But it is a particularly difficult time for me at the moment and there’s a lot going on. I hope I can keep going as I have been and that things get easier. I feel like I’m paddling at the moment…. I’m not quite sure whether I’m getting anywhere or not…
Anyway, that’s just a round-up of what’s been happening. Hope everyone’s well.