Vocabulary Vixen

June 7, 2009

Newfangled Technological Brain-addled meanderings…

I am aware that at the moment I am but one voice, lost in a sea of information. One of these days, my blog will be a real blog. First order of business, I need to figure out how on earth this WordPress thing functions!

Second order of business, post more. Obviously, there are some issues that need to be unearthed. I say this as I am leaving a two-day mental freak-out that left me utterly useless for, well, two days. I’m back on the meds now, and I’m back to Sanity. I missed the bus back from Crazy Town, and it sucked. Then I cried. Then I cried some more. For no apparent reason. Evidently, I’m stressed out. I’ve got too much on my plate, and I’m stressed out. I go into “crazy mania mode” and then crash sometime after. I’ve been doing so well for so long now. Despite all of the bullshit that’s been thrown my way, I’ve done remarkably well for myself. All of this meltdown business was a far, faint dream. I crashed on Thursday, and I did it quickly, and badly. I’ve been recovering since.

More after the jump.

I realized something today. I’ve found a new show, called Mental. It’s a show centered on a busy psych ward that gets a new, quirky, and unorthodox doctor to stir things up and improve operations. I like the show for several reasons. The first one is that the main character, Dr. Gallagher, views and treats his patients as human beings. Not just an illness to be treated and shuffled. The second reason is that FINALLY, mental illness is making its way into the entertainment sphere, the regular, mass entertainment sphere. Without a lot of weird stereotypes to contend with that we’ve been battling since the dark ages. It’s a step in the right direction, that is for sure. I am pleased to see this. The formula is a little bit familiar, with an unorthodox, small-town player coming in to shake up the big, scary, corporate machine. But, it addresses some important issues, and I look forward to seeing the next episode!

Why do I mention all of this? Well, the most recent episode “A Beautiful Delusion” struck a chord at the very base of my brain. Without going into the entire plot of the episode, near the end of it, Dr. Gallagher was talking to one of his patients that had been in a secondarily delusional state with her husband. She was pissed, but Dr. Gallagher pointed out something important: “He’s a very sick man.” A light bulb lit in my brain.

I had an epiphany.

I have been battling mental illness for a decade now, at my wisened old age of 26. I have thrown these words around: “mental illness”, “mental disease”, etc for many years. I’ve got five different diagnoses that are all present, all valid, and can fly out of the darkness at a moment’s notice and unhinge my very existence. This is not the epiphany.

I am sick.

In the head, yes, but the fact remains that I am indeed sick. I am ill. I need to take measures to prevent these things from happening, or do things to soften the blow when they do occur. I suppose that I’ve always mentally categorized my problems as something different than “illness”, “sickness”, or “disease”, despite the words that I’ve used for a long time. It just sunk in. Illness. Sickness. Disease. I suppose that I’ve always categorized these things as “conditions” rather than “sickness”. I haven’t been physically ill, like having a cold or flu, but my brain does not function properly. Something is awry in my body.

I think I may have just discovered a key part in my recovery. Or, at the very least, a key part in illness management. These things are chronic and they are debilitating at times. I do not expect a cure to magically fix my brain chemistry, but I do know of things that help. Meds, for starters, are my godsend. If there are any naysayers, well, I’ll let my most recent meltdown speak for itself. Once I got medicated, I was able to come back to reality and stop screaming, yelling, and cutting myself up. Keeping a set schedule and routine is helpful. Proper nutrition and exercise have been extremely beneficial. I’ve not had the energy to exercise these past few days, but I’ll get back into it. All of these things help, but they do not cure. But, knowledge is half the battle on this one.

What I will be doing at some point in the near future is creating some sort of action plan for these meltdowns. Sometimes, all I need is some rest. Others, like a couple of days ago, I could probably stand outside, professional help. Help beyond the aid that I am already receiving (once weekly therapy). If these meltdowns get any worse in the future, I will need to get committed. I hope never to use this option. But, I need to be prepared in case I am in this situation again. I knew that I was in a dangerous spot, and that if I did not medicate RIGHT THEN, I would be far worse off. It took awhile for the meds to kick in, but it helped. It’s funny how quickly these episodes come on sometimes. It can be a glance, the wind blows, etc. This time, my dear husband ripped on me yet again about things that I do not have a lot of control over. I’ll elaborate some other time. The basic premise is that it was the same stuff, but on a different day.

This one was bad. I would say that I hope never to be in that state again, and I do hope that, but reality is telling me that I probably will be in a few months’ time. I would love to move forward and never look back from this shite, but the last time I tried that had disastrous results. Actually, every time I try that, this happens.

So what do I do now? Try my best to get better. Or, at the very least, be better more often. The meltdowns are getting to be fewer, but they are severe. They utterly shut me down for a minimum of two days each time, and it’s miserable.

On a positive note, I got my office cleaned today and I did the dishes to boot! Phew. That’s an accomplishment. Especially post-meltdown.

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