Validation

The ironic thing about having a mental health issue of any kind is you do often wonder if it is all in your head. Funny eh? Well to be honest, no. It’s not.

The thing is, you spend so much time lying to yourself, hiding it, faking, pretending and all the rest that you get to the point where you genuinely don’t know what the fuck is real anymore. Until you hit that point where your whole world seems to just…. stop.

I have suffered depression now for over 12 year, most probably longer, but certainly from around the time my beautiful daughter was born. I’ll let you into a secret though, through all my previous lows, cutting my wrists and being a fraction away from being admitted, to taking my hands off the wheel of my car amongst other things,  I have never believed truly that there was anything that bad wrong with me. Until my meeting with an work appointed Occupational Health Therapist yesterday.

With doctors you give them an at that time recap of where you are in your life. So over time a lot of things build up that maybe you don’t realise or can forget. With the OH I had to go back over my past and fill in the gaps for him. This was fair enough, I could do that, matter of fact logical Claire came into play and reeled off what he needed to know. What got me was when he read back his findings into his Dictaphone while I was sat there, ready to do his report later. It made my blood run cold. What have I been doing to myself?!

Kind of along the same lines as yesterday’s Self Doubt, because mental illnesses have been around me my whole life through different people, some of quite serious levels, I have spent so much time comparing mine to theirs and thinking “shut the fuck up Claire, you’re just being a whingey bitch”. I know now, or at least I am starting to, that you can not compare your journey to anyone else’s. They are like finger prints, everyone has one completely unique to them. As we are all different people, we have different ways of coping with certain things. What I find easy or deal with well can be particularly hard for some one else. I will always remember my friend sharing her story with me, and I wont lie, it is extremely distressing. I cried. It is heart breaking to think such horrible things occur to such amazing people. She shared hers so I shared some of my history. She turned around, despite everything that had happened in her own life, and said I couldn’t have coped with what you have been through. You are so strong.

Like, what the actual fuck?!

I suppose I have always believed that what has happened over the years is normal. That it happens to loads of people. That there are people so much worse off than me. Therefore I just wouldn’t let myself admit that there was anything wrong. In my eyes there shouldn’t be. I would say this is the biggest mistake I could have made, and to a degree for the sake of my health I suppose it was, but then I do wonder if I would be on the path I am on now, if I had accepted I had problems and had got them sorted soon enough. To use the terms my OH used, I suppose my bathtub was just not quite that full to overflowing. I could just about keep mopping up the spillages without making so much of a mess. Dab hand with a mop me! Not that you would believe me if you could see my kitchen floor like lol.

The thing with the OH, who was a lovely man from Belfast, got to love the Irish, is that he had no links to me. He did not know me from Adam (who the hell is Adam by the way? That phrase always intrigues me), he didn’t have my medical notes, he had a very vague idea of my work situation and why I was there, yet within 1 hour he made me feel more accepting and aware of my situation than anyone else ever has. My counsellor is awesome, and I am making incredible progress between her and this blog, but he just got me. He made me believe for possibly the first time ever, that what was happening to me was not my fault. I am genuinely ill. I am not exaggerating. I am not faking. I am not skiving. I am not making a mountain out of a mole hill. It’s not all in my head.

He didn’t just assess me, he also tried to teach me and help me understand a bit more. I think I took up more of his time than I should of but I left that office with him shaking my hand and telling me I am strong and I am getting better. He actually made me believe I will get better. Considering it’s a life long, incurable disease, it does not have to be something that I suffer with. He assured me that I am doing everything right – the counselling, the anti depressants, although these need to be checked, and most relevant for me, my exercise. He was genuinely so supportive of what I was doing and how I was doing it. He admired my drive and determination despite all the stumbling blocks that are in front of me that could potentially de rail me. He knows I want to get better, that I do not want this to be a noose around my neck any longer than it needs to be and because of this he knows I can achieve what I need to.

I was thinking I would be back to work within the next week or so, I had got myself quite stressed over thinking I should be back now. That I was taking the piss. He has made me see that at this moment in time it is certainly not suitable for me. The bath water has not emptied to a safe level just yet BUT the end is in sight. The bubbles have gone and I can see the base of the bath. Work is a very small contributing factor to my circumstances but by no means the reason I am where I am. Until these issues have been addressed or unearthed completely, where I am and what I am doing now is what is important to me. I need to build myself back up. I need to work on my self esteem and my self confidence in order to be the kick ass bitch I know I can be.

I want to thank that OH for making me feel validated. For helping me clear the rubble and seeing things for what they are. I believe I am over the worst. The dark thoughts are getting fewer every day now. I know I will look back in a years time and appreciate what I have been through and how I have managed to come out the other side. I have not let me beat me. I am obviously meant to be here for a reason. Whatever that reason is, is not clear at the minute, but I know it will be in good time.

I am going to bed tonight with a genuine smile on my face. For what I have learnt, for what I have, for who I have on my side, for what I have achieved in such a small time already………. and for the proper mint base tan I have managed to put in place in my garden today.

Happy as the proverbial pig!!

Sweet dreams

CC xx

 

 

 

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10 thoughts on “Validation

  1. You don’t come across professionals that understand that well, let you leave feeling as though you were listened to and that all of your feelings are valid very often. You will always remember today. Just remember, this is how professionals could be and you will find another at some point. I remember the first time it happened to me, I was buzzing for at least a fortnight, fantastic when you go in there depressed, eh? You have every right to feel how you are feeling, whether anyone else understands or not. Keep smiling Chick, you deserve to have good days in between, even while you are off work through depression 😉 🎈

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Love this comment Liz. Thank you 😘😘 . I didnt think people like him existed. Especially ones linked with work. So i was astounded. It is easier to breathe now. If that makes sense? I will smile at every given opportunity. And i hope i can make them spread 🎈🎈🎈

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  2. To have support from someone who doesn’t know you, believes in what you doing is a fantastic thing. Now you’ve got your new books to the next step or brick keep building. Sending happy and positive thoughts for today is a new day xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m so pleased the OH guy was so understanding and ‘got you’. I still go by what I said that I couldn’t have survived what you have. You are strong. But it’s also ok to not be the perpetual tower of strength. Be kind to yourself, as kind as that lovely Irish guy was to you. 😘😘😘 Xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you my darling 😘😘😘 I am learning a little bit more every day. I have the right support now, I know who I have to lean on and who will hold me up. Now i am facing the right way. The OH picked me up and put me on the board. Time to complete my game xxxx

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Fab. I love how you describe it as completing the game. I’m so glad you’re a blogger. Every post I read i feel happy as I know without the push I gave you, you might not be doing it 🙂 You are helping yourself and others. I relate to this one very much Xx 😘😘

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  4. Your OH guy sounds like a special kind of person. You’re so right about how we compare ourselves to others and then convince ourselves that we’re somehow less important or worthy. Sounds like you’re definitely on the right track. Great stuff and keep updating on us on your amazing journey xx

    Liked by 1 person

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