mental health

All posts tagged mental health

#duloxetinewithdrawal Day 6, think I got away lightly! And #Fitcamp with @combinedfitness

Published September 24, 2015 by Crystal

Pretty sure the omega 3 is a little bit magic, or I was never going to suffer that badly!

Problem is it’s been time of the month, or was it an advantage in that I was going to feel pretty crap anyway? But the dizziness has pretty much gone, brain zaps were few and far between the last couple of days, and the tiredness could be down to mother nature.

Today I have a crappy cold, though.  So I’m somewhat miserable.  But fortunately it is my day off and I have nothing to do except laundry and dishes and all that mundane crap.

I also have my lovely floppy soup  to enjoy.

I have to decide whether to give fitcamp a go, or take it easy until the evil mud run on Sunday, or do one last fitcamp.  The other problem (gawd I sound like a moaner today, because, basically, I am) is that I have a small lump on my achilles tendon, and having been here before, I know how bad it could get pretty quickly if I’m not careful.  I’m meant to be training for a half marathon at the end of October too.  I think I am an example today of how not to do anything!

On the Fitcamp subject, if you live in the Cheltenham area, I would highly recommend Kelly Eddie as a trainer, motivator, encourager, and generally lovely person.  I love Fitcamp classes.  I may not love them at the beginning, but by the end I am so happy I have completed, which is why I am in a quandary as to whether to go tonight!  And now I have a new job, I am wondering how I am going to be able to keep going in some way.  I may have to move across to her video classes, which won’t be so easy as being in a group, but then I know the support is there.

Anyhoo.  I’m off to pay attention to Eddie Izzard, and drink lots of hot drinks, and lament the passing of summer, under a blanket.


The Fall Out of a Weight Loss Holiday

Published July 16, 2015 by Crystal

Four pounds heavier, full of food and drink that do not nourish.

It was a blow out.  But I think I am beyond the post diet binge.  It isn’t even about them any more.  I’m rebelling, I’m self sabotaging, I’m doing everything that leaves me feeling crap and guilty, but I am finding it hard to analyse why.  The thing is, I now know the benefits of eating more veg, drinking less alcohol, drinking more water.  I know that less bread for me means less bloating.  I feel the physical and mental benefits when I do these things.  But then something snaps, and I want all those foods that make me feel below par.

Is it some sort of punishment for myself?  Do I somehow feel I don’t deserve to have good health and happiness?  And feel that I need to make it harder for myself to achieve those goals?  Or do I self sabotage because I feel I never succeed, and if I don’t let myself succeed, then failure is the inevitable, and I’m used to that, and I won’t be disappointed?  Mad, backwards thinking, but somehow it feels like that is the issue at the moment.

I feel on the edge of depression again, not quite falling in, but dangerously close to that edge, and I am desperate to turn it around before it’s too late.  So today I am making better food choices for me, increasing the water, and avoiding the caffeine.  Tonight is outdoor fitness, and I will treat myself more kindly.

Having food issues is all consuming, and exhausting.  And it’s why I get so mad at the Fattist and Sizest tweeters who are dead set on fat shaming.  I don’t like myself too much right now, and it isn’t encouraging me to lose weight.  It’s led to a week of overeating simply because.  And it’s exhausting for not only me, but my husband. Not because I am hideous and too fat to have sex with, but because I am emotional and needy and lacking in the self confidence.

Time for some kindness once more.

No longer whimsical about wine #mentalhealth #blackdog #depression

Published March 13, 2015 by Crystal

I realised half way through the week that I still had over 6 weeks to the marathon.  I’ve made a commitment to abstain for the 6 weeks in the run up to the marathon, so having got the weeks wrong, and having a horrid cough and cold that is inhibiting my training 100% at the moment I decided a medicinal bottle of wine would help soothe my throat, help me sleep, help me feel better.

It did none of those things.

And its dawned on me, wine is no longer enjoyable in the way it was.  Whether it is a temporary thing, or whether it is a long term thing I don’t know.

I don’t know if my brain chemistry has changed so much that the enjoyment has been affected.  I don’t know if it’s just down to generally feeling a little more in control of things because of the Slimpod.  This week I haven’t had the desire to grab a glass or several to help my mood, or help me sleep, or whatever.  I have felt quite chilled in the evenings and have not slept too badly.

Last night I slept horrendously.  2am saw me wide eyed and hot, then cold, then hot, then cold.  Then coughing, then uncomfortable.  I was fitful until 4:36am.  Where miraculously I fell asleep until 6:05am, and then until 7:14am.  I didn’t feel happy, I didn’t feel depressed, I just felt annoyed.  Because wine didn’t do what I hoped.  It didn’t give me a good night’s sleep.  It didn’t soothe my throat and stop the cough, and it didn’t make me particularly happy and chirpy while I drank it through the evening!

Wine has been a big part of my life.  Friends see wine related pictures and jokes, and I’m automatically tagged.  While I don’t hit the vino at midday, I am capable of drinking a lot.  And it has contributed to some great times.  But it has also contributed to some pretty horrendous episodes, when my depression has led to manic episodes.  I’m not an alcoholic.  I’m a depressive who self medicates with alcohol.  But really, either way you look at it, it’s not ideal.  And as time goes on I am more aware of the cons, and far less aware of the pros.

So, here we are, on a drizzly Friday morning, feeling slightly disappointed at the conclusion that maybe life would be better without wine.

How am I going to be witty and charming?  How am I going to feel relaxed and less awkward in uncomfortable situations?  And then there’s the Adam Ant question, “Don’t drink, don’t smoke, what do you do?”

It all feels ridiculously grown up.

But if my mental health improves then it’s going to be a great grown up life!

#MentalHealth and Employment (My thoughts and feelings)

Published January 19, 2015 by Crystal

In my most honest moments, or maybe not so much honest as anxious, fretful and paranoid, I think I will never be capable of being gainfully employed.  My depressive episodes can strike so suddenly and without warning, and day to day living becomes an ever lasting chore.  I worry about keeping a job, to be able to show up every day and keep going.  I would love to go back into education once the kids are old enough, to go to University and qualify as a nurse.  But my mind, at this time, makes it feel impossible,

And statistics aren’t encouraging. A report from The Guardian in 2007 states that 20% of people with severe Mental Health Issues are employed, compared to 65% with Physical Health problems.  I don’t know what the statistics are now, but I can’t see things having improved, considering the financial cuts made in these times of Austerity  If I am honest on an application form, where it asks if I have any health issues, will a prospective employer decide a candidate with mental health issues is too much of a risk?  At my last place of employment my manager was a bully (not just to me, but to a number of people before and since).  When she took a dislike to me the shit well and truly hit the fan and I ended up needing to be signed off, and soon after resigning.  It was only a lunchtime supervisor position, not something I made a big amount of money from, and my mental health was more important than tolerating a bitch who gets away with murder.  But as time goes on, the truth is I feel more and more stupid, and incapable.  Now I acknowledge I am writing this from the point of a really down day.  If I was in a hyper mood I would quite possibly be writing that I plan to take over the world.  But then that’s the problem with me.  It’s so up and down.  How can I possibly expect to hold down a job when I swing between poles of emotion like a pendulum?

Nick Clegg is promising £120M funding to support Mental Health Care but this is the same man who has been a Deputy Prime Minister since 2010, sitting back and watching cuts made again and again to important medical services.  It’s not unsurprising that now the campaign for the 2015 Elections is under way, Politicians are jumping of bandwagons they hope will get them votes.  But we experienced veterans of Mental Health are a little bit wiser to the tricks of the trade.  We have suffered as a result of Austerity Measures of which Nick Clegg must take some responsibility.  How can he justify his U Turn?  Why is #MentalHealth of such importance to him all of a sudden?  Is it because it is a hot topic at this point in time?  Is it because we’re such an emotional, unhinged bunch, that we’re sure to give him the vote if he promises us lots of money?  I can’t help but think I’m being taken for a mug.  So much needs to change to support Mental Health Care, and its sufferers.  I want to feel like a valued member of society, not an overemotional burden.  I want to believe I won’t be discriminated again when I honestly admit to mental health issues on a job application form, or to feel that a college will be able to support me through a degree.  Right now it’s not looking hopeful.

Sore throat. Panic. Depression has rewired my head.

Published October 8, 2014 by Crystal

As time passes, it is the little things that show me how my brain has changed through its interaction with depression.  A mole hill becomes a mountain.  A small inconvenience can become a massive tragedy.

Two nights ago my throat started to feel sore.  You know that sweet feeling you get in the back of your throat before a cold?  And the hard lump that makes swallowing uncomfortable?  I went to sleep making excuses.  Dust from sanding things down.  Paint fumes irritating.

I woke yesterday morning.  My throat still sore.  The hard lump uncomfortable.  My nose was itchy, my head slightly stuffy.

Panic.  “How can I carry on my training which is so so early on and every run important in extending my staying power?  If I don’t run today when will I start again and will I have to start all over again?  Every run counts.  Every day is important.  Every single run needs to happen within a couple of days of the last or I will need to start all over again.  I can’t start all over again.”

It was the beginning of a cold, but my very real panic was whether to run through it and risk making it worse and potentially missing lots of days, or whether to hold off, dose myself up with everything that might help kick the cold to touch, and give myself a day off.

I searched Mr Google “can I run with a cold?” and the overwhelming advice that came out was that if it is above your throat, running is ok.  If it is in your throat or your chest or both, then running is a no no.  Obediently I decided to stop, have the day off, get lots of drugs from Boots, and hope that this cold would go nowhere.  I had to go shopping anyway, so while not running I did walk and walk and walk through the day.

Today I woke up, and the cold seems to have been halted.  It hasn’t gotten any worse, and my throat might even feel a bit better.  With echinacea, garlic, and zinc taken this morning, I have to stay in and wait for a delivery, but after that I am going to attempt a run.  If I don’t complete it it is not the end of the world.  But believing that is a hard thing.  It seems that now my head is hard wired to believe the worst possible outcome of every inconvenience.  My brain will rush forward 6 months and see the failure emblazoned over my life.  It actually takes a lot of effort now to break things down and look at situations logically and sympathetically, and with kindness to myself.

A cold is a cold.  It’s not the end of the world.  It’s a small inconvenience, and it could potentially delay my training.  But training if I can’t breathe properly would be pretty pointless anyway, wouldn’t it?  It would be draining at least, and potentially make me feel worse.  In the *cold* light of day I can see how unreasonable I am being on myself.  But it has taken 24 hours to realise that.  To reflect and allow things to run their course as much as possible.

Today as I write this, there is a lot of news coverage around Mental Health.  The Liberal Democrats are seeking to improve waiting targets for sufferers.  Katharine Welby-Roberts is on the BBC talking about media coverage and the stigma from those around us as sufferers.

We are still a long long way from wide understanding and acceptance as sufferers of Mental Health issues.  And for me, it is understanding from myself too.

If you would like to sponsor me as I train and run the London Marathon, please click the button to the right of the blog entries.  I am raising money for SANE