Rehabilitating the Broken Girl

Call this therapy.

It’s not that I haven’t thought of things to write about, or that I’ve forgotten, or that I haven’t had time; in fact since having to put Little Shot into care I’ve had more time than ever to focus on my recovery. I think the reason I haven’t been writing is because my days are spent in a state of absolute exhaustion. I do what I think is best for me, including rest and being around good people, but in trying so hard to make myself better, I think I’ve kind of forgotten who I am slightly. For too long I’ve just been “the sick girl” and I needed reminding that I’m much more than that. Somewhere in me there is a well of strength which I know I’ve had to delve into so many times in the past. And now, on days where I don’t even feel I have the energy in me to get out of bed, I need to remember that it’s still right there.

Writing has always been a passion of mine. I’m not the best at it, but it helps me. It’s a great escape, and a way to safely explore the depths of my own mind.

Yesterday during one of our weekly sessions, my counselor suggested I write about what I’m going through, and maybe some of the things we’d discussed. Sorry if any of it is just me repeating what I’ve already shared in other posts, and I won’t bore you, or myself, with the details of what my life is like right now, but basically my test results came back negative for narcolepsy. This is fantastic news, but of course that leaves us back at square one with this strange, undiagnosed monster which has plagued me for so long and just won’t leave. In over twenty five years of therapy work my counselor hasn’t come across another case like it, so whatever this “thing” is, it seems pretty alien to us all. She did however say that she is contacting a doctor in the United States who has a lot of experience in working with clients with similar backstories, so hopefully he may have heard of another case like mine, and might have more of a clue as to what this monster is named.

For now the psychotherapists and doctors have put it down to an extreme form of my dissociation disorder, and good old post-traumatic stress disorder, (PTSD,) a very vague term encompassing any sort of outcome from any sort of traumatic experience.

Basically dissociation is a coping mechanism. Since I was young, when faced with any sort of stress or trigger of a traumatic memory, my mind would kind of shut down. I’d go through phases of dissociation where I could go hours without being mentally present. I would snap out of it totally confused. It could also get really confusing for those around me. Sometimes I’d repetitively scratch at my chest and between my legs. Sometimes I’d just carry on doing things normally, though I’d have no idea what I’d done. Triggers could be anything from watching someone use a yellow highlighter to driving through a certain suburb, or watching a film. It happened at least once a day for a few years, even on heavy doses of anti-psychotic meds.

On top of this was the psychosis. And the anxiety and depression, from time to time. You could say my teenage years where intense.

In August 2013 I experienced my final psychotic episode. Since then I’ve been sweet. In fact I don’t remember ever feeling this happy and mentally stable in my entire life. I’m a totally new person. How is all of this relevant? Well, my sleep disorder seems to be linked to whatever has gone on for me psychologically for the past sixteen years. So even though I may not be dissociating in the way that I used to, it is manifesting into physical symptoms, hence the reason I fall asleep constantly, often cannot wake, and so on.

So for now I need to focus on not being put under any stress. I need to focus on the safety of Little Shot, hence the childcare, and I need to do a little work on my own stuff, which is where my brilliant counselor comes into the picture. I’ll start slowly picking apart my life bit by bit through my blog, and see what ugly and beautiful things come out of it. I’m tip – toeing through recovery; slowly but surely, taking the right steps to becoming a healthier me.

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