isolation

The Hospital Chronicles – Part 2

I am suicidal but I don’t want to die. Quite the opposite. I want to live a full and productive life. So I was admitted into a psychiatric hospital for a week. I’ve had my medication adjusted, an addition to my diagnosis and received some invaluable therapy. This is a documentation of all that I learned.

Alone is not my normal, it’s a trigger

A few weeks ago I had a life changing session with my doc and I walked away with the revelation of ‘normal is relative‘. One of the other topics addressed was my debilitating sense of ‘aloneness’ – a sense that I stand alone in this world, unwanted and invisible. This has been a hot topic in each session I have had with him. We explored it some more yesterday in hospital.

This was his perspective:

As human beings we are born to be social. From the time of cavemen, we have relished sitting around the fire exchanging stories, interacting, eating til our belly pops, loving, fighting, brawling, hunting, pairing off, having sex, reproducing, nurturing, laughing, crying, roaring with anger. I am not weak because I want a companion. For most of us, wanting a companion is ‘normal‘. If I had an extended family unit, a large circle of friends, were a social personality type or had a pet, I would not be as devastated by this ‘aloneness’ as I am. My only human interaction is the limited amount I allow myself at work, and interaction with my blogging friends. Too much time alone. Too much time for thoughts. I need to be channeling this energy into social interaction as one would channel water into a growing plant so that it may grow and thrive. I need human distraction so my thoughts don’t consume me. This has nothing to do with bipolar. Its based on my personality type.

But for every rule there is an exception. There are the extraordinary beings that live a thriving life completely alone and content. But that’s not how I’m built. I need someone. And needing is different to being needy. And needing someone to share in my life is not weak. For me its natural and normal.

We ended the session with him saying – This year, I’ve known all along your diagnosis is loneliness. Your loneliness is causing you great suffering and its become one of your triggers. Talk about ‘food for thought’. It’s more like a banquet of food for thought. An eat-as-much-as-you-like-buffet food for thought!

 

 

Life sentence

A great storm is howling outside in the dark. The wind pushes the trees sideways. The windows rattle in their frames. Lightening forks and illuminates in silhouettes. Thunder rumbles and cracks like a whip. The rain has turned into hail. I watch the spectacle and all the while a thought chases its tail around in my head…

I am alone

I am alone

I am alone

I am alone and I am frightened. Abandoned by lies and self-serving agenda’s. So alone it feels cold. My life is inhospitable. By day the smiling and the laughing because I know there is no tolerance for sadness. At night I sit on the floor and look out at the dark and wish I was someone different. Too often I wish I had never left my husband. It was a life I was familiar with. Despite the abuse it was a comfort zone. It seems so much harder, out here, alone.

I battle to see the point of my courage and struggles. To what end? If this is freedom I would not choose it again. I’ve gained independence but so much loss along the way. I am severely depressed. I have no hope of feeling better. This is not a life. This is a sentence.

Friendships, bipolar and codependency

I wrote this a while back – early July when I [out of order due to depression] – and may explain the contribution to my current profound depression. Due to it’s emotional sensitivity I have not felt comfortable posting it. Until today.

I’ve been in therapy once a month tackling my abandonment and codependent issues and, along with a lot of research, I’ve been making headway in my understanding of dysfunctional behaviours that have carved detrimental patterns through my life.

Codependency

On Monday, I had a breakthrough in understanding just how pervasive this behaviour is – not only as daughter, wife, girlfriend or lover, but that it lives and breathes within ANY relationship….. including my friendships.

What a harsh dose of reality to realise I have dysfunctional/codependent relationships with the only two friends I have and love. To realise that my value of these friendships was not matched with equal importance, I can’t tell you how much it slayed me. To realise I’ve been people-pleasing, jumping through hoops, making fun of myself and humiliatingly being made fun of; to realise I’ve been making excuses for behaviour I now find unacceptable (thanks to my boundaries crash course), all in exchange for their approval to validate my own identity, to be accepted, to be loved. To realise their love was condition, absolutely broke me.

Friendship

She was my best friend. But I was only the ‘funny’ friend at work that was never included in her personal life or out of work activities. Out of work, she hangs out with a person she confesses to find ‘repulsive’. So why do activities with this horrible person when we could have been a reinvention of Thelma and Louise? She was a friend on her terms only. Offers of help when accepted, turned into excuses and lies.

At this point my abandonment issues were SCREEEEAMING! My natural instinct was to immediately disengage from the world. To close ranks, draw the bridge, fill the moat and cloak myself in isolation. To be really, truly, completely alone. I had to make a decision. Continue my current behaviour which would silence my fears of abandonment? Establish some boundaries? No, not possible. So I’ve cut all ties. My world has been emptied by the loss, a kind of death, of my only friends.

I want to say there is not blame to be bestowed. That we are all characters in our own lives and these lives blend together – sometimes for a short periods and sometimes for an eternity. But I can’t. I feel betrayed, vulnerable, cheated, angry. The loss of my only friends has felt like a death.

In the midst of this emotional storm, I was struck by a concept the therapist mentioned – a new home is the opportunity to create a new persona. So what if I looked at this from a different angle? Instead of loss, I look at it as gain? What if I have to say to myself is – I now have a clean slate; I’ve done my housekeeping and swept everything that’s dysfunctional out. And now it’s just me. Alone. Starting again. A second chance. An opportunity to create a new me, a new life well beyond the expectations of others. Feels kinda liberating looking at it like that. ….

Bipolar

Well, it would be if I wasn’t bipolar and felt every ounce of emotion like dry ice on raw skin . Instead my illness has directed me head first into an endless depression, compounded by the stress of buy a home, moving, the incident with my father, sciatica and then Ulla’s death.

This is what set my depression in motion. It has become more entrenched as each day passes. I try, I try and I try to adopt the therapist’s strategy. I try to keep busy, to fight the depression, to adopt my own strategies. My efforts are endless and exhausting. But the ‘aloneness’ is so amplified it is consuming me. On bad days, I think it’s going to kill me. Since all my dealings with people over the past year have lead to betrayal, I don’t have much faith in this ‘aloneness’ ending anytime soon.

10-08-2016-letting-go-to-live 10-08-24-letting-go-to-live-2

 

Isolated by rage and stigma

This has been a difficult week for me. I want to say traumatic but some people would think I’m being overly dramatic. I am having problems with an internet service provider. I have been verbally abused, intimidated, dodged, transferred from one department to the other and lied to. Repeatedly. My complaints go unanswered by the company, even though I’m well within my legal right and could actually sue them.

In judgement of rage

So naturally suffering from bipolar rage, I had a blowout [here] but the resulting fallout is I have plummeted into depression. I mean, I was depressed to begin with. Now this. And my co-workers think I’m a lunatic. This is what they told me – I didn’t handle the situation properly;  I should have spoken nicer, acted better and if I had done those things I would have received a better response. But if I receive a phone call from the company and I am screamed at right off the bat and not given a chance to talk, OF COURSE I’M GONNA SCREAM BACK. I still asked this woman “are you intimidating me”? Her reply was “Yes. I am intimidating you”. How am I going to respond to that? Of course I’m going to get fucking angry.

I feel powerless. About the situation and in an emotional sense. Which in and of itself is distressing and hopeless. I don’t know where the line is between passive or aggressive. I swing to either extremes without ever finding a calm, cool foothold in the middle. I get the feeling I’m not allowed to be angry… ever….  That my anger is dismissed – oh, she’s not getting angry because she has just cause to be, but because she’s ‘bipolar’. Does that make any sense?

When living in the real world

I am entitled to get angry when someone is being unjust with me. But why am I the only one held accountable, blamed? Why has no one said – that saleswoman was a bitch; good for you for standing up for yourself; asserting your rights? No, the finger is pointed squarely in my direction. I am the one at fault! I have behaved inappropriately. And I have to sit surrounded by these judgements and assumptions all day long.

I feel ‘less than’ my co-workers because I react differently, because I have bipolar. I feel invisible, diminished, judged, shamed, inferior, incapable, truly disabled and barely tolerated. I am overshadow by self-doubt, paranoia and self-loathing with a mix of suicide ideation. Its a case of ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t’ scenario to live in their world. When I’m myself, I’m accused of being awful. And when I’m silent I’m accused of not participating. So I try not to exist. I would rather retreat into silence. If I don’t open my mouth, I will not ripple the water. I thought yesterday counted for something. But it didn’t. Stigma is still alive and well because I am living and working amongst it. I can literally say, I have been silenced by stigma.

Blustering bullshit

Yes. I’m full of shit. I’m referring to my most recent almost-but-not-quite brush with romance. I’m all like “I’m not broken” and “I’m relieved its over”. But truthfully, I’m not okay. I talk the talk but I don’t really walk the walk. I try to convice myself I’m okay, but I’m not. I will be. But just not right now.

Sooooo, yesterday I entertained the idea of a pity party. I even bought chocolate. Lots of it. But thanks to fellow bloggers encouragement, I’ve said to myself:

Myself, it’s gonna be tough, but no guts no glory, whatever the growing pain *sigh*

Sometimes, in the midst of struggle, for pure survival sake you have to take cover. You have to crawl into a foxhole and wait for the dust to settle. Such is life. And that’s what I plan to do. I haven’t given up. I’m just taking refuge for a while.

I’ve taken a few knocks
that have made me see spots
but I’ll try to get back to this place [here]
determined to finish the race
with grace and at an even pace
for my own state of mind
I won’t fall behind
this is my time now
I won’t throw in the towel

under construction

 

Drowning in dysfunction

I was raised in dysfunction and I married dysfunction. It’s the only behaviour I know. As destructive as it is, I’m comfortable around it because I know my role as a codependent. Despite craving peace, I am constantly drawn to chaotic, dysfunctional relationships.

And I haven’t a clue how to change this pattern. Other than what seems obvious to me – avoid all interaction with other human beings. I know its not a reasonable solution. But for now I don’t have a clue. I just have this song, Going Under by Evanescence, to reflect how out of my depth I feel in a relationship of any kind.

 

 

The queen rules

queen

I want the weekend

never to end

I’m just one

having fun

alone

on my own

no conversation

forced co-habitation

just peace

such relief

I’m suited for this

no romantic myths of expectation

pleas of validation, false salvation

just a plain reality

is my mentality

only me at home alone

like a queen sitting on her throne

 

 

I’m up for it – 3 Day Quote Challenge

Rules
1. Thank the person who nominated you
2. Post one quote for three consecutive days
3. Nominate three bloggers each day

Thank you Dana for nominating me for the Three Day Quote Challenge. I accept the challenge and will post quotes that best represent me on my present journey.

2-pushed them all away

As with challenges and awards, there is no obligation to accept. With that being said, my nominees are:
bipolar1blog
epic journal of my life
sliceoflife11