“Do I” is a song by Luke Bryan, one of my favorite male artists. Every time I hear the song, I wonder if my therapist and I are still a good fit. I think we are as we have been together for so long, but I often wonder if I am too much for her to bear or that I am a burden to her.
I went to Starbucks for the first time in four weeks. All my baristas were gone from the Davis location. I was so bummed not to see familiar faces. I hope they were off that day or just on vacation. I will be super bummed if I have to deal with new people. I will go there tomorrow and see how they make a clover coffee. I won’t order their reserve, just the Pike. I seem to like that better than their regular iced coffee, probably because it is made fresh.
I am still feeling good. Today on Mental Health chat on Twitter, the discussion was bipolar disorder. I have been diagnosed with bipolar as I have had some hypomanic episodes. I have never been full blown manic. I had one episode while I was in the hospital. I was really jocular and upbeat. I was also really racy and despite taking Ativan regularly, it still didn’t alter my mood. This lasted until I took some pain meds and then I crashed, hard over this past weekend. It was fun while it lasted and I wish I still felt that great. I felt like nothing could touch me. Suicide was furthest from my mind and I felt like I was on top of the world, even though I was in a psych hospital. It was very strange. I was expecting to go down, but I wasn’t expecting to be “that” down. I was really tired and just needed to rest but I was too restless to actually sleep. I took a prn to calm down some and finally was able to get some rest. Everyone was telling me I looked tired and down. With my anticipated discharge on Monday, I was thinking that it was not going to happen. I really didn’t want to leave the hospital feeling the way I did this weekend. It was such a major depressive episode that I didn’t want to chance leaving the hospital and then acting on my thoughts. So I had to practically beg to stay one more day. My case manager asked me why I wanted to die. I told her to end the pain and the indignity that I was feeling with my disability. I really just wanted to say “are you fucking kidding me”? This hospitalization, I experienced everything I do when I am home. I crapped my pants, leaked urine, was suicidal more than a few times, and was overall, severely depressed. The hypomania was a godsend. I just wish it lasted longer than it did. But it never does and the longer it lasts, the worse my depression is. I think I had a total of 12 hours of it. Not long enough to do any financial damage or anything, but enough to let me know I was alive again, that something inside me wants to keep going no matter what the suicidal thoughts might be.
My writing partner has suggested that I write a book about coping as a suicide attempt survivor. I have been giving it some serious thought and I think I can write it. I don’t know if I am going to write it in blog form or book form yet. Depends on how much I can actually write. But a large part of what works for me is already out there but people don’t utilize it. For example, I gave the crisis response plan (see this blog about it) to one of the patients because it was less confusing than what the hospital was giving out about distress tolerance. The hospital uses DBT type of works, which is fine for some people but may not fit for everyone. And, who the fuck is going to look at a piece of paper when they are in crisis mode?? I know I am not. I have been there too many times. But I have found that the crisis response plan has been helpful to me since David Jobes uses it in his work with suicidal patients.
One of the mental health counselors was interested in my book and the SSF, Suicide Status Form (see my comparisons of psychological pain scales for more information). I wish I could publish it on my blog but it is not available in electronic form and I would be violating copyrights. I use this in my therapy when I am suicidal. It helps because it gives my therapists some way of knowing which areas are causing me to want to die. I think it would be wonderful to use in an inpatient stay but I don’t get to make those types of decisions. Anyway, this MHC and I were talking about it and it was so good to talk about clinical stuff with someone again rather than just stuff about me. It was like being back in academia again where exchanging ideas is so important for learning. I just wish my treatment team was on board with my ideas for my treatment than just saying that I have to stay away from suicide stuff. I told them that I can’t. It is apart of me like breathing. I am always thinking about what is best for me and I am always searching for an answer to end the suicidal thoughts. Just telling me to stop is not going to work. I read clinical stuff as well as blogs because I want to keep abreast of the latest research. Even though I am no longer a member of the AAS, I still keep up with the suicide research. I wish I could afford their membership but I am on such a fixed budget that I can’t. I also would love to have the archives of suicide research journal but again, I can’t afford membership. It totally sucks. I was hoping that the sales of my book would provide me with additional income but it hasn’t taken off the way that I wanted it to. I have not reached my goal of selling 100 books, though I am half way there. While I was in the hospital, I sold two books. Not my personal copies, just through Amazon. I did bring one with me to give away but I never did. I still have it. My book signing has not gone well. It brought extra income just to buy food and the essentials. The struggles of the writer. I just have to find the right audience to get my book sold.
I am planning on getting my book reviewed by the AAS (American Association of Suicidology). It will be sent out next week along with a book for my editor. I have been meaning to send it out but things always seemed to get in the way. I wasn’t planning on being in the hospital for so long. I really thought I was going to stay a few days and that would be it but they had other plans when I told them I was going to kill myself when I got out. Hospitals tend to frown upon that. I put them in a “bind”. Sorry, but that was how I was feeling. I really was in bad shape and all that I was feeling felt normal to me. Looking back, I see that I wasn’t as rational as I thought I was. I guess that small overdose was the wake up call for my outpatient treaters to put me in the hospital.