I used to write in my journals all the anxiety and fear and depression that swept through my heart. The pain of living night after night in despair so great I thought I would never see the light of day again. It was cathartic and once the words were on paper (or in a word doc like they are now), I didn’t have to deal with them. The feelings were out, I felt better. I didn’t have to remember anymore.
I used to write blogs that had some purpose, whether in my clinical papers I wrote or my daily struggles with suicide and depression and chronic pain. It opened a portal so I could share myself with others who were going through the same things. It was the last remaining joy in my life before pain took over. I have been struggling since. Where I would used to write sometimes twice a day and the odd three, I barely write twice a week, if that many. I’ve lost hope in things.
I used to go to therapy with the hope that things would get better. Despite going through 10 in a short period of time (8 years), I still held on that the “right” one was out there. Therapist number 12 I thought was that “right” person until 16 years later we ended, on our anniversary date. She no longer wanted to work with me anymore. I had been in a lot grief since that day. Took me two months to try and figure out if I needed therapy and why I needed therapy. So therapist number 14 came along (13 was the interim therapist I saw while 12 was on maternity leave). He was different from all my previous therapists. He frustrated me more than any of them put together. I skipped sessions because of the anger. Then there were sessions where I felt we were making progress but like the other therapists before him, didn’t go anywhere the following week. In Jan of this year (2019) I realized I couldn’t stay with him after he told me to Google some relaxation stuff for my PTSD. That was the last straw. I had sprained my ankle during this time and decided going to therapy and working on my ankle were going to tax me like it did before. I got physically better, telling him I would go back to him when I was done. I never did.
By March of this year, I was having serious mood shifts of suicidality. In Jan because pain had been really bad, I planned a date to end it. It was the end of March. I had some of my ducks in a row to end it. But the month came and I didn’t have so many ducks as I thought I did. I fell into despair. Pain was keeping me up. The insomnia that I had infrequently, started to become more chronic. I was spending more and more time awake than I was sleeping. Add in not having a therapeutic relationship and I was barely above water. I kept writing my psych of 26 years how bad I felt nearly every day. We were in frequent contact as she was the only person in my team. The day I was to end it, it was raining. I had wanted to end it outside in a desolate place. The rain spoiled it and I had an appointment with my psych that day. I saw my psych as I have never skipped an appointment with her and wasn’t going to start.
April was torturous. By the middle, my psych wanted me to go in the hospital and I said no. I asked her why she wanted me still alive because at that point, I felt so worthless, I had no idea why she wanted me alive other than she “had to.” She told me some good reasons that I still remember. I tried to hold on to those. I starting thinking about writing another book that would be so outside my realm of mental health but would take a lot of research to do it. It would be a challenge and I hoped I was up for it. That lasted a few days. Then I was back in the despair and this time, it wasn’t letting me go.
I used to think that the hospital was a safe haven, a place to recover and get well, learn new coping skills and then be able to face the challenges outside better. With insurances no longer covering long stays, this is nearly impossible. Some people are lucky to stay past three days. Others stay just 24 hours like that has any benefit. I was hesitant to go back in. I was just about as suicidal you could be without actually attempting and I was getting close. There were a few nights where I didn’t think I would make it through the night. I honestly have no clue what kept me here or how I did it. I stayed for three weeks and then my whole world went to smithereens.
I was supposed to see my psych the following week but she changed it to the following Monday. She said she had some news to tell me and I listened. The institution she had been apart of for 30 years was letting her go. She didn’t go into the reasons and I asked her if writing a letter would help and she said no. I have been seeing her for 26 years. My heart broke in a million pieces but I didn’t know it yet. I still had one week left of seeing her and it would be the last until she was some place else, though she didn’t know where yet. She wanted to stay in academia and Boston is the academia capital. All the while I was to see a new therapist, number 15. The first visit didn’t go well. She hammered me with questions, took my history (I tried to stay away from suicide as that freaks mental health professionals out), and who I was seeing for psych. She asked me about my hospital stay and I thought oh shit here we go. She asked what I was to do with crisis. I said call my psych. But according to her, my psych had “terminated” me. I couldn’t comprehend that. I knew my psych didn’t, she said so and she doesn’t lie. She still wanted to be in my care, to take care of me. I didn’t know if I would see this therapist again. She was nonchalant about setting up another appointment with me. I said I give new therapists at least three sessions before deciding if they would work. She agreed on that point.
I don’t know what will happen the next few weeks. I am back to being highly suicidal without a voice. My one or two places where I catharized my feelings are blank, and have been since the day my psych said she was temporarily leaving me. Wed I got a call to see a new psych and I nearly had a meltdown in the lobby of the building where I first started seeing my psych. But I had to see my pcp so had to keep things together. I have had some medical problems this past week that are still unresolved. I never thought my body would be broken down so much at 43, but then, I never thought I would live to see this age.
I used to believe I would always write in some way, shape, or form. I never thought my words would be hard to reach for. Between the physical and emotional pain, the medications I take, and the pressure of trying to stay some what alive for whatever reason when I just want to fucking die, I am at a loss of words. Some times they breakthrough the constriction I am in, the blinders that say that I should die and nothing else matters. My psych asked me if I would be alright for next week, and she said Monday. I told her I didn’t know. I still don’t know. I want to find that desolate place and end it so fucking much. The thought of dealing with CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome) without pain meds is freaking me out, especially as they don’t work as they once did. It is no fault of the medication, just the disease process. Eventually, there will be nothing that will work for it and I cannot cope with that. I cannot imagine spending my life in so much pain when I already spent 28+ years of it managing the mental illness part of me. I used to believe there was hope out there. Now I am not so sure anymore.