Friday 20 December 2013

Appointment Updates and Christmas Plans

It's been nearly a month since I last posted, where has the time gone?! The days all seem to blur into one right now.

I've had the odd things I've wanted to write down, but nothing I could put (fluently) into a blog post. It's mainly little updates, my thoughts etc. Usually what I write about haha! This probably won't be a very long post and I'll subtitle each bit again. It seems to look a lot more organised that way!


I received a letter, the other day, from the physio department of my local hospital. This is for the bladder training (see the I Still Need to Talk post). They had me down for a date I couldn't make. My dad always brings me to appointments because of my anxiety with travelling alone, and this was the day he had to have a normal day shift instead of afternoon shift. I surprised myself with how confident I sounded when I finally phoned to ask to rearrange the appointment. I do have a lot of anxiety with phoning. It's more answering calls than making them, due to the fact that I can't plan a conversation when answering the phone. The odd time I'll do it without really thinking though. It's so strange. I mean, I'm pleased I can answer the phone confidently sometimes but I don't get why other times I'm terrified of it? Could this be to do with when my depression gets bad or something? Anyway, the appointment was changed no problem, and it's not much of a wait luckily. I'm curious to see if there's much they can do for me.

Christmas is such a busy time of year, I wasn't able to pre-book an appointment to discuss my bladder diary with the GP. I've just decided to wait until after the Christmas period. I'm still doing my bladder diary every day and if I show the days that were worst, then the doc is more likely to do something.

Brainfog (Trigger Warning: Body Image)

Last week my brainfog royally let me down when it came to sorting out my medication. I'm on 300mg Gabapentin; to be taken 3 times a day. Last week, I'd noticed I was a bit low but my damn brainfog made me very confused about how many were actually left and whether I still had another full box in my room. I thought I'd be able to last the weekend, but realised on the Friday that I only had one left! My mum rang up the doctors for me, to ask for an emergency prescription. They said they'd do it (after slightly telling me off for not being "more careful"). My dad went to pick it up after work, just before the surgery closed. They'd forgotten to do it!!! And it was too late to quickly get a doctor because they'd all left. You'd think an urgent prescription would take priority... For anyone who doesn't know much about Gabapentin, it's one of those meds that you have to wean yourself off as it can cause withdrawal symptoms. I think this can be fairly dangerous for some people. It can make you feel very very ill anyway. I did get withdrawal symptoms over the weekend. I felt boiling hot, then freezing cold. I would get cold sweats then normal sweats (yum!), shaking, generally feeling very out of it. I also felt very sick all the time. I had other symptoms but I wasn't sure if this was just part of the Fibromyalgia. I was worried it would be a lot worse though. Maybe if I'd been on a higher dose, then I would've been, but I'm glad I wasn't. I do eventually want to get off the Gabapentin anyway. They do absolutely nothing for me and I've been nothing but miserable on them. They are supposed to help with nerve pain, but mine is just as bad as it's always been. All they do is make me put on weight. Others say I look fine but I do hate the way my body looks. I want to exercise lots, do some intense workout, but I'd make my fibro even worse. It just wouldn't be worth it. So after Christmas, I'm going to really try and eat healthily. I hear yoga can be quite good for spoonies (google The Spoon Theory) too, so I'll ease myself into that and see how I go.


I'm still waiting on more contact from the disability advocacy service. I'm sending as much evidence as I can, so the tribunal are fully aware of where I'm at with mental health, hospital appointments etc. Which reminds me, I have another two letters to copy and send! It annoys me that my condition is taken less seriously because I'm not seeing a specialist. I've seen a Rheumatologist once, and because he was happy with the meds I was on, and there was nothing he could do to sort of 'fix' me, then all he could do was discharge me after confirming the diagnosis. Maybe they'll take my bladder condition more seriously now I'm seeing a physio for it? Or maybe I'm being too optimistic... I really need to chase up this advocacy service anyway.

Mental Health (Trigger Warning: Suicidal Thoughts)

I feel a bit abandoned and cynical about the whole thing at the moment. I have a referral/review letter from my Psychologist due to the things we talked about in the last appointment with her (see I Still Need to Talk post for more details). As I said before, the GP had referred me to the Mental Health Team and RAS had discharged me with absolutely no contact, as I hadn't actually attempted self harm or suicide, even though I regularly had thoughts. The only reason I haven't carried anything out is because of family and friends, and the fact that I live with my parents. If I lost any of them, I fear that would be the tipping point. This is why I get so so upset when I do lose the friends I thought I had. I know I should just think "screw 'em" but when you think you know someone, you think they are understanding and supportive, and they just decide they are done with you, it's like a slap across the face. It is hard to move on from that. You want to know what you've done. Did you say something insensitive? Or are they just bored of you not getting better yet? Whatever it is, I'd rather know. But I probably never will. The friends who stick by me are my support network, the people I can turn to without fear of judgement. They can even distract me from my darkest thoughts and I am extremely grateful to them for that. I feel guilty that I burden them with these thoughts (which is why I tend to be the most honest in this blog) but I'm glad they are there when I need them, and vice versa.  I include my Twitter friends alongside my IRL ones in this of course.

I did digress a bit there! Anyway, back to the mental health stuff. So, I was very honest with my Psychologist and she sent me a copy of this review letter. It states that I was at a step 2 intervention level with her, doing guided self help; based upon a Cognitive Behavioural Therapy program. She now wants me to be seen by a High Intensity Therapist at a step 3 intervention level. I've googled these to see what is different between the two. Correct me if I'm wrong, but step 2 is for mild to moderate mental illness and step 3 is for moderate to severe right? Step 3 sounds like the right level for me; as I have been diagnosed with moderate to severe Depression and (I think) moderate Anxiety. In the letter she talks about complexities of my mental health too. This may be to do with my thoughts about the abortion and also my anxieties with bladder stuff. It looks like she's upped my 'risk' bit as well.

I've not had any contact from the Mental Health/RAS team yet and I think that's why I'm feeling a little cynical. I wonder whether they will refer me back to my GP, without contacting me (and actually assessing me!). What do I do in the meantime? Do I bug the hell out of Mind/Rethink? The emergency numbers are there, and the Psychologist has insisted I ring them but if I'm completely broke down and in a mess, the last thing I'll want to do is pick up the phone. I guess all I can do is wait and cope in the meantime.


I am kind of looking forward to Christmas this year; although I'd like a bit more time to actually prepare. How is it the 20th already??!! My mum and I decided to make presents this year. We both love baking so we're giving out little boxes of handmade treats to close family. The last of the cards need to be sent out today as well. I forgot how bloody expensive stamps can be. Can't we all just live on the same street? :)

We're going to try and plan out the Christmas dinner so that it is as stress free as possible, and we won't have too much to do on the day (precooking the day before etc).

I'm going to leave it here and actually get something to eat now! My next post will most likely be after my Physio appointment. I hope everyone has a lovely Christmas and New Year :) <3