Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Breaking down the break down

I was sitting on the sofa, from where I hadn't moved in (insert random guess here). I lost time for I don't know how long, and when I did come round, I noticed cuts on my arms and thighs. I probably needed stitches on my right thigh, but to be honest, going to A+E for stitches, even when I am not an emotional wreck, is not something I do willingly.
I curled up on the sofa, head racing with everything. I was really triggered, not sure what it was that actually set me off, but I was whole hog reliving things all over again. One memory would trigger another one, and so on. This was roughly 5am.
I didnt even hear anyone coming into the flat (I live in temporary supported accomodation). Terry, one of the staff here, touched my leg. Not having a clue I even had company being so lost in my own head, I jumped a mile out of the chair. Her touching my leg, not only scared the bejaysus out of me, but it brought me back to the here and now. A mix of my heart trying to punch its way out of my chest and the realisation that I was safe, here and not back there, I broke down into tears, which soon made its way into full blown hysterical sobs. Terry and the other staff member, the manager unfortunately, told me they would leave me be for a bit and come back in 15mins.
I managed to calm myself down, realising that if they saw me in such a state it could lead to one of 2 things. They would either make me see a doctor and they would actually realise that I am not coping as well as I pretend, or they would ask me to find alternative accommodation as I would be deemed too “high risk” or “complex needs”. Thankfully it was the lesser of the 2, and when they returned in about 10mins, they told me I needed to go see a doctor. They asked when I last ate, I told them honestly, I didnt know, and when I last lept, again, I didnt know. I was trying to look composed and together, even changing my jammie bottoms so the blood couldnt be spotted on the old ones, and had started tidying round (i.e. aimlessly picking up things and binning them) to give the impression of a together, able to cope, not so much of a mess person. I couldnt stop shaking though. When they asked me what day it was, I said Sunday, erring on the side of caution, thinking maybe Saturday. It was Monday.
Emergency doc appointment was made, and I was told that I wouldnt be able to stay the night there if I didnt go. Jackie, the manager, was concerned I “might harm myself”, so I can understand her ensuring I would go see the doc so then her back was covered. I went, accompanied by aforementioned Terry, who said she noticed the dressing on my wrist, was it bad, etc. I was just standing, chain smoking, waiting on a taxi in the heat when I had put on a heavy coat and a warm outfit given that the last time I was out and seen the weather was Friday and it was raining then, and hadnt as much as looked out the window since.
Got to the docs, saw a different GP than I normally saw. It was also a male GP; wouldn't usually see one of those. He asked what was going on, I choked, couldnt make words come out. What the fuck are you meant to say? Well, There was a bit of an incident on Wednesday night, which on top of everything else is now getting me to the stage where I am verging on catatonic, cant cope, losing time to the extent of blotting out day at a time and when I do get even a little bit of energy, I am frantically researching the most effective suicide methods within my means.
Instead, I said I was flashbacking more, nightmares worse, not sleeping well and more time was being lost than usual...the abridged “dont section me” version.
He asked about the self harm when Terry piped in about that, I told him it was fine, manageable and I could treat the cuts at home. He asked to see them then.
Right, I am never a fan of showing people scars, cuts, etc. It is such a private thing. I would feel just as comfortable if he asked to give me a full gynae exam in front of the waiting room. I hesitated, Terry asked if she wanted me to leave, I said yes (the less of an audience the better), and showed him only the cut on my wrist, not wanting to take my trousers down and increase the humiliation further by showing thighs. He asked if I wanted the nurse to dress it, that it was too late to stitch but the nurse could maybe do something, etc, I politely declined and covered again.
He prescribed me some more chill pills and some zopiclone for sleep, asked if there was anything else he could do for me. I said thanks, and no thanks, went to leave before he asked “The Question”.
“Are you wanting to harm yourself further”
“Do you feel as though you want to end your life”
At this point, all the information about researched method, flying through my head, how to, how much, time intervals, notes, etc.
Who actually admits to that.  If you aren't suicidal, then you are not going to say you are.  If you are, why tell someone, surely then that would completely get in the way of you actually being able to do anything about it.
He called Terry back into the room. Still not printed off prescription, he chatted to her about...something...I barely heard it, printed off the prescription, said something about being glad he didnt have to fill out any “pink forms”, asked to see me again on Thursday, I explained I had an appointment with a different doc already on Wednesday, should I cancel, he said he didnt want to tread on anyone's toes, then, finally, he let me leave.

I avoided the “pink form” (have no idea what that is, but assuming it has something to do with the cracker factory).
Managed to eat something, and actually slept last night (thanks to chill pill/zopiclone mix).

Mentally, still a mess, but the GP actually helped. I am less of a mess.

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