I can’t do this on less.
I’m not strong enough
I’m not happy enough
I’m not … you get the picture.
For the past 6 weeks, I have been on a lesser dose of medication and it hasn’t been one of my better ideas.
Like an itch you can’t scratch, a picture frame that just wont hang correctly or the word that is on the tip of your tongue that you just can’t remember, things haven’t been the same. I haven’t been the same.
In fact I have been feeling more and more irritable and irritated and wrong. The whirring has started, the restlessness and self doubt. I’m dissappointed that I can’t do this more on my own. I kind of expected that some of my new found habits would actually be helping to sustain me better immediately.
So is this what it is going to be like? Does this mean I will need medication forever? Will I always need medication.
Before you all say, but if you were a diabetic, you wouldn’t think twice about taking medication for life. Well yes, I know that. In fact I am one of those people who have hurrumped at others who can’t see that taking medication for mental health reasons is just what needs to be done at that time, and if that means forever, then so be it.
Obviously I really only thought this for others and not for myself.
What I am learning to do ( and obviously I am a slow learner at this! ) is that I need to learn accept things as they are. Not how I think they should be, how I perceive that they are, or how I hope they might be. Just to let it be.
- Acceptance in human psychology is a person’s assent to the reality of a situation, recognizing a process or condition (often a negative or uncomfortable situation) without attempting to change it, protest.
As humans I think we are wired to think that our brain should just act the way we want it act. I’m the master of my brain. That a mental illness is not really a real illness that might need real medicine, like other illnesses. Imagine thinking like that if you had a chronic illness like say asthma, you don’t think less of yourself for having asthma, but somehow when it comes to mental health we think way less of ourselves.
At the very least, the concept of needing medication for anything other than a short term period is just not acceptable. It’s bad enough to admit to needing something, far worse to need it longer than an “acceptable” timeframe.
Well I have learnt that it is just not like that. A lifetime of thinking one way, can’t just be turned around in a short time frame.
By short, apparently that is 1-2 years.
Medium Term is 5-7 year
Long Term - well that is a lifetime of needing medication.
So where does that leave me right now. It leaves me going back to my doctor and getting my dose increased again.
I know what it is to feel happy from the inside and I want to feel that again.
I know what it is to not question everything people say through a prism of negative thoughts and doubt.
I know what it is to come home and not flop on the lounge in a morose frame of mind.
I know what it is to not get irritated by my team at work when things go wrong.
I know now what it is to feel acceptance in myself and I want it back.
I just have to think, like a person recovering from injury, you do all sorts of exercises to start working that muscle again and then you test to see whether you can dive back into the gym again.
Sometimes you think you are full rested, recovered and raring to go and after that first tentative gym session, realise that you are not quite there yet.
So you go back to your exercises and build up that muscle until you can try that again.
I think I need to do a few more strength building exercises before I attempt that full session again. It’s not a retreat just a regrouping before trying again.
It may be that I can never manage doing it on my own, but I will learn to accept that.