I cried at my mental health nurse’s appointment today. ‘I’m just not managing my pain very well,’ I said. She asked if this was part of my perfectionism, or if something else was going on. ‘I think it’s partly because the pain is worse, and partly because now the mania is coming down the pain is just there again.’ I said. But it’s the nights that are worst. And I am doing everything I can to try and manage without taking too much medìcine – trying to get by with taking as little medicatión as I can, because I don’t know when I can get into to see my doctor again, and I don’t like having to ask for more paìnkillers. I told one friend at uni, an ex-nurse, that I had a bad night the other night and had to take 200 mg of tramadól and I let her reaction really get to me and I shouldn’t have – she had no idea of the chronic pain I live with, I shouldn’t let one person’s reaction get to me this much. I’m doing what I can by moving around more, using ice packs, setting up a program on the computer that stops me every twenty minutes so I don’t sit and type for too long, but the pain has just been sooo bad… (I did call up and make a doctor’s appointment late this afternoon – she had a cancellation, so I can see her next week. What a relief.)
I have to remember to tell the Very Helpful Psychiatrist when I see her on Monday that I’m getting the shakes a little bit, but whether that’s the medicatìon, pain, or anxiety – who knows. It’s swings and roundabouts. You treat one thing and something else pops up. You then have to decide – just how badly do you want to treat the next symptom? *headdesk*
I am definitely coming down from the mania. I don’t want to spiral into a depression. Talk about your rapid cycling… I managed to get to my appointment with the mental health nurse on time today, but I didn’t do a full face of make-up for the first time in a long time, just face powder, blush, lippy, mascara – which I then proceeded to cry off. I really must invest in some waterproof mascara, especially if I’m headed towards depression again. My skin is behaving itself for a change, so I felt like I could just get away with face powder today. No doubt it will be in the clinical notes – everything goes in the clinical notes.
Before I went out I put on the first dress I ever bought from TS14+, the one that Mr Beloved referred to as my ‘WW1 battleship camouflage dress’ when I first got it. It’s too big for me now, it flares out too much at the sides to look attractive on me, especially over the mesh sleeved underdress. Oh dear. Another one for the donation pile. Looks like I’ll have to spend more money on some new dresses for summer after all – maybe once we’ve recovered a bit financially from the last hit. I am glad to have lost the weight but I’m still getting used to the idea that things don’t fit the same way. I have enough clothes to manage provided no one minds seeing me in the same things all the time, (who notices? I don’t) and provided I don’t mind wearing scruffy stuff at home, where too big shorts and t-shirts really don’t matter so much.
I’m still trying to work on my story for class. Re-writing it and tightening it down, but I’ve got a way to go yet – the maximum length is 10% over the 2000 word limit, and at the moment I’m at around 2500 words. It needs work, but I’m getting to the point where reading it on the screen is getting difficult – I’ll have to print it off, get out the red pen and get to work moving paragraphs around and editing places where information is repeated or unnecessary. This iteration of the story is worth 25% of our marks for the course; then we get it back and a further 30% of the course marks come from how well we edit and re-work the story, which we then re-submit. So it’s something I’ll be working on until the end of October. (That sounds like a long time but is really only a few weeks, when you think about it… almost September as I write this.) At the moment I just keep working on it every day, nipping here, tucking there, a sentence at a time, trying to make it better.
And now somewhere around the start of November I have my brother’s birthday party to look forward to. Not sure of the details yet, just that something will be happening, and the idea of seeing my family again has me teary with happiness. It’s been far too long. Even if I only get over to Adelaide for a couple of days, I’m looking forward to seeing everyone.
The storm that was trying to build all day seems to have gone around us. We’re supposed to get a thunderstorm tomorrow, and sometimes this sort of weather makes my pain worse – my back and hips like to predict weather along with the kookaburras and the Bureau of Meteorology. There must be some scientific explanation for barometric pressure and joint pain but I bet the rheumatologists don’t have any peer reviewed papers on it. (Not that I’m going to go looking. I’m hurting too much.)