My Mental Health Journey | 25/06/2018 - 01/07/2018

As I said in my last post, I have in recent times forgotten why I started this blog and the main reason was because of my mental health and me wanting to share my ongoing story of what I was going through, how it was all affecting me and keeping everyone up to date on my 'recovery' and I want to get back to doing that rather than these once in a blue moon update posts I have been putting out there.

Today's post is a recap of my last week, it was something I use to do quite some time ago and I plan on doing one of these posts every week from now on to keep everyone up to date and now I am back in therapy and on a new medication it is another way of tracking my progress of how I am doing.

Therapy

So last Monday (25/06/2018) was my first therapy session and it went a lot better than what I was expecting. I was a bundle of anxiety the days leading up to it and the day itself was no better. On the way there I had to make a pit stop at a Tescos to use the bathroom before getting back on my way and I was very much contemplating giving in and going home and rescheduling the appointment. If I was to do that though, I knew the next appointment would be even more difficult and the likelihood would definitely have been that I wouldn't have made it.

Pushing through wasn't as much as a relief as I thought it would have been. The first half an hour I was very much just as anxious as I was in the car on the way there and my mind was constantly telling me to get up and leave but it did subside eventually, definitely not to a point where I felt calm but to a point where I knew I could make it through the hour and my mind was more in favour of 'everything will okay' rather than 'everything will not be okay'.

The basis of this appointment was to find out if anything had changed since the initial appointment, being it was nearly a month ago, and then for my therapist to find out what I wanted to get out of therapy and going through how she could help me going forward and basically outlining a rough plan of action.

All in all, it was a good session, it was very much what I expected from the session itself to the anxiety I experienced getting there etc. The fact I made it there is a good and positive sign for next week and hopefully being on the medication things are only going to get better from here on out as I am getting close to the timeframe for when the medication should start taking effect.

DWP & ESA

The next big thing this week was I finally after what has felt like a lifetime I received some money from my benefits claim. Without going into a whole load of detail as I am making a separate post about all of this, I was advised to make a new ESA claim in March, they denied my new claim so I asked for a reconsideration where I sent medical evidence of a new condition, they overturned the decision in May, after two weeks of hearing nothing about my claim or being paid anything I started chasing them up mid June. I spent two weeks to the day on the phone everyday being promised callback after callback after callback, constantly being told different information, spending a total of over 10 hours on hold to finally have my claim reopened last Thursday to then be told I need a sick note to cover the time since I started my claim before I could be paid. So on Friday I managed to get a sick note from my GP and was paid the money I was owed from the DWP. 

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To say it has been a ballache and stressful is playing it down massively. During this time I made a complaint about the service and everything that happened and I am waiting to hear more about that. All of the stress this has caused has definitely had a negative impact on my mental health conditions which is the last thing I wanted when the reason I am having to claim benefits is because of those conditions limiting my ability to work at this moment in time and so I can continue to pay my bills and get the help I so desperately need. Anyway, look out for a new post in the next couple of weeks where I explain all of this is more detail including last years claim and the financial difficulties I have faced.

Low Mood

With being on the fluoxetine for a month to the day over the last week the side effects have been subsiding to the point where they are no longer present day to day and with that came a period of relief from the constant low mood and suicidal feelings I was experiencing, which is always great as feeling that way for any period of time is unbelievably difficult and a constant struggle to get through, however, on Friday night for, in my eyes, no reason whatsoever the extremely low mood decided to show its face again and didn't let up until late afternoon Sunday.

I am prone to having episodes like this in the past so it is nothing new and a lot of the time I do kind of have to wait them out to pass. Being back in therapy it is something I definitely want to explore and see why they occur and what I can do about them as for now nothing I have really tried has helped and basically have to spend every waking moment trying to distract myself till they pass which you can imagine is a struggle in itself and not ideal and sometimes near enough impossible.

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Other than that it has been an alright week. I'm not doing a lot at the moment if I am being honest because of how bad things have been and my world has become very small. I am back preseason football training once a week and trying to get out for a walk and taking pictures as and when I can (having some money again I should be able to start doing this more) and I worked on a new collaboration which you can see here.

I am starting to feel a lot more motivated and working on my blog and creating content and as I continue to feel better I will be trying to incorporate more things into my day and seeing people with the end goal of being mentally well enough to being back in work and living a fulfilling life.

As I said I am bringing these weekly posts back indefinitely! and I have a new monthly post series which will be starting at the end of this month.

Thanks for reading, feel free to ask me anything in the comments section below, I am happy to answer.

EK