I’ve published a a couple of blogs I wrote in my personal journal before and I’m going to share a few more over the next week or two.
Through all the planning and talking about the whole Biggest Journey project, I’ve started to become really aware of just how different I feel compared to last year… infact compared to how I’d been feeling for years. This last year, since I was diagnosed as clinically depressed last February, has been a big journey in itself – learning what triggers extreme emotions and reactions, learning what’s important, learning how to cope with big challenges, and learning how to cope with the small ones too.
Coping is definitely the right word still, and I still feel like my life requires a certain degree of awareness and control everyday. I have to be aware of how I’m feeling, taking note of good days and bad days. I need to be able to recognise when I’m potentially going to react irrationally to a situation because I’m not coping… particularly getting annoyed about something. It’s a relatively simple process of recognising that I’m annoyed, looking at what I ‘think’ I’m annoyed at, realising it’s irrational and trying to work out what is really bothering me – Then, trying to do something about that. Sometimes I just need to tell someone that they’ve done or said something that’s upset or annoyed me… but sometimes I’m actually annoyed at myself and I’m feeling guilty. This can usually be resolved by putting things right, or apologising for something I feel guilty about.
This has become quite an important thing as I seem to feel guilt very easily, and then hold onto it for a long time… and it really eats away at me. If I can catch this early, and try and set things right, I can move on. Often, the person I feel guilty about upsetting has moved on already and doesn’t understand why I’m apologising… that doesn’t matter, the important thing is that I can then essentially forgive myself and get on with my day.
Anyway – this brings me to a personal post I was just re-reading about wanting more control. I still have to think about things a lot, but most of the time I feel in control. I’m coping. This is a good thing….
From my personal journal – 27th February 2011 | Control
If I could put my finger on one thing I really struggle with more than anything, it’s the feeling of not being in control.
I don’t mean so much as being in control of a situation, or a group of people, but more being in control of myself. This is something that is a real challenge at the moment, sometimes not knowing where I am emotionally from one minute to the next. I can be on a high and feel like I can take on anything, which is great. Then the next day, or sometimes even within the same day, I can hit a real slump and feel really low. I start to analyse and try and look for reasons for being down and matters are only made worse when I can’t see anything obvious. Sometimes it can be easier to try and pull myself out of it on my own, to try and rationalise things, but this becomes complicated when there’s a big part of you that just wants to be around those you love. Often they don’t know what to do, or say, and the fact that they’re frustrated by this makes you feel worse. You can start to feel like they’d be better off without you around at this point and the fact is that they probably would… but that doesn’t mean they don’t want you around. This whole situation can snowball if you’re not aware of it. Perhaps, if the thought of trying to cope on your own seems horrible, being around someone impartial or that you’re less emotionally tied to could be the answer.
As well as the highs and lows, there’s also the explosions. Not being in control of temper is horrible, terrifying in fact. For some reason, there are certain things that push the wrong buttons and I can just snap. I hate being angry, and not being able to control this is something that scares me enormously. There are moments when I find myself getting angry at the stupidest things… drivers not being courteous, seeing someone dropping litter; I saw someone deliberately drop litter outside a supermarket the other day, while stood less than 10 ft from a bin. It was like someone flicked a switch, I had a bit of a go at them. there’s no point going over whether they deserved it or not, but I’ve no idea what made me do it and that’s what troubles me. No one else said anything to her, which seemed to bother me too, and the people I was with seemed a bit taken a back like they couldn’t see why I cared so much.
Getting angry with strangers is one thing, and I really don’t like it, but getting angry with someone I love is really horrible. I have a young daughter who is doing all the things you’d expect a 3-4 year old to do, including knowing how to push your buttons. Sometimes it’s right to tell her off, she needs to learn write from wrong, but that’s not the same as getting angry. The look on her face if I lose my temper is heart breaking, she looks terrified, how can I make someone I care for so much feel like this. This haunts me, perhaps I shouldn’t be around her. I want to be around and I want my family to want me around. I know they love me for the best in me but, when I struggle to find the best in me, all I do is question what they see and why they bother. I want to be the good person that I know I can be, but sometimes I behave in a way that I just don’t like and I can’t seem to control that, to stop behaving like that.
The thing I find most frightening is the fact that sometimes I just want to let go, to just close my eyes and lose control, to let everything else just happen around me. This isn’t a feeling I get very often, but the scariest thing about it is how calming this feels when I do. I want to get control of my life again, to find that feeling of calm while I’m completely aware and at ease with everything and everyone that’s around me. I want to be able to stop, open my eyes and see everything and know I can deal with it.