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they keep calling me

The pills want me back. They won't leave me alone. I can remember the last time I called my dealer. It was around a year ago. I don't know if I could even still contact him if I tried. He'd have to still be around and willing to take a call from somebody who he probably doesn't remember. The sad thing is I have been kicking around the idea of doing so. I've been clean long enough that physically there is no addiction, should not even be tolerance. It's all psychological but there is that part deep down that is just screaming to get high. Because it's the only way I know how to feel good and it has been so long since I have felt actual good instead of just temporary relief from the anxiety that normally has me jumping at my own shadow. I recognize this as my addiction trying to take over, and I don't have to hand over the control to that behavior anymore. I also recognize that it would be so very much easier to give in. I won't take the step of calling a dealer, but I know that if a connection were to drop into my lap there would be no stopping me. Maybe it's just easier to deal with an addiction, which I have dealt with already for some time, than it is to deal with the underlying problems that I was self medicating in the first place. Is that such a devil's bargain? We all gotta die somehow. I know it's wrong but it doesn't feel wrong. Most of my mistakes generally start off with thoughts like this though. Then there is the fear that this will only escalate until I give in, but that is only partially true. It will escalate and it will feel like more than I can bear, but it will also descend eventually. The problem is having enough patience to resist long enough for the de-escalation to occur.

Ralph

Ralph

 

riding the wave

practicing acceptance. No one understands. That's okay. Maybe things will go better next time around. Things go up and down like a wave. They repeat like a wave, too. Pattern and variation. Not sure how I'll feel tomorrow, oh well, might just practice acceptance on that too. Feels like I'm too sensitive, but the world will fall apart if I let anything go. Maybe this isn't the truth but I want to at least try to control everything. I still feel like the next beating is just around the corner. I've been walking on eggshells trying to keep fate from beating me. This is where the anxiety comes from, and I've let much of my life be overshadowed by this. Maybe it is possible to reclaim the present though.

Ralph

Ralph

 

Good day

Today I didn't have any paranoia and derealization seems to be down as well. I hadn't even noticed the derealization until it eased up a bit. Had a good day at work and no bad news. Might be getting some opportunity to go to HQ which strangely makes me feel way less depressed, like super happy. I guess I might have a strong desire to feel important at work. Well, I'm going to hope that I can stay on this path for a while but try not to get too attached so that I don't worry about what else could happen in the future. I really wish I could worry less. I have though because when I read I block everything else out and I have been reading often lately.

Ralph

Ralph

 

wane

Every once in a while something happens that makes me wonder if someone is watching out for me. I lost some stuff that I had been trying to get rid of, but was still holding onto because of my addiction. I don't know how long it's been gone because I only recently went to throw it out and found it was already taken care of. Anxiety has taken a step down since this happened. Intrusive thoughts are overbearing but I still feel like they are just thoughts - I don't have to listen to them. Nonetheless it is good I don't have supplies for a hasty exit lying around. Suicide fantasies running through my head even though I always chicken out when it comes to making plans. Wish I could quit waffling on this question. I feel like I am living for some level of moral achievement, that is I don't want to die until I've conquered my vices. Once I have, I will feel ready to go in peace. Ironically one of those vices seems to be indulging in morbid suicide fantasies. I wonder what it would be like to be free of that.

Ralph

Ralph

 

mistake

Had some drinks today, only 3 but that was enough to trigger near panic. Not used to being this sensitive, feel guilty about every little thing lately. Highly isolated socially but unsure how to reach out. Want to go back to hometown except not sure if my old friends would still have room for me in their lives. Would probably do better there than over here though. Have a job here, would need to network and all that to get a job there. I don't know where I belong, thinking (again) I would be better off dead. Luckily meds supporting me well enough to not get too far down that road and notice it's just pain and not really a decision I want to make at this point. It's so much pain though. Crying 2-3 times a day, wishing I could remember when I could go weeks/months without crying. Then again when it went that long I wondered what it would be like to cry. Keep forgetting, and then I get what I wish for. That's my problem.

Ralph

Ralph

 

over that, for now

Guess I had to go through some grieving over mistakes I've made. Not so worried about it anymore. Still haven't figured out personal identity yet so there's still that. It occurred to me that I'm not making my future any better by overturning my past in the search for a cause to my current troubles. Still, a self defeating attitude is like an addiction and thinking in a new way feels unusual to me. So much easier to fall into hopelessness and self hate. But just for the time being I am going to accept the things I cannot change, at least the things I know that I cannot change which would be anything in the past. I don't have to like it but I do have to accept it. If there is something I don't like about what I did, all I can do is work to change that now and in the future.

Ralph

Ralph

 

I don't know who I am

Should I be an addict or clean? Am I sexually active or prude? Accept things where they are or risk it all for a chance at something better, but also a chance at something significantly worse? No matter where I stand the grass always looks greener on the other side. It seems when I do something I feel like doing, I regret my impulsive act, but then when I don't do something then I regret the missed experience. Then it occurs to me I'm beating myself up now that there's no one else around to do it for me. I promised to myself not to become an abuser like the adults I grew up with but I'm abusing myself anyway, which leads to more regret. Sheesh I'm good at this. There has to be a distortion in there somewhere because I keep turning it around to regret. Or maybe some deeper regret that I'm not facing. I wonder how the people who say they live with no regrets do it. Do they just not feel regret for their own mistakes, or do they somehow know themselves so well that what they do still looks like a good idea in hindsight? I also wonder if there is any answer to the question of personal identity. How do people figure this out?

Ralph

Ralph

 

Little things

Small things can make a big difference. When I'm hydrated my anxiety level is manageable. I still feel paranoid about leaving the house but at least not getting a panic attack. I've noticed that usually when I do have a panic attack I haven't been hydrating. Reading is another small thing that helps. It's relatively guilt free and provides an escape while also helping my concentration. I don't know how it helps, all I know is that I can do things more smoothly and mindfully after an hour of reading than I can before I've read anything. Maybe just coincidence, will need to experiment more. I'm trying to have a positive attitude. I am a little afraid about this in that I have a superstition that worrying prevents bad things from happening, which means if I worry less, then something really bad is going to come crashing down on me. I hope that doesn't happen. I'm tired of living my life in a state of constant fear. I want to be the cheerful person I used to be.

Ralph

Ralph

 

good self bad self

dual identity. sometimes I am my genuine self, but at others I let people walk all over me or I do the damage to myself. Switching not predictable or controllable. Most of the day I have been good ralph but in the morning I was not. Romanticizing death. In danger of doing something bad, but careful to avoid the opportunity. Interesting things in my head. For a while the multiple channels at the same time stopped, but now it's back. It happened so gradually I didn't notice it when it went away but now that it's back I notice it was gone for a while. Glad to be free of that for some time even if it was temporary. Wish I knew how to get back there again, but it can be entertaining when you have nothing better to do. Feels like I have written that before.

Ralph

Ralph

 

Addict thoughts

Lately feeling like giving in even though urges aren't so bad to deal with anymore. It feels like I'm a disaster even when I would to outside observers appear to have my act together. So even if things are going well it will still feel like shit. How do you think your way out of that one? Drugs become appealing as a way out. A quick ticket to a dirt nap and maybe a few good times along the way. And I miss the good times. Only thing stopping me is that the good times stopped before I did. I mean there was a point where I decided this wasn't working anymore. Even felt like God was involved. Now that I have some distance from it it seems like it wasn't so bad. Guess this is the overconfidence that precedes a relapse. I know I don't really want to relapse. I fantasize about getting high and even dream about it, although I don't want to think about the downside to that. The health and potential legal consequences. The continued cravings. Keep trying to remind myself of this since awareness of the costs seems to have been missing in my past screw-ups. Also trying to keep myself into music which is a form of escape that isn't so bad for me. Still feels like an uphill fight though. Wish there were some way to rest without sliding back down.

Ralph

Ralph

 

Maybe this is growing up

Last week therapist basically said just don't feel that way when I complained about feeling like a hopeless failure. Not sure how to take that. I have been making progress but from her suggestions I feel invalidated, like I don't really have a problem and am just complaining about normal everyday annoyances that anyone with a spine should be able to just get over. That's the problem though, is that I don't know how to "get over" things and that is what I am paying a professional to help me out with. I don't want to keep paying this person good money to give me the same advice I could get from my mom for free. Yet I don't want to go through another damn intake again rehashing all the difficult things that happened in my childhood so I am thinking of just chucking therapy and seeing what happens. Maybe I'm so much better already that I don't even need it anymore, although I still feel like there is some past trauma that I need to work through. And I'm still isolated and avoidant, and my depression causes me to lose interest in most everything, which interferes with my job and social life. Unfortunately I can't seem to get anyone to care even if I pay them. Maybe that's society trying to tell me that I'm not worth saving. Maybe I just have the wrong therapist, but I wonder how to find a good one. Or maybe being an adult just means you give up on getting better and accept that you are what you are. Settle for what you've got instead of dreaming of something better and then trying to get there. If that's the case though, then I'm not sure I'll ever grow up. Alternatively maybe growing up is figuring out who you are and willing to be that person even when that means not fitting in. This is also difficult but certainly less discouraging than the former idea.

Ralph

Ralph

 

Stressed but better

Feel like self harm impulses are leaving, more clear lately. It's much easier to be sober. I've been more self disciplined due to volunteer work. My regular work is kicking my butt lately though. So, overly stressed but depression wise seeing some relief.

Ralph

Ralph

 

unfeeling

Been numb for a few days, usually means calm before the storm. Feel like I'm sliding today. Suicidal thoughts, practically used to this by now. Trigger seems to be thinking of the future. Plenty of reasons to worry. Feel better when I find ways to be creative. Seems strange. Used to thinking of creativity as a luxury, or a gift you either have or you don't. Now it's something I have to practice, or else dark thoughts take over. Then again, maybe the dark thoughts have their place. Still ambivalent; trying to be optimistic but at the same time feeling fake for trying to look like I have a direction when in fact I'm lost.

Ralph

Ralph

 

Lonely

Isolating myself, but don't want to. Need to get better at social skills. Want to experiment with Mensa gathering, maybe hanging out with smart people will be easier. Also thinking about joining a church to find people with similar values. Not a fundamentalist church or even Catholic but hopefully can find a progressive church that takes the values seriously without being too militant about imposing values/worldview on others. Goal would be to make one or two friends. Very unsure what to do about relationship. Feeling like this long distance thing is not sustainable, but I don't have any other sufficient reason to live. Self esteem would be negative without support of boyfriend. Really miss him. Wish I could get a job where I would be transferred to Bangkok. Maybe should start working on that dream.

Ralph

Ralph

 

A day without anxiety

Today I had no dizziness, feeling faint, or other physical anxiety symptoms. Excited about this because it's good to see that it is possible to have relief without drugs. I still think meds have a place in the tool box though. Depression still something of an obstacle. Countering thoughts of hopelessness with CBT tools. Worthlessness is harder to counter. I have no plans for the present or future since I never planned to be alive this long. Better figure something out.

Ralph

Ralph

 

fractured images

Working on why/how to live. If I am so afraid to die for nothing then there must be something I want to live for. Coming up blank on the usual candidates such as family, service, making the world a better place, etc. All seems fake or nice to think about but no follow through when I try to do it. When I try to figure it out it's like something I can't face yet is in the way, trying to get my attention but I know there is pain in it so I shy away. It feels like something and nothing at the same time. Fear of the unfeeling, losing contact with emotion and then having emotions about the lack of emotion. It doesn't make sense, but in a way I don't mind. I'm not lost I'm exploring. Yeah. That's it. I could be rapidly approaching the point where I finally take my medicine so to speak and face the shards of memories stalking my awareness. Some of them are good, which holds my attention. It's like reaching through broken glass for something beautiful, but I don't know how to grasp it. Panic is just around the corner, but I am familiar enough with it that I can manage it now. I am hearing the music again. Practicing more, sometimes just riffing on scales and every once in a while I'll play something that doesn't seem to be me, but the music coming through me. The reason I play is that it calms my racing thoughts, but to get good music out of my instrument every so often is kind of nice too.

Ralph

Ralph

 

Living for something so as not to die for nothing

I think my thoughts about death may be about a desire to live for something larger than myself. Then again, maybe a desire for selflessness is really just another avoidance tactic (martyrdom - I must be a good person; look how much I allow myself to suffer). I push people away because I learned a long time ago not to trust others to fulfill my needs, but that isolation has led to a lack of meaning. The needs for meaning and connection don't seem to be ones I can fulfill without taking some risk in trusting others. So far I've been quite focused on fulfilling my own needs through my own methods; after all I am the only one I can depend on. This has led to a state where I'm ashamed of the type of person I've become.

Ralph

Ralph

 

goals experiment check in 3 - success

Just played through whole song well enough to carry the part within a band, as in I could play it tonight if I got on stage. Therefore I consider this goal accomplished. Now about the experiment - how does it feel to accomplish a goal. I felt pretty good a couple days ago when I realized I would probably succeed. Now, however, it's mere relief that I didn't fail. In essence no sense of accomplishment aside from avoidance of the pain of regret. Maybe I need to accomplish bigger goals. Maybe goal directed behavior doesn't happen to be rewarding for me. Wonder if the latter would be a problem. It probably would be, since it leads to not accomplishing stuff and then there is the pain of regret. So I need to work my butt off just to feel... meh (Not good, not bad). If that's not depression in itself, then it's probably a lot of the reason I have to drag myself through the day.

Ralph

Ralph

 

Unstable(Trigger)

I feel like I've got my addictions packed away in a little box and stuffed in the back of my closet. I'm not acting on them now, but they are always back there trying to get out. Every time I give in, I regret it. I make a conscious choice sometimes as I did last time to sabotage myself. I remember thinking that recovery is kind of boring, so let's stick our hand on the hot stove just to make sure it can still feel. And the reason is always that I thought it would be good this time, like it was good the first few times. So I never quite throw the box away. Besides, I never learned how to really enjoy anything else. Then there is the deeper motive, getting to die without the fuss and bother of suicide. My few OD attempts were done with this idea of hoping I wouldn't wake up. Then I change my mind and start breathing again or whatever. It's a fine mess I've gotten myself into. At least I've still got my music

Ralph

Ralph

 

goals experiment check in 2

Fell behind on practicing so I don't have the song down the way I wanted to by now. My week 2 was going to be learn the fills and then keep practicing putting it together over the next week. There are some difficult parts right at the end that are not gelling for me. On the bright side maybe I can use this to work on my frustration tolerance. Had a bad weekend because of phenomenally poor choices on my part. I feel guilty and disgusted with myself. I don't know why I keep doing this. It's like I'm addicted to the drama, but I don't get any enjoyment out of it, just anxiety. I will need to do some more work to figure this out.

Ralph

Ralph

 

Goals experiment, check in 1

1 week into working on learning a full song to get my music practice started up again, and to experiment with setting and meeting goals. So far have the basic riffs for verse and chorus down, can play a couple of the fills and the bridge. Next week need to learn the rest of the fills. There's a part at the end which I really miss being able to play. I used to know every note of this song but I've had to relearn it. Mentally/emotionally things have been not good but not bad. Anxiety a big problem lately causing me to avoid and procrastinate. Starting to feel tired of self discipline. Extremely lonely and realizing this level of isolation is unsustainable. I'm handling it right now but I can tell it's a matter of time before I either find a way to feel like I belong somewhere or I decide I don't belong anywhere.

Ralph

Ralph

 

neutral

Past few days I have been too depressed to even write. Now getting better, for a while at least. Mainly using distraction but realizing I need to get caught up on self-help type of stuff. Haven't read CBT book in a while. Also reading a book on contemplative prayer and healing, so far really interesting. I think it's the Abilify but my mood has been in a very narrow range. Don't feel as depressed, but no interest in sex (which is highly unusual for me:o) and have to force myself to do much besides lay on the floor staring at ceiling. Starting to realize I cannot deny my way out of depression and I've got some real work to do. Want to try meeting a goal again. Still need to learn that one song, so I'll try again to get it under my belt w/in three weeks. That gives me to Feb 5. Wrote it in my new planner. I'm being all grown up and stuff. So why do I feel like I'm just lying to myself?

Ralph

Ralph

 

Deflated

Low energy, almost no motivation. Want to sleep but trouble falling asleep. Down to 1/3rd normal caffeine intake with no caffeine after 11AM. Exercising 3-5 hrs before bed and maintaining a routine. Still only seem to feel sleepy during the day more often than not. I miss sleep. Something in the back of my mind that I don't know how to deal with, so I bury it. So angry about things that happened in the past. Want to let go and have tried, but it keeps coming back. Don't like bitter, angry people but that is what I'm becoming. More thoughts of suicide that aren't intentional, escaping into comforting fantasy of not having to deal anymore. Extremely lonely, cried three times yesterday. Not enough energy to do anything about it though. At least pushing myself to do some things to take care of myself such as cooking normal food. Have motivation for that to get blood pressure down so I can have fewer panic attacks.

Ralph

Ralph

 

panic and lesson

I have all the answers but none of the skills. Thinking there is something to be learned from panic. Something is not right with the way I'm living my life to be so afraid of death but at the same time aversive to life. Mainly it's I am afraid of what my family would find if I did have a heart attack, and with my blood pressure where it is that is a real fear. There is also the feeling that I've wasted and am wasting the opportunities afforded me. Human beings are the result of millions of years of evolution and here I can't get over my past trauma. It only makes it worse though to live in fear throughout my life for many years after the abuse has stopped. So why do I keep doing it. Possibly never considered any other possibility, but OTOH it's an easy out. I don't have to expect anything of myself if I'm broken. At the same time being broken makes it difficult to take risks. When the prospect of failure reminds me of harshly violent events from the past that I have yet to make sense of, I tend to withdraw and restrict my activities. Unfortunately I've withdrawn so well that I hardly have a life at all, and don't really know who I am. I might be self aware, but not self knowing.

Ralph

Ralph

 

Emotional liability

my meds help with depression but seem to have given me high blood pressure and insomnia. Plus I've gained 10 lbs despite working my ass off in the gym. Not that I've been too careful with what I eat but honestly you try not eating half a box of cheeze-its when you've got the munchies from AAP induced high prolactin. Average weight gain is 30 lbs over six months so actually my work in the gym probably paid off. Anyway I think I'm ready to be done with this med nonsense. I was better off when I was smoking and drinking, at least then I could have fun and not worry about it. Now I drink a glass of wine and get heart thumping in my ears 48 hrs later, what a great time. If I am going to die of heart disease no matter what there is no point in me being a non smoker except that I really love running and don't want to be addicted to anything. Love hate relationship. So to get off drugs I have to start paying back the hurt that I've been pushing off. And that shit comes due with interest, hence it is a liability that I am building up every time I take something that gets me away from the pain. Starting to fray at the edges. Everything I try to do doesn't work, or it does work but backfires later. Well, maybe not everything but all the things I cared about or really thought would work. That's what low emotional intelligence combined with high analytical intelligence will get you. If amoral a sociopath and if moral then a tactless buffoon. Fuck I don't even know what I'm trying to say anymore. I'm frustrated and discouraged and not sure if I should even care. Can't think straight. Sorry for rambling.

Ralph

Ralph

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