This was the key to my recovery, it really was. Most people expect to go to a therapist, have a magic wand waved at them and be cured. Unfortunately this doesn’t happen.
Think of it like this. It’s a really hot day. You don’t have a car but you want to go to the beach to cool down by swimming in the sea. A friend offers to take you. They come pick you up and drive you there. They walk with you to the beach itself. At this point you have been taken to the place you want to be, its up to you to get in the sea and start swimming.
So, the therapist will help find the root cause of your illness, find the underlying problem (your friend has the car you need). They will give you all the tools you need to get you to the place you need to get to where you want to be. They will give you coping strategies to alleviate anxiety and depression (the car). They will get you to the point you need to be at (the beach). The rest is up to you, use all of the tools you have been given to get yourself into the sea…..you anxiety relieved depression free (hopefully) life .
For me it was the hypnotherapy that worked. That journey back into my childhood to understand what happened to me to make the way I am. Going back and reassuring myself as a child that everything is okay. I will be okay. I am okay.
You really have got to put in all of the hard work yourself. Learn what your triggers are and how to work your mind through any situation. It really can be done.
Medication has played a major part in most of my adult life. I have been on every possible anti depressant you can think of. I have depended on them to keep me calm, lift my mood and “fix” me. They have both helped and hindered me massively. You will remember from an earlier blog the nightmare time I had while on sertraline. I thought I was going mad. I had days where I couldn’t leave my bed let alone my flat.
I remember being at a big awards ceremony in Leeds last year. I thought I had beta blockers with me. They were my go to wonder pill in any anxious situation. The very moment I realised I didn’t I started to get anxious. The anxiety led to a full blown panic attack. One of the worst I have ever experienced. I was so fixated on the fact that I didn’t have my medication, I couldn’t calm myself down. I couldn’t use any of the techniques I knew at the time. I was relying on this magic tablet instead of focusing on myself. Calming myself down.
Meds got me to a point where I was calm enough to concentrate so the therapy would sink in. They got me to a place where I could put all of the techniques I had been taught into place. The meds are a bit like stabilisers on a push bike. They give you the comfort that you are not going to fall off. They teach you how to ride a bike, but as long as the stabilisers are there you cannot put everything you have learned into practice. There comes a time when you need to take them off and trust yourself.
I’m currently not on any regular medication. Working with my doctor, we have agreed it is time to try to go medication free. I still have diazepam on standby and well as over the counter rescue remedy. I am not saying this is permanent, however right now I feel amazing. It is so nice to actually be able to feel everything again. To be me.
I will always be this slightly crazy unique individual labelled with borderline personality disorder, but hopefully I am now in full control 😉