Monday, March 4, 2013

Coping with Suicide: I'm Not Well

I've been avoiding going to the doctor's for years.
Each time I go, I'm told that my symptoms are in my head, either directly or implicitly.

They've been right. I've not wanted to hear it and they've not offered the support that I needed.
Oh, sure, it's not a GP's job to counsel. It is, however, their job to refer.

This Friday, I gritted my teeth and went to a GP recommended by the great people at Pregnancy Assistance and by Sr Bernadette MG. Mum's been wanting me to have a 'once over' 'full check-up' for a while now, and my counselor (well, my previous counselor) suggested I go to the GP and specifically mention that I was exhibiting some of the signs of depression. So much for getting back to normal.

Anyway, so I went. Not without trepidation. Turns out I was late. Very late. She saw me anyway, and for an extended period of time. She didn't push me out the door and she recognised that, although it was all in my head, that didn't (doesn't!) mean that it can't be treated.

Sure, she put me on anti-depressants straight away; they aren't what they used to be. I won't be on them forever, and they're a low, therapeutic dose. She's also writing me a referral to go and talk to a psychiatrist. Hopefully the psychiatrist will give me a diagnosis and allow me to talk. I find myself wanting to do that a lot. To talk. But I want to talk to someone who will get it or, at least, someone who won't fob me off part way through. "There is not limit," Glenn Morrison tells me, "to the number of times we need to tell our story," and I want to tell mine again. Or, rather, I want to tell it all out in full.

In the mean time, my prayer-life has been sucky and I was feeling bad about that, but realised that it's not my fault. Then, this morning, I watched There Be Dragons and, this evening, read some reflections of the Stations of the Cross. From each of these sources, there is something that I wish to record here:

From There Be Dragons:
"...I came to accept that [God] can be terrible... I fight Him with Love."
And from the reflections of the Stations:
"In a painful illness, it may be (no, it IS) more pleasing to Him to take with gratitude the remedy or relief offered rather than bear the pain with a bad grace. It is quite possible that when depression weighs down upon one, the right course is to shake it off by curtailing one’s penitential acts and one’s prayer and allowing oneself more time for lawful recreation." (Rev Robert Nash, S.J x)
Both of these have been some kind of minor relief.

I told Tyson the other day that my difficulty in not reacting on an almost entirely cognitive level is disrupting my relationship with God, while at the same time saving it. I've been trying to put together an entire post on this thought but haven't got far. I will post what I have so far underneath. It is by no means complete, but I'm not sure I'm in a fit state to be finishing it at the moment.

Mental illness is strange. It can be just as debilitating as a physical illness but it is so easy to forget that it's there. It's easy for friends and acquaintances to forget, assuming they know; it's easy for family to forget; it's easy for the person who's unwell to forget.

It's easy for me to forget what it's like to be well. I don't remember, but I've not yet entirely forgotten. Being mentally well is not a memory that I hold; however, I'm sure that it exists and that I'll remember when I am again.

I am relying on prayers right now. There is so much more still ahead of me, so much more still to come. Yet, though I walk in this vale of darkness, no evil will I fear.  Pray for me, and I will, as I can, pray for you too.


Post a Comment