Anyway… (Updated)

Let’s not be downhearted.  I am okay- well, no that’s a lie.  I’m going through seismic changes, I guess, painful ones.  As is my life right now.  I know I am not alone, but I feel very alone, just because there are so many banshees in my head, and I’m so scared of the future, I don’t know who to talk about it to or how to talk about it.  I feel guilt very acutely, and I am struggling with it because I have hurt people that I love. I did talk to my CPN who thinks my rationale is sound but my behaviour is possibly not, and that I am probably going through a hypo/manic episode, with a vicious edge of depression.

On my restricted blog (yes, I have one that only friends can read), Crikey, I was being funny.  I have a Livejournal. Brain_opera if you’re interested.  It’s for day to day crap and my friends in London to sort social stuff out. I made a list of things I need to do.  They include:

  • Start eating properly.  I tallied up my daily calorie count as an average, and for three weeks, I’ve been averaging out at about 600 a day, sometimes slightly more, sometimes slightly less, sometimes nothing at all.  I am going to force myself to eat at least three things a day, even if they’re tiny.  This isn’t deliberate; mixture of stress, grief, depression, mania and exhaustion.  I have been on the verge of collapse quite a few times and my manic energy means that I need to be eating more, not less.
  • Sleep.  Because I haven’t been.
  • Keep the place tidy. Whoops.
  • Try not to start caning the booze.  I’ve been drinking but not an awful lot and I have stopped drinking home alone.
  • Stop dodging my CPN appointments.
  • Properly discuss therapy which I think I desperately need.  Problem with it is that I need to be more stable in order to engage.
  • Stop skipping medication doses.  Yep.  I’ve been afraid of going to sleep (hate sleeping alone, hate waking up alone) so sometimes have been skipping doses.

Basically; start small by trying to take care of myself a bit more.

I’m not around tomorrow and my sister is coming on Wednesday so I shall be quiet.  My friend Nick told me I should make a list of why people care about me, and what’s good about me, and in it maybe I’ll find the reasons to carry on.  I shall, but for now, my lovely readers, I pass the tasks onto you.  Tell me five good things about you.  If you please, and if you like, and if you don’t want to, then it’s okay!   Even if you’re just proud of the way you do something, tell me.

I’ll tell you two things I am proud of (I can only think of two right now, alas): I am proud of the Radio 4 play, even though I got rabbit in the headlights about it and had to run away for a little while because, although I was proud of it, it’s quite strange for even more people to know me for being manic depressive.  I’m also proud of the fact that, for the most part, I give people good and sincere advice.  So there you go!

 

EDIT:  Excuse the shouty bold, rather irritated.   Continue reading

It Pours

I had a post to write, but it’s been kind of blown out of the water by the news that my granny Kane has just died.  No, not even this granny, Granny Molloy, who is hanging on.  The other one, which was somewhat unexpected to me as I didn’t know the extent of how ill she was in hospital.

I wasn’t close to her, but I didn’t dislike her.  I was far closer to my Granda Kane, her husband, who died last year.   And aside from my uncle Brian, I despise everybody in my mum’s family because they are poisonous, manipulative, loathsome human beings.

I’m still saddened by her death because it feels like my family is being wiped out.  And so last Christmas was, well, the last, and will end a tradition of a lifetime.

Mostly, however, I’m just worried about my mum.  She’s not really well (mentally) and has been looking after my granny almost since my dad died.   I worry that this might be a catalyst for madness, and I don’t want to lose her.  On the other hand, I’m hoping it gets her away from her ridiculous siblings and she begins, maybe, to live her own life. 

I’m not going to be able to attend the funeral due to my current benefits-what? situation, and also that one of my best friend’s weddings is on Saturday and I have already shelled out for train tickets, so I’m too broke.  I feel guilty about it (she deserves to have her grandchildren there, and I want to be there for my mum), but also slightly relieved, as I’m exhausted by funerals, exhausted by death.  I have watched too many people go into the ground in the past few years.  It isn’t how I want to remember them.

My granny wanted to go, though, and did so in her sleep.  She has been heartbroken since granda died.  They really loved each other.  So I am happy, in one sense, that she’s no longer in pain.

There goes the plateau of calm and peace I had reached today, anyway. Ah, what a sodding mess my life is right now.  Alas.

Regrouping.

The Spiky Sea Urchin has been trying to claim me.

“The old brag of my heart- I am, I am, I am”.

Okay.  After a good ten days of my activities mostly consisting of thinking of inventive ways in which I can hang myself (“Do you have a plan?” Oh yes.), chainsmoking, wanting to throw myself out of a window because of guilt and grief and crying, it’s time to regroup.

I haven’t been answering any correspondence and am seriously behind in…everything.  Many thanks for people who’ve written to me but coherant thought has not been forthcoming.  I have been really ill for a while, waaaaaaaaay more than I have let on, and it’s coming to a head.  The abortion, which was a decision I had to make because of this stupid fucking illness that I didn’t ask for, kicked me over the edge. I’m off to be gently chastised by my CPN (and strongly suspect that it shall be suggested that I’ve been suffering from dysphoric mania, because I have) later in the first appointment in a month that I’ve not ingeniously dodged.

It’s funny, that the more I rebel against my illness and my treatment, the worse my illness gets, thus entrenching me even further in the role of Seriously Mentally Ill Woman, a role I have been desperate to shake off, hoping that if I did, then it would all disappear, and I wouldn’t disintegrate with the despair of another 12, 20, 40 years having to live with this horrendous life-ruining, beauty-destroying “bipolar disorder, y’know, the artist’s one, the one it’s cool to have,  the one that’s killed people, and is killing me and that means nobody trusts a word I say and some are afraid of me or disgusted by me or just gets plain hurt by me.  That one”.   I have been trying desperately to escape it.

I’ll write about it all later.  I need to come back to life.  That’s what all the changes have been for, but christ, it’s so difficult when life has been hurling shit at me endlessly, and I lost the will to live and the ability to.  I am going to live, I am going to make my life better and not make anyone else’s worse anymore.  I will not let this illness destroy something beautiful and break my heart ever again because I’m going to fucking deal with it, proper.  First stop: oh ye gads, I’m asking for therapy.  Me and therapy weren’t friends, but let’s try again.

I’m not thinking really straight at the moment.  I’m going on gut instincts, which may mislead me, but I am trying, very hard.

BUT!  I have been keeping myself busy, social and also a bit drunk, so have not slid into despair.  And I am very aware of how fortunate I am, have been, to be loved.

Oh, and my benefits still aren’t sorted.  I was preparing myself to go and sit in the housing benefit office for an hour today, then I coughed so violently I vomited over myself.  Maybe I should turn up like this, and point to my greening top and say, “You make me sick”.  Har.

Apologies

Going through horrendously painful and difficult emotional time right now.  Back soon.

Oh for god’s sake.

I shouldn’t be weighing myself (I was keeping the scales for my friend, I forgot to give them to her), but I have, and I’ve now dropped below the 8 stone mark, the lightest I have been in my adult life.  Despite being my little eating disordered self, I am not jumping for joy.  This is not deliberate; I have completely and utterly lost my appetite due to immense emotional stress over the past few months which have forced me to rethink my life.  The last thing I ate was at 11am yesterday.  

My friend Sarah came around bearing bread, which I’ll get around to eating when food feels more appetising than the cat’s litter tray.  Although I tried to entertain her by making my belly talk to her.  WHAT DOES IT SAY?  “Hello…Sarah…”

edit!  Sarah’s bread is bloody delicious!  I am eating it all!

Last week I almost fainted from lack of food and had to be physically steadied.  I need to get a grip and force myself to eat.  I have yet to get to bed.  I couldn’t face my bed, the pillows. Because if I sleep, then I have to wake up. I’ve spent the past seven hours crying on and off as four years of my life hurtle towards me in equal amounts of joy and agony, that I am losing, and although I am trying to do what I know in my gut is best, healthiest, happiest for everyone in the long term, to not lose everything, in the short term, in the now, I feel profoundly alone, stockpiling all my affections to try and get rid of that horrible feeling, and full of rage and grief and sadness and self abasement for not being strong enough, good enough as a person, trying hard enough, for letting people down and wishing so very violently that things had been different, with less endless crap to wade through,  so that the purest thing of all wasn’t stifled and changed, so I was less restless, disconnected, and knowing that I could keep trying, but it wouldn’t work, and I would always end up back in the same place, with the same grief which would hurt more and more, still 23, still with no clue who she’s meant to be (and now I am crying again).  

My head is killing me and feels gigantic and swollen.  I’ll lie down soon.  I want a bath, want to clean my flat, want to feel semi-human again.  I had a dental appointment at 11am that I can’t be bothered to go to.  I’ll get back to looking after myself properly.  I’m a big girl, I can do it.  I can stand on my own two feet but sometimes like everyone else I stumble to the ground and it is hard to get up.  I do look like a lady of the sorrows right now with my cried out skin and bombed eyes.

I’m not mentally unwell at the moment, not more so than usual.  People have been questioning whether I might be slightly manic due to my lack of sleep and lack of eating.  I don’t think I am. It is pure stress.  I am a bit more impulsive than usual but this is a culmination of, everything, to be honest, and kind of losing my rag a bit and knowing that I need to shake myself out of a coma before I become a dead dear at twenty five just staring, paralysed.   I’m not depressed.  I am incredibly, incredibly sad in a human way (nothing I want to discuss).  

I will feel better, just not right now.  Instead of doing my usual dusting myself off in that English way I have being an Irish person in England, I’m just allowing myself to bawl.

Ah, sweet self pity, eh.  I’d like to thump myself on the head.

Anyway, enough ranting.  

I am also stressed beyond belief.  My DLA didn’t go into my account- I am on zero benefits.  I have no money.  I went to sort out Income Support yesterday but everything else has been messed up.  It feels like nothing I’m doing in my life, in all respects, has an iota of positive impact.  That I make people miserable and even the benefits office seem to have some sort of vendetta against me and are determined to see me scavenge in the bins of the slightly better off than the underclass like me, which, at times like this, is exactly what I feel like. Right now jumping off something high seems attractive because I’m so sick of it all.  I could jump and wrap a letter from the DWP around my neck like an attractive bib with the word, “THANKS” scrawled on it.

Now I have to wait for the fuckers to open their phone lines.  At least the DLA people are somewhat more helpful than Income Support as they seem accostumed to old dears rather than rambling young whippersnappers like me.

Yes, Radio 4 listeners.  FEEL THE TEDIUM OF MY LIFE!

Absent friends, here’s to them

Excuse my status as an absentee blogger- I wasn’t in London for most of last week, and to be honest, I’ve had little to say for myself, other than I’m thinking about learning how to use a crossbow so that I can personally acquaint myself with the staff of the DWP.  Emotionally, I’m going through a bit of a difficult time right now, and it’s nothing I find particularly easy to share. 

What I have wanted to say, though, while trying to avoid being sentimental or corny, is thank you to everyone who has emailed, commented and found me on Facebook to say lovely things about the play and to share with me their own stories.  I have been totally overwhelmed by the response.  The night before it was broadcast I couldn’t even sleep due to the dread that I’d be sought out and headbutted by the irate listeners of Radio 4.  So thank you for proving me wrong on that count.  I have thrown out my special helmet. 

Please be patient with me when it comes to responding; I have a few hundred e-mails to get round to at the moment.  I’m rubbish at the best of times with e-mails due to my appalling lack of organisational skills and my equally appalling memory.

When I live my dream, please be there to meet me, let me be the one to understand.

Three years ago today, this happened.   Continue reading

Rant

Benefits rant, excuse me.

Continue reading

Mind Campaign- Get it Off Your Chest

MEN!  What do you think of this?  There have been many similar campaigns that have been largely ineffective, so I wonder if this one will have any impact.

In other news, don’t breed.

Edit: Don’t want to write a new entry; just to say I am very behind in my e-mails so give me a couple of  days to reply.

Tonight I’m going to party like it’s 2006

(There are lots of new people reading.  It’s a bit weird for me so excuse my strange tone).

I had my housewarming yesterday, which would have been more fun if I hadn’t thought a few drinks wouldn’t hurt, y’know, it is my housewarming, after all, and I was nervous nobody would show up.  I ended up getting completely drunk and then downed tequila, which, like absinthe, is one of those drinks that makes me go mad.  I woke up this morning and wasn’t at all surprised to see a series of cuts on my left arm.  It’s been over a year since I self harmed.  Only one of them is deep but I still feel horribly disappointed in myself.  That’s my general consensus right now.   I feel like I’ve stopped making progress and that I’m peddling backwards.  I keep missing my appointments and I wouldn’t be surprised if I was discharged from the community mental health team because of it.  An entire hour of sitting  talking about it feels difficult.  I stare at the clock and can’t wait to get out of there.   There’s never anything new to say.

Edit: I should clarify here.  I’m a LOT better than I was- it’s just that things have happened recently that have sent me into a mental tailspin, hence my boozing, cutting, etc- stuff I didn’t do until lately.  I will get over it, it just annoys me that I’ve reacted this way.

I’ll consider my housewarming my last hurrah in terms of that and try very hard not to get bogged down in my little drunken pit of self loathing, wondering what embarrassing things I said and did and just how much people hate me for it.  I don’t really know why I do this to myself when I know how badly alcohol affects me.  Especially given the medication I take, which means I become drunk and lose awareness really quickly.  I guess I haven’t been coping with recent events that well.  But you knew that. 

I’m still stressed out, although my skin is returning to its normal, less terrifyingly zombie-esque colour.  Islington council are still underpaying my housing benefit, despite me giving them all the documentation they need.  I.  I’m going to end up ambling down there with a bag of clothes and chucking everything I own at them.  I’m not sure dirty pants are good as payment but it’s worth a go.

In short, the summer is so far shaping up to be like all the other summers.   I need to keep an eye on myself, I think.  And stop messing around with pills and my CPN.  Sorry for the boring post!  Minor miracle I’m awake enough to write it; if I miss doses of Seroquel, as soon as I start taking it again it’s like how it was when I first started taking it.  Fifteen hours sleep a day and struggling to lift my head in my waking hours.  I’m trying to summon the motivation to get out of the house and cycle and do other active things but bloody hell, it’s tricky.  

If I lower my doses of Seroquel, even by 100mg, in order to be awake and aware, I become hypomanic, in the extremely twitchy, panicked, paranoid way (see: last week).  But on my ordinary dose, sometimes I can barely get myself out of bed, and I strongly suspect that my medication may be making depression worse, because sleeping too much will do that to you.  I set four different alarms every morning, and they don’t often work.  When I do wake up, for an hour or two I’m really happy.  I’m so dozey and drugged that the world around me feels like cotton wool.  If I navigate myself to my appointments like that, I almost get knocked over and killed about five times but I sit in my little blue chair giggling and rambling.  

We have adjusted the doses countless times, and there doesn’t seem to be much of a happy medium.  Bugger.

I have Stuff to Do, so need to be functioning. I have to go out and find a pair of stepladders to fix my bathroom light.  At the moment, there’s only one very dim bulb burning above the toilet.  Every time I go to the bathroom, I feel like I’ve stumbled into a film noir.  “Bonjour, est-ce que tu m’aime?” he says.  Smoke curls around his mouth.  “Ah, oui, oui,” says she, raising one gloved hand to her beret.  “Mon amour est pour toujours…”

And relax.

Right, now I need to sleep for the next few days!  I’ve been barely sleeping through this exhausting week because I had been sneakily not taking my medication to get myself through it.  As usual, my body’s decided to strike me with The Plague to remind me so I’ll be under a duvet- emerging only to graze upon cornflakes-until the exotic shade of purple on my legs subsides.  (And for my flatwarming, which I’ll sleepwalk through).

Thank you to everyone who listened and took the time to comment, email and cajole yesterday.  I’ll  be able to respond when I’ve had a bit of rest.  Sorry for being rubbish!

In the meantime, have a lovely weekend! Here’s something for you- and how I wish I could walk into a room and find these people in it…  Even though Peter Cook just stands there and is still somehow funnier than anybody else.

And I love Stephen Fry for many things, but for this most of all, I think.

Lucky old heaven, indeed. 

Oh, and I want to headbutt everyone at Islington council.

“Dos and Don’ts For the Mentally Interesting”… on today at 2.15pm on Radio 4

Edit:  Hello Radio 4 listeners!

Anyhow, I was just unsubtly reminding you that the play is on this afternoon, at 2.15pm on Radio 4.  You can listen online, or catch up on BBC iPlayer.  I do think iPlayer can be accessed outside the UK.

(Listen again: here is a handy link)

It was Radio Choice in the Guardian today, and the Times, so that’s nice!  Although the Times review was strangely morbid…

Afternoon Play Radio 4, 2.15pm Seaneen Molloy describes herself on her sumptuously appointed MySpace page as “a tiny Irish writer” (she’s 4ft 9in). Since 2007 she has also written a blog called The Secret Life of a Manic Depressive, parts of which have been adapted for Louise Ramsden’s play Do’s and Don’ts for the Mentally Interesting. “You’ll laugh, you’ll cry,” Molloy (played by Séainín Brennan) writes in her first entry. “If you’re bipolar, you’ll probably do both at the same time.” And, yes, you laugh ? because when Molloy is up she can be very funny ? and you’re spared the really dark bits because when she is deeply depressed she can’t bring herself to write at all, she’s too busy trying to stop herself killing herself.

Just for the sake of journalistic integrity: I’m 4ft 11″, I gained two inches, which are very important as it means I’m nearly 5ft”, which is almost the size of a real person.

I’ll be listening with you (and my family), and will update this entry afterwards to say hello to people who’ve drifted across!  I hope people like it and find it helpful/hopeful/funny/deplorable/erotic etc…

You can read this if you like– it’s about the play and contains some background information that explains some things and puts others into context.  The Posts I Want You To Read page is also a good place to waste an hour…

Edit- slightly embarrassing emotional blathering and thanks…

 Bloody hell, this is surreal!  It’s a parallel universe version of me and Rob!  I’m listening to it via my Sky box and Lou and I have our names on the screen.  Some of it is quite painful, so, yeah, it has been a bit difficult at points.   Parts about our dad made me tearful, but I’m glad he’s in there, that people know he existed.  I’d been texting my big sister Paula the whole way through who was reassuring me, as well as laughing at me and Rob.

My mum rang me in tears saying she was proud of me and now I’m all weepy.  I think I’ve made my mum cry about three times in my life.  She’s been in Belfast all this time and hasn’t even known some of what went on.  So that’s what has made me a bit, well, weepy.  I was partly dreading it because I couldn’t quite bring myself to listen to it in its entirety before, because it’s close enough to reality to be upsetting, so it was somewhat emotional hearing it properly.

Many many thanks to Louise Ramsden.  She is a brilliant writer, so thanks to her for being so completely respectful, supportive and genuinely being totally ace.   It is her play.  Also a billion thanks to Fiona Kelcher, the producer, who wanted to do the play in the first place and whose sensitive handling of the issue was the reason that I agreed to it. She has also been fantastic and lovely and so have  the cast, especially Seainin- right, will stop the speech now.  But we got a shite AND a bollocks on Radio 4 after the Archers! Hurrah!

Obviously some people won’t like it which is okay, but I hope some find this helpful and that they identify with it, and that they find it in some way hopeful.  And that it does help get the idea out there that people with mental illness are just people, and that the experience of living with it is a human one.  And thank you for listening.  (And thank you to the people who read and comment, too).

Anyway, blathering over!

One more thing- my psychiatrist knows that this play has been broadcast.  I anticipate a little something extra in my next prescription.

Note to Self

Edit:  This was a very embarrassing post to write so don’t take the piss or else I’ll get drunk and kick your door down and steal all your pens.

Right, my little rebellious streak needs to be nipped in the bud. Like many other people I have been drinking a lot to cope with recent trauma.   Not even socially, I’ve been buying beers and drinking them at home to “unwind”, mistaking myself for a normal person who didn’t have a past history of alcohol abuse and who doesn’t have manic depression and who isn’t taking antipsychotic medication.  I am coping, I am getting through the day, but I haven’t just sprung back from it totally unaffected. I’ve been depressed, incredibly sad, self doubting and generally dragging my arse around like a scolded dog.

 I’m not happy at all right now,  and I have just wanted to forget.  I know it’ll pass and that I need to just deal with it and for it to be okay for me to be sad, but I’ve been using alcohol to make it pass quicker.  I’m very aware that I’m  that I’m acting a bit out of the ordinary.  I’ve been doing and saying crap I regret and I’m just seriously not myself at all right now. I’ve been closer to cutting myself lately than I have been for over a year.  If I had the choice I think I’d just curl up on Rob’s knee and sleep for a month.  

I was so proud of myself for quitting booze last year and I feel like I’m undoing my hard work.  What’s worrying me more is that it’s taking increasingly less alcohol to blast my memory, and I keep forgetting what I said and did, which leads me into the ever beckoning shame spiral.  I went up to my neighbour’s last night and have no clue what the hell I was on about, and today feel like a prick because of it and want to bash my head against something.  I feel so embarrassed and it makes me hate myself.  I shouldn’t drink because I regret it, every single time.  I talk utter bollocks.  I need to be in control of myself because it takes very little for me to lose it.  When I drink I feel like I’m letting down all the people who cheered for me when I stopped drinking.   Continue reading

Please assist me in my egomania

Hello lovely readers, why, you’re looking smashing today!  Is that a new blouse?  Your eyes are sparkling!  Are you taking a new antipsychotic? It suits you!

Can you do me a favour?  I completely forgot to buy the Radio Times and all the Sunday papers with the radio listings in them.  Could any of you who bought them (The Observer et al) pretty please take a photo/scan/post any mentions of the radio play to me?  I’d like to keep them for posterity, since the chances are I shall never be the subject of a play on my beloved Radio 4 again (unless I fulfil my life’s ambition and become a sniper).  As it stands, I have nothing!

It’s one of the Stages radio choices for this week, which is lovely.  Anybody enjoying it really reflects on Louise rather than me, but it’s still nice!

Many thanks and sexy winks to anybody who can help me.

I’m going to finally listen to it tonight.

Also many apologies for these kinds of posts- I do have something vaguely worthwhile to post but I also have racing thoughts so need an icepick in order to pin down a thought…

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