My husband

I have mentioned in earlier posts that I am married. I thought I would do an entire post about my husband.

Dave and I met on a night out in a rock club in April 2004. At the time I was 19 and a few months off turning 20. Dave had not long turned 18. I was having an awful night. I was out with two couples and felt like the fifth wheel. I had gone off on my own and was sat down near the dance floor. Dave wasn’t exactly subtle as he was incredibly drunk (something I found out after we became a couple). I remember him looking over at me a number of times. He then sat down next to me and said, “what’s a girl like you doing sat on her own?” I still tease him about this but Dave likes to counter with that I actually fell for this line. He even mentioned it in his speech at our wedding. I found out when we dating that Dave and his friends were just about to leave the rock club but ‘Chop Suey’ by System of a Down came on just as they were by the exit. Dave loves this song and came back into the club. That was when he spotted me. 

I am not going to lie and say that Dave and I have always had a wonderful relationship. We have split up twice earlier on in our relationship. But after the second split we were both determined to make it work. I actually think the difficult times have made us stronger as a couple. 

Dave has come out of his shell a lot since meeting me. He was unbelievably quiet when we first met. Dave is incredibly laid back and this has had a positive influence on me. He is a calm, rational person and I couldn’t be more of the opposite. 

Dave and I share a love of rock and metal music, tv shows, films and gaming. We love nothing better then catching up on one of a variety of favourite tv shows (Breaking Bad, Sons of Anarchy, Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead to name but a few), watching a film or playing xbox together. 

I am so proud to call Dave my husband. He is considerate, kind, thoughtful and caring. I am so lucky to have someone who understands me and I can always be myself around. Dave keeps me going when my depression and anxiety are bad. He supports me 100% and is always encouraging. Dave makes me want to be the best person possible.

The reason I decided to do a blog about Dave is because I can only imagine how hard it is for him sometimes. As much as I don’t want it to, my depression and anxiety will have an impact on our relationship. But Dave still treats me the same. He will take the piss out of me if I am being a bitch or tell me how proud he is of me when I need encouragement. 

I am so grateful that my husband is also my best friend. He is the one person I can totally trust and talk to about anything. 

My story so far…

It would probably come as a shock to a lot of my friends that I have depression and anxiety. It was only after being told this in December by my GP that particular times of my life now make sense. 

Other people see me as outgoing, confident, self assured and sociable. But on and off since I was a teenager I have struggled to keep up this front. I was bullied in primary and secondary school. As a result, I was quiet and kept myself to myself, hating to be the centre of attention. 

When I started university I met like minded people who shared similar interests to me. I came out of my shell during university. It was like I found myself. I was training to be a primary teacher. My first year placement was amazing. The school were supportive and I really felt I was meant to be a teacher. My second year placement was awful. The school I ended up in was a last minute change. They clearly didn’t want me there. Luckily, a friend was also on placement there. We were told on our first day that we were not allowed to go in the staff room. I was miserable during the entire placement. A friend who was also on my course managed to convince me to stick the placement out. My final year placement was a complete nightmare. I had a child with behavioural problems in the class I was in. I had no experience of this. The class teacher was the SENCO. I asked her for help in how to deal with this child. I was spending hours every night planning and sorting my lessons only for this child to totally disrupt my lessons. I was told to get on with it. 

Looking back, I had a breakdown of sorts during this time. I would cry for hours on end, would hardly eat and had trouble sleeping. I ended up dropping teaching. 

After graduating from university, I continued working as a playleader for disabled children which I did throughout university, until I got a job as a teaching assistant in an autistic school. I ended up working there for 4 years. I got a great deal from this job. I then got a job for an outreach service offering advice for autistic children in mainstream schools. Initially, I loved this job. It was extremely rewarding and I developed even further professionally. I even did autism awareness training for 60 police officers after being recommended by a police officer at a high school I frequently went into. However, the team manager was not strong minded.  When a certain member of our team found out that myself and a colleague I done this training she went out of her way to undermine me – turning up to meetings when she hadn’t been invited, telling me last minute I would be delivering training to making comments about me in the office. I went into my manager’s office really upset. I was at breaking point. I got really upset and said that I felt that I was being bullied. She did nothing. I managed to get a doctors appointment for after work. Initially, I was signed off work with stress for two weeks. I ended up signed off work for 3 months with anxiety disorder, taking antidepressants and seeing a counsellor. 

I stayed in this job until August 2014. I started my new job in an independent autistic in September 2014. My friend told me about this job and as it was around 35 miles away from where I live she said I could stay at her house. I couldn’t wait to leave the job I was bullied in. I shouldn’t have taken it. It was extremely stressful and I was exhausted. I would regularly spend my Sundays in tears dreading the week ahead. 

On top of all this, my husband and I got married in October 2014! I think that wedding planning was a distraction from my fragile mental state. My husband and I had an amazing wedding day and minimoon. By November I was physically ill. I had a really bad chest infection, something I haven’t had since loosing all the weight. I was on antibiotics and steroids for weeks and was signed off work. I became really depressed. I didn’t leave the house for days at a time and even getting out of bed in the morning was a battle. At the beginning of December 2014 I broke down in front of my GP and told him everything. I was then diagnosed with moderate depression and anxiety. I made the decision after talking to my husband and family that I couldn’t go back to work. 

I am now in the process of recovering. I don’t know what the future holds for me and that scares me. Depression and anxiety have robbed me of any confidence and self belief I have. I feel like a failure as a person. I experience huge amounts of guilt for not working and for being like this. I feel like a burden and often have suicidal thoughts. I genuinely feel that my family and friends would be better off without me. I find it hard to see how I will recover from all of this. But I am really trying not to let depression and anxiety have such a control over my life. I feel that when I was signed off work in my old job I never got to the root of my issues. Hopefully, without the pressure of work I can get some clarity and perspective which will help my recovery. I am tired of being like this. I don’t want to feel sick at the thought of leaving my house. I want to be able to have a decent night’s sleep. I don’t want to feel the utter despair I feel pretty much all the time. 

I want to be the best I can possibly be. I won’t let depression and anxiety beat me.

Ups and downs

I know that the best thing for me to do is keep busy. It’s hard to want do things when my depression and anxiety have kicked in. I didn’t let depression or anxiety change my plans that my husband and I made at the weekend. There were times I was close to having a panic attack, completely on edge or crying my eyes out. 

On Saturday after the gym I waited round until everyone else had left so I could talk to my gym trainer friend. We had a really frank and open conversation about how I have been. It’s the first time I have ever talked so open about my depression and anxiety to anyone else beside my husband. 

I decided to message my friend later on and suggest meeting up. This is a big deal for me. My depression and anxiety would like nothing better then for me to sit in the house. To hide away from the world. My depression and anxiety tell me that I am worthless. Why would anyone want to spend time with me? Maybe it was all the endorphins running through my body that gave me the courage to do something I was scared of doing. I suggested to my friend about going starbucks or for lunch if she had enough free time. I went on to say that I am determined to recover and keeping busy will help. My friend replied that she was actually going to suggest doing something if I was up to it. Next Thursday we are going to go for lunch 🙂 I was waiting for my friend to ignore my message or not suggest a day so soon. Initially, she suggested meeting up over half term. But, when she realised it was a good few weeks away she suggested next Thursday. 

I saw my GP this afternoon. I was very honest about things – I struggle to sleep, everything is such an effort, I am extremely tearful etc. He is a really good GP and I feel I can be totally honest without being judged. He suggested changing my antidepressant. He said that after around 6 weeks of being on Mirtazapine I should have noticed a difference. He went on to say that I seemed the same as when I went to see him at the beginning of December, when I started back on Mirtazapine. I am going to be coming off Mirtazapine and starting Citalopram. My GP has warned me that my anxiety might increase while my body gets used to Citalopram. I am terrified. But I am hoping that Citalopram will have a positive impact on me in the long run. I also got my GP to look at my knees. My gym trainer friend looked at them and she thinks it is ligaments/muscles that support the knees need strengthening. She said to get my knees checked out to confirm this so then she can show some leg strengthening exercises. My GP agreed with my friend so on Thursday I am going to get the gym a bit earlier before classes start so that she can show me the exercises. 

A step in the right direction

For the first time in I don’t know how long, I have felt like the dark cloud that has been surrounding me has lifted some what. 

I was on the verge of tears when getting ready to go the gym last night. I hadn’t felt so anxious about leaving the house. I got in the car. I blasted Bullet for my Valentine. I drove to the gym. 

My friend who is a trainer at the gym asked me if my knees were still bothering me. I said that they were. There were other people around and I didn’t feel able to say anything else. I was worried about getting upset. I knew if I did I would have gone straight home. 

It was so good to feel my anxiety levels lower after doing BodyPump. I then did BodyAttack and this also helped. I didn’t feel self conscious. Exercising had finally distracted me again 🙂

I felt that I might have come across as rude to my friend at the gym. I messaged her, apologising if I seemed rude and explained that I am struggling a lot at the moment. She told me not to apologise, that she can see I have been struggling and understands that I need to be left alone sometimes. She reiterated that she is there for me when I need her. I expressed my worries that I bother her when she is busy. She then said that I don’t bother her and that she sees me as a friend that she is really glad to have made. 

I need to realise how lucky I am that I have such a nice friend. Part of me has seen my gym trainer as just that and not a friend. But the fact she tells me frequently that I am her friend is something I am grateful for. I think a part of me is scared to open up to her fully after what happened recently with so called friends. 

Today I went for lunch with my parents and sister. I had a nice time too. Part of me feels guilty for having a nice time. Like I don’t deserve to because I am not working. 

I feel more positive. The feeling of dread about this weekend isn’t there right now. I am looking forward to spending the weekend with my husband and some good friends. It would be stupid of me to think that my anxiety and depression has gone. I have a long road ahead of me. It’s just nice to have times where anxiety and depression don’t have such an impact me. 

Relaxing, respite and reading

My chill out day on Tuesday resulted in me in tears. I watched some films, read my kindle and tried to relax. I find it hard to relax. I am crying most days. I then find it hard to stop. I cried driving home from the gym yesterday. 

It’s made me think that I might need to increase my medication. I am currently taking 30mg of mirtazapine. Part of me is reluctant to increase the dosage. When I went from 15mg to 30mg I felt really dizzy, spaced out and tired. Maybe I need to consider a different medication. I am definitely going to discuss it with my GP on Monday.

Wednesdays always leave me exhausted. I go the gym in the morning and I do respite for a 12 year old boy with autism and ADHD for 3 hours when he gets home from school. I have been providing respite for this boy for 3 and a half years. He helps distract me but due to the nature of his autism and ADHD I am tired by the time I get home at around 7.30pm. He is a well behaved boy but he is full on. But, I can’t let him down. Every Wednesday he will always say, “I’ve been looking forward to seeing you”. This is such a big deal. Due to his autism he finds it difficult to express how he feels. He has made massive progress and I am so proud of him. I would rather be worn out and tired then to disappoint him by not taking him out. Plus he never fails to bring a smile to my face and to make me laugh. I have had to give up my main job as it was impacting on me in such a bad way. I feel ridiculous that I am essentially only working 3 hours a week.

Before I did respite yesterday I had my counselling assessment appointment. It went ok. If anything it highlighted how much I am struggling. I had to drive to a health centre around 5 miles away from my house. I am not familiar with the area and as such this just added to my anxiety levels. During my appointment I was asked a series of questions. I now have to wait for my first counselling appointment which will be near where I live. 

I was worn out after this appointment. I wanted to go home and sleep before doing respite. I worried that this would be detrimental so I went and got a drink in starbucks and read my kindle. This is a big deal for me. I don’t like being out on my own at the moment. I carry my kindle with me whenever I am out now. I’ve always loved reading and it is something that does help distract me if I am not too tired. 

I have a busy weekend ahead. We are going round to our friends house on Saturday. They have a little boy who is nearly 2 and he is my godson. On Sunday my husband and I are seeing two other friends. Part of me doesn’t want to go out at all. I don’t want any demands on me that socialising inevitably brings. I am still tired all the time. I have had a headache since last night. I am fed up of waking up exhausted. It’s frustrating that I feel so low constantly when I am trying so hard. 

The battle continues…

It is becoming increasingly more difficult for me to be in the gym. I always considered it a sanctuary of sorts so it really upsets me that it is now a source of anxiety. I hate how self conscious I feel. Most days that I go the gym the self conscious thoughts subside as a class goes on. They kept popping back into my head today.

I know that I put pressure on myself. My knees are still not back to normal so I am working out 4 days a week rather than my usual 6. I am hoping this will help my current mental state. I am struggling to fall asleep at night. Most mornings I wake up feeling tired. It’s like I haven’t had a proper night’s sleep. I suffer with night terrors and have done since I was a child. My husband has said I am having more night terrors. I am also talking and shouting in my sleep. I wonder if this is playing a part in my anxiety levels. I am seeing my GP next week so I am going to mention it to him. 

My mood comes crashing down after nice experiences. I then find it hard to get out of it. I feel guilty a lot of the time. I am forever apologising to my husband and he is forever telling me I have nothing to apologise for. I don’t understand why he puts up with all this shit from me. 

Sometimes I really want to talk to someone. But I don’t even know where to begin. I am too scared to fully open up to people for fear of pushing people away. I don’t trust anyone besides my husband. I will not make the mistake of opening up about how I feel. Look what happened when I did – I was talked about behind my back, made to feel guilty and then was on the receiving end of nasty comments. I don’t like to burden my husband. He works long hours and we don’t get much time together as a result. I also don’t want him to feel more helpless then he already does. 

Sorry for the randomness of this blog. It probably doesn’t make much sense. There I go again apologising 😛 Here’s hoping a chill out day tomorrow will help me feel less anxious. I refuse to let my anxiety and depression stop me going to the gym. It has too many benefits including making me feel that I am good at something. I don’t feel that I am good at anything these days. 

Feeling panicky

Is panicky even a word? Anyway, I am only typing this post in an attempt to distract myself. I am at the gym waiting for combat to start. My heart is beating as if I have exercised when I am sat down. My breathing is rapid and shallow. I don’t even know what is making me feel like this. I am contemplating going home and not bothering with the gym today. But I haven’t been out the house since Saturday. 

I really hope that someone comes into the studio that I know. It would be a welcome distraction. I also hope that the class isn’t busy. 

I feel like crying but I’m trying not to. I know if I cry I will just go home without doing any exercise today. I would phone someone but I am worried that will also make me cry. 

Challenge complete, selfies and narcissistic people

I completed the Fit 4 5ive challenge! I didn’t let my anxiety stop me doing it. I had terrible anxiety on Saturday, the day of the challenge. I had awful stomach pains and I felt really panicky. 

The first class, spin, was tough. Lots of squats and hill sprints. My legs were sore as soon as I got off my spin bike. The BodyAttack class was hard going but I managed to keep up. We had a small taster of the new tracks. Lots of jumps and burpees. The floor of the studio became slippy quite quickly which was annoying. My feet were sore towards the end of Attack but I think I tied the laces of my trainers too tight. Before pump I loosened the laces and this solved the problem. 

Next was pump. I was just glad to have a break from cardio at this point! I pushed through all the press ups, deadlifts, skull crushers etc. BodyCombat was next. This is my favourite class. I really enjoyed the new tracks. I am looking forward to going to Combat tonight. We didn’t do any of the kicking tracks during the challenge because there wouldn’t have been enough space so I should get to do them tonight. I feel I have made massive progress in this class as I have done boxing during personal training sessions. 

The finisher was brutal. We were given exercises to do for a minute – mountain climbers, borrower squats, plank etc. We then did some tabata. I am really glad that I have done this before during personal training. We did it with two different exercises – press ups and jump squats. The final part of the challenge was a BodyAttack track. This track had lots of tuck jumps and high knee runs but I gave my all right until the end.

I am so glad I did the challenge. It highlighted how far I have come. My fitness and stamina have improved massively. The gym put on free tea, coffee and cupcakes for all of us who took part when we had finished. This gave me the chance to talk to some people who I have seen at classes but only said hello in passing. 

Unfortunately, the Fit 4 5ive Challenge brought out the worst in some people. There is a group of about five people in the gym who are very cliquey. They get arsey with new people, they talk overly loud and I have found them increasingly annoying. They pick and choose when they speak to me. I now don’t really bother speaking to them. I find it so unnecessary to be so stand offish with people. Plus, I would hate it if I made other people feel so uncomfortable. 

We were allowed to go into the spin studio 10 minutes before the challenge started on Saturday. I used this time to get my spin bike set up correctly and mentally prepare for the challenge. The clique spent the time taking selfies. 

I put this to the back of my mind during spin. However, when we then went into the studio for the rest of the challenge it was hard to ignore the clique. Throughout the challenge they were taking more selfies in an overly loud manner. At least half a dozen times during the challenge they actually stopped to take photographs of everyone doing the challenge! I found this strange and to be honest it angered me. Not once during the challenge did I think, you know what, I am gonna stop what exercise I am doing and start taking photos. Why would you think other people want to see random people exercising?! The part that angered me was that I felt like an invasion of my privacy. I know the clique are on facebook and they would put these photos on there. Not once did they consider that any of us wanted to be photographed or be on facebook. 

In the weeks leading up the challenge the clique would speak in an overly loud manner about how they were going to go out for food and drinks after the challenge. I found it really rude. Not that I would want to socialise with these self obsessed individuals, but wouldn’t it have been nice of them to mention it to everyone else in the gym and invite them? Why talk about it in such a way that everyone in the gym studio can hear? Does it make them feel better about themselves or popular by doing this? How about just messaging each other privately instead of making others uncomfortable. 

I just hope that they haven’t put people off coming to classes or taking part in similar charity events in future. Other people could easily feel intimidated by people behaving like this. I try not to let them bother me but it is hard not to me when my anxiety is high or I am feeling quite low. 

The anxiety battle

Good old anxiety. I knew as soon as I woke up yesterday that I was going to have to try really hard to not let my anxiety win. I didn’t want to get out of bed when I woke up. I didn’t see much point. I was having to force myself to eat. I didn’t have an appetite but I know that given my active lifestyle I need to keep eating. I was in tears a lot yesterday. 

It is scary when you cannot pinpoint what it is exactly that is making you feel so scared and anxious or what triggers it. The severe anxiety can lead to frequently feeling suicidal. I sometimes find it hard to see the point in going on like this. It’s hard to see any way out of all this. I also think a lot of the time that my family and friends would be better off without me. I am just a burden, an inconvenience. 

I did go and get new trainers. I forced myself to go and felt on edge the entire time. I ended up going with these: 

My knees were sore again after my classes. I messaged my trainer last night about it. She thinks that it will take time for the sore knees to subside. She has said to rest more. I am having a rest day before the charity event tomorrow. Emotionally, I could also do with having a day that I don’t have to go out given my high anxiety levels. I am also going to have more rest days in between gym days to allow my knees recovery time. 

I couldn’t wait to get home after the gym last night. I still felt anxious after working out which is such a horrible feeling. My anxiety last night had me contemplating not taking part in the charity event tomorrow. However, as much as my anxiety is telling me not to bother, I would like to think that completing this challenge will be of more benefit to me then not doing it if that makes sense. I am hoping that I will have a confidence boost from it. I am worried about tomorrow. There will be 40 people taking part which is a lot given the space of the studio. I feel panicky if I don’t have what I deem enough personal space. 

Today my anxiety isn’t as bad as yesterday. I have more of an appetite and I am more relaxed. I find it hard at my lowest to see how things are going to improve and how I will ever feel better. It scares me how my mood can go from bad to worse. It is at an alarmingly fast rate and it just spirals out of control. 

Removing toxic people

 I came across this a few months ago. Ironic that this would apply to somebody I considered like a sister. But this sums up exactly why I had to remove my best friend from my life. 

I didn’t intend to discuss her ever again in my blog. This will definitely be the last time I bring her up again though. Even when told that I needed space at the moment she kept badgering my husband. I could understand if it was out of concern for me or our friendship. No. It was for her wedding. Literally 24 hours after my husband ignored her first message she messaged again about her wedding. 

I was anxious as hell anyway, but when I found out when I was just about to drive the gym it made me so angry. I was smacking my steering wheel and screaming when driving, something I am not proud to admit. Even when given a no holds barred account of my situation my supposed best friend didn’t understand the seriousness. 

I went the gym and was completely distracted by the whole thing. I decided that enough was enough. I sent her a message when I got home. It said the following:

“Please stop messaging myself and my husband. I am not well and I’m trying to get better and you are not helping at all. I find the things you said to be very hurtful and you have shown no understanding or care towards what I am dealing with. Instead you have just focused on yourself. I am not well enough to deal with any of this. I cannot be your friend let alone your bridesmaid as a result of the drama you have created. Myself, my husband, my Mum and sister won’t reply to any further messages you send.”

I took advice from my sister regarding what to say. I came back from the gym in tears. My sister is a really calm, reasonable person. I didn’t want to become hurtful and nasty just because my best friend had been that way towards me. I felt that my message was to the point. Plus no response equals no drama, which is something she clearly thrives on. 

There are some people that might think I am too harsh. I am now no longer friends with someone I have been good friends with for four and a half years. Yes she has helped me loads in the past and we had some amazing times together. But all of that doesn’t give her the right to throw it back in my face. A best friend shouldn’t have me hysterically crying or feeling guilty about steps I have taken to aid my recovery regardless of whether that involves her or not. 

I know I have made the right decision. I have felt like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders since sending the above message. My husband has been left alone. My parents phoned me last night and noticed I sounded more like myself. 

I won’t pretend that everything is great now that she is out of my life. I still have depression and anxiety. But I now feel able to deal with it. I am in control more. I have had quite a busy day today though and I think it is evident in my anxiety levels. I try hard to put on a front around others and it is draining. I am still struggling to fall asleep at night even when I am tired. It’s like my mind won’t switch off. I have finally received my counselling assessment appointment which is next week. I know this is a positive step forward but I am also filled with dread and apprehension when I think about it.

My paranoia is worse than normal at the moment. I feel overly self conscious in the gym. It’s horrible. However, I am trying really hard to not let it stop me going the gym. I am in need of new trainers for the gym. The ones I am wearing are about a year old and completely unsuitable to my workouts now. I have had sore knees at times and pain in the front of my right shin. I’m hoping that some new more suitable trainers will help lift my mood. I plan on heading out a bit early before my two classes tomorrow evening. That way I will have worn them in before my charity challenge on Saturday. 

I am going to get back to watching Rocky II. I am planning on watching as many of the Rocky films as I can as a sort of motivator for Saturday!