Happy National Dog Day

It was brought to my attention via blogs I follow that today is National Dog Day. My dachshund Walter has helped me so much. He is such a loving, friendly and playful dog. 

   
    
    
    
    
 
I love any excuse to show Walter off. We are very lucky to have him. Happy National Dog Day Walter!!!

Meh

So since Saturday my mood has been up and down. On Sunday night I ended up lying on my couch in the fetal position with my hoody over my face. I didn’t want to do anything. 

I am in one of those moods where I can’t be bothered with anything. I need to take Walter for his walk and I said I would go bowling with Emma, my mum, brother and sister. I just want to lie on the couch. I have felt on the verge of tears all day. 

I don’t know what else to say. What a pointless post….

Family

Even though I am having such an amazing time right now, it has also highlighted how my anxiety and depression impact me so much. 

I experienced a lot of guilt when it sunk in that Emma was here. She has come over specifically to see me; knowing that I have been struggling. I feel guilty that Emma has travelled across the world for me. Why would anyone want to do something so huge for me?

Yesterday we met up with Dave’s parents, sister, brother in law and niece for lunch. I have never felt close to them. I didn’t want to go as I didn’t want to have to deal with the awkwardness. But Emma needed to see them while she is here. 

I might as well not have bothered going. When I did try to talk, I was conpletely ignored. There was a weird atmosphere when we arrived. I couldn’t wait to leave. I got really upset when we got back in my car. Dave’s mum had the cheek to say to Dave that they ‘know something is wrong’ and they are worried. This made me really angry. Surely if you were worried you would actually respond when I spoke or even have the decency to ask how I am? 

I find it strange that I feel closer to family that live tens of thousands of miles away. Dave’s immediate family do not know about my anxiety or depression. I don’t feel comfortable talking to them about it all. 

Emma being here has made me realise how close I am to my parents and siblings. We have spent loads of time with them this past week and it has been great. Loads of laughs and smiles. 

Happy Birthday to me

Yesterday I turned 30. I had a lovely day. We went out for breakfast which was delicious. My pandora bracelet is now full as I got more charms. Dave, Emma and I took Walter to the park near my parents house. We saw a woman with two dachshunds. Walter got on really well with one of them in particular. He was around the same age as Walter too. 

We went for Mexican in the evening with my brother and sister. This was a disappointing meal – service was slow, food was cold. It is somewhere Dave and I have been to loads since we have been together. I ended up with £40 worth of vouchers to use again at the restaurant. 

Normally I would have let something like this really get to me. I was able to move on from it pretty quickly. 

My mum made me a Maltesers birthday cake. It was amazing:

  
We are going to have a day in chilling watching films today with my siblings in ours. Tonight my parents are coming over and we are all going out to a really nice place here for food. 

Like a breath of fresh air

I feel like I am on holiday right now. Having Emma here is just what I need. We get on so well and we have such a laugh. 

We have done so much these past three days including getting this tattoo on my right foot:

  
It’s not the best photo but I really do love it. Emma got a small black semicolon on her left wrist. We had both talked about getting a semicolon tattoo. I wanted something a bit different then just a semicolon. I was originally going to get Keep Going instead of Keep Moving. The arrow represents going forward and I liked the idea of having something to remind me to Keep Moving Forward with my recovery. It is well known on here that I really struggle to keep going when I am in a particularly bad place. I tend to ruminate and over analyse things. It was quite painful at times. Particularly when he was nearer to my toes and my ankle. I now have six tattoos. 

You couldn’t make this day up…

Today had been totally unexpected in an amazing way. 

We went to out last puppy class and Walter was amazing. He was so sociable. I have a video of him playing with another puppy that I will get round to uploading. 

We went over to my parents later on this afternoon. My family said they had to go out as they had a surprise for me. My brother and Mum went out and came back a bit later on…with Dave’s cousin Emma who had come all the way from Australia!!! Dave and I were speechless. So much so that I welled up and was very close to crying. It turns out that back in March, Emma had bought her flight tickets. She managed to keep it a surprise all this time. 

I was convinced that the surprise was going to be something along the lines of a cake being taken to the restaurant. I never in my wildest dreams pictured Emma walking through my parents living room door with a huge bag of presents and a chocolate muffin from Greggs!

We all went for an amazing Chinese this evening. I haven’t laughed so much probably since I was out in Australia. 

I was dreading my birthday later this week. I now have three weeks with Emma to look forward to. It still doesn’t seem real that she is here. It is going to be an unforgettable 30th birthday. 

As you can imagine I am exhausted now so I am going to try and get some much needed sleep. 

No end in sight

Dave and I had a much needed quiet weekend. I even managed to get 10 hours sleep on Saturday which is unheard of. I’m now back to being sleep deprived. 

The friend situation is still getting to me. One of my friends has yet to respond to a message I sent her nearly a week ago. She promised Dom that she would see him during the summer holidays. Dom has asked frequently when we would see her. I messaged this friend last night asking which week would be best for her to meet up. 

The most frustrating thing is the message has been delivered but not read even though she has been online on Whatsapp since. I am so pissed off for Dom in all honesty. Don’t make a promise to a young man with autism if you are not going to keep it. If I have inadvertently annoyed this friend it’s not fair to make Dom upset in the process. 

I broke down on Sunday night. I told Dave that I feel that I have no friends. During my recent CBT sessions it has been highlighted that doing things with others will help my recovery. It’s hard to do this when you feel so alone and that you’re not worthy of people’s time. Even typing about this has me in tears. All this just adds to my low self worth. I don’t know what to do. I have emailed a local depression support group and they haven’t got back in touch. 

I put myself out there and worry about others; a lot of the time putting my own mental health at risk. I feel that none of my friends even care about me. I’m sick of being the one to message them first, being that one to offload their problems on without any concern for how things are with me. 

I am dreading my birthday next week. It’s just gonna highlight how much things have changed and not for the good. I don’t feel there is anything to celebrate. 

To add to this, it’s our niece’s 2nd birthday right after mine. We’ve been invited to the zoo for the day. The thought of it is too much for me. I really struggle with busy places. A zoo on a Saturday in August is my idea of hell. I have felt incredibly anxious about the whole thing. I’m conscious that I have a busy week next week and I am concerned that I will be pushing myself too much with the zoo. Dave has seen how much it is bothering me. He has said that it is not worth going as it might spoil my birthday. 

I don’t want to go to the Halestorm gig on Monday. I can’t bring myself to tell Dave. I just want to shut myself away from the world. But a part of me knows that this isn’t going to help my recovery. 

I’m in the why should I bother mindset. I am trying so hard and it just feels like too many obstacles are in my way. It’s clear that I am not important to the vast majority of people. 

I am sick of anxiety. The constant dread about leaving the house, being around people, the fear I will make a fool of myself and putting on a mask so no one sees that I am crumbling inside. 

I am sick of depression. The never ending voice telling me how worthless I am, that no one cares, that makes even simple tasks seem impossible. 

I want it all to end. 

Isolation

Depression isn’t rational in the slightest.  I am chilling with Walter and my mood has dipped dramatically yet again. I managed to do the dishes and wipe down the kitchen earlier. This is not a big deal to most people. But I have little motivation to do housework the majority of the time. It’s something that has been quite apparent since my breakdown in December. I then feel guilty that the house is a mess. Especially as Dave works long hours. Walter was great on his walk this afternoon. We saw six dogs when we were out. Initially Walter was unsure about them but he did end up curious about the other dogs. 

So why do I feel so low? I don’t even know what to do about it. I have looked at my list of things to do when I am struggling and I have no inclination to do any of them. 

I am concerned that I am experiencing these sudden lows more frequently. It’s something I am going to bring up during my next CBT session. I keep telling myself that it is nearly the weekend which means I can get to spend time with Dave.

I am feeling incredibly isolated at the moment. It is really disheartening when I am making a conscious effort to message friends and they ignore me. It would be easier for me to wait until they get in touch with me. But that is not going to help with my recovery. My anxiety is then triggered when I have seen that my friends have read my messages and not replied. My anxiety feeds my depression and vice versa. It really feels as if the more friends that know that I have anxiety and depression, the less effort they make. 

If you know anyone who with mental illness please try to stay in regular contact with them. It is a lonely place to be when you live with mental illness day in, day out. It is hard to be strong during difficult days. Even something as simple as a quick text message can help someone with mental illness to keep going.

Talking and trainers

On Monday afternoon I had my first CBT session through the NHS. It went well, better then I anticipated. My therapist is really nice and I felt comfortable talking to her. She said that my levels of self awareness are high. I filled in a questionnaire and scored severely depressed and anxious which didn’t shock me. I have my next session on Monday morning. 

I had my hair cut again yesterday. My undercut is even shorter then when it was first put in. My hairdresser shaved it this time and I really like it. I have my hair even shorter than my last cut. I would post a photo but I am looking rough because I am not sleeping very well again. 

My sleep pattern is really disturbed again. I am feeling tired during the day and by the time I go to bed at night I often have difficulty falling asleep. I am waking up during the night and so I don’t feel refreshed when I wake up in the mornings. If it continues I am going to have to see my GP. 

It’s my 30th birthday in two weeks. As part of my presents, Dave has got me these Reebok Cardio Ultra trainers for the gym:

   
 They were recommended by my gym trainer friend. She wears them and has noticed a massive difference in supporting her knees and back. I have been told they get some time to get used to. My friend suggested bringing my current nikes to switch into when needed. I am not at the gym now until Monday so I will have to wait until then to try them out. 

Next Saturday I am going for a Chinese to celebrate mine and my brother’s birthday. Our birthdays are only a few days apart. Dave and I are going to see Halestorm on the Monday after. He is taking me to our favourite Mexican on my birthday. 

I have some anxiety about the Halestorm gig. I think this stems from my experience during the last gig I went to. It was far from enjoyable and all I wanted to do was leave the venue. Dave has said that we can stand where I am comfortable which will probably near an exit of some kind. 

Walter’s busy weekend

As I was at Dom’s Mum’s wedding all day on Friday and Dave was in work, Walter spent the day at my parents house. He loves going there. As soon as we arrived, Walter’s tail was wagging and he was so happy to see my parents. I made a quick exit so as not to upset Walter. When he worked out I had gone he was looking for me around the house and kept putting his paw up on their front door which is what he does when he wants to go outside. He had a lovely time at my parents house and was fussed over. 

  
Fast asleep on my mum’s knee!

Saturday was week 6 of 8 of Walter’s puppy class. We looked at lead pulling. Walter did really well with this; responding quickly to what we we told to do.

Saturday afternoon we went round to visit our friends at their house. Their border collie called Fly was the first dog Walter met. They had a lovely time together. Walter was so playful and didn’t stop for hours. My friend got her camera out and got some lovely photos:

   
    
    
    
    
 
On Sunday we had a lazy day. Walter was worn out and I was from the wedding and a busy Saturday. So much so that Walter and I ended up snoozing on the couch. I really appreciated Dave taking this photo!

  
We decided to open up the bed we bought Walter when we first got him. When Dave picked it up from Argos it was huge compared to 9 week old Walter. Plus on Saturday Walter enjoyed sitting in Fly’s bed! 

   
    
 
I decided this week that I would teach Walter to high five. I only started yesterday and he has picked it up really quickly. He can now do – sit, lie down, turn, wave, speak and high five. He gets so excited when he knows I have treats out for when we are going to practise 🙂