Therapy: Week 3

I’m pleased to say that Week 3 was good and I know that I engaged more. This was because of the activity that the therapist used. The session was based around expressing my emotions. Last week, we discussed how I find colour a helpful engagement tool as well as visuals. So the therapist got out a pack of Emotional Literacy cards. (These were the ones).

These cards each had seemingly random doodles on. For example, a brick wall, a broken heart, a sky, squiggles. She said usually she would ask clients to choose 2 or 3 that represent the past, present and their ideal future. However, she asked me just to do the present as that would be more manageable. I didn’t think I’d enjoy the activity as it seemed quite childish, however it was ideal for me. In situations with therapists etc I often retreat to a child like state and so they were pitched at the correct level.

I chose 4 cards and then we discussed each and related then to me. They were helpful with my engagement as I felt under less pressure to answer questions correctly. I felt a lot more at ease with talking freely and she does seem to be understanding me (very difficult)! 

We also discussed what I had been expecting from this therapy. I’d been expecting counselling regarding said incident, as the organisation exists to support victims of sexual assault. However, the therapist corrected me: how could I help you if I didn’t take the other things into account? They are not separate things, they are all interlinked. I couldn’t begin to counsel you around the incident without understanding why you feel as you do. 

I had put the incident in one box and my mental health in another box. I feel much more positive about the therapy now I know we might be able to unravel other things too. 

  

Therapy: Week 2.

I’m highly unlikely to share detailed updates of any therapy. But I did say I would update once I had started any. So yesterday, was my second week of a long process. 

I’ve waited a year for this one and hopefully it will be worth that wait. Last year I had an initial assessment to put me on that waiting list & the organisation have been good in updating me when I have asked. 

I didn’t make it to the first appointment which was no surprise. I went into meltdown & could not be persuaded to go. But a couple of weeks later I did attend. It was a pretty standard first appointment, aiming to get to know me a little. Questions were asked about my background & I was sent away with a couple of questionnaires to complete myself. I’m quite bored of these questions as I feel like I’ve answered them over & over again but I was pleasantly surprised by one of the questionnaires. It was focused around disassociation & never has a questionnaire been so appropriate! 

Week 2 included separate conversations around previous relationships and emotions. 

I’ve been told that I will attend 6 initial appointments & that sixth will consist of myself and the therapist discussing if we think it will be helpful and if I am ready to engage with it. I’ve consciously tried to engage so far and have definitely responded more than previously. I’m pleased with the effort that I have put in, but it’s been emphasised that I need to engage even more. It’s exceptionally difficult because I know how much progress I have already made with engagement, but as I’ve not known the therapist previously, she obviously does not know this. 

In order to try and help with this engagement, the lady picked up on my enjoyment from colouring and has said that she can use this. We also discussed how I find it easier to convey emotions and thoughts to professionals if I write them down. 

Zzzz

Ohhh but sleeping tablets are bad for you. You should come off them. 

I never want to come off of mine due to sleep such as this:


Who would say no to that?!

I’ve taken zolpidem for a year & trazadone for a few months. Yes, they are addictive, but deep sleep wins the battle hands down. Without them I was barely sleeping. & withdrawing now leads to rebound insomnia, nightmares, vivid dreams, night sweats. Zolpidem guarantees me 7 hours which is the perfect amount.

Bottom line is: I feel much better when I’ve slept! 

Day 2 of the New Goal

Today was harder…but I did better! The weather was beautiful today but that made it harder to walk once I got home from work. I waited until about 20:45 before I went for a walk, it was the perfect temperature. Shorts and vest top weather. I went for a longer walk, partly to make up my steps & partly to absorb the lovely day. I’ve also the temperature to thank for my water intake!

A couple of good MH reads from today 

I read some really good mental health posts & today I’ve read two that I think are worth sharing. 

The first of which, is useful to yourself as well as family & friends. Find this here.

 
The second is potentially the best self-help checklist that I’ve read. Find this here.