Main » October 2005
October 31, 2005
Full of Emptiness
Perhaps that title is merely an oxymoron-- two elements in opposition of one another. A dichotomy I can explain, yet it makes perfect sense. Welcome to my life.
It's been a crazy week. Crazy weekend as well. I've been on auto-pilot the last several days. No thoughts in, no thoughts out. Just numb, I suppose. That is-- until I read Paul's email on Saturday. I can't stop thinking about it. Why is it so hard for me to let people in? To accept the help they offer? Why do I feel I have to do this all on my own, when I have 30+ people out there who would be willing to do what they could-- if only I'd suck up my pride (or maybe it's simply guilt) and ask for it. But then again-- asking for help was never my strong point. Never my "forte" so-to-speak.
Paul mentioned how he (as well as others at work) weren't aware of what I dealt with day in and day out. They never saw it. Sure, they saw my work with Allie, or with the other kids....but not the sort of life that goes on outside the safety of those walls. I made SURE I kept that part of me inside. I never said much to anyone about my life, my past... the things I'd been through. The things I still face today. I spent nearly every day for the last four years with everyone, and it wasn't until fairly recently that anyone knew anything in detail. I was simply known as the one who never ate, the one who ran, worked out.... but no one ever made the connection (save for the few people I worked directly with every day).
I dunno... I've had so many emails, so many messages lately from people expressing their concern, their worry, their support or help if I ever need it. It's so hard for me to imagine that I could mean that much to anyone. That anyone would care what I did or didn't do. But--- they have proven me wrong.
I don't know.... I'm not quite sure what I'm thinking right now... too much to sort out at the moment....
October 26, 2005
I still can't decide about the Effexor.I promised Judy today that I wouldn't go off it totally just yet, and I'd at least stay on the 75mg for now. I don't know how to explain my reasons for wanting off it. It's not that I think it makes me UN-real, but more it's the feelings that don't seem real. Yes, the effexor keeps me at a higher base-line, but it's like.... being emotionally flat-lined. Emotionally dead. What sort of life is that? THAT is not normal. Everyone has their good days, their bad days, their ok days. But what's un-normal is being at the exact same level day in and day out.
I don't know if it's the reduced effexor or what-- but I feel a hell of a lot more these days than I did before. I don't know if that's good or bad. But if it means I actually FEEL something, then I'll take the bad days with it. The smallest things make me feel like crying and leave me fighting back tears. But for the last 16 years (at least), I've avoided the tears, the feelings, everything via the anorexia, the cutting, the running. THAT was my "effexor". But I'm tired of all of that. So tired.
As Nic said the other day, we have so much more to live for and so much life left to live and to experience, and we're only throwing it away for some random, ever-changing number on some scale. Nic-- even though she is also anorexic, is this life-line for me. Even though we only met (well, in person) a week or so ago, I feel like we've known each other forever. Yeah-- we could potentially be "bad" for one another, and get trapped in our E.D.'s together, but she and I have already talked about that, and we're not going to let it get that way. We are both quite aware of the possibilities that could lie ahead. But we pull each other AWAY from that sort of thinking. Not always, I admit, but it's better than never, right?
Perfect example-- she and I were at the gym the other day, and we walked into the locker room after our workout and, obviously, passed a number of mirrors. Almost as if on cue, we both immediately turned to face one of the mirrors and began the self-critical talk.
The, "god I hate my thighs", "well, I hate my waist", "yeah, but your hips are still smaller than mine," blah blah blah. A few minutes of that, and Nic was the first to realize it. Pulled me away from the mirror, with a definitive, "No. We're not gonna do this..."
In a strange sort of way-- she keeps me... grounded... focused. But not on the ED. Even at the gym, it's not really this competitive sort of thing. It's really not.
Pete asked if it was good for us to hang out together. Workout together. I tried to explain this all to him and couldn't find the words, just promised that we weren't bad for one another. Tried to explain the same thing to Judy, and once again-- failed. So frustrating. Have all these thoughts in my head, but can't give them a voice. I can't say what I want to or need to. And then I just get even more upset with myself for it, and shut down.
Had a tough session today. I don't know what it was that started everything, but was fighting back tears again. Why does it always seem to come to that lately? I don't mean for it to. I don't want to sound like I'm negative all the time or that I'm just whining about stupid, insignificant things.
Stayed after my session with Judy and curled up on the couch in the other office and took a nap. It was either that or go to the gym-- and I was so tired. Emotionally drained. No energy. I didn't realize just how tired I was. Fell asleep about 3:30 and didn't get up until Judy came in and woke me up right before she went home about 5:30 or 5:45. She thought I'd already left, but thought she'd check first just to make sure. Got some good sleep though-- which I've needed. Especially since I'll be up most of the night studying for my exam tomorrow in Educational Psycholgy.
I shouldn't have done it-- but right before I fell asleep, the only thought in my head was cutting. I'm horrible. Got my blades out of my purse. Took off my watch. Cut. Then cut again. Watched it bleed for awhile. Cut again. When I was 'satisified' with the amount of blood I lost, put on a bandaid, put everything back in my purse and slept harder and more soundly than I have in a LONG time. These days, I go to bed tired, I wake up tired, but I don't really get any decent sleep.
Judy wants me to write a "goodbye letter" to the eating disorder. It's an assignment that has come up a couple of times, and I was never really able to do it. I couldn't finish the letter. Either that, or it ended up being more of an apology for all the ways I'd failed, all the ways I'd let the eating disorder down, than a goodbye letter.
My assignment from last week was to draw/paint/create an image of what the ED looks like to me. I've been working on that one all week. I've never had this distinctive image in my head, because my whole life, the anorexia has always looked like... well.. me. One and the same. No distinction between the two. No separation. It's this nebulus sort of thing with a voice. I can paint/draw the feelings... the thoughts, the ideas that come with the anorexia, but I'm having a hard time giving it it's own identity, separate from me.
Pete and I have talked a lot about inpatient lately. It's a decided thing. I made him that promise. So--- looks like sometime in January. I'm looking at a few different places.... Reniassance in Mississippi, Mercy Ministries in Tennessee, Oceanaire in Rancho Palos Verdes, California and Westwind, up in Canada. Yeah, Canada. From what I've heard about them, and the stuff I've recieved from them, they have a wonderful program up there. Lots of individual therapy and group therapy, as well as various groups... like nutrition, etc. Plus, they're only 500 a day, CDA (Canadian dollar). We figured it out that a month of treatment there would only be about $15,000 USD. They take patients from the US, though I'm not entirely sure yet how they do the insurance between countries. But if I were an insurance company, I'd rather pay $15,000 per month, than $25K or $35K. I dunno. Nothing definite yet.
The other place, Oceanaire sounds good as well. Group 4x's a week, individual therapy 3x's a week. In addition, they have stuff like meal planning/preparation group, including grocery stores, which is one of my biggest causes of fear. They teach you how to go to restaurants, and order normally, and just.... be normal in that sort of environment, which at this point-- I can not do. I refuse to set foot in any sort of restaurant, unless it's a coffee shoppe. That I can handle. They also do massage therapy, art therapy, writing/poetry groups, yoga, exercise therapy and a few other groups. Granted, that place is a 2-month (average) stay, but... it actually sounds more.... survivable than some of the other places. [cough, cough] Mercy [cough, cough].
I think Judy was right though, when she said last week that sometimes people are unable to recover in their normal environments. They have to totally get out of that place in order to change things. And that's where I'm at. I'm not so sure that going out of the COUNTRY is necessary (Westwind), as that's a little far, but if their program is good, I would consider it. Canada's health care system is far superior to the US. The cost of treatment there seems expensive to Canadians, who aren't used to paying much of anything for health care services. But for Americans, who pretty much pay every fascet of their health care coverage, it's relatively inexpensive by comparison to other US ED programs.
I don't know..... It's a lot to think about. But I promised Pete I wouldn't back out of it. Promised him that whenever that day finally comes, I'd get on that plane and go. Even if I lost control and tried to fight him on it. Even if tried to talk my way out of it and make excuses for it. No matter what happens, I'd still go. This isn't just about me anymore. It doesn't just affect me, but Pete as well. And I can't continually hurt him with the things I do to myself. Especially when all he can do is stand back and watch, because I won't let him help and I can't explain things in a way that make sense to anyone but me.
Ok.. I think I've rambled on enough for one day....
October 24, 2005
I knew exactly where I was headed before I ever got here. It's like I stood back and watched me take those deliberate steps backwards, knowing what I was doing, where I was going, and yet-- not giving a f**k about the downfall.
So here I am, once again, looking up from the bottom of this hole I've dug myself into. How much further can I go? I guess the question really, is do I want to find that out in the first place? Part of me says no. Part of me says hell yeah.
I met Nicole at the gym last night. 4 hours later I returned home, and she to her apartment. Pete wasn't happy. Said 4 hours at the gym is too long. I tried to justify it all by saying, "well, we didn't do cardio the whole time." (as though that were a perfectly valid excuse for the obsessive-compulsive, neurotic trance-like state I tend to find myself in when I'm at the gym, where Time doesn't exist). Pete seemed to accept that answer. Or maybe he was just extremely tired as it was nearly 2 am when I walked in the door.
I dunno. Does it matter? Back to wearing the knee brace again. Damn it. Runner's knee. Tendons pulling away from the bone. No pain, no gain, right? That's what vicodin is for. painkiller. Kill the pain. Just make everything fucking STOP already. Inside. Outside. Somebody just make it all go AWAY. I just want to disappear.
I don't know what the hell my problem is these days. I've woken up each morning feeling a little lower than the day before. And it only goes downhill from there. I feel a miasma of emotions all at once, and yet I couldn't name them if I tried. All I know is I've got this perpetual... lump in my throat, like I could cry at any second. But I won't give in. I won't. The more I try and pretend I'm fine, the worse it becomes. I think with the reduced Effexor, I feel more. Before, I was pretty much numb all the time. No extremes either direction. And though I can't name it, it's all there. But ya know what? F**k the Effexor. I'm not going to take it anymore. I'm not going to spend the rest of my life in some state of pseudo-happiness or pseduo-reality, simply because I can't maintain a state of semi-normalcy on my own. It's a cover up. It's only hiding the true thoughts, true feelings beneath little peach pills marked 75mg, under the excuse that it's a "chemical thing", as though that alone is justification. As though that answer is good enough.
I was on three a day. 225 mg. I'm down to one though, just 75 mg. Another week and I'll be off them totally. I know I can't just stop taking it all together, as the withdrawl effects are enough to make one seriously consider some form of suicide. Anything to end it. And for one like me who's already harbored those thoughts in many different ways, many different forms over the years, that's probably not the best place to go. I may be mental, but I'm not stupid.
I kinda like the mini-withdrawl effects though. I'm getting used to it. It's strangely like little.... explosions going off inside my head at random times throughout the day. My eyes get blurry for just a brief moment. It feels like my brain is just floating around... swimming around and around inside it's own little sphere of.... nothing. Like having a constant head-cold, or being just a bit high. That swimmy, semi-disoriented, not-quite-there-but-functional-disassociative state of mind. It's strangely comforting. Like feeling the old familiar feeling of hunger pains. Or sore muscles. Shin splints and runner's knee. Blade on Skin. Rip me open. Tear me apart. Make me bleed. Only because I can hurt myself so much harder than any of you ever could. My own little F**k You to an ever darkening world. Am I just being irrational. Or is this some sort of morbid documentation into the depths of darkness. Something concrete. Something tangible. Something they can all print off and hold in their hands later and read and maybe understand me..... post mortem.
I'm not me. I don't feel like me. Where did this sudden anxiety, anger come from? Tense and agitated and I want to cut. To run. To self-destruct in the most extreme way possible. The hardest way. And what better way than to starve. To draw it out, slow and painful. To end it all in some quick method is too good for me. I don't deserve that luxury.
I should have gone to Judy's on Friday. I spent the day trying to get out of my head. Trying to get out of the clutches of this all-consuming depression... or anxiety.. or whatever you want to call it. I cut again. Cut on Saturday too. I knew it was only a matter of days before I gave into the incessant thoughts and feelings of actually carrying out the action. Been fighting that all week. Should have gone to Judy's this afternoon as well. At least it would have kept me out of my head... in a safe place.... not by myself. But lately-- I consider going, and then this other side kicks in and I feel guilty for it. Like-- at 26 years old, I should be able to handle being by myself without resorting to some form of self-destructive behavior. But, whatever.
The weekend pretty much sucked. I don't know how much of it was due to the physical self or the emotional/mental self, or perhaps some morbid combination of the two working against an already overloaded mind.
The only good part? I met Nicole on Thursday night. Amazing, yet sad how much we have in common.
Random hypothetical question for the day: What's the point in life if you're not gonna live it in the first place? Hypothetical. Hence the words in bold. I don't need to be 302'd somewhere. (302-- code for being held against will for 72 hours to keep one safe from oneself.) This is my journal. My thoughts. But-- ya never know who just might stumble across it. I'll take the risk though if writing means I gain just a fraction of an ounce of sanity, stability back. At least for a few more hours.
I want to cry, to scream, to pull out my hair and beat the shit outta something. But I'll just go to the gym, then go home. Smile. Bury the anger, the anxiety again. Cause I don't know where it's coming from in the first place, and part of me is quite afraid to find out.
October 21, 2005
Consumed by Self-Destruction
Consumed by Self-Destruction
You consume me, you control me
when I thought I had it all and
I find instead I've lost everything
to the chaos in my mind
Where's the ME I long to find, the
me I never knew? I'm sinking, falling
fast and the hole goes so much deeper
than I ever imagined it could go
I feel you inside me.. clawing your way
through my soul. My life. Scratching at
the bars these ribs have created, locking
yourself deep inside.
No one can reach me. Save me and I can't save
myself no matter how hard I've tried.
Is this merely the beginning of another
downward spiral, or am I nearing the end
of this pitiful existence?
One foot in the grave, one foot out
looking for salvation, finding only pain I
never knew existed. Only because I thought
I'd starved it all away. Thought I'd made it disappear.
But it never left, it's still here. Fighting against
a troubled mind with things I can't escape.
Drowing inside from withheld tears and all the things
I constantly feel but can never explain.
I'm at the bottom, yet I keep digging deeper
thinking I can find my way out
on my own, though I know
it's a never ending fight.
Just another lonely day
Another one of those days again. I should have gone to class this morning-- even if it would only have been a temporary reprieve from the torrent of thoughts that are consuming my life these days. I felt so weak, so exhausted this morning that I could barely get out of bed.
I'm now sitting on the couch, wrapped up in numerous blankets, drinking my coffee and trying to stay warm. It's so damn cold here. So cold. My nails are purple. I can live with the anorexia. I can't live with being cold. That's one thing I can not stand. It's like once I get cold, I can't warm up. It's the sort of cold that goes right to the bone.
I need out of my head. It's going to be a long day-- I can already tell. I should go out to Judy's house today--- cause I know I shouldn't be alone.... but there's a part of me that says I shouldn't take up her time like that...especially on her day off. I should be able to be by myself without needing someone else there to keep me safe...well, from ME. Judy will probably disagree with me... but... I dunno.
How can I want both health and recovery to the same degree? How can I find safety... shelter in this madness? The last 16 years I've spent my days in a state of dichotomous thinking. Black and White. All or Nothing. I contradict myself with everything, find justification for every action. Even if my reasons are far from logical, they make perfect sense to me. I don't know how to explain this. I don't even know what I'm trying to say.
I just need out of my head for awhile, and writing just isn't working today. At least not right now. Cutting seems like a better choice....
October 20, 2005
Hunger hurts but starving works....
I love the song "Paper Bag" by Fiona Apple. That line just sticks with me.... "hunger hurts but starving works, when it costs too much to love."
I met Nikki today... well, tonight I guess. She left a message on my xanga.com journal and we found out we were not only from the same city, but went to the same gym. Small world. She's anorexic as well. We were gonna go get coffee, but Moxie's was closed so we just went to her apartment and hung out there for a few hours. I'm amazed at just how many things we have in common. It was so easy to talk to her... she understood me.
The thing that just really surprised me though, is that we were talking about being anorexic and I said something about how I felt so incredibly fat next to her, cause she was so tiny. And then she says she was thinking that same thing about ME. WTF??? So then, she asked what I weigh, and I told her. Turns out we are within 5 pounds of one another. So how can she look so thin, and I look so gigantic when we are the same exact height, pretty much the same weight? I don't get it.
The thing with Nic though, is that she is more in the recovery mindset than I am. Her personal trainer at the gym (Nathan) has her on a meal plan almost identical to the one Marcus had me on (like 1700 calories a day). She's been doing pretty well with following it, and said in the last 10 days, she hasn't gained even a pound.
That doesn't make any sense to me what-so-ever. I simply can not comprehend how one can eat and stay the same exact weight. Marcus won't work with me anymore cause I've lost about 25 pounds since I first saw him. I won't follow the meal plan, even if I start out the day with every intention of doing it. I simply can't. As I start to fill in the list for my 'daily intake' the anxiety grows. As the calories pass 500 and then edge closer and closer to 800 I freak out. I think the highest calorie intake I ever had was about 600-700 for the day. And then I'd freak out, purge the last thing I ate and go on a total water-coffee-diet soda fast the following day.
Anyway, Nic and I talked about a lot of things. And it really surprised me that she could feel bad for NOT eating all she should have (still 900 calories short for the day). My mind twists that all around and I feel ELATED if I fall short. I feel guilt and... I dunno... hate and anger at myself if I DO eat. At 1700 calories, Marcus said I'm still 7-800 calories short of where he wants me to be. I was barely able to do 1/3 of that and the guilt was horrendous.
I had Monday and Tuesday off for Fall Break. I should have gone to Judy's both of those days-- just to do homework or whatever, so at least so I wouldn't be home by myself all day long. But instead, I stayed home, trapped by my disorder and all the things associated with it. NOT a good thing. I spent the entire day in this semi-disociative state. Like I was watching myself go through the motions of life. I tried to eat on Monday.... just a small salad. Felt so damn guilty over those measly 50 calories, that I had to get rid of it. Which set me up for fasting most of this week. Tuesday, the thoughts of cutting intensified, and I've been considering the thought all week long... haven't yet done it.... but damn.... it's getting stronger all the time.
I need to stop thinking. I need to go to sleep. I've been sleeping so horribly the last week or so--- even worse than before.....
Too many thoughts
It's been a long week. So many thoughts, yet I haven't felt like digging through them all, hence the reason I haven't posted lately. The days come and go, one passing right into the next. Yet the days drag on. I'm down to 150mg on the Effexor, and I can already tell a difference. I'm not so sure it's a good difference however, as the last two weeks have seemed a lot harder to get through. I think about cutting more often (though, it's been two weeks or so since I've done it). It's on my mind more and more each day and I know it's only going to be a matter of days before I'm not strong enough anymore to fight against it. I feel guilty everytime I do it, but it's also a relief in a way.
I feel guilty anytime I eat anything. And I mean ANYthing. If it's not coffee or tea or diet soda, I purge. I hate doing it. I hate it and hate myself a little more everytime I do it. The scale says I'm losing more weight, but I don't see it. In my eyes, I'm only getting bigger by the day, taking up more space than I deserve.
Pete said the other day that he doesn't want to see me break... said that he can see me destroying myself a little more each day. And all I could do was whisper a quiet, "I know...". He never said I am losing weight, cause I guess he thought that would be triggering for me or something, but said he can tell that all my clothes are bigger now. Even jeans I just bought a month ago or so are nearly falling off my hips.
So why the hell am I blind to my own self-destruction? There's a part of me that knows exactly what I am doing to myself and exactly what the outcome could potentially be. But there's still that invincibility ideology stuck inside my head that I'm not going to die. I'm fine. I'm not sick. To be sick, one would have to be "thin" and I'm nowhere near that yet. I've been within 48 hours of death-- literally-- and I'm still here. Still breathing, still going to school and working and running. I'm still alive. And because of that--I keep thinking if I can be THAT close to death and still survive, then I am stronger than my physical self. As though telling myself that will somehow make it true. Maybe this is just me trying to convince myself that the irrationality of my ways is, in fact, quite rational. I can justify anything I do. I don't know though if it's justification or merely excuses.
Pete asked if the reason behind all this is due to the fact that going inpatient is only a couple of months off. January is the month I agreed on with Pete. So, because I made that promise already, I know I can't turn back, and I'm bound and determined to go inpatient at an "acceptable" weight... somewhere in the 90-pound range. I've got a little ways to go yet, but going by numbers--- I'm really not all THAT far off.
Haven't eaten since hmmm... Monday or Tuesday. For me it's either totally starve, or puke. And I'd rather starve. If I'm going inpatient, at least that way I'll deserve to be there, taking up space that someone else deserves more than me (which pretty much means anyone else on the planet).
Yesterday Judy and I had a little "discussion" about the Effexor. She doesn't think I should go off of it. Says it's not a good time for me. I know she's right, but I can NOT justify spending nearly $200 a month on myself. I can't do it. Not for meds or anything else. I don't remember what it's like NOT being on the meds, so (in my naive hypothesis) I keep thinking things will be different now. And I won't know for SURE unless I stop taking the meds. Also, the thought of having to take meds everyday just to keep me functional is a bit depressing. Sorta counteracts the reason I take it in the first place....
ugh.. I don't know.. I need to get to class...
October 14, 2005
Another day on Auto-Pilot
Today's another auto-pilot day. One of those days where I don't really feel anything either way. It's not a good day, not overly bad either. Just.... another day.
Last night wasn't so great though. I ordered ephedra and it came this week. I knew Pete wouldn't be too happy about it, so I didn't tell him. Well-- I was at class last night and he was in my scrapbook room. Why he was looking around in the back of my file drawer is beyond me, but he was and he found the ephedra. When he asked about it, I said yeah-- I had some. He said "I didn't know you had anymore" (he's the one that took most of the rest of my supply from earlier. I'd ordered two huge bottles of it right before the ban went into effect, so I'd have it). Anyway, the whole conversation was unexpected and I didn't want him to be upset over something like this, so I told him I'd just forgotten I'd had it and found it while I was cleaning out the linen closet. Then he reaches in his pocket and pulls out the packing slip, dated Oct. 5. Said, "explain this then". I felt horrible. I sat there and lied right to him, and he knew it. I don't think I've hated myself more than I did last night. We didn't talk much the rest of the night. My "I'm sorry" didn't do much, no matter how many times I said it. I didn't know what else to say. He never seems to accept "sorry" from me. He just says, yeah-- I know you are. And that's it.
Anyhow, he went outside to let the dogs out and my only thought was cutting. Punishment. I'm such a bitch. I can't believe I sat there and lied to him. I grabbed my blade out of my jewelry box and went into the bathroom. Not more than a minute later, Pete's knocking on the door, asking what I'm doing. I said I was going to the bathroom. He didn't believe that one either. Asked, "where's the blade?"
Somehow he just knows. It's like he's got little cameras all over the house and just KNOWS. He knows when I do and don't eat. Knows when I puke. When I cut.
I'll finish this one later.......
Ok.. finishing this one from earlier.
I haven't cut in about 2 weeks now.... but the last week or so, the thoughts have been horrible. I don't know if my bad week was due to the whole family thing from last weekend (Kaden's birthday), and having to see my ex-step-father and his family, or if it is reducing the effexor, or mid-terms, or just a combination of all of that. I think another part of it is the fact that I haven't been out for a good long run in several weeks. This damn bronchitis is still hanging around and I can't get over it. I've taken the antibiotics, and use the inhaler as prescribed, and take OTC stuff. But it's still hanging on. Damn my immune system! [laughs]
I guess the one good thing about this week is that I got the sweetest emails from Allie's mom. She was saying how they miss having me at the school and working with Allie. How I am an important part of their life and Allie's life, and they hold a special place in their family for me. She was talking about how she used to wonder why they were given a child with Autism, but doesn't ask that anymore cause she knows there's a reason even if she doesn't yet know what it is. Then she was talking about the anorexia, saying how I have so much to live for, and that so many people love me and care about me, and how many lives I've touched. I read that and was fighting back tears. It's so hard to believe that a lot of the time.... but I know Sandra meant every word of it.
I'm not sure what I'm gonna do over the next several days. I don't have class on Monday and Tuesday due to Fall break, and too much free time isn't always good. I start thinking too much...
Maybe I'll stop in at school and see the kids....
Posted by Wendy at 8:08 PM
October 13, 2005
So Many Thoughts
It's been a long week. Too long, in fact. I feel like I'm suspended somewhere in time, while the world moves on without me. It's a lonely feeling, being stuck here-- yet unable to pull myself out of these depths.
Why is it so hard for me to give this all up? What is it that keeps me going back to it time and time again, and making excuses, justifications for what I do and why I do it? It sounds so simple. Just eat. It's so much more than that. So much in fact, that I don't even know where to begin.
I feel a little lost. A LOT lost. Like a drifter in a dream, floating on clouds of illusion and... confusion. I could give a hundred different reasons for why I keep this up. But none of them are justifiable in the outside world. I say I want to be thin, but that's only a small part of all of this. I say I want to be understood, yet half the time I don't understand myself. I say I just want to be ME, yet, I'm not really sure who that is. I say I want to live my own life, yet I don't know what I want that to be.
I don't want to be what everyone else says I should be. I'm tired of having to live up to standards I can't meet. My family, but also myself. I make standards for myself that are far higher than anyone else can hold above me, yet it's everyone else's standards that affect me most. If I don't reach them, I've failed. At least with my own standards, they're on my own time table and there's not necessarily a specific time frame for reaching them, so long as I do.
I don't even know what I'm thinking right now.
Posted by Wendy at 8:51 AM
October 10, 2005
The Nightmares Are Back
I'm down to 150mg. Effexor right now, and even reducing it by 75mg a day is already affecting me. I feel the withdrawl effects if I miss the dose by even an hour. On the 225mg., I used to be able to go about 4-6 hours later before I'd feel anything negative. Now, I'm dizzy within about 30-45 minutes of taking it late.
Half the time, I don't even feel like me. Like I'm just sorta drifting through the days. It's oddly like that... stoned sorta feeling you get after taking the first hit, before you're completely high. I feel like I have trouble thinking... talking at times. Like my words are somewhat slurred at times. It's bizzare. I don't remember it being like this the last time I went off the Effexor.
The worst part though, is that the nightmares have started again. I lie awake for hours, petrified of going to sleep. When I finally DO sleep, it's more like I drift off into this semi-conscious, semi-paralyzed state. And then it begins.
I dreamt last night of animal-like creatures surrounding our house. Pete and I were there trying to fight them off... they were attacking the dogs, trying to kill them. And then the strangest part-- I look over towards the garage (for some reason our bed was out on the front lawn... don't ask.. I can't explain why) and one of these creature things was dragging the dead body of a girl into the garage. I'm guessing about 14 yrs. old or so.
I couldn't move. Couldn't breathe.
I could hear Pete calling my name trying to wake me up. But he was so far away and I couldn't reach him. I woke up hyperventilating, and in tears. Ok-- I don't normally cry. Not during the day and not at night. Most of the time-- I don't even dream, and if I do, I don't remember it the next morning, and it doesn't wake me up at night.
It took awhile for Pete to convince me that I was fine. To convince me that the dogs were both fine and that I was safe. I laid awake till well past 2 a.m. trying to fall asleep, but afraid to do so. I forgot what this was like. It's been awhile. I can't take naps druing the day, cause when I do, I get that paralyzed feeling again, and literally feel like there is some other presence in the room. Like someone standing in the corner watching me, but I can't open my eyes and I can't wake up. I get this physical feeling like I'm either a) hovering over the bed, but not really laying on top of it, or b) being pulled off the end of the bed. Literally dragged by my feet. But I can't wake up. How fucked up is that??? I feel crazy even WRITING this down, but it's not like it's a one-time occurrance. It's happened before, on numerous occassions.
So anyhow, I finally drifted off into a fitful sleep, tossing and turning for awhile. I began to hear these hollow sounding voices in my head. Not real loud, not real clear, and not quite enough to make out full words or sentences or anything. But I could swear I heard my name.... and then I started seeing these... flashes of images.... I don't know how to explain it.. places... faces I couldn't identify... and then just the name "Doug" kept repeating over and over. I couldn't wake up. Couldn't breathe once again. Pete woke me up again. The strangest part, is that I don't know anyone named Doug, nor have I been in contact recently with someone named Doug. I'm, half tempted to look in the obituary section of this evening's newspaper to see if there's someone in there with that name. Not that I believe in apparitions of the paranormal or anything like that, but it's definitely a thought that crossed my mind. I can't explain it. I can't explain any of this except that I don't want to fall asleep tonight. I dread every hour that passes. I'm exhausted, but I can't take a nap right now. Thank god I ordered more ephedra on Friday. Should be here in the next few days. It keeps me awake. It keeps me going so I don't have to sleep and I don't have to dream or have these nightmares. If this is from reducing the Effexor, then I've got another month of dizziness and nightmares to get through.
October 7, 2005
On Effexor and Withdrawl
Ok-- maybe I'm stupid, but I decided for some unknown reason that I could 'play God' and take myself off Effexor XR without Dr. Keller's approval. Without health insurance at the moment, I refuse to pay $179 a month for the prescription. No matter what anyone says, I can NOT justify that. Pete says I'm worth it. Judy says the same. But that alone is not enough reason for me. I appreciate the thought though.
So, I took my last dose on Tuesday evening, trying to stretch out the time between Monday and Tuesday's dose as long as possible. I finally gave in about 7 p.m. on Wednesday. My sister just happened to have called on Tuesday to tell me that Gwen-- a woman from our running group was telling her about her her experience with Effexor. Apparently her doctor said that if she's ever without the meds and can't get a refill for a few days (like a holiday weekend or something), to take benedryl with ibuprofin and it will kill the withrawl effects of antidepressants. I'd never heard of that, but who am I to question it. Gwen swears by it.
So, Wednesday night about 11, I was beginning to feel the effects, so I took two benedryl, and two 500mg. ibuprofin, hoping to avoid at least the worst of the withdrawl. I've been through that once before, and it was the eptiome of the term "living hell." Anyway, took the benedryl combo about 11, then again before I went to bed. Took half a dose when I woke up. The only problem is that I was extremely tired all day Thursday-- my long day of classes. 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. I somehow made it through my first two classes, though I honestly only remember the last 5 minutes of my horticulture class, and do not remember the drive home. I guess you just gotta take the lesser of two evils.
Finally gave in a called Dr. Keller late Thursday afternoon. The dizziness was more than I could handle. I never got the massive headaches this time around though, so I figured I could deal with the dizziness. That didn't work out so well. I explained the situation to Dee-Dee, Dr. K's assistant, and how I wanted to go off the Effexor, cause I didn't want to pay nearly $200 a month for one prescription. The damn meds I just paid for a few days ago for the bronchitis were right about $100 as it is! Dr. Keller gave me enough sample packs of Effexor to last through the next month-6 weeks, and then I'm supposed to make an appointment sometime in November to go back in. UGH. I like Dr. K., but I HATE HATE HATE being weighed there.
Dr. K. knows about the eating disorder, and actually is pretty up-front about it. I dunno-- I feel like everytime I go in, I have to weigh less than the time before. Why? Hard to explain. It's like I have to weigh less to feel like I actually deserve to be there. It's not that I feel I have to 'prove' my disorder, but in a way-- it is, I guess. I know that sounds completely asinine. If I weigh more, even by a measley one or two pounds, I feel horrendous guilt for it. I feel horrible for the person who has to weigh me and see how fat I really am. The numbers don't lie. People can try to convince me differently, but there's still a three-digit number glowing in red on the electronic scale. No one can deny that.
Anyhow, it's probably not the greatest time to go off the Effexor, as the fall and winter months are usually a lot worse for me as far as the depression goes. But, two years ago, I got through it without taking the Effexor, just like I said I would. So maybe this time will be different. I dunno. I guess time is the only one who can give me an answer to that. Maybe this year will be the same. Maybe not. I suppose if I go totally mental by January, I'm looking at IP for then, anyhow.
Posted by Wendy at 8:36 PM
October 4, 2005
It's October already and I wonder where the months have gone. It seems only yesterday that Pete and I moved in here. I love autumn. The changing colors, the cool mornings and warm (sort of) days. Curling up on the couch with a pile of blankets and a good (ana) book, feeling small and secure in my little cocoon. Nothing can hurt me. Nothing can touch me. I feel safe, even if it's only in my head. It's oddly triggering for me, if that makes any sense at all. I can't explain why.
Maybe the change of seasons is somewhat of a reminder that even when I feel like my world is slowly crumbling around me, and everything else is moving at a faster pace than I can comprehend, there is still at least SOME continuity to hold onto. No matter what happens, the seasons will still change and life will still go on.
I had an appointment with the dr. on campus yesterday. Turns out the 'yearly cold' is really 'acute bronchitis' and I'm now on super strong antibiotics and an inhaler. $94.00 later. Reminder to self: Never let my health insurance lapse--for whatever reason. I still need to get my effexor or face the horrid consequences of massive withdrawl symptoms. There's another $178. That's for ONE month supply. With the Yasmin, my current prescription cost per month is running well over $200 a month, not counting additional stuff like antibiotics.
Pete says not to worry about it. We argued last night about the cost. I said I don't want to pay $178 for one prescription. Told him I'm not worth that. He disagreed. Said not to think that way, and not to worry about it. Said we'd pay whatever the cost was, cause I needed my meds. I finally went to Walgreen's a little after midnight and picked up the two prescriptions for the bronchitis, but not the Effexor yet. I've got one day to decide what I'm gonna do, cause my last dose is today. Do I just suck it up and deal with the withdrawl (I deserve it anyhow), or do I forget about the cost and just pay for it. Like food-- I wish money didn't exist.
I've been on autopilot the last few days. Pretty much all weekend, in fact. But sometimes I welcome the numbness of thought and emotion. At least I had a fairly good weekend. No thoughts made it easy to get through the days.
Started filling out the application for Mercy (IP). As I fill in the required information, I disconnect. It's not me writing. I fill in my name and don't recognize it as mine. It's just a name, no person behind it. Just black in scratched onto the pure white fibers of the application. It asks my address. My phone number. Asks if I get along with my parents (no) and if I've ever had __________ (circle all that apply). I'm a little concerned about the numerous choices that fit my life. Wonder if this will help or hinder my application.
They ask my height (5'8). They ask my weight (115) and I feel horribly guilty. Horribly fat. Feel like I'm suffocating in my own fatness. Too much, too much, too much. I feel guilty for having to write down three numbers. It should only be two numbers. Not three. Three is far too much. Too heavy, too..... everything. I don't even feel like I'm me anymore. Who was I to begin with? Yes-- I know what I like, such as running, writing, art, etc. But that doesn't encapsulate all that I am. Who is Wendy in the first place? Everything is based on what I do. I don't know myself any other way.
Pete tells me I'm beautiful. That I'm smart, that I'm any one of a number of other (positive) adjectives he can think of. Friends tell me similar things. I listen, but don't hear it. I listen but it's not me that they're talking about. It can't be, as I would think I should know myself better than other people do. After all, I'm the one that has to live in this (fat) body, this life.
Damn.. I need to stop thinking for awhile. I need to get ready for class....
Posted by Wendy at 5:34 AM