Fibromyalgia – The Flare

So here I stand wearing nothing but a soft sports bra, and very soft panties because anything else against my skin is complete agony.  The breeze from the fan keeps my body cool, maybe cooler than I want to feel, but turning it off would make me feel nauseous.  This is how it starts.  There is a mental checklist of red flags that signal I am about to have a flare-up.

I can almost feel my brain telling the over-active neurons within the central nervous system what body part it should attack.  It usually starts with an intense tingling sensation in my right hand,  moves quickly across my upper shoulders, then shoots down my spine, and then zap!…  My body now starts to feel as if it has been set on fire, with nails being dragged across my burning flesh.  Agony is what I feel and this sensation is called Allodynia.  *

Did you think I was in a “ full flair” yet?  Nope, this is just the start.

Ugh.  My ears are so sensitive to sound! Why is everything on max volume?  The fan that is keeping me from feeling nauseated, is making me freeze now.  A few hours have passed and my body is experiencing about five to seven different sensations all at once, whether they go together or not. The feeling that my brain is too big for my skull, is a strange one.  Around this time I usually start to throw –up, because the pain and my senses are on over-load.  So now, here I lie on the hardwood floor, with a low –grade fever, my skin on fire, the bones in my spine and upper neck, and sometimes my face feels as if it is being completely crushed, and… I still have that burning sensation that feels like my skin is on fire that has not gone away! I need it to stop!  Frustration!

 

If being physically robbed of your quality of life wasn’t enough, it takes your mental clarity, memory, and energy as well. One of the most frustrating. A symptom is called something called “ Fibro Fog”.  Fibro fog is a cognitive dysfunction, which affects your ability to think clearly, and even remember the simplest thing.   I have learned I do need a sense of humor when it comes to having fibromyalgia.  More than once my cell phone was found in the refrigerator.  If there is not humor towards yourself,  this diagnosis will try to control your life. This is part of the reason why I have not posted in literally forever. I have been trying to manage my fibro and all the horrific and painful symptoms no one can do anything about.

 

* Technically Allodynia is the experience of feeling pain from stimuli that aren’t normally painful and the result of a pain processing dysfunction in the nervous system. *  Though usually associated with migraines there is a crossover to fibromyalgia. There are three types of Allodynia:  Static allodynia is what one feels from a light touch on the skin; Dynamic allodynia happens with movement across the skin; Thermal allodynia happens in response to mild changes in the temperature.  Though usually associated with migraines there is a crossover to fibromyalgia.  This is only one of the hundred life-altering symptoms one can experience, but this is enough for one day, at least for these fingers it is.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer: No portion of this may be shared without my written permission and used as your own.

 

Reference: https://americanmigrainefoundation.org/resource-library/what-to-know-about-allodynia/

 

Infants needing touch

Mood State- 5 Feeling Good!

 

From the moment we are born, we are comforted by our mother’s warm touch, safe in her arms and feeling love for the first time.

If only… if only I had been held as a newborn would I have all the relationship issues I have today? That was the question that was burning in my brain as I woke up this morning. So much for entering the new day in a calm state of mind. Now I am hyper-focused on my birth and the lack of emotional and physical attention I had in my first few months of life most likely the cause of my trust and bonding issues I live with.

I was abandoned at birth in a Russian hospital where I spent my first four months of life, fighting to survive as a 3lb 4oz premie. I was moved to an orphanage that had one hundred children under the age of five years old with only five caretakers. About 20 of those children were infants.  Needless to say, I missed the attention and physical touch that calms the brain and develops the necessary human bond of trust. These are basic things I missed – knowing I   would be picked up when crying and fed when hungry and held with love. Apparently, and according to my therapist, it has impacted me throughout my whole life causing havoc.

Developing bonds with friends, partners, and even my parents were challenging. I tend to keep everybody at a distance,  and only share bits of important information that one would need to know to understand me. I do not attach myself and always prepare for the worst. I am always ready for my new friend to hurt me, but as a pattern, I would usually do something to cause the friendship to end before I got hurt. I have ruined and lost a few good people because of this.  When I do make a friend I question why do they want to be my friend and what do they see in me?  Can I trust them?  Would they have my back and cherish the information I share with them? I also don’t want to be a burden to them. I know I can be a lot to handle and do talk a lot and have energy when I shouldn’t, and especially annoying to some,  love deep conversations. I am overly caring at times, but also super mean and distant somedays. I know these behaviors can be worked on to an extent –  I’ve been made more aware of that.  Making friends is easy, but keeping them is the hard part. Getting the anxiety to calm down enough to realize I am worth their friendship and I am not a burden. To have them understand that if I am up at 3 or 4am, walking back and forth in the house, it is anxiety and to just let me be, or hold me if I allow. That brings me to my control anxiety. I have to always be in control…. but that will be, for another day…

With therapy and understanding friends,

 

 

 

Disclaimer: No portion of this may be shared without my written permission and used as your own.

First Time For Everything ….911

Mood State- 8 Beginning of Mania

My hands are shaking, no time to think, I just act, 1,2,3,4,5, 1,2,3,4,5, call 911!  Hello? my friend just stopped breathing!  I could hear her gasp for air then silence.  You have to send EMS NOW!  My basic medical training kicked in and I started CPR.  Two police officers were the first to show up,  followed by EMS and the Fire department. As they flooded into her house Christina’s heart started and she began to breathe again.  Christina was annoyed, had no idea what happened and just wanted everybody out of her house but me.  She said they could take her vital signs but no hospital (and no health insurance).  It was not my choice but I would stay and look after her. We relaxed, watched movies and talked all night, she started to ask me questions about what happened. I explained there were paramedics in the house because she had stopped breathing. Her response blew me away – she said it was okay, it happens.  Say what!! No that does not just happen, not to a young, healthy, women. Unknown to me at the time was that she had a history of heart issues.  The next morning we decided to get breakfast, so we casually hop on her scooter to just go a few blocks to the supermarket. Everything was going great, wind in hair, laughs, then suddenly a car hit us from behind as we turned onto the street, and sped off.  We crashed!  I was lucky.  Witnesses said I jumped off the scooter like a ninja before it hit the ground, but Christan stayed on and hit the pavement.  I quickly got to her, and about six neighbors and a passing car all came running over to us. Christina slowly tried to get up, I gave her my hand to just sit up, and let me look at the injuries. They weren’t good, but she was conscious for now. She told everybody she was fine, and we got on the scooter and drove to her house where another friend was waiting. Given everything that had happened within the last twenty-four hours, we really wanted to take her to the Emergency Room but she refused.  I made a deal that if she was not better by 9pm I’m calling 911.  The next few hours gave me some time to process everything that had happened within the last two days and focusing my energy on her was the only way I knew how to cope at that very moment.

It is 9pm and Christina is complaining of her head hurting, Chest pain, and her lower back, than just than she lays back and doesn’t respond to me. I can not wait this out, she stopped breathing the other night. so I called 911, and told them “I have a young female, not really responsive, but conscious and breathing.” They ask, drugs, no, they ask me if sure? Yes, just hurry!

Remember this is my second night without good sleep, and constant worry, my mood is changing to fully manic and I knew if I didn’t get some quality sleep soon, it would end up with us both in an emergency. Paramedics, firemen, and police all show up, Christina finally came to, but was so confused, scared, and did not understand what happened, she thought she just took a nap. After some arguments, explaining and reassurance she agreed to go to the hospital to get checked out. Relief!! So I thought! That next moment she went crazy on the paramedics, they kept asking me what drugs she did. I said over and over she did not take drugs, and either do I. I said I swear this is not an overdose, they all didn’t believe me. Once at the hospital, the drug test came back a negative, and we both said duh! This isn’t an overdose. Christina was not having it with this nurse, named her big Bertha, and kept calling her that, big Bertha got upset and decided to call security on us, for laughing and joking. Just trying to keep my friend clam here! Laughter is the best medicine; I also did not get how I was the one in the room and had to take full responsibility for Christina’s life and safety that evening. I’m freaking. That’s a lot. So this security guard truly was no help, after assessing the situation, he just smiled, and gave a little laugh to both of us, because he knew it was ridiculous the nurse felt threatened for her safety with us. We’re both tiny women. We just wanted answers, which in the end, they failed to give us. So we head home, I do my best to stay awake, to keep her up for an hour then she can go to sleep. I am not sure how long I can stay up for but my adrenaline is flowing, so I knew I could not fall into a deep sleep. expect I did, and that is what worried me, but everything turned out great. It is crazy what our mind and body can handle during stressful situations.

 

 

 

Disclaimer: No portion of this may be shared without my written permission and used as your own.

The Creativity Process

 

Taking time to be creative is so important to embrace when you are learning how to manage daily life with mental health issues.  Whether you have a Masters Degree in writing or Art or you just like to sit down and let the thoughts flow out, finding your inner voice and expressing it creatively is cathartic.   I love to paint and I love to write. The direction I go in depends on the mood of the moment (I am a rapid cycle Bipolar 1). That being said, as a result of many therapy sessions, I am getting better at being able to know where I am in the mood pyramid and plan my activities accordingly.  I also have an app on my phone that I use to take notice of my feelings and the little things that happen to me throughout the day. During the course of one day in Mania, I can experience a wide range of moods from so anxious that I am sick to my stomach too so productive I cannot keep up with my thoughts. Usually, long hours of sleep from twenty-four to forty-eight are required to reset the mood cycle. I use the emotions and feelings I have just experienced insight into how I will express myself.  It all starts with a feeling that directs me toward writing or painting for a release.  Today I will express myself through writing and gather my thoughts and piece back information I am feeling or have felt. When I put the words on paper, they are mine and agree or disagree they are still mine. I find it empowering.

 

 

 

Disclaimer: No portion of this may be shared without my written permission and used as your own.

24 Hours with anxiety​

The unexplained fear, racy heart and sweaty palms, the three daily symptoms of my anxiety and panic disorder.

The room was filled with silence my mind so stressed out I feel like my heart is going to come right out of my body, my breathing becomes labored and shallow. An anxiety attack, the best way to ruin a good day. Some days they are so bad I can’t function, the littlest things set me off, unanswered texts, a friend who is late to my house, food taking too long to cook, and the most simple of all showering. Self-care is one of the hardest, my curly hair tied up in a messy bun, unbrushed for a few days, put up to dry from my shower the day before.
I grab myself a cup of coffee, take my medication, and let Bailey play outside. As I sit there, enjoying my medical joint of the morning, I think Not today Anxiety, Not Today! As it comes to the end, I call for Bailey, and we go about and start the day. My first house task, cleaning the kitchen, I look around and imminently feel overwhelmed, and disorganized. Disorganization is one of my biggest triggers for a panic attack, so I try and make sense of the situation as fast as I can. As the kitchen gets under control, I am able to think of the next, daunting task, the worst of them all, the process is so stressful, and timing has to be just right. This task is laundry, which can take me up to a week or 10 days, to go through the whole process. I usually just found it easier to buy new clothes. That is another story. As the day goes on I am very aware of my daily limit on what I can do, this did not happen overnight, but with great help from therapy, and self-help little progress is possible.
It is not 1 pm and I am exhausted and ready for a nap, I try to fight the sleepiness, sitting outside watching my little girl play outside, while the sun shines on my pale skin. I have had a very strong change of thought and heart about being in the sun since I was a teenager, Bronzer can do wonders! As time passes I just become more and more anxious, about what. who knows. Due to my illness, I have not to be permitted to work, so I started Bipolarbree, it is more than just a blog, but a way to interact with others suffering.  I started a twitter account and Facebook accounts for all of you.

 

FaceBook: Bipolarbree1
Twitter- @Bipolarbree1

Business Inquiries Email- Bipolarbree1@gmail.com

 

 

 

Disclaimer: No portion of this may be shared without my written permission and used as your own.

The New Therapist​

Hi, I’m Bree, and traditional talk therapy is not my thing. I placed my bag down, and made myself comfortable, as my therapist said, “this isn’t therapy we are just going to talk.” If this isn’t therapy than what is it? I said nervously. I know you have been seeing our trauma therapist, and he has gotten you to release some of your pain and show any emotion. I am here for you, to talk, to help you make daily choices, and to improve your quality of life with Bi-polar. This therapy session was so different than anyone I have been to. It was different in that she did not have to pray to get information out of me, I did not hold back, even the darkest, and most painful events. I just kind of had this trust with her, and really opened up to accept help. We talked, laughed, and started to form a plan for me to start working on. As the session went on I really felt that I was the most open and honest I have ever been. Starting to form this new medical-professional relationship, was scary, but exciting. I even received her personal E-mail, If I never needed to talk, vent or just scream. I have never had any therapist, be that willing, and to go that extreme for me. I felt much more like a person, than just another appointment in their day. As the session came to an end, we invited my mom back, my mom is my best friend and biggest supporter through all of this. We told her our plan and just chatted. Leaving the office I felt relaxed, and a lot less anxious. I look forward to our next appointment. It has taken me about 5 years to find the right therapist, I always had to have some form of therapy weekly, but nothing really worked, or clicked like I felt this appointment went today. So if you are struggling to find the right therapist do not stop looking, ask your primary doctors if there is somebody they could recommend, this is how I came across my therapist, and it is awesome that both doctors work in the same office, so there will be no misinformation or delayed flies between them, which is a huge plus for me. Therapy does not have to be expensive, but make sure your doctor has had the right training in your area of help. For example, when I first came out to my family and moved back from NYC. I looked for a one who specializes in LBGT, Anxieties, PTSD and Addiction.

 

 

Disclaimer: No portion of this may be shared without my written permission and used as your own.

Finding out you have Bipolar​

The diagnosis of bipolar was some of the best news I have heard in a long time. It completely made sense to my recent actions and rapid changes in my mood. It was only when I started to get sober, while in rehab I noticed something with my moods. I would be so happy for a few days, then so depressed and just sleeping all day, which was not allowed so I would try to have my roommate look out for me, when counselors were around campus. I got caught about a week later for not socializing and just sleeping. I got caught many times after that, and it got to the point where my consular would knock on my room door, and just walk in just to make sure I wasn’t sleeping. Beyond annoyed, angry and not knowing what was going on with me, I exploded on my consular, who just kept telling me “I was an addict, that is why I was having these mood changes,” I knew that was completely wrong, and that comes to be proven correct by my amazing doctor. Dr. Matt.

Dr. Matt is unlike any medical doctor today, his unconventional medical training has led him to be the best of the best. He has obtained an undergrad in psychology and became board-certified medical psychology and psychopharmacology. Having him as my primary doctor is nothing short of a blessing and miracle.
It was appointment day, I was so nervous and shaking, I did not know what to expect, I really didn’t know what was going on with me mentally, but I was losing it, I wasn’t me anymore. Dr. Matt and I talked, I told him everything my alcohol use, my traumas, he met my mom and girlfriend. The family is very important when dealing with and recovering from a mental illness. After talking for while he decided to give me a personality test, this took about 90 mins and was about 300 questions long. I was skeptical about this test, what could it tell me that I haven’t already been told. A few days later the results were in Bi-polar type 1. Shocked, Happy, and relieve, I was on the way to getting better, but not before it gets worse, and depression kicks in. The next few months, were dark and strange, only having the energy to sleep, and sleep and sleep. Sleep seemed to be my safe place

The first thirty days of my diagnosis, and on my new medications, an anti-anxiety, depression, and a mood stabilizer, nothing short of crazy. I was not yet in tune with my body, one manic day, I got the dumb idea to start drinking as I usually do then, All of a sudden  I wanted to go shopping since I lived five mins from a great outlet mall. This time was different, I got arrested for shoplifting, and even ran from the cops, something I couldn’t even think of doing today. Waiting for these medications to become built up in my system, was too long to keep me safe. I started to think being Bi-polar was going to lead me to a life of crime, something I was far from use too. As time went on, the medications started to work. My mind became clearer, and my heart didn’t crave as much thrill, positive or negative as it did before. I started to see the benefits of having bipolar, such as having endless creative energy.
To this day I have learned and practiced listening to my body, to know when I have had enough mentally and physically. To know when all I need to do is sleep, to understand when I can not handle being around other people, including my best friends, and parents.

To this day, I am seen by him monthly for medical check up’s an in-depth, conversations talk about my moods and overall well being. He has put me in weekly therapy, and monthly trauma therapy. The main reason why I love having Dr. Matt is that he doesn’t believe in just trying all different medication combinations, constantly switching dosages, and so on. He believes in lifestyle changes, a schedule, art therapy, and daily exercise.

For those with a mental illness, I can not stress enough how important it is to get help, in any form speak up, this is not something we can be silent about. Going to a weekly Bipolar group has also helped me greatly, it allows me to hear other people’s struggles, and learn from and support them. Take baby steps, face each challenge as it presents itself, and do not let feelings build up.

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer: No portion of this may be shared without my written permission and used as your own.

The Mental Health Tag.. About me Q&A

the-mental-health-tag
This is a little fun Q&A to allow you to get to know me better,
Q) When were you diagnosed, and what lead up to it 

A) I was first diagnosed with General Anxiety disorder back in 2007, then things go more serious, in 2012-20-14. I started to self-medicate with alcohol and prescription drugs.  In 2016 I was hospitalized and put in rehab for alcoholism and or alcohol abuse. From rehab, I saw a trauma therapist and Board Certified Medical Psychologist Psychopharmacologist who diagnosed me with PTSD, and Bipolar1 disorder, along with   Anxiety, and OCD.

Q)  What Therapy and medications have you tried, and have any of them worked?
  A)  I have tried, and still attend many forms of therapy, including group, trauma, weekly therapy sessions. I am on an anti- psychotic antidepressant, both are working great, but only in conjunction with therapy, CBT, Trauma, and Rapid Resolution Therapy. RRT has worked the best for me, and I have seen the most progress with myself going for RRT.
Q)  Do my Family and Friends know about my mental illness and addictions.
 A) Of course, my family knows, mental illness cannot be fought alone, or talked about enough. My parents and longtime partner are both heavily involved with my well-being, I could not survive each day without them.
Q) Does it affect your daily life and work?
 A) My bipolar and anxiety disorder affect my life in ways I not have imagined but turned out to be a blessing in disguise.  I now focus my energy on my blog and my wellness.
Q) What makes me feel calm? 
 A) To feel calm I have always had this very soft object in my hand to play with, and take my attention away from the stressor.  I will be speaking about this in a post, and have it being offered to you all.
Q) What makes me smile?
 A)  There are so many things that make me smile, but one thing for sure to make me smile is my puppy Bailey and Dog Quincy.
Q) What advice could I give others suffering?
  A)  I would say speak up, this is not something we can be silent about, we already suffer enough because we have a disorder of our minds, that is not apparent on the outside, most of the time.
 Please Share, and Answer these questions yourself, then tag yourself. xoxo

 

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer: No portion of this may be shared without my written permission and used as your own.

Rapid Resolution Therapy​.

Make it stop, does it ever take a break, that little voice that never shut-up in my head. Replaying and becoming stuck on every real, and futuristic situation you have ever faced. RRT is a form of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy. This therapy is so awesome that you do not have to relive, or even recall details of the traumatic event.  It is called a bottom-up process and just focuses on relocating and detaching the physical pain from mental pain.
 I was introduced to Rapid Resolution Therapy during my stay in a local rehab felicity. During this time all of the horrible events came rushing back, with having nothing to quiet them down. The counselors were not interested in my past, or what even lead up to alcohol abuse, they just wanted to make my life drug free.  Being drug-free was just a holding place for me, I knew that if these traumas and anxieties were not treated, my life would be full of alcohol abuse, destruction, and no real relationships or future.
 The room was silent, filled with patients and concerned loved ones. A tall, nicely dressed gentleman walked into the room and introduced himself. “ Hi, I’m Dr. Q, A trauma therapist, and I am here today to talk about trauma and anxieties related to drug addiction.”  I was hooked and latched onto every word he said. After the lecture was over, I promptly went up to him and introduced myself as his newest patient. I am sure he gets this all the time, but there was a look of seriousness and desperation in my eyes.  He talked with me briefly and handed me his card, which I put in a safe place, so I could call my mom later, and tell her all about this treatment I really wanted to look into.
 That evening when everything has settled down from that day, I made a call to my mom, and she called and made me an appointment. Patients in rehab get top priority, so I was able to get in that following week.  The week leading up to that day was torturous, with many restless nights, sleepy days with panic and fear just pouring out of me.  My fellow rehabbers helped me through each situation the best they could, mainly just listening.
Appointment day arrived, filled with joy, anxieties, and curiosity my mom pulled up to the treatment center, and signed me out for the day. In the first session with Dr. Q all  I knew was that it was videotaped, and it lasted up to 5 hours, but no shorter than 2.5.
 The tape started, Dr. Q started asking me questions.
“ So Bree, what pleasure do I have of treating with you?
   “ I can not get my mind to shut up, I am having, and have had these vivid flashbacks. I am unable to fully put my head underwater, whether it is in a pool, or shower, in fear it brings back such hard emotions, and physical pain.”
“ My sleep is anything but restless, although I do not know what is going on, I thrash, kick, yell,  and scream, most of the time it is for help, and or fear, of what is going on within my subconscious mind.”
“ I always feel somebody is trying to harm me, I have kept a huge secret my whole life, “ That I was a victim of a sexual assault at the age of 13 and again at 23.”
“ I also want to understand why I choose alcohol as my go-to, and that when I do drink, 9 out of 10 times it would trigger horrible, vivid and real flashbacks, to the point where I am unable to move from fear.”
“ I shower at least 4 times a day, but never felt clean, and or even relaxed.” This started in early childhood, I would say around age 4.”
“ I worry and stress about literally everything, in my control and not in my control, but should be. Control gives me the power that was taken away from me at such a young age.” There becomes a point in which I want to control so bad, that I start to gain control in other ways, such a not eating, working out, art, and the worst but most often drinking.”
“ I have no cried actual tears since childhood, crying was embedded in me that it was a sign of weakness, and not allowed.”  NOTE My parents have never told me crying was bad, or a sign of weakness, we think one of my babysitters might of.”
 After expressing all of this he said to me “ What would a life without all this pain look like to me”.
  This was something so unimaginable to me, I just teared up, bit my lip hard and said wonderful!  He then asked me to pick an object that represents something meaningful and strong to me. My choice  The Lotus Flower, so from this point on I am to imagine the Lotus Flower, as my end result. To be unharmed by all that is around me, and to flourish beautifully even though I have been to the depths of darkness and back.
 As the season contained I grew more and more skeptical about RRT, It did not feel like anything was going on expect a series of the same questions asked different ways. Then once my guard was completely down he asked me to close my eyes and imagine myself in a body of water. “ I imminently opened my eyes, and said no way!”  He told me he would be here the whole time, and he just needed that panic, and fear to happen so he could get my brain back on track.
So I closed my eyes once again, gripping the pillow tight I imagined myself in a body of water.” I felt my heart starting to beat uncontrollably, my hands became shaky and sweating, and my breathing became labored. He had me right where he needed me.  Just as I was about to freak out he had me think of the lotus flower, take a deep breath and open my eyes.
 I looked around the room with blurred vision,  I did not know what just happened. It took all of few moments to get paninked, terrified and real emotion out of me. The worst part is over. Having and showing these raw emotions was a golden opportunity for both myself and Dr.Q. He now broke down the event, making me close my eyes again at each stressful moment and to focus on my Lotus Flower, and his voice. As the hours passed by I became more and more tired.
  The Break
We took a nice lunch break and went out to get food. As the conversation started, doing our best to not talk about the session but more about my family, how they took to me being a lesbian, my girlfriend who I see as my wife one day.  It felt so great to talk with a professional, as an adult and for them not to just jump to labeling me this or that. He wanted to make sure that coming out wasn’t a traumatizing or troubling situation, which he discovered that it had been. Setting that aside for our next visit, we already had so much to cover, and we both knew it couldn’t be completed by today. As lunch finished up we headed back to his office, and into the room, turning on the camera as we walked in.
 It took Dr. Q a little bit to get me back into the mind frame where he needed me. In this part of the session, he wanted to focus on detaching my physical response to the troubling event, so that when  I think of the event, those physiological responses won’t happen.  Then as he was talking to me, the response happened tears started to fill my eyes, and my body started to shake a little, the moment he saw this he asked me what was going through my mind, and for me to shut my eyes and think of that Lotus flower, I dug my nails deep into my thighs, He imminently asked me to open my eyes, and to stop. Something deeper was going on, he wanted to know what.  He kept asking me “ What just happened.”, “ What made you grip so tightly to,” I told him I was too scared to move forward, and that I really wanted to be done for the day. As we closed the session, he told me that he was looking forward to helping me more, and to call him if I am having any problems.
 Back to rehab
As I make my way back to the rehab felicity I notice that my body is so weak, and my mind can’t even form a sentence.  I see a group of my friends waiting to greet me by a door, all asking questions about my sessions. Seeing Dr.Q was a luxury, one that many rehabbers didn’t have, my heart breaks for them, but this is my time to just focus on me, and because I am privileged I am able to seek the best care possible.  The advice I gave everybody, who would be attending a  Dr. Q session, is to be open, and expect to be talked raw by the end of it, and have really no idea of what or how you all of a sudden feel lighter but mentally drained. Dr. Q is still in my treatment plan today, we meet every 2-3 weeks after I graduated rehab. Today I only see him every other month, unless a crisis strikes me. He says my progress is outstanding, but he wants me in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy two to three times a week.
  Out of rehab and to this day
 I have been out of rehab for over two years now,  and see great improvement even with setbacks. Today I am able to put my whole face underwater, and shower without any triggers for flashbacks, or self-harm.  My alcohol abuse is limited to a few days to a week at a time. I know that sounds like a lot, but when this happens we know it is time for me to go for RRT again.  It is so important for me to always stay in check with my mind, body, and to listen to that noise in my head, whether it is conscious or subconscious.  My sleep is still restless, and many nights are spent awake and or waking up in a complete panic, and can not go back to sleep for hours, but I am happy to say that my last session got my drinking under control, and we had a breakthrough with me opening up and talking about what was really hurting me even if it was so painful to face, I would come out stronger overall.  Getting help in any form of therapy is a great idea, there is help within every budget, and or insurance plan. Wellness does not happen overnight, but with one foot forward and just the hint of willingness you can be on the path to peace and recovery.
Dr. Quintal’s Website

Disclaimer: No portion of this may be shared without my written permission and used as your own.

Admission of Help

Asking for help can be one of the bravest and best things we can do to save our lives. The disease of addiction is not a solo problem, nor does it happen overnight. My unknown addiction started at a very young age when I was diagnosed with ADHD and put on Ritalin medication at age five.  Even at that young age, I realized how different the medication made me feel.  I liked this feeling better, it made me less sensitive to the world around me and I was able to make friends and be in social situations for a much longer time.  As I grew older, I started to understand how the medication actually worked.  By reducing sensory overload it allowed me to focus on just one or two tasks through to completion.  I fell in love with the feeling of not feeling in addition to being able to keep my weight under 100lbs and knowing I could achieve anything without being tired. This went on through my college years from 2009-2012.

 

THE CHANGE
The darkest memories I have of coming home were the many nights iv spent in my room, with a bottle or two and some stimulants. These nights were dark, and long, filled with shame and frustration. it was just a few months after I came out to my family, that I was a lesbian, life was awkward, I needed mental peace, and out of this strong addition. So I got up the courage, to make a friend online and ask for help. I know asking a stranger, but it was the only way to get help, without being judged, or questioned. She was a guardian angel, I felt. So we arranged to meet at my house so she could get me these detox and withdrawal medication. The day she showed up at my house, I got so nervous, i had to tell my mom, about my addiction, and why I was getting medication from a stranger.  Fear and sadness were the only emotions in the room, I was looking down at the floor as tears flowed down my face. I was excited to kill this demon inside me. It took me about 4months to be completely okay without the drugs, but I was drinking massive amounts of red bull, just to feel ok, since the drugs were gone, and I was so happy to start to be free from the demon.

Telling my parents about my addiction, took more courage than coming out. I knew they would blame themselves, especially my mom. None of this was their fault, nor mine really. It got to the point where the only time I used the bathroom, was to do my drug of choice. I started to grow more ashamed with myself,  and was so broken, and confused on how to get unaddicted.  I was never told about the N/A program and kept it a secret that I had a problem, to this day I am 4+ years clean of prescription stimulants. I am ok with being over 100lbs, but also it is my the first time in my life that I am weighted every month, so my weight is closely monitored and each time I am not completely stressed out.

 

 

Disclaimer: No portion of this may be shared without my written permission and used as your own.