It’s Been Too Long

Ok guys… sorry for not posting in a while… here’s the update…

I went to the nutritionist twice so far. Today is supposed to be my third visit and I’m not really sure what the benefit is of having her on board. I don’t thinks it’s a bad thing to have her on my team, but I’m just not certain of the benefits she’s supposed to be able to provide–other than reassurance that I’m on a good path.

I went to the psychologist who is supposed to be doing EMDR with me, and the first visit went ok I believe. We talked about my past traumatic experiences and touched on the presenting issues. He said that next time I come in we will install a safe place. I am actually looking forward to doing this step because it can also help lessen the brunt of my anxiety attacks outside of the EMDR experience. He will be back in the office on April 24, 2017… so I have a little ways to go till that appointment, but I am still very much excited about it.

My regular therapist I have seen twice and both visits have gone well. I was scheduled to see him today, however he called me and said that he was feeling ill and asked if we could reschedule for the same day and time next week. Of course, I agreed because I know what’s it’s like to feel ill.

I am continuing with group sessions at te local behavioral health hospital and that seems to be working in its own ways and VERY slowly. But still–baby steps are still steps. I have dropped down to the IOP program instead of the PHP program so I now attend 3 days a week instead of 5. Which is both a good and bad thing in my mind. Good because it means they can see that I am making progress, but bad because I just don’t feel like I’m ready for the reduced caseload yet. Parts of me still want to go every day even though parts of me are excited to be on the less intense track.

Overall, things are going well, and I am taking the little unexpected hiccups in stride. I haven’t blown anything out of proportion yet and I’ve managed with each new small obstacle. I hope this is a continuing trend and I pray for no backsliding.

GOOD VIBES ONLY Y’ALL!!!

See y’all around soon🎯

#EndTheStigma

#YouAreNotAlone

#TeamUndone

Working to #UndoTheStigma associated with mental illness🎯

Therapy Is Like High School??!?

So… yesterday I went to an individual therapist for the first time in YEARS, and guess what? I got homework!!! Just like in high school… Guess what else. Go on guess. I’m waiting…………………..

My therapist said to me, “we are going to talk about things when you come in here… Yes I have a license, but as far as I’m concerned we are just 2 people talking through some things, going to figure some shit out.” Tell me that doesn’t sound like your friends from high school. So I’m thinking how cool is this?! Wayyyy cool! I know he isn’t my ‘friend’ but it’s cool that he sort of sets the vibe that way…makes it wayyyy easier to talk to him. And he doesn’t think I’m a lost cause. He said on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the worst that me and all of my problems combined are a 4 maybe a 5!! That’s good news. VERY good news to my ears.

As some of you know, I was hitting brick wall after brick wall with trying to find someone to accept me for therapy, partially due to crummy insurance, but also due to the fact that the during 2 weeks I’ve been in group I’ve discovered that there is this intricately woven web of issues that I need to resolve and move forward from. It’s like every therapist I called just didn’t want to take te time to help me with figuring out all my junk because as most of you know, what happens? You go in with one or two concerns and by the time you’ve gotten through a few sessions, you’ve discovered with your therapist that you really have like 10 things to work on… so I think they were looking at me with 10 things as the starting number and that they new we would discover more things as we worked together and they just didn’t feel like dealing with me. When it all started I was getting sort of hopeless because I felt like no one would ever accept me… Now I feel like I am exactly where I am meant to be–on the right road with a kindred spirit.

So….. Back to this homework assignment…..

ASSIGNMENT #1

I am supposed to cut the words ‘should’ ‘must’ and ‘need’ out of my vocabulary. Those words apparently denote shame and/or unwanted obligations. I am to replace those words with ‘wish’ and ‘want.’


You mean to tell me that something so simple could make drastic improvements to my mood, mental state, and overall well-being??


I’m cool with that! 🙂 It’s going to take a little getting used to because it’s just habit for me to say things like “I should have grabbed an extra can of veggies from the store.” Now I’ve got to focus on what I’m saying and turn that into “I wish I would have thought to get an extra can of veggies.” Simple enough…just have to focus…

Now, for the kicker…

ASSIGNMENT #2

My therapist wants me to think about, and write out I’m guessing, what I want my life to both look AND feel like in 1 and in 5 years. Sounds simple enough… I can set goals for myself, right?? Of course I can! The part I feel I may struggle with is the ‘feel’ part. I get the sense he isn’t going to approve of me saying something like “I want it to feel like putting on my favorite pair of blue jeans,” or “I want it to feel cozy and snuggly like getting tucked into bed as a child,” or “I want it to feel like sunbathing on a beach in Maui, with my toes in the water, and a cold soda in a coconut with a little umbrella.”

While those all sound like amazing descriptions… They are not actual ‘feelings.’ Now we are getting to the sticky part…

UNFAMILIAR TERRITORY ALERT!!!

I’m not sure how to identify my feelings right now, much less what I want them to be in the future. Anxiety free-sounds great, happy-well who actually wants to be miserable(the answer here is no one), stable-not sure I know anyone who actual IS stable but most of us put on a good show about how stable we are…

So… I actually have to do a little research here and figure out what feelings I currently have because I know I don’t like whatever ‘this’ is that’s been going on with me. Then, I have to figure out the opposites of my current feelings so I know what I hope for the future to feel like for me.

I will keep you guys informed of my progress…

Wish me luck, I’m going to need it!!! 🙂
~Kat🎯

Ps-feel free to contact me with questions or suggestions. I’d love hearing what you think of my ramblings 🙂

Nutritionist

So…today I saw the nutritionist for the first time. I think it went well. I talked her ears off and gave her more information about me than I think she wanted or needed. But overall, another #Win…

She said that to start to regain my weight she is estimating that I need to eat about 1400 calories a day. She said bread and chicken were fine for now to start with as long as I kept eating the lunch trays at the PHP program. AND she didn’t take away my Dr. Pepper… any calories are good calories at this point. She suggested adding juices for nutrient reasons and I’m going to work on that too.

She also said that our goal of gaining 5 pounds in 2 weeks is a little unrealistic and that she will talkto the nurse at the PHP and set some more realistic goals as milestones to keep me out of the Residential Facility–that I do NOT want to go to… so that’s another #Win.

On the scale in the nutritionist’s office I weighed 105. Which I know everyone’s scales will vary a little–but that’s still more than I’ve weighed in the past 2 times I’ve been on a scale. So again, another #Win.

Overall things are looking up. I’m still phobic about eating at night, and certain foods are completely out of the question. But I know that the times and the items I do eat when I eat have been giving me less anxiety than a week ago. Today I actually ate 2 meals as opposed to just snacks in the morning. And, when I ate both breakfast and lunch today I had maybe 1 or 2 anxiety driven thoughts just before or during the eating–but they subsided rather quickly and I was able to finish my meal and move on with my day with minimal anxiety/phobia ideas.

Today has been a day of #Wins all the way around!!! 🙂

Thank You God and thank You Jesus!

~Kat

Hope

Below is the link to one of my playlists on Spotify. I fell asleep listening to these songs last night and woke up still listening to them this morning. As I’m writing, I am once again listening to this playlist. I have found that these songs do in fact give me hope, as well as boosting my feelings of inner strength. God is AMAZING.

I will work on posting each of the song titles and artists individually in my next post so that those of you who do not have or are not interested in downloading Spotify but are interested in implementing some or all of these songs in your own self-help techniques can do so.
~Kat

#Wins

Last night started a series of #wins for me…

I went home for the first time in 6 days…yeah, you read that right-6 days sleeping in my truck due to my anxiety… I made it through the night at home with minimal anxiety and minimal desire to rush out the door to the closest hospital.
I hung around while dinner was being cooked instead of isolating myself. I fell asleep before it was finished, but I was there in the kitchen during about half of the cooking.
I got 11 hours of sleep last night.
I woke up this morning and actually brought a plate of the food that was cooked last night with me to my outpatient PHP class today.
I actually ate some of the food that was cooked at home while I was at group today.
I also ate the entire styrofoam box portion of the meal they serve us at lunch during group. Didn’t touch the salad or cookies.
I am bringing home 2 rolls from te lunch trays and my goals are:

1) eat at least one of the rolls at home but try for both of them.

2) stay home after I eat the roll(s) and don’t go sit in the hospital parking lot.
I only had 2 ARFID/anxiety related/fueled thoughts while eating today.
Instead of calling my mom for reassurance because I was freaking out after eating, I called to give her a progress report and let w know about all of my wins and the fact that I had eaten 2 actual meals today and wasn’t freaking out.
I have my first private therapy session in about 1 hour.
I weigh 104 pounds today. Which is better than 2 days ago. I have 2 weeks to gain 5 pounds. If I don’t gain 5 pounds I will have to go to a residential eating disorder treatment facility–which the idea of, terrifies me. If I do gain the 5 pounds, I get to stay in my current treatment program. I am DETERMINED to win this battle. 
🎼This won’t kill me I won’t let it

“Black & Blue”  by Sick Puppies
I’d say this is all considered improvement and success. 

#Wins #determined #endthestigma #youarenotalone #Successes #BabySteps

~Kat

Periwinkle & Teal

There is so much STIGMA attached to mental illness. Most people don’t understand that mental illness is NOT a choice.
My name is Kat. I’m here to tell you that if it were a choice, I would NOT be suffering right now. No one wakes up and says to themselves “hey you gorgeous hunk of human, let’s be an emotional wreck today and wreak havoc on ourselves because that’s going to make everything all rainbows and cupcakes today.” No. That doesn’t happen. Quite the contrary actually. We wake up and say things like, “it’s a beautiful day today, let’s spend some time soaking up the sun and enjoying life,” “I think pancakes and bacon sound wonderful for breakfast,” or even “oh my goodness I overslept and I’ve got a million things to get done today, better get a move on it.”

And then somewhere there’s a disconnect and our brains get all wonky on us and turn normal everyday routines like eating or running to the grocery store into insurmountable mountains.
“I can’t eat that because I’m going to be allergic to it, my throat is going to close up and I’m going to die.”

“There’s too many people at the store and they’re all going to look at me, or someone may even touch me on accident.”

“It’s work traffic time right now, I can’t go anywhere because I’ll be gridlocked in on the highway and if I start having a panic attack I won’t be able to get to the hospital or the ambulance won’t be able to get to me in time and I’ll die.”

These are examples of thoughts someone with an eating disorder such as ARFID, or an anxiety disorder such as agoraphobia, or even a disorder such as OCD might have. To the outsider, and even half the time–to ourself–these all sound ridiculously irrational. But still, these thoughts impair our actions. They control what we are and are not comfortably able to do.

Teal is the awareness ribbon color for anxiety/panic disorders and OCD (among other medical/psychological ailmaents); Periwinkle is the awareness ribbon color for eating disorders (and again, other medical and psychological ailments).

It is my hope to discuss my own journey and battle with these diseases as well as be able to provide some information to those who say “it’s all in your head just get over it” through my ramblings here on WordPress. You wouldn’t tell an epileptic to just stop having a seizure, or for an Alzheimer’s patient to just snap out of it and comeback to the present day and time. Why do people feel that it’s ok to tell a person with anxiety that it’s all in their head and there’s nothing wrong, or to tell a depressed person just be happy, or tell someone with an eating disorder to just eat because there’s nothing wrong with the food or they are too skinny??? Stop judging, stop trying to fix what you don’t understand, and start asking questions to gain a better understanding if you want to try and help. Don’t assume just because you don’t deal with it or have never experienced it, that it isn’t a very real war for the individual who is suffering.

I have some things I need to work out in my own mind, but I’m still very much a human being in need of compassion, friendships, family members, and a treatment that works together to help me find and rescue ME, because I know I’m still in there somewhere…I just need a little help.

~Kat

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