Wednesday, 25 November 2009

up and down

So much for "blogging even when you're doing well" - I haven't been writing anything, good or bad. I can't believe how long it's been, time really does fly sometimes.

I've been very up and down since the beginning of September when I last wrote. My course has generally been going well, although I did have several points where I really struggled with myself wondering whether this was really what I wanted to be doing. Although I say that, really I was struggling with whether I COULD do it, whether I was good enough. Of course I never think I'm good enough, at anything. Towards the end of my first term of lectures things were really starting to slip - I wasn't turning up to a lot of my lectures, and on my course if attendance drops below a certain level you can be kicked off. So that really wasn't clever. I'm now a week and a half into my first work placement, and it's only now that things have finally clicked into place. It sounds silly, but I'm really in love with my job and with occupational therapy. For the first time in my life I really have the feeling of "yes, this is what I'm meant to do." I've finally found something where I feel like I'm making a difference and doing something important. And I'm ALMOST beginning to feel like I might even be good at it - although there's big emphasis on the "almost" since of course I never really feel like I'm that good at anything.

I just can't seem to deal with failure and criticism at all. I know I'm better than I was, but if I do something wrong I still beat myself up over it. I can't stand being new to something and not being perfect straight away. My supervisor told me I'm doing a good job, but I still can't quite believe it. But I'm loving what I'm doing so much at the moment that the fear and anxiety isn't completely overwhelming.

Speaking of fear, I read a really good tip the other day - next time you feel anxiety or fear building up in you, just focus on the physical site of it (for me it's in my chest). It's amazing, just focusing on the feeling makes it disappear completely - so simple and there seems to be no logic to it, but it works!

Anyway, after my last blog about not wanting to be in a relationship for a while and wanting to learn to be on my own, I've maintained that. I've been single for about 3 months now and I really have no desire to be in a relationship any time soon. I guess partly it's due to cynicism - I've realised I don't actually know that many couples who are genuinely good together and are genuinely happy. Real love seems so rare. I do believe it exists, but I don't believe it really happens to girls like me. I don't think I'm ever going to find someone who can put up with all my craziness and love me for who I am. So I'm just not interested in all that right now - all relationships seem to do is make me depressed and insecure, I'd much rather be on my own and preserve my mental stability!

Although I have no desire for a romantic partner at the moment, I am incredibly lonely sometimes. I've realised I have no real, close friends anymore. I have people I socialise with, but no one I can really talk to about anything. My best friend is in ED treatment in South Africa and is dealing with enough of her own shit at the moment. As for my other best friend...well, something has changed. I'm not sure what, I just think maybe she's not the person she used to be. She's become really judgemental and harsh, and I just don't feel comfortable opening up to her anymore. So because of that, sometimes the loneliness gets really overwhelming. I've realised I'm really withdrawing from people emotionally - I just don't open up to anyone anymore. I don't depend on anyone emotionally. And for now that's "safe" for me, it means I don't get hurt and sink back into the horrible depression I was in before. But I think it's taking its toll in the long run.

Does anyone have any experience/understanding of dysthymia? I came across the term the other day, and I really think that's what I have. I've had this constant underlying depression for as long as I can remember, at least since I was 11 or 12. Possibly when I was even younger, but I can't remember back that far. Most of the time (like now) it's bearable and I can function just about, but every now and then it'll flare up into major depression. No matter what, it never really goes away. I think suddenly doing a job I love and getting that burst of happiness from it has made me realise that even when things are "OK" I never really know what it's like to be happy.

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