Sunday, April 14, 2013

Ok let me try this again.....

I wrote a post and it felt like a big whine and disrespectful to my girl's privacy who is still trying, despite lots of slips, so I took it down.

My girl continues to fight her demons and I give her credit for that. She has not given up. It actually makes it all the more poignant, to see someone want to change but be so trapped. There are no rationalizations coming from her anymore....it is what it is and its awful.

At my NAMI class the other night, they talked about self care and we broke into groups to discuss the effects of our kids mental illness on our lives.

The questions were:

What are the hardest aspects of living with mental illness in your family?
How has it affected your life?
What effect has it had on other family members?

What I found were we all had similar feelings....disappointment, grief of what would not be, and feelings of isolation and holding it all together. Like Alanon, NAMI has provided me with that same feeling of "I am not the only one." We talked about meeting once a month once the class is over to stay in touch and see how each other is doing. We created a phone list. I am hoping that we actually do it...that we really do stay in touch.

I mentioned in my deleted post that my teacher asked me if I would consider going through the training to become a teacher of the class. Maybe. I am fighting my own depression right now. Sometimes helping others helps us though....I will think about it. There are tragedies in that room....a young son who was an expert rower, recruited by a prestigious state university to be on their rowing team, only to crack under the pressure and come home delusional with a diagnoses of schizophrenia. A beautiful daughter in law school who had to drop out due to the onset of her mental health issues....later to be diagnosed with schizo-affective disorder. I cry when I hear their stories, they break my heart....somehow I think you can't be the parent-teacher and cry at the same time. lol

On a lighter note.....I was looking online at our health records and they had a page called "ongoing health conditions." I was reading about my girl's ongoing health conditions and then I thought I would look and see if they had any listed for me. I went over to my page and there, in big black capital letters, in all their glory, was the word, "OBESITY." I literally gasped out loud! It was added in 2005 and they haven't seen me since I lost my weight.....I better hurry and get in there before I gain it all back! And for the record, I would rather be called "fat lady" or "two ton Tilly" than "obese." That is such a gross word. And the term "Morbid obesity." Or ice cream called "Skinny Cow." Ugh.....who thinks this stuff up?!

Annette



7 comments:

Syd said...

I am glad that today is better for you. I think more and more people are having problems with mental illness. I wonder if it is related to stress changing physiology.

Anna said...

I think it is perfectly ok for the teacher to cry. I am glad your girl is still trying.

madyson007 said...

I can understand why your teacher asked you to go through training. You are special...you "teach" through this blog and I can testify to that. I have read your blog and walked away with great information but what I like the most is the feeling I get from reading your blog. Like an old friend who knows just what to say and how to share and just make things better or relevant or important...I really could go on. I guess...you make me feel and that is a big deal when I am feeling numb.

Barbara said...

I think I went through the same course through NAMI - is it Family to Family or something like that? It was excellent and I learned so much....only to find out in the end that Keven is not mentally ill. Once he stopped using and stopped taking his meds, he was "fine". He definitely has some quirks and anxiety, but nothing too serious.

You would make a good teacher, but I agree, you need to take care you YOU first.

Signe said...

Teach the class! That's my vote, anyway. I have learned more from actual teaching than I have from just reading. It would be a good experience for you. I, too, would like to know who determines the descriptions used in health care. Even more, I'd like to know who makes the rules and determines the one-size-fits-all charts.

Annette said...

Syd, look at that wonderful picture of you up there!
Barbara, I have no doubt that's true about the mental illness for the most part being drug induced....however, I do know that my girl changed right around 13 in some very dark ways. For today she has an official dx of major depression and generalized anxiety disorder and by all indications those are alive and well in her life. If she can ever get completely off of all drugs, then I would imagine that a lot of those issues would improve. Its getting there that is the problem, as you know. So for today, we deal with what we have...a depressed, anxiety ridden, drug addicted beautiful young woman.

Sober Mommy said...

Aww Annette you are always in my thoughts. I havent told you this but you remind me SO much of my Aunt. You even look a whole lot like her (It's Linda on facebook in case you are wondering whom I am referring to) :)

Anyways, your posts remind me so much of her. My cousin was diagnosed with Bipolar, Schitzophrenia (spelling?), Manic Disorder, etc about 10yrs ago now. Prior to that she was just known as the "drugged up one" in the family.

My cousin still uses (in fact recently my father caught her using at a local charity he ran into them at). Sometimes my Aunt is in denial, other times she is not. But, the struggle I have watched her go thru is hard to see.

Linda is also a survivor of domestic violence. She quit her full time, good job many years ago to work at local non profit shelters for battered women. She found it was her calling! That is her world now and it helps her, help herself. :)

So, you never know, this could be what you are seeking in life? Who knows! All you can is follow your heart. I have watched my Aunt go from a very lonely woman to being filled with joy as much as she can. Helping women leave abusive households and get off of drugs is way worth more then a nice paycheck to her.