Read This When You Feel Bad...A Letter To Yourself

Dear Kat,

It can be better to this. This letter to yourself is a reminder of that.

At the moment you are possibly self harming regularly and even have thoughts of suicide on your mind and are thinking of ways in which you can complete the task. But, it is not always like this and it can be better.

G, told you to write down something so that when you are on a low you can read something and hopefully it may help. It's worth trying isn't it?

So, at the moment things are ok for me. Yes, the thoughts are still there but, I am managing them.

Here are some tips of what you can do if you are not doing to well. It may seem like common sense, you may already be doing them, perhaps even feeling that they aren't doing anything to help you. But in the long run they do.

So, the first thing I would say is look at your sleep. Sleep is essential to you and when you are not getting enough or good enough quality then you struggle. I am not sure if the sleep is a sign you are not doing well or if the sleep then leads to you struggling. So, if you are not sleeping, don't just put up with it, go to your GP and get some sleeping tablets. I know you don't like taking them, but after a few nights decent sleep you do start to feel better and more able to manage how you are feeling. In the last episode you weren't sleeping, perhaps only getting a couple of hours a night. But, after going to the doctor and getting some sleeping pills and taking those for a few nights you did feel quite a bit better and more able to deal with the thoughts and feelings and not act on any of the urges you were having.

A second thing. Carry on seeing your friends and family. Don't isolate yourself. Most of your friends will be happy just for you to sit there and not really do a lot. But making sure you see them means it keeps those friendships strong and also they may be able to help you by making you feel better. You may miss out on things with them, and miss out on being able to do big things with them. Last time, you felt like isolating, but you did go over. And if you hadn't, you wouldn't have been going on a holiday of a life time with them.

The third thing. Stay active. Get fresh air and go for walks. Hammer it at the gym and spin classes. You do really enjoy them and the feeling you have after you have done it. It is also a good chance to lose yourself in music and focus on something else for a couple of hours. Also, it will help with the weight loss. You feel shit when you gain weight. So, keep up with the exercise and it will help you to continue to lose weight and not adding to those awful feelings of being a failure if you gain. One the same kind of note. Eat well. Again similar reasons as above. But also filling up with sweet crap and not eating properly makes you feel bad. Notice how much better you have been doing since you have been losing the weight? Keep it up. Don't feel like giving up on it, as come weigh day, you will feel worse if you give up on it, don't exercise and don't eat well.

It's all about giving yourself a chance. OK, one of these things on their own isn't going to miraculously make you feel better. But carry on to do all of them and it will help a little. Remember there is no magic cure. But, you can help your self.

Remember you have people you can talk to. I don't know how much longer you are going to be under services for. But at the moment you have a team behind you. You have G, who at times does piss you off, but you do like him and he has helped you a lot. I don't think you would be where you are now if you hadn't have had his input. Listen to him. As much as you hate to admit it, he is usually right. So, do what he tells you to do and listen to him. You also have the option to call the home treatment team. I can't really say much about them at the moment as you have only just moved over to the new team and things are going to work differently. But remember, you wrote that care plan with your CPN, so if you do need to call the person you speak to will have that to refer to and will hopefully be able to help you out. Ask for a home visit if you need one. Not sure why they work or are helpful, but they are. If it's just that you have to be accountable to someone, someone who knows you are having all these thoughts and will be expecting you to open the door to them at a certain time. Someone who will know that if you don't answer something is wrong. So because of this you are less likely to act on any of the serious urges because you will be found out.

Give your self something to look forward to. I'm not saying book a holiday every low period you have. But perhaps book a ticket to a show, drive to the coast for the day, plan something with friends such as going for dinner or a walk. Even plan a night in pampering yourself. Get face packs, deep conditioning treatment for your hair and some candles and get into the bath with some of your favourite music on. Do nice things for yourself. Be kind to yourself.

An important thing to remember is avoid alcohol. You have been doing so much better since you have not been drinking as much. You can't handle alcohol any more and you are having 2 days of physical hang over and then a week or so after of feeling lower and struggle more. If you drink you are more likely to act on impulse and perhaps do something you may regret after. Or even kill yourself if you don't really mean to. Think back to March/April 2013 and how you nearly died. How awful the experience was. Waking up and being on a ventilator and them removing it while you are awake. The not being able to breathe and them forcing a mask on to your face to force air in to you. The physical effects of it like the pain you had in your neck on shoulder that left you in tears every morning for a good few weeks after, the painful physio you had to have, how you lost your voice and even 8 months after it is still not back to normal and you are undergoing treatment for that.

Remember how it all affected your relationships with your family. What it put them through. How many times have you tried to kill yourself now? Too many to count and it's not worked has it. So, the chances of you going through something like that again if you do anything are quite high. So don't do it. You have said before, you can't go through that again.

It may feel that even if you continue to do all these things and are trying to come out of it that it is not doing anything. But, it probably is. Remember what your CPN said to you last time. You were doing all these things and still not feeling that better. But she said, it probably is doing something and if you weren't doing them you would probably be in hospital by now. You would have probably have acted on the urges and either be very ill or under a section. Also, it was a relatively quick episode wasn't it. At it's worst it was only for a couple of weeks. In the past it could have lasted months. It's not permanent. You need to ensure you keep doing all you do when things are better and it will pass quicker.

It will probably feel as though you have gone back to where you started from. But you haven't. You can deal with it and you have in the past. Each time you have dealt with it it has been a bit easier. Keep doing what you have been doing and it will make it easier.


See you on the other side :-)

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