Monday, 31 August 2009

Daniel

"Daniel is travelling tonight on a plane, I can see the red tail lights heading for Spain"

We fly to Spain on Thursday for a weeks holiday. Great? No, I hate holidays. I am a real home-bird. I constantly dreamed of escaping from home as a child but once I got a place of my own, never wanted to leave it. I am still happy with the holy trinity of shelter, food and safety.

I saw the practice nurse on Tuesday. Had bloods done for cholesterol, fasting blood sugar, depakote, LFTs and (I noticed while slyly glancing at the form) a secret blood alcohol was also taken...nudge nudge, say nothing to the patient.

Afterwards I saw another nurse, "the cardiovascular nurse". She checked my blood pressure, it was too high 145/85. She checked it agin, even higher, 150/90. She checked it a third time 165/95. "We'll go with the first one" she decided. Well what was the point in that? Rather than record the most significant reading, do they just keep checking it until they get the lowest reading?

CardioNurse then checked my weight and engaged in the usual patronising crap about diet and exercise. Regular walks would help, I explained I didn't really leave the house due to paranoia. Perhaps I could cut out the biscuits with my afternoon coffee. I explained that I don't have a sweet tooth and don't eat biscuits or chocolates etc. but that anti-psychotics had given me an insatiable craving for carbs such as pasta, rice and potatoes. Had I ever thought about reducing my portion sizes? Wow, what a brilliant idea, despite talking to numerous doctors, psychiatrists, dietitians and lifestyle advisors I had never considered such a radical idea... did she pick up on the irony... I don't know. So much for the joined up working in the health service. Why are people always surprised at the lack of inter-agency communication in social services when NHS staff don't even communicate with each other.

I apologized for forgetting my urine sample yet again (four times in 2 years... "don't worry bring it next time"... I could have went to the toilet and pissed but that would have ruined her schedule), she recorded my weight and my lowest blood pressure reading and that was that for another six months. All the boxes ticked, statistics recorded, targets met and who gives a fuck for the actual patient outcome? Not that I'm bitter ;o)

On the Wednesday I saw the shrink. My wife was with me. There was also a medical student, who as ever remained completely mute. Why do students never ask questions? What is the point of them being there if they don't participate? Why don't they just watch a video? Fuck knows. Anyway, despite feeling below par, because I was busy working on the radio and recording music, the consensus was that I was mildly hypomanic. Hmmph! Well how about some groovy medication. I ask again for Aripiprazole. "No. I don't want to change anything if you'e going on holiday. If you feel you need more sedation take an extra depakote at night". We then had an argument where I reminded her she was always putting things off and it would always be in the future. I would end up having my medication reviewed in 2035 when I would be too old for the relevant meds. Finally she wrote in my notes in block capitals "ARIPIPRAZOLE IF NO IMPROVEMENT" for next time.

The subject of alcohol was broached but I suggested she speak to CardioNurse and informed her of the lovely routine and perhaps they could get their shit together and do some joined up working. You're probably reading this and thinking PSYCHOPATH!!!! But us poor retards do get tired of repeating ourselves and going through the same old shit with different health care workers.

Why isn't there a little card in my notes that says "Binge drinker. Is fully aware of the long term risks of alcohol. Has reduced his drinking from 120 to 70 units per week but is still at the pre-contemplative stage and not ready for change just yet"

Too sensible I guess, must be the clouds in my eyes.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Flat Beat

Slept for a couple of hours yesterday afternoon and went to bed very early, around 8pm. Sleep is my usual indicator for mood so this is not particularly good news.

However, there has been no turbulence in the tummy today. I have not been anxious. I have felt flat, distant, unfazed, detached.

It's been a wasted day though, I have done nothing productive. Just sat around the house. My pal phoned again today and today I decided to answer. I didn't want to but I didn't want him asking my wife why I wasn't answering the phone. She needs her holiday. The show must go on. Anyway, he wanted to pop down and return something he'd borrowed, so down he came. I really wasn't in the mood for chatting but being a real people pleaser (read that as spineless wimp) I indulged. I smiled and tried to look interested although I failed to really perform in my usual pretentious manner. Fortunately he didn't stay long. He wanted me to accompany him to a friends house tonight but I declined.

Again I've had a couple of glasses of wine today... but at least I went to bed early last night and didn't sit up drinking into the wee small hours.

I think my wife has an inkling that I'm heading for a downer but we are both pretending all is well. I hope I'm wrong. I really don't want to let her down.

Monday, 17 August 2009

When Tomorrow Comes

So did I feel better this morning? Did the cold light of day put a new perspective on my little chat-room drama? No, not really.

I lay in the bath for an hour. Not really thinking, just gazing.

I made a cup of tea and wondered what I should do. My stomach began to complain, broadcasting waves of nausea. I could sense the old black dog sniffing around outside and trying to find it's way back home. I am so fickle, so sensitive and so selfish. I am certain I have a personality disorder.

Anyway, I fired up the computer went onto Facebook and swapped my picture for a blank white square. As I was deleting my profile a chat-box popped up.  Someone from the room last night said "Good morning". I'm not sure what to do, he's an old friend but he is very close to the lady I offended last night. Any explanation I make will sound pathetic. I don't want to sound like a martyr nor do I want to offend anyone. I ignore him and quickly delete all my friends and that's the end of Facebook. I half expect an email from him asking what's going on but forget that I have already been rude by ignoring his chat this morning. As ever, it's all me, me, me.

I am inactive for the rest of the morning.

The phone rings... caller ID tells me it's a friend. I don't answer. I don't want to speak to anyone today. Nonetheless I feel the need to type this anonymous drivel. Surely a self indulgent plea of "poor me" if ever there was one.

But this is no time for self indulgence. We go on holiday in a couple of weeks. My wife is really looking forward to it. I can't reveal any weakness whatsoever. Got to keep my big smiling mask firmly in place. Especially next week when we see the shrink.

I started drinking early today. Must hide all evidence. So it's time to wash the wineglass, brush my teeth, rinse with mouthwash and have a wee sleep before my wife comes home. I know it's all disingenuous but it's for the best.

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Crash! Boom! Bang!

Well, everything was going great... up until about 5 minutes ago.

The album is now finished. We have a holiday booked to the current bomb capital of Europe... Palma. Fortunately we have travel insurance so that should ensure a huge family squabble in the event of our deaths, God bless them.  We're getting a new bathroom fitted and I'm on the verge of buying a new PC. All good.

I have some on-line friends I "meet up with" in a chat room each Sunday evening for a laugh and some banter. It usually consists of irony, sarcasm and self  deprecating stuff. My kinda stuff. This evening however we were joined by an occasional visitor who was telling us how nice their part of the country was. I started "joking" about the negative aspects of her region and the more she retaliated the more I pushed the envelope. True to form I went too far. I had no idea I was offending her until she told me where to go and stormed out of the room.

I used to experience this regularly in the real world, where I all too often misread situations, thinking I was incredibly witty when in fact I was in fact offending someone. However, I have barely left the house over the past 5 years and now only engage with these virtual friends when I am in the mood. So this has come as a bit of a shock to me. I have become so used to being wrapped up in my small cocoon, isolated from real people and real emotions. I feel incredibly guilty. I really didn't mean to offend her, I was trying to make her laugh.

My immediate kneejerk response is to extinguish all ties with the group. Yet I am so inconsistent and shallow I know I never follow through with things in life. So will wait and see what tomorrow brings. Here I am moaning and playing the victim when I have actually hurt someone. What a guy!