I bloody hate essays.

The title says it all!

Still haven’t been back here, there’s too much going on – sorry!

I have to write this essay and then I really will be back! 

Thank you all so much for your support recently – it really helps me keep going! And a special thank you to the lovely one who emailed to check how I’m doing – much appreciated! 🙂 

In other news – next week Ellie is off to Germany! I’m quite excited to see where my friend is living on her year abroad, and to try out my slightly dodgy German skills! I will write properly before I go though, once I’ve finished this horrible essay!

Lots of love,

Ellie

P.S. Really missing blogging… need more hours in the day! 

End of term!

By some miracle it’s here… the end of term!

I didn’t finish all my coursework – had to get an extension on 1 essay, but managed the rest.

This week I had to hand in a lab report, a project and a language portfolio, do a german presentation and a statistics exam… so I’m pretty glad that I managed to do all of that, even if I couldn’t manage the essay as well.

And now it’s the easter holidays. Back to London tomorrow, for a month of “holiday”.

Unfortunately I can’t really take much time off, there’s this essay to write, another lab report and revision to start… but term 2 of year 2 is done, and for now at least I am going to take a bit of time for myself!

So tomorrow I will start playing catch up with reading blogs. I may not manage to read every single post, seeing as I’ve missed LOADS, but I’ll try 🙂

I have quite a lot of write about, like my CBT session this week, anger, relationship stuff and general stuff that’s been going on, but I’m too tired right now.

Tonight, instead of going out with my housemates, I decided to stay in my (nice warm) house and watch Don’t tell the bride on BBC iplayer, relax and get an early night.

I am proud to say I didn’t give in to peer pressure and subject myself to another bad night out. But after the last time when I ended up running out of the club in panic, I decided it would be more sensible to have a night in (even if that makes me boring).

So looking forward to reading everyone’s blogs, I’ve really missed WP while I’ve been away!!

Lots of love,

Ellie xxx

One week to go

Thought I’d check in as I haven’t been blogging so much recently, like I said, too much work!

Hope everyone is doing ok here, and once I am done with my work I will catch up on all the posts I’ve missed.

There is 1 week left of term. This time next week, I should have: handed in 4 pieces of coursework, done a german presentation, done a statistics exam and finished all lectures/seminars for 2nd year…

It’s going to be a close call and I don’t know if I will get all of that done. But I’m going to give it a damn good try. I decided I’m sick of not being able to do my work, so I’m ploughing through anyway. I probably won’t get as good grades as I am hoping for, but I’m doing my best, and right now, my best isn’t fantastic but that’s the best I can do.

I am saying this cautiously, as I don’t want to jinx things, but things seem to be looking up. I am still having lows, but also having days that are ok, good even, this week. The psychiatrist said that once I start feeling better it will be gradual, there will gradually become more good days and less bad days until ta da – you’re better!

There is definitely a long way to go before I feel better, but progress is being made. I don’t know if it’s the CBT, or the medication, a mixture of the two, or that this week has randomly been a bit better, but the point is there is hope, and things will change.

I’ll be back soon!

Lots of love,

Ellie xxx

CBT – week 8

I managed to oversleep this morning, and woke up at about 8:20 (should have left my house at 8:15) so I had to get a taxi (again) – oops!

But I made it on time so it was ok.

A asked how my week was and I said not good. I have been feeling really hopeless and hadn’t managed to get any work done.

We talked about the work and how I am expecting perfection from myself when I am actually ill. I am pushing myself too hard and that is actually holding me back. I think that I can’t do all of it to the standard I want, therefore it seems hopeless and pointless to even try, so I don’t do it, and end up feeling like a failure anyway.

If I could accept that my best at the moment isn’t perfect, maybe I’d get further.

We talked about how I am a perfectionist, and will feel like anything less than a 1st is failure. A asked me: If you get a 2:1, will you have failed? And I thought about it. And no, of course that is not failing. I know that. And yet, I know I’d be very disappointed if I don’t manage it. A said maybe the perfectionism is me trying to make up for my past mistakes. And if that’s the case, then even getting a 1st won’t help – it won’t change what happened, it can’t change the past.

Then A asked if I had been feeling worse after doing the retelling last week about the strangling memory. I actually haven’t been though. I haven’t been having nightmares, screaming in my sleep or having flashbacks this week *touch wood*. So I guess that’s progress in itself. I felt kind of relieved after the last session because I had been able to talk about it, and nothing bad happened. A said something at the time that made a lot of sense – What is the worst thing that could happen? (and I said nothing really, it would just be scary) and Will it be as bad as it actually was? (No). And somehow after all this time trying to repress it, it turned out talking about it was actually kind of helpful, even if tiring.

We will be coming back to that I am sure, as I haven’t really finished dealing with it. But today we talked about the thing that I think is the root to my depression/anxiety/PTSD.

I’ve written about it here only once. And I ended up making it into a password protected post. I was paranoid and terrified that somehow someone I know would find my blog and read it. I might try and write about it again soon, because it might help and because I am trying to deal with it (finally) but I may end up with password protected posts again…we’ll see.

As next week is the last week before the holidays, we have decided that we won’t look at that next week because it will be 4 or 5 weeks until I see A again, and she doesn’t want me to end up feeling worse if we end up opening up the memories without having time to deal with them. I think that’s a good idea, but in a strange way I am looking forward to starting sessions again after the holidays, because I feel like once I can deal with this, I’ll be a long way on the way to recovery. (If that even makes sense).

So instead, next week we are looking at thoughts again. Thoughts that cause worry chains, but they are just thoughts and they don’t have to come true. Like about A crashing her car – it didn’t happen (of course).

So this week I am trying to take note of the thoughts that cause these worry chains.

So I’m going to be having a good long think about all this, and I’ll let you all know what I come up with. And today I feel like there is actually hope (again).

Sometimes having therapy on a Monday morning seems like a bad start to the week, but I do find that generally after my sessions I feel more hopeful. So maybe it’s a good start to the week.

Maybe everything’s going to be ok after all? I just need to give it (even more) time.

I have now had 7 sessions out of a possible 20. In a way it doesn’t feel like I’ve got very far, but in another way it feels like every week I’m getting a bit further, and all of these little steps will add up. It seems like now I have got to trust A a bit, and she is getting to know more about me, we are making more and more progress each week.

And the moral of the story is, give it a try. It might help (even if you were convinced it wouldn’t.)

Lots of love,

Ellie xxx

P.S. I’m starting to notice a trend in my blogging/thoughts – the beginning of the week (following therapy) I am hopeful and things seem to be on the up, and then as the week goes on I seem to feel worse… Hopefully in time this will lessen and everyday will become a hopeful day!

Not much to say (but I’m still here)

I haven’t been around much over the last week. Partly because I was feeling quiet (like I already said) and partly because there has been nothing else much to say. Everything I have to say, I have already said before. I feel like I’m being very repetitive – I feel rubbish. I want to feel better. I am procrastinating my life away and doing no work. I feel useless. Nothing seems to make me feel any better. I am at a point where all I want to do is give up but I still know I can’t.

– I’ve said all that before.

Tomorrow is CBT, so I will probably have something to say after that.

I have still been reading, and have finally caught up (I think).

No one seems to know how to help me anymore. I feel stuck.

Hope everyone is ok and had a good weekend,

Lots of love

Ellie xxx

A little bit quiet

I’m feeling a little bit quiet at the moment.

I am still here but I don’t feel like writing much and I don’t have much to say. A lot is going on in Ellieland and it’s all a bit much at the moment.

I’m trying to keep up with reading blogs but I haven’t been commenting as much because I can’t think of many pearls of wisdom, and like I said I’m feeling a little bit quiet at the moment.

I’ll be back to writing lots of posts again soon, I’m sure.

But I’m just keeping on for now, and things are quite hard. 

Take care everyone!

Lots of love,

Ellie xxx

CBT – Week 7

Yep – it’s Monday again!

In today’s session we talked about how my week has been – not good basically. And we talked about the psychiatrist, and why even though he has a plan, it made me feel hopeless because it’s going to take such a long time.

Cognitive distortions at work again – trying to predict the future. A said “do you have a crystal ball?”, which is a good point really. I am being pessimistic and assuming that the CBT and medication won’t help, and that we really will have to try every option that there is to make me feel better. It might not happen. I need to approach this from a more positive angle – they wouldn’t get me to try these things if they didn’t think they would help, and if they don’t help, there are still other options.

I said I feel like I am functioning less, because I missed quite a bit of uni last week, and phoned in sick for my volunteering. By the end of the session, A said she actually thinks it’s progress, because I am realising that I can’t/don’t have to do everything, and I am noticing when I need to take some time off. Before I would always go to uni/other commitments, no matter how bad I felt, but now I am starting to pay more attention to how I am feeling, and be a bit nicer to myself.

We also talked about my perfectionism again. I told A that I don’t think I’m going to get a first. She said “what’s the worst thing that could happen?”

Me: “I could actually fail.”

A: “Is there evidence that you are likely to fail?”

Me: “No, I probably won’t actually fail. But if I don’t get a first I will FEEL like I have failed.”

A: “But is that true? Would you have failed if you got a 2:1?”

Me: “No.”

This conversation went on, and the gist of it was that:

a) I’m angry because I am working hard, and under normal circumstances getting a first would be quite possible, yet no matter how much I try I can’t concentrate at the moment so I am not working at my best.

b) I want to get a first to prove the ex wrong. He always made me feel like I couldn’t do stuff, and I don’t want to let him ruin any more of my life. If I get a first it is a major achievement, and I will have done it without and in spite of him*.

and c) I need to change my expectations of myself, because aiming high is good, but seeing anything other than the best as a failure is not.

Then we came back to trauma stuff. Because that’s the way the session went. A asked me to give an example of a time where the ex made me feel like I couldn’t do something/that I was a failure. I couldn’t do it. I was dissociating and we used the grounding technique to bring me back to the room. It was like I felt dizzy even though I wasn’t moving, and when I shut my eyes it seemed like the world was shaking, like when you watch a home video and the camera wobbles a lot.

We then started on the retelling of the memory that I have flashbacks of a lot. Today I did it in the past tense, so it was more detached but next week I will do it in the first person present tense – “I am in my room.”

Afterwards I went to my safe space, and then at the end of the session we said goodbye until next week. We had a longer session than normal today, and A said I could stay and sit for a little while to make sure I was ok before I left.

Even just talking a bit about it today was hard, but I feel a little better for it. The memory doesn’t seem quite as scary anymore, and even though it did happen and it was horrible, it can’t hurt me anymore. I need to remember that. “What is the worst thing that could happen?” That’s a good question, and when thinking about memories, actually nothing can happen because he is no longer in my life, and he can’t hurt me anymore.

I think today was a very productive session actually. And now I’ve written this and reflected on it, I am feeling a little bit more motivated to do some work (even if I didn’t manage to make it to the gym today, and had a nap instead – oops!)

So maybe there is some hope after all!

Lots of love,

Ellie xxx

*We actually discussed this too, and A asked if I would still be proving him wrong if I got a 2:1… I guess the answer is yes.

Trying

I’ve written 294 words. It’s not a lot but it’s a start. I have all this coursework to do, so I had to start somewhere.

I’m translating the first 2 pages of Harry Potter und der Stein der Weisen (AKA HP and the philospher’s stone) into English. 294 words so far, I’m about 1/4 of the way through the second page. That’s my aim before dinner, to finish the page.

I had an idea that I will translate pages 3 and 4 from English into German too. But I don’t have the English version of the book here, so my dad is going to scan it.

I always underestimate the brain power and amount of time needed for me to translate stuff. It’s not hard, Harry Potter, and especially the first one, is written for children. I should be able to translate 2 pages!

Hopefully my teacher will think this is a good idea when she comes to mark it. We have to do an independent learning portfolio, which basically means we have to do 6 pieces of work and evaluate it, and show how it has helped us progress with our German learning. I did 3 last term, so just have to make corrections on those, and I’m doing the Harry Potter translations, a film review (of a German film that I haven’t actually watched yet) and some kind of grammar exercise. I think.

Wow, this was a boring blog post – sorry! But it kind of helped to get it straight in my mind.

It’s taken me most of the day to get going with work. I stayed in bed until nearly 2, and didn’t do much once I got up. I spoke to S just before 4 and I hadn’t started yet. He told me to just try and do something. I know he’s right. I know he knows that I’m struggling, but sometimes it feels like people are thinking “just get over it”, even though I know he’d never say that. And I hope he doesn’t think it either. I am trying, really hard.

But even if this is all I get done today, it’s better than nothing – right?

Lots of love,

Ellie xxx

P.S. I still find it so funny that one of the most common searches that leads to my blog is Despicable Me Minions! hehe

:(

How can I “stay positive” when I’m not even feeling positive to begin with?

Feeling utterly fed up.

Doesn’t feel like there’s any point in any of this anymore.

I want to just give up.