Written by Benjiman Grant

The Animal, The Animal, Trap, Trap,Trap Till The Cage Is Full

FATHERS DAY

So I did talk about Baz a little the other day, but today is simple. Baz met me  when I was playing with his niece and nephew, I was 3 years old. Immediately I went home to mum and told her how great he was. So to keep up my innocence, cupid struck them with an arrow, and no more than a week about 2/3 months later (mum corrected my bad child memory) he moved in. Now we all are force fed stories of evil step-parents as a child, I never once understood this. Baz was never anything but caring for me. The true magic is to me, is that someone can take a child who is not their own, not their responsibility, and love them unconditionally. Baz shared something special with me, we had a unique bond. He had a troubled childhood, and I presume he saw a redemption for his own parents failings with him. He worked extra hard to resolve every issue I had and supported me in every endeavour.

In parenting, people discuss the balance of nurture and nature.Through Baz’s tutelage I learned compassion and pride. He created such a fantastic home, a home I was always excited to return to. He eventually had his own health problems during my teenage years, but he never stopped his constant barrage of love.

To Baz on fathers day, and too all the other mother-fuckers in the world, Happy Fathers Day!

 

FAMILY DINNER

Today has begun with butterflies in my stomach, nerves, excitement. The unexpected can be anxiety inducing. Minds race with ideas of how the day will go, panic and frustration can bubble near the surface. The idea of moving forward though means we have to try, we have to step forward and push ourselves. It can be difficult to admit that I am constantly in  a state of not wanting to do things, because of my own self doubt and fear. It can take a lot of willpower and self control to make myself step forward and put myself into situations that most would look at as normal.

Off to Cozy Club in Stamford. A beautiful building, an old post office sorting warehouse. Luz and I had a brilliant meal there last year. We loved the virgin cocktails and the food was so good for the reasonable price. If you live in the Stamford area, I can thoroughly recommend it, they are also extremely caring for people with special requirements.

 

HOW MUCH DOES IT HURT ON A SCALE OF 1-10

Pain is judged on a visual scale for most people. but when something is constant, it can manifest in different ways.

For example, sometimes it can be direct pain, i can put this on a scale as it is felt. Othertimes it can be more subliminal. I hear my pain, i close my eyes I see my pain. It occupies my thoughts, dreams and life. I liken it to tinnitus, as it can be the only thing my brain wants to acknowledge. I have found often my willingness to protect myself and to contain my pain, can make a confusing tableux, people expect that if my pain is worse than, for example, childbirth, I should be bent over double in agony. And I was for months, Years even. Pain, however does plateaux. It comes to a point where screaming, crying and physical release doesn’t serve as much of a release.

It does become exhausting. I find myself tired from doing nothing one day, it can spasm and trigger with no notice. It becomes worse in extreme weather. Then along with the pain comes the other symptoms; sweating, cramping, dehydration, lethargy and of course depression.

To say it is hard to cope with is an understatement. Honestly, I have been more physically relaxed since my psychotherapy. Of course, we know that CRPS is linked to the sympathetic nervous system. Being in control of my mental health gives me more energy and focus towards the pain of day to day life.

The spoon theory sets an example of a disabled person having twelve spoons a day. In my mind with multiple problems I halved that. However, with my positive attitude and willingness to push myself harder I feel like I have all twelve of those spoons. It really can be a domino effect, we often hear phrases like positive mental attitude and dismiss them. I look at it this way; as a child when I was ill I was constantly told to get some fresh air as it will help me feel better. Well of course, a child knows best and I stayed In bed. The moment I did open a window, go outside for a walk, I did begin to feel better. The same seems to apply for positivity and it’s effects on our health. We want to write it off as optimistic mumbo jumbo, and finding it is no cakewalk. I can state that it does make a difference. I would say I average out maybe a 5/10 in pain. Spikes probably about 7/8. I feel like since I have been more mental focused and positive that is slightly lower. Perhaps only by half a point or so, but enough to make everything a little bit easier.

For those who suffer with chronic pain it is similar to getting that new pain killer, that new treatment, it is worth it.

What I am trying to say is speak to your doctors about your mental well being. Understand yourself, but don’t be afraid to ask for help for those other hidden pains. The problem with mental illness is that we rarely think to catch it early. It has to manifest into a breakdown before we realise it’s that bad. If you found a lump or a physical symptom that was unusual, you would go to a medical professional. The same should be for mental symptoms. If  you have been in a rut for over a month, perhaps you can’t sleep, constant nerves, wanting to exclude yourself from social life or panic and anxiety, these could all be symptoms and you can get help.

Please don’t let fear or judgement stop you from trying to get help. It could save your life.

I often said to my psychiatrist that I never wanted to commit suicide, but I wanted to be dead. I felt like I wasn’t living a life. I was a husk of a person just going through the motions.  Therapy gave me back life. I had a reason again. It took me a while to adjust and come to terms with being happy again. It wasn’t like a switch, but a very long process, which took hard work. It was worth it.

People are fundamentally good and will help if you ask.

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