I’m in respite again. I’m really disappointed that I have a room (the last one available) in the main office. Which is open 24/7, to both men and women that are unstable (like me!) or drug takers. The office worker has the tv on, heating up to the max, and the bathroom is a depressing and shameful walk through the office. As my door is unlocked (no locks) I don’t feel safe. And so my PTSD symptoms are playing havoc. I’m simultaneously depresssed and tired but hyper vigilant and panicked.
There will be constant noise and as those with PTSD will agree, it’s amplified and irritating on an irrational level.
I know I shouldn’t complain, we have a good system here and I’m more fortunate than most to be able to ask for help and anticipate the mental health service will provide for me. But there’s no mistaking that my situation is complex and I struggle to feel comfortable in most situations. Usually I can adapt, but there’s no room for that here.
The two alternatives were to be in my house alone – not good. Or stay at S’s. Which should have been fine (he offered) but the room has no door, as such I don’t tend to sleep well because I hear the kids! And they’re usually up early, so I didn’t anticipate much sleep. Not only that, but why should they all feel my presence like a dark, looming storm? I can’t pretend to be happy, I’m no company to be around. I can’t concentrate so reading and tv is out and again, the noise becomes grating. Especially after a week of full on care.
I’m breathing loudly and shallow, I feel my wolf hearing is on high alert and I wonder if the (male) office worker can hear me breathing. I just want to disappear into the walls. I want to be nothing and no one.
I feel grimy and unclean. I haven’t showered today or brushed my teeth and my clothes are marked. Clear signals that I’m becoming increasingly unstable.
My case manager asked me today, how will you know you’re well? I’ll shower and dress without hesitation, brush my teeth, drive anywhere I want without fear, stop somewhere for a coffee, chat to my friends. There’s a myriad of such innocuous aspects to my life that are missing. To live freely and without the emotional and mental drain seems alien to me.