(OK, maaaaybe a slightly overly dramatic title. But hey, titles can get a bit boring, I might as well make'em more interesting!)
I'm me. Surprisingly enough.
I'm me. Me.
Not anyone else. I fear, I fear though, that I'm becoming someone else. The real me, the me that I was, that I was, is very different to me now. Was the other one me, or this one me, or both and "me" has changed?
I often wonder, especially now, whether I'll end up back in a psych waiting room ever again. I've got one more appointment that is a home visit, in under 15 hours time, and then I'm out of mental health services. That's it (hence why the end is nigh...). 8 years after turning up to sit in a psych waiting room for the very first time. In the middle of winter, in the middle of a frosty afternoon, in the middle of a cemetery. I remember the jumper I was wearing - it is still in my wardrobe, it fits me now in a way it hasn't for much of the last 8 years due to the weight gain of psych meds.
In a way I'll miss it. Not the CPN of Doom who makes me have to clear the living room of the Ironing Pile of Doom and the empty wine bottles, or the knowledge that there's some team meeting on a Monday morning where people utter those words "How's Hannah?" (maybe less so now, but certainly there was a time on Monday mornings when my name was always mentioned). But the fact if I were to need help, that I'd not be fighting to get my story out from the beginning. The advantage of being in the system for so long is I used to be able to do potted histories well, but I'm out of practice with doing them nowadays. Been with current team for 3 years and not had assessments by other people for 2 - even with the student nurses/doctors that I've seen on visits from my CPN, I've not really had to do the "first assessment" bit for a while.
I wonder what it would be like. To go back into the system having left. Obviously I'd love not to, but there's always this niggle I will be forced back in at some point or other. My sanity is patchy in places. I'm fighting some stuff at the moment. I know they are a bad idea, not ones to entertain, to keep down, but I'm still fighting it. Doing this stuff would seriously hamper everything, so I'll endeavour to sit on the thoughts without acting on them.
My sanity is a bit patchy in places. That's not dire. That's just me. Just a case of keeping safe and things. Accepting that I am a being with added mental features and living with it.
Psych waiting rooms are odd places. Really odd places. I won't miss them. The crutch, as it were, of being able to say "I'm on the books of the Early Invention in Psychosis team" to prying noseymoos (including GPs) and that shutting them up as they jump to their own conclusions from there (though I don't often used it) is helpful. Well, not helpful, rather that it is easier.
A was-once-in-MH-services status is going to be weird. I know that the majority of people aren't in mental health services, but I always had a feeling that I'd be a long-term case. I guess 8 years is a long time, but with the looks I've had over the years I'm clearly one of those that professionals feel concerned about. If I wasn't dead, I thought I'd be on the books of some MH team for ever and ever.
Day to day, I'm in no position to be in mental health services most of the time. At the moment. However... [insert a diatribe of what ifs and worst case scenarios of your choice here]...
Every other time I've been discharged from a service, it was a transfer to another. Each time I was in crisis but had got too ill for EvilPsych to want me (or me him)/got too old/got too psychotic for CMHT. Now I'm not in crisis. I've got to the end of my allotted time with the psychosis team and have been deemed too well to go to the CMHT (where the psychiatrist was mean and horrible and tried to do tough talking with me when I was trying [and failing] to adjust to life after psych ward, it didn't go too well...) It is a New Thing to be discharged from a team properly.
I haven't the foggiest what will happen tomorrow. I know we need to write a letter to the GP, as they technically are now my support for MH stuff (not that I'll use them. Given everything, GPs are avoided by me mostly.) so a brief summary is needed. I'm hoping that isn't too horrendous.
I'm seeing her alone, I'm hoping without Mum to seem all sad (seriously Mum did a sad face when the CPN of Doom said "So I'll see Hannah for the final time next month"... slightly odd, I must admit.) I'll be able to be suitably detached to make it as painless a task as possible.
I want to sing from the rooftops, with knickers on my head, to say "I've been deemed vaguely sane enough"... but I know that wouldn't do me any favours.
I know that I need to appreciate this achievement, but still look out for those tell-tale warning signs which need occasionally looking for.
I know that I've been "stable" (crap word...) for ages, but I always fear the worst. And as the worst did happen (well, nearly the worst, I guess the worst would have been actual death) several times, I know I have to live with it being in my past. Tricky to let it stay in my past, rather than effect my present. Or my future.
So much has happened in 8 years. Aged 13 I had grand plans for me, and the world. Unsurprisingly they didn't include psych wards, or psychiatrists, or huge amounts of stuff that has happened since then.
I'm me. And people seem to like this me. I struggle with people liking me, was easier when no-one liked me. I mean it is lovely having people I'd call friends, being in a relationship and everything, but it feels a bit... well, alien. When so wrapped up in being crazy, I hadn't got the capacity to be the me I am now. Now I'm here, and it is weird. Bloomin' lovely, but just a bit weird. Getting used to it I guess but still can't quite believe it.
When I was struggling just to remember to breathe, that was that. Now my mind can be thinking about a gazillion different things and is being stretched in a million different directions. Which presents different challenges. Good challenges, life is good, but sometimes a bit tricky.
I fear that life minus a mental health team will be somehow different to life today, when the mental health team go about their business and I go about mine. Just there, just in case. Not that mental health teams have been particularly helpful in the past at points, but better there than not (in a way).
I don't know what tomorrow brings. More than "a discharge CPA" (and various other stuff which will be fine). It is overwhelmingly positive, I can see that. Just a bit apprehensive about (a) whether the CPN of Doom will be a twit and (b) how things will sink in after tomorrow is over with.
Wait and see, Hannah, wait and see...
[Not sure about some of the words here. The words feel a bit wonky but I can't straighten them out. Hope it makes sense.]