Saturday, January 28, 2006

I've fallen for my shrink

Oh what a cliche am I?!

Single, emotionally unstable girl falls for understanding, sympathetic, charming older psychiatrist. I am so sad.

I even thought about what I was going to wear today. They commented at work how smart I was looking. One of the boys even smirked 'you scrub up well'. The truth is I have read his first report on me to my GP. Two things have lodged themselves in my mind. The first has been niggling away at me ever since and I was determined to prove him wrong.

'She presented as a tall, casually dressed woman'.

'Casually dressed'?! He could have said 'fucked up, over emotional, neurotic freak' and I would have been less riled. 'Casually dressed' indeed. I'll show him.

The second comment made me laugh. It is ingrained in my records for ever. I hope the government have a good probe and go to town with their Freedom on Information Act.

'She is very angry with Tony Blair'.

I liked that.

As always I was dreading it. I felt sick as I sat on the bus and wondered what was the point of dragging it all up again. But we didn't drag it all up, we never do. We talked about the last month, how I'm feeling now and my plans for the future. He knows how I feel, he understands, and he thinks it's all 'normal'. That is the most reassuring part of these visits. I walk out with a spring in my step feeling like a normal human being for a few hours.

He said my progress was 'encouraging'. I talked about the problems with work, sleeping, I even told him about the deterioration of my friendship with Claire. He said it was all 'normal'. Oh joy!

He hit the nail on the head with Claire . He asked if I had always been the stronger one in our relationship, and he was right, I have. He told me this often happens in situations like mine. She is used to me being there in her times of need, she counts on it, but now I have found out that when I am in need she can't cope and she runs. It was up to me to decide, he said, but if I was comfortable with this arrangement then our friendship could last. He pointed out that some friendships last the years just because they're there, out of habit rather than strength. When something like this happens it leads you to reassess and sometimes you may realise that you're not actually getting anything out of it. It's like cleaning out your wardrobe, I guess, and throwing out much loved clothes that don't fit you any more. Maybe we've grown out of each other.

He was worried about my sleeping and concerned about my lack of concentration and productivity at work. He interestingly pointed out that sometimes we judge ourselves unfairly. Sometimes we have a warped recollection of how in control we were before the trauma and we compare ourselves to a falsely high standard. Perhaps he's right, maybe I wasn't as wonderfully efficient before as I think I was. I do know, though, that I have never forgotten a meeting before.

I am doing well, though, I can't ask for more than that. 3-6 months he said, before I'm fully recovered, although as he always reminds me I will never be the same again.

We are never the same though are we. Each day changes us in a small but invisible way. I am determined to recover, although sometimes it feels like a never ending challenge. I will keep on fighting through, with the help of my loved ones and fellow passengers.

Will I be 'me' again, or will I be someone new? I don't know, but I'm sure as hell going to be someone better.