I don’t know what to do with myself.
Today I had conversations I didn’t think I ever would and was asked questions I’d never considered before. Questions like “Do you think you’ll be able to sit your exams next week?”, “Do you need to go part time?”, “Do you think you can carry on with your course?” and “How many meals are you eating?”. The answers were “No”, “No”, “Yes” and “One”.
So now I’m trapped in limbo waiting to hear what my department have to say. I’ve no idea what to do with my time until then. Do I revise for exams I may or may not be taking? When I was talking to people earlier we spoke about whether or not I could maybe sit one exam and defer the others, but I still don’t know what’s happening. I was told I need to try and remember that mental illness is like having the flu; when you have the flu, it’s okay for you to not be working and to feel rubbish, and it’s the same for mental health, you just can’t see the symptoms.
The prospect of potentially going part time (if that’s even an option on my course) is, to be quite frank, terrifying. It feels like I’ve failed and let my dysfunctional mind win. But the thing is that the medication I’ve started taking in the past few months, whilst it does seem to be helping on some levels, is making the exhaustion, sleep, and worst of all the nightmares worse than it’s ever been. I’m used to feeling exhausted and spending hours lying in bed trying to fall asleep, but I’m not used to the nightmares. I had them over the summer, and then they stopped. Now they’re back worse than ever, constantly there every night when I don’t take sleeping tablets to try and fall asleep, vivid, stressful, anxiety inducing, and in many cases terrifying. Even sleeping is anxiety-inducing now, and it feels like there’s now literally no place where I can get away from all of the intrusive thoughts in my head.
The other problem is food. Up until today I hadn’t actually thought about how much (or how little) I eat, and there are quite a few reasons why. Firstly, I’ve never eaten a huge amount anyway. Growing up I could barely every finish food when we’d go out for dinner and when we eat at home my portion sizes are always smaller than those of my parents. And that’s always been fine. But now that my depression is getting worse food just doesn’t seem interesting. It’s boring. It’s a bit like when you have a cold or have been feeling really sick – it feels like I might throw up if I eat and that eating is going to make me feel even more ill than I already am.