I have been wracking my brain trying to think about what this post was going to be about. I kept bouncing between my mental state, my placement, my family, my study, and everything else in between. I couldn’t sensibly decide on one topic to share with you all. So I have decided to share all of them. This weeks post will be The Week That Was.
THIS POST OPENLY DISCUSSES MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES AND MAY BE DISTRESSING TO SOME READERS. DISCRETION IS ADVISED
I start by updating everyone on my mental health. For those of you who follow along at my Twitter, @LukeSondergeld, or keep tabs on my Facebook, Luke Sondergeld, or the Maintain the Rage Facebook page, Maintain The Rage, you would know that things haven’t been going so well. I shared yesterday that I have been feeling a lot like I had done back in the middle of August. This is particularly distressing as that is also pre-ECT. The most distressing part of all it is the anxious and helpless thoughts that are returning, with no rhyme or reason. I feel as though I have been knocked to the ground and am constantly being kicked by circumstance. The most frustrating part of it all is, my life is pretty great. I have have an awesome wife, my kids are pretty great, I have a roof over my head (which I own), I have a car, a job, food in my belly, and I am not actively been persecuted, hunted, victimised, or belittled. I have no reason to feel the way I do. But I still seem to be coming back to it, over and over again. It is moments like these, in my darkest moments, I catch my mind wandering back to suicidal thoughts.
Through all of this I have been on my clinical placement, ironically, for Mental Health. In the interest of keeping the workplace, the consumers, and the staff protected, I won’t mention where I have been doing the placement. The placement has been amazing. The staff have been great. The consumers have been challenging and accepting all at the same time. I have been allowed to do my job without being treated like a child, and my opinion, thought inexperienced, is still listened to and respected. I still have another weeks placement ahead of me which is going to be challenging and rewarding all at the same time.
The one thing that has been the constant, the rock, the shelter, has been my family, my friends, and those close to me. They have all been my greatest support though my depression, the most understanding when I am stuck behind my computer completing 26 Quizzes in a little over a week, forgiving when I loose my temper, and supportive when I am a blubbering mess or quivering wreck. To all those who I call family, and you know who you are, thank you and I love you.
To add a little salt to the wound I am still trying to complete my Bachelor of Nursing, hence the placement. This has also meant I have recently, as previously alluded too, been completing, and subsequently passing, 26 Quizzes on Pathophysiology. This week I still have one more to complete, which is some 60 questions and has 3 hours allotted to it. Additionally, I have a 1500 word reflection to write about a difficult behaviour, how I handled it, and what I learnt from it. Thankfully I am in the habit of writing and reflecting, so it should be too difficult.
So that is the Week That Was; this week will see a return to my Psychiatrist for a review and a serious discussion about my headspace and what we are going to do, a return to my placement, more study which I hope to complete, and somewhere in there some peace and quiet. To those reading, and sharing, this post…
Maintain the Rage