(Or: At Home – Day Sixty-Eight)
I am back home in London, after my few days of holiday up in Liverpool. I had an unashamedly wonderful time – just for a while, it wasn’t about my illness. And just for a while, I wasn’t a ‘problem’.
However, there is the kick-back. I am exhausted, mentally and physically, and I really have no words to explain exactly how exhausted I am; it’s like nothing I’ve ever known. Today I found some words for it, in trying to explain to my partner: currently, I am holding onto my sanity with all of my strength, like one would a lifeline. It would be substantially easier to just let go, because holding onto it saps everything in my body and soul, but I’m also dimly aware that I could die if I did.
The whole Tier 4 bollocks is just so much to handle. Today I (well, my partner) phoned Mind (mental health charity) who passed us onto their legal team and they have given us the names of local care solicitors. It’s all getting rather serious. But I am legally able to challenge an assessment (woop) so all is not yet lost.
I am seeing a psychiatrist tomorrow to handle medication. I will be staying on quetiapine (I started to reduce dosage, with hilariously bad results, so I’m back to normal now) but need a new stabiliser and/or antidepressant because I’m suicidal and self-harming again. I need to emphasise that I do not want an anti-epileptic, because it would contradict orlistat, which would be my next step: weight-loss medication is a serious step, but I can’t risk coming off quetiapine which is making my weight soar.
Then, we discuss Tier 4. Depending on that, I see my GP for support in challenging the assessment.
Progress. But fucking hell, I am so fucking tired of fighting a system that is supposed to help people like me, people who are holding onto their lives by the skin of their teeth, rather than making them into desperate messes who have no autonomy and depend on the people around them utterly to keep them from oblivion.
It’s too much, and I am so lucky to have my partner.
Without her, I would be dead by now, and it is so fucking frightening to know that.