When faced with my demons I clothe them and feed them…

Archive for May, 2008


We have contact with my son tomorrow. I talked to his foster mum on the phone today and it wasn’t a good conversation. I wanted to ask her opinion about whether J would be OK to come to the house, as he had expressed a desire to look through his old things. I also wanted to register with her my idea that instead of him phoning us we could be allowed to phone him (at specific times). None of it went down well, in fact she seemed put out from the first minute when I said we wanted him to come to London this time.

Previously we have always gone down there (to Hertfordshire), and it’s quite a long drive, plus the further drive to wherever we have decided to go. The foster mum did seem to emphasise when I spoke to her last week that it would be OK for him to come to London, one of them will bring him on the train. It’s a lot quicker by train. So I was a bit non-plussed when she sighed in an irritated kind of way. Then the conversation just went even further downhill.

It’s the first time she has been like this, and it came as a bit of a shock. What is more important is that we are not getting any phone contact and she seems to think that us phoning there will put more pressure on J, and that, as he is doing well lately, she doesn’t want to risk it. He basically finds it easier to keep us in a separate compartment. That is how he copes.

I felt that I was a) being a nuisance b) being unreasonable c) somehow a monster by implication, because my son feels better not contacting me. And I know those reactions are a little over the top, but I have been hurting all day. I’m recovering from a breakdown as well, and definitely more insecure as a result.

As I was blogging this I got a phone call from J’s social worker who is a nice chap, well-meaning. I asked if we could arrange to meet and we set it up for next week, also with his manager. I have written the manager a letter detailing the concerns I have. It seems though, that the manager has already decided to say no to any changes in the phoning arrangements. I will just have to say well what can we do then?

I am somewhat dreading my mum arriving, somewhat dreading the contact and the weekend in general. It will probably not be as bad as I fear just at this moment.


Psychosis as Wish Fulfilment

Today I’m going to try titling the blog AFTER I’ve written it. Gives me a chance to work up some inspiration and find out what I’m mainly thinking of today.

Today was a successful day. Cleaned my room, then went to yoga, then to my computer class, then a bit of shopping, chatted to a friend then caught the Tube to Covent Garden and went to see Marjane Sartrapi’s Persepolis. Absolutely brilliant…a cartoon (beautifully and movingly drawn) memoir of her life growing up under various Iranian regimes as well as a spell in Vienna and ending up in Paris when her parents more or less told her to leave Iran and never go back (for her own sake)…there was no upbeat, resolved ending, it ended very abruptly actually when she arrives in Paris. I’d been wanting to see that for ages, so I’m really glad I got myself there. It’s one of the joys of living in London that I can choose from a seemingly infinite number of films and different cinemas. Nothing better on a damp afternoon like today than disappearing into another world for a few hours.

Hmm, was actually reflecting on the reasons for my psychosis, if indeed there can be said to be reasons. I don’t mean triggers, I just mean the underlying psychological motivation for taking as it were a holiday from reality as she is commonly understood. I’ve got to talk personally, because I only know about me, but there is a lot about reality that I find very hard to stomach. One thing I find hard to stomach is old age and death (oh, don’t we all?) Another is the separate existence of all these other humanoids. Apparently just like me, with their own set of thoughts, feelings and impulses. And therefore, to me at any rate, threatening. Then there’s all the shit that goes on. People hurting and killing other people. So-called acts of God like earthquakes which hurt and kill thousands albeit in a purely impersonal manner.

The nature of my particular psychosis is that I have the delusion that I am (more or less) God, that therefore I have the power to end the cycle of birth, pain and death, bring Heaven on earth, see instantly into the depths of any human being’s soul, etc etc. It is one hell of a powerful wish fulfilment! At the time it feels very real and significant.

Up till now I was ashamed to state the nature of my psychosis so baldly but, I don’t know. If you see it as an escape from harsh reality, a prolonged waking dream, the ultimate wish fulfilment, maybe it’s not so hard to understand. There’s a lot of people outside the pub of an evening when I go past. A lot of them drink habitually to dull that ache. I don’t feel the need to do that, but maybe my periodic bouts of psychosis serve somewhat of the same function.

Take care all. Love, Zoe.

Am probably moving to WordPress…

…that is if I can work out all the tecchie bits and bobs over there. Have set up a blog there and imported all my posts from here, but then noticed that my blogroll there was empty and also that I couldn’t figure out how to add a new post! I know…pathetic!

Well had quite a nice weekend with Richard. He stayed over two nights as it was Bank Holiday. It’s been pissing down yesterday and today. Yesterday had a bit of a mood wobble a propos of nothing in particular. Suddenly felt really low, needy and desperate for reassurance. It lasted approx two hours. It just went away by itself.

In the old days I was classic Bipolar 1. After maybe six or eight weeks of out of control mania I would slowly but surely descend into at least two or three months solid depression featuring suicidal ideation.

This time has been very different. Yeah, I have been prey to deluded thinking. Yeah I have done a few things I now regret. However none of them was dangerous or really destructive, I didn’t become promiscuous or have any inclination to. I didn’t really enjoy the mania. Actually I noticed very many physical symptoms which often eclipsed the mental stuff. I was a lot more aware of what was going on.

And now that I am very much touching down back where I was before all this kicked off I note a so far complete absence of the kind of protracted severe depression I used to succumb to. Frankly I am amazed and exhilarated by this realisation. However I am still subject, as always to unpredictable moodswings, witness my wobble yesterday.

Next on the agenda: give up this appalling smoking. I give myself no more than a week to do that but hope I can kick it in the next few days. I want to have finished with the Weed by next weekend when I see my boy. He hates me smoking. Hell, I hate me smoking.

Then, item by item, I will reinstate all the things I was doing before back into my life. Take care all. Love, Zoe.

Domestic mortality…

…as opposed to Nigella’s Goddess. Been cleaning, cooking, baking bread, shopping, washing, oh you know the drill. Saw the Crisis Team this morning and tried not to wind them up too much. Bit tired. Still not got gym-energy back.

Back to my pernnial moan: waah, everyone has more readers than me, and right now do not have the energy or the ingenuity to do anything much about it.

Listening to James Bond on BBC Radio 4. It’s a clevering-up treatment of a genre that usually leaves me cold, which I’ve found quite listenable.

Looking forward to Richard coming over. Run dry of ideas for now…Love, Z.

Hello lovelies!

I can hardly contain my probably unseemly delight that no less a personage than Jane has linked to me. It feels as if I have suddenly and unexpectedly achieved a lifetime’s ambition after years of poorly-rewarded effort. Watch out Zoe, she linked to you, but probably got you mixed up with someone else! She can unlink when she reads your shameless grovelling comment on her blog, that let’s face it, is only there because she linked to you!

Oh hell, I know how ridiculous I am! Now I feel I have something to live up to, and I have that feeling that apparently a lot of people in high-powered jobs have, that it’s only a matter of time before ‘they’ find out.

I’m no good at being something I’m not so I just have to gulp, bite the bullet and carry on with the usual ravings my mostly non-existent readers have come to know ( if not love) me for. Anyway, as I noted on my Moodgarden blog (yes, there’s more of this over there under username ‘Stricken’ for anyone who just can’t get enough! You have to have a mood disorder and join first though!) I am narcissistic in the extreme. I am so ‘up’ myself that probably people are just struck dumb or incorrectly deduce that I don’t require their reflections or comments.

Anyway, back on Planet Earth…I am quite perky today (even more so now of course!) As I might have said before, this episode is nothing like previous ones. I have got to say it, all my efforts to treat the illness holistically, by means of yoga, meditation, careful diet (and veganism), exercise and a highly structured lifestyle HAVE paid dividends. I am really a transformed person. Listening to Mary J Blige ‘No More Drama’ on my Ipod and she is pretty much mirroring where I feel I’m at in my life. Soap operas, even real-life ones, have very limited appeal for me. They are just not nearly real enough. The kind of blogs that drivel on about MIL’s visit (Mother-in-Law for the uninitiated), OK, I’m sorry, they often seem to garner a lot more readers than I can muster, but, in Morrissey’s words ‘I was bored before I even began’.

The Soap of Zoe and her phantasmagorical inner and outer life is what fascinates me. OK I might have a job persuading anyone else to be equally interested but at least I’m levelling with you dear and most cherished readers.

But I’ve harassed you enough for one day. Take great care until the next time…Zoe.

Hello oh thankless blog!

Yes blog, you are a little thankless. All the literary efforts I pour out here and they are apparently hardly read let alone appreciated! It’s almost embarrassing how few readers I seem to have. What is more, blog, while we’re at it, sometimes you don’t even let potential readers access you. Why blog, why?

I seem destined to struggle on in almost total obscurity. And never to meet that Perfect Partner that I raved so psychotically about in my last entry.

Heard the song that goes ‘If you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with’? Well that is the story of my life. However I’m feeling a little old for that philosophy, and getting pickier all the time. My so-called psychosis doesn’t help. I daren’t tell you in bald terms what my biggest and most grandiose delusion is. Any readers that I’ve accidentally garnered would no doubt scuttle off in fright if I did. Let’s draw a veil.

I’ve developed a sort of tunnel vision in the course of this episode. I hardly look to left or right. There is very little pleasure in my life. OK, that’s part of depression. But the mania wasn’t any fun either. I’m pretty much completely anhedonic. I enjoy (sometimes) smoking a roll-up, eating and sleeping. The last, only because there is no consciousness. I don’t wake up depressed. I am still a morning person.

This episode has resulted in an almost complete personality change in many other ways though. I mean, smoking! After three years ‘clean’! Eating shedloads of sugar! After being Patrick Holford’s Number One disciple. Drinking coffee again…ooh how lovely it is to have the license to do that!

Still have my gym membership but not the physical or mental strength to get down there just yet. My life is still struggling to right itself, like one of those toys with weight in the bottom. However I did get to my yoga class yesterday and managed to do the whole practice which I was pleased about.

Still have the Crisis Team coming round which feels more like a duty I have to perform than something I actively take spiritual sustenance from. But they have acted in good faith throughout so I must return the compliment.

Am attending Dual Recovery Anonymous meetings which are more than a duty. However, do find going all the way into central London a bit of a trial to the nerves. Try to shelter behind the armour of my Ipod as best I can. Am simply overwhelmed by the utter futility of most people’s lives. Which is sort of a reversal of the usual depressive story…where it’s your own futility that overwhelms you most. I am still meekly waiting to inherit the earth…’if that’s all right with the rest of you’.

I know, I’m grandiose, psychotic, lacking in insight. There’s nothing you can tell me about that that I don’t know and worse, have to live with every day. Pity me, don’t judge I beg you! I have given up on fitting in. I never will. I’m not normal and believe me I really have given it my best shot.

Take care dear peeps. Love, Zoe.

Mama’s got a brand new bag…

Yeah, I spilt orange juice all over my last one (brown leather). This one suits me better so ‘bye-bye’. What can I tell you? Been sleeping a lot better.  Am cooking, eating better. My Ipod still helps me get through the days. Whivh are far too long. Only really happy when I’m asleep, hey, you know the drill.

This episode is different, so very different from previous ones. Still addicted to listening to music, whereas usually once I’m depressed I don’t want to know. Can laugh and smile with the right people. Don’t feel ugly and worthless most of the time.

I feel powerful. I know I am powerful. They say that’s the biggest aphrodisiac but maybe that’s just men because I’m finding it has the opposite effect. Can’t get a new man in my life for love or money. In the meantime Richard is a treasure. It’s just he’s only with me twice a week. When he leaves I plummet down again.

Tocay I plan on going to the Farmer’s Market to get some fresh local produce. Generally getting back into the old routine but minus the self-pressure to get a job etc. It doesn’t matter a tuppenny damn whether I work or not. Get back into my spiritual practice too. My fellowships. Keep lighting the candles, burning the incense and hope that Higher Power will have pity on me eventually and bring that new man into my life. The one who will be powerless to resist!

Love you…Zoe.