I guess this first post has to start somewhere so I’ll start with the idea that I feel like a bit of a copycat by starting a blog. A couple of my friends have been posting on here for a variety of different reasons and it seems to help them so I thought I’d give it a try!
Ok so the reason I’ve felt the need to vent, a mixture of confusion, frustration and wanting to stop hiding my problems. The black dog of depression has been looming over me for as long as I can remember though when I was younger I didn’t understand that that was what it was and didn’t dare tell anyone about how I was feeling. It finally came to a head in a monumental fashion when I was diagnosed with Relapsing Remitting Multiple Sclerosis (RRMS), or as I prefer to refer to it ‘The Monster’ and I was swallowed by the abyss of depression and anxiety to the point where I left my job and hid from the world spending the majority of my time contemplating suicide as I dare not leave the house and blamed myself for all that had happened.
At this point I could no longer deny what was happening and though I still couldn’t face telling my friends and family about it, I would burst into tears each time my MS nurse or consultant asked me how I was doing and was told (in the nicest way by my MS nurse bless her) to go and get myself some help. The GP I was using at the time was worse than useless and the counsellor had just qualified and was terrified by the prospect of dealing with me but luckily the MS service in Leeds has a Liason Psychiatrist who comes in, so I got the help I needed though finding the right version took some doing (I may cover that later).
By this point I had moved back in with my parents and could survive without leaving the house for days on end. I used my physical problems as excuses for not doing anything that would mean human contact (something I’m still guilty of doing on occasion) and slowly became worse to the point where suicide was a very real and ever present idea, stock piling medication that I knew I had reacted badly to and trying to figure out a way that would actually work that would mean no one I cared about would have to be the one that found me.
Eventually I was put onto an AD that worked and though I couldn’t say I was happy again it evened me out enough to make the most of the counselling I was now receiving. I could see a light at the end of the tunnel, I had found a forum of other MSers who quite literally saved my life on those dark nights where the abyss threatened to swallow me (http://www.mssociety.org.uk/forum/1213) and decided that now was the time to do what I had wanted to do for many years and get another dog…I had the time and I still had the use of my legs most of the time why not?!
He was the best thing I ever did, my Toby, my little four legged counsellor who got me out of the house and gave me a reason to live and continues to do so to this day when the world begins to look dark again.