Joy lies in the fight, in the attempt, in the suffering involved, not in the victory itself


Thursday, September 3, 2009

when one's heart is in the way

I had a phone call from Dr A this morning, wondering why I hadn't shown up for my 8:30am appointment. Because I thought it was at 3pm, I replied, truthful and embarrassed, with a part of me thrilled to have (for the first time) demonstrated behaviour outside the "acceptable". I've read so many comments about psychologists and psychiatrists not wanting to take on Borderline patients, for a lot of reasons, one of which is that they can be unreliable and cancel appointments, reschedule appointments, leave early, arrive late, in an attempt to manipulate their doctors. Or maybe they just wrote down the wrong time in their diary. It can happen! It was weird, to hear Dr A's slightly stern and questioning tone, almost apprehensive about what state he would find me in. As if I must be bed-ridden and avoiding, or molten with melancholy, unable to face him. I'm not sure if I'm disappointed or relieved to actually be just forgetful and inaccurate with my diary.

I was happy to not have to go to therapy today, not because I was any of the thing listed above, but simply because I usually don't make appointments for Thursdays. Thursday is my one day off during the working week, and I love it with a passionate intensity usually reserved for...well...I don't know what, but I used to be passionate and intense about things other than time off from work lol. These days, I just like to have my own timetable, and not have to be anywhere or see anyone. Even now I am non-avoiding, and trying to be interactive with the world, I leave Thursdays alone. The potential of them stretches out in front of me like the most inspiring and wonderful blank canvas - even though I usually just watch TV or go have coffee with my stepdad and nanna at the local shopping centre.

One of the reasons I was happy to avoid Dr A is the eternal question of WHAT TO WEAR. I have three distinct wardrobes, the Manic (push-up bras, heels, lowcut tops, dangly earrings), the Barely Functioning (track pants, sweats, anything shapeless and stretchy, preferably dark colours, greasy hair in a scrunchy) and my current wardrobe of somewhere inbetween. Inbetween is a work in progress, and I usually have to decide if I should wear a hat (which I like to do, fashion-wise), in case Dr A thinks it's because I am depressed and haven't washed my hair. I have to decide whether to wear makeup (haggard and washed out versus trying too hard and/or over-activated), whether to wear sneakers and jeans (casual or giving up?), or a flattering top and skirt (trying to transfer/crack on?). I know for a fact that how I present myself as a psychiatric patient is something that is noticed, and probably recorded and analysed. I know, I know, paranoid much? But, it's common sense to think that a shrink would take stock of my physical state as well as my mental one.

As always, as with every damn thing in my life, I over think and over stress. I can't say I lose sleep over the question (WHAT TO WEAR), but I definitely spend time on it. So after hearing from Dr A, and getting the reprieve, I happily put on my favourite baggy jeans, a cute pink shirt, and my fur-lined pink Crocs. This afternoon, we're heading to the shops for a coffee. And for just a moment or two, I imagine that this is what happiness feels like.

(Thanks to Tori for today's blog title, from Moment in Time)


Just Be Real said...

Powerful words, especially in your last sentence of enjoying your afternoon and getting a glimpse of happiness.

Even though I cannot understand the full magnitude you go through with being Borderline, I hurt for you dear one.

I am always #2 the barely functional with the clothe department when I go see my t.

Thank you for sharing dear.... blessings....

Anonymous Drifter said...

It's true, psychiatrists make note of what you're wearing. Mine will comment when I look schlepped out or if I'm dressed up. I remember reading a report that was written about me by a doctor and in it was a description of what I was wearing and whether it was appropriate.

Wandering Coyote said...

Hmmmm...I never really put a lot of thought into what I wear to the shrink. And crocs come in a fur-lined variety? Who'd've thunk it?

Jena said...

I have thought about what to wear to the pdoc. I know she would notice because I consistently dress up. I always look "put together". I don't leave unless my hair and makeup are perfect. If I show up there in a sweatshirt or without makeup, she would probably wonder what was wrong.

Day to day, I still have huge wardrobe problems. I have lots of clothes but I always feel like I never have enough clothes! Grr!

Pdocs do notice appearance but only for barely a mili-second and then they move onto the rest of their many mili-assessments as they listen to you. As they get to know you, they notice your appearance less and less.

sarah said...

I understand over thinking about stuff and worrying what someone may think about me. I hate that I do that because it drives me nuts. Sarah

Lady_Amanda said...

I know what you mean about what to wear, but it was more before I was diagnosed. I believe I had some sort of mental illness before I was diagnosed. I know the schizophernia came when I was nineteen, but I also have boderline personality disorder and I think that had gone undigaonsed and hidden all throughout high school. Anyway, I felt like I didn't deserve to wear pretty things. I just wore plain, drab clothes. Now I get so many complaiments on what I wear.

I hope you had a nice day at the coffee shop.


Anonymous said...

The Barely Functioning is my standard of dress most days unless I am going anywhere where I think I am likely to bump into anyone I know... and then I make a slight effort... or I make more of an effort for Doctors appointments and now college... but I like the the Barely Functioning wardrobe is comfy, better still is if I can stay in my PJ’s all day!