Catastrophising

4 Mar 2019
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"Everything is a drama with her!" so said one good friend of mine about another. The context was a trail of woe that followed this mutual friend around. Nothing seems straightforward for this lady, and if you made the mistake of asking how she is, the stories of disaster could make a reasonably 'funny' sitcom... if you could see the funny side. She couldn't. Quietly, within the confines of my own thoughts, I echoed, "She could say the same about me!" My life has become that of a Drama Queen.

Some people seem to be unlucky. Almost cursed. I remember once wondering if it had been the time that a Gypsy lady had 'cursed' me for no apparent reason... perhaps she was just having a bad day. Or what about when I broke the mirror? I think it only logical that we should seek a reason for, a meaning for, or even a cause for the calamities that touch every life from time to time. "Why me?" we ask. Good question. Usually the wrong answer.

The truth, however, is that life isn't fair, and that it never has been. The sooner we accept that, the faster we have a chance at a revised form of happiness – based on better expectations. Very bad things happen to very good people. Human beings, on the other hand, impose fairness on the World, and the World is a better place for this imposition (consider the abolition of slavery, or our current just war against human trafficking.) When we can, we make it better. Eventually.

However, we can make it better even in the midst of tough times by refusing to the use the Super Power of the Drama Queen: Catastrophising!

Catastrophising – and I'm not sure if it's a real word – is a real phenomenon. It is the power to take a bad situation and blow it up out of all proportion. I had a cracking example recently. Through my own fault, I've had the 'bad luck' of losing the internet at the house. I used my payment card for a snack on the Friday, drove back from the office, and then couldn't find my card. I didn't have much fuel or energy so I decided not to drive back to the office to check. Of course, not having internet meant no way to check my bank to see if someone had found my 'lost' card and used it for all manner of nefarious purposes!

I then got food poisoning that wiped out not only me but also Penelope for two further days. This meant I was unable to verify how 'terrible' the situation was for four days! When you use the Super Power of Catastrophising, that's a lot of time to dream up the very worst possible scenarios about what might be happening!

This time, I decided to hang up my Super Hero Costume of 'Drama Queen' (The Tiara of Terror, and the Tutu of Tut-tut!) and just shrug, "Whatever!" I knew I'd be able to sort it out... eventually. That was quite a breakthrough, for me.

And guess what? The card was under some paperwork at the office. And I haven't died of food poisoning... yet!

Lex

A Moodscope member.

A Moodscope member.

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Comments

Lynzi

March 4, 2019, 5:53 a.m.

Good morning Lex; catastrophising is a go to in our house unfortunately. Good for you not letting it infect your thoughts and for managing to hang up your superhero costume, however fabulous it sounds!! Love, peace, sparkles; namaste, L ?

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 6 a.m.

Namaste, Lynzi x - love that costume. Hope you've got one too!

The Gardener

March 4, 2019, 4:07 p.m.

Is 'Namaste' new Moodscope greeting? Often moved from Namaste in India to 'G'dye' in Oz. Here, they do 'Bon' everything. Leaving a New Years Party at 5 a.m you are wished 'Bon fin de soiree' (what's left of it)

Maria

March 4, 2019, 5:17 p.m.

TG- you probably know that Namaste literally means "I bow to you". Here in America, as elsewhere, it has transformed into "The divine in me honors the divine in you" or some such equivalent.

Lex

March 5, 2019, 5:32 a.m.

OMG!

Sylvia

March 8, 2019, 10:47 p.m.

I am always over thinking that causes me a lot of stress. I find it difficult to look on the bright side, l feel trapped in a mind that is not functioning most of the time.

Lex

March 4, 2019, 6:11 a.m.

Folks, Friends, Moodscopers... no, I'm not turning into a drama... but I have recorded a gift for those of us who have trouble sleeping. It's an induction - hypnotic - to help you sleep. http://bit.ly/hypnosisforsleep The Script is from jbennette.com and is used with permission. The recording uses binaural beats - that strange warbling sound in the background - to encourage your brain to go into the right brainwave state. This only works with headphones. The recording is only for use where you can sleep undisturbed for hours - it could be dangerous if used elsewhere! I hope it helps some of us. x

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Maria

March 4, 2019, 5:09 p.m.

Thanks for the link Lex! I started to listen to it but stopped because I have a busy day and can't afford to go to sleep now, lol! There is a free phone app called Insight Timer that has a huge library of guided meditations. I listen to a sleep one every night.

Molly

March 4, 2019, 5:25 p.m.

I don’t usually have a problem sleeping lately but I had a quick listen of this link Lex, and it’s certainly something I will try xx

Lexi

March 4, 2019, 8:35 p.m.

I have massive trouble falling asleep at night. I will listen to this tonight. Thank you Lex!

Lex

March 4, 2019, 9:15 p.m.

Thank you, Maria, Molly, and Lexi... sweet dreams!

Susannah

March 11, 2019, 9:07 a.m.

Thank you, Lex. I had missed this last week. I have had a lot of issues around sleep, so will try this tonight.

Ach UK

March 4, 2019, 6:48 a.m.

Hi Lex, Thank you for your blog today. I can definately relate to the "C"syndrome! I think of Catastrophising as a great example of Negative CBT, along with Stalling and Positive Blindness. Especially prevalent in those "wee small hours" its jolly difficult to recognise and its fictions are quickly accepted as truths by tired and overwhelmed brains. Reversing its influences is jolly difficult and nipping it in the bum quickly is recommended. In the mode of " KISS " ; I think of catastrophising as a succession of "What Ifs" and the method of circumventing them as turning the "What ifs?" into the "So Whats ?". I'm glad you cut the catastrophising short and took off your Tiara and Tutu :)) Well done you. Thank you Lex. XX Ach.

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 7:16 a.m.

Thanks, Ach. Photo of me in said costume to follow... xx

Oli

March 4, 2019, 7:17 a.m.

Thanks Lex! I've just read what @Ach has written too which links a thought I had: spotting the thought patterns of catastrophising is much easier when you have a decent set of mindfulness skills. I get people new to the practice wonder what's the point of "sitting and doing nothing" every day -- but spotting catastrophising, *and not getting caught up in it*, is exactly the point of the practice. I also see catastrophising as a process of self-suggestion which feels automatic... so no prizes for guessing which cognitive process I suspect is involved there. I suspect dogs and lab rats don't do catastrophising, I suspect it's uniquely human and language based. Personally, I was very prone to catastrophising and still retain that proneness, however knowing the massively strong behavioural component, and the underlying pattern of getting caught up in self-suggestion helps me cope so much better than before. Thanks Lex :-)

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 11:33 a.m.

We humans to make matters complicated for ourselves, don't we, Oli?! Thanks for your insights.

Lexi

March 4, 2019, 8:40 p.m.

Ach UK and Oli - stopping the mind mid drama story. Coming back to the mat. That's my mantra. On and off the mat if I catch myself working up a drama that is Oscar worthy I tell myself "come back to the mat". That stops me right there and then I drop it. But so hard to catch it in the wee hours! xo

Mary Wednesday

March 4, 2019, 7:51 a.m.

Things are rarely as good as we hope or as bad as we fear. As we approach an important political event at the end of March, I am holding onto that thought.

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 11:34 a.m.

The future will be what we make it, won't it Mary? btw I'm coming your way in April - I wonder if I could squeeze in a session?

Maggie May

March 4, 2019, 8:06 a.m.

Hypochondria, internet access and catastophising equals additional work for A&E and grandparents.

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 11:35 a.m.

It certainly does, Jen!

The Gardener

March 4, 2019, 4:22 p.m.

I was going to accuse Lex of making word up, but no, it's on Google! Allied to CBT. Lots of people willing to advise you how to cope. I think my favourite Corporal Jones meets the bill 'Don't panic, Don't panic' then rush round like a headless chicken.

Lex

March 4, 2019, 9:16 p.m.

...and slap on a bit of "Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy"!

Ruth

March 4, 2019, 8:13 a.m.

I can do this, usually early hours of the morning when I want to sleep. I usually pray and give it to *** but I do find I am worrying over the smallest of things. Last night, it was something I said to someone last Thursday which came out completely wrong and sounded rude which wasn't meant. I expect the person, knowing them well, has completely forgotten about it, but I hadn't judging by the worry I had last night!

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 11:35 a.m.

The power of the imagination is a two-edged sword, Ruth, isn't it? May it serve us both more kindly.

Orangeblossom

March 4, 2019, 8:26 a.m.

Thanks for the great blog Lex. I found it very encouraging.Currently note-taking for “Thatcher, Reagan & The Legacy Of the 1980s.”. It was one that I was not looking forward to. However it is the last week & I’m not burning with rage. All the steam pouring out of my nose & ears hasn’t consumed me. Also I’m managing to read the abridged version of Mrs. Thatcher’s autiobiography with some interest. I downloaded a sample. I tried once and didn’t get very far. What I’m saying in a very roundabout way is that a situation isn’t as bad as we anticipate. But we all know this. I think that I’m starting conjunctivitis but in my weak eye so the situation could be worse.

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 11:37 a.m.

Hi Orangeblossom - I was struck by some interesting content in "The Luck Factor." In it, one of the secrets of resilience is exactly what you've modelled brilliantly in your comment - finding a 'it's not as bad as it could be' frame. You're a lucky genius!

Jul

March 4, 2019, 8:54 a.m.

Good morning Lex. So glad your catastrophising wasn't necessary and you found your card. A pilot once gave me a leaflet about fear of flying which detailed ways to overcome it. One of the things which has stuck in my mind was to stop catastrophising and picture myself walking off the plane at its destination. Each time I board a plane and for weeks beforehand I do catastrophise it's going to crash; it's my vivid imagination working overtime based on my nature and reading too much about plane disasters. Growing up, my family life was full of dramas and when life was peaceful, even now, I would create disasters or mini emergencies to make life seem normal for me. Catastrophising takes up a lot of mental energy. Thanks for reminding me Lex. I'm getting on a plane next Sunday; I should start imagining getting off the plane in Limoges (or making sure I have a Valium for the flight Lol!) Jul xx

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Molly

March 4, 2019, 10:45 a.m.

Hi Jul, I’m very much like you in needing some drama in my life because it’s what I was used to. I don’t think I purposely create it but I get bored without it. Hard to explain isn’t it, but I know where you are coming from! Flying doesn’t bother me too much unless I’m feeling very anxious but that’s not related to the plane crashing, more about being in a confined space I guess. I’ve become very nervous in cars especially on the motorway xx

Lex

March 4, 2019, 12:07 p.m.

Dear Jules and Molly, do you know about dissociation? This is where you distance yourself in your imagination and use a defensive barrier. For example, I have no intention of handling a Tarantula or Scorpion as some people do. Actually being in contact with a spider or scorpion is what we'd describe as (mad) and fully 'associated'. However, if there is a thick sheet of plate glass between me and these rather amazing creatures, I can bear to look at them - dissociated by the barrier and the distance. If you were to 'imagine' being protected by an impenetrable bubble, you could distance yourself from the experience. As a child, I enjoyed the adverts for ReadyBrek. It was called, "Central Heating for Kids," and in the adverts, the children had a warm glow around them on a cold day. They were protected from the cold. If you could imagine a protective 'aura' around you, it might just make a difference. Just a thought!

Molly

March 4, 2019, 12:44 p.m.

I like the sound of this Lex and will give it a try, it could work in quite a few situations couldn’t it. I remember those readybrek adverts! That’s a good example xx

Jul

March 4, 2019, 12:50 p.m.

Yes agree with Molly, this could work and I remember the Ready Brek adverts too! Would this protective aura work on a plane? I can imagine situations where it would work. Thanks Lex. JUlx

Molly

March 4, 2019, 1:47 p.m.

I think it could work Jul, although I would have the Valium as well lol xx

Jul

March 4, 2019, 1:54 p.m.

I'll try both!! xx

Sarah yellow rose

March 4, 2019, 9:02 a.m.

Hi Lex, thank you for your great blog today. Recently I cancelled a credit card only to find it ( when I wasn’t looking) under the bed! Another example was when we were trying to access slides on a memory stick for our speaker ( at a local meeting ) who got into a complete panic. It was only later when I tried again on my own, calmly that I got it to work. It was a good lesson for me because this made me realise how far I’ve come in terms of mental health. I was surprised how someone so highly qualified ( the speaker) was so reliant on technology, even though it really wouldn’t have mattered if they had just talked for 10 mins on the subject.

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 12:09 p.m.

Hi Sarah yellow rose... yes, I have the same surprise with 'professional' speakers who hide behind slides and who are phased when the projector or computer or USB stick fails them. Power corrupts and powerpoint corrupts absolutely! To be mentally strong enough to be able to stand firm without any external means of support is a powerful position to attain.

Zilpah

March 4, 2019, 10:30 a.m.

Hi Lex, I fell foul of catastrophising (yes it is a word) for many years culminating in a very bad few months. There were nights when I even returned to my workplace to check that the ridiculous chain of events I’d imagined while sitting alone hadn’t really resulted in a fire. Terrible times. One of the practical things that helped me to overcome my catastrophising (alongside some excellent therapy) was to write down in the notes on my phone each dreadful scenarios as it came to me, and then when I knew the true outcome to right that down too. Seeing a long long catalogue of catastrophes and then the reality the actually occurred helped to mean me off this horrible habit. The other thing that helped me was discovering that this is catastrophising and that many people do it. So thank you for sharing your example. I think that knowing we are not alone in what goes on in our minds is a powerful help in healing

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 12:11 p.m.

Hi Zilpah - this is so helpful. You've used an evidence-base to challenge the tyrant of Catastrophe! Such good advice. Not only are we not alone, we now have a shared strategy to overcome this. Thank you!

Zilpah

March 4, 2019, 1:23 p.m.

Thank you Lex for your positive response. I’m always anxious about telling people what’s worked for me and I’m well aware that everyone finds their own way through tough times. If my experience helps just one person that would be wonderful

Maria

March 4, 2019, 5:20 p.m.

Hi Zilpah - thank you for your oh so helpful comment!

Zilpah

March 4, 2019, 9 p.m.

I’m glad you found it helpful Maria

Molly

March 4, 2019, 11:20 a.m.

Hi Lex, I am the worst for this! I always think the worst! I make a story up in my head and convince myself it’s true. Or I think someone is out to get me (total paranoia usually). Then like Ruth, worrying about something I had said, or hadn’t said! The list goes on. Thanks for your blog, as Zilpah said above, it really does help to know we are not alone with these thoughts. One more thing, why didn’t you cancel your card? Molly xx

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 12:13 p.m.

I think I didn't cancel it, Molly, because I knew deep down it would be OK. I've been hacked and cloned in the past, and it all worked out OK in the end. Now I have an app that can suspend the card with a click! Clever Barclays! Let's hope we can learn to make up better stories in our heads, eh? xx (and have a sensible place to keep the card! "A place for everything and everything in its place."

Molly

March 4, 2019, 2 p.m.

Ah yes like that girl on the bus in the advert. Technology is moving too fast! Usually when I put something in a sensible place, that’s when I can’t find it :-) xx

The Gardener

March 4, 2019, 12:05 p.m.

Do nervous travellers come under your heading Lex? One really wonders why some people subject themselves to such a trauma at all. Not planes crashing, but agitation about 1st transport (to taxi or airport) infecting their chauffeur (often me). Hovering in front of departure board - gate might change -will be robbed. My b-in-law, as an important scientist has travelled a lot, nearly had to stop as his nerves provoked IBS.

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The Gardener

March 4, 2019, 12:09 p.m.

My catastrophes are purely domestic - floods - own fault. Goody, have a pump system for waste water - have to unplug pump, put special cleaner down sinks, wait two hours, re-plug and rinse away. Did all this, plugged in hoover instead of pump then turned washing up machine on - flooded kitchen, only finished two months before. Flood disasters always occur when teeming with rain as well, so you can't open all doors. Gives neighbours a good laugh though.

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 12:14 p.m.

Ah but that's a genuine catastrophe, dear Gardener! You sound like you're in control of a very difficult situation. My hat off to you (and my wellies on, if I were nearer!) Do you Air BandB your properties?

The Gardener

March 4, 2019, 4:04 p.m.

Lex, thankfully, I am a one woman house. Love having friends to stay, but commercially, no thanks. Every other house down our road is B & B, Workmen demolishing shop they consume quantities of sugar in coffee and biccies, but they work damned hard. They have discovered 'torchis', cow dung plaster I think, our house must have been five in middle ages - I am huddled in tidy bit. 7th house, all in state of disrepair - 7 ages of man, equals 7 lots of dust. 11th C church going through it as well.

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Maria

March 4, 2019, 5:36 p.m.

Thanks for another great blog Lex! It's taken a while but through mindfulness techniques I've stopped catastrophising. Worrying doesn't change the outcome of anything, only causes much angst. It's amusing, when I first read your blog this morning I thought you mentioned dandelions. Maybe because they can pop up anywhere and spread far and wide like worrisome thoughts?! Funny thing is that up until the 1800s people would pull grass out of their lawns to make room for dandelions and other useful “weeds” like chickweed, malva, and chamomile. It's all about perspective... Sending love and light to all!

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 5:59 p.m.

Oh, I LOVE that, Maria! I love daisies and dandelions!

Lex

March 4, 2019, 5:58 p.m.

https://soundcloud.com/lex-mckee/catastrophising-and-the-drama-queen-mixdown for those of you who'd appreciate me doing a reasonable Kenny Everett impression... oh, and a stab at Ray Winston...

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Valerie

March 4, 2019, 6:46 p.m.

A subject very dear to my heart,or should I say, something I know a lot about.I really take my hat off to you,managing to achieve a philosophical attitude over the mislaid card.Last year I tried to do a routine online bank transaction,only to find I was locked out of my account. I waited 50 minutes to speak to someone,and then ended up feeling worse when she could find no explanation,or tell me if money had vanished.Her manner I thought was odd,worried me even more.She told me I would have to go to my bank first thing next morning.So now I'm wondering,do they think I am a criminal? (told you I was good at this) I was awake all night. They just needed me to change some passwords in person.I suspect there had been some breach of general security.It was weeks before I could bring myself to bank online again. ***

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Molly

March 4, 2019, 8:39 p.m.

I’m surprised that you had to actually go to the bank to change passwords, I thought everything could be dealt with on line these days, especially passwords. Maybe you put it in wrong several times? What bank? I will make sure I avoid it.

Valerie

March 4, 2019, 10:08 p.m.

I know.They also issued a new security number,which apparently had to be done in person.It was Lloyds.I did wonder if something had happened that affected others as well as me.It was not a mistake I had made.I was so grateful no money was taken out.xx

Molly

March 4, 2019, 11:47 p.m.

I’ve used Lloyd’s all my life with no problems. Maybe a glitch in the system then. This waiting on the phone has become stupid. I had to make a phone call today and it was 40 minutes to get through and then they couldn’t tell me what the problem was so said someone would call me back at the end of the week! My tummy was in knots xx

Lex

March 5, 2019, 5:35 a.m.

Hi Valerie, I am saddened by the lack of vision of the banks. I have had outstanding service from local Barclays banks, and now they are closing them all. I feel so sorry for all the team members who have given such great support to me over the years. As for your anxieties about online banking, many of us share them. May Community Banking with real people in real buildings become the new norm.

Valerie

March 5, 2019, 9:15 a.m.

Hi, Spock has his business account with Barclays,and speaks highly of them.The idea of banks sharing a big building sounds great.x

Lexi

March 4, 2019, 8:46 p.m.

A great blog today Lex! I gleamed a lot of helpful ideas from everyone! Thank you! xo

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Lex

March 4, 2019, 9:16 p.m.

You're welcome, Lexi! xo

Mambo

March 4, 2019, 11:39 p.m.

Pak Naz Nov All daisies Lexi : D

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Lex

March 5, 2019, 5:36 a.m.

I pick 'em!

Mambo

March 5, 2019, 12:42 p.m.

Mambo the dog. From dog-fights to cat-fights. It is raining 'dogs and cats.' To "CAT-astrophise" is realistic! To be free with freedom. "CatastroFREE". You pick consonants and vowels like on 'Countdown Conundrums' (8 out of 10 cats tv programme), I pick instead SONGS, for example The Spice Girls' song "Mama", and I have been listening to the lyrics closely which say!; - "So now, I see through your EYES (iiiiiii's) -Opthalmology department/ I never thought you would become the friend I never had/ 'MAM-A' my friend.' MAM-bo. Enjoy 'Shrove TUESDAY' 5/3/19 !! : D From DAISY-TUESDAY. x

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Nicco

March 5, 2019, 5:25 p.m.

Thanks for a great blog, Lex. Life was always a drama and a crisis for my parents when I was growing up & i think that has had an impact on my adult life which seems to be getting worse but could also be exacerbated because my health's not good atm. I'm relapsing in my physical health which is having a bearing on my mental/emotional health & therefore the things I usually worry about seem much worse. For instance I worry daily how I will cope when my 93yr old father passes away as I am worried I won't be able to cope physically & emotionally with all it entails, especially clearing the house (which is where I was born & grew up & holds many unhappy memories of abuse). I have a neurological condition which affects me physically & mentally which isn't always apparent to others so on the days when I can actually get out & about I don't look I'll at all (apart from needing a walking stick, mostly for balance). My father doesn't seem to understand this (though he has all his marbles & gets around better than I do) so has done nothing over the years to help & has done nothing to sort his living accommodation, & of course he now says it's all too late. So it'l all be down to me to sort out all the accumulated rubbish in the garage & loft. Sorry if it seems selfish but I just know I won't be able to measure up to what others expect me to do & i know that'l put a huge strain on them. Husband's not at all well atm either which has brought home the fact that I cannot manage alone - I can't look after myself very well so find it really hard to look after someone else - it's the 'flu which has gone to his chest (he suffers from asthma so I'm very worried about that - I had a friend who had it & it went to her chest & she died of pneumonia). I'm also very afraid of catching it myself - I had it this time last year & it pretty much wiped me out for most of the year & i can't afford to get any worse than I am now or I really will be fit for nothing & no good to anyone. Our daughter is very busy working hard & trying to find time to be with her new partner, & doesn't seem to understand that we are both getting older & could do with some help now and again. The mornings are the worst as I wake up shaking & not being able to move with the neurological thing until it all unseized, & with a terrible sinking feeling that I'm still here & nothing's changed & i don't know how much longer it will be like this & things will probably only get worse. I'm sorry for sounding like such a moaning minnie but I really do feel at a low ebb atm & like everything's beyond my control with my stupid body & brain. I'm trying not to catastrophise but it's hard just now.

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Lex

March 5, 2019, 8:18 p.m.

Hi Nicco, this is not catastrophising but rather a highly valued outpouring of your heart to a community that cares. (Catastrophising is exaggerating problems that aren't really there in the first place. You've got big issues that you'll need help facing. It's OK to ask for help, and it is very OK to share your heart here. I'm sending positive vibes and the knowledge that we are listening...

Caroline Ashcroft Moodscope

March 5, 2019, 6:10 p.m.

Hi Nicco, so sorry you are feeling so down at the moment. I'm sure you husband being so unwell hasn't helped at all. How are you supposed to look after someone else when you're not well yourself! Hopefully he'll be up and about again soon. You mustn't worry about what happens when your father passes away - what's the point until it happens - and who is going to judge you on how you cope with the situation? I doubt if anyone will. If you can't clear out his house there are people that can do that for you. Have you ever asked your daughter for any help at all? Maybe she doesn't realise you need it but would be happy to do something for you. I know she has her own life to live, but she may actually like to be asked if you need some help. You need to stop trying to cope with everything on your own. Hope it all improves for you very soon. Carolinex

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Lex

March 5, 2019, 8:19 p.m.

Sometimes asking for help brings out the best in others. After all, doesn't it feel great to know you can help someone? It's your turn to receive x

Sarah yellow rose

March 5, 2019, 7:10 p.m.

Hi Nicco, after my Mum died I spent 3 months every day clearing her house with no help from my Dad who had moved into a smaller property. I thought it would be best to get it out of the way rather than have it hanging over me. In hindsight it actually made me ill. So I really should have left it then others ( siblings) would have done it. So put your health first. X

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Lex

March 5, 2019, 8:19 p.m.

I agree x

Nicco

March 5, 2019, 10:22 p.m.

Thank you Lex, Caroline & Sarah yellow rose for your kind words of encouragement & comfort, & for your quick responses for which I am most grateful. I have asked my daughter for help lots if times but she ignores it & carries on as if nothing's wrong & all is ok, which could be her way of coping, I suppose. Perhaps she'l realise sometime soon. Husband managed to get up for a while this evening & I've told him he's having the rest if the week off work (he's semi-retired & commutes to London 3 days a week). I think it's just made me realise just how much I have to depend on him which really upset & frightened me even more, (as well as the usual fear of the weird symptoms I get from the ME/MS or whatever it is I've got - burning, stabbing pains in my head just before a depressive attack are the most frightening ones) - I'm having to be patient waiting to see a neurologist - patience has never been a strong attribute for me & I know it won't be a quick thing & will be the next part of my journey but I've been waiting 45yrs for answers so am naturally a bit impatient but I guess a few more months won't hurt. I'll keep you informed of progress if I may? Something I do catastrophise about is I lost a boyfriend to a brain tumour, then later my fiance when I was 17 - he was 19 & killed in a road accident & his injuries sadly & horribly involved decapitation which his father asked me to withhold from his mother which I have done all these years, so I think I've spent the last 40yrs waiting for something to happen to the person who became & is still my husband (as everything goes in threes) so it's hard to remain calm & positive when he's ill & not let my mind run away with potential scenarios. When I'm relatively well I cope so much better with this stuff but it doesn't take much to tip the balance. Thank you again for your support & for my being able to 'talk' here - I feel I will sleep a bit easier tonight. x

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