I watched Have I got News For You on Dave and now it's QI XL. I'm back in the kitchen, sharing quite a small dining chair with a cat, who seems not to realise that he's not wanted, but I haven't the heart to push him off. He must have read that over my shoulder as he's just jumped down, leaving me more comfortable. I've just had my daily Berocca - fizzy tablet with vitamins and minerals in it - to counter my bad diet. I also take turmeric as an anti inflammatory, which seems to help with my shoulders. The lorazepam isn't making much of a difference, but I'll give it time.
I'm still having trouble opening my letters - there's a pile of them, unopened, on the table, and I can't quite muster up the courage to deal with them. None of them looks sinister, but you never know - I might have to do something in answer to one of them, and I can't face the task. But they leer at me, nevertheless. I might ask HT to give me a hand with them tomorrow afternoon, as I need to do something to break the curse.
I have a friend in London whom I haven't seen for a while - we were on a charity committee together many years ago. She was diagnosed as bipolar after only one episode by a private psychiatrist at the Priory in London. She was prescribed lithium at 1000mg a day, which is a massive dose, and which she still takes. I assume she has the regular blood tests needed to make sure the levels are not dangerous. (I was on lithium and hated it - it took away my personality) Anyway, she hasn't had an episode since, and that was 25 years ago, so I wonder about her diagnosis. When I was so ill in the 90s, she was very concerned. However, she constantly bullied me because she wanted me to go private, which I refused to do. She kept saying I needed a second opinion, which I didn't - I'm classically bipolar and was easy to diagnose. I'm sure she meant well, but it just made me angry. She and her London friends believed passionately that private medicine was better, because one paid for it. I didn't agree and I still don't agree - private psychiatrists only see the worried well and are not on the front line. They are quick to diagnose celebrities with bipolar disorder, and it's now a fashion accessory - which undermines the very serious nature of the illness. 25% of people with bipolar kill themselves.
The long and the short of it was that I completely refused to be bullied into going private. She has never had another episode -- she puts that down to the lithium, but I think it's because she isn't actually bipolar. She didn't get admitted to hospital - I've had 24 admissions. Maybe she has bipolar lite and I have bipolar heavy - but no one with the diagnosis that I know has remained stable for 25 years. All of us get ill from time to time. And to top it all, she has lost all her hair and has to wear wigs - thanks to lithium.
That wasn't meant to be a rant against all private medicine - just psychiatry. I may be lucky, but on the whole I have had the best care possible from the NHS - look at how HT are keeping me out of hospital, for example. I can email my psychiatrist to discuss my drugs. I am visited by my CPN even when I'm well, just to keep an eye on me.
I spent 16 years in the RAF defending the Free World , then got bunged out unceremoniously for being bipolar. I and was subsequently diagnosed with PTSD. Funny old world, isn't it?