IAPT Stage 3 – wow

On Tuesday, I had a phone call I forgot I was getting.

“This is X from Scarborough IAPT, you’ve been referred for stage 3, yes? Can you make an appointment on Thursday?”

Fortunately(!) my other intense pain that is keeping me from working meant that yes, I was available. So off I went to see what was in store.

The lady I saw during level two told me level 3 would be much more intense, and she wasn’t wrong.

“What do you think your issue is?”

“What do you think caused them?”

“What do you do when your issues strike?”

“What was life like growing up?”

To be honest, I thought it was going to slide off into your typical therapy “so why do you hate your mother” schtick but it didn’t. We went into length about the bullying I received at school, the trust issues I have, how everything is worst case scenario with me, how everything I do has to be 100% right or it’s a complete failure. Everything that is mentally wrong with me will be addressed.

And you know what? It feels damn good.

Bring it on.


Liberation For The Massive

This past weekend, I was in Felixstowe visiting my very good friend Louisa.

The town is nice enough. It has a seafront, which is always a pleasant aspect to a town, and had enough to keep me occupied for my brief stay there. Plus, if you know the story of Louisa and my’s friendship, you know that any time together is good time. I love that girl unashamedly and she will ALWAYS be my favourite human (non-family at least.)

The time away helped me reassess some things.

(The following is not anything I wouldn’t say in a public forum, the involved parties know).

I’ve been feeling somewhat trapped just lately. Norma, whether intentional or otherwise, has made me feel guilty for trying to live life. If I go out without her, I get judgemental looks and sad faces.

The weekend away cemented the idea in my head that this isn’t healthy.

I’ve levelled things with her and we both know we need to spend some time apart. Not in a “we’re on a break” way, more that we need to leave the house and see other humans. You know, actually exist in the outside world. She’s agreed to this.

I need it, I can’t be a prisoner in my own life. I’ve never been a social butterfly but at least I knew I could leave the house without judgement.

Thank you for an awesome weekend Lou. You’re fantastic and I love you.

And thank you Norma for still being here when I got back. I love you too.

What the hell is wrong with me?

A few weeks back, I started being sick. A lot. I missed a fair bit of work because of it. I initially just put it down to my IBS, but when it didn’t sort itself out…aye. Worried. Worried enough to go to the doctors.

They asked for some blood, which I obliged with. It took a week to hear anything, and when I did, I got this.

“The doctor would like to make an appointment to see you”

Fuck. What have they found? Is it bad? Will it be curable? Will I be on medication for it for life?

Six days of that. Hell. Pure hell. I’ve tortured myself over what might come up, and how it might affect or end my life.

Only to be told today:

“The blood was perfectly fine. In fact, the liver enzymes that were raised last year have lowered.”

So like most people, I was initially relieved. Which then turned into panic.

“Well, what have I got then?”

The closest guess they can make is that I had a stomach bug that played with my IBS. So that’s fun.

But is it just IBS? Or is it something else that hasn’t shown up yet?

Is this what my life is now? A long series of guesses? A never-ending stream of “we’re not entirely sure”?



Today, I dropped some dinner trays on one of my fingers. Not intentionally, but I did. It hurt.

Hey Liam, cool story bro, thanks for sharing.

Well thank you, jerkface hypothetical responder, I was getting to the point.

I have a lot of pain at the moment. In my stomach, in my knees, and the finger I caught today.

Pain is all I’m feeling.

Moments of happiness last seconds, if that. I don’t get upset much, I don’t feel alright, I don’t feel good. I don’t feel. Unless it hurts.

I’m worried.

I had some bloods taken a week or so ago. They’ve called me back in. I’m petrified. And I’m in pain.

And that scares me.

“Welcome to Boosting Your Self-Esteem”

Yesterday saw your protagonist taking another step to becoming a normal everyday human being, rather than this broken shell of a psychopath.

The title is the next step. Step two of three in Scarborough’s stellar (read:shite) mental health programme. I don’t know what step three is.

Six weeks of one-to-one sessions with the purpose of boosting my self-esteem and raising it to a level above that of “it wouldn’t matter if I was dead”.

I might sound sceptical, and I am a bit, but it’s a lot more suited to me than sitting in a room full of people learning how to cope with the stress of a bus being a bit late. I get the point of the stress relief course, but it wasn’t for me.

The activities in week one include listing all the positive traits I think I have. That starts and stops at “I can write.” I wrote an essay yesterday in three hours. I’m writing this in ten minutes. I have a lot of hockey writing I can point to. I can write. But apparently that’s not enough. So, a week of scratching my head and going…..”erm….maybe tha…no…hmm”.

Risk level: low. I wouldn’t go out of my way to kill myself.