Filling Holes

I feel lost without the space where I once sat
And the easy way I used to be able to chat
About so much that was bothering me
Dealing with it all in my now absent therapy

I’m now on a waiting list; I hope a place comes soon
Feelings and sentiments are confusingly strewn
What to do with all this time that goes so slowly by
Waiting for a new assessment; I hope I qualify

I miss the reassurance that I could cope
I like to think I can, and I still have that hope
I must find other means with which to fill my days
Emotion, when choked back, finds other ways

I’ve found myself with lots of empty holes to fill
I somehow have the energy; I need to find the will
Thought I’d visit a workshop to try my hand at art
A brand new shiny hobby I could possibly start

Wednesday night, I’m going to circle drumming
Listen to guitars in the next room gently strumming
Beating the drums will get pent-up feelings out
Dispelling anxious tension, I have no doubt

I don’t need to be perfect; just try to keep the beat
It’s easy to catch on to; no need to be discreet
It’s about celebrating life and having lots of fun
I’m passionate about it, and I’m not the only one

Thursday afternoons, I’ll go out picking litter
Even when the weather is absolutely bitter
I’m with a group of people; wouldn’t dare to go alone
Filling council bags with rubbish that’s been thrown

Papers, tickets, fag ends scattered in the park
It keeps us very busy until it’s almost dark
Doing something positive to while away the time
As out of my despair, I’m slowly learning to climb.


Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash

My Therapy – The End and The Beginning

As some of you will know, I had my last therapy session with my therapist, Chris, this afternoon. I’m not going to say it wasn’t tough because it was. We talked about what progress I’d made, even when I felt I wasn’t making any. We spoke about my poetry and whether I was going to continue writing. I am, naturally. I NEED to write – it’s the breath from my soul, and I would be lost and speechless without it. After I got home, admittedly in floods of tears, I wrote this poem to clear my mind and express my thoughts.

I’m thinking of taking a short break – not from writing, but, just for a while, from trying to keep up with all the blogs I follow (and that’s a lot) because I need some headspace to take stock of what I’m feeling, what I need and where I want to go from here. I will still be here and will, at least, try to read some blogs when I’m able to. I hope you will all understand.

Thank you so much to each of you who have been beside me and supported me through such a difficult few months. I’m eternally grateful. I’ll be back before too long.

With my love, Ellie Xx 💗🤍💗

~~~

My last session left me feeling distraught
I’m not being brave like I know I ought
Just before leaving, I asked for a hug
The answer was no, and I felt like a mug

She did, momentarily, hold my hand
Just briefly, though, as hugging was banned
I thought that this was so very kind
It calmed my heart and soothed my mind

I duly filled out the last questionnaire
To see, on the whole, how well I’d faired
I could see my progress, and more than a bit
I was somewhat surprised; I have to admit

Now, I have to wait for quite some time
I’ve got an awful long way to climb
I won’t be with Chris, but someone new
I hope I can bond with that person, too

She said it’ll be months before I’m seen
I’m wondering what I can do in between
I’m trying to find some way to cope
without completely losing all hope

I owe it to Chris, and I owe it to me
Not to turn this day into a tragedy
I hope I’ll be able to continue to write
It helps me to battle, and it helps me fight

I’m debating whether to take time out
To let myself fully get over this bout
I want to write, but less time to read
Right now, I have to do what I need.

“The last time always seems sad, but it isn’t really. The end of one thing is only the beginning of another.”

― Laura Ingalls Wilder, These Happy Golden Years

(Photo by Rowan Freeman on Unsplash)




An Alternate New Year’s Day

I know it’s New Year, and much joy abounds
but I’m full of despair, and it’s really profound
I’m trying to enter into the spirit of things
but I know this week is carrying the sting

Last night, bells rang, and glasses were clinked
I sat here alone, and all I could think
was the fear inside of me is here to stay
It filled me with utter and complete dismay

At Christmas time, I had my family here
and just for a while, it allayed all my fears
The children were great; I was thankful to see
Then, darkness descended, crippling me

I’m trying to hang on to a morsel of hope
when the whole of me is fighting to cope
I feel like my world will collapse forever
as my therapy ends; our relationship severed

I’ve written a letter to say thank you so much
I’m longing for a hug or a gentle touch
I know it’s unlikely; it’s not meant to be
Boundaries are there for Chris* and for me

I’m dreading Wednesday coming this week
I can’t see a future, not even a peek
My body is shaking; my head full of fear
The feeling of grief rises up to appear.


* Chris is my therapist/counsellor (until Wednesday)




NOTE: Forgive me a while if I can’t read your writing
I love you all, but I’m tired of the fighting
.

(Photo by Danil Aksenov on Unsplash)

A Bitter Pill

I cannot think; I cannot write
I can only see the end in sight
I cannot read the blogs I follow
Keep saying that I will tomorrow

My brain’s in autopilot mode
I just can’t carry this hefty load
My counselling has nearly ended
And yet, my heart still hasn’t mended

I’m losing C., my therapist
She’s going to be so sorely missed
Desperation is setting in
Fear like shark’s teeth on my skin

I’ve just got two days left to attend
I know that I am reaching the end
What will there be left of me?
An empty vessel is all I’ll be

The holidays just two weeks ahead
With jolly Santa, dressed in red
It’s such a struggle again this week
Where do I find the comfort I seek?

My heart beats fast and faster still
As I swallow down this bitter pill
I really don’t know how I’ll cope
I’m trying not to give up hope.



(Photo by Maddi Bazzocco on Unsplash)

FOR GRAHAM J.
A neighbour died two doors away
I only found out yesterday
He was a husband, friend and dad
Mourning him and feeling sad.


RIP Graham J.



Raw

My heart is still heavy, but I’m wanting to write
I’ve opened my ears and sharpened my sight
I’m trying my best to keep trudging along
Not to do anything drastic or wrong

Spent the weekend with the kids and my son
I’ve let go of the thoughts of firing the gun
Thanks to my friends here for sticking by me
Without all of you, I’d doubt I’d still be

I’m busy this week, which might just be good
Not really up to it, but know that I should
Still don’t feel able to read a lot
My stomach just feels full of knots

Christmas, for me, is a lonely time
But, I guess I’ll have quiet to pen a rhyme
Lost my Mum on the 30th of December
During the holidays, it’s tough to remember

I’ve still got an awful long way to go
The process is still incredibly slow
I’m dreading my therapy, with the end being near
January the fourth, I’m still full of despair

Before that time comes, there’s a three-week break
The thought of this makes me a physically ache
With the end being nigh, and that’ll be that
Somebody else will sit where I once sat

After that, I have to wait on the list
My counsellor will be so sorely missed
Everything is exposed and so raw
Will it be like this forevermore?

Just to let you know, I’m taking things slowly with getting back to reading and commenting and am limiting myself to just a few blog posts a day for the time being. I’m missing all my regular bloggers, but am doing the best that I can. I wanted to write something today and will probably continue to do so as the days go by because it helps me to process my feelings. I’ve got a very busy few days coming up (unusual for me), so please bear with me. Thank you to all of you, my readers and regular bloggers, for having faith in me and for your kind patience.

Love and Hugs, Ellie Xx
💙💙💙



Cutting Some Slack

Sitting here blankly, staring at the wall
Asking myself why I’m still here at all
Only two days ago, laughing and joking
Anguish has returned, prodding and poking

I’ve been making such effort all day today
Holding in misery and fearful to say
Just when I thought it’ll all be okay
Depression decided to come out to play

Keep my head in the clouds, feet on the floor
Hoping joy will return to knock on the door
Fighting the sadness, I’m not giving in
Not knowing how or where to begin

Tired though I am; I’ve got to keep running
Fighting off memories; keep the good coming
Therapy fading and slipping away
Making the most of each session, each day

I’m trying so hard again not to lose hope
Nearly evening now, and it’s tough to cope
How do I start to cut me some slack?
Come on, start climbing; no looking back.





Image by Dr StClaire from Pixabay



Little Boxes

Tie it up in little boxes with a ribbon and a bow
Tuck it all away inside, so nothing is on show
What to do with all the trauma creeping through my brain
Without support, where can I stuff down this amount of pain?


Secure those feelings firmly behind closed cupboard doors
Hide away from peeping eyes; they’re not wanted anymore
I thought I might be winning; I’d almost passed the post
Having to lock it up again while I haven’t got a host*


C* said the time has come now for me to put it all away
Leave sleeping dogs to lie rather than come out to play
Waiting for the next in line could be a year or more
Counting down the days while my brain keeps the score


The bonds we built between us were kind but very strong
Boundaries as they should be, respectful; nothing wrong
I should be feeling tougher, but my heart and soul cry out
I should have trust in myself, but no, I’m full of doubt


She said I could leave notes for the one who’s coming next
Just in case my mind’s in hiding and my memories repressed
I’m dreading the goodbye day; I mustn’t make a fuss
I’ll just be left with me alone and not the both of us.

NOTE: This poem is about a conversation I had with my counsellor this week in reference to my counselling coming to an end. She was suggesting that I try not to explore my childhood trauma too deeply in the few weeks we have left for fear of it becoming overwhelming again, and then having no one to process this with. She described it as putting all the trauma memories in a box until I see the next counsellor, whoever that is going to be. The waiting time could be up to a year. I can’t lie and say I’m not terrified because I am.

I’m so very grateful for all the support I’ve had from my blogging and real-life friends regarding alternative ways of finding low-cost therapy. I’m still searching this out, but at the same time, the thought of starting all over again with someone new is extremely daunting. Time will tell …

Love Ellie xx 💙

(* C and host refer to my counsellor)


(Image source – Pexels Free Images)

Staring at Walls

A sense of numbness resides in my brain.
protecting me from the constant, repeating pain
of losing not a loved one but someone I treasure
whose help and support have been words I could measure

Six weeks of sessions left may sound like a lot
but from my side of the fence, it feels like it’s not
as my mind takes over and makes all the rules
I still dissociate and find myself staring at walls

I go elsewhere in my head to escape the trauma
that exists in my core with me trapped in the corner
with him calling the shots; the bastard, the shit
I’m rarely foul-mouthed, but he deserves all of it

I must try my best with the short time I have left
Try not to melt or disappear when feeling bereft
The time will go quickly; then, they’ll be no more C*
I wonder and worry how much they’ll be left of me

If I find someone new; if I get on the long list
I’ll still wish I was with C*; she’ll be so sorely missed
It won’t be the same as when I first started out
Will I be able to trust again? Right now, I’m in doubt


Now I’m counting the minutes, the hours and the days
like a kindergarten game or a new nursery craze
There’s so much of me still needing to mend
Who will I finally be if I ever get to the end?

*C – Counsellor

Image source – Photo by Aron Visuals on Unsplash

The Day Before

TODAY IS THE DAY BEFORE. It’s the day before I see my counsellor (C). She was away last week, so I’ve had to wait two long, painful weeks for an answer. Tomorrow is the day C tells me whether I can continue to see her after my last session, which is due on the 21st of December this year. Up until now, my therapy has been free under the council-funded Eating Disorders service, where I got six months of treatment, for which I’m very grateful.

However, now I cannot get any funding to continue seeing C under the general health team at that counselling organisation. It’s not just that, but there is a waiting list of ten months to even be considered. I can afford a little, but not the average fee for counselling, which is in the region of £50 – £60 per session. On the improbable off chance that C can continue with me without the ten-month wait, I will have to find the money. As it is, I struggle to make ends meet, and because of the UK cost of living crisis, I can’t even afford to have any heating on this winter. Being cold is miserable, but I’ll put up with it if it means I can continue to see C. I’m counting the hours and minutes until I go for my session tomorrow. I feel absolutely sick with worry.

All that aside, I have also lost three people this week (not through deaths, thankfully.) Their losses have been a blow, nevertheless. I had a Befriender from the Hospice who had phoned me every Friday – we’ve been chatting for nearly a year – just day-to-day stuff, like friends. She called me on Friday to say this was her last call as she was leaving the service to work with her daughter.

The same day, I had a call from my lovely pharmacy assistant, who’s been dispensing my medication for the last ten years, and whom I got to know on first-name terms and almost like friends. She always had time for a quick chat.

Finally, I had a call from Amy, who works for the NHS Wellbeing Team. She told me, very kindly, that because my mental health has deteriorated, she can no longer work with me. I just can’t figure that one out.

I’ve seen images on Google that say something along the lines of the picture below. Sadly, it’s no consolation to me right now. Please, wish me luck for tomorrow and keep your fingers crossed that the decision goes in my favour. I will update my situation either tomorrow or within a few days depending on the outcome.

Thank you to all my amazing and beautiful friends and readers who have been there for me on every step of my recent painful journey. Love Ellie Xx 🖤

(Image source – main photo – Photo by Liza Summer: https://www.pexels.com)

Dissociative Healing

Image by Ulrike Leone from Pixabay

The past came back to haunt me yesterday
I thought I was over all that
It suddenly came flooding back
When opposite my counsellor, I sat

I cried a river of tears
As I remembered the sickening pain
I didn’t want to go back to that place
To experience everything again

The adult within me departed
Although I was sat in my seat
I could feel myself drifting away
As my heart skipped its regular beat

My thoughts were transported elsewhere
To a time so long ago
The world seemed unreal as time transposed
My agony completely on show

I had gone somewhere else in my mind
Somewhere distant and safe
I couldn’t be touched from where I was hidden
As I became the child, the waif

Gradually soft words broke through
It’s okay, you’re secure, you’re here
The voice, far away, waited patiently
Till the muffled speech became clear

Her voice brought me back to the room
My head cleared as she reached out her hand
The fear left and the pain abated
As I began to understand

My adult returned; it was time to go
Slowly, I walked to the door
I thanked her and smiled as the sun shone in
For I knew I was healing for sure.