It’s been a while since I have posted anything and I think you all deserve to know the reasoning.
Unfortunately, I have been back in the hospital. I went back on the first day of February and got a psychiatric assessment, the team decided on recommending the Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) for me. This program involves me going to the hospital every weekday from 9am to 4pm but allowing me to spend the nights and weekends in my house with my family. Which is much better for me compared to inpatient because I don’t like being away from my family and friends for long. This program is kinda what I expected them to recommend because I knew I was getting bad again, but I was not as bad as I was last spring. So I started the program one of the days following.
Of course my mental health decided to completely fail me in a horrible time. I was right in the middle of competition season and school was picking up in speed and in difficulty. I was able to contact all of my teachers before leaving and they were all so understanding and told me to focus on myself and worry about school later. So school wasn’t a big issue for me during my time in the program. However, when I got out, my mind was filled to the brim with school anxiety. But we will get to that later. As for Belles (my dance team), we were in the middle of competition season, so pulling out all together wasn’t going to be ideal, so we decided it would be best for me to continue with practices and competitions and just leave a little early from morning practices to get to the program on time. These practices on top of the program made my days extremely exhausting, but allowed me to see my wonderful friends every morning, which I am so grateful for! I don’t think I could have gone through all of this without them.
The program started off great for me. I fell into a routine there and liked my peers, my tech, my therapist, and even my psychiatrist. After the first few days I was awestricken by the hope I felt. But then, to start it all off, my tech went on vacation for a week, leaving us with a different substitute every day. Then, right after I felt comfortable with her, my therapist left. And to top it all off, I started to hate my psychiatrist. He seemed like a miracle worker sent from heaven when I first met him. He explained to me all the great things that I would feel as soon as I started on this new, magical medicine! Well this new magical medicine gave me horrible panic attacks in the morning and deep, dark depression episodes at night. After realizing the pattern, I spoke with him and voiced my concerns which he rolled off as a common side effect, so onto the next one. This one was also extraordinary! It would make me feel like a completely different person, only it takes about three weeks to kick in. Well, this is unfortunate because this program only lasts between 7 and 10 weekdays. So following being on this medication, I would be asked if I started feeling it kick in or started seeing signs of it in my system. Nope, nothing, I felt the exact same- sad, tired, and extremely frustrated.
Eventually, I was discharged from the PHP program feeling almost worse than when I arrived. I was put into the IOP (Intensive Outpatient Program), which I attended every Tuesday and Thursday night and Saturday morning. It was 3 hours long and involved about 1 and half hours of process group and 1 and half hours of an education activity. In addition to the program, we set up an appointment with my psychiatrist. We saw her at the point where my medicine should have completely kicked in. I told her I felt no different, if not worse. She decided to put me on a another medicine and I immediately saw a difference. We have figured out good balance of this new med and I am feeling more energetic and motivated, which is great! I have my last day of IOP this upcoming Tuesday. I found this program to be the most helpful for me.
So now, I am trying to get back into a routine. But I am happy I got the help I needed and am now doing much better!