Interesting week so far. Bittersweet, but interesting.
I had an appointment with the psychologist (who I will call G from now on) on Tuesday. It was basically psychoeducation. We discussed 20 types of cognitive distortions (see here) and she told me to start working on trying to identify them in my everyday thinking. The one I can identify without even having to think about it, is polarized thinking, or “black and white thinking”. Gee, I wonder why that would be?….
At the end of the appointment she asked me whether I truly identify with BPD. I guess she’s kind of doubting my diagnosis. I told her yes. And she said “But do you have problems with interpersonal relationships? I mean, you’ve only had your Ex.” At that moment I thought she was right, but really my young life has been rife with failed friendships and intense crushes. We just haven’t had the chance to “just talk” and she has yet to talk with M about me.
On Tuesday I also saw M, and the appointment was awesome. I told her all about my weekend, the argument with my mom and then getting angry at my sister, and I read her my diary entries from those days. Honestly, they were chock full of cognitive distortions, but there were a few important highlights. She was impressed by my trying to dissuade the anger by making a list of things I like about myself (Impressive, I know!). She was also surprised when I read her the following sentence after reading her the list:
“But how can all those good things coexist with the monster that I am?”
I guess she saw it as a sign that at least I am open to seeing the “gray” areas in myself, that I am not just “good” or “bad”, but rather a mix of things. Rationally, I know this, but what I have to work on in therapy is moving that thought from my brain to my heart.
So, finally, Tuesday ended up being an incredibly good day. Yesterday was meh, and then today came along…
After a series of calls with administrative folk, a scare that I would get an F in pediatrics for not dropping out on time, and having to fill out a bunch of papers at my school, I was able to drop out of the pediatrics rotation. I had to do it now, rather than waiting for the approval of my leave of absence, which will be evaluated next week.
At one point during the endless back-and-forth between offices, I ran into my medical school’s psychologist (see this post). She asked me if she could have a word with me, and we went to her office. Turns out the pediatrics rotation coordinator spoke to her about me and my “situation”. So I explained what happened and how I’ve been feeling, how things took a turn since the last time that I saw her in February.
But all that just left me feeling frustrated. It brought back the negative thoughts about feeling like a failure, etc. And now I can’t help but feel so empty and numb. I hate feeling empty and numb.
I feel like I’ve been stripped away of the things that held me together. Medical school is on hold, I don’t feel inspired when painting, I’m not dancing, and my non-existent self-esteem has reached rock bottom. I feel naked, and what’s left of me is my essence; which I know is there, but depression has put a haze over it and I can’t see it or feel it very well. So it leaves me feeling like I don’t have an identity.
It’s a very strange point in my life. I’ve never felt like this. I guess it’s mainly because I’ve never really just stopped. I went straight from high school to college to medical school. The only breaks I’ve had are Christmas and summer. There’s always been some responsibility keeping me busy.
Now there’s nothing to use as a mask or distraction, and I’m left finally trying to answer that dreaded question I’ve been avoiding….
Who am I?
P.S: I’m such a geek. I saw this in my room and instantly thought of a horseshoe kidney…