Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Love the skin you're in - busy days - fear of despair and the crash

I haven't written for a while - and I'm hugely grateful to those readers who took the trouble to ask, "What's up Cardiff Drunk - normally you're a noisy bastard so why now you are so quiet?"

Things are a little tough in the world of Cardiff Drunk at the moment.

It started simply with doing more. I started on the day therapy programme (DTP) through the Community Addictions Unit (CAU) (we live in a world of acronyms and initials in recovery-land (RL)).

The programme was fine - and its contents confidential - but I managed to get there every day, I managed to speak a little in a group environment, which I find tough. But the chief fly in my ointment is the condition for which I've been prescribed many an ointment.

I don't know what this is any more but I know I want it to go away because it's destroying any improvements in my mood achieved through lower levels of drinking and having a routine of work and therapy. I stopped taking the Trazodone to try and see if that might be the trigger for the rashes and dryness and itchiness and pain. My hands improved slightly and I thought it was getting better, but I've gone back to it over the last two days just to get some undisturbed sleep.

Things got really bad. The eczema on my face - if eczema it is - became infected, redness became scab and self-consciousness spiralled into fear and self-loathing. I went to the doctor as an emergency and the infection has now pretty much cleared up. But the underlying malaise remains and remains a threat to my equanimity.

I'm back at the doctors' tomorrow morning when I'm going to make a fairly desperate plea for a solution. The dryness gets worse by the day and it seems to be spreading, today my thighs flared up with what looked like veins coming through the skin, the skin on my hands is thick and the blood seems to vanish from their surfaces. I can see some of this as an allergic reaction to washing powder - though I didn't change it around the time when the problem started - so today I've got a new brand: I'm terrified of the consequences this change might have. And, why is it on my face and on my hands if this is the case?

Perhaps I'm over-treating the problem and I'm taking a bath a day which is probably just drying things out even more - I'll have to try and get back to showering. I'm washing with aqueous cream and I'm worried this is clogging up my pores and making the redness worse, but I'm terrified of using shower gel or soap.

I'm close to despair to be honest. I've missed two days of work and when I've been there I've been so distracted that I'm not taking much in and I'm terrified I won't be able to cope when I go live on the call centre - it all feels too much. (Do you get the point that I'm terrified yet?) I'm going in today but dreading what I've missed and that I'll have to catch up, possibly at the expense of not completing the two week TDP.

The drinking has gone up too. Nearly disastrously this week with no work or TDP to fill my time. I've found myself drinking for five days solid to yesterday, and drinking too much - I'm determined now to have today, tomorrow and hopefully a couple of more days off it but I know now it'll be a physical struggle and suicide has come into my thoughts again.

Sorry to be so down - things probably aren't as bad as I imagine, I'm not in the disaster zone yet and I'm doing better at helping myself than I have done in the past.

I hope you're OK.

If you spent it, thank you for your time.



Mary LA said...

Good to see you back. Hope this is a better week for you.

Xx Mary

Anybeth said...

ouch, and ouch. I hope the doctor can find some relief for you. constant discomfort and pain is, well, a pain, and mentally challenging.
glad to see you back on the blog.