I will be the first to admit that I ride an emotional roller coaster. It takes very little stress to drop me and very few happy thoughts to bounce me back up. This is probably true to a certain extent for most people, but it's really like the difference between emotional hills and mountains.
Lately I've been writing about my "search for socialization." I've been getting command hallucinations telling me to kill myself for close to two months now, and the verdict from my therapist is that I need to get out of my own head and socialize more. I hadn't realized just how hard this is for me to do with new people until I put in an application to volunteer at a local animal shelter. I didn't hear back from them yesterday like I was supposed to, so I completely freaked out and gave up on the idea completely. I decided instead that I just needed some plain old group therapy.
So, today, I check my email and I'm being invited to interview at the shelter after all. Yep, yesterday I said that I couldn't handle it no matter what happened, but instantly I started thinking about being able to help the animals and I was enthusiastic - a little bit hesitantly - but enthusiastic again. I wrote back and set up an interview for St. Patrick's Day Monday for good luck.
Just for balance though, and in case it really doesn't work out at the shelter, I did go ahead and get my therapist to give me a referral to one of the support groups at the clinic. I chose the LGBT group, because it's really just where I belong and I have a much easier time making connections within the queer community. I'm expecting to hear from the group coordinator at some point soon to get some more details.
And tonight? I feel fine. I've gone from the pit of despair to a kind of even keel. I'm definitely not exuberant, but I am excited to now have two possibilities opening. However, as my therapist pointed out today, I'm now more aware of how stressed I get when I move outside of my comfort zone and new people and situations definitely qualify. We're not sure if the stress is going to exacerbate the psychosis, but since a healthy level of stress - of challenge - is a good thing and it may reduce my psychosis, I'm going to check these situations out.
Most of what goes on in psychiatry and psychology is experimental. It's hit and miss. No one knows enough how the brain works, let alone how an individual brain works, to be sure how to handle certain aspects of mood swings and psychosis. This is another trial run. We'll see what unfolds.