In the spirit of trying new things today I finally had my first therapy session with a psychologist with the Mental Health Team at Goodmayes hospital.
I had a few sessions of counselling a few months ago which I had to pay for, so obviously that couldn’t continue as it was well outside my budget, but helpful at the time.
Today was a different situation though, it has been much needed and a long time in coming. I went in with an open mind and was happy to talk about what has been going on recently, in the past few years and the long forgotten past, but if I am going to get anything out of it may as well go the full monty and clear all the skeletons.
After a short while the lovely lady had come to the conclusion that group therapy is not for me as I am “too gregarious and would dominate the group” which I had to agree with. There is Garry in a group and Garry on his own, and regular readers and friends will know which one needs working on the most! She was struck at how different I was within minutes of being sitting alone in the waiting room to being in a room with someone to bounce off.
Automatic Negative Thoughts (ANTs) was the conclusion she drew from the time we spent together, hardly surprising considering how I view myself, but nice for me to have a label on it to allow me to focus on dealing with it.
What I find interesting is that I am more concerned about certain people, their welfare etc, than I am about myself. Is it because deep down I feel not worthy? Why am I more worried about helping them, fixing them, than dealing with my issues?
Something that will certainly be worked on, because the last few nights I have been having a series of revelations about myself, not anything that I have forced either. It feels like the worm is turning in terms of how I see myself and what I bring to the table. I actually feel a lot more positive.
The only downside is that I have to wait “a few months” for a space to come up – hopefully January but as we all know nothing is guaranteed when it comes to mental health treatment. More important between now and then is that I continue to question the thoughts and feelings that contribute to my depression and that is something that I will concentrate on.
If I can see myself the way others see me, then the world could actually be my oyster and I can move on from the worst year of my life.
Moving forwards and leaving the past behind, while learning lessons from it is my new goal.
I have no idea what clicked over the weekend, but something has and I like it!
And the best part of all?
I always assumed I had ANTs in my pants…turns out I have them in my head.. (groans)