Thursday, 3 July 2008


Everybody needs a bunch of flowers now and again, and these are for you.
Now I know I don't have to feel guilty, but I do, so you'll have to put up with it.
I feel guilty cause I'm not getting to go to any of the people I care abouts blogs.

I like to read and comment, I think it's important. Otherwise what right have I to be read. But right now it's just not possible and I need to tell you why.

At the moment, my sleep is really bad, it's never that good anyway. Last night being typical, awake between 1 and 2am. Back to sleep till 4 then awake again. Finally giving in at 6.30.

I know my anxiety levels are high at the moment. On a personal level, I am scared about sailing on Saturday, but I think I know why now. Part of learning to helm is co-ordination, and one thing I'm not good at, is that. In the same way as I have no eye / ball co-ordination. The idea of learning how to hold the tiller and the mainsail rope and know what to do with them when tacking, in that you have to sort things out behind your back is so not happening for me.

I know I went off at the deep end yesterday when I hooked so thoroughly into a cancer scare. Which I also know will be part of my life for ever. And, that when it happens it's for a short while utterly unbearable, till I get it sorted it whatever way.

But mainly what is getting to me at the moment is my therapy work load. Which in itself is not very many hours. Twelve contact hours a week is about average currently. What the problem is, is the depth of people's pain that I am holding right now. Now like every professional therapist I have supervision. I have an hour and a half every month. Normally this is plenty to keep me on top of my game.

Unfortunately now that isn't enough, and my support network is away, so I'm stuck with trying to hold it all together.

Monday I saw the woman whose son hung himself two years ago, who's now terrified of driving and having panic attacks.
The woman who is the same age as the first woman's son who simply wants to die. So she takes daily overdoses and has been starving herself for the last few months.
The man who has been so badly bullied at work that he is contemplating ending his life as it has all been for nothing.
The man who is depressed cause of not being able to deal with his family relating to his past military experiences.
The woman who is trying to come to terms with her marital break up.

Today; the women trying to cope with sexual deviancy in an ex partner. The woman who hates herself so much that no-one else could possibly think she is worth knowing. The woman who's struggling with motherhood for the first time and a partner who is not supporting her and just yells at her cause she's changed. The success of this week.... The man who feels that he has finished therapy cause he's learnt healthier ways to deal with his past and is no longer haunted by it... YES!. Ending with the teenager who's 5'7" and 98lbs /45 k, who is anorexic.( all of these are variations on reality to protect confidentiality)

And for each of these people I have to be energised and caring. I have to give them my complete attention. To find ways to communicate with them to help them make sense of what they are going through. I've got 5 new referrals this week. I'm giving up my lunch breaks in the next couple of weeks cause people's pain is so bad and I'm going on holiday in the middle of the month. And I can't just say tough luck come back in August.

Everyone needs hope, and I'm so bloody good at helping people feel it. As I got told today and probably most days. "I was frightened before I came to see you, but now I feel better and I feel that I can find a way out of this"

I'm only telling you this just so you bear witness. I don't want any solutions. I know the solutions and one of them will happen in my going away and having some me time for a couple of weeks. It is one of the reasons I'm now so addicted to walking it mends my soul.

Just as eating a really healthy salad after a glass oz fizz works to, as I have done tonight

As does writing this.

I love my work with a passion. I cannot imagine ever doing anything else. I have loved helping people through talking since I was 16, when I persuaded a girl that life was worth living after she'd taken an overdose and being admitted to the ward where I was a cadet nurse.

I get an enormous amount from my work... to know that there are people alive because of me is a privilege. To know that people have found contentment in their lives when they only had pain is the greatest reward I could ever have.

It's just a bit tough right now. So thank you for reading. And for caring as I've no doubt you will.

It's a very odd thing blogging, more times than not I feel more loved and cherished in this world than I do in reality, with the exception of my wonderful friends and my boys. And it is for this reason I've told you all of this tonight. It's safe to tell you and that counts for a lot in my world.


Mei Del said...

i'm proud to know you - and i read and comment or not comment sometimes or just email ... but i don't expect to get read and commented at the same time. take care bb

Sorrow said...


Trixie said...

It must really break your heart hearing these people and the pain they are going through, but it's such a brilliant feeling when you help them. You truly are an inspiration BB.

Exmoorjane said...

Don't beat yourself up about not commenting on blogs - we all have those times when it just isn't possible.
Hmm, I know you haven't asked for solutions but one thing that strikes me is maybe a need for some kind of protection ritual before work and some kind of cleansing afterwards.....QV would be able to guide you. Nothing major - just a way of spiritually letting go of everyone else's stuff after a session. I'd be tempted to space clear your consulting room too on a regular basis.
Big hugs.....jxxxxxxxx

WesterWitch/Headmistress said...

Stern talking too - no-one expects you to read and comment on blogs if you don't have the time . . . it shouldn't be a tit for tat - I'll read your blog if you read mine . . . I read your blogs because they are interesting . . . I don't expect you to reciprocate unless you like my blog and of course if you have the time. Same goes for Purplecoo.

Agree with Jane - it has all clearly built up in you. You are good at what you do, but if you can't walk away and give yourself space you are in danger of letting it overwhelm you. You know that other people's pain and actions and lives are not your responsibilty . . . you are there to help them help themselves . . . but you need a bit of ME time and a holiday will help you distance and get things back into perspective. Does your supervisor know how you are feeling.

Ronjazz said...

You said the magic word, Byrd... passion. You dive in. You swim in it. And you are respected and admired for showing the way. Do you know how much an example you are to those who have not yet found that courage? This is why I feel that I do the same thing... the passion of the trembling, especially when you know your own voice.

Sally's Chateau said...

Stress and anxiety coupled with sleep deprevation drags you down quicker than anything. It's terribly theraputic to write isn't it ? funnily enough I've just followed one of exmoorjane's suggestions in a book she sent me, and golly it worked !!

Walker said...

Only caring person could feel someone's pain as you do.
I hope you find the time to purge some of the weight bearing down on your soul and find a breath of fresh air.
Saturday may be just that while at the helm breathing in the sea air.
Have a nice weekend

darth sardonic said...

i am not getting out to my pals' blogs as i should lately either, due to work and being tired all the time, but i think you will do just brilliantly at sailing!

trousers said...

No problem - real life is the priority at such times - but blogging does often feel like such a warm, safe haven doesn't it? Almost, in a way, like having friendships without consequences.

When your break comes, you surely deserve it x

Bollinger Byrd said...

I don't know what to say....
I feel held and stroked and cherished and told off in a good way.

I have looked after myself well today, in that I've been up to Liverpool to have lunch with my lovely friend wakeup. Then on to collect big son to bring home for the weekend.
And then I even got both sons home for a meal... the wonders of the bribery of home cooked food!

Thank you for being my friends.
bbx xxxxxxxxx

Mel said...


Well, not much left TO say when this lot has said it all so very well.

I'll just smile and know you've heard the message, then, shall I?

<--smiling and nodding!

Cait O'Connor said...

This is your (right) life's path, that is why you love it so and you are using the gift of healing that you were given You have chosen a hard journey that's all and being sensitive to others brings such pain upon yourself. Yuo need lots of breaks, lots of walking.lots of whatever changes your energies. Don't make yourself ill.
Write/blog away as much as you want to, I understand how it is doing you good. There are loads of us here who will read your words and benefit from them and be here for YOU too.
I don't get enough time to comment on blogs sometimes either and I feel guilty, it's silly really so don't worry about that!

nitebyrd said...

Just knowing that someone cares and is interested in your life is an enormous help. I know.

Although we may never meet, I care and am interested in you. You are a real, intelligent, fragile, strong, silly, serious, amazing woman. Know that you're cared for and loved and that YOU have touched my life, as well.