Just sayin’…

September 21st, 2020Just sayin’…

I SUPPOSE I should be writing about our new found freedom and that we can eat out again and enjoy each other's company.

It is great and long-awaited and what a completely crap six months it has been. I have made a few little bookings here and there, but as I have said before, I am not the canary, I am the coal miner. It’s going to take a while to lose the anxiety and it seems I am not the only one.
I called for a “telehealth” appointment the other week and said I was feeling a bit down, you know, and maybe it was time for a mental health top up. “Sure,” said the doctor, who is only doing telehealth calls which does not instil the greatest of confidence, “I can give you a referral”. And they did.
Now, a few years ago I found myself in a bit of a bad/sad patch, and went through the process of finding a pyschologist. It’s not as easy as you would think! You can check out the Yellow Pages, if you are my generation, or just Google “psychologists near me” and they appear. But who works best for who? It’s a lot like finding the right doctor. A bit like Goldilocks. Not too hard, not too soft, just right. As in not “you need to stop smoking immediately or you will die”, not “well, you know, smoking, my grandfather smoked until he turned 100 and he was fine” but just right “yeah, I know it’s going to be hard but we can work on this together for a great outcome”.
Finding a shrink is just as hard. (Interesting fact: Why are psychiatrists and psychologists called shrinks? It’s a jocular reference to the ritual practice in certain tribal societies of literally shrinking the heads of one’s vanquished enemies. The term shrink was adopted as a joking reference to psychotherapists in the 1960s.)
I tried a few before I found the right one. One asked me to lie back on a bed (ewww, who had been on that pillow before me) and then played really strange music into headphones. Apparently it was meant to bring you to a new awareness. It just annoyed the crap out of me. Another one chatted for ages and then asked if I was drinking too much and when I said probably, suggested adding ice to the glass of wine. No wonder they have a degree in this and I don’t. Not.
Anyway, I finally found someone who was just right. Interested, informed, non-judgemental – and really helpful. So I had my referral sent to them. Just got a call back yesterday. I listened to the voice recorder and they said it was great to hear from me but they had no spots available for at least a month and I could try again then.
Maybe I will, maybe I won’t. I just hope those really in need are getting the help they need. It’s a strange time for us all, yes getting easier, but there are plenty of people still struggling and that will not end with the end of lockdown. So if you do need help, please seek it, and don’t give up. Just sayin’…
If you need help now, call LifeLine on 13 11 14, MensLine on 1300 789 978,
Beyond Blue – Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service on 1800 512 348,
Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800 or SuicideLine on 1300 651 251.

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