Friday, January 2, 2015
Hello 2015! CBT and Mindfullness
Happy New Year!
Above picture credit to: freedesignfile.com
I can't say that 2015 rolled in with a bang... It quietly arrived without a lot of fanfare, bringing with it some old and some new.
I don't recall if I mentioned this before but for Christmas hubby and I decided our present to each other would be our wedding bands. He wanted to get me a new engagement ring and since we are legally common-law I thought: Why not go one step further and get the whole set? I'm sure one day we will say our vows but for right now I wanted a ring on his finger too!
We have managed to get over our disagreement. Actually I would have to say that hubby has managed to surprise me. After a day of us not talking and my son starting to question what was wrong, I started a conversation with my hubby about what happened. Since then my hubby has been doing some reading. One book had been recommended to us as a form of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) at home. Mind Over Mood: Change how you feel by changing the way you think. The other book is one we got awhile ago. Mindfulness for Dummies. He has been reading both of them! I have some catch up reading to do as over the past week I have been hearing a lot of: This is in the book... as he is doing things like cleaning the kitchen and talking to me alone about what is happening with my son instead of putting his foot in his mouth ;) or letting anger guide him.
'Mind Over Mood' I did start to read when we first got it and I was impressed with what I read. One of the first exercises gives you a situation and three different ways to look at it and right away you can see how our thoughts can determine how we feel or respond to something. The situation on the outside doesn't change but if you change how you 'think' then you change how you feel and therefor how you behave in response. I did spend some time discussing this chapter with my hubby and used myself as an example. I think that I have to a certain degree been using CBT for awhile now. I changed how I thought about my own parents. I could continue to blame them for everything that is wrong with me or my life or I could change how I thought about them. By changing this all my anger and resentment fell away. Instead I saw reasons to have compassion and empathy for them. My childhood didn't change... My thoughts did. As each scenario that has shaped you into who you are is looked at just a little differently... without the anger, the resentment, the judgement... Well it can be pretty powerful. I can say that I'm more then pleasantly surprised and impressed with the change that I am seeing in my husband. Reading 'Mindfulness for Dummies' is helping him to get a better understanding of the here and now and what he is currently feeling which will help better understand 'Mind Over Mood'.
He upped his Cipralex back to 20 mg. Yesterday he decided to go back on the Adderall. Even though we think that it caused the hives, the only way to tell for sure is to go back on and see if it happens again. Now that he his reading these books he feels confident in having better coping skills or ways of thinking and is going to drop back to 15 mg of Cipralex. He is doing all this on his own! Aside from the medication changes which I'm not sure how his doctor will react... I'm impressed! He is being pro-active and taking charge of his own feelings and working on changing them.
We have both discussed some of this in front of my son... You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink. My husband wants to change and is willing to take steps to make that change... My son is a different story.
While the above changes with my husband gives me a lot of hope for 2015 and is the new that I referred to before. The old... is my son...
Yesterday started what looks like may be the beginning of another relapse. If I can even call it a relapse since really he hasn't, in my opinion, gained the stability that I know is possible. The Olanzapine has been helping however the Invega seems to be leaving his system, again. He is due for his next shot in 3 days, on Monday. I wasn't thinking about this yesterday when my son first started talking about wanting to go off some of his medications. I'm not sure why his Lithium, after being on it for two years, has suddenly become a problem for him. Like I said I wasn't thinking... My initial reaction to him saying that he wanted to go off medications was to remind him that he had signed an agreement with me to be medication compliant as a condition to living here. That I can't force him to take medications, that is his choice however I don't think it's fair to ask me to watch him relapse and go back into psychosis or become depressed by choice from not taking this Lithium. He needs to talk to his treatment team if he wants to make medication changes as coming completely off the Lithium like that without slowly decreasing can cause him to plummet into a depression that doesn't need to happen.
It wasn't until I heard him on the phone with his Nana and while trying to discuss this with him, that signs of what I call psychosis talk became more apparent. He wasn't making sense. Talking about living for 20000 years on medications, that he was manic but didn't have mania and words like sacrament.... He said he will keep taking his Clozapine. He hasn't been on Clozapine since before his last break. He did agree to keep taking his Olanzapine, acknowledging that he needs the antipsychotic, when I reminded him that is what he is on now.
He ended up calling his Nana again and I purposely put the movie hubby and I were watching back on so that I couldn't hear. I know that he needs this outlet and well honestly I didn't want to hear his psychosis talk. Sorry Nana... I just didn't have it in me to listen last night. I didn't bring up or try to talk to him again about his medications instead got them ready like I always do, kissed him good night and went to watch TV in bed with hubby. It appears he took them, at least I hope he did. The dish was empty when I checked around 11. He didn't have an easy time going to sleep though and was awake at 3 when I checked on him. Not a good sign. Either he didn't take all of his medications or psychosis symptoms are getting worse so his medications are not enough to quiet his mind for sleep. I'm guessing it's the psychosis getting worse.
I called PACT today... I was thinking today why I'm having a tough time with my patience with them. Perhaps I want them to step in, take over and fix my son which I know logically is not going to happen. I guess I'm feeling tired. Tired of feeling like the responsibility of keeping my son stable is more on me then on them. So many times on the schizophrenia.com forum I tell family members about the 3 C's. I didn't cause it, I can't control it and I can't cure it. I think I need to take my own advise here. Maybe I need to stop trying to fight battles that are not mine to fight. I can help my son fight if it's what he wants and I will gladly do so. However if he doesn't want to be stable... There's the catch though. If he doesn't have the insight to know what he is fighting? I guess I have to fight for him. Maybe I need to learn a different word then fight... Maybe I need to do some CBT!
Back to PACT. His psychiatrist is still off for the holidays so there is no one around to make a medication change. His case worker is off today and his nurse should be around later. It's Friday... Not sure why this always seems to happen right before the weekend. Not that it makes much different as the results seem to be same either way. Supplement with the Olanzapine. My son did agree to take one this morning so that is good. I'm not sure what they plan to do about his Invega shot on Monday since my son has already stated that he will not take it again.
Today I can tell that he isn't ok. Although the Olanzapine I gave him just over an hour ago seems to be helping. *fingers crossed* we get through the weekend ok and can maybe get something that works better next week. I like the Invega but if he isn't going to be on medicinal dose or even a form of it that he will comply with...
On another note. I gave my notice to terminate our tenancy here on February 28! Wish me luck that we get the townhouse that I have put in an application for! I really, really want it!