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The moment I knew

My session yesterday was beautiful, as beautiful as it could be given what is unfolding. Started to freak out at the end but managed to hold it together. Then at 11pm I found out through a friend that all those with asthma are being advised to self-isolate for 12 weeks  at least – Nina and K both have asthma. Cue meltdown. Then another friend said something hugely unhelpful about societal collapse and I had panic attacks all night and didn’t sleep at all. It feels like the end of the world as we know it. How can things return to ‘normal’? I don’t want this post to be about the f*cking chaos that is unfolding globally though, because I don’t want to add to that drama and fear.

Luckily I went sick at work yesterday, and will be off for at least two weeks. I decided to do it as I was a total state and knew I needed some space to get myself together and have some time at home and in nature by myself before the end of term, so I was as prepared as possible for a lot of time at home entertaining Nina. I didn’t realise she’d be off today too and for the foreseeable future.

I text K at 8.30 asking if this latest guidance changes our work, telling her Nina and I are now self-isolating, asking to speak. We are speaking at 2. I am holding out for that and having some support because I’ve not slept and Nina is devastated also and holding her feelings about this when I want to die is pretty tough, but at the same time dreading what she will say – not being with her for 3 months or more is unthinkable. It says people with the most serious health conditions will be asked to socially isolate within days – K said yesterday we could go for a session on Thursday this week as well. I am hoping that can still happen, so we can be together knowing it is the last time for a while. This may not be possible though, or it may be that she has thought this through already – her asthma is controlled and she seemed to be ahead of the curve in seeing what was ahead for us as a country, so surely she’d have said no face-to-face already if this was going to be the case. Of course I want her to be safe though. Phone will work for a while because we have such a strong attachment now, it’s just that this whole thing triggers bigger attachment fears about not being able to get to her. I want to trust that this will pass, but it is hard to believe that when looking at the global economic mess that is upon us and worsening. ‘Business as usual’ has been disrupted. I am trying not to catastophise as it is definitely unhelpful!

I am desperate for some support. I am feeling suicidal. The problem is reaching out to people who don’t understand attachment trauma makes me feel worse. People are saying about communities coming together and new world’s being built after this and I want to scream because I don’t want anything else, I only want K. I don’t want a new world if it doesn’t involve seeing her. I recognise the value in all these things, in self-care and nature and (virtual) community and presence, but right now all I want is her. I considered calling The Samaritans but they have triggered me in the past trying to rationalise with my attachment disorder. Lots of my friends are, understandably, having a really tough time or just cannot understand my concerns.

I also wasn’t prepared for suddenly not being able to get things – someone in my village is getting a prescription for me and dropping it outside with, hopefully, some loo rolls! But I need someone to post things for me, collect my sick note, pick up schoolwork for Nina. We can still go out to wild places and for bike rides, and will do when I am more together, but all I want is someone just to come and sit with me and that is not possible. If anyone has any ideas for where I can get more support please let me know, like any organisations or online groups where people who know about attachment trauma but aren’t in crisis themselves are able to provide support to those who are in attachment panic. K says she is here for me to talk to about all of this but she can’t be there 24/7 which seems to be what I need right now. I’m also scared she’ll buckle under the pressure of all this – she must have so many clients freaking out and her own concerns too. I don’t want my needs to get too big for her and make her go away.

What a shit time to be in need of crisis support when our NHS is buckling.

Love and strength to all during this uncertainty xx


6 thoughts on “The moment I knew”

  1. It must be a shock how bad things got so quickly. It’s interesting to me how physically not being able to get to her triggers you. I don’t feel exactly this way, but it’s resonantly similar. I like maps a lot and some of this is aesthetic, but I also feel afraid at some level I may not be able to find myself. Long ago, after leaving a good friend, I used to wake up sleep-walking in my apartment looking for her. It’s a very physical feeling of loss, as though the person exists, but I can’t find them. Perhaps it’s a disruption in an actual stage of development of object constancy, but I suspect it’s metaphorical from a mind too young to express itself: in times of stress, I couldn’t understand my parents’ perspective. Their minds seemed to be lost to me, but the urgency of understanding became greater, because they were hurting me to extract care.

    I am watching the situation in developed countries with interest and fear…our neighbour with no ability to stop the epidemic seems to have lost control and may be where Italy is in a few weeks. But I can’t completly tell. We have had only one case here, but he was a tourist who spent 10 days across a very porous border before getting sick 3 days after crossing it. Our school is forcing kids to drink water when a whistle blows as though random controlling acts can keep you safe, which leaves me with zero confidence in our preparedness. The degree of uncertainty for all of us is very difficult to cope with. Take care. I have no words of wisdom, because I have no idea what to do when I get overwhelmed, but I do send my good wishes.


  2. I’m with you on the attachment thing CB. I can’t bear the idea of not seeing Guy for 3 or 4 months, or however long this lasts. He’s offered to Skype and says it’s surprisingly good, but he obviously doesn’t have the same attachment issues I do right now! Though I fully understands his need to do whatever he sees fit and wouldn’t want to talk him out of looking after himself in whatever way he sees fit to. I just wish with all my heart none of this was happening. I’m not afraid of COVID19 though some might argue I should be because I’ve got two reasons on their list of illnesses to be, it’s just that I’ve survived wiping out my immune system twice and been at risk for years now while it builds back up slowly, and I just feel it’s business as usual.
    Even though I’m not afraid, it was eery to drive through town and see all the bars and restaurants shut. I can’t imagine this going on for months on end, it’s too weird.


  3. I totally understand how hard and scary this feels in terms of your sessions and attachment to K. I feel like I’m basically treading water at the moment.
    I’m actively trying to avoid the local news as much as possible as one of the psychologists who works in the same building as my T posted that she will be only doing sessions via phone/skype etc. I had a mild freak-out when I read that one. I don’t think T would post on the media though..but I also don’t know how much control he has over the building he works in. I understand the fear that you are feeling 1000%.
    big hugs…xx


  4. I hope speaking helped….
    I feel like more support online will be opening, there is more in the US for some reason than here.
    Sending virtual hugs…..


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