Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Power completely restored!

So. That thing that happened. I've already posted about the blackout. This past weekend, the university put my building on partial generator power so that emergency systems, heat, and some lights came back online. I believe many of my residents and the Light house residents upstairs chose to come back at that point. I didn't. I didn't want to sleep where I didn't have power enough to see anything after ~5:30pm. I also went to Massachusetts, as mentioned in my last blog post, and my anxiety levels dropped some. My friends are awesome, and they have two adorable kitties, and they also gave me use of the spare bedroom/craft room, which meant I wasn't sleeping in the same room as someone else. I unfortunately couldn't let the cats in without supervision due to issues with one of them possibly spraying, and the possibility of either of them digging claws into the air mattress. Still, I spent a lot of time hugging cats and convincing them to purr.

Monday, my boss emailed all residents of my house to tell us that CL&P power was restored to all campus buildings, including ours. He didn't, however, check to make sure we were back to full power. We weren't. The extension part of the building had no electricity, although it did have heat. The main building had everything, I think. Facilities and Physical Plant were in the house on Monday and Tuesday doing something with breakers, and replacing (?) the boiler. By Tuesday afternoon, we had power back, and my temporary roommate and I moved back into the house as fast as possible.

I took a mental health day on Tuesday because I was still stressed about not having my own room back. This morning, I woke up in my room and alone. There was more relief associated with both of those things than I would have believed had I not just spent 10 or 11 days not having one or both. I feel so much happier today, just because of those simple things.

Yesterday I *also* went to see my therapist, when I asked for an urgent care session (I made the appointment before I moved back to my room, although the appointment was after). I talked through just how upset I've been for the past week, and he assured me both that it's completely normal that all the changes in my routine would cause this level of upset, and that my self-advocacy was excellent and really wasn't asking for favors so much as leveling the playing field since most of my peers had power back well before I did. That was the basic thing we talked about anyway. I'm not going to go into more detail on that.

Two other things came up during the session: the doctor who prescribed amitriptylene had called my therapist to discuss how I'm doing on the 10mg dose and whether I would like to raise it. After a short discussion, I decided that yes, I would like that, so last night I took 20 mg. Today? I walked to all my classes, even the one that went after my voice lesson, which normally makes it difficult to go anywhere. I was in mild pain by the end of the day, but it wasn't impeding my ability to do things, which was awesome. I just hope that I don't keep having to up the dosage of the medicine, but even so, it was such an amazing relief not to have to deal with the extra pain.

I said two things. The other was that the class dean had called him to ask about the email I had cc'd her on informing my professors that I would be taking a mental health day and not coming to class. She was on my side, apparently, but unsure why I needed the mental health day. Dr. A told her, without going into specifics, that just not having my room available was an incredible strain, etc. Apparently, a lot of students have been stressed out in different ways by the power outage.

Now that I'm back in my room, I've noticed a number of stress responses have gone away or lessened: my face is no longer extremely oily and extra-pimply; all-around pain has lessened (although a large part of that *is* the medicine); and I'm much happier.

I think, at this point, I may just be able to handle the rest of the semester. So long as nothing else happens. *knock on wood* All the same, I think it would be good idea to start meditating again. It did wonders Monday night when I was upset, and lately it takes a lot to calm me down.

So yeah, in general: huge improvement today as far as physical and mental health go, and I hope to continue with that.

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