The last two Septembers I have ended up needing intense treatment for my mental health. September 2016 I was inpatient for a week, and September 2017 I spent a month in a day program (also known as partial hospitalization). So, here September comes, and I’m hoping I can avoid making it a three year streak.
Since September is approaching, I mentioned this trend to my psychiatrist. After flipping through my absurdly thick file, he concluded that “life events” had happened before each September. What life events? Well, last summer my husband and I bought our first house and while that is a happy event, it is also considered one of the bigger, more life disrupting events in a person’s lifetime.
What about the September before that? I don’t remember any events happening then. But regardless of what events may or may not have occured in 2016, this year there are both good and bad stressful events. New, more time consuming tasks at work, and a need to replace our roof (on a house we have had a year). Surely these events could prove to undo me if purchasing a house did.
So here I am, worrying that September will be bad again, and hoping that by worrying I’m not going to create a self-fulfilling prophecy. I am taking some precautions to ensure that I can continue functioning in what could be a tough month.
- I have signed up for another mental health counseling group. This one is offered by someone who recently joined my therapists practice. At first I was hesitant since she wouldn’t be running it, but now I think it will be good to have a different perspective and style.
- I am working on maintaining the healthy changes I mentioned a few posts ago (update to come).
- I am telling my psychiatrist, therapist, new counseling group, and husband about my concerns.
- I am going to plan something fun or relaxing for each weekend, such as allowing myself a day of sitting either outside or in my favorite spot in the house and reading, or getting a manicure, getting a favorite meal, or going to a comedy show.
- I will take a few days off work here or there to recharge.
Fingers crossed that I make it through September without having to put everyday life on hold.