Monday, July 13, 2015

School and Mental Illness

Let's just say it's not a happy combination.

Today, while I was having a panic attack, for reasons still unknown to me, the teacher had me come up in front of the class with my "lesbian partner" (we have family groups in my family counseling class) and have a therapy session with him. I didn't have a clue what was going on. I hadn't been paying attention in class due to the crying and panic. And, actually, I've never paid much attention in class anyways. We had our session. I let her (my lesbian partner) answer most of the questions. I just sort of nodded along. I'm not on currently any fast acting anxiety medications. Instead I'm on a long lasting anti-anxiety medication twice a day. For a list of what I'm currently taking check out this post. However that doesn't help when I feel like I'm about to throw up, and I'm having a panic attack.

The worst thing was that the professor knew what was going on. He could see it. He's a counselor himself. He could see me mostly successfully holding back tears, but not completely. He could see the panic in my eyes when I looked at him. The tapping of my foot. But he asked me to do it anyways. I understand that it was in the lesson plan, but still.

Another class I'm taking is Organic Chemistry Two. How's that going? Not well. I got a 30% on my first exam. I've decided to drop the class and take a W (withdraw). But I haven't done it yet, I'm kind of scared to. Also, I feel like a failure doing it. Because I know I can do it. I know I can. I do. If I put in the time. And I just can't seem to do that. Therefore, I can't do the class. I spend too much of my time sleeping and recovering and doing nothing.

My third class is going really well. My professor today told me I made the highest grade in the class on our first exam (a 93%). When I first saw the grade I was disappointed. I thought I could do better. But after finding out it was the highest grade in the class I felt much better. Also, he said there is a very good chance I can do research with him in the fall. Which is exciting because he's a neuroscientist. And working in a neuroscience lab and getting a letter of recommendation from a neuroscience professor is good when applying to PhD programs for neuroscience. As long as I don't have to sacrifice anything. I absolutely refuse to do that. Point blank refuse.

My last two summer classes were Cellular and Molecular Biology and Young Adult Literature which went alright. I got an A in YA Lit and a C in Cellular and Molecular Biology. Which I'm content with. Although I really wanted a B in Cellular and Molecular Biology. As part of YA Lit I wrote two chapters set in the psychiatric emergency room and the children's psychiatric ward, if any of you want to read it. Just send me an email ats or comment below. At this time I do not plan on writing any more of it.

Also, while on the topic of mental illness and school, as many of you know Spring of 2014, I took a medical withdraw. I don't know if I mentioned it in post about it or not. I don't remember. But that was also due to mental illness. So yay mental illness and school. I was unable to attend classes. And couldn't be in Columbia. I needed to be in Charleston. Although, it is interesting that I made it through school last semester (with my best GPA to date!) while missing four non-consecutive weeks of classes due to being in the mental hospital three times plus partial hospitalization.

Are any of you taking summer classes? If so how are they going? How has mental illness affected your school/work/etc. experience?
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