Although I didn’t feel like it, I went to the dog show, which was in the NEC in Birmingham, a big center with lots of different halls, areas and car parks. It was lovely to see my friends, and most people were friendly and kind towards me. I say most people – because I ran into Simons girlfriend who made her feelings towards me very clear. She didn’t actually say anything, but gave me a filthy, filthy look as if she hated me like she had never hated anyone before.
Hogan didn’t do very well but I wasn’t too worried as I wasn’t expecting a good result. I did a little shopping, but the run in with Simons girlfriend set me back and I ended up returning to Hogan on his bench (where the dogs are kept when they aren’t being shown) and curling up with him, playing with my phone so that anyone passing would not think anything was wrong with me.
I phoned Tom and spoke to him, telling him I didn’t know whether I would be able to get to my car. I could feel the anxiety rising in my stomach and knew the valium I had was in the car, and not my bag. Tom told me to just keep breathing, and go for it, and sooner than I would realise, I would be at the car, and I would feel better.
I started walking towards to car, a lot of people gave me hugs to say goodbye, which was lovely. I still struggle sometimes to believe people care about me. As I was walking, I realised I was lost, and near the wrong car park. I thought I could find my way across but quickly realised I was even more lost. I started to feel dizzy and lightheaded, and yet again could feel the panic rising. What didn’t help was that my phone only had 5% battery left so I wasn’t entirely sure how much longer it was going to last for. I must have been walking for at least 30 minutes when I text Kim. She tried to help all she could, but it feels like no-one understands how it feels when I get into this situation.
I will try to explain how it feels. I can’t make logical thoughts, I can’t understand things and I can’t concentrate on anything. When I finally got back into the NEC after walking for nearly an hour around the outisde perimeter road, there was a big ‘YOU ARE HERE’ sign with a map of the whole NEC. No matter how long I stared at it I couldn’t make head nor tail of it – I couldn’t even work out where I was or how to get to where I needed to be. I thought I would go back to the hall where I came from but still had no idea which direction to go in.
Luckily, I came across a man with a flourescent vest on, who flagged a shuttle bus down for me which took me to the car parks – this would have be sorted except I still had no idea which car park I was parked in. Luckily, the very helpful bus driver was able to guess which I was in when he asked me the amount of time it took me to walk to the halls in the morning.
I finally found the car, and sat in the drivers seat with my head pressed against the steering wheel. I could not face the prospect of a 1.5 hour drive home. My arms and legs felt light and fuzzy.
I felt terribly sorry for myself and terribly stupid. This sort of thing doesn’t happen to people who are able to think clearly or have common sense. I hate being like this but at least when I am like this I am not a danger to myself, and so other people won’t be worrying about me, it is a personal internal pain that I have to bear on my own.
I got home safely. On the way home I tried to ring Kim but she wasn’t answering. I knew it was probably because she had too much going on to deal with me. I text her and said I understood, and that although my first thought was to punish myself, I was safe, and didn’t want her to worry.
I was supposed to be going to a night of ‘mulled wine and mince pies’ at my neighbours house tonight (I have just moved in and was invited) but didn’t… I feel like such a let down but I just don’t want to leave the house.
I hate feeling like this. I wish I could just be better and be done with it.