Monday, 4 February 2013

Attention Seeking

I've always been the type of person who needs to be asked how I am rather than simply tell people how I am and about my life (whether I tell them the truth or what I want them to hear is another matter!).
I've noticed other people, not just those with severe/brittle asthma, don't hesitate to broadcast to the world things like how poorly they are, when they're in hospital, major and minor details of their life.

I've been feeling rather ill for a little while now. I've been struggling with work, well, living in general. I've felt so ill, I've kept pushing myself and puffing away on my nebuliser and knocking back the steroids. I knew I was running myself down - constant headaches and exhaustion, feeling irritable, and generally feeling crap. I'd seen my GP and got myself signed off work for a week in the hope I could get a grip on my spiralling out of control asthma.
Last Wednesday I suddenly felt a lot more unwell. I was maintaining my oxygen saturations above 90%, I don't worry unless they drop into low 80%'s, but I felt so awful that I went with my gut instinct and phoned an ambulance. I can remember bits of what happened whilst with the paramedics. The next thing I was aware of was being ventilated. I was aware that I wasn't able to breathe for myself, I couldn't move a muscle but I could hear everything going on around me. To be honest, it was pretty terrifying, not in a "I'm going to die way" as I knew I was safe, but more in a "I'm aware of everything but I'm effectively paralysed, and I'm scared" way. Apparently I appeared to be wide awake at times whilst intubated, eyes open and trying to mouth words. They had to keep increasing the sedation - things like that scare me - I'd rather be out of it and then come round when its all better!!!! It hasn't been that bad the previous times I've been sedated and ventilated.
Anyway, I'm much better than that now. Still in hospital but not in intensive care, hopefully escaping later on this week.

My 'issue' is, that I feel so unsupported. For example, if I posted what had happened on facebook then I'd have loads of messages, and as generic as some (most?) of the responses would be, it would be nice to know that people were aware of what I've been through and have thought of me.
There are very few friends that I feel I could contact to let them know I was poorly. I don't feel able to contact majority of friends and let them know what has happened as I feel that I'm attention seeking! A friend text me today to ask if I was free to meet up, I replied saying I was in hospital and very briefly what had happened. She demanded to know why I hadn't told her sooner. I do think of telling people but I don't know what to say "hi, I'm in hospital and have been poorly enough to be in intensive care. how are you?"!?

I don't feel that I am an attention seeker but doesn't everything I've written say that I'm seeking attention?
I don't know. I'm torn between feeling that I'd like the support of people but I don't want to be an attention seeker, but at the same time, how can people support me if they don't even know what has happened?

And now I've written that last piece, I can see how it relates to so much of my life.


  1. I don't understand why everything you've said makes you question if you're an attention seeker?

    This post makes me so sad.

    Please take yourself and attention seeking OUT of the same sentence. You are the LEAST attention-seeking person i have ever come across, even when genuinely LIFE THREATENINGLY ill, hardly anybody is even aware of it.

    You go too far the other way Dawn, you're so scared of being seen as an attention seeker that you suffer SO MUCH on your own, when people are there and would love to support and be there for you in whatever little or larger way they can.

  2. Also, i just want to add something...

    How would you feel if that situation with your friend was the other way around? If you texted a friend asking if they fancied meeting up and then you found out that they were in hospital, as ill as you are, and you only told them because they'd texted about something completely unrelated?

    I'll be 100% honest and say that i do wonder if you'd have told me about what's going on if i hadn't texted you. If i'd have just read this and not known i'd be quite hurt - i'd feel like i'd 'failed' you as a friend and actually that you didn't really count MY friendship enough to turn to me when you could just do with a chat or to talk about whats happened or WHATEVER.

    You think you don't want to say anything because it might be seen as attention seeking - but to people who truly care about you they'd never even THINK that. They'd actually be happy that you confided in them, or turned to them for whatever form of support. Doing it the way you're doing isn't just making you feel lonely and isolated, it makes people around you feel unwanted/unhelpful and pretty useless too.