It is exactly one year to the day since I first started writing Confessions of a Serial Insomniac. Happy birthday, blog!
My first piece of writing here was the ‘About‘ page, which still retains the same basic structure as it did on 4 May 2009, but has been modified in terms of content as circumstances have changed. My first actual post was written on 5 May, and can be found here (it’s also since become the subject of another page, as I thought it gave a lot of useful contextual information).
Confessions began life at serialinsomniac.wordpress.com. I moved to the self-hosted domain of www.serialinsomniac.com in January this year, as I wanted more control over the aesthetics of the blog. I still have a redirect from the old WP hosted blog, which will run until January 2011.
SIGNIFICANT EVENTS AND POSTS
A lot has happened in these 12 months.
I started self-harming again in May (though I’ve been ‘clean’ since January this year) and was subsequently diagnosed with BPD and bipolar disorder in June (at which point my medication was changed from Citalopram to Venlafaxine). I started hearing a (benign) voice in September, whilst in October the hallucinations became malicious, in the form of ‘They’. It was also in October that I lost my job, owing to my lengthy mental illness-related absence. I completely lost my sanity over Christmas, leaving me in not quite the best frame of mind in which to see the new year. The problems were mainly related to being forced into seeing Paedo, but C’s revelations that he would be offering a curtailed number of sessions in 2010 didn’t help either.
In January, I bit the bullet and did something that I’d been intent on doing for about two years – I changed my (sur)name, thus dissociating myself entirely from my aunt and uncle, Georgie and Merv, not to mention my deceased father V. The new year also saw me receive my first blog award, from the wonderful Mental Nurse, who have also been kind enough to feature me in their weekly round-up of mental health blogging (TWIM) a number of times. Despite these positive developments, I spent the entire month in a depression of epic proportions, and I tried to kill myself in the early hours of the 16th. However, shortly after that, I was allocated a new psychiatrist (Dr M, mostly known as NewVCB) who prescribed the anti-psychotic Quetiapine (brand name Seroquel) on top of Venlafaxine to curb the voices and hallucinations, and also to act as a mood stabiliser. It has really been a force for good in my life. NewVCB later agreed with my self-diagnosis of complex post-traumatic stress disorder, so I was able to add that to my arsenal of diagnoses. The C-PTSD was mostly in relation to the sexual abuse I went through as a child, the full memories of which came back to me through discussion in therapy, the extent of which I finally admitted to C some weeks later. It is an ongoing psychotherapeutic topic.
A year on from commencement of writing, the importance that this blog now has in my life was underlined by an incident in which it initially looked like my family had found my online home (which would have been a huge disaster for all concerned). I now do not think they have, but my conclusion whatever the case is that I will not be silenced.
As you might expect, there are far too many to list. I would like to thank all that read here, and in particular those of you that leave comments – your interest and support make this project worthwhile (though of course I still maintain the journal primarily for my own benefit). There are a few people that I have to single out though.
Obviously A has been a source of immeasurable support and I’m fairly convinced I’d have done myself in were it not for him throughout the past year. There are no words great enough to convey my appreciation of his unwavering tolerance and care – I can only say that he is treasured and loved very much. CVM, K and Annie (internet friends that I have met or will meet) and my close friends Aaron, Daniel and Brian also deserve my gratitude.
In terms of my online friends, I owe particular thanks to Alix, Splintered Ones, Tiger, Lola, Kim, Wounded Genius, The Same Sky, Bippidee and Phil. I’d like to especially single out bourach, as it was her blog that inspired me to start this one. Thanks also to the aforementioned Mental Nurse for featuring my blather in TWIM from time to time, and for yesterday devoting a whole post (albeit a short one) to my crap
SOME STATISTICS AND TRIVIA
At the time of this writing Confessions has had 48,213 hits. The counter is only updated twice a day, so if you see any disparities (eg. the counter not updating despite you visiting several times), then that is probably why.
The overall most read post is ‘Suicide Attempt Epic Fail‘, which has presently been read 402 times. At the old URL, the most read post was ‘Signs of Childhood Sexual Abuse‘, which is still the second most read overall post with 332 hits. In both incarnations, ‘About the Author‘ has been the most popular static page, with a total hit count of 771.
The post most frequently reached through Google searches is ‘BPD vs C-PTSD‘, which with 329 hits is currently just short of being the second most read post overall.
The longest post, with over 8,000 words, is ‘A (Half-)Life in Therapy‘.
The busiest day on the blog to date was Friday 16 April 2010, when there were 614 visits. The quietest days were, unsurprisingly, last May when the blog was shiny-new. Since then my quietest period was about a week in April 2010 when the aforementioned worries about my family possibly reading the site surfaced. This was due to my efforts to hide the blog from their eyes, but of course had the knock-on effect of preventing others from reading too.
The busiest month so far was March 2010, when Confessions received a total of 10,529 hits. The quietest month was, unsurprisingly, way back in the beginning in May 2009 when there were 824 visits. Interesting point of comparison: this May is only just into its fourth day, and the hit count for it is 1,082 – half as much again in four days than were received in the whole month of May last year.
On the other hand, May 2009 was (ostensibly) my most prolific month of writing, as 23 posts were published during that period. I say ‘ostensibly’ as, as my writing here has developed, my verbosity has similarly developed and increased notably, so in reality even though I may have been writing less posts in other months, I was probably writing more words. The month with the least posts published was August 2009, where I only wrote a total of seven.
The sites that send me the most traffic are BlogSurfer, StumbleUpon and, of course, Twitter. The actual blog that refers folks here most frequently is Bippidee‘s
The most commented-on post was, perhaps slightly ironically, a password-protected post: ‘Things I Know That I Should Not Know‘ has 47 comments.
The most common search terms are variations on the blog’s title, ‘confessions of a serial insomniac‘. ‘C-PTSD‘ (and variants thereof) is currently the second most popular, with ‘i hate my therapist‘ (presumably for this), ‘letter to my therapist‘ (this) and ‘Julian Hendy‘ (this) also featuring prominently.
Some of my favourite search terms are ‘hallucinating gnomes‘ (referencing this), ‘dr bellend‘ (this), ‘dbt is patronising‘ (too many possible posts to list), ‘fuck you therapist i hate our relationship‘ (this again, I assume) and ‘arsecunt‘ (apparently this, which was otherwise fairly innocuous!). There are also a variety of searches ranging from fairly dull to outright weird that incorporate variations on the word ‘wank’ (because of this).
Including this, there are a total of 154 published posts. Including track- and pingbacks, there are 1,572 comments.
A POINTLESS YOUTUBE VIDEO TO PROVE THAT I CAN EMBED THE DAMN THINGS…AND MEH
The following song quite adequately sums up how my life has been in the year chronicled on this blog (and well before it at that)…
…not especially cheerful, I know. It hasn’t been an especially cheerful year. But still, something positive has come out of it; Confessions of a Serial Insomniac is my pride and joy. It might not be the best written blog, nor the most popular, nor useful nor helpful nor politically cor-bloody-rect in any way. But it’s mine – all mine – and I love it, follies and all.