I am an ex-patient of ICU ( May- June 2015) and an art student currently studying at the Glasgow School of Art. I recovered physically much quicker than expected through grit and determination to be 'better'. The only issue was I back tracked the mental aspect of my recovery- I was not given much mental support leaving me feeling empty and at loss. Now just over a year down the line I have found that, in looking back over my recovery period, the way I have learned to overcome my PTSD has been through my artwork itself; in dealing with my dreams and memories from ICU it has enabled me to come face to face with them and almost hold a conversation with them. I feel that the method and distribution process of the work I produced earlier this year could be used by other people in their recovery process. In basic terms the work I produced was part of my own self initiated therapy. My work itself became a series of videos that people received via emailed links when they signed up to a 'fictional' company I created. Through merging the reality and the fiction of my dreams in a visual way I became much more confident to step past them.
The videos themselves, although initially distressing, helped me to face my 'fears' as such and has allowed me to progress with my life ( I can't say it has been easy but I have been learning). After reading about the treatments I could have received, such as CBT, I realised that I had almost been doing that for myself.
I have been thinking that this method I developed could be modified and used to help other people who are in the situation I was in ( and in some aspects still currently am.) I could work with past patients of ICU to open up a conversations about the delirium they experienced and by doing this aid them in their own personal physiological recovery, and dealing with the symptoms of PTSD.
Just wanted to get the idea out there and see what people think, any comments, ideas or queries would be so helpful,
Kate Frances Lingard