Mental illness… it’s a funny one… not funny like ‘haha’. Funny like, ‘tricksy little bitch that sets out to ruin your day and you have to fight against it on the daily just to function like a semi-normal human being and sometimes you just want to cry because fuck you mental illness’ (I purposely didn’t use a comma here, anyone that knows me will know that is how I actually talk).
I’ve said it before, but I will say it again… mental illness does not discriminate. It doesn’t only affect those that have a shitty life. You could have everything going for you and mental illness will just creep in all ‘Oooh hey there you seem like you have it all… it would be a shame if something were to… FUCK. WITH. YOUR. BRAIN. MOOHAHAHAHAHAHA!!’
Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve had some trauma and heartache in life. I have had things happen, even recently, that I think completely justifies my feelings. That being said, I have also experienced a kind of happiness I didn’t even know I could feel. I have started to feel like my life is making sense. Finally a reason for all the shitty things that have happened to me, it all brought me to this place, this place where I could be so gloriously happy. Now there are those that will see this happiness and joy I have found, and assume that means I am cured. As if mental illness cares if I found some happiness. It doesn’t. I still get anxious, I still fight daily with my eating disorder and a lot of the time with body dysmorphia. I still get overwhelmed by all the things I have to try and process and go into shut down. I have still felt sad (I am grateful it hasn’t been full depression, but I still get a little lost). This has brought much confusion and in turn more anxiety to my life at times lately. For the last few weeks I have just started to bury my head in the sand. Don’t want to have that difficult conversation? Avoid them. Don’t know how to process something that is happening? Find any distraction I can, go to the happy bubble and just ignore it. Feel dissatisfied with a certain area of my life? Buy things. Buy all the things. I haven’t really known what to say to people, so instead I have avoided most people and only really made time for a select few. I have tried countless times to write a blog, but the words have just been so jumbled in my head that I can’t string a sentence together.
The reason I am able to do this right now is because last week I had a mini meltdown, then I reached out, admitted I was struggling and that I needed some time off work. It hasn’t been long and I can’t say that it cured me (if only!) but man has it helped. I’ve felt ridiculously guilty for not being in work though – I literally took two full days off, that’s it – yet I have felt so bad because of the happiness bubble. I have told myself ‘you can’t be so bad that you need time off when you can still feel some happiness’. Well to that inner bitch thought, I say SCREW YOU! Why should I have to wait until I feel like I want to die before I will give myself a damn break?! Why do we do that to ourselves? Plenty of people will take a sick day from work if they have a cold and not feel guilty because it’s not pneumonia. I have had to be reminded of this in work and in life recently. I kept telling my friends who were struggling ‘you can’t pour from an empty cup, take care of yourself too!’ it took a few people insisting that I take my own advice before I actually did it.
I will say that again just in case anyone needs that extra push like I did… YOU CAN’T POUR FROM AN EMPTY CUP, TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF TOO!
I got so good at self-care on my recovery journey, but at the moment I have been pretty rubbish at it. Today is the first real day that I stopped worrying so much about getting everything done and just took the day as it came. My anxiety has been a royal bitch this evening but I have definitely stepped up my self-care game and put down the guilt card for a few hours. My life at the moment is bittersweet – I have found happiness and love, but it doesn’t cure years worth of pain. I am better than I have ever been in some areas of life and completely lost, dazed and confused in others. It’s going to take a little time, but I am going to somehow process the madness going through my head and get back on track with my recovery journey. I’ve been letting that shit slip and it is time for me to work it out. I took my wallow time, I gave myself a break, now it’s time to kick some ass like the warrior that I am.
Don’t assume that mental illness goes away just because some things are going right.
Don’t forget to check in on your people.
Be patient with them, just because it looks like they are happy, doesn’t mean they are not still struggling with life.
Lastly… Stay strong warriors! ❤