Tag Archives: mental health

Yes, I’m crying and I’m proud

Recently, I have taken up crying in random public places. Work, the mall, parties, the metro station, at the gym, etc. Tomorrow I plan to cry at lunch (because the tears will appropriately salt my food).

If you’ve seen my beautiful rosy, red face covered in salt water and snot, I know you might think I’m a bit crazy. Or, at least, really sad. I want you to know that I’m learning not to be ashamed of my tears by performing this exhibition art.

Ok, so it’s really not planned or exhibitionism. I really am sad as fuck. But, the uber cool thing about crying EVERY FUCKING PLACE IN JOHANNESBURG is that I give no fucks what you think and I know you really don’t care. And, its ok to be sad.

Just in case you feel insane guilt over crying, I’ll say it again.

Let those tears make purple rain across your beautiful face. Purple rain. Purple rain.

Life is hard as those tootsie rolls that are really too old to give out as halloween candy, but some asshole decided it was a good idea to give to you as reward for your fancy ass costume. I just want you to know that I wouldn’t do that to you. But, the point remains. Shit be hard. And, you are allowed to be upset about it.

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I swam with mer-people

Ok, so they were seals but someone a long time ago probably thought they were mermaids and that’s good enough for the purposes of this posts.

I’m not going to lie, I was super excited about this. By super excited, I mean that I was swee-ing all the way to the seals. Also, I just wrote sqeals which is kind of a pun.

I didn’t start panicking until I was in the middle of the ocean which I take as a success (although clearly my self preservation instincts are rusty). Of course I chose to snorkel for the first time in the middle of the ocean with wild animals BUT IF I DIE, I DIE. Snorkeling reminds me kind of hyperventilating which is where the panic came in, but I overcame and kind of just let go. The ocean took me and I actually enjoyed seeing the seals dance around me. The waves were a bit choppy and I swallowed a large volume of salt water, but I had a lot of fun.

My husband, in the other hand, did not feel the same. This feeling was most aptly expressed in the large volume of vomit he expressed at the end. The marine has no sea legs.

Here are my sad photos of the seals.

Can I just start telling people I don’t want to talk to them because their entire being makes me anxious?

Have you ever met someone that literally makes your internal anxiety organ twitch? Not a slight twitch either – like a full on muscle spasm?

I meet people like that sometimes and I feel as though I should have a universal pass that says:

Picture1
my calling card

Personally, I’d like to think they’d be so caught off guard my clear lack of understanding of human anatomy that they’d wouldn’t notice as I try to melt into the closest wall.  But, they might believe the anxio-brachial organ exists.  Does it sound official enough? Someone let me know.

While we are at it,  invisibility is really something I have to work on.  Every once in a blue moon, I have days where I wake up and say, “You know what! I feel fancy today.  I would like to be noticed.” Without fail, two hours later someone does that exact thing.  Except the exact thing is a man on the street groping you.  The universe basically said ‘Fuck you” and I went back to hiding in my house.  Or under my desk.  Or in my bed.  Or hiding behind a food stand, because I saw someone from work and my first instinct is to run in the other direction.  My survival instincts are clearly intact even if they are usually flawed in logic.  I have a great penchant for hiding from people I don’t want to see, but then I ignore a bladder infection for three days for no reason and don’t tell anyone.  When I kick the bucket, it’s going to be for ignoring something strange and some person will find my body 6 days later.  The autopsy will show something mundane and everyone will be confused and suspect fowl play.  Flowers of Lys, I say (GoT reference).

I’m not sure how I spun that paragraph to end with me dead, but oh well.  The entire point of this post which I’ve done a great job deviating from is that some people make the anxio-meter go up 100 points and I’d like a pass in dealing with them.  Inevitably, I fumble and they freak out because usually they are people in some kind of position of power (shocking, I know) and then I spend three hours trying figure out how to ask them a question or re-type an email 85 times.

You know who I really need those cards for, though.  Those people in the mall who want to stop and talk to you about your skin.  Also, god. Anyone in a mall stand who accosts you instead of following the WELL KNOWN RULE THAT NO ONE WANTS YOUR HELP THEY JUST WANT TO SHOP QUIETLY WITH THE LEAST AMOUNT OF SOCIAL INTERACTION POSSIBLE.  Wait, is that just me?

 

 

An open letter to a person who feels too much

Hello, you.

I know you thought I couldn’t see you back there hiding, but I see you shining like the sun on a cloudless day.
You are not invisible.  You may wish to be.  You may hope to skate by blending in with that wallflower pattern on the fly.
I see you.
I see you when your emotions flood your brain.
I see the lies those fickle demons tell you.
I see all the good you do and hope no one says anything.

I know you think that you are too much.
You feel too much.
You want too much.
You say too much.
You are not.  You are.
You are here.

You love people with the force of a goddamn waterfall.
You hurt like a baseball bat to the mouth.
And on those special days when you let yourself be free, you are Apollo.
Daring to fly close to the Sun.
Taking that orb in your sweet hands and firing the flame that is your soul.

I wish you freedom from your brain, from people, and from expectation.
I wish you freedom to just be.
I wish you adventure in the face of utter terror.

I wish you hope and dreams that are never afraid to say “I want this.”
I wish you the courage to say “no,” instead of making some cock-eyed notion of self is presented to you. You don’t need to be anyone else, anymore.
I wish you a steady hand to drive your fears back to the farm.
And, I wish you matches and lighter fluid to all those nightmares that made you believe you are too much. All those voices in your mind and surrounding you that ask for more than their worth.

I wish you destruction for rebirth.

Because I see you.
You are here.
You are everything you need to be.
No more and no less.

You.

Fuck me, I need therapy

Again.

If you are anything like me, I know you’ve had that thought. Your perfectly respectable (also perfectly fucking annoying) mental illness is acting up again and you get to a point, after you’ve cried 12 times in one day, had vicious mood swings, and have the anxiety shits for three days, where you are contemplating handing over $175 for 50 minutes to someone you love but can’t afford.

I’m sitting here with her email address up, wondering if I should take the plunge. Deep down I know what she will say. In fact, I can name them:

1. You’ve gotten married, moved, and basically have no job. That’s a lot of personal stress.

2. Do you have a routine? (In case you are wondering, no I don’t because I’m a fucking child and I’m floundering in some level of personal crisis.

3. Are you taking your meds appropriately? No, because once again clearly I can’t be trusted with my own well being.

4. Are you eating? Yes, I’d like to eat a gallon of ruffles chips right now, but this motherfucker resisted.

5. Are you pregnant? No. Not unless my unborn child is a ninja. (No, really. I checked because I’ve been convinced I’m losing my fragile little mind. Yes, my ass actually took a test out of sheer desperate in a weird parking lot bathroom).

6. This is a lot of transition and change for you to deal with. Do you have a support system? I can’t really bring my anxiety and depression with me to dinner. Unless they were wine bottles named anxiety and depression, then I could do that. I’m trying with people. I generally kind of suck at peopling. I’m trying with people. I generally kind of suck at the social scene. If I’m trashed, I’m wonderful but I don’t think that’s a great way to handle things that make my brain shake.

7. Are you going outside? Yes. I have to walk everywhere. Yayyyyy, physical activity.

8. What’s acting up? Well, I’ve had five anxiety attacks in four weeks (did you know there is a differenxe between an anxiety attack and a panic attack? I did not. I’ve been using the wrong vocab all this time). Then the depression sucks the air out of this windbag and promotes pathetic amounts of slouching.

9. Do you think this has anything to do with returning to a similiar country as the one you were physically attacked in 2012? Probably, but I wish it were more obvious. I try not to let it stop me from doing stuff. Then this guy touched me unnecessarily last week (because stroking my side is a great way to flirt with a random pedestrian) and I just turned around and walked back home. We got stopped by the police and my hands wouldn’t stop shaking. So, maybe its acting up more than I’d like to admit to myself. I don’t want it to act up. That’s the thing about someone using a metal pole to hit a home run with your head, it doesn’t really matter if you want it to act up or not. It just does. The other night I was at a function and it was outside so it was pretty dark. The shadows reminded me of people running across the highway in Nigeria and for some reason I couldn’t handle them.

10. How’s this effecting your marriage? It makes me hard to deal with. It’s exhausting. I feel guilty. I’m trying to bury it in the backyard but then the bitch floods.

That’s probably covers a lot of questions she would ask. She’d probably tell me to not be so hard on myself which is generally not my greatest talent.

I guess the thing that makes it worse is feeling like I need to pretend to be ok. Generally, people want to hear that you’re good and life is instagram level fun and move on. I understand that. But, life is messy, people are complex, and joining yourself with another human is an ongoing series of unfortunate events with little peaks of nice-nice.

I guess I don’t have to pretend, but at the same time no one wants to be the debbie downer in a conversation. I mean, I don’t even want to feel like this so no one wants to hear my shit.

Also, I’m pretty sure there is no Wi-Fi on this flight which will severly impact the next ten hours of my life.

Update: I survived.

Wake up

Tw: suicide

If you’ll do me the honor of putting on Wake up by NF while you read this, it’ll set the mood.

I’m sitting at the feet of the Nelson Mandela statue right now listening to this song on repeat.

Someone good committed suicide recently. Someone so kind. Someone too fucking good for this world. And I’m so goddamn torn up about it, that I can’t even form sentences.

She was one of many who were plagued by monsters. The kind that attack your mind and make everything so dark that you can’t find your way out. She fought them to death.

It’s so easy to write off suicide as weak. It’s so easy to say “they should of decided to live.” It’s so easy to shame those who suffer from mental illness. It’s so easy to forget the people who are different than us. It’s so easy to judge another’s suffering by ambiguous standards. It’s so easy to write a shitty blog post about suicide.

I’m so tired of being embarrassed and ashamed that sometimes I can’t keep my depression and anxiety locked away. I’m so tired of running away when the panic sets in. I’m so tired of hearing the excuses about mental illness. I’m so tired of hating myself. I’m tired of fighting.

I want people to wake up. I want communities to stop pretending they don’t play a part in suicide. I want people to not give up on us. I want you to stop excluding someone your friends call weird. I want people to stop walking away when they don’t understand a panic attack. I want you to go after the kid crying at work. I want you to ask how are you and not be afraid of the answer. I want you to reach out to someone you know and ask if they are ok. I WANT YOU TO ASK HOW TO HELP SOMEONE SUFFERING.

All it takes is one action. One moment. To change a person’s life.

I know what you are thinking. Families feel the strain of mental illness. Husbands and wives watch the person they love become a shell and they don’t know what to do. Sisters and brothers get tired of checking on their sibling. Friends are tired of the person turning down their invites. Sometimes they just want this disease to go away.

I get it. We get it. We need to stand up with our pain. We need to scream “here it fucking is. I carry this monster with me and I am not ashamed.” We need to ask for help. We need to get help. We need weapons to keep fighting. We need to get up when a hole in the ground seems like a great idea. We need to stop believing we are worthless because it’s not true. We

I want you to know what ever monsters that you carry with you, they are not bigger than you. You keep on fighting. This world is not better without you. Put down that knife and back away from the fucking ledge because we need you here. We need you.

So many of us have felt that temptation. So many of us planned it. So many of us almost did. So many of us tried.

I’ve been on that bridge, friend. I’ve wanted to watch all my pain fall with me. It takes everything to pull yourself back from the edge. Don’t let those monsters take you. They don’t deserve your life.

Two Truths and a Lie

It seems like an ongoing theme in my life that the truth isn’t really that important to other people. But, it’s important to me.

Some of the most shitty parts of my life vice getting slapped in the head with a metal pole and the violent depression that followed revolves around lies.

I’m not sure what it is about the difference between honesty and dishonesty that makes me feel unhinged but there’s nothing like a well timed lie and the eventual discovery to break my sanity into a million pieces.

I go through the seven stages of grief every single time like it won’t happen again.

And spoiler alert, it always happens again. I’m not sure why I never see it coming because its like a bullet train that’s about to hit me in the face.

Good therapy will tell you that people don’t change and the only person you can control is yourself. But, people don’t change, right? So, what the shit am I supposed to do when faced with this existential crisis again?

If I’m honest, this has been a problem with all the guys I dated except one. That one, to my knowledge, was unfledgingly honest and at that particular age I was too clingy.

A few years ago, I thought I worked really hard not to be clingy and insecure but then I found out about internet sexting and how that can ruin ones self esteem. I won’t tell you all is well and that it never creeps up on me like my period exploding at 4 am. It does and it hurts almost as much as the first time I was cheated on physically.

It must be me, right? I’m hard to be honest with. I don’t have good reactions to the truth. As another former lover would say “you didn’t want me to do xyz anyway so I didn’t tell you the truth.” This person was right. I didn’t want xyz to happen. And then it did. Over and over again.

Does anyone ever check up on old lies like they are friends? Is that just me? If we are trying to delve deep in my psyche, I guess I like hurting myself. I try not to sit around and do this because its bad for my mental health and the words obsessive and “stalker” get thrown around but I’m tired of hiding the fact that this hurts. And, lets be honest. Y’all do it too.

So, it hurts. It makes me feel unhinged. It may be dramatic and seem petty, but you know what?

I have a lot of fucking feelings and a lot of faults. And the shit that hurts the most is never going away, so all that’s left is to put my brain back together and keep trucking.

Because there is one thing I know for a fact. My life isn’t ever going to get easier. I just have to deal with the hard punches as they come and keep getting up. Eventually, I will get stronger or I will die.