This blog post is inspired by Covid-19, Quarantine, Social Media and Mental Health. I apologize in advance for the lengthy post. I do have a lot to say. If you or you know someone struggling with thoughts of suicide or self harm seek help immediately or contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 800-273-8255. Staffers are there to help you get back on track.
Hello all you champions of words, it’s been awhile since my last post. Actually it’s been almost a year since the last blog post. Yes, I am writing. In fact I write everyday. It’s just that these days nothing I write makes up a coherent sentence let alone a full on blog ready for all to read. So what changed? Alot. I honestly don’t know where to begin. I hope you stay with me as we navigate through this rollercoaster ride. I promise it will all make sense in the end.
Maintaining mental health is very important. It’s a daily commitment. I find myself struggling with this. I recently read an article by Mental Health America “Ten Tools To Help You Feel Better And Stronger” listing tools like eating well, exercise and getting enough sleep needed to maintain a positive outlook. Also servicing as a reminder that utilizing other positive tools such as Vlogs, diaries, journals and hobbies are useful in keeping the mind occupied. Along with medication and therapy using tools is good for improving your mindset. I just recently moved from journal entries to voice recordings. I want to listen to my Chum in such a raw and stripped down way. I want to hear what bipolarism sounds like and not just articulate my experience in print. These recordings give me an accurate account of my episodes. What I heard is a person spiraling out of control. Nothing is coherent and nothing makes sense. What I discovered is since Covid my Chum has paid me a visit a total of nine times. This is both disturbing and alarming. It’s the truth I wasn’t prepared to face.
Everyday I wake up crying. Spending most days in uncontrollable tears. At first I thought this is just me being sensitive. Then I thought maybe it’s just a case of the mean reds. I finally realize I’m in pain. Real pain. Not only mental but physical. With all the tools and goals set in place I somehow managed to slowly slip back into my old ways of introversion and isolation. It’s a comforter and a dangerous vice I thought I had overcome. I fell back into old habits of self harm, over indulging, overspending and doing things to distract from what is the real root of my episode. It’s like recovering from drugs and drink. Do so well then falling off the wagon. It’s an Addiction I am all too familiar with.
And the Tony goes to….. what can I say? Me and Chum have become very good at covering up, masking and hiding his symptoms. There are signs but again family and friends aren’t quite sure how to approach me. I don’t make it easy either. I am the worst when it comes to asking for help. I think that’s the frustrating part of being in a relationship with me. I play that role of being that strong person everyone expects me to be. I don’t show any emotions that comes with my disorder in public. One of the tools listed in the Mental Health America article is connect with others yeah no brainer. I learned how to connect. I learned how to listen but I haven’t master the art of reaching out or really opening up. Sometimes I feel like no on cares but in reality we all are doing the same thing trying to be heard.
Other vices I allowed myself to indulge in loneliness, worthlessness, failure and fear. The best way of putting this is like getting a gun then carrying this gun with you everywhere. Even relaxed the gun is sitting in your lap. You look down and think is today the day? That’s my headspace at this moment. You just want to bring yourself to throw the gun out but you can’t. I am confused and baffled as how I got back here. To be honest I know how I got to this head space. These past six months have been a challenge. Quarantine has been my Chum best friend. Isolation, loneliness, worthlessness, failure and fear all have played their part. Where am I today? Right this second? I’m here trying to find hope. I’m here trying to survive. It feels like my hand is on the gun with my finger slowly pushing the trigger back. I’m tired of all this nonsense. I’m tired of the pain. It’s difficult to just do simple everyday acts that most take for granite. I’m tired of being sick both mentally and physically. The air in the room is getting thinner to the point where it’s hard to just breathe. Although I’m surrounded by love, I can feel the hammer on this gun cocking back will today be the day?
It’s a dark and lonely place this tunnel has been and yet I see a tiny light flickering at the end of the tunnel. My heart tells me to focus on that and let the love that surrounds me bring me back. If only my mind can have such hopes. No matter how down and out things seems to be my heart always have hope. My heart shows love, kindness and acceptance unconditionally. Momma always told us “We have to learn to love ourselves unconditionally no matter what life throws at you. Stand in your own truth.” So here I am learning to love myself again. Learning to stand in my truth again. Learning to accept who I am.
Until Next Time
Word Count 993