My Journey with Mental Health
This blog is simply talking from a subjective point of view based on my own personal experiences and battles I face every single day.
Mental health is a funny thing. It comes in all different forms, good and bad. I am talking today from the perception with someone battling with Depression & Anxiety Disorder as thats the goody bag that I was gifted and the two that I've been battling with for 5 years.
It's true what they say those who seem the happiest, the loudest (in some cases), the most confident, the centre of attention (bizarre I know for someone with Anxiety) & xyz... Those are the ones to keep an eye on as those are the ones who may be struggling the most.
For the longest time, I just believed I was going insane. The intermittent struggling to breathe episodes, the feeling sad without a reason to, not being able to explain why you feel this way, or why you cannot breathe because you simply do not understand it yourself.
Most people... Close friends/Family/Customers/Clients/Colleagues may describe me as a person with all the traits I mentioned above but thats exactly it.. When I seem to be at my happiest (sometimes I truly am happy) others I am simply playing down the ache in my gut that has formed randomly out of no where, the times I am the loudest it's usually a time when I'm trying to make someone laugh so that I'm laughing too & so that I don't cry. The times where I seem that I am a beaming ray of fucking sunshine and filled with confidence I feel the most insecure.
People with mental health suffer in silence for a long time for many reasons. They may not want to be seen as weak, they might not know how to tell someone they're struggling or how they're struggling because they do not know, they just know they're feeling fucking miserable with a side serving of psychotic.
The people painting on the smile, the bubbly, full of life individals who are struggling. They sometimes too show their bad days. They sometimes may come across as rude or moody or short but it's just simply because they have exhausted all their energy into faking being happy all the time and that's ok.
It's absolutely OK, to not be ok
People are allowed to feel sad without it being a mental health issue, but people with mental health issues are allowed to show sadness too.
Over the 5 years I have taken so much medication, my handbag was it's own pharmacy. At the time I felt like I had enough drugs holstered over my shoulder to last a lifetime if there were ever a zombie apocalypse . The insomnia pills, the beta-blockers, the A-D's by the hundreds.. pills & mg's. All of which made me feel like a zombie anyway.
I have tried different methods to try and help 'cure' my mental health. I'm sorry to say since the beginning of my journey I have learned that there is no cure however you learn how to deal with it. If you're someone who can relate to my state of mind and/or struggles then these might help too. These are some methods I have tried:
* Medication (I do not recommend, personally)
* Guided Sleep Meditation (youtube)/Meditation
* Talking with friends/family (A problem shared, is a problem halved)
* Breathing exercises
* Reading * Turning your cell off in the early evening * Taking a break from Social Media
* Counselling (Contact your local doctor who can set you up with free counselling) I was lucky enough to see my school councillor growing up before my diagnosis for several years and when she retired my Mom paid for me to see her privately post diagnosis)
* Writing a journal (Thoroughly recommend)
It's taken me 5 years to get to where I am today. I still have bad days, but I have a lot more good days. I've gone from being signed off work and bed bound for months at a time, not sleeping for days at a time to sleeping for several days at a time & frequent suicidal thoughts/attempts, at the largest size of my life to travelling across Canada, climbing summits & continuously pushing out of my comfort zones.
It's not easy, but it is worth it
The positive of social media; at a touch of a button you can be face to face with someone 1000's of miles away. I am very fortunate to be surrounded by the most amazing friends, family across the world. I know I always have someone who will be there for me if I need them, to chat to or buy me food (food = happiness) I am off all medication, I have shrunk my body weight significantly since the beginning of my journey but thats still up & down, I am truly learning to love myself & all the imperfections that that includes, both mental & physical. I still struggle, I still feel low, I still feel like a fucking sociopath but I am getting there.
If you or anyone you know is suffering in silence there are hundreds of articles/books/blogs that you can read about self-help or how to help a loved one. You can also, always reach out to me too. You can find me on Facebook & Instagram. I promise to always be someone you can speak to if you're in a similar situation. You are NEVER alone. There is always SOMEONE that you can reach out to.
Everything will be ok in the end, if it's not ok it's not the end
Be kind, always