Tag Archives: Mental Health

Maintaining?

One of the more difficult things I’ve been trying to tease out since my last post is how to maintain my determination and mood that I experienced that day.  I’ve seen my primary care doc since then, and one of her first questions upon me describing how I’ve felt (she put me on a new med in January) was, “Are you manic?” Which really made me dig down into the feeling a bit more, something I’ve resisted doing because one of my major stumbling blocks is my tenancy to over-analyze.

I didn’t feel like I’ve been manic. After a bit of back and forth with my doctor we decided that I was simply happy (perhaps really happy) and that it has been so long since I actually felt that way that the feeling was simply overwhelming me a bit. It seemed extreme because I’d been so low for so long. I felt fucking fabulous all last week. And now I feel like I’ve regressed a touch, so I’m trying to figure out how to pump myself back up again. I’ve been actively pushing back in my mind against my more negative thoughts and my often knee-jerk reflex to beat myself up in some manner. It sometimes makes me feel like I’m constantly arguing with myself inside my head. But even though it’s something I’ve resisted doing for a while (it sounded corny as hell to me in the past), it does seem to be helping. I find myself enjoying looking at pictures of myself again. The urge to nitpick is still there, but I find myself focusing more and more on the parts of the picture I do like.

Right now a lot of trying to pump myself up is also taking the form of really trying to figure out who I am, and who I want to be. My therapist mentioned that I often do that thing where I ‘would’ve, could’ve, should’ve’ myself to death, and while in small doses it’s not necessarily that unhealthy of a thing I get stuck in those loops and beat myself up with those thoughts. Reframing has been surprisingly helpful now that I’ve decided to try it. I’ve resisted it because it seems like it shouldn’t be that useful – I mean, it seems like I should still know what I was saying there, so why should it be that helpful. But it has been! It’s a simple thing that gets me moving forward again and breaking out of the downward spirals my brain gets stuck in. “I should’ve said this!” becomes “Next time I will say this.” Feels corny, yeah? But also been surprisingly useful. Spinning regrets into a more positive framework. “I want to be someone who walks everywhere,” which seems like a simple benign statement, has been picked apart a little and easily respun and even realized. It was also something that I think was helped greatly by my mind shift I wrote about in last post. Something about that day, moment, whatever, allowed me to go forward with less resistance. “I want to be someone who walks everywhere,” easily became, “Well, someone who walks everywhere is you know, someone who walks everywhere. So look, now I’ve decided to walk to and from my parking lot and take my dog out for twice daily walks and BAM! I am someone who walks everywhere.” It seems so simple, and yet when I was dragged down by depression and anxiety that change from the first to the second truly seemed insurmountable. And after that click, that shift, now for over a week now, I’ve been walking 3-4 miles a day when previously I didn’t even get in a 1000 steps a day oftentimes.

Saying to people that I’m lazy and like to sleep and not a morning person for so long now has been reflexive, and second nature. And yet, lazy people don’t walk 3-4 miles a day. So I don’t think that’s part of my identity at the moment (though my identity does seem to be something in flux at the moment, something shifting and evolving and still being discovered). I was texting with a friend a few nights ago, and something I said really struck me. I had mentioned how I had been waking up an hour before my alarm, and I had just been getting up and doing stuff, and I believe what I said was something about how it was weird, and I didn’t like it, and I didn’t even want to be a morning person. And I was struck that this didn’t seem to be true? I mean, it certainly used to be. Those reflexive self descriptors. But after I texted it I sat and stared and realized it didn’t ring true anymore. I WANTED to be a morning person. I was ENJOYING getting up even earlier, well before I absolutely had to. It just felt good, and I both wanted to be a morning person and seemed like I really was a morning person now (I almost fully attribute this to my new med kicking in and actually seeming to be helpful). This week, I’ve been sleeping through to my alarm, or almost, and I genuinely miss the extra time I had in the morning, and don’t enjoy how rushed I feel. So now I’m setting my alarm back a bit earlier. And I’m going to slowly push it back until I hit a time that feels RIGHT. Something I didn’t think I could trust myself to intuit before, and yet I really think I can now.

This post is a bit all over the place, but I think that’s a reflection of where I am now. I’ve burst out of the spiral and am looking around trying out all the things I wasn’t seeing before to see what fits and what doesn’t. So I’ll keep trying things on and keep plowing forward, and keep giving that fire that erupted in me some wood to fuel it. To keep it going even though it isn’t that initial furious hot burn it was those first few seductive days. I am a morning person. I am someone who walks everywhere.

What will I be next? I’m excited to find out.

 

A Swing

I feel a little odd posting this one, after that last post. I spent a dark evening and a dark next day. Pretty meh weekend overall. But felt good this morning! Mild bit of motivation, was hopefully I may be able to grasp on to that.

But now tonight, suddenly. Something happened, or maybe a series of somethings. And I just sat there, seething, looking at the clutter around me.

What the fuck.

I am fucking better than this.

Fuck you, roping me in on this bullshit. I AM FUCKING BETTER THAN THIS.

I can be fucking better than this.

I can fucking do it.

Fuck you if you don’t think so.

Fuck you for dragging me down into this.

Fuck you for making me think I deserved nothing better than to sit in this fucking stew.

Fuck that.

I AM FUCKING BETTER THAN THIS.

And I’m gonna fucking prove it.

Not Okay

I am not okay.

Where to begin. Everything is a complicated web of dizzying bullshit within my mind. I’m trying therapy and meds again. I thought I had been doing okay, doing better. Maybe I actually was for a while. I was trying so hard this time to be watchful for my people pleasing tendencies. For my desire to be better, be happier, to delude me into playing at being better despite how I feel on the inside. I thought I was watchful. I don’t know. Maybe.

Therapy has been circling to the one issue over the last month: my craving and needing of validation, of VISIBILITY to those around me and I am friends with, and my complete and utter inability to accept it when it appears. I deny it so hard, because it sounds so utterly pathetic and vain and narcissistic and INADEQUATE in the face of all the other problems and issues that other people struggle with. I hate it and I need it. But it doesn’t matter, it is what drives me and fails me and taunts me. It is me.

Today I brought it up of my own accord. It was something that had been nagging at me for weeks now, a group of people that are feeding me precious spoonfuls of what I want and need. It should have been affirming and validating and nourishing and instead we spent an all too short hour pounding at it in therapy and I feel on the edge of a breakdown because I cannot, in my heart of hearts, accept any of it, feel like I deserve any of it.

If you haven’t experienced the crushing of feeling a depressive episode barreling towards you while you are driving to a McD’s drive-thru for food to match your mood and try to contain your tears as you pay and get your bag of sad food I don’t recommend it. Mostly because it turns out that if I contain it that long when I get home I feel unable to release it and even though it would be so utterly debasing to sob into your double cheeseburger you would feel a release. But now you are denied even that meager catharsis.

It is so utterly painful and just fucking depressing to think you finally know at least part what you need in your life and feel it is completely out of your abilities to be able to accept it. To watch what you need come at you and instead use it as a tool to tear at yourself and not know how to stop it. To know logically it was all well meaning but it’s just ripping into you instead because you don’t know how to feel worthy of it.

Everything circles back to it. My constant state of anxiety, my unhappiness with my life, my inability to muster motivation for the slightest thing. I want to be seen by those a care about, to be heard, to be appreciated, but you can’t look into your past and see when it did (it did, logically I know this, it must have) happen anymore and since you can’t see it from when it happened before you can’t see how it is supposed to work now. How can I be happy with my life when I don’t think I’m worthy of any of it. How can I reach for my dreams when I don’t know how to look at it and see when I achieved something. How can I just BE when everything must be dissected and analyzed to death.

It sounds so pathetic and small.

But it is me.

I am broken.

I am not okay.

I want to be better. I don’t know how to get there.

I will keep trying.

*because I don’t want anyone to worry who reads this: I promise I’m just depressed and angry and frustrated and needing to get it out somewhere. Nothing more.