The good, the bad and the ugly..

When you live with a mental illness or two, you find that things ebb and flow. Like the pull of the moon on the ocean. 

 Certain things can lift your mood right up and other things drag it so far down. Many people struggle most with the latter. No one really likes a low mood, whether you’re ‘

depressed’ or not, but some people actually struggle with the lighter side of things.

 You see, having depression does funny things to your brain, you begin to think that you shouldn’t ever be feeling happy if you have depression. When you’re coming out of a low slump and feel that little burst of ‘today isn’t that bad’ it can make you feel like a fraud.

Like your diagnosis, ‘your label’ is the be all and end all of your existence and that you should always fit into that stereotype. 

When people say things like ‘you don’t look depressed’ it could be fatal. That person may already be at the end of their tether. Using all the spare energy they can muster to put on a brave face and go out that day and you’ve just crushed everything with 4 little words. 

If you know someone with depression, or someone opens up about their mental illness, try to think before you make a flippant remark. Try ‘how are you doing?’ Or ‘do you need anything?’ 

Those 4 words can make a difference for the better – this gives you one person that cares. One person that is there for you that day and sometimes that is all it takes to change the mindset of a person. 

Please be nice to people, you don’t know what is going on under the surface, behind that bubbly smile. 
Suicide and suicidal thoughts are very real problems that are not as outwardly shown as other things. The death of person simply because they have a chemical imbalance that tells them death is the better option than tirelessly fighting a losing battle. I don’t think we will ever completely eradicate suicide, but we can certainly make huge progress towards making it less common. 
Right now, I’m doing moderately okay. I’m not jumping for joy but I’m also not planning the route the bridge. 

The little things 

Trying to find the good in life is hard when everything feels so empty and so black.

Obviously, I’m alive, clothed, housed and fed. That’s four pretty damn good things, and I am grateful. I have a little close knit bundle of wonderful friends – 3 or 4 extra specials, and my family too. Of course there is pupdog as well. I know I am very lucky, and I am not ungrateful for these things. 

It’s just hard to feel happy with your lot when you can’t feel anything but emptiness and overwhelming sadness on a daily basis. 
I’m drowning more often than I’m not lately. I’m not wading through life with little difficulty and water in my wellies. I’m being dragged around by a ferocious ocean and comtantly getting pulled under. I’m still trying to focus on the shore, on my safe haven and making my way back to a relatively normal existence on solid ground. 
I can’t get a doctors appointment to save my life (quite literally!) and it’s increasingly frustrating trying to fight a losing battle. I’m tired. I’m anxious. I’m not sleeping and I am  struggling to keep my thoughts on the little things. 

Trying to keep my little business running, to make ends meet, to meet the needs of my dog and generally cope with being an adult is harder than I hoped right now. The weather is all over the place and planning anything is practically impossible when my brain doesn’t want to play ball. 
Still. I try. I keep trying. I’m hunting for the little things. The sunshine, the butterflies, brioche and coffee, technology, a good book. My bed, my favourite hoody, somehow not many of these things bring me the joy they once did. 

Conquering Demons

I hear this so much. You need to conquer your demons. You’ll be better once you get them off your back. People say this like us mental illness sufferers haven’t heard it before. It’s about as useful as telling someone who is clinically depressed to ‘cheer up’
We know there are demons in our lives, we know that it’s ‘in our heads’ considering it’s a problem with our brains. 
We need people to offer support, not to offer solutions. Sometimes we just need to let it all out, clear a little quiet corner of our noisy, busy minds. 
Ask if there’s anything you can do, or if listening is enough. Don’t try and tell me to get more exercise, to eat better, to do this and that because you hear it works for Sally up the road. 
I’m drowning lately, my demons are gripping me by the throat and holding me underwater, the last thing I need is someone telling me that I can fix it if I just try this & that. 
I very nearly ended my life last night. The exhaustion is overwhelming. The emptiness is overwhelming. Everything is overwhelming. If it wasn’t for me being held up by a stranger who wanted to talk about my dog, I probably wouldn’t even be sitting here typing this right now.
People say they’re proud of how far I’ve come, little do they know, I’m struggling more now than ever.