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Tuesday, July 15, 2014


I seriously hate to admit this, but I've found myself feeling like I'm in a depression.  Again.  I'm frustrated to be back here again, and I absolutely hate the way this feels.

I don't want to get out of bed in the morning, I don't want to go to work, I don't want to do anything.  I don't want to talk, I don't want to write, I basically don't want to do anything that might help me. 
But I am doing all those things, I am trying to help myself.  And the truth is, it fucking sucks.  Trying to help myself when I feel so depressed that I don't want to be helped is extremely difficult.  But I'm trying, because I have to.  I'm trying, because I don't want this to be my whole story.  I'm trying, because I've been through worse, and I know it will get better again (even if it doesn't feel like it right now).

I also have to confess, I did cut today.  Four times.  I am not at all happy with this, I am not proud.  I'm actually very ashamed of it, and I think the only reason I'm writing about it is because shame is a terrible thing to feel, and if I don't acknowledge it, it will eat me alive.

This relapse happened for a lot of reasons, and I'd be lying if I didn't see it coming.  I'd be lying if I said I did everything in my power to stop it before it got to this point.  But I did let it get to this point, and now the only thing left to do is ride it out and know it isn't forever.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

It's late and I can't sleep...

It's kind of late, and I kind of can't sleep, so I'm attempting to write something to kind of process my thoughts.  Ugh, I'm so tired, and want to sleep so badly, but I just can't... I feel so frustrated.

The past few days have been an emotional roller coaster, just constantly up and down, and I haven't really been able to figure out why.  Nothing in my life has changed recently, at least not significantly.  I'm feeling frustrated with myself, frustrated with the mood swings, and just frustrated with things in general.

I've been kind of letting my mind explore all day, but can't come up with anything that would explain this.  But now I've gotten to thinking about myself and my thinking habits.  I don't think anyone else is the problem, I think I am the problem.  I'm an indecisive person, and have an impossible time feeling absolutely 100% sure of anything, ever.  Three months ago today, I made the decision to get help and was voluntarily admitted to the hospital for ten days.  Since then, I've been staying (mostly) healthy.

The problem is, I have a long history of being a pretty self-destructive person.  When things are going well, I seem to almost get bored of it, and anything can become an excuse for a relapse.  I don't mean the issues with hypomania/depression, that's a whole other story.  I mean, if my life is going well, it's like recovery stops being a huge priority.  I just kind of... lose my focus on getting better, and then it's only a matter of time until I let all my old habits take over.

Right now, I've just realized that I'm letting this happen again.  I've lost my focus... my bedtime has been slipping back a little later each night, I'm less conscious of the foods I'm putting into my body, and I've stopped caring about making any progress in therapy.

Recovery is supposed to be a daily battle, and I've stopped fighting.

Which makes me realize... what I'm going through right now, in a sense, is my own fault.  I hate saying it, but the reality is, I can fuck around and blame whoever I want for as long as I want, but that doesn't change what this is.  This is something I got myself into.

I let my indecisiveness in almost every other aspect of my life drift into the most important thing I've done for myself in my entire existence... which, given my past experiences, is a pretty fucking dangerous thing to screw around with.  Instead of sticking with my decision to get better, I've started questioning it.  Like... Do I really want to get better?  What if I don't?  What if I'm better off back where I started?  etc etc etc

Yes, I've got a lot of shit going on in my life right now, but I think my absolute biggest source of frustration is myself.  And I fucking hate admitting that, because it fucking hurts.  And it drives me absolutely insane to know that nobody in my life has ever hurt me as much as I've hurt myself.

If anyone else treated me the way I've treated myself, quite frankly, I wouldn't have taken that shit for very long.

The worst part, though, is that I spend so much time going in circles with this stuff.. like, yes, I've done some pretty terrible things to myself, which makes me very frustrated with myself.. and then I get angry with myself for that, and it just.... I do not know how to be okay with myself.  At all.  I'm trying, but I'm not there yet.

I hate that I'm not okay right now.  I hate the way realizing this makes me feel.  And emotions kind of terrify me in their own kind of way.

And I hate that I can't just stick with my decision to get better.  How fucking ridiculous is it that I feel better when I'm sick?  As in, it's much more comfortable.  That's where the indecisiveness comes in even more.. do I want to live a long and healthy life?  Or a shorter one that, while miserable, will at least allow me to stay in my current comfort zone?

I really need to get back on track with my recovery, but right now, I feel like I don't even know how.  Scratch that.  It's not that I don't know how.  It's that I don't want to be uncomfortable.

But... I need to keep putting one foot in front of the other, because I know I'm sick of going in circles, and I know that if I can push through this, that will make it easier the next time it happens.  If I let myself keep moving backwards, then I know that in three months, I'll be sitting here feeling the same way, having exactly the same fight with myself.

I'm sick of fighting with myself over the same old bullshit.  I need to stay strong.  I will stay strong.


So today really isn't a great day.  It's kind of been a difficult week, and I'm still working on figuring out exactly what it is that's throwing everything off.  But..... Alex & Sierra's lyric video for "Scarecrow" was released this morning, and I'm kind of in love with it.  I've listened to it several times already, and it's just one of those songs that makes the day a little bit better.  Sooo if you haven't heard it yet, goooo check it out on youtube.  Like now.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

I've been absent.

I've been absent from blogging..  I know.

Things seem to be getting better lately, though, which is amazing.  I've started biking again, finally, and even though moods have been very up and down, I'm learning to live with it.

More than that, I think I might be learning to embrace it.  I'm learning that a diagnosis doesn't have to rule my life.  It's a part of my life, for sure, but it isn't everything.  I'm so much more than that... but more on that later.  :)

Thursday, April 10, 2014

"My head is like a prison cell."

I'm going to say this right now.  I've never written about this.  I have avoided this topic like the plague.  But here goes...

Last night, I was struggling with body image.  I was seriously hating on my body.  I struggled with the way I look, and that just got me going even more than ever on one of the most personal issues I have with my body... my scars.  Sometimes it feels like my story is written on my body in such a physical way that there's no denying that it was real (not that I would want to).  I kept thinking that I wish my story could be written entirely on paper.  On paper, I can control what it looks like, and, ultimately, I can at least look away from paper.  Paper isn't a part of my body.  But my story isn't written entirely on paper... it's also on my skin.  My arms, my legs, it's there.  It can't be denied.

I always worry that when people see my scars, they judge me without hearing my story.  I worry that they see the scars and don't care about anything further than that because, hey, people who cut are all crazy, right?  Wrong.

So last night, I kept thinking about how my scars remind me of the battle I've been facing for almost a decade now (seriously... September will mark 10 years since the first time I harmed myself).  It hurts to be reminded of the pain of my past so constantly... and the fact that it hurts me made me want a distraction.  A physical distraction.  Quite frankly, it made me want to cut myself.

Which honestly, I realize, seems absolutely ridiculous, because the physical scars are what had me upset in the first place (among other things).

I think what it really comes down to, above all else, is that I don't know how to feel.  I've been numbing myself for so long that I don't know how to feel anything without being overwhelmed by it.  I can't feel anything without starting a fucking war with myself in my head.

So that's where I was at last night.  But I got through it.  And I got through it without harming myself.

I did a lot of writing, a little yoga, and I felt better.  I went to sleep, woke up this morning, and had a really great day today.

Sometimes, when I feel the way I did last night, I feel trapped, like my body is a cage. 

I'm feeling a lot again tonight again, so I've been writing again.  It helps.  I honestly believe that writing can be more therapeutic than anything else.

Today was a good day, but that kind of scares me.  I know that sounds ridiculous, but I've had so many experiences over the past couple years that lately when I have a day that's anything above "mostly okay" for no specific reason, I start worrying (yay anxiety....).  My mind goes to this place where I start thinking, "What if it isn't just a good day?  What if it's the beginning of a hypomanic episode?"

Sometimes, I miss being hypomanic.. because who doesn't love feeling like they have a ton of energy and feeling super productive?  I know I'm actually not at all productive in this state because my mind is constantly going and going so I can't really focus long enough to get things fully accomplished, but it's that feeling..

It's what comes after that that scares me, though.  It's the inevitable crash into depression.  It's everything that comes with the depression.  It's the not wanting to get out of bed... feeling exhausted despite having done nothing that day... the constant, persistent, never-ending negative thought patterns... the feeling of being out of control... the moment when I get so desperate to escape that I take apart razors to get to the blades.. the moment when I don't have patience for that so I use scissors instead.. the moment where I give up and stop caring about whether or not I continue breathing... the moment where I have to go to the hospital.  It doesn't always get to that point, that's worst case scenario, but my mind just goes there sometimes.  I worry about the possibility all those things happening again.  It's not somewhere I ever want to be again, even though it's happened more than once.

This is what goes through my head when I wake up and just have a really great day.  Seriously, I'm afraid of being happy, I'm afraid of being depressed.  I'm afraid of feeling because I've spent almost half my life trying to numb myself.

Ten days clean (yeah, I'm back to that, I know), and instead of being proud of myself for this small step forward, I'm scared of what the next big emotion I feel might be.

But... despite all this, I'm sitting here, I'm breathing, and I'm fine.

This is progress, because I'm allowing myself to feel these things as they come.  I'm not numbing it.  I'm not numbing it because I don't want to look back on my life someday to realize I never allowed myself to fully feel what I should have.  Because emotions are one of the most important parts of being alive.  They need to be felt.  The good, the bad, the terrible, and the absolutely fucking amazing.

I can't say I'll always be this strong, I can't say "forever"... because the thought of allowing myself to feel everything and not harm myself for the rest of my life, forever, is still seriously, completely, entirely, absolutely overwhelming to me.  I'm taking this one day at a time.  It's the only way.

But for today, or at least what's left of it, I'm going to try and just let a good day be a good day.  That's all it is, and it's amazing.  <3

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

"What screws us up most in life is the picture in our head of how it is supposed to be."

I've always had an image in my head about what I thought my life would look like.  About where I would be by now, the things I would be doing, the things I would have done by now, the list goes on.

My life has not turned out at all how I had imagined.  And I think, possibly, I might be thankful for that.

Yes, I'm ultimately the same person I have always been, but a lot has changed.  I'm not a different person, I am a person who has grown.

Something I have learned all too well recently is that recovery means progress.. not perfection.  I still struggle, I still have bad days.  Often.  I still have nights where the pull to cut is strong.  Very strong.  I still have ups and downs.  A lot of them.

I've learned that my decision to get better does not erase any of my problems.  They're all still there, and aren't going away any time soon.  But my decision to get better does mean that I am now working to get through my issues.  And reminding myself every day that feeling terrible isn't going to kill me.

I think acceptance is still a big struggle for me.  It always has been.  Not struggling to accept others, but struggling to accept myself.  Struggling to accept my life as it is.  And struggling with the possibility that others may not be 100% accepting of who I am (more on that later).  But I'm working on it.. I'm making progress every day.

And progress doesn't mean having a good day.  Progress means getting through a bad day and knowing I have the strength to get through the next one.  Progress means making sure I get enough sleep, get to therapy, think as positively as I can, and take care of myself in general.  Progress means taking things one day at a time, one step at a time, and continuing to do the next right thing for myself.

It doesn't mean I'm "fixed", it doesn't mean I'm entirely better, it doesn't mean my problems don't exist.  But it does mean I'm still going in the right direction overall.  And if I take one or two steps backwards, it doesn't erase all the work I've done.  It just means I need to work to get moving in the right direction again.

It also means not getting wrapped up in the fact that my life is not at all how I expected it to be, but letting myself live life as it comes each day.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

"You no longer have a secret, you have a story."

I have to admit, I was absolutely terrified to share the part of my story that I did last Monday.  I was scared of how people would react - what they would say, how they would feel, and more than anything, whether or not it would forever change the way the people in my life look at me.

Aside from the messages I have received, and the comments posted on Facebook, I really don't know what people are thinking about my experience, or even just the fact that I felt that sharing my story was something I chose to do.  Days later, I still worry about it a little bit.. but one thing I have realized, is that it doesn't matter.

What does matter, is the fact that I made the decision to stop keeping my struggles a secret.  Because the thing is, everyone has their own set of struggles and personal problems.. and I felt like by pretending everything in my life was fine, I was only encouraging my problems to eat me alive.  It's like keeping everything a secret was only encouraging that secret to grow into something bigger, something much more toxic.

After opening up and sharing what I've been going through, nothing has changed.  I'm still the same person, I'm still dealing with bipolar disorder, still trying to recovery from a decade-long battle with self-harm, and still fighting like hell to get better.

The one thing that has changed is the fact that I'm not hiding it anymore.  And that, on its own, is a huge weight lifted off my shoulders.  It's one less thing weighing me down.  And to be honest, I feel as though that is making a very big difference in my journey to recovery.

Not only that, but after deciding to share my story, I have had a lot of people contact me... some with words of encouragement, some sharing parts of their own story, and some just to say that they care.  To everyone who has taken the time to do this, I cannot thank you enough.  Your words have given me, and continue to give me, motivation to stay strong.  You are all a huge source of inspiration, and I love each and every one of you.

Over the past couple weeks, I feel like things have finally started to make a shift in a more positive direction.  This is very much a daily battle, but I am so thankful that it is a battle that I still have the opportunity to fight.  If things had gone differently a couple weeks ago, that may not have been the case.  I am grateful for the fact that I'm still here, writing this, and working my ass off to get better.  I'm still constantly reminding myself that recovery is possible, and it is worth it (and yes, I seriously just put a sticky note on my mirror that says that).

I have very strong faith that I can handle this.  There are going to be good days, and there will be bad days, but I keep reminding myself to just keep putting one foot in front of the other, and I will get through it.