Sunday, May 4, 2014

Tired of Hiding: I'm Not Okay

I'm tired of hiding. Still. If I'm going to talk about my mental illness, I need to talk about how bad it gets, too. I want to be fighting and strong and better than I was, but right now I'm not. I lie to myself and others often, because sometimes you can make the lies reality and because I'm still terrified for people to see me truly. Considering what a disaster it was to let someone in even just recently, I'm not certain this is a good idea, but if I don't let people see all of me.. what is the point? To live a lie is not really living much at all, even a partial lie at that.

So, the truth is that I'm not okay. My depression is overwhelming these days, and I'm lucky if I eat more than once a day and shower  every few. Last week I didn't make any of the appointments or commitments I had on. I sleep a few hours here and there over the course of a week or two until my body finally gives out and I stay unconscious for a day at a time to recover. All of my time is spent bouncing between various distractions to quell all the terrifying thoughts in my mind that will drag me down if I ever stop long enough to let them grab hold. I've been playing a lot of video games, watching tv, reading stupid things online, or writing. I can't really even tell you where the hours are going, but I manage to keep busy for most of them, which is impressive considering how many of them I'm awake for.

I haven't self-harmed yet (50 days). The distractions help with that, as well, but it's been a very close thing, especially this last week. At one point, I was opening my drawer to grab the tiny blade stashed within and then I noticed a bunch of new eyeshadows I'd put in there. It wasn't a purposeful distraction, but I decided to open them all up and swatch them. Then I started looking up inspiration online for how to use some of the colours, and by the time I realised what I originally intended, I felt better enough that the impulse had passed. I guess sometimes it's good having an exhausted and easily-distractible mind. (Case in point, I accidentally used this tab to have a wander on the internet then got confused later why I couldn't find my blog post.. hm.)

But the lack of motivation and functionality or the impulses to self-destruct are not even the worst part. The worst part is what happens if I'm not distracted, even for a moment. That's when everything I'm trying so desperately to keep at bay comes flooding back. I had a toilet break earlier tonight and when I crawled back into bed afterwards, I was crying. That was a total of five minutes. I am bombarded with thoughts all the time, ones that make me hurt, ones that make me angry, ones that make me try to tear myself down.

Obviously, I'm still coping with the recent devastating friend breakup, which is causing a lot of the strong emotions. To be fair, even though I still feel angry sometimes, I've put that mostly behind me. A lot of it is simply hurt at the unnecessary cruelty I experienced. It is simply something I cannot fathom, that no matter what was done, you could cause so much pain to someone you claimed to once care about. That you could act in ways to 'punish them' or refuse to even be a decent human being.. out of spite? I really have no idea, especially as we have so many of the same friends that we cannot be out of each other's lives completely. So, why continue the uncomfortable antagonism? It just makes everything so STRESSFUL. But then, I don't hate people, and I still don't hate him, as I've said. I will never understand.

And yeah, that's kind of how my brain goes sometimes, round and round in circles about things I can never figure out or reliving the myriad ways he hurt me, pinpointing the exact moment he betrayed me and turned into a terrible person, etc. And if it isn't about recent stressful events that are impossible for me to resolve (therefore I know all this effort and thinking is pointless, but I also have no ability to make it stop), then I'm thinking about how much important life stuff I've been unable to cope with and how overwhelmed I am and how I wish things would magically do themselves or simply go away, or whatever.

So, for now, I either let the thoughts come and let them drag me down ever further into my depression hole, probably ruining what little strength I have left at the moment that is keeping me from hurting myself... or I continue the endless distractions because that is what I need to do to survive. Because if I go down the self-destruction route, there's no guarantee it will end with simple self-harm. Once you give in to that impulse, it's a short leap to wondering why I even bother trying to resist and why am I still struggling to hang onto a life that is so miserable as to be barely worth living, and, especially, no one cares how miserable I'm feeling, so they won't care when I'm gone, either. It's a road I've been down far too many times before. I can already feel those thoughts creeping in when I'm less vigilant. It would be way too easy to let go, and fall all the way down that slippery slope. But I'm still here and I'm still fighting, in my own way. It just means I'm not able to do much else right now.

And that's mental illness. Sometimes it's easier and other times it's like it is now. But that is kind of how it always feels, that I have to keep the scary things out to feel anything remotely like normal on any given day. And some days you can't tell the truth from the lies, because you lie to yourself a lot to keep going, and your brain lies to you to try and make you stop. True and false, good and bad, black and white don't generally exist for me... it's all variable shades of grey of whatever it takes to make it to the next day, and the next one, and the one after that.

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