It’s been a while.

I haven’t felt the need to write lately, mainly because I feel like no one cares what I have to say. But tonight, I have that heavy, anxious feeling in my chest as if words are slowly filling up my veins, and if I don’t let them bleed out, then I will undoubtedly explode.

There are so many topics, sentences, and questions flowing through me – how do I pick out what to write down? After months upon months of nothing, why is this happening now? Words often flow through easier through my veins when I am in a state of depression, so my mental stability comes into question. I know I have been feeling more down and emotional lately, but surely my body realizes that I don’t have time to fall into a state of depression. Right?

Time has made a habit out of making the loss of a loved one easier. Time, this time, has failed me. It has been two years, three months, and six days since I lost my father. The longer he’s gone, the more of my life he’s missing, and the more it hurts like no pain I have ever experienced before. I can feel the emptiness swell through my body like a disease that eats every ounce of energy and happiness that I have left. Mannequins enjoy life more than I do sometimes.

I earned my Associate’s Degree (although useless, it’s still somewhat of an accomplishment), graduated with honors, on the Dean’s List, and a member of two National Honor Societies. You weren’t there, and honestly, I didn’t really want to be there either. I transferred to the university that I swore I’d never go to. I got into the Social Work program, and I’m a member of a couple of organizations. But I haven’t been able to tell you that. You haven’t been able to tell me that you’re proud and that you love me.

That’s what hurts so deeply, Dad. My life is moving forward without you in it. Some days, I want to just stand still. I want to quit, go back to bed, and never wake up. I want to be where ever you are. You are supposed to be here, at least until I’m done with school and get married. No twenty-four year old should have to lose their father. I’ve thought I was an adult since I was a teenager, but losing you was a harsh slap in the face. I still need my daddy, so come back. Come back and guide me, love me, and show me all of the things that I still need to know.

I live in two different realities:

  1. Depression, anxiety, sadness, irritability, anger, swollen eyes, exhaustion, migraines, aches, and pains. Nothing is worse than the sound of my alarm. I dread the thoughts of simply existing. I lack motivation. What is the point in all of this? Why do I stretch myself so thin all of the time? Why do I try so hard and care so much? We are all going to die anyway.
  2. My passions overwhelm me and I have too many things I want to get done. I am ready to start my day with a shower and an iced latte. The weather is beautiful and I want to sit outside, feel the sunshine, and listen to the birds sing. I feel my depression awakening, but I’m able to put her back to sleep. I put my anxiety back to bed as well. I’m able to overcome my negative emotions and everything is okay. I am going to change the world for the better.

To those who don’t struggle with mental illness, I may seem like a manic mess. To those who can relate, they know that this is a normal part of life. To outsiders unaware of my internal struggle, they would never assume anything was wrong. I seem like a ‘normal’ person. Some days, I even feel sort of normal.

My veins no longer feel like they are going to explode from the accumulation of unsaid words. Self-care is important, necessary even. Writing is self-care for me. I am still learning to love and respect myself.

Time. Everything takes time.

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#14

Sadness flows through my veins-
to what pleasure do I owe this pain?
Up and down my breathing goes
Sometimes gasping for air
Fleeing from what I don’t want to know
Eyes glazed into a stare
My highs are high, my lows are low

Demons to Fight

There are too many emotions. What to say? What is most important? What makes the most sense? What can people relate to? Right now, I do not care.

I always feel like I am not good enough, whether it be a lot or a little. Always, I fall short. I have an issue with people criticizing me without reason or warning. I do not understand those who are so ill mannered and mean to others; it seems these people are always ahead in the game. I refuse to lower myself to someone I am not just to succeed. My depression is a constant ache, my obsessive compulsive thoughts only making that pain worse. Anxiety? Let me worry about my depression and OCD. Bills? Fuck, everything is late. I am never good enough because I refuse to sacrifice who I am to get ahead. When will I be enough? Never? Okay, I will learn to cope. My immune system seems to be working against me, as if everything else was not enough. Fibromyalgia, which my doctor suspects I have, sends pain through my body. Is it in my mind? Maybe. The pain is still just as real. My bones pop when I move, constantly readjusting from the pressure of life. My body is weak and tired, and my mind the same. Every day, I wake up and act as though I am fine. I am going to have a good day. I am not depressed, nor anxious. It is absurd that I am thought to have Fibromyalgia.. I am too young, too healthy. Reality sets in before I even remove my head from my pillow. I am not okay, and it hurts to admit that. I am flawed in a way that most people can not understand. I am flawed in a way that society does not accept. My depression, anxiety, OCD, and whatever the hell else is wrong does not care that my disabilities are seen as miniscule. Depressed? Well, just get up and do something; it will go away. Anxious? Why do you worry about everything? Think about something else; get out and do something and it will go away. OCD? You must be crazy, just stop. You are having a panic attack? Just calm down and come into work and get your mind off of things. You are on medication? I do not believe that helps. Have you tried yoga? I just can not believe depression and anxiety are actually caused my a chemical imbalance; the medication you are on surely is not helping.

On a good day, I am still struggling. On a bad day, it is all I can do to appear ‘normal.’ On a ‘normal’ day, my thoughts still consume me. Mental disorders are real, and those who discredit them are monsters. I do not seek sympathy, but I do seek understanding.

I say that I am okay, because in MY reality, I am. A good day for me may be equivalent to one of the worst days of your life.

Tomorrow, I will wake up the same as I did today: worried, anxious, sad, mad, lazy, avoid-ant, antisocial, introverted, eccentric, excited, achy, tired.. This is who I am, and I fear, who I will always be.

I will not apologize for the cards I have been dealt. Nor should you judge others from being a different card than you are. We are all part of the same deck; we are all important and unique. We do not have to understand one another, but we do need to accept that life has given us all different demons to fight.