Finding hope

I need to somehow drag myself out of this deep hole. I just have to remember that “recovery is not only possible, but inevitable”.

This woman inspires me:

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Torn

TRIGGER WARNING: SELF HARM, SUICIDAL THOUGHTS AND IDEATION

I am mixed. I am feeling like my brain and all these racing thoughts are not in sync with my body. My mental and physical health are both in shambles and university hasn’t started yet.

I won’t lie to you, I am afraid. I am anxious because my final year is going to be a stressful year. There’s no way in which I can sugarcoat it. It will be stressful. At the moment, the stress I’ve been exposed to was moving to a new house and new country. It would be a bit overwhelming for anybody, but especially so for a bipolar fighter.

Is it fair? It isn’t. I hate mixed episodes, I hate them with all of my being. I hate the urges to self harm only to feel something real. For me, self harming works like an anchor. When my mind is not in sync with my body, pain is something I can feel, pain is there and it’s real. The cuts are there and they are real, the bruises are there and, again, they are real.

The good thing is that I haven’t given in to these urges. My alternative is drawing on my skin with a red Sharpie marker. I do it to trick my brain into thinking that the process of anchoring has been completed. And it works for me.

Another thing that is totally unbearable when it comes to mixed episodes is having racing thoughts, and racing dark thoughts. You are exhausted, but you have the energy to harm yourself. You are exhausted, but you can be impulsive and overdose on a whim. There is no rhyme and no reason, there are only the impulses, the racing thoughts, the despair.

It’s the most dangerous state for a bipolar, and I am there again. My appointment today was cancelled because the GP had an emergency. I am supposed to see the doctor tomorrow morning.

Please keep your fingers crossed for me. I hope to be able to go through the night, make it for my appointment in the morning, getting my medication adjusted (again), and getting the help I need. I am in a dark place. I need all the light I can gather!

 

How do I manage?

I had a bad night last night. At least this time I know the triggers. To put you in theme, I am an architecture student, in my final year of study, I need a job, and I have bipolar disorder.

Yesterday I received my timetable for this academic year and as soon as I’ve seen that I am only going to have 2 days off my legs turned to jelly. How am I supposed to keep this strict routine I need in order to function? How am I supposed to combine work and study? How am I supposed to keep my balance on such a thin wire?

The good thing is that I have the mental health support team who can help me when it comes to deferrals and accommodations, even so, being given how unpredictable this illness can be, nobody can guarantee how I am going to feel tomorrow or in a couple of weeks. Am I going to have more depressive episodes? Am I at risk of going into full blown mania because of stress and pressure? Only time will tell.

Oh well, oh well, I am still hoping for the best!

 

The soul of the party…or not at the party

I haven’t been here for a while. In fact, I’ve been here reading your posts, but I did not feel like writing. I guess “riding the tiger” took all of my energy. I am constantly trying to find the “in between”, balance. The funny thing is, when I do find it (it doesn’t happen very often) I am not happy with it. I am intense. I will always be intense. Lack of intensity is terrifying me.

I guess I will continue to be the life and soul of the party and then disappear for a while. My friends will understand, I hope they will.

In other news, I am thinking to open an Etsy store and sell my paintings. I am also thinking to donate some of the money to research regarding mental disorders or different non profit organisations. And then this question comes to mind: “Is what I do good enough? Would anybody buy it?” I guess this is a common trait in creative people, always second guessing and judging their own work, being their harshest critic.

I hope to find my courage and just do it. I will leave here a detail of an untitled painting, acrylic on canvass. I think it suits my actual mood. Blue, green and “in between”. DSC_0284-edit-blog

Inspired

What inspires you? For me, visiting new places, especially art museums and art galleries, coffee places, bookstores, historical buildings, forests, fields, lakes…I got a bit carried away here, excuse moi!

Today I visited a fantastic museum dedicated to the work of people with mental disorders. It was a great experience. As an art lover, creative individual and also having a mental disorder, the place was on my list for a long time. Today I felt well enough and capable enough to travel there. I enjoyed every bit of work. I found it special because it spoke to me on so many levels. I could absorb the energy, expression and passion in each one of the pieces.

If you find yourselves in Germany, maybe put this little museum on your list. I think you will enjoy.

When I see art, I want to make art. I used some of my digital sketches as well as one ink drawing I enjoyed so much creating. I put them together in this little piece I call “Complicated Mind”. All rights reserved, all wrongs reserved.

Let me know what you think 🙂

complicated-mind-pnweb

Climbing

I’m in here. I am struggling to climb the high walls Depression puts around me. She puts walls around me and around my soul. Thick, masonry and concrete walls. No windows. No sunshine coming in. Just me and the beat of my heart.

The fire in my soul is still burning, still alive. I am not completely in the dark. Sometimes the 1000 abusive voices want to tell me that my soul has died, thus I have died, or I should die, but I can feel that fire, that warmth, that rhythm. I am alive. I am still alive.

I am touching the surface of the walls in the dark. Some of bricks are chipped. Maybe the prisoner before tried to smash the walls, the same way I tried so many times. But wait…this is my cell, I think Depression puts each one of her prisoners in different cells. Yes! This is how I remember it is, she keeps us isolated so she can control us better.

Does that mean that the chipped and crumbled bricks are the fruit of my struggle to demolish this prison? I think that’s the only explanation.

I can use them! As a “ladder”. A climbing wall. I can get out of this. I’m going to grip the little niches in the bricks. I am going to dig my fingernails into them and make an effort to drag myself out of this hole. I am going to do it until my fingers and hands get bloody. I am going to make it, I am going to make it!

Coming out of the closet

I did it. I wrote about my fight with bipolar disorder and my experience on my social media. The kindness of people overwhelmed the few mean and ignorant messages. I’ve been feeling lighter and free ever since.

I am back in my depressive mood, but it’s not so bad. The dark thoughts are not here. They left me since I started the mood stabilizer medication. I am grateful for that.

I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Thank you, for keeping me going!

Looking back

Sleepless nights are great for thinking and meditation and I want to think that I am able to control my racing thoughts sometimes. Last night was one of these nights. I’ve been able to untangle some thoughts from the concentrated cluster.

I was thinking about how much I’ve been through this year. I have two months left until I return home. I am hoping to make the most of them. I have mixed feelings about this year, and I think this is only natural. It’s been a great year overall, but I feel like I could have done more if I wouldn’t have had to struggle with my emotional problems.

This year is going to stay in my memory as both a blessing and a curse. I am grateful for the wonderful experiences, the personal growth this experience has brought, the improvement of my skills. I am especially grateful for the beautiful people I have met.

And, I guess I am grateful that I got a diagnosis as well. It’s been really hard to find a doctor, there were the language barriers, the different systems. Don’t get me wrong, I am not grateful for my disorder, but I am grateful that I was able to get the treatment and support I needed. Knowledge is power and now that I know what’s going on, I can tackle this. I can find my coping strategies, I can understand more of what’s going on inside my quirky brain.

The bottom line would be that, no matter what, I want to look back to this year as being a great experience. Yes, there have been difficulties, yes, I’ve been struggling, but I am here now. I am alive. This is a huge achievement :).

For all the people struggling out there: you are awesome, powerful and great! Don’t give up! It’s going to get better. It’s not a linear process, but you can learn to ride the waves. Much love! ❤

It’s been a while

Since I last had the “patience” and mood to write something. I actually don’t have it right now. I am still in this mixed state, but I am trying hard to keep myself functioning. I am re-learning how to be kind to myself. It is really hard on days like these, when the main feeling is exhaustion and existential despair.

I am hopeful, though. I feel like I am able to cut through all the layers of lethargy and self-loathing. It’s not easy…but I do have a really sharp sword. I am meaner than my demons. 

It’s been a long day

And this day is coming after a lot of other long days…Since my mood went haywire in the last couple of weeks, the appointment I had today felt like relief. I know where I am standing. I know that there is not only my “creative mind trying to find connections.” I know where I am. I am on the right path. 🙂