I'm fighting a battle at the moment. Those of you who follow me on Twitter probably see all the signs of this day by day. Those of you who only follow/read Fanbloomingtastic might think I've dropped off the side of the planet (Seattle was close...) but hopefully you might have seen my photos and blogette posts from BurlyCon popping up from time to time on the sister blog Absobloominglutely.
But it's taking all my effort to type this, here, right now.
I know I probably talk too much about my cyclothymia, social anxiety etc....indulge me, I passionately believe that mental health and mental illnesses should be talked about out in the open. I think it's crazy (bad word use) that in this day and age, talking about depressions and other kinds of mental illness are still considered taboo. If we don't talk openly about how we feel then how can we prepare our kids for the fact that 1 in 4 of them (so possibly them or definitely members of their families and friends) are going to have to deal with some form of mental health issue during their lives? How can we take away the unnecessary additional stress and fear of others finding out or having to hide who we truly are from those who won't understand without being more open about mental health? Aaaaaanyway, that's a different argument/empassioned plea for another day.
Just for now I'm fighting, as I said.
And I'm finding rather interesting and intriguing that I'm fighting.
For a while now I've been spotting all the signs that I'm on the steep descent into the bottom of my cyclothymic cycle. I'm heading towards rock bottom. Now the good news about this is that even if when I can't remember this when I'm in the pit, when the dark cloud fully descends.....it does all mean that I'm going to be heading back upwards to 'normality' sometime in the future......and did you see that just there, I was being flipping positive. Those of you who've known me for a long time might be just as surprised as I am to see that happening.
How long ago was it, 4 years (one of the MAJOR problems with cyclothymia is I forget so so so many things and my sense of timescale and when things happened, if I can remember them at all is hopeless....it's majorly annoying (though they cope with it so well) to Mr Devyne and the kids, sorry I'm rambling, this too is another linked condition.....I can't stay focused, I ramble, I go off on tangents.....well not today, or at least not too much hopefully).
Where was I? Oh yeah, 4+ years ago I'd sink into the depths and not fight back. I think I've explained many times on here how I became a practical recluse, a shut in. The school bus picked the kids up from outside our door. The Tesco van brought food and household shopping to the door that I'd ordered online. I had no reason to leave the house. I had no fight at all. The depths of the depression would come and I'd let it come because what was the point of fighting it.
Well, weirdly and surprisingly that seems to be changing this time. I know I'm going, I can feel it. The urge to not be here (I have had one moment of wanting to end it all, but that was massively fleeting, and something positive inside me told me how badly this would affect Melchett (yes, I know others would be upset too, but my primal gut instinct shouted "what about Melchett, how would she cope?!!" at me). Suicidal thoughts used to last much longer in years gone by, I'd plan intricately how I'd do it and plan the scene over and over. There was no room for rational thought in my head at this time, the only thoughts there were how much better off everyone would be without me. It was selfish and not selfish at the same time, because as I say, there was no rationality in my thinking), the urge to not be here keeps coming in waves. There is a tremendous urge to destroy things - I've broken so much crockery in the past.....the urge is here a lot recently, AND YET, I haven't broken anything. My other usual destruction satisfier in the past has been deleting all my online presences. Deleting blog posts, deleting tweets and FB statuses. Taking photos offline. leaving profile black and empty. Even though the want has been there to do that, I haven't this time.
Even going silent......I know now is a very bad time to get into arguments, and I can't say I'm an angel and have stopped myself from entering into none of these, but so far (Fingers crossed) I've spotted what I was doing, and managed to pull myself back from becoming something I can then beat myself up about later for being a nasty person.
My pyschotherapist told me once that my go-to "I'm a nasty person" even though I totally believe this many a time, was just a crutch. When things go wrong, and I attack, or worse I attack so that I can become a victim....for years "I'm a nasty person" was my knee-jerk reaction.
Well, and again I say fingers crossed, so far I'm spotting what I'm doing entering into arguments and I'm pulling back and fully out of them. And fingers crossed I haven't spotted myself starting any arguments yet. Though I could be wrong.
But I am currently surprising myself. The urge is massive to go offline for a few weeks, a month, a few months, to shut down, find a darkened corner and stop coping.......but without being conscious of it most of the time, my head isn't letting the voices of hate towards myself win. My head is getting me up (most of the time) and convincing me I want to do things with my day. So even though I've been hanging back from posting on this blog recently, my head's been nagging me......"go on, you want to blog, you always feel better when you've blogged". And suddenly I'm making Halloween decorations or a costume for Goth Child, and I'm getting slightly excited about making stuff again.
AND LAST WEEK, I wanted cake. And I tweeted I wanted cake. And I flipping well went and got cake! I wouldn't have done that 4+ years ago. I'd have justed wanted cake and then told myself that I was incapable of going out and getting some..........and my bestest friend from the UK Maretta will tell you the numerous times as I was finding my feet again I would be floored by driving all around Shropshire looking for places to stop and get cake, only for my head to convince me that I couldn't park in that tiny car park (parking lot), or that I'd find the noise and numbers of people in that supermarket too much to cope with....and I'd return home feeling a total failure at my inability to do one simple task.
AND DO YOU KNOW WHAT'S MORE......not only did I tweet I wanted and was going to get cake.......I found my fingers tweeting this:
Do you see that? "I'm going to celebrate the fact that 4 years ago I wouldn't leave the house to get cake".
I'm actually (even though it wasn't consciously) able to see where I am and that this isn't the end of the world. I'm actually hanging on to a teeny tiny bit of perspective!
Trust me, this might seem like a nothingness to you if you haven't experienced depression of any kind (and that's cool, why would you think any different?) but this is MAJOR in my life. Even though I'm struggling to keep my head above water, I've retained a little bit of rational thinking and a little bit of perspective.
Basically, there is hope.
So, I'm going to try and keep on fighting. If I go missing for a few days (I mean online......I'm not planning to do a bunk to some log cabin in the mountains as wonderfully perfect that sounds right now......btw New England, megally jealous of your snow and power cuts at the moment, I know I'm warped but they sound like heaven to me) then don't worry it probably just means that I'm concentrating on not letting the voices win, or that I've given in for the day or so and am going to hide under a duvet and watch Miss Marple or Jeeves and Wooster boxsets (doesn't help that I'm massively homesick too at the moment, though this could be being caused by the depression).
But as previous instances have proved and this slightly better holding onto rationality and perspective - I'll be back. And the sun will always come out, even if it takes a while.
I apologise for the ramblings. You guys are the greatest putting up with me :)