World Mental Health Day

Today is world mental health day. One year ago I made a post called “Society Told Me.” Today, that post still rings true and still hits close to home. Today I want to share that post again but change it up a little bit to share how I have changed in the past 365 days. I hope you enjoy.


This year, World Mental Health Day has once again exploded on Twitter. My friends, acquaintances, and social media influencers near or far remarking on their mental health struggles. Each time I see a tweet, or a photo, or a comment about any mental illness it makes me smile knowing there are so many people of all shapes, sizes, and colors from all corners of the Earth that struggle with the same issues that I do. I admire each and every one of you for speaking out about the struggles you face on a day to day basis, despite society constantly dehumanizing us for having them.

Mental illnesses have always been something I struggled with. Although when I first started struggling I didn’t know they were called mental illnesses and I merely thought I was some emo freak who wanted to die for attention, because that’s what society told me.

I can remember the first time I ever thought about killing myself in seventh grade and how I thought I would never be happy. I remember thinking that I belonged in an insane asylum which is why it showed up in every single one of my seventh-grade art projects. I laughed it off but secretly thought I belonged in one, because that’s what society told me.

I can remember the first night I self-harmed and how I had to cover my arms and legs and stomach at all costs in fear of someone calling me out for being a freak and ostracizing me, because that’s what society told them to do.

I can remember defending one of my friends for cutting and saying she was just like us. Each of them told me I was “as crazy as her” for saying something like that, and they were afraid she would kill herself because of the cutting, because that’s what society told them, that everyone who cuts is emo and will kill themselves.

I can remember when I last had a self-harm relapse. 306 days ago. I can remember thinking that I would never be clean again and that I would hurt myself forever. Because that’s what society told me.

I can remember being happy. How everyone said, “you’re smiling, you aren’t depressed.” people who have depression aren’t happy. They don’t smile. That’s what society told them.

But guess what. Depression doesn’t have a face. You can smile with friends during the day and cry yourself to sleep at night. I will say it again: Depression does not have a face. Mental illness does not have a face.

Here I am, 8 years after I wanted to kill myself for the first time. I’ll admit, I still do sometimes… yes even now. The feeling sometimes passes quicker than others, but I know it won’t make everything better.

Today I want society to piss off. Mental illnesses are normal. 1 in 4 people have them. Mental illnesses have no face, people who live with mental illnesses can function in everyday society just like those without. I  want society to stop romanticizing mental illnesses. Depression isn’t cute. Anxiety is not a trend. Suicide is not a good idea, no matter what society tells you.

The last thing anyone wants to hear is that it gets better, but the one thing everyone needs to hear is that you are not alone. I needed to hear that 8 years ago, I needed to hear that last night.

This day exists so that can be visible. We may feel alone often, but we aren’t. If you are struggling, get help, no matter how hard it is for you. I waited 5 years and every day I wish I had gotten it sooner. Get help before it’s too late.

Society has dehumanized people with mental illnesses and this is our day, to show that we are humans and we are just as capable. Everyone fights their own battles, mine just take place inside of me.

Get this… I like being alone

Nov. 21: What is the one thing you wish people better understood about something in your life?

I wouldn’t consider myself an extrovert, but I also wouldn’t consider myself an introvert either. I love spending time with my friends, family, etc. but only to an extent. I have never been one of those people who can spend every day of the week, weekend, summer, etc with their friends. After I use so much of my energy spending time with people, whether it be family or friends, I need a day or more to recuperate and regain my energy.

Not only do I need time to reenergize,  I also hate last minute plans. I am one of those people who definitely has plans for doing nothing and have allotted time in my week for doing so. If I am laying on the couch, watching TV or doing nothing at all and someone asks to hang out with me, I can’t say yes. I always make up some excuse that I have to go somewhere soon and that we should hang out that weekend or what not. It’s not that I don’t want to see that person, it’s just I am emotionally ready enough to leave the house and socialize.

People never seem to understand how I am not always ready to go somewhere and do something. I just really wish people wouldn’t question my need for doing these things and would accept this and simply try to make plans a day or two in advance.

Until tomorrow

Alicia

NaBloPoMo Day 1

Nov 1st Prompt: When you’re having a bad day with your mental health, what do you do to help yourself?

This is actually a funny topic (not funny per say more like ironic) because I’ve actually been having a bad mental health couple of days recently and have done just about everything I know possible to help myself mentally.

Whenever I think of having a bad mental day, the only thing I want to do is curl up in a ball and sleep all day. That’s nice to do every once in awhile, but when you have bad mental days as often as I do, it’s just not realistic.

The first thing I do is shower, or take a bath. Whenever I have a bad mental day, I typically cannot feel anything. I am basically the embodiment of an emotional void and the only thing that helps is feeling the warmth on my skin as the water cascades down my body. The cool air as I step out of the shower, and the same cold yet soothing feeling as I soothe lotion all over my body.

Once I’m soft and clean, I put on my comfiest pair of pajamas, twist my hair in a bun, and write. I write about my emptiness, I write about how I want to feel, I write about things that make me feel, anything. I listen to classical music to keep me calm and get my creative juices flowing.

While I write, I prepare some tea (Earl Grey is my personal fave). While my body still can’t feel emotion, the scalding tea reminds me that I do in fact, exist, and I’m alive. Just simply holding the mug, and letting the heat radiate onto my fingers, reminds me to feel.

I sometimes do other things like bake, work out, etc, but what I mentioned above is the gist of what I do most often. See you tomorrow

Alicia

P.S. For everyone who wants to blog along… Here are the prompts for the week

Nov 1: When you’re having a bad day with your mental health, what do you do to help yourself?

Nov. 2: When was the last time you did something brave? What happened?

Nov. 3: If you could be completely honest with no regrets, what would you say and to whom?

Nov. 4: Which fall shows should totally be canceled already?

Nov 5: Free Write

Nov 6: Free Write

Society Told Me

Yesterday was World Mental Health Day. It has exploded on twitter and it makes me smile to know that there are so many people in this world who struggle with the same issues that I do. It also makes me smile knowing that there are so many people speaking out about their illnesses despite society constantly dehumanizing us for having them.

Mental illnesses have always been something I struggled with. Although when I first started struggling I didn’t know they were called mental illnesses and I merely thought I was some emo freak who wanted to die for attention, because that’s what society told me.

I can remember the first time I ever thought about killing myself in seventh grade and how I thought  would never be happy. I remember thinking that I belonged in an insane asylum which is why it showed up in every single one of my seventh grade art projects. I laughed it off but secretly thought I belonged in one, because that’s what society told me. I can remember the first night I self-harmed and how I had to cover my arms and legs and stomach at all costs in fear of someone calling me out for being a freak and ostracizing me, because that’s what society told them to do. I can remember defending one of my friends for cutting and saying she was just like us. Each of them told me I was “as crazy as her” for saying something like that, and they were afraid she would kill herself because of the cutting, because that’s what society told them, that everyone who cuts is emo and will kill themselves.

Here I am, 7 years after I wanted to kill myself for the first time. I still do sometimes but I begin to realize that this feeling will pass and it won’t make anything better. I can remember the last time I ever self-harmed, a little bit over a year ago. I remember how happy I was when I was one-year self-harm free and how much I cried on that day because I never thought I would live to see that day.

Today I want society to piss off. Mental illnesses are normal. 1 in 4 people have them. The stigma behind mental illnesses needs to stop. If I post this anywhere, ever, I guarantee most people will not even believe this is something I struggle from, because unlike what society tells you, people who live with mental illnesses can function in everyday society just like those without.

The last thing anyone wants to hear is that it gets better, but the one thing everyone needs to hear is that you are not alone. I needed to hear that 7 seven years ago, I needed to hear that last night. World Mental Health Day exists for people who suffer from mental illnesses to know they are not alone. We may feel like it so often, but we aren’t. This day also exists so that we can end this stigma that accompanies mental illnesses. This stigma is the reason I waited 5 years to get help, the reason so many other wait that long or don’t get help at all. Society has dehumanized people with mental illnesses and this is our day, to show that we are humans and we are just as capable. Everyone fights their own battles, mine just take place inside of me.

Mental Illness Awareness Week

Hi friends, this week was mental illness awareness week. Basically, having mental illnesses suck but we need to understand that 1 in 4 people struggle with them and that typically, these people can function in society just like people without.

I always struggled with my mental illnesses since I was in middle school. Now, I am finally coming to terms with them and myself. It’s very unfortunate that I had to struggle with mental illnesses alone for such a long time. I do not want any of you, or anyone ever to have to go through something like this alone.

Recently, I started following the instagram @wearyourlabel which is basically a clothing store that tells you it’s okay to not be okay. This instagram sells shirts with slogans such as “self care isn’t selfish,” “you are enough,” and “anxious but courageous.” I really like all of them and in order to prevent impulse buying each of them, I am holding off until I can narrow down until there is only one I am absolutely in love with.

After I started following wear your label, another instagram account @buddyproject. Intrigued as to what the ‘buddy project’ was all about, I followed them back and took a look at their website. Basically the buddy project is a project started by Gabby Frost. Gabby’s mission was to pair people as buddies while raising awareness for mental illnesses.

I really think that the buddy project is a great organization and kudos to Gabby for thinking about it. It’s very easy to sign up for a buddy. All you have to do is share you name, twitter handle, email, and share what a few interests are and bam! You’re signed up. I’m not sure how long it will take to get my buddy, but when I do find out, I’ll be sure to let you all know. I also recommend everyone suffering from mental illnesses or those wanting to be more aware of mental health in general, to take a look at either wear your label or buddy project.

Have a great weekend and Always Remember to be Aware of Mental Illnesses. I didn’t write 2 essays and three speeches about them in college for nothing

Alicia

kinda sad, kinda empty

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*Let’s get this shitshow started* It’s been a while since I’ve posted. It’s been a while since I’ve even sat at my computer and written. It’s been a while since I’ve done anything remotely productive really.

There have been so many times in the past month to month and a half where I’ve opened up WordPress  and wanted to write, where I tried to write. I even started a post in my drafts a week or two ago, and just wasn’t motivated to finish it. Although I haven’t really been motivated to do much of anything recently, it’s whatever.

I stopped going to work almost entirely. In the last month that I was working I think I went 5 days. I was sick at first and then I was just encapsulated by my bed. I’ve been sleeping day in and day out. The left side of my face is littered with blemishes due to it spending so much time with my pillow. I sleep so much yet the bags under my eyes are more prominent than ever.  And if I wasn’t sleeping, I was moping and laying in bed, only emerging from my fortress to use the bathroom. Half the time I don’t know what day it is, despite it being displayed every time I tap the home button on my iPhone.

I’m not eating, drinking, exercising, I’m not doing anything. I’ve lost 8 pounds in the last month.

I’m depressed. I’m not sure why, but I am. Being at home makes me depressed. I have to be home for at least the next 4 months too. And to be completely and utterly honest with all of you, I don’t want to be depressed for the next 4 months.

It’s funny, at least I think it’s funny. I was sad and empty and depressed for years. It’s like I was trapped. I was hollow. It was as if every second of my life more of my insides were widdled away, until there was nothing left to hollow out.

Then I left my small Chicago suburb for San Diego and it was as if I had never been sad in my entire life. A weight, a forlorn weight, had been lifted off my shoulders and I was free. I was happy, I smiled. I smiled real smiles. I laughed real laughs.  I was truly happy. I don’t smile at home. At least not real smiles. I plaster on the occasional fake smile every once in a while so people don’t think I’m as desolate as I really am. The only things I laugh at now are pointless vines my sister shows me. And I am definitely not happy. I have been home for only 3 months and in those 3 months all of my happiness has diminished and it was like I had never gone to California in the first place.

My hair is brown. I dyed it the other day. I thought that would make me at least a little happy. It didn’t.

I haven’t washed my hair since we dyed it and the only reason I showered then was because I had to rinse the excess dye out. The shirt I’m wearing is dirty. I only put it on today so it looked like I showered and put on clothes. It has a stain on it from the last time I wore it(tea I think) and it has a stain I got on it from eating some leftover pasta at my 10:00 dinner tonight. My face is clean. It’s only clean because I found a face mask and wanted to try it. The mask said to apply to clean skin.

One of my eyebrows is tweezed. The other, I lost any spur to do it, so I didn’t. I haven’t worn a bra in days and I live in sweatpants now.

I’m not sure what this post is about. I really don’t. I don’t want pity. I don’t know what I want. It’s sort of just a life update post, a pretty pathetic one at that.

It’s 1:30 in the morning right now so I’m feeling kinda emo, but I just want to feel things. I don’t want this hollow feeling coursing through my body every second of the day. I want to be able to feel. I want to feel joy, rage, repugnance, dismay hell even melancholy.I just want to feel something, anything. Because right now this hollow pit  has encapsulated my entire being and is dragging me to places I don’t want to be dragged.

I just think I miss being happy, being able to feel. But until I get those abilities back, you can catch me laying in bed in week old sweatpants, unkempt hair, with my Shrek pillow pet.

Until next time
Alicia

She

The feeling is one of an indescribable measure. How can you describe something where you feel so much but so little at the same time?

She washes over me a like a wave, engulfing me like a flame, bringing me down with her into that dark abyss. I can’t go back I tell her, I’ve come so far from where I once was. She doesn’t listen to me, she never does. I can never escape her, no matter how hard I try. She will always continue her chase. I try to run away but she takes my hand and drags me back down, farther back, deeper than I had ever been before.

I’m taking one step forward and five steps back. As I put on my mask of happiness for the day to cover the empty feeling writhing inside my very core, it’s back to my daily ritual. Masking my sorrow with a mask that looks almost as fake as it feels.

We all carry on with our days. People pass me by and I can’t help but wonder if they don masks too. What are they hiding? I can’t tell if I have mastered the art of hiding behind this pasted on mask or if no one cares enough to see that I’m falling apart behind it.

It’s obviously the latter she tells me. As the razor glides across my skin I look at myself and all I see is her. How did I get to this point? How did I let her envelop my very being, my entire self?

It has been years of struggle. Of letting her take me to rock bottom. This is the better life she assured me. I’m the only one who cares about you, she reiterates for the hundredth night in a row. As she caresses me every night in bed as I cry to her and tell her of my struggle, she is the only one who listens to me. She understands me, the only one who understands me. At a certain point, I start to agree with her. Maybe she’s right. Maybe she’s the only one who cares for me, understands me, loves me.

But how could that be? People say they love me. She tells me they are lying. That they feel bad for me. That she is the only one who truly cares. Day after day, I debate with what is right. Do I let her continue to love and cherish me, or do I try to get rid of her? How can I get rid of something that seems so natural, so needed. Maybe she needs me and I need her. That’s what she tells me anyway. That the two of us were went to be. And maybe she’s right.

Years of me trying to take control. Trying to loosen the grip she has on my life. Loosen the grip she has held for years. It works sometimes. Sometimes I can pry her long slender fingers from my arm and get free for a period of time. But, no matter what  I do, she always finds a way. She weasels her way back into my life. She creeps up on me when I least expect it. And she seizes me again. After I writhe in pain at her touch for a while, it becomes the norm again. She has done it again, gotten me under her spell, and despite my protests and cries for help, no one can hear me and she has total and complete control over me and my entire being.

Until next time,
Alicia

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