A Rant A Day Keeps the Psychiatrist Away

Must. Vent.

Ass. Hurts. From. Sitting. But. Must. Belt. Out. This. Post.

My last post consisted of my complaining about something or other, a career or whatever, abandoning my people, becoming a no-good-foul-traitor, but all of those worries have been eradicated. I will be pursuing another degree in physics while simultaneously keeping my connections to the mental health community by remaining employed as a peer counselor, participating in trainings, and eventually getting involved with NAMI: In Your Own Voice. So, all that complaining I did in the last post? Yeah, ignore that, I figured it out.

This post is a different kind of complaining. This post is more . . . hmm, what’s the word?

Seriously, what’s the word? How about you read the post and then tell me in the comments a word that sums all this shit up.

It’s been . . . five months? Six months off medication? I’m not exactly sure how long it’s been. I haven’t heard any variation of voices since the night I tried to kill myself (a post about that wonderful experience here) and my mood has been relatively–relatively–stable.

I feel like I need to re-customize this blog. The fact that the titles of the post don’t show up on the homepage literally makes me want to kick a bird.

I would never do that, I love animals.

I do this with my cat on the daily, and 99% of the time she fucking hates it

And this is the type of energy I’ve had since I quit those godawful medications. A warning to anyone attempting the Trintellix route: BE CAREFUL. It’s very understudied, still very new in terms of psychiatric medications go, and it fucked me up when I got off of it. My blood would have been on that companies’ hands.

I did have a bit of a breakdown yesterday, the first major one in five months, and that’s what’s prompting me to write this post. Just when you think you’re through the thickest part of the forest, you turn west and an abundance of pine trees cover your path in thicket.

While writing a different post for a different blog, I recounted my childhood in relation to school, specifically math classes. And while writing I got this overwhelming sensation, this bombardment of pain, a deep pain, a subconscious pain, one my conscious mind couldn’t comprehend. I couldn’t type anymore, the words were so muddied it felt like every sentence sounded like jumbled shit.

I couldn’t identify any other emotion besides pain. I couldn’t recount what kind of pain it was. I was sad, hurt, frustrated, confused–it felt like I was one of those Russian dolls that have smaller dolls hidden inside of it, and one of the smaller dolls was screaming in agony while simultaneously being burned alive, raped, and verbally accosted.

I’m sorry for that picture, but that’s the depth of the pain.

School is generally shit for most people. Very rarely have I met a person who said: “I liked everything about every year of my school and I don’t have one embarrassing or bad memory related to it”. If you are one of those people, comment or email me, because I want to hear your story.

But school wasn’t that horrible for me. I didn’t talk, suffered through Selective Mutism for a while, then paralyzing anxiety. I had trouble making friends, I was shit in math, and I was an outcast. No one really bullied me because I was tall, athletic, and hung out with kids who brought tasers and drugs to school. Home life was hard: surrounded by domestic violence, drugs, alcohol, emotional torment. And while I recognize all of that as a sort of systematic trauma, I thought for sure my awareness of it would cut down on the effect it has on me. Apparently I was wrong.

There must be some memory–or memories–of which I’ve either repressed or I just ignore and refuse to explore because there is an inner child, an inner part of me, that is consistently crying, screaming, cowering. It never stops. And sometimes there’s a “trigger” that ignites this part of me, like writing about my childhood.

A therapist I had at the Outpatient group I attended insisted I get in touch with my inner child but the closer I got to speaking with her the more distant and dissociated I became. That was another catalyst for that wonderful get-in-the-tub-and-kill-yourself incident you can read about in the above linked post.

Another trigger for me is when teachers say “Alright, we’re going to do an activity today” or “We’ll do something fun today”. The word “activity” alone sparks my fight and flight response whether it’s at a team meeting at work or a class or a workshop or a training. Or, when people say “you’re so quiet.” Even when they mean it in a good way.

Speaking of training, I have a three hour one on Wednesday of which has been really fucking with my head. I don’t do well around large groups of people and if I’m forced to do a role play in front of even five people I will spontaneously combust. I will.

I’m scared to touch my inner child with a ten foot pole because it seems like a volatile, unstable, nuclear ball of energy. I know I need to do it in order to properly heal, but I haven’t found anyone who can help me through that process yet. The last therapist I had who I paid for not only discounted my job and my skills, but insisted I get a second job even through I was curling on her couch crying my eyes out every session. I could barely hold my head up, and she wanted me to push myself harder.

I’m done with those kind of people in my life. Sometimes it’s not about pushing through the hard stuff, sometimes it’s about holding the hard stuff.

It feels good to post on here again, a real post. Not a whiny, woe-as-me post, but a thoughtful, reflective rant.

The word to sum up this post: Fuck.

Why I Let Go Of Labels

Has a label ever really done anything but sit as ink on a piece of paper?

Another good reason: “Scientists SURPRISED to find no two neurons are genetically a like”. 

Really? That was a surprise to you? Dude. IQ of 35 in these researchers.

It’s funny how research that contradicts the current belief that the same type of treatment for the same type of “psychiatric disorders” makes sense doesn’t ever hold weight against the industry. And it’s kind of funny that the researchers for the pharmaceutical companies with shitty, half-assed studies that literally reveal nothing and yet have more weight than the study above.

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Source: Google Images

I’m kidding, this shit isn’t funny, it’s just sad.

In high school I was obsessed with labels. I wanted one. I wanted one so people would believe me when I said I was having trouble–otherwise, no one seemed to care.

I wasn’t good with people, I couldn’t stand in front of the class without fainting, I was super sensitive (a teacher once told me not to put a pencil tip close to my eye and I started bawling because I felt so degraded and stupid), I couldn’t go to school unless I got up at 4 a.m to prepare for the day. I needed three hours, not for hair and make up or whatever, but because I knew the anxiety would hit. Then I’d meet up with a friend, smoke some weed, head to class, and bullshit my way through the day. I’d smoke again at break, then lunch, then after school.

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Source: Google Images

I found something called social anxiety disorder and resonated with it like I’ve never resonated with something in my life. I thought having that would solve my life. I’d see more therapists, correctly this time, things would be better.

Did that. Didn’t work. I was 14 and started thinking maybe this wasn’t the problem. Something else had to be wrong with me.

GAD? I was always anxious, after all. PTSD? I’d been through some shit. Dissociative disorders? I was blacking out, you know, and I couldn’t really remember my childhood. Avoidant Personality? I did skip classes to avoid the mind-splitting anxiety. Anti-social personality disorder? Well, I did have vicious thoughts and I didn’t really give a fuck. Selective Mutism? I never did grow out of my shyness and I always froze up when people talked to me. Higher on the Autism spectrum? Well, I did love routine, I struggled understanding social customs, I stayed in my own world . . .  Agoraphobia? Well, I never went outside of my room, I was too nervous. Paranoia? People were always talking about me and working against me, they all hated me. Or was that just low self esteem? No, it wasn’t, it couldn’t be something that simple. Bipolar? My moods were fucking whacked. Schizoid personality? I rarely showed real emotion and, again, I didn’t give a fuck. But wait, wouldn’t that contradict the bipolar? Hmm, well I did have very active fantasy worlds, I remembered a few hallucinations as a kid and I was totally paranoid . . . oh no: I was totally schizophrenic. Totally.

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Or, I was all of that, and one fucked up teenager.

I was terrified. I was going to go crazy. I had always been a weird kid, I was always being sent into conferences and therapists and teachers were always worried and I brought alcohol to school in middle school and someone snitched on me and I threatened to kill them and they were scared of me until senior year of high school and I knew a lot of bangers and people brought tazers to school and . . . and . . .

And my terror was justified. Because social anxiety was brought up. PTSD.Autistic traits” (Jesus Christ), Agoraphobia. Depression. GAD. Schizotypal. Prodromal Schizophrenia. Schizo this, schizo that, how many words can you put schizo in front of before it loses its luster?

And now, dissociation.

I gave up labels when I was 16 because they all overlap vaguely and the words never gave me the justification I was seeking. I wasn’t really seeking justification anyway. I was seeking help. Hopefulness and understanding. I didn’t really get any of that.

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Hanratty’s asylum

Dissociation isn’t really a label, but it has been brought up again because of what I’ve noticed in myself. The whole, you know, not remembering anything in my childhood. The whole, you know, blacking out and walking into intersections. The whole, you know, going in and out of these states, these states that were thought for a long while to be a precursor to psychosis, where I’m met with a challenge, a thought, stress, flashbacks, e.t.c and suddenly I’m interacting with Thoth, the Egyptian God, which is who I’ve actually spent this last two weeks with, he gave me a message to decode, or battling the impostor in my classmates who has left her body and entered mine, or I’d quit a job at an amusement park because the bosses are also impostors, planning to get me locked up in prison . . .

And what confused everyone was that you wouldn’t know it if you looked at me. And what confused people in the past was that the voices I did hear weren’t causing me impairment and I didn’t hear them every day. I didn’t see things everyday. Was it just stress? Well, I wouldn’t be eating or showering, but I’d look okay too. I’ve babbled before, but I could be focused too. You could have a general conversation with me; I might seem spacey but you’d just blow it off for tiredness or general strangeness. I’m a good trickster, huh?

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hahahahah kill me

There’s been a general back and forth about all this in the world of past psychological services that I don’t talk about because it’s all bullshit.

And my psychologist asks me why I didn’t tell the hospital last October what was really going on. Well . . . I really don’t want to get smacked on a cot and forced drugs, that’s why.  Had I been truthful, I would have lost control and anger would have replaced rationale. They already offered me drugs three times and I was only there for a little over 36 hours.

And when I’m back out of that fog, which could last a few hours, a few days, a few weeks, a month, two, three, whatever, I find I can’t remember what it was that happened before it all. I won’t be able to remember the thought, the stress, the pain, that pushed me to that point.

It’s a protection method, I know this now. After 21 years of bullshit, I get it. What exactly my brain has protected me from the past . . . well, only my brain knows. It must be in a hell of a lot of pain, and have a hell of a lot of empathy to protect me this viciously.

Does that mean I should be labeled with a dissociative disorder now? After all that in the above paragraph? I don’t think so. Keep that shit away from me. Next thing you know there will be a Schizociative Affective Generalized Attenuated Psychosis Post-Traumatic Bipolar Syndrome type IIX and I’ll be the first one labeled it.

I need to know all I needed to know now. It’s all about discovery and healing at this point.

Mmmm Brains.

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I like brains.

I like seeing people’s brains. I like imagining poking people’s brains. I like imagining the second my finger tip touches the outer layer of the cortex, my consciousness gets sucked from my body and enters the space-time continuum surrounded by other floating brains, kind of like that one episode of Futurama, but better because it’s real.

But the main reason I like the brain is because we don’t know half as much as we think we know. I’m convinced our brains, which have named themselves, know things they don’t want us to know–or know things they know we couldn’t handle knowing. Not just about ourselves, but about the universe, the spirit world, particles, biology, consciousness, everything. Think about the layers of protection we have, biologically and strictly mentally. Our body and brain uses every last resource it can to keep us living. Why? Because it’s biologically wired that way? Maybe. But there’s nothing you can say to prove that. And there’s nothing I can say to disprove that.

There’s a new study coming out of a U.S and Japanese research team-up that has compelling evidence the brain duplicates memories upon their formation: one copy for the present, one for the past that gets carried into our future: it’s there for a lifetime. It might not be available to our consciousness for a lifetime, but it’s there.

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In Case You’re A Visual Learner

The hippocampus (short term) and the cortex (long term) are two areas of the brain we know memory is apart of. In mice, this team watched a specific cluster of connected neurons (i.e, a memory) in reaction to shock. To control individual neurons, they used beams of light and could essentially turn memories on and off. Memories were shown to form simultaneously in the hippocampus and the cortex.

These scientists say it may help us understand diseases like dementia. I’m looking at the bigger picture. Essentially, these memories are being “duplicated”. One is cemented in the brain after a few days (the long term memory) and the other is readily available. As long as the biological connection remains between the cortex and the hippocampus, the memories will be available to our consciousness.

So what of fugue? What of amnesia? What of Trauma? What could this potentially tell us about Dissociative identities?

This is why I tend to disagree with people who refuse to believe in the reality of dissociative identity. I disagree for two reasons. 1) I’ve met someone who has shared his personal experience with it. 2) If the brain duplicates memories, one for the long term and one for the short term, what do you think it would do in reaction to memories it doesn’t want to deal with?

Our brains are emotional little creatures. Torture, abuse, anything to hurt our consciousness and soul seems to tip our little brains upside down. They react different ways because each brain is unique. It has the job of not only keeping our physical body alive, but our mental one as well. It harbors everything that we know about life. Taste. Smell. Sight. Hearing. It lets us feel warmth. It hosts every single thought we’ve ever had and ever will have. We learn. Not a computer in the world can match the amount of space or the speed we have in that little jiggly meat sack in our skulls. It interprets life for us and we have no choice but to trust it.

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Could you imagine forming simultaneous memories of being beat every day, locked in a closet, given rotten food for dinner and dirty water to wash it down with?

We know maybe a millionth of what there is to know about the brain. Memories could be duplicated ten times for all we know. We can’t test shit on humans, thanks to the fucking goody-two-shoes ethics committee, so we’ll probably never know.

If the brain has memories even it doesn’t want to see, it can’t destroy them–so it relocates them. And those memories pile up and up and up until they take on a kind of life of their own. A personality of their own, you could say.

Trauma affects everyone differently. Maybe they pile up and up and manifest themselves as mood swings. Maybe they pile up and up and manifest themselves as demons crawling through your floor sinking their bloody teeth into the fleshy parts of your upper arm. Maybe they pile up and up and manifest as a racing heart beat, lightheadedness, a tingling sensation in your limbs, and racing thoughts.

Not that trauma is the only area of life responsible for experiences like that, but for those of us who have been through some kind of trauma, you know what I’m talking about.

Let’s not take everything in life at face-value. And let’s be careful not to sum up such a simply complex experience of being conscious creatures to the limited amount of biology that we know.

If you’ve seen the movie “Split”, and you understood the actual message behind it, not this weird, misguided mass opinion of “uhhhh it’s making fun of people with mental problems errrrrrrrrgaawwdd”, you also know what I’m talking about.

A Testament Towards Feeling

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We are all fighters.

Survivors.

Warriors.

And I will never deny that fact.

To deal with whatever pain you experience day after day, minute after minute, hour after hour (physical, mental, terminal) means you have some kind of strength within you to keep going. It means you’re not willing to give your life up to something that wants to take you hostage. The people who have been through your pain, who can share in your pain, know the exhaustion you put yourself though and they smile and they say you’re strong. They say you’re resilient. They say you can make it because you’ve been making it. And all of their words are beautiful and heart felt and you trust them.

A connection makes all the difference.

disconnect-old-phoneSo what of those of us where connection has never been felt? What of those of us who use humor to interject ourselves because we have no other way of communicating? Those of us who get confused on when to say something, what to say, and how to say it? Those of us who consistently misinterpret someones tone of voice or facial expression to be malicious or crippled with ill intent? Those of us who have suddenly come to realization that this issue has caused a pattern of problems throughout their life?

What of those of us who have the crushing feeling that they’ve been copy-catting their way through life?

What does that mean? It probably means different things to different people. To some extent, we all copy someone else. We adopt each others mannerisms and ways of speech when we’re in a group. We see an outfit on someone and want the same. Some people call it being unoriginal, but I call that type of copying admiration–you like the outfit, it’s cute, so you buy it to also look cute.

To me, copying is a way of protecting myself. It’s not done for fun. In fact, I loathe myself for it deeply. In a conversation I copy the answers and mannerisms of the people around me not so they will like me, but so I don’t reveal how completely clueless I am in the rules of the flow of conversation. I don’t care if they like me. But I care if I look like the socially inept fool I am.

In the midst of two other people, I will not speak. Not because I don’t have something to say but because I’m not sure if it’s right to say. I’m particularly not sure when it’s appropriate to interject.

This makes the conversations I do manage to have very artificial. They’re sticking their maxresdefault2feelers out and I’m slapping them down by accident because I’m blind to them. I speak few words because of this issue. I’m brief and speak very quickly and often quietly.

I’m an observer. I watch how people converse, how they joke with each other, and I’ve pretty much analyzed all I can. I’ve got all these stray pieces strewn across the floor and I’m trying to come up with a formula that fits them together nicely. For example, in high school I noticed one big thing in conversation is eye contact. Not making it is weird, making it too much is also weird.

So I come up with an approximate time to stare at someone and an approximate, and appropriate time to look away. A good two or three seconds is alright, more if you’re still thinking of a response. It’s good to keep eye contact with someone while they’re talking because it shows your attention level, but it’s generally average to glance away once or twice while you’re speaking so it doesn’t become this creepy staring contest.

I still stare too long because I’m not sure if looking away makes me look more awkward or not. So it’s something I’ve been trying to understand since I was 16.

The missing link is in the flow. I don’t know how to keep a flow or stay on topic. Someone asks a question, you answer, what comes next? Why does anything have to come next?

I feel people think I’m not interested in them because I don’t ask about them. But I never knew I was supposed to . . .if someone wants me to know something about them, why don’t they just say it?

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I go silent often and people find that rude.

These are things I’ve thought about for the last year or so, things I’ve been recognizing in myself that I feel are the root cause of my social anxiety (next to my mistrust of people’s intentions, which probably stems from the fact that I can’t see anything but malice in their expressions or their words).

It came up today during supervisions. My supervisor asked me what could happen in the house that would integrate me into the team (I could take that one of two ways: 1) she wants to know how to improve communication throughout the team or 2)I’ve been recognized as the outcast I always am). She also asked if I even wanted to be part of the team (but she didn’t say it in a mean way, I don’t think).

I’m going to choose not to be offended, because experience tells me that wasn’t what she was aiming for, but it feels like I’m going through the same thing over and over again with the people back in grade school who constantly said “you’re too quiet, what can we do to make you more involved in the class?” or “can you participate more please?” or the people at one of my old jobs that said “we’re going to work on making you open up and have you work with [enter coworkers name] to make you a little louder on Thursday”.

It triggered me subconsciously I think and I put my guard up automatically.

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I said I did want to be part of the team. And I don’t think I lied. But I see how they operate, everyone is open with each other and it flows nicely and I don’t fit. I’m highly aware of that. I said I didn’t know what anyone could do. I wanted to say I have trouble making connections but I got lost in my speech as I often do, so I don’t really remember what I said.

It was something rehearsed, something I always say in response to these types of things because feelings are hard for me to distinguish when it comes to people. So I recite the feeling that is most common, that I hear most often, that makes the person the most happy, depending on the situation.

But personally, I go blank. The only feeling I’ve ever experienced from people is mistrust and anxiety from not understanding how they operate. So how could I answer a question like the above?

When she asked me whether or not I wanted to be apart of the team, I studied myself carefully. And felt a pull in neither direction. Blank. That was probably really awkward because she had no idea why I was silent.

book-1110648_960_720Anyone from any job could have asked me that, and my reaction would be the same. This is where I feel people misunderstand me: my feeling blank isn’t a testament to who they are as people, it’s a testament to my own feeling.

I don’t see why that is so hard to understand.

These people are not evil. Their not mean or horrible. In fact, they’re the best set of people I’ve met in my short life. But they are human, as most are, and that simple fact keeps me from relating. I’m distanced. Always have been.

So where do I go from here? I don’t know. This happens every job I go to, every class I’m in, every group I work with, every casual or focused conversation I have . . . it never changes, and it never has. Perhaps it will one day.

And I believe in order to change things, I need to understand this more clearly. I need another opinion. Even if that means spending 230 dollars on a 90 minute psychiatric opinion.

If you follow me, you know very well I’m not fond of “professionals” because of their lack of experience. But I have lack of experience being human and they have an abundance of it.

I have ideas from past psychologists and my current one. But perhaps it’s time to get a medical opinion as well, just something else in my arsenal of “tools I’m using to find myself”.

 

 

Odd

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You know those days you go into therapy and you wonder if you will ever understand things, and then a couple words are exchanged and sudden realization pulses through your vein and hemorrhages in your frontal lobe?

Sometimes you can have moments in therapy that were slightly uncomfortable that you needed to have in order to breathe again.

I will try and rehash the experience. Unfortunately, dissociation took over and I can’t remember half of the conversation.

Firstly, you all know how I feel about diagnosis by now. It’s been a year. Which, congratulations on this blog and all of my followers who have been here from the beginning, and those who have been here recently, I appreciate every person who reads, likes, comments, or even just skims. Writing has been my only true connection to the human population I am apparently apart of (I still think I’m an alien), so when I say I’m grateful for you all, I mean it.

Anyway, if you’re new, I basically hold a middle finger to DSM and ICD-10 diagnosis.

bird-comeback-emoji-fangirling-favim-com-2590219And in particular, I hold ADHD on a special “fuck you” throne, simply because it’s handled so carelessly. They diagnose the children in elementary school because they won’t be quiet in class, and ignore the fact that schools are taking away recess and parents aren’t well versed in handling a child or well versed in what a nutritional diet is, and teachers aren’t fucking psychologists and don’t have the right to say “well, I”m going to recommend this child be checked for ADHD because she keeps interrupting me”.

Then comes the medication. Then comes behavioral issues, irritation, and the Zombie effect.

Then they say “ADHD is rising in America” and people believe it because they only see the surface. Because they don’t see that just because diagnosis is increasing, doesn’t necessarily mean true ADHD is.

So I don’t hold the idea of ADHD particularly high.

That does not mean I feel every diagnosis is fake. In fact, I’ve always noticed an abundance of the characteristics in myself, and that was confirmed yesterday in therapy. Yes, I do have some of the characteristics. It makes it very hard to focus or think. Is that part of a larger picture and not ADHD? Possibly. Who knows. The point is, for those with a true diagnosis of ADHD, I understand your pain, and it’s frustrating that the reality of the issue is hidden beneath a behemoth of misdiagnosis.

But when we began speaking about people and how difficult it is to express my ideas (even when I have them) . . .

and this is where it gets rocky. I don’t remember the conversation. 

I remember we spoke about perhaps not being positively reinforced as a child when it came to my ideas and therefore I developed a sense of “well, what does it matter what I say?” and it became a subconscious habit.

Then I remember we started talking about people and my connection–or rather, disconnection to them.

And that’s where it ends.

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A Clear Representation Of My Awareness

I remember staring at the bookcase in the back of the room and everything essentially melted away. I didn’t feel present any longer. I couldn’t pinpoint where my body was and the experience of sitting in that room didn’t feel real and whoever was speaking for me wasn’t me. It was like a light switch had been flicked . . .

Off.

I don’t remember what was discussed. I can remember the physical aspects of the room because I’ve been there so many times.

If you didn’t know already, if you’re a newcomer, I have a problem with dissociation. It creates breaks in reality for me when things get uncomfortable, when my anxiety is high, and although I am completely fascinated by the brains ability to find creative ways to protect itself, sometimes I wish it would fuck off.

I remember feeling like a few things were spilling out of me, things I didn’t normally say. Nothing too heavy, but just general things I keep pent up often. That was the feeling I got, but I wasn’t speaking.

I don’t believe I was tortured as a child. Put in bad situations, witnessed bad things, yes, but I was not tortured or horribly abused. I do not have Dissociative Identity Disorder, in case you were wondering.

Sometimes I am just absent.

And the rest of me handles whatever situation it feels I cannot.

That makes me feel like there are parts of me hiding things from me.

What makes talking about being disconnected from people and not really understanding why so traumatic that my brain feels the need to block me from the rest of the conversation?

I left feeling a little relieved, like I’d had some major realization.

I just wasn’t there for the realization.

That’s like getting invited to a party, arriving at the house, ringing the doorbell, and realizing they gave you the wrong address on purpose.

It’s a little odd.

 

Priceless

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I was told today “You have an awesome life”.

I paused before I answered, mostly because I was stuck in traffic for an hour and a half when it takes me ten minutes to cross town normally. But I also paused to reflect on the last week, to think about the people I’ve met, the struggles they’ve been through, and the way I’ve been humbled this week within myself.

I’ve been humbled because I’ve realized how not alone I am. I’m humbled because I learned how valuable connection is and how valuable trust is. I’ve never trusted someone enough to tell them how much I don’t trust people.

I’m going to severely miss those connections. Although there are other ways to stay connected, it won’t be the same for me.

It’s been a very lonely existence in my life. I stick to my ground that I’m not a social person, I don’t care to have many friends. But this week speaking with people who understand, being able to talk about things like suicide and self injury without someone’s eyes growing wide and them saying “are you safe? do I need to call someone?” without giving me a chance to explain my feelings, is priceless.

Orangutans LaughingThere are things we can laugh about that someone without lived experience wouldn’t laugh at. And it’s a different kind of laughter for me, it’s a kind of laughter where you remember a time you were in that situation and you remember how you got out of it, and now when someone is sarcastic about it, you can see the humor in it.

To reiterate, it’s a very lonely existence. I don’t feel comfortable speaking about my issues to people who haven’t had them because I know their level of understanding can only be on an “I care for you level” rather than an “I care for you and I know how hard it is” level.

I met people with a lot of different diagnoses: anorexia, DID, Schizophrenia, Depression, anxiety, Bulimia, Bipolar, e.t.c. But the wonderful thing is we didn’t talk about those diagnoses. In fact, I didn’t know many of them until the last day. We talked about mania as a reaction. We talked about voices as a reaction.

I find it interesting when it comes to something like having multiple personalities that we recognize those voices and alters as a result of Trauma, but when someone hears voices with a schizophrenia diagnosis, there’s no possible way in hell their voices could be a result of inner pain or unexpressed emotion or trauma. That’s just preposterous! 

Just like the voices that come next to a diagnosis of depression psychosis. Oh, those voices are part of the psychosis, not the unrelenting pain, never, it’s biological remember?

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Also Not Common

I’m aware this view is not common, and I’ve never spent my life having common views so I can sit well with them and enjoy them. Other people may get offended. We talked about this as well.

There has to be a clear distinction with this stuff. I am very careful not to say that “mental illness does not exist” because people fly off the handle. So instead, I say the diagnoses of mental illness does not exist, in my opinion. Yes, I experience life a little different in a way than you. Yes, a crowd makes me so anxious and paranoid I lie to get out of going places and instead sit in my bed and wonder about people who don’t have that reaction.

Yes, I’ve hallucinated things briefly that frightened me. Spiders crawling on the wall, people running at my car, demons popping up in front of me, e.t.c.

Yes, I’ve self-harmed and wanted to kill myself many, many, many times.

Yes, there are days when I could conquer the world, when I have tons of ideas and want to execute them all and times when I’ve mapped out plans to do so all night long like a ritual then there are days I could easily drive my car off a cliff or put a gun to my head.

Yes, there are days I feel utterly empty and don’t know what to do about it, so I go drive my car all night, erratically, freak some other drivers out, and smoke weed and hope to get pulled over so the cop sees all the scars all over my body and I can give him a run for his money on whether or not I should go to the hospital.

Honestly, I feel like luck has kept me from the hospital.

Sometimes I feel like I’m three different people. Each of us has our own view of the world, our own way to act, and they each have their own opinion on how I should handle things.

There are many more things, but lets not bore each other here.

'Do you realize what ethics has cost us this year.'Now, who is to say that those things, the way I experience my life, is wrong? Take into account my only experience with drifting from reality is derealization, so I don’t necessarily know the fear and pain that goes into descending into full psychosis. But even then, there are ways to see psychosis and ways to think about it that relate to a way of expression, a way the brain tries to handle the world it lives in.

In fact, that’s how I see these things we called “disorders”. I see them as different ways our brain reacts to the world around us. Different interpretations of our own personal head space and our own lives. One person may see the color red, another person may feel like it’s more of a pink. One person likes the taste of cucumber, another person puckers at it. One person hates the smell of gas, another person, for some reason, enjoys it.

One person hallucinates a looming man while standing in the shower (taken from someone I met a few years back) and is tormented by it until the person is forced in the fetal position in the bottom of the tub; another person paints until the pain is gone.

Our brains are like finger prints. They will handle situations differently, they will react to situations differently. Does that warrant characterization? Does that warrant sending out the message that “your brain is broken, it’s sick, and so are you”? 

Well, your tongue is broken if you think black olives taste bad. You have a tongue disorder.

Vinegar is too strong a smell for you? Well, it’s not for the majority of people. Your nose has a disorder. It probably needs some surgery and some daily nasal spray.

You get my point.

So to reply to the first statement, yeah, you know what? My life is awesome. My struggles exist like everyone else’s and I am lucky enough to experience the world in a different way. To me, that’s also priceless.