To Be Or Not To Be “Disabled”. . . That Is The Question.

How do you respond to failure?

How do you respond to not “doing your best”?

I think these are two questions we have to ask ourselves constantly when dealing with our mental health. How do you respond to feeling “unwell”? How do you respond when you feel your “symptoms” or as I like to say, your mental health experiences, start interfering with your daily, hourly, tasks?

As I am only 21, I feel I am striving to improve on this daily. My current response is “curl in a ball and ignore the world”.

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I’m not sure how far that will take me.

What are your healthy and not so healthy ways of dealing with your struggles?

I’m sure you can guess by reading my “This Is Me” portion of my blog, that my diagnoses have always hopped across the spectrum of “mental disorders” as the DSM calls them, and I’ve never been through enough services or in enough crisis situations to warrant a decent one or two. This creates many problems.

This creates many problems because when you are not labeled, you do not get extra services. You don’t get your tests proctored in other rooms. You don’t get social security (you just hop around from job to job every couple of months hoping something will stick, knowing full well you’re not prepared for anything just yet), and no one believes what you say because a doctor hasn’t signed a little piece of paper.

It’s frustrating. Not to make psychosis seem like a walk in the park, because I know it’s not, but Christ sake, if I was running down the street without any clothes and covering myself in mud so the CIA satellites couldn’t track me anymore, or if I went to the ER and said “the FBI put a chip in my head, they’re recording my conversation, you need to surgically remove this right now” or I went into therapy and said “Every time I read a book Satan removes the words from my head and laughs at me, he follows me everywhere”, I would get some attention. I would get a very strong, and adamant label. Life would be very confusing and it would be hell to be stuck bouncing in and out of that. But I would have a label. 

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The small pile of “magical beliefs” or whatever the hell part of my personality that got me the “possibly, maybe, who-knows” “semi-partial, not really official” diagnosis of Schizotypal PD is not enough to count for anything. They probably messed up on that too: I’m more paranoid about demons following me and people conspiring against me than I am “magical”. Or is that magical too?

Whatever.

And this is where I’ve ended up: arguing back and forth with people over characteristics of myself.

Today I wanted to go to the Accessibility Support Center at my college to hopefully register with them, meet with a DSS (disabled students services) coordinator and be able to get accomodations like tutors and my tests proctored in a different, sound proof room with no people so I could concentrate for once.

Unfortunately, two things stopped me from getting out of my car.

  1. I can’t go places by myself. I drove all the way to campus, stared at the sign and drove off. I’ve never been able to shop for myself or go anywhere by myself. There is one market I can withstand about fifteen minutes from my house by car because it is large and it’s rarely ever packed, at least not during the hours I go. I don’t get my hair cut. I don’t shop for clothes, shoes, or anything I can’t get at that one market. I don’t go into the financial aid office the enrollment office or any office on campus without a friend with me. I can’t even print a piece of paper without someone with me. How the fuck am I going to walk into a place, say hey, I have mental problems, I’m fucking crazy, let me take my tests in a sound proof room please? 
  2. I don’t have a label. I’m walking into a place where quadriplegics, people with learning disabilities, Down Syndrome, severe Autism, e.t.c all go to say “hey, I need this help” and I’m sitting there looking normal, acting normal, without papers or documentation asking for something the person across the counter is going to assume I don’t need. This part is my anxiety of being judged.

You ever have anxiety of being judged as not having a mental struggle? That’s a new one. That’s when you know you’re fucked up. 

dependentFrom where I stand, I am extremely dependent. People go to the store for me. They do laundry for me most of the time (it’s hard for me because the laundry room for the apartment complex is very loud, the washing machines are loud, and if a cricket breaks its leg on the window sill the crack echos off all four walls. It’s just sensory overloading. Not to mention running into other people in there. That’s my nightmare.), they make appointments for me, phone calls for me, e.t.c. Sometimes the depression fatigues me so I can barely put something in the microwave.

You might be thinking what any social security officer or doctor might think: well, you have a job. You went to the interview on your own. You went to the office and did the paperwork on your own. You’ve done your laundry before. You drive.

And I have done all those things. But nothing is ever maintained. Every time I think I’m doing well, I backslide and everything overwhelms my mind. I only work three times a week and I’m already feeling like I can’t handle it. I’m ready to quit again.

I know people say “you can do it, don’t give up!”

Listen. You can’t see the floor on my room. There are crickets crawling around on my computer desk as we speak and I have no idea where they came from. It’s a wonder I haven’t made more attempts on my life with the amount of time I spend thinking about it. My cumulative G.P.A has fallen from a 4.0 to a 3.5, that literally makes me cringe to write. I can’t sleep at night because my heart rate decides to pull a NASCAR and race, I wake up thinking “well, shit” and go to sleep thinking “well, shit”, and today, realizing that I can’t do a simple task to make things easier for me, something for myself, at college has only beaten down my morale once again.

I have to go into work in about twenty minutes. If I make it through this week without banging my head against the wall until I’m unconscious or slitting my wrists vertically, it will be a miracle.

That’s not a joke, I”m a self-harmer.

People need to stop making jokes like that. “Ha, ha, Imma slit my wrist”. How is that funny. I don’t get it.

Anyway.

All Shit

It is 4:19 in the morning.

You guys, do I really have to say anything other than that?

I’m tired as shit. 

This post is going to be shit. 

Because I’m tired as shit. 

And sick of shit.

It’s just all shit. 

You see, I have 8 dollars left in one of my accounts because someone was a little too excited these last few weeks and went shopping, went out to eat, bought useless items online while she was up thinking about all the ways she was going to become a millionaire on YouTube and all the ways she was going to build her own PC and get a studio and how she was destined to do this for the world and . . . and . . .

Obviously, those ideas and that confidence and that euphoria was short lived. Last week was my transition week back down to earth. My emotions were spinning out of control as they usually do, I was sleeping 11-14 hours a day, and now that it’s all over with, now that I’m generally stable, I see the damage that was done. I’m broke as fuck, ya’ll.

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But it’s okay. I can make it through this.

I’ve been lonely and frustrated with reoccurring thoughts of failure pressuring behind my eyes. I’m really good at fucking things up and not so good at repairing them.

But it’s okay. I can make it through this.

I’m a self-harming addict. Were you all aware of that? I don’t think I’ve spoken much on it. My scars on my wrists are really visible in the day light; I’ve had friends stare at them and say “what is that?” and I say “what are you talking about?” and they say “I can obviously see it” and I’m like “awesome. Let’s focus on something that isn’t my life, please”.

Remember, I’m the clown of the group. I’m not supposed to have problems, I’m too funny for that.

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One just gave me a hug instead of opening her mouth any further, and I appreciated that.

But I’m not someone who falls to temptation easily. My brain battles with me to harm myself–yes, you read that right. It spends more time and energy trying to convince me to harm myself than I do telling it no. I’ve been doing this since I was eleven years old. About ten years. I’ve gotten used to ignoring and scolding that little voice in my head that tells me I need to feel the pain.

Then there are times when I let them take control.

I used to harm myself (burn, cut, e.t.c) when I felt depressed, when I was lonely, when I was homeless and essentially forced into public education every day.

Then there were a few good years I didn’t self harm. And those were the years I learned to accept the depression and the anxiety, those were the years I learned I wasn’t alone and that there were other people in the world who felt the same. Those were the years I was generally stable, when medication kinda-sorta helped, when I found a passion in life I wanted to pursue.

Then one day I woke up with slits across the old scars and a wrap around my arm my tired self must have used to control the bleeding. And I thought . . . hmm. This again, eh?

Because a new dilemma has stepped into my life and that dilemma is unidentified emotions. When I’m angry, happy, depressed, disgruntled, elated, confused, fiery, agitated, irritated, generally okay, and lonely all at once, I get frightened. I try and distract myself but I end up crying and planning my suicide . . .until a moment later I’m convinced I was put here on this earth to complete a specific task and influence people’s lives like a messiah . . . until a moment later I want to tackle the next person I see and pummel their face into a bloody pulp . . . until I’m suddenly okay. Until I’m not again, a few moments later.

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It continues for hours and hours until I feel I’ve lost control of myself. Every sentence someone speaks to me ignites another bomb behind my eyes. These are the days I prefer to not be around anymore, not my boyfriend, not my parents, not a friend, no one.

So I find a way to physically hurt myself. It’s the only moment of control I have. And it’s often made me calmer, it’s made me present and in the moment.

There are a lot of misconceptions around self harm. That needy teenagers do it for attention. That only idiots do it. That it’s something stupid, it’s something that has no deeper meaning behind it besides how ignorant the human race can be.

First of all, what’s so wrong with wanting attention? Are you telling me the assholes in false advertising, the business moguls of this century, e.t.c aren’t attention seeking little whores? Give me a break.

Second of all, if a teenager is harming themselves it doesn’t become a matter of them being attention seeking or dramatic or stupid. It becomes a matter of you needing to give them attention. Because regardless of whether they are wanting it or not, it’s something they need. Something is not right, and something is hurting them deeply. Think of it this way: the scars on the outside represent the fight on the inside.

That being said, tonight I didn’t listen to the little voice. Tonight was successful because I’m in control of myself tonight.

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Quick announcement before I flop my head on this fucking pillow and pass out. I’m a contributor for a fairly new little website called “My Trending Stories” and I want to split the mental health topic I have started here with that site. I figured I’d keep that one a little more informational and critique-y and this one a little less formal and more personal.

If you’d like to check out my profile, click here.

If you’d like to browse through My Trending Stories, click here.

After careful consideration I agreed to write for them because I see potential in this website. It reminds me of a young Thought Catalog. There’s a large variety of articles and writing styles, kind of like WordPress but more Thought Catalog-y. My vocabulary at 4:57 in the morning is fucking amazing.

Anyway, there are tons of categories to read under and stories that can keep you entertained for days.

No, I’m not paid to promote them, I figured I’d just put out a good word about them because they’re pretty cool.

Check it out.

I’m going to sleep because fuck everything.

Medication Contemplation

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What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear “mental disorder”?

I think for a lot of people it’s sequentially “medication”.

Let’s talk about that.

I haven’t kept it secret that the field I am going into, the field of psychiatry, is very inadequate at keeping track of who they medicate, why they medicate them, and yet is very adequate at hiding research results of medication. I haven’t kept it secret that there are lots of pill pushing physicians and pill pushing pharmaceutical companies. Let’s put it all on the table and be honest about it: medicine is a business. It’s not about you, it’s not about your health, it’s about how much money they can make off your health.

That doesn’t make medication any less important. That doesn’t make your health any less important. And although I stopped medication years ago, it doesn’t defeat the fact that I realize how much harder I’m making it on myself.

So every once in a while the thought slips into my mind: see a psychiatrist. Talk to them. See what they recommend. You have the smarts to tell them they’re being ignorant if you feel they’re being ignorant.

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Then I think about everyone who has had the displeasure of being stuck in “the cycle”. We all know what the cycle is:

  1. Try medication.
  2. Hate side effects.
  3. Try different medication
  4. Doesn’t work.
  5. Try different medication.
  6. Hate side effects
  7. Doctor gives another medication to combat first medication side effects.
  8. New side effects. New Health problem
  9. Two new medications.
  10. Cocktail of pills at the end of the day.

“The Cycle”.

Then there are people who get stuck in the “secondary cycle”:

  1. Find good medication
  2. Develop tolerance
  3. Up dosage
  4.  Doesn’t work
  5. Coming down off medication is too hard
  6. Stays on medication.

There are about fifty other common cycles we could discuss here.

It’s hard for me to sacrifice my personal beliefs. I am not one to readily put a man-made product in my body. It doesn’t react well with me, it feels wrong, it’s foreign, it’s a form of control. . .

And yet, here I am contemplating it once more.

I think this is common for many of us who struggle. We teeter between a variable amount of medicinal release and a variable amount of “I can handle this”. The result:

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But then I think of the cycle I currently live in.

  1. A few good days.
  2. Heavy anxiety
  3. Paranoia
  4. Depression
  5. Mood swings
  6. insomnia
  7. Suicidal ideation
  8. self harm
  9. depression
  10. A few good days.

“The other Cycle”.

This alter of mine ( I like to consider it as such) is, simply put, a beast. Teflon strong. Impenetrable.

Were I to live a life inside of my room six days out of the week with no threat of ever having to drift from routine, with no threat of ever having to learn new skills or meet new people, I could manage these things. But that’s not a life I want myself to live, that’s a life my alter prefer I live.

I feel this is something that is often common with some people who struggle. It’s easier not to tempt our comfort zone with abandonment. It’s easier to be in our heads and know where we stand. It’s easier to watch the world carry on than to even think of interacting with it on an on-going basis.

pharmacy_software_trainingTomorrow I start the week long training course for the counseling position I work. They do it every year and you need to attend at least 4.5 days out of the 5. Each day is 7.5 hours and although I know I am surrounded with people like me, I know my trust issues will get in the way of me connecting with them the way they will try and connect with me. I don’t believe their eyes, their expressions, their words, their body language, none of it. It’s as if they’re impostors, mimicking human beings in an effort to mock me.

Today I became much more aware of my hoarding issues. I’m one to buy things online that I only use a few times, then set it off to collect dust. I keep old papers from years before, and the majority of the time my floor, my desk, my dresser, and bed-side furniture are overflowing with things to the point where you can barely see floor or desk top. And when it comes to “clean”, as I’ve had to do partially today because an electrician is coming tomorrow and the spark plug box is in my closet, I shut down.

Every step someone makes near or in my room, I snap at them. Every paper touched, even torn ones, I have to read and touch to make sure I don’t want to keep it. I hold onto the majority of things, but I have the ability to  toss some things if they are absolutely useless. I’ve been worse.

And when I finally see things starting to clear up, I panic. My sensitivities skyrocket, just the simple sound of paper crumpling or the movement of someone’s arm passing by me to pick up something sends me into a rage. I just want everything and everyone to stand still, shut up, and let me think in silence.

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The whole process has exhausted me even more. And as usual, I don’t have anyone willing to talk to me about it, nor do I feel like bothering anyone at 11:30 at night.

So I think about medication. I think about how it would dull some of the anxiety and paranoia, how it would blunt some of the moods as well. I think about how it might help me think clearer, get rid of some of the miscellaneous thoughts clouding up my vision and preventing me from smoothly writing this post right now. It might even ward off some of the depression.

There is a possibility I could live easier than I am.

I enjoy who I am. I love my personality, I love the quirks of my day. I love seeing the world in a different light and honestly I love being suspicious of every one and everything. Why would I want that defense dulled? I love living in fantasy. I love having overloads of ideas and shocking people.

But it all comes with a price.

I don’t remember a moment from the time I was aware of myself consciously where I wasn’t living in a fantasy world, where I wasn’t in my own head,  where I wasn’t anxious about every living and non-living thing. Sometimes I wonder what it’s like to not have that.

normalAnd I think that’s what attracts many of us to medication when we first hear about it: the prospects of living as close to a societal “normal” as possible. Because the concept of normal is quite attractive.  The concept of relief is quite attractive. The concept of not being lost within your struggles or your disorders is quite attractive.

I don’t know what I will do. A psychiatrist is appealing, but expensive.

I will not go to another physician for my mental health, for Gods sake that’s a nightmare and pointless.

Perhaps I will just go in for a consultation. Perhaps I will talk about my options and ask the right questions. Perhaps I will make them tell me what they don’t tell the average person because the average person doesn’t ask.

It doesn’t hurt to try yet again, does it?

Acceptance Of The Self

Is morality like etiquette?

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I’m not going to answer it, I just wanted to give you a question to think about for the day.

I had an interview at a nursing home this morning for a housekeeper position. These past few months have been rough: I’m fatigued, I’m tired, I’m forgetting more than usual and of course I’m skating through most of the day wondering if I’ve stuck in a dream or not. Today, luckily, has been relatively chill.

But my mentality has taken a toll on me, so when the secretary asked me what position I was applying for, I couldn’t remember the word “housekeeper”. I said “the person who sweeps and mops”.

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I laughed at myself harder than I probably should have.

The manager who interviewed me was high as fuck. He could hardly keep his eyes open and when he spoke he slurred his words. He moved fairly quickly however and seemed to keep up well with his staff, so from all the drugs and addiction I’ve grown up around I can safely assume he’s on some kind of pills. His cognition was there, so were the majority of his reflexes, but his speech and eyes and general demeanor were not that of the average sober person.

I had to sign a “we have a right to drug test you” clause in the application.

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I suspected Xanax or perhaps a benzo; his position seemed to be high stress as he was constantly running around the facility trying to make sure his staff members weren’t fucking something up.  His desk was a tragedy. Paper all over the place. I didn’t even have room to fill out the paperwork.

It’s odd that much of my social anxiety has sort of taken a back seat for the time being. I still wouldn’t give a speech or go to parties or anything like that comfortably, but in terms of going into stores, doing interviews, working with other people, it’s gotten much easier. I see that as progress. An odd sort of progress because I haven’t really been practicing anything. 

What I struggle with now more than anything is the tendency towards Alexithymia-I can’t distinguish my emotions from each other. They’re all a whirlwind inside of my head and as a result I lash out. These are the days I usually take something or smoke something to level me out, but because I have no more prescriptions available and because I’m still applying to jobs which may drug test me upon hire, I can’t risk it.

So instead I’m standing waist deep in my own personal hell.

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I thought today would be okay because I woke up feeling alright. The last week has been a haze. I can’t describe an ounce of how I feel in words. I tried last night, I’ve tried many nights, and being a writer it’s more than frustrating when you can’t put something as simple as emotion into words. So instead I write about how I can’t write about it. That makes sense, right?

So I use music to distract myself from my own thoughts. It’s louder than my brain so it makes it easier for me to focus. As long as there is noise, I can focus. If there isn’t background noise and all I’m alone with is me and my thoughts then I get confused, overwhelmed, and only more tired.

I just spend my day wondering if the tree outside of the library is real or what would happen if it wasn’t. I wonder if I’m real, if you’re real, if the table I’m sitting at is real, and if the hands I see typing on the keyboard belong to me and what if they didn’t? I feel unreal, my actions feel unreal, my words sometimes don’t sound like they’re coming from me, I don’t feel connected to the world, blah, blah, etcetera, etcetera.

I’m not bothered by it, it just takes up a lot of time during the day.

depersonalization_by_danger99-d2lfkldOver the years I’ve learned to accept the derealization, the constant pondering, and my tendency to wonder if an event happened or if I’m still dreaming. I write off the feeling that I’m still dreaming. I wrote off the feeling that the incident in the vault never happened and I imagined it-I’ve already concluded it didn’t happen so there’s no need to continue thinking about it.

I write it all off because of the simple fact that it hasn’t disrupted my life like anxiety and depression has. Sure people think I don’t care about things (I.e, my room is a mess, I mean you can barely walk through it, I rarely do laundry and just salvage old clothes or hand wash in the sink if I absolutely need something) and sometimes they get annoyed because I won’t talk because I’m so deep in my head, I won’t laugh because I honestly don’t know, sometimes I just don’t feel like I can, or if they just meet me they don’t understand why I won’t share facts about myself with them or why I don’t feel like making eye contact or why I barely respond to them at all in some cases.

But in reality (ha, in your definition of reality I should say) none of those things bother me. Depression that makes me suicidal bothers me. Anxiety that prevents me from speaking up in class or asking a question when I need it bothers me. The fact that I can’t be comfortable at any moment outside bothers me.

Do I really need to tell the different between reality, dreams, and fantasy to live my life? Depending on the severity, not necessarily.

Think about it.

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If I feel I’m living in a dream or I can’t tell if I’m awake or if what I experience was a dream or not, but I still go on about my day, I still study, I still work, I still function then what difference does it make?

If I’m not sure if my hands are mine but I’m still typing with them, what does it matter?

If I don’t feel like talking with people and still live life content with limited human contact, what does it matter?

I think that’s where people get stuck in the process of overthinking their “problems”. I’ve been comfortable questioning what was real and what wasn’t since I was 6 or 7 years old, I’ve been comfortable with bouncing back and forth between reality and fantasy too. In fact, I’ve never really separated the two. I’ve always seen the world differently. Am I aware that such a thing could snowball into something more “serious”? Sure. Am I going to sit there and act like I have a problem right now? Fuck no. And I think the fact that I’m as comfortable with such things as I am has helped my functionality.

Anyone else who stepped unprepared inside of my brain wouldn’t survive.

To me, what’s in my brain is normality. People who go through life without analyzing the reality of every little thing or people who have never sat at a table, stared at the floor, and had to ask themselves “am I dreaming?” scare me. That’s not normal.

So there’s a reason this blog focuses particularly on depression and anxiety because those are the aspects of myself that I find most troublesome. Not being able to talk to a classmate frustrates me more than the fact that i can’t tell whether or not the incident in the vault at work ever happened. Waking from a dead sleep into a panic attack, slicing or burning myself frustrates me more than my belief that I’m destined to change the world per some otherworldly intervention, or my introverted tendencies.

What do I think of the boss who is obviously abusing his prescription medication? Well, he’s accepted reality is reality and he doesn’t like it. So he medicates. I accept reality isn’t reality, that as a result reality is a fantasy and therefore one in the same. I don’t medicate. 

Curious, eh?

Snitches Everywhere

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I have been absent.

I feel as if I said that last time. Did I? I can’t remember anything.

These past few days have been trying. They’ve been tough and I’ve been struggling, and the more I reach out for help it seems the more people recoil. I enjoy their enthusiasm and their hope for me, I’m sure I absolutely deserve it. I mean, I’m never anyone’s shoulder to cry on or anyone’s personal confidant, ever.

If you couldn’t tell, that’s sarcasm.

With work picking up, it becomes apparent how important this position is to the people I work with and how important perfectionism is to this department. You can’t afford to make a mistake when you and your partner are stomping your away across the street with twenty thousand dollars between the two of you.

Perhaps I shouldn’t have picked a department that plays off of one my greatest weakness that also happens to be one of my greatest strengths. I’ve hated my perfectionism and my sensitivity to criticism ever since I realized the toll it takes on your mental health. Having to be right all the time is a lot of pressure on yourself. A pressure you create that you ultimately find yourself blaming others for. How covertly conceited.

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At any rate, the friend I got hired made a mistake and pulled an extra hundred from one of the machines my department manages. They had to do a lot of editing and balancing to get everything back to normal. I was the last new employee not to make a mistake yet.

I didn’t hold onto that title for too long. 

The first night I was on my own without a trainer over my shoulder, I took every precaution. I read my notes as I processed bills and coin and paper work. If I was 99.99999 percent sure of something, I didn’t take a chance and asked one of the leads/managers to help me. As much as that takes a toll on my social anxiety disorder, the thought of making a major mistake and the toll that would have on 1) my self esteem and 2) my perfectonistic self-loathing scared me much worse.

At the end of the night I left feeling generally pleased with myself. One goal I had for myself in getting this job was developing a sense of independence and demolishing my dependent nature and after that night, it seemed as if things were going just the way I planned.

Honestly, I should have just stepped in front of a car at that thought. Does anything ever go as anyone plans? Thinking that way is just a recipe for disaster, let’s be honest here people. The moment you blurt words like that to the universe is the moment Murphy’s law is stapled to your back.

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I already haven’t been feeling my greatest. My depression is settling in the more dissatisfied I am with school  and the direction my life is heading. So when I heard I made a major mistake that one night, the only night I felt decent about myself, I fell into a pit. And I’ve been here for a few days now.

The mistake? A computer error. I processed ONE DIME, TEN CENTS, and the fucking computer I was using printed it on three other receipts, receipts that I didn’t process any coin on at all, and my dumbass check marked the ten cents as if it were 0.00.

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You’re supposed to see 0.00 when you don’t process coin. Somehow 0.10 got past my vision. It backed up morning shift three hours. They need to have everything balanced by 7 a.m (an hour after they clock in) and my mistake cost them a lot of hours and caused a lot of headaches. My director was not pleased and so far two of the morning shift people will not speak to me or even look at me.

For the remainder of my first day back after my mistake, the director also avoided eye contact with me. I thought it all a little childish. He speaks with me now but my trainer warned me the more mistakes I make, the more he dislikes you.

Well for fucks sake, excuse my fucking humanity. 

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As I said, my depression was already creeping up on me and it hit me hard after I realized I was suddenly the most hated new employee of the cash room. For a computer error.

I had no problem admitting that I should have caught the mistake. But my trainer stuck up for me: she never told them I was cleared to process things on my own, someone should have been watching me. And it wasn’t technically my fault; I expected to see 0.00 so that was what I saw, even when the numbers read 0.10. I understand I should have caught it. But their computer system shouldn’t be that shitty.

The last few days I’ve been drifting into blissful suicidal fantasies. I’m not someone who is hell bent on having a good job or any of that. I enjoy thinking and being by myself and I hate being pressured into positions I’m not comfortable with, into drama, into all that petty bullshit they should have left behind in elementary school. I miss the days I could write for hours or take my camera for a walk. Now I don’t have the energy for any of it.

I’m just not happy.

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I struggle with finding happiness ever, really. I am positive, I always try to direct myself in that direction for other people’s sake, not mine. It never helps me. But it seems to help others to see someone stronger and more positive than they are. I envy them greatly.

Even if I sat in a customized studio fit to write for days on end, I wouldn’t find happiness. It’s unattainable for me. The only time I feel an ounce of happiness is when I’m with my boyfriend. But even then there are times the dullness creeps in and I find myself fighting hard to not ruin his day.

But inside I’m dull, blank, empty.

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And as a seasoned self-harmer, that usually means it’s time to burn something or cut something. I don’t do it often anymore, but when I do the marks are rather large and severe and I cover them with sleeves or pants or shirts or whatever.

Today, while putting on a backpack to get ready to take some cash to the upper levels, my sleeve got hoisted up by a backpack sleeve (despite my careful efforts to never let any outsiders find out the truth about me) and one of the shift leads saw. I know he saw because I spun around, absolutely mortified, and found him staring directly at me. I gave him the look I rarely give people: tell someone and I fucking murder you.

He looked down instantly. I took my belongings and left as swiftly as possible. I’ve never been caught in such a way. In fact, I started panicking. I blanked out for a few minutes and the only thing I remember is sitting back in the cash office whispering to myself. That’s when happens when I get frustrated: thoughts flood my brain and the only way I feel I can stop them is by telling myself to shut the fuck up out loud. It has to be out loud. Obviously that’s not acceptable in a work environment, so I whisper it or breathe in loud or clench my teeth and twitch my head to the right and roll my eyes.

Don’t ask how, but it all helps.

This particular lead shift is a snitch. My trainer says so. Anything you say he passes on to the director, so you’ve always got to be careful around him. Whether or not he told the other shift leads and director, I don’t know yet. But I’m sure he will. What will happen then? Stigma, stigma, and more stigma. 

I’m intelligent. I learn quickly. But I’ve never been happy or satisfied and if I am, it’s artificial, short lived, and abrupt. Then it’s gone and I’m left to this black abyss.

 

In All Seriousness, Let’s Be Serious

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We’re going to be serious for a moment.

Well not too serious, ya’ll should know me by now.

But the topic is pretty serious. That being said, I want to warn anyone this post contains thoughts about suicide so please read at your own risk, particularly if those thoughts are active in you. I have a few lists of resources you can contact if you’re struggling here at the bottom of the page. One is international, one is the regular national hotline in the U.S, and the other is geared specifically towards those who either have trouble speaking on the phone or just prefer to seek help in other ways.

I’d advise you to give it a peek–especially if you have social anxiety with depression and find yourself in ridiculous holes and need someone to talk to about it without having to have an actual voice-to-voice or face-to-face conversation.

If you’re anything like me, even talking on the phone is insufferable.

But this post isn’t going to complain about how horrible my life is. Because in reality, I don’t live that horrible of a life. Sure, I grew up with a violent drug addict/alcoholic, a very passive, quiet mother, and no friends or family or sense of culture. I’ve been homeless and suffered through suicidal ideation since I was eleven years old. But I’m alive, bitch.

xwithdrawal-symptoms-pagespeed-ic-umnsff0vnlI remember when we lived in a room of a house next to Burger King. If you’ve read my other posts, you would know this house as the one with the woman who downed a million fucking Vicodin or Xanax or some shit then a bottle of jack and wandered around the house looking for knives to kill herself or a wall to bang her head against. If you haven’t read that post, well . . . now you know.

As an eleven year old I didn’t really understand why anyone would self-destruct. I understood she was tormented–after all, I did live with my father–but it was hard to conceive of why that torment hurt her so much. I had no feelings towards her. I didn’t want to find a dead woman on the floor of the kitchen but when she went into those states and we had to call the police I was pretty indifferent to it. It happened every other weekend.

Anyway, I remember the first day I thought of killing myself. I stepped outside of the house because shit man, it gets annoying in there with six dogs running around and three women and their friends all partying. So when they got a cat I found my best friend. I can’t remember her name, but I used to sit out in the bench in the backyard and write songs and the kitten would curl up next to me and keep me company. She’d let me pet her and love her and talk to her and I like to think she helped me write my songs.

Yes, I was a song writer–an avid one. I played piano and guitar and bass and I was bent on singing in a band. I idolized people like this:

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Anyone Know Them? I Sure The Fuck Don’t

One day I sat and I stared across the street. One man sat out every afternoon on the curb in front of his Half-way House with his cigarette in his mouth and disdain across his brow and his guitar across his lap and his mini amp by his thigh, and he’d play a symphony on his strings. The man was a musical genius. So I listened to him and I pet the cat. And I stared at all the papers of songs I wrote and I thought about the last year and a half and I thought about how horrible school was, how I could never seem to make friends or relate to people or participate in class or act “normal”, how horrible home was–if I could call it that–and I didn’t really understand any of it. I think that’s what scared me the most; I didn’t understand why any of it was happening to me.

I just sort of rolled with the punches without knowing I was rolling with the punches.

Kind of like tumbling down a hill and you get so dizzy during the fall you don’t realize you’ve been spinning until you hit the bottom.

Living was such a chore.

So I wondered, “well, what if I stop living?”

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I wasn’t shocked about the thought nor disturbed. I wasn’t sad, although I think I was crying. I just remember a wave of relief coursing through my veins at the thought of never ever having to see that house again, never ever listening to that bitch all night, never ever dealing with anything ever. And it’s true: the future is blocked in those moments. Everything that could be or should be is hidden, and all you experience is your warped perception of what is. 

But the relief–that’s what I got addicted to. I thought about suicide more and more often and it was like I’d just stuck a needle in my arm and shot up the good stuff.

I’d always been the “weird” kid: having conversations with objects who I gave personalities and daydreaming at least 12 hours out of the day, you know, shit like that. But that’s also when I started toying more with the idea of fiction and suddenly in my head were these characters, ones I developed, ones that weren’t just fictional but a part of me, and they experienced things similar to me. They had their own lives, but we’d talk about the similarities and we’d talk about how good suicide would feel, and we wondered what was on the other side.

Why am I thinking of all this? Because tonight I went out and I had a good time. And whenever I have a good time like that, I get suicidal.

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Sounds contradictory? It very well should.

It’s not that I feel I didn’t “deserve” to have a good time or whatever, nothing obviously depressive like that. But you see, some people have their family and that’s 97% of their social life. Some people have their large groups of friends and that’s 97% of their family. Some people are like me and have neither–and like I said, I’m not complaining. I don’t need a bunch of friends or a bunch of family, it’s not my cup of tea.

However, there are a few people in this world who I instantly connected with, people who became my friends without effort, people who talked to me, who I felt didn’t judge my odd behavior or sense of humor or weird thoughts, they just let me talk and they’d ask me questions and they’d actually be interested in the weird shit I said.

That’s what makes them different, I realized tonight. They don’t judge me on any level. I’ve never feel like they would talk behind my back, I’m never wondering about it, I never feel embarrassed about what I say around them. These are people I’ve known for 7+ years. And tonight with my boyfriend, I went out with the two of them.

Four in a group is like . . .

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. . . to me.

But there wasn’t a moment of anxiety between me and any of them. I suffered some sensory overload in the arcade but that I can always handle.

Out of twenty years of life, I’ve only connected with three people like that. In other words, I’ve only ever made three real friends by myself. One of them drifted away in middle school and we don’t talk anymore. But she was the first person I ever spoke to in school and that was in first grade at the beginning of the class. We were inseparable by break time. Even the teachers were amazed, since, you know, they all thought I was mentally challenged. And now that I think about it, it amazes me how at seven years old I could sniff these people out like dirty laundry.

So whenever we split up, I get incredibly lonely, an inconsolable kind of lonely. It doesn’t make me want friends, but it makes me realize how special those few are to me. They are rare.

It makes me realize there’s a possibility that I may never find those kinds of connections again. Or at least, not for many years.

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I’m not terribly disappointed. I’m not looking for a bunch of connections. It’s just hard to think about sometimes.

In case your wondering, I wasn’t instantly connected with my boyfriend when I first met him. He didn’t know it, but I had a hard ass time talking. It’s a good thing he’s hella good at it.

It’s funny; he’s shorter than I am by a couple inches or something and when we first met I swear to God he was shorter than he is now. I used to swear in junior high and high school I’d never date someone shorter than me–why???? Media???? Stereotypes???? I have no clue!?!?!?–and yet here I am, dating someone shorter than me.

He seems a lot taller now which is weird because we were both adults when we met each other.

At least he was. I was 17.

Or 18?

I don’t know. I think 18.

Then he was 19.

I don’t know.

The fucking point is I feel like we’re the same height. It took a reflection in a window to remind me that we weren’t.

Anyway, I put him through a lot of shit because of my anxiety of people and commitment and closeness and it’s been way over a year since that time and I still feel horrible for it. I always try to make up for it but I don’t think there’s a way I can. I don’t even want to talk about it.

exhaustedOkay, the REAL point is, I’m still struggle to be more open. It’s hard to talk about how I really feel. He can handle my weirdness, which is pertinent, very, very pertinent, but when it comes to feelings I don’t know how to explain them verbally. And if I try it through text message I get offended if he falls asleep or doesn’t answer or something, as if it’s his job to stay awake and listen to my fucking rambles.

It’s not.

I try to be “normal” for him, but I don’t think I’m doing it right. 

I don’t talk about my feelings to the other two, but I have before and it was much easier.

None of this means I don’t love my boyfriend, I love him very much. It’s just hard for me to speak up with people I didn’t instantly connect with from the start.

And that’s why when I was driving home tonight after dropping everyone off I was gripped by that loneliness again, that type of loneliness that reminds you how different you are from so many people, that type of loneliness that isn’t really a result of depression but that could push me into a depression.

So I thought about killing myself. I think about it often, but it’s usually a minor thought.

But tonight was the type of night that could roll into weeks and drive me to a heap on the floor. I thought about driving off the bridge or slamming my car into the other one or stabbing myself and that relief washed over me like a damn good orgasm and that’s what powered me home.

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Sounds sick and twisted.

But the thought of leaving and never having to deal with my differences and disconnects with people again contain more contentment than I’ve ever felt in my life.

I don’t need people. I don’t want friends. But the feeling of connection is so foreign to me and so rare that when I experience it, I don’t want it to leave.

I’m not going to kill myself. But I am going to think about it. And I’m going to listen to the depressing songs and probably cry or something, I don’t know. I’ll be with the characters in my head. And I’m going to like it because it’s a relief to be back in the arms of my oldest, dearest friend.

Anxiety is also my oldest friend but that motherfucker is always tweaked out.

Depression is genuine and calm, however dark or disturbed. Happiness is way too unstable.

It’s a lot of work to stay alive when you’re struggling with yourself. Sometimes thinking about ending that struggle is a logical way of sorting through the chaos of your mind.

I’m not scared of my suicidal thoughts.

They’ve been my friends since I first connected with them. I didn’t even have to try hard to get them to like me.