and I know that’s selfish love…
I am not a stranger to the dark. I am not a stranger to negative self thoughts – but I’ve learned to drown those thoughts out.
Meds have been a key asset along my journey to get me to where I am today. They didn’t work the first time, the second time, or the third time, but for me, the fourth time’s the charm. What has made them successful this time: is having a psychiatrist monitor them rather than my family doctor – obviously different kinds, dosages and combinations of mood stabilizers, antipsychotics and anti depressants – learning at what times to take them – and fighting through the side effect period and then fighting the urge to go off them once they started working when I finally felt their effects (because maybe, just maybe, this time I was feeling better for another reason and didn’t need them).
I’ve come to realize that they may just be a part of my life. Sometimes when I look at my counter in my bathroom the amount of pill bottles looks….scary. I worry if people will judge me when they see them. At one point there was 8 different bottles. That was a lot. Now, the number is much lower than that, but I guess it doesn’t matter. Heck they are working.
Meds aren’t the only puzzle piece that has been put in place. I’ve learned that my lifestyle and routines play an important role in the whole picture. Being sure to make time to exercise, and for me that’s running, is almost more important than just popping pills 🙂 Joking. I take my medications very serious and know their importance. Meds have allowed me to get to a spot where I can run again. Running has been my saving grace so many times. It makes me feel whole. It makes me happy. It’s as simple as that. It’s a part of me. Running is a way to spend time thinking, or sometimes not thinking. Actually sometimes I can be seen talking to myself. Which leads me to my next point…
Not. Giving. A. Fuck.
Now I’m sure this last point has to do with getting older and realizing that it’s probably one of the best mottos one can have. I’m not saying I walk around being an inconsiderate human, but not giving a fuck has gotten me through some tough and challenging times.
Like the time I broke down at work, before the bell even rang. I knew I wouldn’t be able to make it through the day. I needed help. This was my most recent major breaking point. So I didn’t give one fuck and went across the hall ( I’m a teacher) and into the classroom of the teacher nearest to me and said I need your help. This lead into a series of time off work and many appointments but I didn’t care. The next day I was driving and had to pull over onto the side of the road. I sat there crying, not knowing what to do, utterly lost and confused and scared. I called someone and confided in them how lost I was and how much I knew I wasn’t ok. They took me to CMHA and to my family doctor and as I walked into each one of those buildings I had to say to myself, now is the time to not give a fuck about where you are or who may see you and lay it out on the line. Put it all out there so that you can get what you need. And so began my journey of truly accessing the resources in my community and advocating for myself. I’m so grateful for that person who put themselves in what I can only assume was an uncomfortable situation, and made the time to be there for me. If you’re reading this, thank you. I love you.
So choose yourself. Always. First. Forever.