One or the other

As one part of your life seems to improve another spectacularly falls apart… and so I should have expected that when I could finally acknowledge a fairly level mood my physical health would deteriorate. It is as if I have neglected my body whilst focusing on my diseased mind and now it is bombarding me with the ills of a great many years.

However, I also know that mental illness can manifest in physical symptoms. In fact when I was first diagnosed with Chronic depression(incorrectly) it was a diagnosis based mainly on physical symptoms such as; a pain in the lower back, chronic earache with no apparent cause… etc. and so the possibility that these odd physical symptoms I am suffering at the moment are linked to my mental illness is an option I have considered.

I have been suffering what would seem to be a daily allergic reaction which appears as I sleep culminating in both hives and swelling. Anti-histamines clear it eventually but both my GP and I are at a loss as to why this is happening… The really odd thing is that the very same thing happened at almost exactly this time last year leading me to believe that this is perhaps a seasonal allergy though to what I don’t know, I have not heard of anyone having a seasonal allergy as summer turns to autumn. I have also been having chest pains when I breathe; my GP says my breathing sounds fine but he is sending me for an x-ray as a precaution but again he cannot fathom why I would be having chest pains, I sometimes get a tight chest when I have a panic attack but this feeling is entirely different. My stomach feels strange in a way I cannot even begin to describe and my lungs feel heavy…

My anxiety is very high at the moment. I can’t even contemplate answering my phone – the door is being ignored as my heart pounds like I’m running a marathon, I have been avoiding friends and once again my mind screams ‘Please leave me alone, please leave me alone!’ if anyone threatens to approach or acknowledge me. I want isolation and yet it is also the very last thing I want and need.

Usually when my anxiety is high my mood is low and yet as I mentioned before I am for once, fairly level and so it would appear that my anxiety is less connected to my mood than I thought or maybe all of this, the physical symptoms, the detachment of symptoms… etc. just means that I am suppressing my moods causing them to find another outlet which will ultimately be more or just as damaging.

Sometimes I wonder why I analyse and think so much, often to the point of destruction and devastation. Why can’t I just enjoy what seems to be some improvement? Why must I make it into something negative? Perhaps I crave the negativity?

I am so tired of being angry, of being frustrated and so bone tired. Even my changing mood didn’t bring about enough change for me. I am fed up with me.  Someone teach me to be happy…

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Positivity

I have had a rough, tumultuous couple of weeks. My life and the activity in it seems to have gone from zero to a hundred in as many seconds, it is overwhelming and scary but also incredibly good for me and the start of a future full of more than just illness. I know this and yet I am drained, exhausted.

I have finally found a place where I am comfortable talking about the darkest moments of my illness with the people around me; anyone at all in fact – I no longer hide, I have embraced this illness, I have accepted it. Though I still find myself wishing it would disappear and perhaps I always will. However, somewhere along this liberating road of calling on others to lend an ear, a shoulder… etc. I have forgotten that positivity heals, I speak only of the negative, of the bad times and never deign to mention the wonderful, the fulfilling or the downright awesome and so I have resolved to do just that. Whether people are interested or not I am going to start telling them when I feel good; if I can worry them when my hold on sanity seems a little precarious then surely I can declare that I am ok as well – maybe I owe them that. And right now I’m feeling pretty awesome about myself, I am liking who I am, I am proud of my achievements…

These past couple of weeks have taught me about my limitations but they have also shown me that I can push through those limitations; that the things I can do are endless if I take my time, push little by little and keep trying. I have been praised for things that most would see as inconsequential but to me they are gargantuan feats. It warms me immensely to know that these people really get it; that I am not seen as lazy or a failure because one day the idea of a room full of people is too much to bear and that acceptance only bolsters my confidence so that the next day I come in and throw caution to the wind, breaking down a barrage of obstacles.

I must strive to remember when the dark times come that this journey of illness has been a positive one. The positivity of the illness itself is perhaps dubious, but I would not be the person I am today without it… Since seeking help and diagnosis over a year and a half ago I have been met with nothing but kindness, there is nobody in my life at this moment that doesn’t accept my illness and that in itself is a blessing I am certain not all can claim to have. I am surrounded by nothing but positivity and support and I must hold this close when the shadows creep in; I must remember that I am lucky and that I am loved.

Of course, it is one thing knowing what is right and quite another following the right path when it will perhaps cause you to lose something you so crave but nevertheless I follow what I know to be right even though I desire what is wrong. Something wrong was practically thrown down before me recently, something I would have jumped upon a few years ago; perhaps even a few months ago. But it wasn’t right for me, it wouldn’t have made me happy in the long run had it even lasted that long, it isn’t who I am and I am so proud to know that – it has taken a long time to get to know myself this well – it would have been an empty filler to an already empty hollow. It was not as difficult to resist as I imagined it would have been, perhaps I am healing after all. Perhaps I am a fuller version of myself than I was before and maybe when the time comes it will finally be right and good and worth fighting for…

Positivity heals.