I’ve not been myself lately, and it’s incredibly scary. I have gotten bad again. I was doing so good and then everything fell apart. Anything that could go wrong, did. My grades have slipped, and I haven’t had the motivation to even take a shower in days. I oversleep and miss my classes. and am late to work all the time. I don’t want to do anything except sleep. I used to be an honor student and all I want to do is drop out of college, to just sleep. It sounds ridiculous, but it’s the truth. It’s gotten so bad, that it’s dangerous for me to be alone. October 21, I attempted to take my own life. I was ready to die; still am because today November 1, I attempted to take my life again. I haven’t felt this low in about a year and I’m stuck on what to do. I’m drowning in sadness every time I wake up, and every second I spend breathing. I’m suffocating, and the pain in my heart is excruciating. No one around me seems to be phased because they have seen me like this before, just another “episode”, I guess. I have begged God every single night, not to wake me up the next morning. I have talked to him, and, asked him to give me strength to do simple things like get out of bed, brush my teeth, brush my hair, change my clothes, and do my homework. I feel like a burden to every single person I encounter. I’ve been down this road before and I came out on top, yet, here I am again, at the lowest point in my life. My health is deteriorating. I’m sick all the time, and I don’t seem to be getting better. I just want to get back to being able to do simple things without it taking everything out of me. I wrote this blog as an update and an apology. I’m very sorry to those of you who read my blog, and who I’ve let down with this update. Please don’t lose faith in me and continue to read my blog and gain encouragement as I continue to write this blog and gain encouragement. Those of you who are religious, please keep me in your prayers, and those of you who aren’t keep me in your thoughts. I’m struggling so bad right now, and the only thing on my mind, at this moment, is death. I just need peace.
Everyone dealing with mental illness, deals with it differently. I, personally, have had a hard time coping with having one since I was diagnosed four years ago. I want to say I’m sorry for having an illness. I know I preach that you shouldn’t be ashamed to have a mental illness because you shouldn’t, and I know that, yet I find myself becoming a burden to people, and apologizing for it. I find myself getting annoyed at myself just for breathing. To be honest, I’m angry that I have a mental illness. It has brought nothing but darkness, pain, and negativity into my life. My people, the people I thought would be in my life forever, aren’t in my life anymore because they couldn’t take it. They couldn’t take the pain I was causing them. They couldn’t take the baggage I acquired because it was just too much. I have never been so alone in my entire life. Before, I only “felt” like I was alone because I couldn’t see that I had plenty of people around me who genuinely made me a priority to be in their lives. Now, I really am alone because everyone left.
Now, that I have gotten better, they’re gone. They can’t see how sorry I am for being the way that I am. They won’t hear me out long enough for me to apologize to because they simply don’t care, and that is there personal right to leave and not care. I run off everyone who comes in my direction because they can’t handle mental illness. My illness has broken down my body so much that I am everything but healthy. Medical bills add up, and insurance can only pay for so much. My poor parents don’t know what to do. I’ve become so unhealthy and sick that I feel like I’m dying. My medicine helps a lot, but it does make me feel numb to anything with emotion. I don’t cry when I’m on my medicine, even if I want to. But when I miss a dose or 4, then I’m on the brink of death again. You can’t win for losing. To my sorority sisters— the more you get to know me, the more you will find out how toxic and a burden I can be. I don’t know what more I can do to give my self-reassurance that you all won’t leave me, like everyone else did, because it isn’t a guarantee that you won’t. I’ve been down this road before.
My illness has made me a survivor, but it also made me a victim, and I’ll never forget that. I don’t know who to be mad at, so I take my anger out on myself, whether that be with self-harm, or negative comments towards myself. I miss the person I was before I was sick. I miss her so much. I would give anything to be my old self, have my old life back, and have my people back, but that’s not how life works, unfortunately. I will be on medicine for the rest of my life, and that is something I am trying to cope with. I know having mental illness is a handful, just like having cancer is a handful, but It still isn’t an ideal situation for anyone. I have had to come to terms with the fact that I will never be able to live a medicine free, happy and healthy life. I will always be the outcast because of my illness. This is an open letter to my mental illness, and with this I say, I hate you, Sincerely Me.
Monday, September 24, 2018 I become a part of a national sisterhood, Kappa Delta sorority of the Delta Pi Chapter. Just a week prior to me becoming a new member of KD, I was becoming suicidal again, and almost relapsed with self-harm after being 8 months clean. I was feeling very, very, very alone. I had been missing my daily dosage of my meds, so I was naturally feeling terrible. I wasn’t doing my homework, I was slacking on my blog, and I didn’t talk to anyone, except my parents. Although I am much better than I was a year ago, I still felt extremely low, and unhappy. It was even becoming dangerous for me to be alone.
The weekend I became a new member, I was surrounded by girls who I didn’t know from Eve. I was genuinely scared to go into sorority recruitment alone because I was afraid I would be rejected, and continue to feel not wanted. Everyone had a best friend they went into recruitment with, and of course, I was alone. That is until the weekend went by. I met the girls in my recruitment group, and I met the different girls in the different chapters (sororities). I went to the Kappa Delta house, still feeling nervous I would get rejected, and instantly my heart grew times ten. These, now, sweet sisters of mine welcomed me without even knowing me, open minds and open hearts. I walked into the house, and had a genuine vibe coming from these ladies. I was so scared I wouldn’t get invited back to their house because I had poured my heart out to one of the girls and cried to her about everything I was going through and why I wanted to join a sorority. I mean, after all, the reason I wanted to be in a sorority was so I could find a family away from my family, and people who will hold me when I can’t even stand up, and I was just terrified that my story would scare them off, but God, oh look at God. Bcause only He knew the joy that was coming my way.
The day I received my bid from Kappa Delta, was truly one of the best, emotional, breathtaking days of my life because I knew these girls would be the reason I wanted to live, and boy was I right. My sisters have known me since the 21st of September, and it is now only the 27th of September, and they are already my best friends. They are my purpose for living. They are the reason I will continue to go on, even when I don’t want to. These girls just don’t understand how much of an impact they have had on me in the past week. They have showered me with love, reassurance, and acceptance, everything I have been yearning for. They are my family away from my family, they are my people, and I will love them until I take my last breath. Kappa Delta forever.
Thank you guys for being so patient with me while I have been away, but I am coming back with some good news that I am so excited to share. I have been selected to be the campus representative for my school on behalf of the Buddy Project, a mental health organization that raises awareness for mental illness and suicide prevention.
Different students from different schools whether it be college, middle, or high school apply to be the representative for their school, and there is usually only one per Institution, and I applied for my college and was selected as the rep for my school. I cannot explain my excitement for this opportunity. I get to help raise awareness to my campus and its students on mental health/illness, something that is not talked about at my school, or any school for that matter. I can do fundraisers, talks, panels, activities, health fairs, or anything really that benefits The Buddy Project and mental illness.
Since I have gotten better throughout my recovery process, I have discovered a love for helping those who are also struggling with mental illness like I am. I find every opportunity to advocate for mental health and it makes me extremely happy when I get to respectfully educate others on the severity and importance of mental illness. I’ve not only educated strangers, but family and friends too. This is something I am so proud to be apart of and wanted to share with you as one of my first blogs back from my short break. If you want to know more about this opportunity, please feel free to contact me if you want to apply to be a rep for your school or campus. Applications close in mid-August, I believe.
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Picture rights to The Buddy Project.
Hey guys, its been a while since I’ve blogged. I’ve bit off more than I can chew going into my sophomore year of college, financially. I just had a breakdown and thought about relapsing. I just sat in silence, numb. Wanting to take something sharp to my skin. I’ve been doing so good since I was first diagnosed with my mental illness 4 years ago. I have come a long way, and for me to break down like I just did is scary. This is only an update, as I will have my blog posts up running again, regularly, soon. I am announcing I’m officially starting the process of writing my memoir. Crazy, right?! I couldn’t believe it either. I am asking a huge favor of you guys if you could donate $5 each, if you can, to help pay for my memoir from anyone and everyone who can, and I will donate half of that to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. I am doing this to not only help myself by publishing my story, hardships and triumphs with mental illness as a black woman, but to donate to the AFSP because many people with mental illness don’t believe they can do some of the stuff I’m blessed to be able to do, like go to a post secondary school because of fear of being judged and not enough funds to pay for it, so if you can, it would mean the world, if not, that is okay too, just spread the word! My paypal username will be listed below if you’d like to donate, and I will add a special thanks to you in my memoir.
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Paypal username: firstname.lastname@example.org
Many of us in the mental illness community can trace our “story” from the very beginnings, and many stories start when we were teenagers. In my own experience when I was a teenager, I never wanted people to know, or to tell my story. I wonder all the time what would have happened if had gotten help as a teenager? That is what makes Taylor’s story— a young woman from Knoxville, Tennessee— all the more amazing. At age nineteen Taylor has already been through so much, and yet she was willing the be featured on the Bipolar Writer blog, this is Taylor’s story. One we can all learn a few things from her journey.
(Taylor’s blog) https://taysblog2017.com/
Taylor’s Interview Feature
When a journey begins, it is usually at the point where life and mental illness starts crashing into one another. Taylor’s journey begins four years ago in 2014, with a…
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Having a mental illness can take a toll on, not only your mental health, but your physical health and personal hygiene. For me, when I was in the beginning of my diagnosis of my mental illness, I did not take good care of myself at all, I had poor hygiene. It was almost like I was a little kid again, having my mom and dad take care of me. A lot of people who don’t gave mental illness see people that do have mental illness, as lazy when they don’t keep up with themselves, and that isn’t the case at all. When you have a mental illness, all sense of self care and upkeep goes out of the window. We are too busy in our own world filled with our mental illness that we don’t find the time to do what is best for ourselves. Also, Depression, at least from my experience, play a big part in poor hygiene. The upkeep of yourself is another hard task that we just cannot seem to bring ourselves to do. Somethings as simple as taking a shower or brushing our hair feels like an impossible task, so below I conducted a list of self-care tips I personally use to knock the funk off me whenever I have an episode of relapse, and hopefully you will find something you like and can implement it into your routine too!
- Taking hot baths– Taking baths, sometimes with salts, scents, or certain soaps, can relieve stress. Taking a bath can help improve your personal hygiene while relaxing you, that way you are still achieving cleanliness while being relaxed.
- Brushing your hair at least every other day– Sometimes we don’t want to get out of bed to get ready to be productive, and that includes, showering, changing our clothes, brushing our teeth and hair, if anything, keep a brush on your bed side table and brush your hair once every other day, at the least. It can be relaxing, and you got your self-care in for the day
- Getting your nails done– I personally go and get my nails done a lot, to treat myself and make myself feel pretty. When you go to the nail salon, you don’t have to get acrylics or gel. You can simply ask for a cuticle cutback, nail trim, and a healthy clear coating to go on top of your nails to help them grow. Its simple, but goes a long way.
- Cleaning you room– Cleaning your room when you have Depression can seem like a stretch, but for me it is a stress reliever. I am a neat freak, and living in a room that is in disarray further triggers my depression, so tidying up can relieve some of that anxiety and depression.
- Change your clothes everyday– I admit, I fall victim to not changing my clothes at least once a day when I’m in a depression rut because I usually just stay in bed not feeling like I need to change clothes. But even if you decide to stay in bed for the next two days, changing your clothes can keep you clean and make you feel like you’ve accomplished even the simplest of tasks.
- Burn your favorite candle– Personally, I love candles because they provide my favorite smells and make me feel like I am in a relaxed, controlled environment. Burning your favorite smells can increase your mood more than you think, try it.
- Listen to your favorite playlist– Listening to your favorite type of music, sung by your favorite artists can make you feel so much better. I know whenever I am sad or upset, I immediately put on my Beyoncé playlist to make me feel like I can run the world (pun intended).
- Binge watch your favorite show– I binge watch Law and Order SVU because it is one of my favorite shows and makes me forget about all my problems I have, and gives me a reason to engage in something else other than being sucked in by my mental illness. Binge watching anything that makes you happy is always a plus.
- Sleep in– This is probably my favorite self-care tip because I utilize this one religiously. Sleeping in has a negative connotation because people see it as lazy, but having a mental illness can cause physically fatigue, and a little extra R&R is not going to hurt, it will, in fact, help. Whenever I sleep in, I wake up feeling a little better than if I would have if I ah woken up early.
- Make a small healthy change– I recently made a small healthy change by drinking water 75% of the time, and Dr. Pepper or anything else filled with sugar, 25% of the time. I used to be able to drink a whole 2 liter of Dr. Pepper by myself for two days because I am that obsessed with it, but obviously it wasn’t good for me, causing excess acne, which I didn’t appreciate. Making a healthy change, can trigger a positive, healthy change mentally.
- Call someone you love– I call my parents, mostly my mom at least 4 times a day, no exaggeration. I love talking to my momma because she makes me happy. I am in college away from home, so I am homesick for sure, and calling or facetiming my parents puts me in a better mood, plus that gives me someone to tell my good news to. Calling someone you love relieves stress and emphasizes your love you have for them, increasing the greatness of your day, even slightly.
- Watch a stand-up comedy– I love standup comedy. My favorite standup comedians I love to watch religiously are Kevin Hart, Kat Williams, and Steve Harvey. Whenever I need a good laugh or a want a good laugh, I go to Netflix or YouTube and search for them.
- Blogging- Blogging obviously is something I had to put in here because what would a blog post about positive ways to increase your physical and mental health be without blogging being a part of the list. Blogging allows me to get my thoughts out and help others while helping myself. Reading other blogs helps me in my recovery and my hopes is to do the same for them.
I hope this post gave you some ideas of how to take good care of yourself :). Don’t forget to like, share, and follow, xoxo.
This week is a special week for me, as it marks two years since my last suicide attempt, 2 years since I was deathly under-weight and it almost killing me, and 8 months clean of self-harm. What an earful, but I am grateful. I am grateful that I am still alive today, I am grateful for having the self-control to not continue to hurt myself, and I am grateful for being at a healthy weight. I have accomplished so much since my last suicide attempt. I graduated high school, I am finishing up my first year of college with a week and a half to go, and I started this blog. I have grown as an individual, in the sense that I change the way I see things, the way I see life. When I was in the deep pits of despair, to the point where I thought ending my life would fix everything, I always thought pessimistically. I never saw the bright side to anything, and I never wanted to. I would lose hope at the smallest inconvenience in my life, and based my whole entire mood around that mindset, and no one could change the way I thought. I found a comfort in my sadness, and when I felt a little bit of joy creeping in id shut it out because it wasn’t what I was used to. I wanted to get better, but a part of me didn’t because I was scared of not knowing what that felt like. I had forgotten what actual joy felt like, and I wasn’t biting at the bit to find out. It always gave me anxiety to know that something good could actually happen in my life because it could go wrong at any moment, and in a way, it did. My eyes saw the world as black and white at this moment in my life. I was so convinced that I would be this way forever, and that the only way to end the constant pain and torture of living and breathing everyday was to die.
I relapsed my second month into college. I was doing so well for about 6 months and then something happened in my life, and I just snapped. I was back to my old ways and it felt comforting because that’s all I knew for the past 4 years. When someone self mutilates, there is a release of endorphins that make you feel good and relieved after you hurt yourself, just like crying. I have more scars on my arms and legs than I can count, but thy are a constant reminder that I am in a constant battle with myself and I am here to win. I used to be embarrassed of my body, mostly my arms because people don’t understand why you would do that to yourself, but no longer am I ashamed of what has happened to me. They are only there to remind me to better myself.
I am now at a healthy weight where I can live without my doctors worrying if I’m going to live until the next year because I couldn’t maintain a normal, healthy weight. Two years-ago my weight was so insanely low that I didn’t eat for 24 hours, that it helped enable a collapsed lung. I was stuck in the hospital for 3 days until they could get my lung working a normal rate again. I was not healthy, and I didn’t take the necessary steps to ensure I was health because I obviously didn’t care at the time, but I’m better now, much better. I haven’t had nearly as many suicidal thoughts in two years, I have been clean for 8 months, and I am at an extremely healthy weight. I have my bad days where I feel myself slipping back into old times, but I remind myself, every day, that I am here to stay. Id say I’m thriving right now and I couldn’t be anymore giddy.
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When we think of recovery from a mental illness, we think that we aren’t supposed to relapse or have bad days. Well, I am here to tell you that we do relapse and we do have bad days, and it’s okay. Some days I feel sad. Some days I think about self-harming again whenever the smallest inconvenience happens to me. Some days I want to go to sleep and never wake up again. Some days I get irritable. Some days I forget to take my medicine. And some days I think about killing myself. I have these thoughts and emotions, and I think I’m not supposed to, and that I’m possibly going down that dark road again. I’ll be doing so well for weeks and then something small or big happens to me that I don’t like, and I feel like relapsing into the old person I used to be. I get scared of myself sometimes because I’m afraid that I’m not strong enough to not act upon those feelings. I just assumed that I’m supposed to have nothing but good days throughout my road to recovery when in fact, I’m supposed to have bad days, so I can appreciate and recognize the good ones.
Having a moment of relapse into your old ways doesn’t make you weak or invalidate all the progress you’ve made thus far. It doesn’t mean you stop trying to become better just because you had a moment of darkness. I used to beat myself up if I relapsed by self-harming, or going off on everyone who came near me because I was irritable because I didn’t take my medicine because I saw that as all my hard work going down the drain, and I saw myself never getting better because I had one minor setback.
These last few months, for example, have been extremely hard for me for various reasons, big and small. I get into arguments with different family members, and it leaves me so angry that I wanted to die. Now, that doesn’t mean that I actually wanted to hurt myself or die because I am doing better, and I am not the same suicidal person I was months ago. I am having a minor setback, yes minor. Some days I get so mad because I argue with them over little stuff and I take it hard and I think I’m failing, but I am actually happier, than I have been in the past four years, because I am getting better, and these past few months don’t define my whole recovery and treatment process.
If you have relapsed in any way while in the process of getting healthy and happy again, I am here to let you know that that means absolutely nothing. Relapse means recovery, and you can’t heal and become a better version of you if you don’t have something to compare the good days to. If all you see is good days and no bad days, then the good days aren’t going to feel as rewarding. I promise it is okay to feel not okay sometimes. It is all a part of our healing process, and that is something I have to remind myself of every single day.
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