Mentally Speaking

So a few months ago (I say a few months ago but in reality it was July last year, oops) I published a post entitled "Why Is Society So Embarrassed of Mental Illness?"and it got such an amazing response. Not only people were starting to spread the word about mental illness and why we shouldn't be embarrassed about, people were starting to share their own experiences. Seriously people that I have known for ages were coming to me and talking about their own experiences and how happy they were that someone was openly talking about mental illness. Since that post I haven't really talked much about mental illness, not because I'm embarrassed or that I've been avoiding the subject, more because I haven't felt the need to talk about it because I had been doing relatively well in the scheme of things.

The reason that I'm bring back the subject of mental health today was because lately in the new there has seemed to be quite a few different celebrities and well known people coming out and saying "hey I've struggled with mental health, lets talk about it." which I freaking LOVE. Nothing will bring an issue more to the spotlight than well known people talking about it. I feel like a lot of the time celebrities are kind of expected to keep their mental health struggles to themselves and present a perfect cover and it's so amazing to see these people suing their status to show that mental illness is somewhat normal and nothing to be ashamed of.

Obviously we can't have a post without me sharing what's been going on with my mental health so I'm going to be completely honest. The last few months have been hard for me, to the point that I made the conscious decision to return to a psychiatrist. Let me prove to you how big of a deal that actually is: I hadn't seen a psychiatrist since I was 14 when I first was forced into admitting that there was something wrong with me. I you don't want to do the mats that is almost five years in between visits, five years of dealing with my head on my own and being very independent about it. So for me to get up and see someone and talk about what is going on my head was me recognizing that I was struggling to deal with this on my own at this point and not wanting to take myself back down the road that I went down when I was younger. I will admit that my mum had to take me to the first session because I was pretty sure that I would back out last minute, and I did try to back out once we got the front door and it was actually locked because people were still at lunch. I took that as my opportunity to be like "okay this is a sign lets go get McDonalds and go home, lets just not worry about this." I am glad that I went there, even if it was only just for two sessions because more than just talking about it was a sign in myself that I was strong enough now to admit when I need help and know when I can't do it on my own anymore.

The main reason that I had decided to go and get some professional help was because I had really gotten myself into a rut that I was finding really bloody difficult to get out of. To the point where I was struggling to even get out of bed- and I hadn't been like that in a really long time. I was unmotivated and I was tired all the time, I was grumpy and irritable and I was just not in a good head space, I was not an pleasurable person to be around. My parents definitely pushed for me to go back because as I work for them it was pretty hard to hide coming into work in the morning and being in a bad mood because you've hardly slept and had to use all your remaining energy just getting out of bed. While I was in my rut I stopped working out because I had no energy so I got myself into such an unfit state, I ate so poorly and because I cook dinner every night Brodie began to eat poorly as well. The house was a mess because I was at a point where I just couldn't bother with it anymore, I was sad all the time and I didn't know how to stop and pull myself out of the huge hole that I had put myself in.

In the past few weeks thing have gotten better. I still have bad days every now and then. Days when I just can't be bothered with anything and anyone and just want to shut myself in my room and pretend I don't exist. In fact this morning started off a bit similar to that, I woke up feeling like utter shit, my head was pounding, I felt like I hadn't slept at all and I had zero motivation to drag myself to work. So I slept for a few more hours. I somehow managed to sleep my bad mood off. It was probably about ten thirty when I got myself up and dressed and headed to work but I was in such a better spot that I was when I had previously woken up a few hours later. Most days are a bit of 'God I could sleep for another few hours' but I mostly manage to push past it and be at work on time. After a few hours I'm fine, I don't notice being tired and I get motivated to not only do work for the business but work on my TAFE work, research and write posts for future blog posts and work on some personal projects that I have in the works. It's getting better, I'm getting better (again.)

On my Facebook page the other day (some shameless self promotion there) I shared an article on ex-bachelorette Sam Frost and how she detailed her struggles with mental illness.There was one thing that stood out to me so much as something thart I resonated with immensely.
The way that Sam dealt with her online bullies and mental health struggles- by not dealing with them at all is exactly how I find myself dealing with things when I just give up and reach that point where I think I can't deal with feeling like that anymore. She said she also shut down her social media accounts in order to deal with the added pressure of a relationship break down on top of her mental health issues and online bullies. This is SUCH a typical Elyssa reaction to not being able to deal with the real world anymore. I use this article to show that even though everyone mental health experience is different and we deal with it in different ways, there's always someone out there famous or not who is going through almost the same thing as you and reacting to it in the same way. SO no matter how you react to your mental health- you aren't doing it wrong, because there is no right or wrong way to deal with your depression.

I encourage everyone- well known or not, to not be afraid of your mental illness and how you deal with it. As long as you're doing the best you can, I salute you.