Nothing to be ashamed

When Chester died, I wrote a lot about the stigmatism surrounding mental illness. How it is very scary to openly talk about having a mental illness. That talking about it is like having the plague.

Seriously, I am still scared to openly talk about my illness because so many people have made it a joke. I have seen a lot of people who experience nervousness over something claim that they have an anxiety disorder However, after whatever makes them nervous, they no longer have a mental illness.

It is like having an anxiety disorder is something to joke about. It makes those of us who really have it afraid to come out with what is really going on.

There is also this type of stigmatism that if you have a mental illness you should be ashamed.. that you’re seeking attention or playing the victim.

We live in a world where it is so hard to have a mental disorder. I have anxiety disorder, panic attacks and mild depression. I have nothing to be ashamed of. I am living with this and I am living with it my way. Why should I feel ashamed about it??? Seriously? Why should any of us feel ashamed about what is going on iside of our head. When you have a heart issue, your heart is sick. No one makes you feel ashamed of that. The brain is an organ. It can be sick like any other organ in your body.

Don’t be ashamed of it. Own it. You have a mental illness. And that is okay. If you’re on medication… THAT IS OKAY. Seriously. taking medication for your mental illness is brave. Because you had the courage to seek help. To get help. There are so many who have not been able to drum up the courage to ask for help.
When Chester died, many of those who knew him, came to the forefront to speak out for mental illness. To break the stigmatim. I think that the more that we talk about it, the more it will be accepted as normal. That it is nothing to be ashamed about. Because it’s not.

Open up. Tell me your story. Tell me what makes you overthink. Tell me what your anxious about. Because I am here. I will always be here. As a listening friend. As someone who shares your story. Who understands what it is like to have a mental illness. Who knows what it is like to be made ashamed of my illness. To know what it is like. So tell me your story.

Rain and Axiety

Now I can only talk for myself.

And I know I say this over and over

Only for the fact I don’t want anyone to feel like I am trying to talk for anyone other than myself. We are apparently in a world where everyone is very sensitive to what is written or said. Sarcasm and jokes are a thing of the past. Everyone seems to take everything so literal.

But I’m getting off topic.

This post is about something in regards to anxiety. and driving. and how it makes me anxious.

And here’s the thing. I am always anxious when I am driving. Not because I am a bad driver. It’s not me that I am worried about. NO!!! it is the other drivers. The ones who don’t take in to count the conditions of the road or their car. Because too many big vehicles are deciding it is okay to take a sharp curve at a fast speed. Faster than the curve sign suggests. Because they’re obviously in a hurry. Because obviously the place they’re trying to get to won’t be there if they don’t speed. And those are the cars that over calculate or under estimate their car and the curve. Big cars are top heavy if you’re going to fast on a curve…you will tip over.

But I am always anxious because I was in a wreck. On a sunny morning. At a stop light. Because a 20 year old…not even legal to drink…was drunk and high on multiple drugs and off of his seizure medication at 8 in the morning. Seriously! 8 AM. Like how or why would you be that wasted first thing in the morning.

Again I am off topic. This is about the rain. “It can’t rain all the time” But when it does.. I hate. I mean absolutely HATE driving in the rain. It seems like (maybe just in my town) that the crazy’s all flock to the road ways in the rain. And they cannot drive. They wait til the last minute to stop behind you, they are doing running stops. I mean the whole thing makes me completely anxious.

I don’t like going out in the rain. And it has nothing to do with the rain itself. Its the driving. And if I do have to go out…. I refuse to take my kids with me if I can. The roads when wet can be slippery especially in winter. So why would I sanely put my kids in the car with crazy people. The wrecks total triple during rain. So I feel like I would be putting them at a bigger risk by driving them unnecessarily in the rain.

Now that doesn’t mean I don’t take them to school or the doctor in the rain. That’s just crazy. I mean if I want to run to the store because I want to bake a cake… I won’t take them with me. It’s also because….HELLO it is still winter and the rain is cold. We have dealt with enough sickness and a cold rain is just calling for another cold. Nope I will just let them stay home with their daddy while I brave the stupid.

Speaking of which. When it rains….Wal-Mart gets busier… WHY???

Let me know what you think in the comments.

And as always….thank you all for letting me vent

Pretending

I have said before that my anxiety will never going completely away. Instead, I can learn how to control it so that I can manage things better. But getting to that place will be a journey.

I cannot reach my destination by pretending that my darkness never existed. I have to accept the things I have been thru. I have to forgive those who that have caused some of my darkness. I have to work thru the darkness so that I can be better.

I want to help others. Because I have gone thru this journey pretty much all by myself. So if I can help others get to their destination a little faster than I am then I feel like I am doing a good job. I will feel like maybe I am helping.

Because lets be honest. I have a low self esteem. So I am pretty hard on myself. But the one good thing about me that I can never take from myself is that I will help anyone and everyone around me. And I feel like I am in this fight so I can help others with their fight.

Mental illness is not an easy fight to deal with. We are not only fighting our own minds but we’re fighting the world around us. I find that there are some who are struggling with their fight because they pretend that their darkness never existed. That maybe if they ignore what they’ve been through they will get better faster. But that only causes more problems.

Fan  letter

It’s time for yet another fan letter. This time its to a female artist who has used her star power to give those with mental illness a voice….


Dear Demi Lovato,

I started a blog because I suffer from anxiety disorder and sometimes battle minor bouts of depression. The death of Chester Bennington inspired me to get my voice out there to fight the stigma surrounding mental illness. But it is your strength, your openness and your willpower that inspire me to keep pushing.

I watched your documentary and I must say that I was in awe over your transparency. Please don’t take that the wrong way. A lot of people tend to take a lot of what I say in a negative manner. I’m not sure why. What I mean is that you were so open and honest. You were blunt.  You allowed fans to see your struggles for what they truly are. You didn’t sugar coat anything. Anyone watching got to see mental illness for what it really is. And I applaud you. Mental illness has never been in the front as it was in your documentary. Which is amazing. Because the world has placed such a stigma on even the word mental illness let alone anyone who has mental illness.

You are more than just an artist. you are a role model. You are a voice for those who cannot mutter a sound. You stand tall and you stand proud. If  I can be anything like you… I would be honored.

Signed,

An anxious fan

Recovery 

I have learned that recovery means different things to different people. I cannot speak for anyone but myself. So here is what recovery means to me.

Recovery means not freaking out all the time.

Recovery means less panic attacks.

Recover means not overthinking as much.

Now I am not unrealistic. I have been a sufferer of anxiety disorder for over 10 years and I probably need professional help. Although I am constantly striving for recover, I know I will always battle anxiety.

My brother over came anxiety, but he is not me. He doesn’t have vivid dreams like I do. He doesn’t dream at all. I have such strong vivid dreams that I remember every detail for weeks. Sometimes I wake up crying from them. My brother doesn’t think as much as I do. i’m not saying he’s dumb. He is really smart actually. What I am referring to is that he can shut his mind off when he needs to, he doesn’t over think anything. I, however, blow every single thing out or proportion.

Recover means always having the will and strength to fight this battle!

What does recovery mean to you?

Fan letter: Dear Chester

 

I looked up journal prompts and some that may help with your mental health. One was to write a fan letter and you don’t actually have to send it. But if there is a certain celebrity that you relate to, one who has helped you thru a difficult time, writing your fan letter may help you to understand why they’re so important to you. So today… I am writing one to someone who is sadly no longer with us…..

Dear Chester Bennington,

It has been a little over 5 months since you left us. And I am pretty sure I speak for may fans when I say missing you hasn’t gotten any easier. I hope that you’re out there somewhere safe, somewhere warm… somewhere your demons can no longer torment you. And I hope you know how loved you are and always will be.

I want to thank you for always fighting for mental health. You laid out all of your problems in your songs and millions of fans, including myself, related to everything that you said. Thank you for being a voice for us when we didn’t feel like we had one.

There are way to many songs for me to list that spoke to me. Spoke to my soul and spoke me out of my anxiety. Helped me crawl my way out of depression. Your songs were my go to for my mental state. There is always a song in your library of genius that held some sort of meaning for me.

I can never say enough for what you meant to me… and its not just me. There are millions of fans around the world who felt the same way. And it is even worse with the fact that we missed your signs. The signs that you needed a friend. The signs that things were getting bad again. I’m sorry.

I’m sorry we never truly saw all the pain in your eyes. And I know that I never knew you personally….and never would have been more than just a random fan…. a body in a crowd. But I can’t help but wish that maybe I could have done something. anything to help you get thru your pain. To help you keep fighting. But you slipped thru our fingers.

The world lost a legend. The world lost a magnificent voice who helped lonely people like myself every single day. I bought the One More Light Live cd… and I can’t stop listening to it. It is the last Live album you’ll ever have. I feel like if I stop listening to the CD… you’ll truly be gone. And I know that you are in a better place… And I know I am being ‘silly’ being so tore up about a celebrity I never knew. But I feel like turning off the CD will put the final nail in the coffin.. You know? It would make it more real. At least if I keep playing the CD… I can keep hearing your voice. I’m not ready to give that up yet. I know that I can always play any of your cd’s or watch any of the videos on youtube to see you. But it is just something about this Live album that makes it more significant. Mike’s Instagram live listen of it didn’t help either. I feel his pain

You see… I lost a friend that was really close to me 7 years ago. It was unexpected and I thought I was going to see him again in a couple days… those couple of days will never come. I have never taken death very well and I am an overly emotional person. But I have never been to a memorial over a celebrity before…until you Chester.

your love for your family and fans was so strong that I was pulled to go. I felt like I needed to go. And when we all sang One More Light… there wasn’t a dry eye in the room. We care Chester. We care if one more light goes out. And for as long as I live…. I will be shining my light as bright as I can and work as hard as I can to break the stigma.

I applaud your wife Chester. She is one strong woman. When she has all the right to hide from the world and mourn…. she is standing tall with your love and fighting for you fans. She is fighting for mental health. She is fighting for you. She is a role model by all means.

Linkin Park doesn’t know what they’re going to do without you. And part of me feels like it’s not Linkin Park without you in it..without your fabulous voice… without your powerful screams….But I also know that they need to be able to mourn… They need to be able to move on. If they decide to continue as a band…and they should…they’re brothers….I will always support them. And I know that they will honor your memory in the best way possible.

Thank you for everything you did for your fans. All of your songs. All of your smiles.

We will always miss you.

Signed,

Just a fan.

For a reason

Now days, most people has a Netflix account. well I love it.

With the hundreds of things to watch, my husband jokes about how I watch the same things over and over. But there is a reason for it.

For example, I have watched Gilmore Girls at least 5 times all the way thru in the past 2 years. Why? Well, there is nothing scary in any episode. Even the car crash Rory gets in isn’t even all that bad…she fractures her wrist. i can go to sleep watching Gilmore Girls and nothing I hear in my sleep will affect my dreams.

A little back note… I am that type of person who has to go to sleep with the TV on. I cannot do the silence and darkness. It used to be a nightlight and a CD. But now I just put on Netflix and go to bed. The TV cuts off on its own when the Netflix asks that ‘are you still watching’

But watching the same thing over and over….as long as its something you like can be beneficial to your anxiety. I read it somewhere. Probably on facebook. I don’t know.

There is just something therapeutic about knowing what’s going to happen next. Life gets chaotic and having anxiety makes the chaos worse. Having anxiety, the fear of not knowing whats going to happen next is like driving with a blindfold. So watching something where you know how it ends or what happens every minute can give you a sense of calm.

There is also the fact that if I start a new show…I go on a binge. I lose sleep. I don’t want to pause it and then there are some things that just creep into my sleep. Like Sons of Anarchy. I love the show…but cannot watch it before bed. I dream about biker gangs and violence and all sorts of stuff.

I have actually found an article about this so here you go. And let me know what you think about it.

Watching your favorite movies over and over is actually good for you

#Lyrics Last Resort-Papa Roach

 

Cut my life into pieces
This is my last resort
Suffocation
No breathing
Don’t give a fuck if I cut my arm, bleeding
This is my last resort
Cut my life into pieces
I’ve reached my last resort
Suffocation, no breathing
Don’t give a fuck if I cut my arm, bleeding
Do you even care if I die bleeding?
Would it be wrong?, would it be right?
If I took my life tonight
Chances are that I might
Mutilation outta sight
And I’m contemplating suicide
‘Cause I’m losing my sight
Losing my mind
Wish somebody would tell me I’m fine
Losing my sight
Losing my mind
Wish somebody would tell me I’m fine
I never realized I was spread too thin
Till it was too late
And I was empty within
Hungry!
Feeding on chaos
And living in sin
Downward spiral where do I begin?
It all started when I lost my mother
No love for myself
And no love for another.
Searching to find a love up on a higher level
Finding nothing but questions and devils
‘Cause I’m losing my sight
Losing my mind
Wish somebody would tell me I’m fine
Losing my sight
Losing my mind
Wish somebody would tell me I’m fine
Nothing’s alright
Nothing is fine
I’m running and I’m crying
I’m crying
I’m crying
I’m crying
I’m crying
I can’t go on living this way
Cut my life into pieces
This is my last resort
Suffocation
No breathing
Don’t give a fuck if I cut my arm, bleeding
Would it be wrong?
Would it be right?
If I took my life tonight
Chances are that I might
Mutilation outta sight
And I’m contemplating suicide
‘Cause I’m losing my sight
Losing my mind
Wish somebody would tell me I’m fine
Losing my sight
Losing my mind
Wish somebody would tell me I’m fine
Nothing’s alright
Nothing is fine
I’m running and I’m crying
I can’t go on living this way
Can’t go on
Living this way
Nothing’s alright
This song takes the perspective of someone who feels frustrated and confused to the point that suicide seems like a valid option…..It is never an option. It is a permanent solution to a temporary problem… That’s something I have heard others say… Suicide doesn’t solve anything. It doesn’t stop the pain. It just transfers that pain to those left behind.
This is a song that helped many people express their darkest thoughts and find a way to overcome their struggles.
I know personally…this is a song that I always find myself coming back to. When I feel like I am at my lowest…when I feel at my worst… this song is something that just allows you to scream. To yell. To just let go of everything. It is a song that you can get lost in.

What scares you 

 

It is good to sometimes just sit back and write things out.  For instance, before I type up a blog post or anything I physically write it out. There is just something about physically putting pen to paper that allows me to plan things out. That way I can read them over before typing and change whatever I need to. Staring at a blank computer screen provides a writers block.

Also, when it comes to things like anxiety or depression, having a journal, or blog, is a great coping mechanism. So today’s topic: What scares you?

Honestly, I am a very scared person. With my anxiety these fears are a thousand times worse. So much so that if I dream about it and it’s scary enough…chances are that I might just wake up crying. I know….pathetic right.

So what scares me…

Spiders. OHMUHGAWD I am terrified of spiders. Especially the big ones. I was bitten by a spider once…a baby… in my bath tub…while I was trying to relax…detoxify… destress..it caused a huge..not so huge. hole in my arm. I thought it was a baby brown recluse…it could have been. I didn’t see the sucker. I have thrown things at them, I have called my husband to kill them. I am that person you see on tv where they freak out. Cannot do spiders at all.

I am terrified of snakes. I don’t care if they’re nonvenomous. Just keep those cold scaly ugly iccky nasty things away from me. Seriously. I have nightmares about snakes. I would die if I seen one in my yard. Which is why I am adamant about keeping the grass mowed and snake repellent out. I am terrified that my kids will get bitten and that I won’t know what type of snake it was. I would die if anything happened to my kids. Which makes me freak out at the fact that my sister and brother have found 2 in their yard…and my sister is friendly to snakes.. she owned one once. just ewww. I was in PetSmart yesterday…my second time being in there. Totally forgot that my nephew said they have snakes….passed by the snake cage…jumped 10 ft. luckily it was only me and the staff in there.

I am afraid of losing my mom.  I know..it’s a part of life. It will eventually happen. But I just cannot picture my life without my mom. Honestly. It’s always been me and her. She’s always been there. Even when both my brothers left…well moved out. It was me and her..She’s my best friend. Sad right? Not really. I spoil my mom because she spoiled me the best she could. I see her almost everyday and I text her every single day all day long. I’ll be 30 in a few years and I still don’t think I will ever be ready to lose my mom. I have spent many anxious nights crying my eyes out because of this fear. I might actually cry because of this post. ;(

I am scared of car wrecks. I was in one a couple years ago…..it was pretty bad. I was stopped at a light and an idiot hit me and a few other cars going about 45 mph. I found out he had a bunch of drugs in his system at the time. There is something about being rear ended that makes you fearful of stopping at stop lights or stop signs. I am constantly watching my rear view mirror when I am stopped praying that the person coming up behind me will slow down in time. I am also very judgmental about my husbands driving because he doesn’t allow as much stopping distance as I do. So every time I ride with him and he has to stop behind someone…I have a panic attack..every time

I a scared of heights. Always have been. There is just something about being somewhere up high that I fear that there will be some random gust of wind that will make me fall over the edge to my death. Cannot do heights. It doesn’t help that I am clumsy. I used to fall a lot. Like going up stairs, going down stairs, playing, running.

I am afraid of being alone at night. This might stem from being a kid. My oldest brother was supposed to watch me but would leave me home alone…by myself and would come home before mom as supposed to get off. That way he didn’t get in trouble. Then there would be times that he would run around the house in the pitch dark banging on the exterior walls and windows. He’s always had a thing with horror…and I always been afraid…

As a parent…I am scared that something my happen to my girls. I know that my anxiety makes the normal parent worries so much worse. But I would seriously die if anything happened to them. I worry all the time. Am I being a good enough parent? I keep them close in the stores because you hear all those stories about kids being kidnapped. It is awful. We go to a festival every year. And well this year…my youngest is at that stage where she doesn’t want to ride in the stroller the whole time soooo… I bought a monkey on the back. I know so many people judge parents who put their kids on a leash. but come one. She wants to have some freedom but she isn’t at that point where she wants to walk right by my side…she wants to run around. So with the leash…its a backpack with a strap. and its cute. She gets to have her freedom and I get to keep her close by. Since there is usually 6 adults to 4 kids at the festival. I don’t have to make my oldest hold my hand. She is usually with her cousin…ie her best friend. and they’re either in the wagon or walking right in front of us. I do make her hold on the stroller or wagon during the areas that have the biggest crowds.

So… what scares you?

Always

 

When you have a mental illness, you kind of have this unbelievably low self esteem. It really sucks how you see yourself. I’m not as bad on myself as some people I know.

One thing that I am thankful for is my husband. No matter how hard I am on myself, his love never changes. He is the type of person who will say “I will love you no matter how much you hate yourself”  If I remember correctly, and my memory is pretty great hence the constant worrying over what I’ve said or done, he once said that he will not stop fighting until he changes the way I see myself. Sweet right? you would think I would go gaga over that but the pessimist in me says ‘fat chance’ But he hasn’t stopped yet.

And I think him and our kids really keep me grounded when it comes to the anxiety issue. I am pretty sure that it could be a lot worse.

It doesn’t have to be a significant other. I have been very verbal about how I believe it is important to have a person that listens, helps and never judges. That said person can be anyone from your mother, you significant other, or a friend. I’m sure if you took a step back you would find someone that will always love you, no matter how hard you are on yourself.