Today is the last ‘official’ day of my staycation, the last of my vacation days. Have I done lots of great things with my time off? No! Have I wasted them? I don’t truly think so.
Barring yesterday when I really, quite desperately, needed sleep after staying up most of the night to watch Avengers Endgame (seriously, if you are a fan of incredible movies, go and see it at least once), I have stayed up a little later than normal and woken up with a slightly later alarm in the mornings.
Right now I am catching up on episodes of Lucifer. Being a massive fan of Neil Gaiman, Lucifer Morningstar was another great creation of his, and I am eager to watch episodes I previously missed (there are too many shows and not enough hours in the year to watch all of them) before the new season drops on May 8th (yep, it’s been announced).
Anyway, none of the above is what I wanted to write about. I am happy that I took some time off work. I needed a mental break. Don’t get me wrong, not a break from work, so much as a break from life.
As I sit here on my very squishy sofa, the world carries on around me. Outside the gardener has just been mowing the lawn (that makes it sound really flashy here, he’s hired by the building to maintain our tiny communal garden). My next door neighbour is bringing in her bins, the roll of the wheels on gravel is pretty loud. The sky is a mess of grey, pale blue and big white clouds. A few cars have gone by, but overall it’s rather quiet.
If I am being honest I am tired. Every single day I put on this smile, laugh at jokes (that I occasionally mentally cringe at) and then I get home and curl in on myself.
Work is great, I cannot repeat that enough, it really is, but so much time around people putting on this facade which hides the way I really feel is getting so much more difficult.
One of the biggest reasons why I don’t mention where I work is because I am honest and on here I feel as though I can reveal a lot more of myself than I would if I weren’t keeping myself somewhat anonymous. And right now I am confiding that I am working with people who also suffer from anxiety issues. It’s an epidemic. And as awful as it is, sometimes I wish that anxiety were my only issue.
I have a complex mental history, it affects so many aspects of my life that I have lost count. I have anxiety, recurrent depression, social anxiety, a history of bulimia and a depressive disorder. Yes, I have this in writing, but no, this does not make me mental!
I feel the pain of everyone and anyone who goes through what I do on a daily basis, it’s painful, it’s never ending and it’s hard work. Pasting a smile on, being ‘happy’ when inside you feel like you’re dying just a little bit, and pretending that you don’t ache every moment.
The issues I have with my weight are just another burden to bear, and it really doesn’t help that the medication I take to sort out some of these problems (or at least make them just a tiny bit more bearable) also makes the battle harder. Did you know that most anti-depressants have an effect on weight (and not usually in a positive way)? Well, newsflash, they do. Now, if only they could invent an anti-depressant that aided in weight loss…Hear that? What do you think?
This post was actually harder to write than I thought. I am always honest about my mental health issues and the battle that I have been fighting since I before I turned 12 <— that bit right there is a whole other story that I might tell at some point when I am feeling ready.
I know that it was a mess of feelings, but that’s how my brain works – yes, it is messy up there.
If you are struggling, talk. If you need someone to listen don’t ever be afraid to reach out. I know that people are more upfront and honest about mental health issues, but that doesn’t mean the stigma has completely vanished, it’s still there in the little comments, the “just smile”, the “you’ve got nothing to be depressed about” and probably the worst one “just get over it”. Together we are strong and we will get through. And right now I am struggling, but I will get through. My staycation has been helping, sort of!
Of course, if you want to take a trip to the temporary light side after reading about the reality of my life…there’s always…