Self-Esteem

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I am full of doubts and debates. My mind vacillates between confidence and extreme insecurity. Sometimes, mostly when I’m hypomanic, I am REALLY confident. And I mean, through the roof I can accomplish anything, let me buy all the materials to build this monstrous project, let me sign up for a million things that I can be an active part of, I am the most awesome person and I know best, kind of confident. Continue reading “Self-Esteem”

Gratitude

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Today was a very emotional day for me. I took a leap of faith and so far it has only been a positive experience. I just want to say thank you for everyone who is supporting me, has supported me, or will support me. Thank you for your acceptance. Thank you for your openness. Thank you for your presence. Many people came to me privately today to talk about how my story related to them, how they had experienced something similar, how much they would like to be able to talk about this stuff. That’s all I set out to do. All I wanted was for people to know that they’re not alone. I am so grateful for the opportunity to do that. For their willingness to listen. For their bravery to come to me and share in return.

So in summary, thank you. Some of my fears have dissipated and I am more aware than ever of the wonderful gifts that surround me.

 

Surviving as a Student with MI

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School has always stressed me out. I love it, I’m really good at it, but my mental health often gets in the way. I have a BA in English and History and I almost completed a Master’s in Medieval Studies, but I got so depressed that I couldn’t write my final thesis and so I withdrew from the program. In college I withdrew twice, once in my sophomore year and once in my senior year. In both instances I was so depressed and dysfunctional that I couldn’t get my work done. Continue reading “Surviving as a Student with MI”

Dear Universe

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Hello Friends, Family,

I live with mental health issues. I have a personality disorder, I’m Bipolar 2, I have recovered from addiction, and I have tremendous anxiety. I’ve also dealt with loss via two miscarriages in the last few years that really took a toll on my sanity. Following each loss, I was thrown into deep depressions that ended with hospitalizations. I was suicidal and the depression was unwavering. I underwent ECT. (Yes, they still do that.) Then, when things were darkest, I lost my mind and tried to kill myself by breaking my neck. I succeeded in breaking my neck and back, but I survived. This past year I have been recovering and trying to find my path. I am in a great state of mind, I am back at Columbia studying premed so I can go to nursing school, and I’m writing a blog about all of my experiences. The blog is raw, it is dark, and it is intense at times. But I’d like to share it with you all because I believe that mental health is something we should discuss, and if people like me cannot use our voices, then no one will. I am nervous about sharing this because the stigma against mental health in our society is so great. But I also have faith in all of you. You don’t have to read my blog, but if you spend one moment understanding what mental health is and can do to people, that those who suffer are your friends and family, that there is no shame in suffering from a mental disorder, then I’ve done what I wanted to do. Thank you in advance for being the kind, intelligent, understanding people that you are. Don’t be afraid to share your story.

Excessively, Me

“You JUST got out of a mental hospital!”

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I have met more understanding people in my life than I ever expected. I was just talking to another writer the other day about how incredible it is to connect with others. So often when I share the stories of my issues and mental health troubles people respond with their own, “Omg I know! I totally get it! I went through such and such” or “My sibling went through” or “My wife/husband deals with…” and it is like an invisible connection lights up, a webbing we never knew was there. Almost everyone can relate somehow. Continue reading ““You JUST got out of a mental hospital!””

Scars and Tattoos

This post is going to be triggering for some people and will contain very graphic descriptions of self-harm. If this is an issue for you, I recommend caution.

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One of the symptoms most indicative of Borderline Personality Disorder (or Emotion Dysregulation Disorder) is self-harm. It comes in many forms ranging from superficial to injuries requiring medical attention. Self harm isn’t a suicide attempt. It can be hard to understand the difference at first, but let me try to explain. Continue reading “Scars and Tattoos”

Snow Day & Meds

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Today the world is shutting down around me because of the massive snowstorm hitting the East Coast. It means I have the day at home to do whatever I need to do, and I find myself not knowing what that is. I have two midterms next week that I need to be preparing for, so I can try and figure that out for a while. I am tired though. I was exhausted all day yesterday, even through the Adderall. Everyone on campus seems to be sick, so maybe I’m catching something. Or maybe it’s just another dip. I did find myself thinking very dark thoughts yesterday, in flashes that left as fast as they appeared. They’re nothing that I would act on, just thoughts, but disturbing nonetheless. It’s hard to be sitting in math class, trying to follow along, when you can barely keep your eyes open and your brain feels like it’s on a spin cycle. I feel emotionally dizzy: not quite balanced, not quite off balance. Continue reading “Snow Day & Meds”