Tosha Maaks is a Mental Health Advocate who uses her fashion sense to keep herself feeling her best. She shares those self-care tips you so you can follow her lead while she raises awareness on mental health issues.
I always craved the nightlife. However I was vastly over weight for a majority of my life, meaning I was never very good at being a part of it. As I now know, having bipolar is something that means I shouldn't allow for the nightlife much in my life anyhow; it was fall and the bipolar delusions were strong and I was struggling very hard internally with the paranoid thoughts that flooded my mind day in and day out. The thought of being talked about behind my back, and people not liking me, was never far from my mind. I never felt like I fit in, it didn't' matter if I was at one of the kid's football games or at work at the strip club I felt like no one liked me. I never stayed at a job for much longer than six months because I would get overwhelmed with the feelings that my coworkers were out to get me. The struggle had me in full force by 2008 when I had lost all the weight after my gastric bypass surgery.
The 3 Legged Stool!
I often find myself putting other people I meet who have bipolar disorder into two clearly different categories. Either they are like myself and they are manic, or they tend to have depression more of the time. For me, if I have depression, it is normally mixed in with feelings of regret of what has happened in the past. I try hard to not dwell on the past.
My Struggle With Bipolar Disorder
I find that I often have very typical symptoms of bipolar disorder when I read articles about what others have experienced. Like for instance, even though I have been married since I was 19, I still have had moments of hypersexuality. I actually worked for a while in a strip club when I first lost weight after bariatric surgery. I always loved the idea of working in a club and loved the nightlife and it seemed like the thing to do at the time. I loved the attention I was getting from men and I believed I was fulfilling something within me.
Toxic People Can Be as Bad as Cancer and It Has got to Go!
“Smile and the world smiles with you if you frown you frown alone” a simple saying that I was told my whole life. I had no clue what this saying truly meant when I was a freshman writing it on the board for the quote of the day because the teacher had forgotten to write a quote yet I felt the board needed her daily quote and since I wasn’t particularly smart that was the only thing I could come up with. It was a saying my mom would say to me when I would walk around the house saying, “I’m bored” and whine and cry because I wanted something to do. Not so different than I do now, meaning I still have ADHD and bipolar disorder and I still get really bored and whine and cry about it, only I am a grown up now. Today someone told me the same quote as I laughed about the fact that my smile is authentic, and I often keep a smile on my face these days even when facing depression.
The Hold of The Fear of Rejection!
Self-confidence, where does it come from? My theory is it comes from within. I haven’t been able to find my own inner self-confidence in a long while now. I have had glimpses of it, here and there. Every now and then I will have a fleeting moment where I will not think that every one that is in a room is laughing at me, judging my every move. However, for the most part, I lack the self-confidence I desire in my life.
I spend so much time not confident in who I am. I often think others are judging me by my appearance or because they don’t like the person I am. I have started to try to remember the times that I did feel good about myself, and I try to remember what I felt like in that instance, so that I can start to crave feeling like that so often, I can begin to make a habit of it.
The Challenge of Bipolar Delusions
Being bipolar can be challenging. For me it’s partly because my mind refuses to shut off. When I’m not doing much and just being around the house, I find myself doing the one thing that makes most people break into anxiety: overthinking. It’s one of the quickest ways to find yourself in depression.
Bipolar Disorder and Friendships
Bipolar disorder can have many co-occurring diagnoses. Today I am going to discuss just two of my co-occurring diagnoses and give you an example of each of them and how they would have affected my friendships, if I wasn’t open about having bipolar disorder with my friends. I think you will agree with me that the fact that I am open about having bipolar disorder with my close friends is something that has benefited me on my path to recovery for mental health.