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Mental Health is Real

by LaToya Jones about a year ago in anxiety
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My Struggles with Mental Health

I wake with the best intentions to have a great day. After blinking my eyes a few times to the bright morning light I realize that today will be just like yesterday. Just like all the other days. Same ol'.

I have been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder and depression. Appropriate, because I am anxious and depressed almost constantly. The only bright spot in this diagnosis is that I feel exactly like the effects lists say I should. So I believe the diagnosis is correct.

I feel sad, numb, and empty. It is the worst feeling in the world and so hard to put into words. I want to be happy. At least, I want to want to be happy. There is a difference. It feels like my world is upside down. I cannot shake the dull ache in the pit of my stomach, or constant nausea. Diarrhea seems to be a constant as well. And I feel so tired. Drained to be more exact. It’s an exhaustion that is very hard to explain. I want to live as numb as I feel inside. I don’t want to do anything anymore.

Work is the first thing that comes to mind when I think of things that I do not want to do. I must act professionally. I work with other people and I work for other people. I would get fired if I worked without a fake smile plastered across my face. Work always goes exactly as imagined for me; it’s pretty boring. But not wanting to go with everything in me makes me have the most anxiety about going. I have to peel myself off of my bed every morning to make myself go.

My family relationships are what is suffering from my mental health struggles. I am incapable of answering phone calls and texts, leaving my family feeling alienated. I know this to be true because they tell me all the time. I feel that I cannot be fake with them like I can with people at work because they know me too well. So I avoid them altogether. I miss my family. It’s so weird to know they are there yet I feel like I’m so far away from them. I wish I were “normal” like they were, and that I could find joy in everything. My joy is gone.

My relationships with my friends are non-existent at this point. I don’t have the strength to put forth the effort it takes to sustain a familial relationship, much less a friendship. I have really good friends too. They are so understanding of what I’m going through. As much as I hate to admit it, I appreciate their “well check” texts. They let me know they’re thinking of me and praying for me during my struggles. Even though I feel alone, I know that I am not.

Will I ever have peace? I can’t help but wonder? I am the queen of pessimistic thoughts these days. I miss the feeling of peace in my soul. I miss appreciating the simple things, like the blue tone of the sky and enjoying the smell of freshly cut grass. I miss laughing while watching children play. I miss the things I used to love to do. I no longer find pleasure in reading, shopping, or writing. I feel like my existence is just a big waste of space.

Having dealt with depression since I was a teenager, I know what does help bring me out of the slumps. The sun and its light help. I like to sit outside in the sunlight as its rays wash over me, as I pretend I’m being washed in its light. I wouldn’t make it without my medicine. Medication can be controversial but I don’t care. It helps me. I know that I wouldn’t have the focus to try the things that help me feel better without medication. My faith is everything to me. If I weren’t a Christian, I wouldn’t still be here on this earth. That’s a fact. Exercise does help me feel better, as recommended by my therapist. The endorphins it produces help tremendously. Therapy helps me as well so I keep my therapist and psychiatrist on speed dial. Knowing that they are just a call away does put me at ease. Music helps take my mind off my sadness and inability to truly live. It provides a type of white noise for me. I can enjoy it without thinking or effort.

My life is hard. Mental health is real.

anxiety

About the author

LaToya Jones

*Mom x1, Aunt x2, Dogmom x2

*Writing to inspire

*Committed to refining my craft

*Follow my blog "Dare to Dream" at latoyanicolejones.com

*Follow my IG @authoresslatoyanicole

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