There are times in these writings when I don’t know if I should actually be as honest as I want to be. There are times when I wonder if the ease of pulling back which benefits my own self is worth the lack of information that I am giving to those who may desperately need it. I don’t think of myself as some sort of messiah, but rather a simple writer that can not only give perspective but often that feeling of understanding between two strangers. I have no interest in changing lives; I have interest in maybe giving a smile or a word of wisdom that helps you.
This blog was designed simply as a way to allow me to put down what I am going through on a electronic paper; I used to try and do it in a journal but my hand always ended up hurting me. This was my way of getting the things I was going though off my chest and keeping me from dwelling on the varied facets of what mental health brings. It has always been mine. Mine to use, mine to share.
But I look back and I realize how many times I haven’t kept to my original purpose. I have intentionally held back the full truth not only of my feelings but the events that are happening not in a bid to cheat anyone but to protect my own self.
One of the things I realized about myself a long time ago was that I take others feelings and absorb them as my own. I take responsibility for other’s emotions and I always allow myself to be literally emotionally slapped by the reactions of those people I am surrounded by. This may be perfectly acceptable when we are talking about our children; it sure doesn’t hurt to know and be aware of what your children are going through. But I am learning it isn’t acceptable in any other way.
I grew up in a household where personal opinion or even personal quests were not only discouraged but not allowed. Intellectual discussions about current events and important historical events were allowed. My mother was a woman who had no idea what to do with the emotions her heart was giving her so she ignored it all. My father, so narsistic that mirrors were on a first name basis with the guy, and a sister who lied constantly in order to get her way created in me a need to be good, responsible, the best of all of them. But it also taught me early on that their personalities were in many ways the norm. And in that norm, a girl with mental illness was often misunderstood.
Since the day I was born I have taken others emotions and blamed myself. I do it when my husband is frustrated or angry despite the fact that I have done nothing wrong. I do it when my father snaps at me for not being whatever it is he believes is correct, and I do it when my sister uses her words and her actions to demean those around her. I listen to those that love me and I hear only my own heart dying. I listen to the complaints and the horrible egos, and believe in my heart that somehow I have done something wrong.
Most people would tell you that my ability to recognize this defect in myself is half the battle. I would tell you it isn’t anything but a thought. I would tell you that like most things in life it isn’t about what you know, but what you do to come to terms with it. It isn’t about the repetitive actions of those we love, but rather the repetitive actions of our own selves.
It is easy to type away on this computer about this truth. And despite the fact that there will be backlash, like always, I am breaking my own rules and talking about it. The last three years of this blog I would probably write this post, but then leave it in my drafts. Out of fear, out of acknowledgement, and out of the very real understanding that those around me have never cared to know about the broken heart I live with.
I live in a world that looks, feels, smells and often hurts in a much different way than it does for others. I know this intuitively, and I know it after years of therapy. I am an introvert; I am overly sensitive; I want to please everyone in my life; and I am all this with the very real knowledge that I do almost everything at the expense of my own self.
I have been very sick lately, and one of the things that happens when I get this sick is my need to kill my own self becomes extremely loud. It overtakes the throwing up, the coughing, the fever, the misery. It becomes strong because I am literally too weak to fight it. Being sick with the flu and being suicidal is easily understood. Being so sick, so tired makes it almost impossible to fight the overwhelming compulsion to die. It is normal for many of us.
I have fought for so long, and with such courage. But there are certain truths that one can’t escape. The acknowledgement that I wrote this post means that my husband will come home and blame me, roll his eyes at me, acknowledge that it is he that is stressed and not getting any while I am sick. I wrote this post knowing that I will pay for it. And I wrote this post after a tough session with my doctor knowing that maybe it is finally time I really did walk away.
Because forgiveness is far down this road. Because the inability for people to see what is right in front of them makes it so easy to be a shadow. Because the words hurt and yet are so easily given. Today my soul sings only a psalm; a dying dirge that won’t change the world, but might just give me the strength to finally build those walls with the strength of hope. The hope of humble acknowledgement that there is an end in sight.