Things that change

There are things that are going to change over time in a person:

Such as their appearance, status, health, how much money they have, their workplace, employment status, world views…

But things like character and personality are most likely not going to. It’s common, but foolish to judge someone by their external current state of being. It takes a wise person to look beyond the transient.

Manic Sunday Funday

I have several rules when I feel manic. No online shopping, no signing up for things, no making of such decisions that are possibly life altering unless consulted with a family member. Writing a blog post is not barred by any of these above rules, so while my unreliable sense of excitement about writing something lasts, I’ll be writing this post.

It feels like this: it feels like a prophet has come to you from the heavens and has given you your life mission, in this instance, it is writing this post. It could be anything really, like draw a lot of heads, or read until your eyes hurt, or look at job postings hour after hour without needing to rest. None of which, in hindsight, are not really things that should be “goals,” but rather everyday tasks. It feels so exciting to be doing such said task, you forget about everything else. Sometimes this is good if you want to forget all your life’s troubles for a while, but if it does persist, too much excitement for too long, can really do harm.

What are your rules you have for yourself when you are manic (if you have them)?

 

This is… Anxiety

I’m shaking. I’m a mess. Freaked out and paranoid. I feel untethered and insecure. I feel like there is no one for me out there to be a friend. Hell, I don’t have any close friends left. I feel like I did something wrong, but can’t remember it, or that I’m not aware of my mistakes. Something feels so so wrong, I’m slightly dissociating.

I know all these feelings are just feelings and not real (or at least not 100 percent), but it’s uncomfortable to be sitting on it right now.

The days I don’t have class or something obligatory, I feel absolutely useless. I’ve been truly working on my workaholism by not overscheduling. But when I don’t have things to do, I’m in a panic (or I’m drawing, that’s the only thing that calms me down), frantically looking for things to do.

I feel like I’m not enough. People are telling me that I am, in fact, enough. They also tell me if that isn’t going to happen, at least make myself believe I’m enough- but that’s just not possible right now.

Everyone is telling me to get back on my workout regime. I really would have if I could, and if I had the energy. I have trouble staying awake, so I should probably work on that first.

I’ve been looking for a new psych because of my insurance, and I’ve been rejected by three so far. Some of that mentioned that my case was too serious, and they could not take the responsibility. Well, that’s awesome.

What is missing? What am I doing wrong? Why am I still sick? Am I just being impatient? Do I just suck at being an adult? Do I suck at everything I do? I am getting depressed again? Why is life so difficult?

I can’t wait to go to sleep

I wish today was over already. Weekends make me depressed because my life has basically been a weekend away from most of my adult responsibilities in the last year or so, so when you give someone a weekend away from the weekend, then that’s when things get a little stressful. How would you react if someone told you to relax when you are already bloody relaxing? Maybe it’s time to get a job/go back to school you ask? (Not you, reader, but I’m addressing my negative self-talk) Well, I wish I could, but seeing as I’m still struggling physically to get out of bed and do things sometimes, I desperately want to get back to having a life, I cannot. I am still not able to hold down a job, go to school, or be in a relationship of any kind. I’m just not there yet, as they all say. I tried, you know, I tried to go to full time classes and freelance just last month- the result was a horrendous downward spiral into a really dark time.

I draw to keep myself sane these days. I draw every single day. Sometimes, that’s all I can manage. Otherwise, I have no desire to do anything today. I feel pretty much nothing, and things (regardless of how things are realistically) seem futile and pointless. Life seems pointless (no matter what the truth is). I can’t shake these feelings that pull me further and further into another depression, it’s like watching myself fall- in slow motion.

It’s almost 7pm right now, and there are only two more hours until I can go to bed without feeling like I’m wasting my life sleeping. I cannot wait to not be in reality.

I’m an illustrator! How my life took a dramatic turn (once again)

I feel like it has been ages since I last posted. I should say that it was not because of something bad happening, but it was because of something normal. More than just normal, but good. I’ve been very busy.

I have some good news- and it is especially good because it is about my career and where it is headed. I mentioned before that I was struggling quite a bit to find out what I was going to do for the rest of my life, and I know now. Not fully, but well enough to feel pretty secure. And it’s a cliche, but it had been under my nose all along.

It was this one week, you see, when everything changed. When everything clicked. When it felt like it was a sign from the universe, or God or what have you. It was a validating hug that came from all directions.

First, one of my classmates from the art class I was taking reached out to me to ask if I was interested in some illustration work. She knew a friend of a friend who needed illustrators. My illustration so far had been only for my own pleasure, or what someone might describe as “just a hobby, nothing more.” It had been more than that; it was my therapy- it was where I found peace. I constantly sketched, painted, inked- mostly animals, especially my cat. But a year had passed and I found my skills good enough to draw professionally! The guy wanted animal illustrations (in my own style!)-I was stoked because I could not call myself a commercial artist or illustrator until this day, technically. He liked my portfolio on instagram, and we got to work. I was so proud and happy at the thought that I could maybe make money while doing something I love. I took it as a sign.

The same week, I got another commission. It was for several pet portraits. This time, it was similar- I was at church, and I showed my instagram (which is basically my portfolio) filled with ink drawings and watercolor paintings of animals, and she wanted some of my work for her bedroom! I was so excited to have not one, but two projects come up when I least expected it. I usually don’t believe in this stuff, but this was the universe giving me a thumbs up to what I have been doing with my time, and perhaps a sign that I was heading in the right direction.

My therapist was not surprised when these boons came my way. She had the “I told you so” look on her face. She said that she told me before that I was a good artist, and she knew something like this would happen. She said that she saw a lot of clients who struggle with their creativity and artistic abilities because society isn’t very accepting of us creatives. Instead the message is, “get a stable high paying job, start a family and retire early” and not “do what you do is best suited for you.” I don’t think my math degree and my subsequent job in finance was a waste of time. But I am rather glad that I found out early enough that I had something better waiting for me.

The next step for me would be to keep taking classes, get better at my craft, and above all, create more places online in order to reach out to people to sell my art.

What’s now

I’ve been thinking about “what next?” a bit like a graduating senior. And like getting a degree, all in all, it’s a good thing, I suppose(recovery is a good thing.) They, the graduates, are usually bitter sweet, yet full of excitement and potential for new adventures. But unlike a soon-to-be-graduate, I’m not fresh faced, or excited about what is about to unfold at the end of my intensive treatment period. I have too much experience, too much trauma, if you will, to feel completely enthralled and optimistic about what I’ll have to face, yet again. I’m really scared. Scared to foot my foot back into the world, and scared to put myself out there, for whatever I need to put myself out there for.

Already, I’ve started “stepping down” from my self-led, treatment (i.e. isolation from major triggers) filled with psychiatrist appointments, med changes, therapist visits, more self care than I’d ever put myself through in such a short period of time, and retching amount of self compassion (if my old self were to describe it.) And you know what? I’m doing much better now: the meds are fine (no huge side effects that I noticed), therapy has been a bit of a struggle, (because I’ve been resistant to change, as you can tell), I do my workouts consistently throughout the week, and I go to art classes regularly.

But it’s always the “what next?” question that throws me off from feeling good about where I am, and how far I’ve gotten. Somebody told me that if you were to ask that of your own life, it would just be “death.” That is the ultimate “what next,” right? I’ve done the “what next” thing all my life throughout school and my short lived career, and it hasn’t helped me much. When I was in school, I was studying 2 grades ahead of where I was, and at my job, I was thinking two promotions or lateral moves ahead. And you know what? It was really tiring, having to do everything in front of me now, and having to do everything for the future. Thinking about your future once in awhile in terms of saving for your first house, or a special event like a wedding or something isn’t detrimental, but rather smart. But for me, my body was here in the now, but my head was in the future- and I can tell you it’s much more dangerous than having it in the clouds.

So today, I’m resisting the urge, this habit of mine, to think into the future, and making 5 year plans, or thinking about careers. Because I need to be here now.