**Trigger warning: Self-harm involved**
So much has happened over the past week that it would hard to recount everything on this entry. Every time I’m overwhelmed by the burdens of staying somewhat sane, depression takes advantage when I least expect it. It’s the worst shadow that follows wherever you go, whatever you do or feel. What I hate the most is the lack of feeling or “numbness” that arrives as soon as the manic episode has finally retreated. Naively, I thought I could handle my negative thinking through writing; unfortunately I lost sight of the most basic step to fight against depression: Sleep.
I can’t remember the last time I had a full night’s rest. Because of my current psychological evaluations, and the difficulty to find a psychiatrist, trazodone or seroquel are off the table. Melatonin proved to be an effective solution to my sleeping problems for a few days, but for the last month, my sleeping cycle has declined considerably. This should have been my warning sign, but since I’ve been seeing my therapist every week and practiced some basic DBT skills (which I find fascinating), I didn’t pay attention at all.
Now I am paying the consequences. Harshly. This past weekend was full of Easter activities with the family, none of them noticed the severity of my mood cycle since I was a bundle of joy and energy. Instead of resting and taking the time I needed to recharge, I kept myself busy without listening to my boyfriend’s plead to stop and take a break. But I couldn’t stop because I was enjoying the rush and powerful feeling I could do anything (If I only knew what it was).
Unfortunately the quick dose of adrenaline didn’t last long. By Sunday morning I felt the world was coming down on me and the negative forces took over my mind. I kept telling to myself “I can control this”. On the outside, I put my usual quirk character in motion for the boys and the rest of my family. We had a nice gathering, full of laughs, egg hunting for the kids, a great feast, so why 2 hours later I’m in the bathroom inducing self-mutilation on my body once again? Suicide was not an option, I didn’t have a plan, I didn’t want to die, but pressing the sharp razor against my skin alleviated the pain and lack of direction. There is something really morbid about self-mutilation. The feeling of coldness and the interruption of light increases considerably for a few moments, until the sensation of guiltiness intensifies even more.
How could I have done this after writing how to practice mindfulness on my last entry? After I fiercely fought to mitigate a horrendous hash tag on Twitter? Just when every day, finally the sun decided to greet me with a smile. Yes blame it on the weather, the time change, or I am the one who needs to carry the blame? why didn’t I called my doctor? why didn’t I rushed to the hospital? Shame does not bring any solutions nor gives me the hope I need to recover. Recovery seems like a mirage on a desert, but still, relapsing on self-mutilation brings me to the point of either I keep moving as this is part of the rehabilitation, set up better sleeping patterns, work on my medication routine and learn from my mistakes. I cried a lot yesterday thinking how hard it is to move on from the visible scars and the pain I caused to others.
There comes a time when all I can do is to pick up the pieces of my own brokenness, put them together patiently with self-care and compassion to ease the conflicting feelings I’m currently experiencing. Self-harm not only affects teenagers as most people think; it affects a large group of adults like myself too. It is not a immature act or self-absorbed practice to gain attention either. It releases emotional pain and I hide my scars by wearing sweaters or long sleeve shirts because I don’t want anyone in my family, especially my kids, to notice it. One thing is for sure: the razor won’t solve anything, It won’t take away the hurt and pain.
Depression is a lying bastard, like a telemarketer who won’t stop calling you every day until you give in thinking you can get rid of it. I wish I could define a beautiful place to get lost that doesn’t include inflicting more pain, or suicide. Like a Wes Anderson film.
I got stuck in a moment, a very painful one, but I am still here fighting.
“Part of recovery is relapse. I dust myself off and move forward again”