NOTE: Some material here discusses suicide. If this is a trigger please do not read it at this time. Thank you, friend.
How many times have you felt crazy, whether people have suggested it or not?
Hi folks. Thank you for visiting and taking your time to read with me. I’d like to start by quoting one of my firsts posts, which describes the events of the night I tried to take my life.
10. You. Are. Not. Crazy. Don’t EVER let someone tell you are crazy. And don’t you DARE believe the lie. What you are going through is VERY, VERY real. Don’t EVER let someone downplay what you may have to deal with on a daily basis. Don’t let them downplay it if you go through it once a year. It is real. It lives with us. It may lurk in the corner or it may not. We realize this. You are human just like everyone else around you. This is not an illness, this is a lifestyle.
I thought I was crazy.
It wasn’t until I started becoming proactive with what I was feeling, and deliberate in getting answers, that I truly began to understand my mental condition. After years of living with my feelings…my hauntings, I decided to go to a psychologist. After years of visiting doctors for issues like self esteem, anger, porn, tiredness, impatience, irritability, road rage, sex addiction, sadness, whatever I could think, that was when I FINALLY started to get some answers that made sense. I had to be real with myself first. This was hard.
It was also at that time that I grew into my faith…
I was utterly broken. I had no spirit. I had a minimal will to live. I. Felt. Crazy. I needed a spiritual hospital. And I found this in a church that made all the difference in the world. If you can find a place such as the one I found, please take the time to grow within it. Take the time to let it heal you. Let it be your safe place. Your recovery center. I know a lot of people are immediately turned off by the words religion, Christian, born again, and believer. I know because I was that person for SO many years. Even though (or in spite of the fact that) I was brought up under a strict, fire-and-brimstone, New England Baptist household. Yeah, the kind that burned strong, independent women at the stake.
I grew to hate it.
It was then that I was able to realize what WAS symptomatic, and what WAS NOT…
A lot of this happened recently. By recently I mean within the last five years of my life (I am currently 41). I had been seeing psychologists ever since I got out of the Marine Corps in 1995. It was after I had gone through a traumatic marital separation that I finally wanted to get to know who I was. I delved deep. I took personality tests. I took psychological tests. I got to know my astrological sign, Leo. I studied the Enneagram (I’ll make this a future post). I even asked for my ex-wife’s opinion once we were amicable – whoduh thunk?! Here’s some notes on the diagnosis I received from my doctor-
♦ Has anxiety disorder (rule out panic disorder)
♦ Has depressive disorder (rule out bipolar disorder)
♦ Has adult ADHD
♦ Has mood disorder (rule out bipolar disorder)
Talk about feeling crazy! I was a grown male with a job that required a security clearance. An adult male with a 9-year old daughter. Wow, reality was a lightning bolt of shock for me after I accepted my circumstances. Have you been there?
Yes, I discovered I had a mental condition or two. I don’t like to call it a mental illness because illness suggests abnormality…freakishness…craziness. I am not ill – though I do take medicine. I was born like this. It is genetic. I didn’t have answers, and I DESPERATELY needed them. If I had them at an earlier age, things may or may not have gone “smoother”, but at least I would have known the truth instead of feeling like a freak. The consummate outsider. The rebel without a clue. A lost boy.
I know that we’ve all felt like this. You may feel like it right now as you’re looking at your screen reading this.
Just remember these words of reinforcement:
- You are a normal human who experiences emotions like others. They may be a little bit more extreme. So what.
- Don’t let someone downplay what you are feeling. Ever.
- What you are going through is VERY, VERY real. You must tend to it and monitor it.
- You can break the chain…of depression. Of suicide. Of cutting. Of drinking. It may be a very real fight. But you are capable of ending it in your generation.
- You can feel better with counseling and medicine.
- And exercise.
- And the Lord.
- Journaling or blogging will also help you in your coping and recovery.
- You are a brave and courageous person for living through your Specter. How many people begin and continue their day when they find it as hard as you do? You’re a survivor. Yes, indeed, a hero you beautiful soul.
- Surround yourself with those who care for your well being. Make necessary endings when needed.
May you find peace in the valley which you are currently traveling. It will end.