‘There Is More Evil In The Least Sin Than In The Greatest Affliction.’ T. Brooks

Some days my damaged eyes feel as weary as my burdened soul

Some days it feels like I carry the world on shoulders that are tensed with anxious thinking

Some days the world feels as chaotic and unpredictable as the disease discarding lesions on my brain

Some days I feel so jittery that my nerves feel like they’re fraying and uncovering more than just damaged myelin

Some nights I lay awake not able to sleep even though my days are consumed by an overwhelming fatigue

Some nights it feels like electricity is coursing through my limbs and extremities

Some nights I feel like not waking up in the morning still wouldn’t be enough to get rid of all that’s wrong

Sometimes there are moments when I think that even a lifetime isn’t enough time

Time to shed all the broken and irreparable pieces of me

Time to start over

Time to begin again

Or maybe a lifetime is all it takes

To be gifted a new body and mind

And leave all that affliction behind

In the past

Where it belongs

Buried and covered

In someone else’s grave

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‘Nobody Told Me There’d Be Days Like These.’ John Lennon

There’s a song by John Lennon

It’s called ‘Nobody Told Me’

I can’t even begin to count how many times I’ve used the lyrics to update my Facebook status

Or to caption my Instagram pictures

And most definitely whispered under my breath

It’s not particularly mind blowing

But it pretty much sums up an average day in my life

In the life of someone with mental illness

In the life of someone with a chronic and incurable illness

I wonder sometimes

If someone had told me that days like this could happen

Would it have prepared me better

Would it have armed me with the tools I need to make it through that day

Would it have given me the weapons I need to face another day

Part of me thinks so

Maybe Lennon was on to something when he lamented that he wasn’t warned for what reality would become

Because that’s the thing isn’t it?

Once upon a time in his life

In my life

Maybe even in yours

It wasn’t this way

Maybe yesterday

Maybe a long long time ago

It was different

Maybe if someone had told me

I would have appreciated it then

Or maybe I could have preserved it better

Like a photograph that keeps life frozen in time

But now I’m stuck in the present

Facing each day blind

And now I’m here

On nights like these

That nobody told me about

With only the song lyrics of a long dead rockstar to keep me company

‘Nobody told me there’d be days like these…

Strange days indeed’

‘What Matters Most Is How Well You Walk Through The Fire.’ Charles Bukowski

Sometimes life just seems so hard

I know

That seems so angst-y

It just that it seems filled with pain and sadness and so much heartache

That sometimes life just doesn’t seem worth it

After all what’s the big reward?

It’s supposed to be in life itself

Isn’t it?

But what if, it’s not?

What if you don’t reap the rewards?

Sometimes life with MS and anxiety and depression feels like this

It feels like all effort

And no great pay off

Maybe it’s just me

I don’t know

Maybe I can’t find happiness in the little things

Or maybe the happiness just isn’t enough

It doesn’t matter

What does matter?

‘What matters most is how well you walk through the fire.’

It matters if you can find the strength to persevere in spite of it all

It matters if you can find the courage to keep going when it feels like there so many more bad days than good

You matter even when you feel like you don’t

And that’s probably the hardest thing to remember

Especially when you keep trying to douse the flames from burning up around you

Instead of walking through them

(A picture of happier days 😏)

‘No Dress Rehearsal. This Is Our Life.’

11 years ago

October 27, 2007

We got married

Still a few years shy of 30 years old

We thought we had it all figured out

How little we knew

We had yet to learn a lot

To experience so so much

We thought we knew it all

Life, predictably knew better

And yet

Even though

It was never perfect

It was occasionally heartbreaking

It was often difficult

It was filled with laughter

It was sometimes chaotic

It was sprinkled with passion

It was usually me needing help

It was intermittently explosive

It was frequently unexpected

And it was always…

Always…with you

🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤

Throw back 11 years ago

“What if all that keeps you trapped in that invisible boxing ring is the belief that you have to keep fighting in order to win?… What will happen to your opponent if he suddenly has nobody who will fight him?” Courtney Perry

Once upon a time

I started having panic attacks

I hated them so vehemently

That I swore to fight them at all costs

I swore to do whatever I had to to to win this battle

So I trained

And so I won many battles

But eventually I grew tired

I grew tired of always fighting

Being on guard 24/7 was crippling

And life was becoming one giant battlefield

One day

The panic attacks came back

They had grown stronger than before

I shrank my world to fit in my condo

Hoping if I stayed off the battlefield

The panic attacks would see I was no longer in the fight

They’d turn around and walk away

And leave me alone

Instead, they found me there

In my safe place

Banging on my doors and windows

Rattling me to my very core

I was so afraid

I hid in the darkness and shrank into the corner

Days passed this way

I could hear them getting louder and louder

And just when my door sounded like it was going to break apart

And my mind was going to snap into a million pieces

I sprang to my feet

I frantically threw open the front door

And yelled for them to fucking do their worst

I screamed that I wasn’t afraid of them

I didn’t like them

They knew that

I never would

But I had grown so tired of living in a constant state of fear

That I realized I’d rather come face to face with them

And if they destroyed me

Well

Then at least it would be over

The funny thing was

That when I opened the door

No one was there

The hall was eerily silent

I was stunned

I looked around

Sure that they were just hiding

To catch me at my most vulnerable

I looked in corners and under crawl spaces

Still I was alone

I was bewildered and shaken

I sank to my knees in the quiet hallway

And I started to cry

Big fat tears rolled down my face

I wasn’t crying because I was afraid

Not this time

This time was different

I was crying because all of this time

All of these years

I had expended so much energy and strength

I had used up so much of myself

When all I had ever needed to do

Was to open that fucking door

—–

Life-changing article: Read this!

‘There is always some madness in love. But there is also always reason in madness.’ Nietzsche

I used to lament

How we would have had an epic love story

If it weren’t for my fucked up life getting in the way

It’s kinda messed up

How everyone loves the deeply flawed broken man in a romance novel

But nobody writes a story where the woman in the relationship is the one who is beautifully broken

Our story is nothing like a romance novel

I know I don’t need you to survive

This isn’t a story about a damsel in distress

Maybe I would even find a way to be happy without you in my life 🤷🏻‍♀️

The thing is

I don’t want to have to try

I want you in my life

In my darkest hours

In my darkest moments

I see you at the other end

Looking for me

Waiting for me

You read me affirmations when I’m too anxious to read them myself

You encourage me when my depression steals my ability to do that for myself

This isn’t a fairytale

It’s real and gritty and honest

And sometimes I’d rather be alone

I know it’s not easy

Sometimes, when I’m not consumed by own mind

I see how hard it is for you

That makes me far sadder than I could ever put into words

I still think how different your life could have turned out

If we hadn’t of met

I probably always will

I used to think that our love story was ruined

That it didn’t have a chance to flourish

Because of me

That my own story is filled with too many plot twists

To have a happy ending

But I was wrong

You are the plot twist

You’re the one I didn’t see coming

In a million years

I never would have guessed

That we’d be here

Together

After everything

All the hard times

All the sad times

Ive said before that I wouldn’t try to write something

That someone else had already written

And written so eloquently

This

Exactly

All of this:

And I’d choose you; in a hundred lifetimes, in a hundred worlds, in any version of reality, I’d find you and I’d choose you.”-Kiersten White

This Isn’t An Ode To Panic Disorder…

I’ve hated you since I started experiencing panic attacks

No

Even before that

I hated you when I saw what you did to my father

How merciless you were

I hated how vulnerable you made him

I hated how scared you made me feel

When I started having my own panic attacks

I wasn’t unsure or surprised by your arrival

I was just upset

I was angry that I couldn’t fend you off

Especially after having seen first hand the damage you caused

I was frustrated

And you grew stronger

I had my very first panic attack waiting to board a plane

That sense of helplessness and feeling of being trapped

Allowed you to flourish

And you grew stronger

I got more frustrated

I became depressed

At what I perceived as my failure

Failure of what?

Outrun you of course

Break the pattern

And you grew stronger

Throughout the years and the numerous times you showed up

You stole bits and pieces from me

From my identity

From the experiences I stopped myself from having

I can’t count how many things I’ve missed out on because I was just too damn scared of you

And you grew stronger

I didn’t know that it was me who fed you

I didn’t know it was me that built you up

I vacillated between fighting you and being so terrified of you that I hid behind medications and isolation

I’m bone tired of fighting

I’m drained of the energy it takes to be afraid

I’ve been living with you my entire life in one form of another

You haven’t killed me

Yet

I was hurt because of you

The people around me were hurt because of you

But it was I, who allowed that to happen

Not you

You were never strong

It was always me that was strong

Always fighting against you

And

Hiding when self preservation took over

I used so much energy trying to not let you win

That I didn’t realize

I could end this epic battle

By waving a white flag

I spent so much time hating you

When I should have been understanding you

Because you were struggling like me

You were the outcome of the bad day, bad week, bad month that I’d had

You were what my body needed to expel to move on

I was too consumed by the symptoms you gave me

The shortness of breath, the stomach cramps, the heart palpitations, the depersonalization

To see that those symptoms came up because I dreaded your arrival

I’m sorry that I didn’t see you for what you really are

You’re me

And we’re in this together

So

If my body and mind feel like they need to have a panic attack…

Well I guess it’s ok

We will get through this

It’ll be uncomfortable

But it will pass

Just like it always has

And I promise to try not to be so hard on you

If you promise to do the same

Who knows?

Maybe one day

I’ll even write a poem about how grateful I am for your existence

I’d tell you not to hold your breath

But we both know I’d be lying

So I’ll just say this

I get it, Panic Disorder

I really do

I’m only sorry that it’s taken me so long