I'm never sure what imprint I left on you the last time we interacted or crossed paths. I usually assume the worst. With no confidence in myself, I always feel like I need to apologize or explain but I am caught up in shame and I say nothing. This post is for me to get out some thoughts that I have held onto and to just give you some context on my life if you are interested. I’m trying to be honest about my experience and it deals with my path with mental illness. I hope this kind of content does not scare you, and if it does, then I guess this site/post isn’t for you. I only have the strength to write and share this because so many people have said how much it has helped them. Thank you for reading and being so supportive.
I haven’t been able to keep up the mask that everything is okay, let alone live a normal life in the last year. I’m always scared to share what I’m facing, because it is so personal and because I don’t want to put the weight on others. It has always been my nature to be incredibly introverted, growing up with a passion for reading sci fi novels and playing video games in the basement. I have kept to myself with a lot of my problems in life, that’s just my nature. When I have been injured, physically or mentally, I retreat inwards away from the pain. It’s happened a few times in my life where I have become a complete recluse and shut out everything, just because I was trying to avoid a physical or mental trauma.
I’ve been trying to understand what’s been going on in my head for my whole life. I was diagnosed with depression and insomnia in my early 20’s to describe these episodes that I go through. Every medication that they tried to give me seemed to tweak the wrong dials. Most medication has had side effects that vastly outweigh the benefits. In the last year, I faced the shakes, tinnitus, migraines, illusions of grandeur, hearing voices, psychotic thoughts, nausea, self harm, anxiety, panic attacks, and mind zaps. These medications weren’t for me, because they were trying to treat the wrong type of problem.
Earlier this year, I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I’ve been lucky enough to find a medication medley that is working okay, though it does have its share of side effects. Right now I’m just trying to get over the shakes, low energy, double vision in my left eye, low platelet count but other than that it is good. The twisted, foreign voices that fought against my every move no longer ring so loud in my ear. As with all episodes in my life, I’m very reclusive. I want to break that habit. Some days are better than others, and I just wanted to say thank you for the love on the good and for your patience on the bad days.
As my mind starts to calm down, and my focus is on healing, I have taken time to process some old traumas. There’s pain and trauma that I never really dealt with in my past. Pain hurts and death sucks. For me, it is too hard to hold onto the hot embers of bad memories and process them in a language that others can understand. I find that my art is a way to circumnavigate that part of my mind. I can find ways to process the pain for myself and to describe it to others. I believe that I have always sat on the divide of the abstract and the representational because of this internal journey that I take everytime that I sit down to work on a piece.