A month has passed and not much happened on my website, despite all the ideas I still have and although I was willing to finally implement them. But instead of doing so, I’ve lost my perspective, got stuck in overthinking and eventually struggled with depression again. The tide can turn very fast. I really thought it’s getting better, I got it under control, I’m focused on achieving, but the next moment insecurity spread again. I withdrew into the cage of isolation, suffered in silence as always, despair over the darkness that had me back in its possession. Nobody knows how dark it can get.
I don’t talk about it. I distance myself when I’m feeling down, though I know that this loneliness is making it even worse. And although I know the triggers that made me break again, I was just watching me fall.
But I do know when I need help, so I called my therapist and made an appointment for a reflection talk. Otherwise, I’m handling it by myself. I’m a loner, a lone wolf, caused by many experiences that made me lose my trust and made me realize that people have a hard time to understand what it’s like to fight those shadows in your mind and how physically exhausting it is. Above all, the pain of ignorance and incomprehension has left a deep scar in my soul. This wound started bleeding again the other day, but I don’t want to write about this now. I’m done overthinking.
What I intend to say is that this lack of understanding and the awful stigma of mental illness makes it even worse to live with it and to establish a mental health for yourself. For me, I learned how to deal with my depression and anxiety but that doesn’t mean that they stay silent. They scream at me when something reminds my post-traumatic stress disorder of experiences from the past and when my environment hinders me to let go of the pain. It hurts when you try to move on but other’s behavior throws you back and it makes you drown in doubt and guilt for something that isn’t true. It’s hard to feel left alone with this fight against those demons that tell you things you don’t want to think about. It makes me angry how mental illness isn’t taken serious in society and how you’re confronted with marginalization and shame as soon as you’re brave enough to talk about the suffering. Why is that so? Why do people don’t want to understand although emotional disabilities are so in common? We all know what its like to be hurt. We all know what its like when something you can’t even express prevents you from realizing what should be so easy. We all know how it feels to be in self-doubt and fear of what could happen. We all make experiences and encounters that shapes our personality. We all have a past. We all have memories of pain that changed us. But mostly it stays hidden, repressed in the subconscious, safe behind the walls we build looking for protection.
In the past few weeks I was haunted by overthinking about too many things boiling up again and how my past confronts me to build something new. I got very frustrated about the fact that I was so close to evolve a new self and living, but had to admit that there’s still a lot to process. This back and forth is tiring. The downfall gets deeper the higher you’ve climbed. But yet again, this fallback made me remember my purpose.
I let it be, the situation of being depressed and feeling lonesome, spent my time with introspection and let the torture of my mind pass. Of course I wanted to get out of this darkness, but forcing your depleted energy to fight the negativity won’t make a change. What you need to do is to shift your attention.
I came across a saying: When you feel like quitting, think about why you started.
It followed me for a few days until I sat down and wrote down what I want. I reflected what I have to do to get ahead. I visualized my dreams and set my focus on my passion. I forced myself to think about my purpose: to create understanding.
Not a day goes by when I don’t think about writing or all these things I’d like to write about. I created this website to bring awareness of mental health, for others and myself, and to express my emotions through art. I wanted to give myself a way to release, because I’m still recovering. But my mind is standing in my way, and I shy away instead of showing up.
You need to remember your passion to fill your soul with joy. You need to remember your dreams to fill your heart with love. You need to learn to find and focus on yourself, because you’re the person dealing with your mind and living your life. I’m not saying to be selfish or self-centered, I want you to stop comparing, complaining and compromising. Be yourself and be kind, and life will become pleasant. Work hard for your goals and you will achieve them. Set your perspective on the good and it will grow.
But shifting your mindset away from the negative is a long process of daily practice.
Find out what helps me to switch overthinking into mindfulness next week.
“You’re so broken in your head.”
He said, holding her face in his hands.
Smiling, just as he did the first time they met.
“But that’s what makes you so adorable.”
And then he kissed her. He kissed her in a way that made her forget about time and space, and everything else.
Two years ago I’ve written a surrealistic short story about a girl who gets lost in a forest and trapped in the maze of the abyss. The title is „Snowballs and Butterflies“. It leads the reader through metaphorical images of hidden emotions and symbols the odyssey of the mind growing with the riddles of dreams.
I’ve revised the first draft a few times, but never really finished it. It always felt incomplete and I don’t know if I’ll ever make something out of this idea. But I think of it quite often recently. Perhaps because I’m experiencing the unwritten end of this process and transformation of self I tried to picture with this short story. The journey of getting entangled by illusions and lost on the wrong track, crushed by the numbness of emptiness, blinded by darkness. Of finding a spark of faint light to hold onto and crawling towards, backwards, up and down again, out of this hole.
When I was writing it, I was struggling with my life and mind. I was looking for a way to handle the chaos or how I could filter things out. I began to recognize the chain of reactions, how one thing has lead to another and the path I was going. Long before I realized it for myself, I’ve started to make tiny changes and take small steps to new directions. My perception became conscious, I got aware of the voice of my intuition that started to whisper. At that time, I saw white butterflies everywhere, no matter where I went but with the growing knowledge of where to go.
I didn’t know how much I’ve written in the past years, especially in 2016, until I finally came to organize all my writings last December. – Is it really just three months ago? It feels like ages. Probably because a lot has changed since then. Anyway, how many times have I read my own repeating thoughts on ideas and plans while I was going through my writings? It seemed to me like I was thinking of and confronted by the same old things over again, always at the same time of year. All these things I want to do for so long, all those tries and unfinished texts and random notes. All the planned projects and this big bunch of lose paper. But my thought processes have evolved over time and my will has become stronger.
In the past few weeks my mindset has shifted from procrastination to productivity. It has a lot to do with new things happening and new people coming into my life and how different these aspects make me feel with myself. I’ve come to realize that I’ve left behind my past and what’s been holding me back. I’ve transformed into a new me, my true self, no longer overthinking about what I can’t control or losing myself in doubts and worries. After years of feeling captive, I now somehow feel like a bird back in the sky that has just breaking free. I connected with something I can’t describe, but it’s an incredible feeling. My attitude has turned into something I haven’t experienced for a very long time, or perhaps even never like this before. Somehow casual.
First I was confused, then I focused. It happened that I had to take a break and my creativity exploded. The last two weeks I spent writing, drawing, painting and working on my website. I don’t want to spend another year doing the same old nothing. I want to implement my plans, achieve my goals. I’m going to do what I can’t stop daydreaming about. Life offers me new inspiration and signs of synchronicity continue to encourage me. And while it’s slowly becoming spring outside, inside of me my passions flourish.
A few days ago I was standing at the traffic light. I’d just taken a short walk, enjoying how mild the weather had suddenly become and that bids are chirping everywhere. It seemed so calm and exciting at the same time. I felt good, even though I didn’t really know why. I wondered if it is the sense of transition and why I feel so much more confident. Is it true? Have I become aware of myself? Have I connected with my inner truth and am I now ready to start?
So I was standing there when I thought about this, as a cyclist passed me slowly. The way he pedaled it looked taxing, but he appeared so serene. He winked at me with a smile that somehow… I don’t know. It was just a brief moment when our eyes crossed. I immediately got the feeling of understanding and encouragement. As if he’d welcomed me.
I smiled broadly when the cyclist was already out of sight.
The traffic light turned green.