Good morning, my Friends!
Another week has passed and here we are again greeting Monday 😀 I hope your weekend was productive, lazy, beautiful, exciting–or at least one of them! I spent most of Sunday sitting out in the garden reading and soaking in some much-needed sunshine. The clothesline was even put into use.
Today I will describe a bad day to you the best I can. It’s difficult for me to speak about things I struggle with. On the other hand, if I don’t they will stay buried and just resurface wearing another guise. I have found support and stability in the last year so that I can move out of ‘survival mode’ and start telling my story.
On a bad day, it is as if my anxiety and depression medication had decided to take a holiday–or perhaps they are on strike. If left up to my brain, I would stay underneath the covers frozen with emptiness. On the worst days, my migraines come hang out as well. In pain and without the motivation to even take care of my basic needs. I appear to Shawn, my boyfriend, as upset or angry. It feels like powerful electricity is running through my brain and lower back. It is very uncomfortable place to be physically, mentally and spiritually.
I need to let you know that it isn’t any persistent worry or thoughts that drive these bad days for the most part. It feels more like a physical illness that affects my mind as well. I often have to guess what may have set it off. In the past, I had no way of relieving that pain so I just had to wait it all out.
Recently, we purchased a self-help workbook based on DBT therapy techniques. DBT stands for Dialectical Behavior Therapy. In short, they are techniques I can use to distract and soothe myself during these bad days. We posted a list of activities that work for me on my computer keyboard and headboard so I can find them easily.
Here’s my list:
- Burn scented candles/oils
- Hug Shawn
- Look out the window/go into the backyard
- listen to soothing music
- listen to a podcast
- drink relaxing tea
- take a slow hot bath
- play with Spazzer (our cat)
- write using a creative prompt
- color a mandela
So far, so good by the way 😀 The more techniques I learn, the more I can use to battle the two-headed hydra when it comes around. Thankfully, bad days don’t persist beyond a few days so there are plenty of amazing, beautiful days. Today is one of those 🙂
A Parting Thought..
Everybody struggles with their own pain and difficulties. That’s a give in, as my teachers in elementary school would say. The key is to learn the tools in order to be ready to “fight” your hydra when it comes poking around (hear how a slam poet does it here). Take care and I will see you again soon.
Every week I answer another question about my disability from Redefining Disability, a creation of Rose b. Fischer. I do this in order to continue my healing process as well as doing my part to create an open dialogue about mental illness. Thank you for listening. If you want to share your story, please join us!