#wcw On Perseverance

I often blog about mental health issues because I have lived a life of great strife. Strife I self-inflict and strife cast against me.  It’s not just me that hurts me. I have been tremendously hurt and traumatized throughout my life by others.  My body hurts me: I suffer from chronic migraines, chronic pain, chronic fatigue and to top it off, I am bipolar.  I am an extrovert who often finds herself isolated and alone. Usually I am in self-imposed exile, but it’s not always physical exile.  Many times I feel socially exiled because my life looks and feels so different than those of my family and my friends or perhaps I am with them physically but doing my best to put on a brave face and appear “happy” or “normal.”

I have great friends.  True friends.  They love me and support me in spite of my mood swings, irritability, insecurities, and socio-economic status.  They are there for me if and when I am willing to reach out to them and let them help me.  I have great friends because I am a great friend whenever I am capable.  I am steadfast in my love and loyalty to them. They have earned it and so much more.

Today’s quote honors those friendships and the struggles that I know we all face, whether they are similar to mine or entirely different.  Everyone struggles. Everyone suffers. Everyone hurts sometimes.  And to get through the struggles we must endure it is essential that we never give up in our faith and trust in God — or the life process, karma, insert your belief system here — that things will get better.  Each struggle is independent of the rest. Some people do appear to live harder lives than others, but that is not because we are not all equally deserving. God offers blessings to us each day if we can crawl out of bed, put on our shoes, and live our life with our mind in the moment and our eyes on the lookout for blessings, which are there for us to find.

This quote is also chosen today because it is the holiday season which is commonly a very, very difficult time for people.  For some it is the additional costs associated with the holiday. For others it can be feelings of obligation to others we do not agree with. Even the fast pace of the clock ticking down to Christmas can add great stress to those who are otherwise happy.  The fact that it is Christmas (a typical family-oriented holiday) causes pain to those who are or think they are alone.  Social expectations that this is a happy, merry, time of cheer can cause additional pressure to those who struggle to maintain balance and stability with their moods (anxiety, depression, mania, etc.).

It is also an election year with a highly contentious and divided reflection on the outcome and future.  This is the third spire of why I have chosen wisdom from Winston Churchill.  I hope you will find it helpful in bringing to you strength and courage to persevere through your dark times, whatever the cause, even if only for a day or a moment.

#wcw On Perseverance | Memee's Musings

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Cut/paste and follow these 3 simple rules:

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Stagnation

Stagnation | Letters to the Mind

I cannot move.
I cannot stand.
I lie and stare
and really don’t care.

The whispers in my head,
get off your butt,
you’re hurting yourself,
this inaction will
only make it
worse.

I know it’s true.
If only I could
don’t you think
that I really would?

I feel frozen in place;
I’m stuck in the mud.
Motivation is
all well and good
but without drive
nothing will change.
At least not now,
not while I’m
in this space.

And so,
I wait only for
the next moment
to take this one’s place.

Eventually, I know,
as it always has been,
a moment will come
when a shift has
occurred and
I’ll be on the mend.
I’ll find myself
standing upon the
forward road
again.

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I originally published the above poem at my other blog, Letters to the Mind. Please consider writing to the mental illness that impacts the world you walk in and sharing it with our new community blog. The site was built in the hopes that other creatives who suffer from a mental illness or have a family member/loved one with a mental illness will write to the illness and post it on the site for two purposes.

The first is as a way to grow and challenge how we relate to our illness. In the act of writing to your illness you achieve empowerment. And the second purpose is to educate other people about the various mental illnesses that people live with every single day and how their struggles differ or are similiar to everyone else’s. With education comes understanding and with understanding stigma begins to fall ill and eventually dies.

For more information on contributing to the Letters to the Mind please click here.

We ALWAYS need contributors, any and all mental disorders welcome. No one is turned away and your own blogs, media platforms are cataloged and linked on the site.

Thank you,

Memee

When Hopelessness Hits

1936 South Dakota dust bowl

I’ve spiraled down
and now I fear
what’s on my plate
is a fate
I did not anticipate.

I thought I had
an excellent plan
that would keep me
from residing in
your forsaken land.

I was wrong.
I could not evade
the plans you’d
already laid.

And now I see it
rising before me,
not the reprieve,
not the light
for they have
disappeared from sight.

What awaits me
is darkness and despair.
Lord please lift me out of here!

© MemeesMusings/B.L. Memee, 2016-2018. All rights reserved.

I originally published the above poem at my other blog, Letters to the Mind. Please consider writing to the mental illness that impacts the world you walk in and sharing it with our new community blog. The site was built in the hopes that other creatives who suffer from a mental illness or have a family member/loved one with a mental illness will write to the illness and post it on the site for two purposes.

The first is as a way to grow and challenge how we relate to our illness. In the act of writing to your illness you achieve empowerment. And the second purpose is to educate other people about the various mental illnesses that people live with every single day and how their struggles differ or are similiar to everyone else’s. With education comes understanding and with understanding stigma begins to fall ill and eventually dies.

For more information on contributing to the Letters to the Mind please click here.

We ALWAYS need contributors, any and all mental disorders welcome. No one is turned away and your own blogs, media platforms are cataloged and linked on the site.

Thank you,

Memee

A Letter to Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

via Letters to the Mind
Contributing Author: Chad McDonald

 

dr__jekyll_and_mr__hyde_by_zerinity

 

Hey there boys,

I hate to tell you this but all my friends and family say you have to
go. You’ve caused too much chaos in our lives. You’ve ruined my
marriages, cost me jobs, alienated me from friends and family, lead me to jail on a few occasions, and even had me hospitalized when you wouldn’t shut the fuck up.

You have been nothing but hell to my life, and still I can’t get rid
of you. You are a part of me. To quote Renee Zellweger, “You had me
at hello.”

And since I am unable to rid myself of either of you we are going to
have to revisit the rules of our little game.

From now on, I need you to listen to me. You may give me ideas, some
good, some bad, and some that are definitely harmful to all of us, but
it will be me making the decisions, no matter how long you scream in
my ear.

There will be no more porn, no all-night drinking binges, and no more yelling
at people over piddly shit. Have you got that Mr. Hyde?

As for you Jekyll, just because we are strong doesn’t mean we have to
be silent. It’s okay to ask for help or just have a cup of tea without
being pretentious about it. We don’t have to go into hiding simply
because something has upset us.

To quote Rodney King, “Why can’t we all just get along?” Hyde, you
can still tell me to take a break and have a little fun without
breaking the pocketbook. We don’t have to go on benders for weeks at
a time. We can just chill. We can feel good and laugh and smile
and be intimate with our girlfriend, but it’s not the end of the world if we
don’t have to do it right now.

Jekyll, stop being an obsessive, introverted, arrogant little prick.
I’m more than glad to have you as my friend. You always give me such
unique insight into what Hyde is doing. And you have stopped me from
doing stupid stuff on more than one occasion.

We each offer strengths and insights into our shared little world that make
us a unique person of value to the human race, but in the end I’m
going to be the one in charge. This is my life and you have been with
me through thick and thin, not so much for the blessings but as the
cause. Dudes, together we can be something extraordinary. We have
the ability to learn faster, think deeper, to be more compassionate,
more productive, and an even funnier son-of-a-bitch than we are now.

So when I feel you guys getting out of control I’m going to have to
take a break, talk with you, and keep you in line. You can help me be
the person I want to be, not the person on the 6 o’clock news or the
daily arrest report.

Hating you has done no good and giving you free reign has only
brought chaos. So this is it. Be polite. Introduce yourself. Be the
person I know I can be and everything will be just fine. By embracing
you, I make us all a better person, somebody worth remembering, not
somebody needing to be forgotten.

So do you understand now why things have been so rough the last 30
years? It’s because you’ve been in control, not me. That changes
today! I can embrace you or I can medicate you into oblivion. The
choice is mine.

Think about it for a while and I’ll decide what part of you gets to
continue being a part of me.

Love,

Dr. Frankenstein

© 2016 Chad McDonald

Art courtesy of Zerinity.


chad-2014

About the author:

This letter was written during the course of my first major manic episode of the year, which actually started around Christmas. I am the author of the book, “To My Children, Love Dad.” It is my testimony about how basic Christian doctrines have changed my life and how they can help everyone. Insert shameless plug: All who buy the book directly from my website receive a signed copy with a personal note of hope and love, if you’d like. I also blog about the things I have time to ponder about in my life in Southeastern Idaho and share my photography of this beautiful piece of America.

I do have a permanent disability called Bipolar Disorder that I have been dealing with for 30 years and researching for the last 20. Some days I cannot focus and get nothing done while other days I am hyper-productive and hilarious. However most of the time, aside from my talking to God or any number of ideas racing through my head, you’d never know I have an illness that has almost taken my life.

I rely on the support of family and close friends inside and outside of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and above all my Heavenly Father, My Savior, and my spirit bro, the Holy Ghost. Without them, I would not have had the strength to change my perspective in life to discover that this “curse” was given to me as a blessing if I would learn how to use my symptoms.

Life isn’t perfect, but the perfect joy in life is knowing that we have the strength not merely to survive but to enjoy, to rejoice, and to exude our divinity everywhere we go. From the second half of 2 Nephi 2:2, Book of Mormon:

… and all thine afflictions shall be consecrated for thy good.

Blog: CMMcDonaldBooks

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Please, if your life is impacted by mental illness help spread awareness and understanding by writing to that illness and sharing it at Letters of the Mind blog project.

Click here to Contribute.

☀ Memee

How Do I Survive the Weekend?

via Brighton Bipolar
about the author

Brighton Bipolar header

This weekend my husband and I are heading off with another couple for two days in France. Triggered by my recent depressive slump, they thought it would ‘Cheer me Up’ to get away for a short break.

Whilst I appreciate the thought, words can’t express how terrified I am.

I’m in a depressive phase, which means I have very little energy and sleep A LOT. My moods are cycling rapidly and can turn from anger or confusion to deep sadness in a very short space of time. Today I didn’t Wake up until 2pm and am still exhausted. It’s the need for sleep/lack of energy issue that causes me the most concern with this weekend trip.

I have to be up and ready to leave at 5am Saturday morning – lack of sleep tends to make all my other symptoms worse and the couple we are traveling with could end up facing some of my more ‘Antisocial’ behaviours. I’m also not sure it’s safe for me to be on the back of a motorcycle for hours on end when feeling dizzy, confused and exhausted.

What happens if I have ‘An Episode’? – Usually a long depressive phase like the one I’m in now culminates in a huge meltdown, which is not pretty. It’s been almost a year since my last Episode and I’m terrified that I’m due another any time soon. Whilst my husband has seen me through many of these breakdowns before I’m positive his friends don’t want to be saddled with a screaming, crying, hallucinating harpy literally punching and kicking anyone within arms reach. Although I wouldn’t normally hurt a fly, my Episodes can often be very violent towards those around me as well as myself.

What if my mood turns Manic? – When in the clutches of Mania I come across as the life and soul of the party, talking a mile a minute and making very dubious choices. People would describe me as ‘Fun’ and ‘Bubbly’ as I throw caution to the wind and take dangerous risks without fear. During Manic phases, I am invincible and my naturally flirtatious personality turns into Hypersexuality. Yes, I become a slut. I’m not proud of my behaviour when in the throws of Mania but at the time, I’m feeling great and function on instinct rather than rationality. Hypersexuality is one of the myriad symptoms of Bipolar but isn’t really talked about, the shame and embarrassment we feel about these moments isn’t something that’s easily shared.

What happens if I have ‘An Episode’? – Usually a long depressive phase like the one I’m in now culminates in a huge meltdown, which is not pretty. It’s been almost a year since my last Episode and I’m terrified that I’m due another any time soon. Whilst my husband has seen me through many of these breakdowns before I’m positive his friends don’t want to be saddled with a screaming, crying, hallucinating harpy literally punching and kicking anyone within arms reach. Although I wouldn’t normally hurt a fly, my Episodes can often be very violent towards those around me as well as myself.

What if my mood turns Manic? – When in the clutches of Mania I come across as the life and soul of the party, talking a mile a minute and making very dubious choices. People would describe me as ‘Fun’ and ‘Bubbly’ as I throw caution to the wind and take dangerous risks without fear. During Manic phases, I am invincible and my naturally flirtatious personality turns into Hypersexuality. Yes, I become a slut. I’m not proud of my behaviour when in the throws of Mania but at the time, I’m feeling great and function on instinct rather than rationality. Hypersexuality is one of the myriad symptoms of Bipolar but isn’t really talked about, the shame and embarrassment we feel about these moments isn’t something that’s easily shared.

I don’t want to disappoint my husband and his friends, but am terrified they may get a glimpse of ‘The Real Me’ behind the mask I put on daily. People often THINK they know what living with this condition is like but are nowhere near prepared for the reality. I’ve scared off friends and family before and have lost count of the times I’ve been referred to as ‘Crazy’ or ‘Psychotic’. It breaks my heart that I am so terrified of ‘Me’.