‘The loneliest moment in someone’s life is when they are watching their whole world fall apart and all they can do is stare blankly.’ The Great Gatsby

2020 was a nightmare

For most of the world

For most people I know

For me

It was still better than 2019

The year I fell apart

And painstakingly put myself back together

I know that might seem surprising to you

With all the devastation, isolation and chaos of this year

But if you’ve ever experienced a mental health crisis

You know

There is nothing worse

No physical pain

No physical illness

More horrific than when your own mind turns on you

You see

There’s little reprieve

No painkiller

No ice pack

No amount of Netflix

That could have eased the chaos that was ensuing in my brain

I think back to that time period

I couldn’t eat

I was using drink supplements to sustain myself

During COVID, we’ve baked wonderful desserts and made tasty meals that I’ve enjoyed so thoroughly

Then, I couldn’t sleep

Now during this quarantine, I take naps during the day

Then, I couldn’t stay in my own home

Now my home is my oasis

Then I was scared to be alone

Now I wouldn’t mind so much if Joey was out of the house a bit more 😬

Then, Joey would leave for the day

I would feel the dread in every cell of my being

I remember waiting for my parents to come over

To just be with me

And trying to take my mind off the wait

I showered

And it was excruciating

Every single second

My brain told me everything was wrong

Now I can enjoy my showers and look forward to when I can take a bath again (it’s a work in progress)

So I know many of you have experienced rock bottom moments during this year

And I don’t take the deaths of so many lightly

It’s been devastating and I can surely sympathize with the losses people have experienced

But I hope

You can understand

Why this year will not go down in history for me

As the worst year ever

No

That title is still held by 2019

The effects of which I may never fully recover from

I hope you can wear your invisible survival of 2020 badges proudly

But I survived 2019

The year I fell apart

And put myself back together

‘And as I hung up the phone, it occurred to me. He’d grown up just like me. My boy was just like me’

I thought being a teenager was the hardest part of having a parent with mental illness

The fighting, the lack of understanding, the fear and the unpredictability

It wasn’t though

I’m 38 years old and the hardest part is right now

When he’s 74 years old and he’s too scared to leave the house

Too scared to drive

Too scared to be home alone

Too scared to go anywhere

It’s hearing the fear in his voice when he asks you to call him bc he’s going to be alone for a few hours

It’s seeing the anxiety manifest in his body movements and in the tightness of his face and wringing of his hands

It’s the pleading in his voice to go to the hospital where he hopes they’ll find something, that is not anxiety

It’s hearing and seeing him lash out in anger because he’s frustrated and helpless in his life

It’s knowing that he’s missing out on life because of this thing he’s battled for over 40 years

It’s coming home after seeing him

And crying uncontrollably

Because you still can’t help him

You still can’t save him

You still feel like the scared kid who’s home alone with him when he’s having a panic attack and you don’t know what to do

You still feel like the teenager whose angry and pissed off at a world that lets this happen to anyone

It’s knowing another day will go by and he won’t have conquered his anxiety

His illness wins again

It seems like it always fucking wins

And I’m afraid that mine will too…

Some days are just like that…

I guess this has become like a journal for me

I write here and I don’t care who reads it

Or who doesn’t

It’s cathartic

In ways that I can’t even express

So Dear Diary,

I had a bad day

Maybe a bad few days

After increasing my dose with the gabapentin

It had a really sedating effect on me

I take a lot of other meds so it seems with the increase

I was just being knocked out

So I’m back on the one pill

Still in pain

So I’m not sure where that leaves me

I called the clinic to inquire about a lesser dose

So we’ll see

I also had my monthly labwork

It’s for both Lemtrada

And for my low platelets

The nurse came to the condo again

It didn’t go well

A vein blew

If you have a blown vein, it means that the vein has ruptured and is leaking blood. It happens when a nurse or other healthcare professional attempts to insert a needle into a vein, and things don’t go quite right.

Healthline.com

I’m in a lot of pain

My left hand

My right arm

Today life is hard

Tonight I just want to close my eyes

And hope that when I dream

There is no pain

No fear

No regret