Category Archives: Mental Health

It’s Happening Again

Well, hello, blog. (*Dusts it off.*)

It’s been six and a half months since I’ve updated, and I didn’t even realize it. Sorry. I’m a shitty blogging friend. But I’m still and still and still folding into myself, isolating.

I don’t expect anyone to read this, but I feel the need to document it. I don’t think I’m having another big break, but there is something that happened during the big break that’s happening again. My sleeping trends are out of whack. Then, I would be nervous and reluctant and afraid to go to sleep at night. Also, I would often sleep during the day.

That’s what’s happening again. I don’t want to go to sleep at night, and then I’m out of it during the day. My mind in general is out of it, and I feel like I’m wading through a morass to access any thoughts. I can feel myself doing a shoddy job on my tasks, and what’s more, sometimes I can’t bring myself to care. The only reason I care is that I know I would regret losing my job, that if I suddenly disappear and stop completing tasks, things would only get worse. I’d lose any source of income.

I just want to live in my own make-believe world. I feel like I can’t function in this one.

My therapist and psychiatrist have been talking about suspected Asperger’s. I realized that, when it comes down to it, my problems don’t matter. Social anxiety, anxiety, and depression. Asperger’s, which would not technically be a problem but a “difference.” I live in this world, and in this world, no one’s going to cut my any slack for mental health issues or accommodate me for any potential Asperger’s. If I have Apserger’s, I don’t even want people to know because I think they would view me through the label of that lens rather than as a person with many facets.

Anyway, my problems don’t matter, and so I have to live up to “normal” standards if I’m going to get anywhere in this world. But I can’t. Oh, I’m pretty sure I can’t. I’m not strong enough.

I just keep feeling like everything’s going to come tumbling down.

And I feel so much hatred, mostly of myself. But then sometimes I also just hate every single person I run into.

For a few months, I’ve been meaning to write a post explaining my absence and explaining why any future posts may be sporadic. It’s mostly related to my isolationist tendencies, but there’s also the factor that I’ve been gone so long that I don’t know if I could catch up anymore. (And my embarrassing new-ish Supernatural fanfic hobby.) Maybe I’ll write that one later, but for now, I’m just writing this ramble because I need to get it out of my system.

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Every (Wo)man Can Be an Island

I wrote a Canvas post about my isolationist tendencies.

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Marooned in Myself

It’s hard to explain where my head space has been for the past few months. I don’t know what I should be saying right now. For the past few days, I keep coming on here to post then freezing and having nothing to say.

Well, at work, a few months ago we applied to have my job become a full-time one. The fiscal year begins in July, and since I haven’t heard anything about the matter, I assume it’s a no-go.

This is going to sound really childish, but I’ve always had a belief that things work themselves out for the best. In my life, that used to seem to happen, anyway. It’s also kept me going. But for the past year, things haven’t gone that way, and I’m just afraid I’m destined to fall. That belief is stupid, anyway. Loads of people don’t have things work out for them, so why should they for me? I’m not so damn special. Plus, the world often isn’t fair.

Ideally, I’d like to stay at my current job and have it be full-time. I’m decent at it. I like it there. I’m finally starting to feel like I belong. After two and a half years, which is kind of pathetic, but still. That’s the way I am. It’ll probably take me that long to feel comfortable someplace else.

I feel like this ideal is what’s best for me and my mental health. The pressure of starting over terrifies me. The idea of interviewing and looking for a new job terrifies me. That’s why I’m not assiduous at job-hunting.

For the past few months, I’ve been isolating. I continue to isolate. It’s like I live in this dream world in my mind and ignore large concerns in favor of small ones, only living from day to day. I drift. I let my mind be consumed by stories, both my own and those of others, whether that be in the form of books, movies, or TV shows.

And I like it.

But it can’t last. Bigger concerns will no doubt crash into it all one day. Plus, I feel hollow and alone. I can’t stay like that perpetually.

But I want to stay like this. Keep my anxiety at bay. Be consumed by fantasy because it’s all I have, because I don’t belong in this world.

The more I isolate, the more anxious I do become when I have to be around people. The more I just shut everything out.

The more I don’t read others’ blogs. I feel so guilty about it. I do care about the bloggers I follow. But I fear that maybe I’m lying to myself about that, because wouldn’t I stay more caught up if I did?

Yet I don’t. I continue to remain in my bubble. And the worst part is, I’m not even doing that badly. Just isolating. But perhaps that’s why I’m not doing too badly in the first place–I’ve inured myself into a self-contained isolationist world.

I don’t know. I don’t know what on earth I’m rambling about. But there you have it: the unlikeableness of me.

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Immersive

I like to completely immerse myself in almost everything I do. It helps me connect with the material, get work done. If I’m in the zone, I’m in the zone.

But there’s something dangerous about my predilection for immersion–it threatens to take me away from reality. This is why video-gaming entertainment would never be for me. (That, and the fact that I was never good at video games, nor did I enjoy them all that much.)

But I immerse myself in other things–books. Movies. TV shows. Food.

Anything can become an addiction, so much so that I will live inside that world rather than reality. Not  that I’m unaware of reality or ignoring my real-world responsibilities. Far from it, but my mind is elsewhere. Perhaps it’s not an addiction per se, but it’s something akin to addiction at least.

Blogging used to be one of those immersion activities. That’s one reason I don’t blog as much as I used to. It might not have been noticeable to anyone reading, but blogging had started to consume my life. I suppose there were signs, such as the fact that I occasionally mentioned that my blogging life seemed more real than my “real life.”

Writing is different. My stories, they’re an immersion experience, but they’re much more than that. By “immersion experience,” I mean something that I submerge myself in. While that happens with my stories, there’s also more to them than that. With them, I also take parts of myself and submerge them in the stories.

But with reading, it can be a different story. Sure, I absorb knowledge about writing styles and analyze what I’m reading, but that involves me burying myself in the book’s contents.

TV shows are easier to immerse myself in than movies. There are dozens of episodes, and the result is a TV show’s own intricate universe. It’s easy to get lost in that universe.

We all need a little escapism now and then. That’s why forms of entertainment exist. But I’m afraid, for me, it might go too far. It’s not something anyone would ever notice. I don’t seem to indulge in entertainment any more than a normal person would. (Food, maybe.) But my brain, my mind . . . it halfway lives elsewhere.

Sometimes I wish I could let the fantasy, whatever it is I’m immersing myself in, take over. Then I’d have an excuse for the fact that I’m often drowning in the real world.

I fervently want to live in an alternate reality. I want another life, not my own. Not because my life sucks–it’s not that bad, and there are tons of worse lives out there. But I just–I don’t know.

There’s a hollowness, an emptiness, inside of me that never goes away. There’s a sense of intense guilt that fucking never goes away.

I don’t want it, any of it. The loneliness. The knowledge of how abject I am.

No matter what I do, it never fucking goes away.

That’s why I’m so pathetic that I am compelled to immerse my mind elsewhere.

There’s nothing I can do to express the intensity of it all. I can’t act against myself; I’m too cowardly. I can stuff my face, but at the moment it’s not working as an act of self-destruction, but as an immersion experience. It sounds beyond pathetic, the fact that I will immerse myself in the taste for one split second, for each bite, and let that be all there is for that second.

I need to do something to punish myself, but I can’t. I can do nothing but wallow and cower.

The more the darkness consumes me, the more I immerse myself in other things, other things that my mind buries itself in, other things that can do nothing to counteract the darkness, that can in fact increase the darkness even as they give me one ephemeral moment in which I am free.

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Glimpses of the Past Week

This is not going to be cohesive, just a few snippets of things relevant to my past week.

I saw my pdoc Thursday. I told her about my steadily high levels of anxiety. It keeps me from sleeping at night because my jaw is constantly clenched. I have a perpetual urge to grind my teeth, and sometimes I feel a tingling in my teeth because the urge to chew is so strong. No matter what, I can’t see to relax my jaw. She prescribed me guanfacine, explaining to me some basic facts like it used to be a blood pressure medicine but sometimes it’s now prescribed for anxiety and ADHD, etc. We’ll see how that goes.

I haven’t been able to see the therapist in the past two weeks, and I’m a little sad because I thought we were going to talk about Asperger’s next time we saw each other. The first week, she had to cancel, though I don’t know why. She was out for some reason. This past week, I had to cancel because my plumbing needed fixing.

I’ve been thinking about this Asperger’s thing, and my mind has fixated on something the therapist said, that Asperger’s basically means a person is wired differently. I can’t quite articulate the import of this idea yet, but I feel like it could relate to me. Maybe this is why CBT is something that rubs me the wrong way–it assumes people inherently operate similarly, that thought structures/influences feeling. But as I told my last therapist, I can’t just believe something because I think it. I believe things only if I can both feel and comprehend them. She didn’t think that made much sense. It’s sort of like an intuitive method. I don’t believe something if I merely feel it, and I don’t believe something if I merely think it. I believe it somewhat, but not all the way. Skimming through some things on the Internet, I found something written by someone with Asperger’s, and that person said they had a similar way of forming beliefs. I can’t remember where I saw this now, but it gave me pause.

I’ve also discovered something else about Asperger’s that bothers me. There seems to be some content about how people with Asperger’s feel more deeply than others but that they just can’t express it (despite common conceptions). That sounds like me. From most of what I’ve read, though, people with Asperger’s lack empathy. As I’ve mentioned, I think I have more empathy than the average person. And if I have Asperger’s, I’m afraid it would imply that my empathy is somehow false, that my belief that I can easily understand other perspective is somehow false. What would this mean for me as a writer? Because that’s the force I draw on as a writer, and I think it’s something a writer has to possess. If I don’t have it, then there’s something not genuine about my writing. My creative writing, anyway.

I’ve been continuing to watch Supernatural. More slightly spoiler-ish rambling here. The episode “It’s  a Terrible Life” (Season 4, Episode 17) reminded me of myself in a way. The message was that being a hunter is something that’s in Dean’s blood, and he’ll find his way back to it no matter what. That’s how I feel about myself and my creative writing. It’s in my blood, and even when I foreswear it, for months or even years, I find myself coming back to it.

I think “On the Head of a Pin,” Season 4, Episode 16, is my favorite episode of all time. So far, anyway. There’s a lot that happens in it. At one point, Dean is torturing a demon, and the acting is superb. His expression is so cold, as if there’s nothing inside him. And what does it say about me that I thought it was kind of hot? There must be something wrong with me, lol.

I like Castiel a lot. Dean is still my favorite, though. Of course. And I’ve never liked Sam that much. I mean, he’s okay, but I much prefer Dean. I think I might be more like Sam than Dean, so what does that say about me, once again? However, I do think maybe I’m more like Dean than Sam emotionally. Maybe that’s why I find it easier to put myself in his place.

I think Season 2 is still my favorite season so far, but Season 4 is definitely spectacular as well.

Well, I rambled more than I meant to. I guess I just wanted to say these things.

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Anyone Other Than Me

Sometimes I wish I could be anyone other than me. I shouldn’t. My life isn’t so bad. But I am, and my destiny is to be completely alone, always.

I’ve known it ever since high school. I’ve known that, once I got out into the “real world,” I wouldn’t be able to function like an average human being, that I’d never make connections, ever, that my life would be one of neverending failure and isolation.

It is, but it’s because I’ve done it to myself.

But I can’t do otherwise. I can’t be anything other than what I am.

I can’t form connections with others. If anyone engages me in a conversation, my instinct is to flee. How am I ever going to find friends if all I do is run away?

But I can’t do otherwise. I get too nervous. I choke up, have nothing interesting to say. I enter Awkward Annie mode.

Then I’m afraid of the person eventually finding out how pathetic I am, the fact that I really have no friends, that I’ve lived here for over two years now without forming any connections.

If they knew that, then they’d know there’s something deeply wrong with me.

And even if that weren’t a factor, it’s just . . . I can’t form close bonds. I’m incapable of doing so.

I crave them so much, but they’re something I can never have. It’s impossible for me, like it would be impossible for me to magically become six feet tall. It’s not something that’s inside me.

I’m destined for a life of loneliness. All my dreams of making human connections are silly, childish. The idea of finding a “true love.” That’s not only childish, but it’s also something that can never be for me.

I have more empathy than the average person. Lately, on occasion it’s as if emotions radiate off of others and I can feel them. Yet no one will ever know that I have even an ounce of empathy because I can’t express it. I can’t even express my own emotions.

It’s not possible to dig them out of my soul.

I instinctively know it. If I live until I’m, say, sixty, I’ll have lived a life in which I’m always alone. My need for a human connection will never be met. Writing, reading, films, TV shows, all stories, they just serve as a poor substitute for something I will never have.

I’ve been feeling odd all day. Maybe this sounds idiotic, but I feel as if I’m on some predetermined trajectory, like a storyline that is manipulating me, keeping me in motion. And in this storyline, it’s certain that I’m destined for a life of coldness, one in which I receive no (or very little) of affection’s warmth.

Most other people get at least a semblance of that at some point in their lives.

And thus, I wish I could be other than me.

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I’m Back

Sort of.

The next three to four weeks will probably be hella busy. It’s the last few weeks of the semester, and I’ll have tons of assignments to grade. So that means keeping my indulgence in addictions to a minimum: blogging, Supernatural, probably reading, etc. I’m often not good at juggling tasks, and I want to try to get into creative writing again.

I have two short stories to finish and a novel to edit.

Actually, what I kind of want to do, since I’ve apparently become a fangirl addict, is write some Supernatural/Doctor Who crossover fanfiction. I imagine the boys going off to investigate a case, and then there’s the Doctor. Then Dean’s like, “Ghosts are one thing, but aliens?”

I’ve never written fanfiction in my life. Maybe I need help, ha. I confess I have read the occasional A Song of Ice and Fire fanfiction, but not for ages. Once, I went through a phase where I read Horatio Hornblower fanfiction.

Last night, I watched the Supernatural episode “Ghostfacers” and now I can’t get its song out of my head. It’s one of the most hilarious things ever:

(The link won’t embed or post as a straight-up link, so you’ll have to click to go to YouTube after pressing “play.”)

My favorite line: “Stay in the kitchen when the kitchen gets hot!”

Embarrassing admissions aside, I’d like to explain a little of how I reached this point.

If you’ve stopped by here over the past month, you’d know that I haven’t been doing well. I’m still not, really, but I think I’m better. I think I can face returning to blogland again. I can stop being negligent and read a few blogs. But I can’t be as present here as I’ve been in the past. As I mentioned, I’m often not good at time management. I have other things to do like work and creative writing. And of course trying to figure out how to heal. If that’s even possible. I’m such a mess and have been for a very, very long time.

How did I get better? I’m not sure. I can trace it to a couple of instances, but I’m not sure precisely how those instances helped.

First, there was this past Tuesday. My anxiety reached almost sky-high levels, and I was a quivering mess at work. I felt as if I could barely breathe, and my head was pounding. I seriously started to contemplate quitting my job and just lying around by myself, but I knew that wasn’t realistic, obviously. Perhaps I shouldn’t have gone to work that day, but it’s hard for me to know what my limits are. Besides, I somehow made it through, and to me that makes it seem that my anxiety couldn’t have been as bad as I thought it was. I’m just being melodramatic.

These days, my therapist appointments are on Tuesday afternoons. Right after work, I went to therapy. So far, this therapist is pretty great. I find it much easier to talk to her than I did to talk to the other ones I’ve seen; I don’t know why. Every week, I’d brought up my anxiety, but my anxiety just kept building and building. She pointed that out when I mentioned my anxiety once again this week. I told her about how anxious I’d been all day, how shaky I’d felt. We talked about my coping strategies, and the only one I could think of was trying to steady my breathing. That’s what I do, but it’s really only a stalling tactic until I can be alone and have a panic attack. It doesn’t eliminate my anxiety, just help me delay my reaction to it.

After the appointment, though, I felt better for some reason. Maybe because I didn’t have to work to hide my anxiety, yet I hadn’t been hiding it in my past therapy appointments. I didn’t actually have a panic attack while with the therapist, so that didn’t dispel my anxiety. Don’t get me wrong; it’s still there, and it’s still strong, but it’s somehow grown more manageable. (Knock on wood.)

A few days later, the weather started getting sunnier. That made me feel better, too, though I don’t know why. I don’t like warm weather, and I don’t have seasonal affective disorder. In fact, I quite like gloomy weather. For some reason, I’ve always found it adventurous and sometimes even fun.

I’m going to see if I can snap out of my fast food binging, too. We’ll see. Maybe it’ll happen naturally; if I try to force it, the craving only grows stronger.

Well, I don’t know when I’ll get around to reading blogs more regularly. I know it will be this week, just not which day. I’m going to try to make myself write a little every day (or edit); it’s easiest for me to write if I can make myself do a little every day.

And now, I’m going to go outside and try to write. I think I’ve earned it.

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