Today is a “BAD” day. Yup, all capitals bad.
There is something distinctly upsetting about finding thoughts in your head that you had gotten rid of. Like a doctor finding a case of measles after declaring the country measles-free. My mental illness was an infection, something I fought with my body and mind to irradicate from the borders of this body. Today, wallowing in pain and loneliness, came the out of focus thought, “I want to die.” I have spent years policing the streets of my mind and the crime rate had dropped to almost nothing, now this. I dusted off the arsenal.
- Feed yourself. Sometimes it is something so simple to fix the big problem.
- Drink some water. Constant aches and pains can tumble anyone into depression.
- Move. Okay, so right now that’s a lot harder than usual.
- CBT, scan your thoughts. Is there something there that can be targeted?
- As always whip out that DBT toolbox, let’s go!
- Grounding! Ice cubes are my favorite.
- Casual distractions. That TV show you like, writing, reading?
I hobbled to the kitchen and made a sandwich. My pulse was high, anxiety rearing its ugly head or maybe dehydration. I got half the sandwich down when my body started to refuse. Okay, anxiety is making me nauseous. Sip a large glass of water to help a headache. What is going on with the anxiety spike? Yeah, I woke up from a nightmare, I did grounding before I got out of bed. A common enough occurrence with pesky PTSD. The grounding should have worked. I am in pain. Cool, I got this, take some pills. Choke them down even though I swear I am going to throw up. Do some light stretching from physical therapy to help the pain. Sit down and turn the TV on to the latest series I’m devouring on Netflix. Antsy? Yeah, anxiety isn’t going to let me go. Throw out a lifeline, text the boyfriend, call my sister. And now the house is too big and I am too alone. I hobble to find one of the cats. Sinking heaviness on my chest, probably anxiety. Mentally remind myself to make an appointment because this has to be remedied.
I am coping. Coping is hard. It only gets harder when thoughts turn to self-injury. I have spent years fighting this. I am not letting a downswing pull me away from all the progress I have made.
My final reminder is for myself, 2017 is the year for self-care. It was the only promise I made to myself for the new year. Time to get to it.