Lately I’ve noticed that I’m starting to struggle mentally. It’s frustrating because I’ve been doing well and been very productive, but that all seems to be slipping away.
I haven’t been eating a healthy diet, I haven’t kept up with my blog, I haven’t showered as much, and everything seems a more daunting and harder than usual. It’s frustrating for me because I feel like I’ve made so much progress. Sometimes I’m able to get so much done and now not so much.
It’s probably because I’ve been putting too much on my plate. I’ve been highly functional this past year, and I’ve tried to say yes to every new opportunity I have, but I’m starting to think it’s more important to say no. At least right now when I’m struggling.
Room mom at my son’s preschool? Yes.
Volunteer with NAMI Greater Corpus Christi? Yes.
Make mental health videos for my favorite state representative? Sure.
Become Communications Manager for NAMI GCC? Absolutely.
There’s a lot more, at least it’s a lot to me. I have to remember that while saying yes is good, I have to recognize my limitations. I can’t just do it all. My anxiety and depression are hard to manage, and I never know when it’s going to get worse, like now. I try to make hay while the sun shines, but it’s so much harder to do right now.
The only thing I can do is set boundaries â€” this is especially important now that the holidays are coming up, and it’s going to get more stressful. I need to be honest with myself, take breaks and focus on what I can do (in a healthy way).
I know these feelings I have are overwhelming now, but it’s just temporary. All the bad moods, anxiety and depressive episodes are all temporary. My true state is happy and productive even though it doesn’t feel like it at times. It’s OK to not be OK.
â€œDepression is like a bruise that never goes away. A bruise in your mind. You just got to be careful not to touch it where it hurts. It’s always there, though.â€
â€• Jeffrey Eugenides, The Marriage Plot
And right now, I’m just not OK.
Now’s the time to fall back on healthy habits I put in place while I did feel better: going to weekly therapy, taking all my medications, eating healthy, getting enough sleep, practicing self-care and asking for help when I need it. And taking breaks!
I have to put the work in, especially now. That’s hard to do when I just feel like giving up on everything, but I’ll never get better if I don’t do the work.
I can do this. I can do hard things. I’ve done them before, and this time is no different.
Stay in the light, my friends.