This post is a bit of a long one, so strap yourself in!
As another year already starts to move by so fast, and the bullshit motivational and inspirational (although I’m sure very sincere when posted on 010115) New Year resolution posts slowly start to disappear from our social media feeds, the grind of our daily reality sets in.
For some, the desire to create a better future, get a sexy body, live healthy, make more money, be a nicer person blah blah blah whatever the resolution is, that may still be strong. But for most, after the first or second week of a new year, we’re all back to our normal lazy unmotivated selves.
I mean if these things are really that important to us, we should be actively working on making these changes on a bloody daily basis, not just at the start of the year!
After the absolute $#@* of a year I had with my health which impacted on every area of my life. It was time for a serious shake up. I had already slowly started to make those changes (knowing something wasn’t right) but it all came to a head when I ended up in hospital early December as a result of lithium toxicity from being poisoned by the same pharmaceutical medications I was prescribed by specialists that were supposed to be making me better.
After 6 years of taking copious amounts of drugs, going to therapy and doing all the things I was told I needed to do (and would have to do for the rest of my life, to manage my illness and be well), After 6+ years of doing what I believed to be was the RIGHT thing, doing the RIGHT thing nearly killed me.
Needless to say it kind of makes you put things into perspective and re-evaluate shit in your life lol.
Fast forward almost two months, I’m med free (YAY) and having spent serious time doing rehabilitation recovering from my little trip to the hospital (kidney failure, underactive thyroid, blurred vision and neurological function impairment) I’m a whole new woman and ready to start my life again with my soul mate by my side.
I’ve had to deal with the anger and all the emotions I felt at “the system” and my team of “specialists” that were supposed to be looking after me and giving me the right dosages and medications. The lack of support from which I thought was friends and some family members, during such a horrible and stressful time and the realisation that I had very few real genuine people in my life. Now, I’m learning to deal with life un-medicated, which may sound strange but I’m now back to be being a human with raw emotions that aren’t tainted by drugs, it’s a bizarre feeling to have to be in control of my emotions again but it’s been great. No episodes, no rage, I’ve been a bit more of a sook than I remember lol but I’m sure I’ll harden back up in time!
This was a chance for my partner and I to not so much as start again, but to create the life we desired with a brand new outlook. A chance to wipe the slate clean and work out what we wanted in our life, as well as who we wanted in our life and to take back control.
With all the therapists and specialists and medications, our world (especially mine) was consumed by my illness. How could it not be? Pills in the morning, pills at night, checking to make sure my scripts were filled and I didn’t run out of my meds. Doctors appointments, Psychologists appointments, and Psychiatrists appointments, Blood tests. Talking about my triggers and my emotions all the time. The cautious and insincere How do I feel’s? Am I ok’s? All the fucking time. How could it not consume me. I became my illness.
What sort of a life is that?
After my hospitalisation we decided I didn’t want that anymore, I didn’t need it. That wasn’t who I was and I wasn’t going to let it define me anymore.
I always thought I knew who I was and I was strong, and I am. But along the way, I did lose myself. Not entirely, but I was definitely hiding amongst all the bullshit and the many Chiefs that were managing my life. I was constantly questioning who I was as a person, wanting to be “normal” and accepted. Trying to keep up with the Joneses, so that my bipolar wasn’t an issue. I was and am still bothered by the stigma associated with it. Honestly, it sucks, because it shouldn’t even be an issue.
I felt like I was continuously trying to maintain a certain type of image to be accepted, both in life and of course on social media, which is where my work predominately lies, in an industry that is hugely image based. It was a constant battle between trying to find a niche and fighting to be myself without the judgement affecting me. I realised I just couldn’t do it anymore. And I wasn’t getting my message or the real me across anyway. I was just letting people down and putting more pressure on myself than was needed.
I felt like I was completely flailing and totally failing. I remember saying to my partner one night. Is this it? Is this my life? And feeling so helpless and hopeless, trapped by my illness, not understanding why I was still so unstable and my health was still deteriorating, even though I was “doing all the right things”.
Now that the “right thing” was removed from the equation, I was free. Free to make my own choices. I hadn’t had that in so long.
I definitely had the “poor me’s” on occasion, how could I not? But I never felt like a victim. I knew when things got really bad, that this too shall pass. I had always overcome so much that I knew I would bounce back, even when it felt impossible. I was a survivor. But I never gave up that things would get better. The universe never gave me more than I could handle. I had faith in that.
Yeah, I’m a little bit silly. That’s who I am at the core. Mental illness or not. I am vulgar, I talk too loud and a bit too much, I say inappropriate things and sing along to the songs playing in the grocery store. I don’t really care what I wear when I leave the house and will talk to anyone about anything. I ask a lot of questions, most of them stupid, but I’m a curious critter. I’m also incredibly loving and loyal to a fault, witty (well we all think so don’t we?!), sexual, ambitious, overly trusting, adventurous, compassionate and not a very good house wife lol.
But I’m the same as most people I want love, laughter, good friends, family, happiness, good health and prosperity in my world and having lost control of my life for so long there was only one way to get. Make it happen – posting positive quotes and a few memes wasn’t going to do jack shit. It was time for action.
So my boyfriend and I made the decision that 2015 was going to be all about that, making it happen. We were going to open ourselves up to new opportunities that we believed in, I was staying med free – clean living all the way, lots of mutual love and support and we were taking action to create the life we wanted!
I’m welcoming this year with open arms and an open heart and looking forward to sharing it all with you!
Stay tuned for our big news on the first step on how we started to make that happen!
PS. I’m looking to work with a new creative team, so if you’re interested I’d love to hear from you!