Today has been interesting to say the least, and it's only midday!
I awoke to a bit of mean message, you can find it on my FB page here, I don't want to cover it again :)
Let me tell you what I've learnt today.
As scary as it has been to air this journal so publicly, it has been incredibly therapeutic. As I type each day, I am learning so much about myself, my triggers and how I can deal with this struggle in a healthy way.
I have learnt that there are many many more of us out there, dealing with depression, silently, feeling very alone. Even if they don't comment, they often message me privately and share their own story.
I have learnt that "admitting" to having a mental illness doesn't have to ruin your reputation, as I feared it might. While I'm sitting here, thinking that people are going to start seeing me as this miserable woman, someone they cannot trust or take seriously, I'm also learning that the beautiful, happy part of me is still there. She does come out, often actually, but sometimes the chemicals in my brain try to take her down, and sometimes they succeed. And that is why I must fight to keep her alive. And why you must fight to keep the beautiful part of yourself alive too.
While I'm feeling positive and relatively upbeat, I'm actually not having a good mental health day..
I know how confusing that sounds, but if you're feeling positive, how can you also be depressed? I wish I could answer that, but I actually can't even explain it to myself. I'm actually smiling as I'm typing, because while I'm typing I'm seeing a flood of supportive messages, and having a beautiful conversation with one of my closest friends. BUT, in the back of my mind, and in the pit of my tummy, I'm holding back tears. I'm overwhelmed. I'm STILL having thoughts of, well you're having a good day, but it's a fluke, because actually you're worthless and you're never really going to be successful. This good feeling is temporary, it will go away, and you will once again, be without your motivation because you're not really good enough to be successful.
The big S word...
I flippen know I'm not worthless, I know I'm good at what I do, but I can't get rid of those thoughts. And every now and then, not every day, I wonder if people's lives would be easier, and less negative, without me in it. Maybe, if they didn't have to deal with me, they would be happier.
Now here's where it gets real, and I haven't mentioned this yet, because it's heavy. Feeling suicidal, does not necessarily mean that you actually want to end your life. It doesn't mean you're planning anything, or even thinking of planning anything. For me anyway, more often than not, it's just the persistent thought that it might be better for everyone if you went away. And once again, no matter how illogical I realise those thoughts are, they persist. I KNOW how many people love me, how many would miss me, how much my husband and son need me. I KNOW.
Mental illness is evil. It will try to convince you of a million things you know aren't true. It's chemical.
In closing for today...
Thank you, to everyone that reads this. Thank for all the love and support. I don't know if I'll be able to keep going for the whole month, but I promise to try. If you are struggling too, please get in touch if you feel like you have no one else to talk to. If you're not getting help yet, please do, not just for your own sake, but for those around you. I know it can make you feel like you're alone, but it affects those around you as well.
Alrighty, Day 3!
I was up at 6am with little man today, but feeling positive and energetic. I made sure to get dressed AND put on makeup. Seems silly, but this is an important step to helping myself get going when I get back home, no reason to get back into bed because I'm dressed. I forced myself, do your makeup, put in your contact lenses. Out the door!
Once I got back, again, I sat with my cup of coffee outside, it's still super early, so I don't need to be at my computer just yet, I can just breathe, nothing is expected of me right now. I'm still feeling pretty happy and energetic, but the fear that it could disappear at any moment is there, so I start saying to myself: "Today is going to be a good day", "Good things are going to happen", "You're going to have a good day". At this point I feel insane, why are you motivating yourself? You have nothing big planned, just a regular day of work. Chill out. But I do need to say this, I need to remind myself that I need to keep my momentum going.
I want to remind you that each of these days that I am documenting are not unique, I have had these sorts of days 100 times before, but this is the first time I am putting it in black and white for all to see.
I start working, Top Model first. Creating a nice video to use in a Facebook ad and get some new excitement going for our upcoming semifinal. It's been such a fun project to work on! I really enjoy creating content too. Videos, posters, graphics, websites, LOVE it.
At about 11am, I can feel the fatigue setting in, which is super annoying, but I decide to make a cup of coffee and get some fresh air. One shall not nap today! Also of note: I actually had breakfast today. You might be thinking, ok, well who cares? I do. I will spend the whole day feeling hungry because I couldn't be bothered to make food, I can't decide what I want to eat, or I've convinced myself that I don't need to eat. A small bowl of muesli and yoghurt is a victory.
It's been a productive day!
I have had to motivate myself away from napping for the last 3 hours, I don't know what it is about antidepressants but sometimes they give me insomnia and sometimes I'm incredibly fatigued. It's now 13:50 and I've also just had a ham roll for lunch. Another victory, given that as I mentioned before, I usually don't eat, and only eat a bit at dinner. I'm functioning like a normal human today!
It's also been a productive few hours, I've updated my various websites, booked a new retainer client (2nd this month!) and come up with another new idea, among other small tasks that I have managed to get through, which is great! I have also been booked for a shoot on Thursday which is awesome :)
So overall, a good day, still a few hours to go, but I'm loving a day of positivity and progress!
I caved and napped for an hour, from 4-5pm. I was just becoming too unproductive and staring at my laptop not accomplishing anything. At 5 when I got up I felt SUPER guilty, but I tried to remind myself that I need to be gentle on myself so I had another cup of coffee and sat outside. I did more work until 6pm, Steven and Deon arrived home and I've now started dinner and the food is in the oven while I finish this post.
It's been a good day overall, much more positive and productive than the last two days. I hope it lasts, but you never know. I will continue working into the evening to suck as much as I can out of this positive opportunity.
Go back and read my previous entries :)
EDIT - 21:25
So the evening has been filled with anxiety, depression and frustration. Came out of nowhere. I went out to get chocolate and felt myself driving really slowly, staring into space. When I stopped my car outside my house, I couldn't get out, I just sat there. Numb. In that moment, everything came together and overwhelmed me from the beginning. The stress of the last year, the struggle of my mental state and my emotions, marriage, motherhood, finances. Just all sitting on me like a ton of bricks I cannot escape from. I decided to message a close friend, and as always, she had me stitches, and I'm reminded how important these friendships are. I didn't tell her how stressed I was feeling, I just reconnected with her and we ended up planning a weekend away. I can't wait. Wine, sunshine, girl time. Necessary!
I'm going to do some work now, I need to distract my busy brain.
Good night! x
Before I started typing this entry for today, I was worrying if it was a good idea to continue to be this honest about my day to day struggles with depression. Is this not bad for my "brand". Am I shooting myself in the foot here? I don't know, I might be. However, I also think it's vital that people see this, and understand how many people are going through this.
I just happen to have the luxury of doing it from home.
Steven only fell asleep at about 22:00 last night, I lay with him until that time so by the time he was asleep, my night was over so I went to bed. Not a bad thing, as it meant I woke up feeling relatively refreshed when he got up at 6:30. He was grumpy because he hadn't slept enough but I managed to get him giggling by the time his dad left to take him to school.
I decide not to go back to bed, make a cup of coffee and get out the notebook. It's raining outside so between making notes and drinking coffee, I watch the rain, hoping it will rain enough to help the drought a bit before summer officially arrives. Starting to get cold, so I continue to write from bed. I watch a couple of Gary V episodes to spark some motivation, make some good notes and to-do's, and suddenly, feeling very overwhelmed at 9am, I close my eyes and fall asleep.
Awake at 11am again, and in front of my laptop. I see the money I have been putting aside into my savings account to keep it safe was taken my FNB for outstanding fees. Didn't know they could just take my savings, so now I'm pissed and feeling seriously down. My brain - "even when you try to do the right thing, you get screwed".
Along with being pissed about FNB just taking my savings, I'm also pissed at myself for feeling so sorry for myself. I deactivate my Facebook account so that I can "unplug" from everything, and set my Whatsapp to Do not Disturb. I need to focus, and take action, before my whole freakin life falls apart. Dammit Keri, you're better than this shit, get it together!
I reactivated Facebook just 30 minutes later, because, well I need it to do business. My pages cannot go unattended and I can't just disappear. It is now 2pm, and I have sent a whole bunch of emails for Power Woman Project and setup our calendar of events for 2018, so feeling great about that! A plan is made and further planning can go into making the courses amazing. YES! Feeling awesome. Here comes the anxiety, oh yes, I forgot to take my meds. Ok check, sorted.
There's still 3 hours of this day left before I start the "mom shift". The plan is to reply to some emails, do whatever else is outstanding to ease the anxiety of knowing I have things pending, get dressed, and tidy the house. I'm also going to attempt to get dinner going before I leave to fetch Steven if I can, just means that one more thing has been dealt with.
I plan on working on my courses tonight too and sorting out some bookings for talks.
Not a horrible day, a little better than yesterday, but I managed to pull myself off the cliff, so I can call it a successful day.
Go back to the Blog home page and read my previous entries
Do NOT tell a depressed person that they have nothing to be sad about.