I Remember How This Feels

Trigger warnings: this post has references to passive suicidal thoughts and negative mental health. If you’re triggered by this content, please don’t feel like you have to read this; your health comes first.

I’ve been trying to deny all my feelings over the last week, to just shut it all down and function. During the weekend, I felt myself go so downhill that it was impossible to even pretend. I’m struggling and this is the worst I’ve seen myself for at least a year and a half. I only know that because I could never forget how I’d felt back then. Now I’m feeling it all again, it’s a huge shock. I’ve been angry, taking the anger out on people and just not very healthy whatsoever.

When I was halfway through Year 12, I pretty much hated everything and wanted to die the majority of the time. I was so unhappy that it was a struggle to even move. In terms of work, I barely met any deadlines and didn’t care enough to complete most of my homework. It was around this time that I quit French. A couple of months later, during my exams, I managed to pick myself back up. Ever since then, I’ve had a cycle of feeling so awful that I just couldn’t do anything but it was never as bad as it was last January. Until now.

I have these memories of sitting in my classes, barely able to work or to string a sentence together. I would desperately try and get through the fog of my head and to not cry, just not cry until it was over. I’d feel this cold terror, where I’d be hanging on to the thread of getting out of there and screaming. But by the time I could breathe, I’d gone blank; I didn’t feel a single thing but this aching emptiness. The only change now is that I’m better able to articulate it. Talking doesn’t feel impossible, just very tiring. Everything else – the sadness, the exhaustion, the not-quite-feeling-there, is back.

As I’ve mentioned in this post, I’ve gone to blind college for a year. That move is stressful enough but on top of my breakdowns, it’s turned into a shitstorm. I’ve had to mask how I’ve been feeling to everybody here and to friends outside of it; the motivation to do any work has just disappeared; I’m attempting to actively withdraw myself from social situations because I’m just too tired. It’s exactly how it felt in Year 12 but somehow magnified because I’m in such a small, residential environment. I can’t hide it whatsoever.

People have been supporting me a lot; Kel is a godsend and I couldn’t have done this without him. My friend Robin has been a lifesaver and my other friend, Pearl, came over to stay at the weekend. Rapunzel has been one of the only people who has managed to keep me grounded and recently, I’ve really started to try and have more conversations with people outside college like Red, Wren and Swan. Somehow, though, I’m still really bad: I’m still not coping, still don’t have any energy, still tired.

On paper, everything seems to be good: I’m in a great place, have met some amazing people, am actually enjoying my course and the personality, or side of myself, that I show to people seems to have it all together. So why am I feeling like this? I act so energetic, enthusiastic and organised that by the end of the day, I’ve got nothing left. I’ve stopped talking to so many people because I’m often too unwell or exhausted to keep up a conversation but because of the ‘happy’ way I’ve been acting, it’d feel like I was a fraud if I suddenly started acting how I truly feel.

I suppose that this must come from the agony of feeling isolated. Recently, because of my lack of talking to people outside of the college, I’ve felt alone and quite adrift from everything. A good way for me to get by when I have nothing else – no coping mechanisms that work, at least – is to talk to others and share in their happiness. It honestly feels like people don’t care any more and don’t want to talk to me, meaning I don’t find out things until weeks after they happen and so I can’t be happy for anyone. That means that the one thing I usually have left is just gone and it’s fucking overwhelming and horrible to feel this forgotten all the time. I may be just whining or being pathetic but it all just hurts at the minute, so I don’t have the energy to gain perspective. I haven’t started blaming myself for not talking yet but I’m pretty sure that will happen when I get a second to myself.

Having what I can only describe as a mental health relapse is one of the worst feelings. It doesn’t feel like I’ll get better, or as if people care, or as if anyone would care unless I spoke to them. I have a whole river of bitterness and fear inside my head and I just want it all to stop for a bit. I can barely function, running on very little sleep; I haven’t been eating well and I don’t have the mental capacity to look after myself properly. The most worrying thing, as my friend Rapunzel (who has managed to get me to vaguely talk about things and is a beautiful soul) said, is that I just don’t care any more. That not caring means that I stop talking to people and avoid even thinking about what’s happening, leading me to do anything to distract myself which then ends with me feeling sick and unpleasant.

Talking about it has got easier – it’s not like it was a year and a half ago, where I’d only talk in very toxic, short bursts. I now know how to get my emotions out; it’s just that I don’t have the energy. Writing it down has made it less overwhelming, I think, though nothing seems to help apart from resting and trying not to mentally collapse.

Perhaps, now, I feel a little clearer. It doesn’t feel like things are wailing in my head any more. Is that because I can write it all down? I don’t know. All I know is that I hate feeling like this and if this post was a reprieve for me, where I could let it out, then I’ll take it.

I hope that you’re all okay. I’ve been so silent because I just didn’t know how to talk. After speaking horrendously honestly to a friend yesterday, part of that blockade has broken. I just hope it can continue.

Now, I miss blogging intensely. At some point in the next few weeks, I want to be able to go back to a semi-regular posting schedule. For now, I’m going to have to concentrate on pulling myself back up a little.

I miss you all. How have things been?

Love from Elm 🙂

8 thoughts on “I Remember How This Feels

  1. You’ve survived this before, and you are beyond strong enough to do it again. I believe in you. Keep doing things that are helping you cope. Even if you don’t feel great about venting to friends or if you feel like writing is too much, try. All you can do is try. If you can’t talk to anyone else, try just talking aloud. To yourself. I know it sounds odd but sometimes your brain can’t hold everything, let it out. Just into the air. Sending you love and positive energy.
    -Dani ❤ ❤

  2. Ahh this is why blogging is so important – getting your thoughts out your head and onto the screen definitely rationalises them. Going back to old memories yet in new places can feel like a never-ending cycle and it really sucks but like others have said^^ if you’ve done it before, then I totally believe you can do it again 💛💛

  3. Mental health is about each individual day. I find it easiest to just focus on the day ahead rather than the bigger future. I think each day is an achievement. You can’t suddenly have good mental health, as some people expect, you can’t suddenly pull yourself out of the hole — but every day is worth appreciating. Just a single day. I’ve had awful mental health recently and haven’t spoken about it with people, but have blogged a little bit about it because that’s easier. I just feel like it’s impossible to talk to people about my problems anymore. I’m so glad you have friends you can talk to. Talking to people can be really great. Virtual hugs too 🙂 ❤️

  4. I know you’re going through a hard time right now, but just remember it will get better. I’m not really sure how to help you but I noticed that once you talk about it you feel better, so keep doing that. Talk to people you care about and who care about you. You’ll get through this, I believe in you. ❤
    Also, if you ever want to talk to me, you can send an email anytime. 🙂

  5. Awh Elm! I know it’s been ages since we spoke but I’m always here if you need a chat, would love a catch up at some point! Just remember you’re never alone, and you’re immensely strong and badass, as cheesy as it sounds you’re going to get through this and i promise you things will get better, you’ve got this girly and you’ve got so many people who’ve got your back! ❤ xxx

  6. elm!! being in a new place where you aren’t with all your old friends can be super hard, and can make everything worse for a bit!! remember that you are so strong and brave and wonderful. I’m always here if you want to chat (and have remarkably good response time) so feel free to reach out if you want to vent or complain or just talk about good things or anything in between. You’re incredible, don’t forget that ❤

  7. The change is hard but I know that you’ll feel better soon. Take time out whenever you need to put your mental health first, it’s the most important thing. I hope you feel better soon and that you have lesser awful cycles 💙

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