I don’t write personal stuff on this blog normally. It’s just not my thing.
Other people blog about every little thing in their personal lives, every fleeting thought in their head (and by “blog” I alos include Facebook updates, tweets, etc.). Some people are comfortable with that level of sharing. I never have been, whether in real life or online.
I think that’s been part of the problem.
Some of the people who know me – very few of the people who know me – know that I’ve struggled with mental health issues pretty much all my life. Every so often, they’ve bubbled close enough to the surface that more people realise something’s not right. On those occasions, they often know more about how there’s something up with me than I do myself.
Recently, I’ve been kidding myself I was getting better. I think maybe I was just getting better at keeping the surface bubble-free.
In the past few months, things have been going from bad to worse for me inside. The black cloud that was above my head was pushed down, compressed, small enough for it to hide away inside where, God willing, nobody else could see it. Rather than fighting it, I swatted it away with other things: with throwing myself into work, then into finding and changing jobs, then throwing myself into the new job. Evenings would be spent at the theatre or the cinema, where I could escape reality and pretend to myself and the world that I had a place in it.
But as soon as I was alone, that cloud would erupt out of me. Every last piece of energy I had was spent telling myself how awful I was. How it wasn’t worth asking people for help, because help was the last thing I deserved. And if I put on a brave face, if I told people who said they were concerned about me the platitudes they wanted to hear, maybe they’d just leave me alone.
I’ve lied to a lot of people about how I’ve been feeling. Including myself. Even this weekend, I’ve been queuing up links on my social media accounts on the same variety of subjects that I regularly post about, so that people see stuff from the me that I want them to know, the me that is happy, the me that feels some self-worth. The me I would so much like to be. A me that I don’t know exists any more, and that feels lost forever.
The last year or so feels like a nightmare that occasionally let itself dream of a better life. And now it’s waking up, and is a nightmare again.
I feel like I’m running out of options. And among those options are ones that I know other people are going to not want me to take. But ultimately it’s my call. And I’m sorry.