As I entered the final week of the election, where I was a volunteer, I experienced a gradual decline in my mental health. In contrast, the week leading up to the election, I was feeling well, mentally and was well for the best part of two weeks. It was great to be freed from the feelings of threat, stress and near-constant anxiety. I never say it out loud but when I am feeling well I am always so hopeful that psychological tournament has been mysteriously extinguished.
Sadly, No, being out of the safety of my home where quiet and feelings of safety reign supreme, the exposure took a hammer and chisel to this happy reprieve from my minds struggles and by the end of it, my startle response was a constant seven or eight and the consequence of exposing my mental health to the onslaught of noise, sirens and constant busy have demonstrated to me that I am not where I had blissfully thought I was.
So, what does this experience teach me, teach you? Well, there’s more than one way to look at the experience and its outcome. I could feel defeated at the knowledge that the periods of mental wellness always fades like the sunset as it is overtaken by the night’s darkness, or I can acknowledge that I can’t always have sunshine and roses and understand, that when a period of post-traumatic stress and or depression blanket me in their symptoms, I have little choice but to ride the wave until I hit the shores of calm, happier points in time.
When in the throws of the heavy, exhausting feelings of mental illness, I must keep in mind that I will be granted tempory leave from my mind’s tournament. Perhaps most importantly, I have to be good with that, the way the cards have been dealt.
when I’m able to do that, I feel like I live a fuller, more manfully life because when I’m feeling well I don’t throw myself forward in time by saying, “This good time won’t last.” Instead, I live in the moment using mindfulness
If you are struggling please go here: Crisis Services Canada