Robbed Me of My Joy

While I did my best to fight it, PTSD still robbed me of my joy.

Jonathan Arenburg
Jonathan Arenburg

Jonathan is a mental health blogger, published author, and speaker. He has appeared in numerous newspapers and has been a guest on many podcasts.

Well, I’ve finally done it. I am now a published author – a goal I’ve had since I started blogging with The Road To Mental Wellness two years ago. While it feels good to have something off my bucket list, unfortunately, the joy would be short-lived.

But John, shouldn’t you be happy? Well, normally, yes and at first, I was over the moon. But as fate would have it, my PTSD would end up enslaving me deep inside myself – a dark place that always numbs me with indifference. Sadly, the book pre-order excitement would meet my mental-health condition at the intersection of my life.

While it may be difficult for the mentally well to understand, it nonetheless is a reality. For me, and I’m sure many other sufferers too, it’s not what we want, nor is it a choice we would have eagerly requested Yet here we are.

I am constantly exhausted and sleeping…. a lot.

I mean, who would want to be robbed of the joy that comes with accomplishment? You can call it what you will, I know it’s the potent combination of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, robbing me of my joy.

The damage.

Of course, with anything in life, I faced consequences for such a combination. There’s the obvious downer, which is being robbed of the joy, in this case, realizing a dream of being a published author. But there are others. Take my personal life for instance; PTSD takes me out and makes me a passive observer in my own story. I know, shitty, right?

This scenario is pretty much where I am at now and for the last three or four days, I have sought refuge from the world in the safety of my bedroom – lasting only long enough outside its realm to promote the book and watch a bit of TV.


Front and back cover of the road to mental wellness - 8 sings your relationship is hurting your mental health.
Find out more below – Written for therapeutic release, published in hopes it helps you.

But what’s worse, is that this round of illness feels different for me and asking me to produce an answer will yield an “I don’t know”. What I do know is that I am short-tempered and nasty, level-ten nasty. And as if that weren’t enough, I am constantly exhausted and sleeping…. a lot.

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Personally, what’s most problematic for me is the unintentional brunt that my family must bear because of it; I wish I could do better. Someday I shall.

There is something that keeps me going.

When I stop to reflect on this experience, even now, as I fight my way through it, I find myself embracing what I am able to accomplish. Despite being a recluse, even in my own home, I was still able to promote the book Lemonade Stand Vol. III. This, I can be grateful for and use it as a catalyst to move forward, even though PTSD has robbed me of my joy, which I shall overcome.

If you are struggling, please go here: Crisis Services Canada

Jonathan Arenburg

Jonathan Arenburg is a mental health blogger, S speaker, writer, and published author; He is also the host of the mental wellness podcast, #thewellnesstalksHe has also appeared in the i'Mpossible's Lemonade Stand III. He has also been a contributing writer for Mental health talk, a column in his local paper. In addition, he has also written for the mental health advocacy organization; Sick Not Weak.Jonathan has also appeared on several mental health-related podcasts Including: A New Dawn, The Depression Files, Books and Authors, and Men Are Nuts. Since being put off work because of PTSD, Jonathan has dedicated his time to his mental wellness journey while helping others along the way.Educated as an addictions' counsellor, he has dedicated most of his professional life of eighteen years, working with those who have intellectual disabilities, behavioural challenges, and mental illness.He has also spent fifteen years in the volunteer fire service helping his community.His new book (2021), “The Road To Mental Wellness,” goes into detail about his life-long battle with depression, anxiety and more recently, PTSD. In it, he hopes to provide insight on how mental illness cultivates over a lifetime and, if not recognized and treated, how it impacts the entirety of one's life; right from childhood into the adult years. Jonathan lives with his two children in Nova Scotia, Canada.

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