shocked female worker in modern workplace

But you’re too young

How Many times have I heard, “But You’re too young?”

Looking back on my mental health journey, I can do so with the satisfaction of knowing that I’ve tried my best. Working to tackle my mental illnesses has not been easy. Yet despite this, there are those who believe that I will make a full recovery. Not only will I beat this, they, see myself back at work. Perhaps the most famous tagline I hear is “but you’re too young”. Meaning I have many more years to be productive citizen.

It’s certainly true that in my past, I was quite proud of the fact that I was a “worker”. Indeed, I could handle tons of busy on my plate. I loved keeping myself busy and if I had my way today, I would still be running constantly; aw, to have the energy to go and go and go.

How to customize your life when mentally ill.

But if I were being realistic, my battle with mental illness has lasted well over a decade; in that time, I have literally gone to war, doing whatever it takes to kick mental illness’s asses.

This battle, is of course far from over; however, I am starting to lose faith that I will ever return to the person I once was. Perhaps the most important question here is; who was I as a person when I had bountiful amounts of energy? Was it a natural inclination towards wanting to be busy, or was I trying to run a burden that was much stronger and faster than I?

Read. What’s in your mental wellness toolkit?

Truthfully, I have the luxury of looking back and therefore I feel like, well I wasn’t formally diagnosed for much of my battle, I was indeed running from myself. It’s interesting because I was oblivious to it for so many years.

Although one cannot change the past, it is still influential in the way we conduct ourselves now and into our future life choices. In my case, my propensity to be going full tilt has most likely lowered my tolerances for, not only the world around me but my ability to navigate through it with sufficient energy to be “successful” in a traditional sense. Thus, my choices I made in my younger years, have impacted the course of my future.

So, when people say; “but you’re too young,” I gently remind them that being disabled either mentally or physical knows no age limit. Trust me, I’ve tried to just “get over it” but it turns out that, factually, PTSD doesn’t work that way.

The Road To Mental Wellness is made possible in part by readers like you… thank you for your support.

While it was yet to be determined whether I shall be permanently disabled or somehow negotiate a truce with my mental health conditions; I am actively seeking ways that allows me to once again take on the world with strength and vigor. I must nonetheless, prepare for the very real possibility that I will have to customize how I move forward.

Want to hear others talk about their wellness journey? Go to The Depression Files.

If I were a betting man, I would bet that many of you are staring at the same crossroads in your lives. My advice? The life you were accustomed to is disappearing in the mirror of time, you can in fact, be productive and find meaning in your life. Sure, it may not be at full throttle but from my point of view, fulfilling passion is very obtainable. Just don’t let them push you back to where you know you can’t go; don’t let that saying but you’re too young set you up for failure by pushing you back into a world that you know you can’t handle.

Remember, you and you alone have a choice where you put your energy. Moreover, you are the only one who knows how much energy you have to give, if you know moving forward looks different from the conventional norm, advocate for yourself, you know yourself better than anyone. You’re ready for this change in life and be sure that you fight for it.

Checkout the book I helped to write:

Lemonade Stand: Vol. III 

Created by Josh Rivedal and Kathleen Myre, Lemonade Stand: Vol. III is a compilation of 20 stories from those who have served in the emergency services and the military.  In it, the authors talk about their battles with PTSD, a debilitating and for many, a life-long mental illness.  So, if you are from the military or emergency service’s, perhaps this book can help you combat the feelings of isolation and fear that frequently comes with post-traumatic stress disorder. Sometimes, just knowing that there are others out there, just like you, can provide you with the strength and courage to speak up and or get the help you need. The intention of this book is to help with that…. You’re not alone.

Also, Lemonade Stand: Vol III was written to help combat the stigma that often accompanies mental illness, best of all, it attempts to give all you served their countries and communities a voice… Which is amazing!

Lemonade stand
Order today

If you are struggling please go here for help: Crisis Services Canada

OR

Checkout our Mental Health Resources Page

Contact me on my Facebook page: The Road To Mental Wellness

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As long as I can see the beauty

As Long As I Can See The Beauty

As long as I can see the beauty that surrounds me, I believe I can keep going.

When I was young, I mistakenly believed that life was going to be a relatively straight path. I mean, don’t we all? After all, we are told from a very early age. We are told, find a career we love, get educated for it and then, boom! Life happens. What’s next? Well, not too far down the road, we find the person Disney tells us we will live with happily ever after.

While this may be true for some, for many of us, we look at this in retrospect and say; “What a load of crap”. Nonetheless, most of us follow the path society conditions us for. The trouble is, we fail to give any thought into one very important and crucial fact; Life is equal parts painful.

Is modern life causing mental illness?

The belief that adulthood is the promised fairy tale land is, in my opinion, the driver that makes life’s actual reality so much more difficult. How do we defend ourselves from something we weren’t prepared for?

I am also inclined to believe that being slapped around by the painful realization that life can cut you deep; can make us more susceptible to mental illness. Man, life’s so much harder than one is led to believe, No wonder we are sick

Unfortunately for some, mental health disorders seem to be more intense. I feel like, from my experience, that being blind sided by mental pain is made worse by the lack of resilience.

Building resilience to fight mental illness.

I have reached this conclusion simply because if when we don’t have the mental tools at our disposal to deal with the harsher realities in life, we tend not to have strength to draw from to deal with them.

As long as I can see the beauty
Photo by Rifqi Ramadhan on Pexels.com – As long as I can see the beauty

So, speaking for myself, I never imagined that I would end up with post-traumatic stress disorder; not for one second of my life. But sadly, PTSD and I have become constant travel companions down this road of life.

Because I bought into the idea that life was predetermined and more or less a template for us all; dealing with the symptoms of mental illness have been much more excruciating and thereby so much tougher than I ever would have imagined.

It’s safe to say that the lack of resilience was certainly part of the problem, my strong sense of denial also played a major role. These two factors have both contributed to my demise and thus has spun my life out of control and into the realm of disability.

Want to hear the stories of people who are suffering from mental health conditions? Go to A New Dawn podcast and have a listen.

I guess the proper question here is, “what’s the damage?”. I have rightfully concluded, that it has added time on to my sentence towards recovery. While this is most certainly the Fate I’ve been handed, as long as I can see the beauty that surrounds me everyday I know that I will survive. I am fortunate to live in a very beautiful part of the world and each path I take here renews my sense of purpose and commitment to my healing; I shall see the end of the road to mental wellness.

The Road To Mental Wellness is made possible in part by readers like you… thank you for your support.

It is my hope that you will also be able to find the beauty that surrounds you. No matter how tiny it may be, it is still strong enough to lift the heart and cleanse the soul. All you have to do is look for it. It’s all around you to be found.

As long as I can see the beauty all around me, I believe that I will be ok”.

Jonathan Arenburg.

Checkout the book I helped to write:

Lemonade Stand: Vol. III 

Created by Josh Rivedal and Kathleen Myre, Lemonade Stand: Vol. III is a compilation of 20 stories from those who have served in the emergency services and the military.  In it, the authors talk about their battles with PTSD, a debilitating and for many, a life-long mental illness.  So, if you are from the military or emergency service’s, perhaps this book can help you combat the feelings of isolation and fear that frequently comes with post-traumatic stress disorder. Sometimes, just knowing that there are others out there, just like you, can provide you with the strength and courage to speak up and or get the help you need. The intention of this book is to help with that…. You’re not alone.

Also, Lemonade Stand: Vol III was written to help combat the stigma that often accompanies mental illness, best of all, it attempts to give all you served their countries and communities a voice… Which is amazing!

Lemonade Stand
Order today

If you are struggling please go here for help: Crisis Services Canada

OR

Checkout our Mental Health Resources Page

Contact me on my Facebook page: The Road To Mental Wellness

Today is your day
Yesterday, you found yourself too heavy to get on with the day. …
Love and loath
The fire service and I suspect it's true of all emergency services, …
Depressed State Of Mind
When in a depressed state of mind, it's even more imperative that …
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With the Biden win in the United States, we are seeing the …
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The Long Standing Battle

How I survive my long-standing battle with PTSD

As the early morning darkness yielded to the light of the early day; I awoke with a feeling of terror and dread… Another PTSD nightmare. As if my broken slumber wasn’t enough, I have to contend with what is, so far, a hyper-sensitive day.

When I suffer my way through a night like these, the powers of PTSD overtake me and usually write off my entire day following. I am, sadly, at its mercy. I’m not going to lie, I am tired of mental illness and it’s long-standing battle.

What it’s like to have PTSD

photography of person walking on road
Photo by Leo Cardelli on Pexels.com

Fortunately, there is a silver lining to this chaos, always look for the silver lining; this solace comes from my repetitive onslaught that my mental health condition forces me through. I know, I known, how can having the mental tar beat out of you constantly have a positive side.

The Road To Mental Wellness is made possible in part by readers like you… thank you for your support.

Well, it took me a long time to discover what it was but when I did, the answer was quite simple. I am forty-four right now and therefore, this is far from my first dance with the mental illness devil; but guess what? Despite my battle that rages deep within, I’m still here. Yes, each and every time, I’ve come out the victor. So I guess one could say I’m a survivor.

While this may be true, there have been many times on my road to mental wellness, I have thought, “this is it, the moment the unrelenting symptoms finally win the war;” yet here I am. So far, I’m batting a thousand. My story, while not an easy one to live with, it has, nonetheless, provided me with gratitude for life. Furthermore, my love for family and respect for friends, inoculates me to a degree from doing any more harm to myself.

With that said, knowing that I come out on the other side alive and well, empowers me to plow through days like today. There WILL be better times ahead.

My friends, if you look back on your worst days, I bet it felt like you were destined to be remain in that state forever; that the mental illness monster had finally won the long-standing battle, yet it has not. You are here and you got through it! Being symptomatic doesn’t mean it’s the end, it means that you are a mental health warrior that will live to fight another day.

Lemonade Stand: Vol. III 

Created by Josh Rivedal and Kathleen Myre, Lemonade Stand: Vol. III is a compilation of 20 stories from those who have served in the emergency services and the military.  In it, the authors talk about their battles with PTSD, a debilitating and for many, a life-long mental illness.  So, if you are from the military or emergency service’s, perhaps this book can help you combat the feelings of isolation and fear that frequently comes with post-traumatic stress disorder. Sometimes, just knowing that there are others out there, just like you, can provide you with the strength and courage to speak up and or get the help you need. The intention of this book is to help with that…. You’re not alone.

Also, Lemonade Stand: Vol III was written to help combat the stigma that often accompanies mental illness, best of all, it attempts to give all you served their countries and communities a voice… Which is amazing!

Lemonade stand
Order today

If you are struggling please go here for help: Crisis Services Canada

OR

Checkout our Mental Health Resources Page

Contact me on my Facebook page: The Road To Mental Wellness

Today is your day
Yesterday, you found yourself too heavy to get on with the day. …
Love and loath
The fire service and I suspect it's true of all emergency services, …
Depressed State Of Mind
When in a depressed state of mind, it's even more imperative that …
End of a nightmare
With the Biden win in the United States, we are seeing the …