playing pretend: it’s fun, but it’s fake.

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Too many minutes, days, weeks, and months of feeling angry, bored, frustrated, lonely, overwhelmed, insecure and anxious while simultaneously fighting to hide any outward appearance of being upset or imperfect have left me playing a long, wicked game of pretend. Some crazy and terrible things have happened. Many, many good things have happened too. But to be honest, I have been obsessing over the negative. Collectively, the good and bad has brought me here. And so, here I am: potentially over-sharing.

I once wrote a post about obstacles. When I wrote it, I was feeling particularly proud of some achievements I have made with my physical health. I was, in retrospect, also beginning to worry about my mental health. For a while– much, much too long now–  I have attempted to manage some obvious signs and symptoms of an ever-worsening bout with depression. This has happened to me once before, and I sought the care of professionals. I am coming to realize that in the past few months of denial, I was hoping against hope that I was “fixed” and would never need help again. I made some changes that really keep me feeling wonderful most of the time: I exercise regularly; I eat extremely well 95% of the time; I try to get enough sleep; I try to balance work and fun; I own 2 cats and a dog! And most of the time, when I’m in a stuck in a rut, all of these things DO help me to feel pretty good. It feels like life just has its ups and downs. The sadness passes, and the ups come back.

Lately, I’ve been doing all of these things. But I still don’t feel good.

Sometimes, I feel worse than bad.

I’ve been playing pretend.

It was fun for a while, but it was also fake.

So now, for some reason, it feels both terrifying and important to admit that sometimes, obstacles cannot be overcome alone. I am writing to admit that I’ve reached out for help.  I’m writing to say that as hard as that is, it is so very okay. And I am writing so that I can come back to revisit how I feel right now. My mind is a little scattered and overwhelmed, and it is hard to pin down just one feeling. Here’s a smattering of the many emotions I can currently identify:

Shame.

because I wish I could be happy without help.

Pride.

because I had the courage to ask for help.

Fear.

 of the unknown and unknowable future.

Hope.

because I am constantly moving towards where I am meant to be.

Gratitude.

for the support and encouragement of my love, my friends, and my family.

Worry.

that my issues will be too much for my support group to handle, and I’ll be left all alone.

Disappointment.

because I try so hard to take good care of myself and stay well.

Optimism.

because it’s okay to include others in my wellness and try something new when all else fails.

I see the dichotomy of my emotions, and I know that a very large part of my struggle is that I spend too much time in the negative chatter in my overactive mind. I’ve written here about my job, which I know has set me up for a pretty isolating existence, and is most certainly contributing to my struggle. Through professional intervention, I hope to explore my plans to change my job, to process my 30th birthday (gah! it’s so soon.), and to make plans to find the parts of me that I have misplaced. I know I’m in here someplace: a confident, calm, funny, and smart girl. I. will. dig. her. out.

 

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One thought on “playing pretend: it’s fun, but it’s fake.

  1. It is very, very okay to ask for help. Whether everyone will admit it or not, we have all been there…more than once. I already think you are quite couragous, and smart, and funny. One day at a time to happy right?

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