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Sunday, 1 January 2023

my mental health journey

I wrote this in my drafts two years ago, in January 2021. 


Dear Diary,

Last night was a very difficult night and I felt like putting an end to it over and over again. In my desperation, I called out to Him - the one person who claims to understand me completely - saying, "If you are real, please help me." Silence. Even at my wits end, silence. 

This morning as I sit in bed typing this, I think about all the people I love and who love me. I think about how sad they would be if I were gone. How kind they have been to me. How tolerating. And how they don't understand me. I realised, clearer than ever, than I'm alone in this world. We all are. No one person truly understands another.


Looking back at the past few years, I'm amused by how far I've come in my mental health journey. There were countless times that I genuinely believed that I would not make it past the age of 30; but here I am, celebrating yet another year with my family and friends, and another year closer to 30. 

If there's anything I have learned in 2022, it is that you don't have to suffer alone

In the past few years, my mind was in a very dark place. There were days I would lie in bed till 3p.m. in the afternoon before finding that tiny bit of motivation to get up and face the day. There were days when the brain fog got so bad that simple administrative tasks seemed impossible to complete. 

For those who have not experienced it before, anxiety (from my perspective) feels like...

8a.m. coffee routine because you need the sense of familiarity. Settling all the admin work at once while you're okay, before the brain fog sets in. "ASMR for relaxation" Spotify playlist. Forgetting your passwords. Being perpetually thirsty. 143 unread messages. Switching playlists to find one that calms your nerves. Cancelling plans. 7p.m. beer. The overwhelming urge to crush your brain. Heavy breathing. Hands shaking. 10p.m. whisky. Telling yourself that this too shall pass. Repeat.

This was my constant battle, and I felt so alone. I didn't talk to anyone about my struggles probably because I didn't want to be a burden, I was worried about people's perception of me, and I thought it was futile. When your mind is deep in the gutter, it is impossible to see past your struggles and believe that you could ever get better. I believed that this was my fate, and the only thing I could do was to learn to live with it.

I'm not sure what hit me but in the latter half of 2022, I finally decided that I was done with barely living my life. I sought help and opened up about my struggles. My only regret today is that I didn't do it earlier. 

It has been a long time since I looked up to the sky and thought to myself, "ah, what a beautiful day". I did that today. My mind feels a lot lighter, and clearer. And I think I could almost say that I'm happy. There are still bad days, but I know that they will pass.

I decided to open up about my mental health journey today because I wanted to let those who are suffering alone know that it is okay to ask for help. There is professional help out there and if you don't know where to start, you can drop me an e-mail/DM. Things could get better. 

a passage from Yung Pueblo's Clarity & Connection that really helped me

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