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  • Writer's picturemia jett

Mental Madness

Updated: Aug 4, 2023

Although I struggle with mental illness, I had never really taken the time to really learn about the things that affect me, but when I had a family member that was diagnosed I wanted to learn all I could so that I could better understand them and learn healthy ways to communicate with them and signs to watch out for that may mean they are having a hard time mentally. In doing that it also brought awareness about myself and things to watch out for personally so that maybe I could redirect my thoughts. I have learned how to be self aware and I try to use the tools I have been taught to get myself in a better place mentally. I had lived apart from my mom and oldest son for so long the thought of moving back near to them almost made me want to puke, simply because I was afraid they wouldn't understand who I really am, or the things I fight inside everyday. It's really hard when you look just fine on the outside but inside is such a turmoil. Many people, not just my family don't understand the many faces of mental illness.

I went to a church once that the pastor told me "if I was truly a follower of Christ that I wouldn't have mental illness", that really hit me hard, because I truly believe in God and I couldn't understand what I was doing so wrong that He wasn't fixing my mental illness. I then became very lost and afraid of what was going to happen to me. At some point though what clicked to me and changed my negative feelings I was having was I remembered something I heard as a kid a lot. That saying is "it takes all kinds to make the world go round." I remember especially hearing that from my mom and my aunt, I don't really remember what would happen or why they would say it, but it stuck in my mind. It is that saying that made me really think before I was quick to judge anyone. Yes, I know that it's not our job to judge, but it's probably something we have done at least at one point in our lives. I now don't judge anyone, have not for a very long time, but there are people I have met that I don't agree with certain things that they may do and for that reason I may choose to not have them in my circle of people, but I don't judge who they are. I just choose to not participate.

I also no longer believe that me taking medication for mental illness has nothing to do with lack of my faith in God. I believe that there is a reason I was born this way, and that may be a reason I never know, but I am ok with that. God wrote each of our stories different, and while some of us may have very similar stories, none are the same. Love is what we are supposed to spread in this world, and I feel that the mental health issues I have make me much more compassionate and caring for those that may be hard to love in this world. I always try to look at things through a different perspective than my own. I try my hardest to let my love toward others to be the same love that Jesus has for us. Unconditional. Mental health and addiction are two things that I struggle with and that I can speak on from personal experience, but often those two things try to make us believe we are undeserving of love.

When I was in active addiction and my mom had taken my kids and made the decision that tough love with me was the way for her to go, in my mind I had myself convinced that my mom didn't love me, that she was completely ashamed of who her daughter was. Really it was I had given her no other choice but to give me tough love, and while she wasn't ashamed of me, she was very sad and disappointed in the bad choices I was making. For a significant time period though I believed within myself that I was not loveable, after all if your own mother couldn't love you then who else could? I am glad I got over that thought process because it was very damaging. Thinking those thoughts kept me in a very dark place for awhile. I realized the true meaning of "hate the addiction not the addict". I believe addiction is a disease the same as mental illness is a disease. I don't know one person who has said they laid in bed awake at night dreaming of having mental illness or an addiction to something when they were kids. My dream was of becoming a nurse.

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