I’m fairly open about my bipolar – the depression and hypo-mania, and I’m beginning to theorize that this level of comfort correlates to a level of mastery I believe I’ve gained over it in the past few years. I’m theorizing this because I’m experiencing something new and I find it embarrassing when I know I absolutely should not.
I’ve recently been introduced to a whole new mental health issue that I have not yet experienced. I’m currently battling anxiety. Anxiety is a beast. It has been endlessly lashing out at me for the past few months, chasing me into corner after corner until I break. I meditate, I bike, I see my friends and have quality conversations with them, I try to think positively, I understand this is a physiological response and yet I can’t control it. And I know I shouldn’t expect myself to – but somehow I do. I manage my bipolar, why can’t I manage this anxiety?
I feel ashamed.
My anxiety comes out by way of compulsively and uncontrollably itchy skin on the upper outer part of my arms and the upper part of my legs. It’s usually triggered while getting ready for work and it’s gotten to the point that I’ve made myself bleed if I leave my legs uncovered, or give myself tiny bruises if I put on tights. I can’t not scratch. It’s the most driving itch I’ve ever felt in my life.
I sought the help of my psychiatrist because getting in as a new patient at a therapist is months out. I got anti-anxiety medication. I’m trying to control my thoughts better but it’s not easy.
I feel embarrassed.
I don’t want others to feel this way though. I know I’m not alone but it truly can feel so incredibly lonely when you go through things like this on your own.
I suppose I’m writing to remind myself and others that it’s human to experience these trials. We’re not alone. We don’t have to be perfect. I don’t have to be perfect. I am not perfect. And it’s ok.