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Confessionals.

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Sometimes, it’s hard to give up the past. It’s hard to look into the future and think of the positive. You get caught up reliving memories. You get stuck on the what ifs. I’ve been doing that a bit lately. What if? What if?  Life throws curve balls at you when you least expect it.

I try to keep positive, but it’s not always easy. I could say life isn’t easy, but then I feel bad, because compaired to so many others, my life is a piece of cake, but for me, I struggle. Struggle with the mundane. Even if I have become somewhat cynical, somewhat bitter, I still have that little box of hope buried underneath everything.

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I’d closed myself up a couple of years ago. I buried my feelings so very very deep because I couldn’t handle them. It’s the way I cope. It’s not the first time i’d done it. Filtering out things one emotion, one feeling, one lost hope, desire, dream at a time. It’s kind of like an emotional hibernation. It’s something I’m constantly working on with my psych, because you see, it means i’m closed off to the happiness that life can bring

I’ve learn to live off the simple pleasures. Things that won’t hurt or can’t hurt me. The excitement of Frodo when I get home. The sun shining on me through the window when I have an afternoon nap. How amazing a cheeseburger tastes when you haven’t had one in a long time. Mail, mail, it never fails.

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I don’t think I realised how much events of the past have changed me, how deep the roots have set in. I’m not the same person I was last year, or even the year before that. I am stronger, I am braver, I am more me, but I’ve noticed more and more as of late how hard it is to remove stains from the past.

I’m trying though. I’ve been inspired. I’ve been surprised. I’ve been opening up, sharing. I’ve even let myself hope, and dream. Feel. Things I didn’t think I could, or would feel. Dare I say it? I’m happy.

Oh so deep and meaningful.

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Life is weird. Sometimes as much as you wish sometimes that things would just stand still and stay that way, it doesn’t. It may be as  subtle as the flutter of insect wings, or as dramatic as a disastrous tornado, but you can’t stop change.

I struggle with my head, lately, it seems like the hardest thing to do to just get out of bed. It’s not always like that, i’ve gone months where I feel fine, like a nearly ‘normal’ person. But I fell down a while ago, and I can’t seem to find my footing to stand back up straight again.

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My head gets filled with, what ifs, how comes. I cling to things. I don’t let go easy. I can show the face I want the world to see, but I’m so scared of feeling. Sometimes I’m surprised at just how open I am on here, how much I share, how vulnerable I let myself be.

Moving forward is hard. Moving on. I’m about to turn 27 in a few days and I am still so lost. I know I’m not alone in that. I know what I what, my general life goal. I know that I can’t have the current specifics of that dream, but I also know that the specifics will change, I can already feel myself letting that part of myself go.

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The future is scary. It’s unknown and that terrifies me, but then again, I don’t want to know. I need to keep looking forward, moving forward, pushing through. If I need to stay in bed and lose myself in a book to get me through some days, I will, because I want a future.

So, apologies for the lack of blog posts. I’ve just been trying to keep myself alive. I pushed myself out to my friends housewarming and had a great time. Met new people, got a little drunk, let myself live a little. It was good.

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I’m hoping June is going to be a bit of a month of transformation. I’m hoping by the end of the year I will be back to being a butterfly.

Photos by me. Word graphics from Pinterest.

Borderline Personality Disorder Awareness Month

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May is BPD Awareness month. It’s oddly fitting that I seem to be in a black hole of depression at the moment.

I’ve talked about my mental health a few times on the blog, I sometimes worry if I share too much, but when I get an email from a reader thanking me for being open about it, I know I’ve done the right thing. Mental illness has a certain stigma attached to it. It often makes people automatically think i’m crazy, bad, insane, and hey, to some I might be, but that’s not all I am. Everyone has layers.

I struggle a hell of a lot. I understand that a lot of people do, I know that there are people out there that have worse lives then I do, and I actually feel guilty about it. I hate that most of the time I find just living hard. It frustrates me that I have problems, that I get anxiety and I can’t live a full life. That I can’t go out and catch a bus, that I can’t have a full time job, that I can’t go to the movies by myself, meet new people, the stuff most people take for granted every day.

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I’ve been seeing councilors, therapists, psychs, since I was around 10. I was diagnosed with depression, then Bipolar, then that was changed to Borderline. I feel lucky in many ways that I’ve learnt from a young age many coping mechanisms. It’s what has let me come so far. At one stage my Mum told me she didn’t think I’d make it to 18 I was so badly depressed. I’ve always felt a bit different, more, I dunno, MORE. I used to wake my parents up every night until I was around 10, just to make sure they were ok. I’ve always felt scared.

I’ve pushed through many things. I used to self injure, almost every day. I don’t anymore. I sometimes slip up, but I sometimes go over a year without hurting myself. I’ve learnt to recognise my emotions and try to rationalise them. I’m often telling myself “It may FEEL like the end of the world Natalie, but it’s not”.

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While it was good knowing what was wrong with me, in regards to getting the right help, it’s hard having a ‘label’ thrust upon you. I don’t have all the symptoms they list and that is always something to remember, every person has their own special concoction of illness. I am not an angry person, at all, I will go out of my way to make others happy, to the point of making myself miserable. One of the big criteria is ‘reckless behavior’, and on a list with things like, substance abuse, reckless driving, promiscuous sex, my main ‘reckless’ areas lay in spending and binge eating.

The statistic that scares me the most is the suicide rate. 10% of people with BPD will commit suicide, it’s the mental illness with the highest suicide rate. 70% of people with BPD will at least try. So if you put 10 people in a room, 7 of them will have tried, and one will be successful. I am one of those 7, but I will NOT be that 1.

If you ever feel suicidal, or suffer from depression, don’t be afraid to get help. It’s hard to reach out, but please do. There are many specialised groups, lifelines etc in most countries & are easy to look up online. Don’t be afraid to try medication either, for some people one pill can help a simple chemical imbalance in the brain. Also, don’t forget that you are never alone.