an ‘okay’ day with depression

The nights linger on but sleep still evades, people ask if I know how to silence my mind. It’s not the noise or thoughts keeping me here in the dark unable to rest… it’s a white noise that no one else can hear that pulses not just in my ears the through my veins and swirls around in my head as though trying to wash out something that is not there. The exhaustion builds and my body can only handle so much.
some days or nights are a cold black coma where even after twelve hours of apparent rest, trying to wake me is near impossible. laying there with a body like cement and a fog over my mind that will. not. lift. The hours have passed, yet no energy has been granted. A thirst nothing quite quenches.
I roll out of bed and sit on the floor, I am not sure what is really going on. There is nothing, no emotion, no desire… I am just here. I bow my head to speak to Father in Heaven, I know here is there. I just cannot feel it, this disease separates us. The words are hard I’m not sure what to say.  I get off my knees and try to start my day.  I walk aimlessly around the house, but with no purpose.
I sit to try and organise my thoughts, things to be done today seem like a lot, but at the same time, there isn’t much. By this time it’s almost 12’o clock … I haven’t eaten yet. I should probably start with this.  I look for food but I am not very hungry.
I must eat. Eating is important. The Idea of food makes me feel rather ill. a hand full of sultanas is at least a start.
I sit in the bright sun filled dining room, aimlessly scrolling through my phone. not particularly reading anything, mindlessly gazing outside to the blue skies. It’s probably warm out. I should feel like going outside. but I don’t, so maybe later I’ll go out. maybe fresh air will help me focus, maybe I’ll enjoy it.
Eating these sultanas is taking way too long so I will finish them as I study.
okay just this page, just start with reading this.

” despite
the
above
counter –
arguments
to
challenge
the
Alfred- myth ” *

Crap… what was the first word again… okay read the sentence again…

“despite
the”

crap what happened in the last paragraph. The brain can you please retain something.

” to
challenge
the”

I can’t remember what I just read. my head is pounding and words are swirling

“despite”
“Vikings”
“great”
“failing”

I want to do this. But it’s not working. I am trying, brain, please.
Please just work!!!
The tears are wetting the book making it impossible to see what I am attempting to read. Head swirling and hotly frustrated with my own lack of ability.
I flop on the floor trying to clear my mind.
It’s now 3′ o clock, I’m not sure how long I’ve sat here.  I’m still not hungry, I don’t feel like cooking but I should. I don’t exactly feel like sitting here either. I don’t feel like anything. the white noise still courses through my veins, numbing fog. unable to connect to the reality surrounding me even when I try.
you can do this. Just get up. simple.
one foot at a time.
okay good.

I’m not quite sure what I am eating, but I’m sitting and I have some food in front of me. Just eat it. You need to.
I shovel the food down so I don’t have time to pick at it. I feel like I over ate. But It must be a normal portion.
phone buzzes

” you coming tonight? ”

Oh right, we have a family home evening tonight. I don’t feel up to going. I should want to, but I don’t. Being around people just doesn’t draw me in. However, I don’t want to sit here all night either.
Do you really have the energy? you are a mess. you have under and hour to look decent. make your choice.
You don’t want to be here, but you don’t want to be there…. what do I even want? why don’t I want anything. I should want something right?

” sorry I think I won’t be able to be there in time” 

See no problems. but why do I feel guilty? maybe it could be fun. you aren’t doing anything better. common stop being useless.

okay fine… I’ll try.
I shower, makeup…. okay I  am barely going to make it.

my heart beat is growing louder, it is throbbing in my ears… each step along the road feels like I’m going to fall.
maybe this was a bad idea. you can’t even get there. you are stressing over nothing. you’re fine.

But I’m late, well I feel late. that’s rude. If I’m late I shouldn’t go at all. you haven’t seen them in ages so what if it awkward. okay, you’re over thinking.
great you are crying. Calm the heck down. too late to back up now.
thoughts swirling, but nothing is coherent, head dizzy and heart echoing in my bones.
you are on the train. play with snap chat something. distract yourself.

cool so just a short walk. I got this.
sing hymns.. and walk.

no … no, I don’t got this. It’s not too late to go home

phone buzzing. crap.

hey do you think you will make it at all?”

you still have time to say no and go home. it’s gonna be fine

“hey yea I’m almost there”

crap.. okay breath and walk.
people are probably late anyway. so you are fine

oh yea.. I am the second person here.

small talk. please let me disappear.

more people. I feel sick.

this looks like fun, but why do I feel like I am participating through someone else’s body. This isn’t me, why am I not laughing? they are. this should be fun right? My chest is tight.
you cannot cry here. not now.
okay, talk to someone.

okay .. I can’t sit here any longer. I’m exhausted. I’m going to break if I can’t leave.

fake call?
text someone?
just leave?
bathroom and not come back?
lie?

okay…. just say you need to go.

Okay done. just to get home.

….
….

where did the past hour go? what was I doing?
well, I guess it’s time for bed.

I flop on my bed exhausted. I can’t focus on anything.
But the white noise. the numbness courses through my body…
How can one be so beyond exhausted and not fall asleep?
how useless I didn’t even cover half of what I was meant to do today.
crap. how am I going to do this?

Self-annoyance and guilt are sickening to my stomach, the pain makes me curl into a ball and try hold the pieces together as I feel them fall apart. Can someone please show me how.  why can I not keep up?   I want this to stop… please Just stop

I should be better than this.
I need sleep, I need rest.

I need energy if I expect to do this again tomorrow.

I roll onto my knees. ” Heavenly Father. I miss you”


Thank you for reading this.
I know mental illness can and will be different for each person who experiences it.
Mental illnesses are complex There are bad days, meh days. okay days… and there are good days. we cannot Judge everyone according to one experience we have or one person we know.
If you feel like you are struggling with any of these things, or you don’t feel okay. I encourage you to turn to someone you trust, to medical professionals, and your church leaders. Life can be easier and better!
It is something worth fighting for.

Love ,
391570539593422220117

Mental illness an invisible war

Dia dhuit!

I hope we are all well and pressing forward. Because sometimes this isn’t easy.
I’ve thought about this post, and discussing this openly for a while. But unsure on if it will sit well with people. I want to discuss the daily effects of living with mental illness.
we will often hear about the crippling stages of depression or the all consuming effects of severe anxiety. But often I haven’t seen much aimed at those who have maybe fought their way out of those depths. Those who think they have mastered the illness and learnt how to be well healthy. But in reality they still suffer from the effects of it in their daily life.

I would in reflection of my own personal experiences  joyfully say I have come leaps and bounds in happiness and recovery compared to where i was 3 years ago. But am I truly 100% ?  well to be honest I may have never been. not until the Resurrection. Clinical mental illness can be things we may struggle with for a life time. Just as any other disease. Some may be born with diabetes, some develop it later in life, others may eventually beat the diabetes to be fine, others may not. So it is with Mental illness. No matter when, where, or why we struggle. It is real, it is hard and we cannot do it alone.
So although I was diagnosed with such illnesses at the age of 15, I had very clearly been seriously ill for at least 2-3 years already and with in hindsight years before. First clear signs probably before the age of 10, specially as i go back and review the things i used to write in journals or just the way i felt. Now in my early 20s I see what has changed and what hasn’t. Having spent time with counselors and psychologists, having been on medication. I’ve made massive progress, I am a completely different person compared to whom I once was. However this illness it still remains.

I want to focus specifically on two things I have personally struggled with, ones that are more common than we often want to Admit. Both depression and Anxiety.
I remember the moments when I was almost crippled and held down by the dense mist, unable to make connections mentally at the speed I had used to, the empty weight in my chest that slowly felt as though it was consuming me. To randomly be replaced with such intense panic as though my pulse swirled in my own head. where my Body would literally forget how to function for periods of time. Through much assistance, of medical professionals and the Lord I have overcome the severeness of the illness. For those who are still in this place it is possible. It may seem like it is not. But as it reads in Ether 12:27 :

 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.”

We cannot do this alone, this is where humility comes in. We need to accept the help we need, medical and spiritual. We can however follow the counsel in Alma 37: 35-37:

“Yea, and cry unto God for all thy support; yea, let all thy doings be unto the Lord, and whithersoever thou goest let it be in the Lord; yea, let all thy thoughts be directed unto the Lord; yea, let the affections of thy heart be placed upon the Lord forever.
     Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day.” 

Give it to the Lord, pray unto Him for everything. Put your trust in Him, there is strength here. As we do so, we can make it through.
However we may wonder why sometimes when we do all that we can, we try our hardest and keep the commandments. That we may not feel the Joy or Happiness we have often been promised. We may question why, or what we did wrong to cause us to become that exception to the rule. we may ask ourselves if this promise was for everyone else but us. That maybe we have failed God and He doesn’t love us like he Loves others. This however is false Doctrine. He loves you and He want’s you to be happy. With mental illness, our brains do not let the correct messages to be passed, making it hard for us to feel these things. Or maybe they do pass through but not as completely as a healthy person. This is not your fault!
This is something we need to Pray and find ways to push through, learn to express these emotions with those around us so they can support us. It worries them. You are not being a burden on them. No they may not understand perfectly. But Jesus Christ does.

As is reads in Isaiah 53: 3-4 :

“He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
    Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.”

He has gone through every heartache and pain we have, He knows how to understand, He does. He went though all of this so that we Hopefully will turn to Him and draw strength from Him. As we apply his Gospel, all of those beautiful teachings into our lives.

There is a beautiful Promise in the 38th chapter of Alma in the Book of Mormon, found in verse 5:

 And now my son, Shiblon, I would that ye should remember, that as much as ye shall put your trust in God even so much ye shall be delivered out of your trials, and your troubles, and your afflictions, and ye shall be lifted up at the last day.”

This promise is for us also. He never said “as soon as you do this, things will be easy”
The key thing is it will happen, in this we have an essential principle; HOPE. we can try look forward, no it isn’t easy. But this promise is sure;
In the Last day we will be free! and we shall be lifted up among the righteous to meet our beloved Saviour and Redeemer!

But even if we aren’t in the deepest depths of despair we still live a life different to that of others.  Sometimes I feel as though because I was no longer where I once was that I have no reason to feel as though things are hard. I would be hard on myself and try push myself.
However through attendance to the Temple I have discovered a crucial thing about myself.

although I thought I was free,  that the illness had left. The moment I step through those beautiful doors I experience something. This may not be the same for others this is a wonderful tender mercy I receive and I live for.
I walk through those doors, and those things that I have been bound by on earth cannot have any hold. I feel the mist lift and my spirit lighten and I experience for the time i am within those walls a glimpse of is to come. The freedom that I long for, and thanks to the goodness of God will receive.
However I realize upon leaving those sacred walls That I am not yet free. That I still rely daily upon Grace (the Enabling power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ) to strengthen me through this. I don’t have the same energy levels as others because I am daily fighting against this to Just live a normal life. It’s like walking through water compared to walking on a track course.
Each day is a new day and every hour can sometimes be a small step to focus on in itself.
People often forget that Just because we may not show that it is hard because we manage to live normal or to hold a Job, or even get out of bed, that maybe, Just maybe it took us a world of effort. Some days it may seem absolutely impossible to even fathom moving out of Bed.
But there is Hope, it is possible, even if at the current time it may seem like it isn’t. You can do this.  One of my favourite scriptures is Doctrine and covenants section 24:8 it contains one of my all time favourite promises from the Lord:

“Be patient in afflictions, for thou shalt have many; but endure them, for, lo, I am with thee, even unto the end of thy days.”

we are not in this alone,  take each day, each hour, and each minute as it comes.
One day dawn will break and we will be free, until this time we must hold onto hope and do all we can and seek the Help of those around us!

I can promise you the Lord will strengthen you!

I love you! But more Importantly the Lord loves you!

Sister Priston-Turner xx