Look at me, tapping away on my phone like some kind of mental illness overcomer.
Does that trope bug the shit out of anyone else? The whole “look at this brave person overcoming their mental illness and living happily-ever-after” bullshit? Or the fucked up memes that say shit like “this woman battles depression, anxiety, and mental illness every day and still goes to work with a smile on her face – what’s your excuse?”
Personally, I hate that shit. I haven’t overcome my diagnoses, I’ve learned (and am still learning) to live with them. They are part of me, they have made me the creative, neurotic person I am – and I’d rather not end up as someone’s inspiration porn (Google it).
On to my real reason for writing tonight…
I had therapy today. And my therapist was really digging into some of the shit I’ve been dealing with lately. And suddenly, BOOM.
Rather than think about or face the stuff we were talking about, my disordered brain seized on an inappropriate thought-from-nowhere, then dove into an anxiety-laden self-shame spiral so uncomfortable that I couldn’t even talk about it to my therapist. All I could get out was that the current topic was causing me anxiety.
So of course, my obsessively compulsive mind (or is that compulsively obsessive?) has turned this moment over and under and examined it from every angle: is that inappropriate thought truth? Or was it really the same type of displacement I’ve experienced in the past but never had a way to explain? Am I more broken than I thought? Or am I making progress? Is it okay that I don’t talk to my therapist about this? And just why was that inappropriate thought tucked away in there anyway? Where the fuck did it come from?
Yes, it’s exhausting to be in my head. Especially since it tends to be full of more questions and worries – and some fairly obscure trivia – than actual answers or useful information.
Unsurprisingly, it doesn’t have an answer to this. Part of me feels like recognizing the displacement as it was happening is a good thing, even though it triggered some anxiety and disordered thinking.
But the asshole in my brain is trying to tell me that something is really big-time wrong with me. Which, of course, is always possible. But I’m starting to suspect that the brain asshole doesn’t really have my best interests at heart. Which is extra shitty because the brain asshole is just me, being an asshole to myself.
I hope I’m making progress. I think I’m making progress. That’s good enough, right?