Dissociative disorders. They are dangerous and terrifying and confusing. They are not ‘oh I’m just dissociating’ or a funny joke like ‘haha I just dissociated for like 5 minutes’. I am diagnosed with DPDR (derealization-depersonalization) and it is pure and utter grief. It’s acting like another person entirely because you’ve lost your presence so much that all you can do is make physcial contact with people and say unusual things. It’s waking up in the night and sitting for hours not sure if you are real or who you are anymore. It’s hurting yourself because you’re not sure if you’re real anymore. It’s not knowing if your voice is yours or someone else’s. It’s like my body is completely disconnected from my mind and sometimes I have no idea whether the cracking of my knuckles is the sound of someone clicking a pen. It’s so much more than just feeling spaced out. It’s being stuck in your mind for hours not knowing how to get back to reality. I find it so scary that I could live my whole life with this response to distress just because of traumas and traumas that have built up in my life. It’s not a joke, it’s not something to be taken lightly. It’s a serious mental illness and it’s hell. I’m fighting it with all I can but it’s fucking hard. I am determined that one day I will be free of this. 💙
I love showers in the morning
I love being too cold and then too hot again
Watching the silver dirt run down the plughole
Running off my cheeks, lips and neck
Washing it all away
Washing the dirt out of my hair
Washing all the dirty dirty flowers out of my hair
Tangled ivy stripped off my scalp by the chemicals and water
I’m uprooting and I’m regrowing and I’m drowning
All of my dirty dirty flowers.
~Living in a household of abuse and shouting almost constantly is no way to live~
A shout (a low voice)
A shout (a higher one)
Is all it takes for me
To become the size of a penny
And for the roof to come crashing down
A little penny
Rolling between his fingertips
Rolling down the stairs
Chased by a cat with moons in her eyes
Cold and metallic
Like blood in my mouth
Rolling with my thighs and feet up in the air
Inside a piggy bank
With no plug to pull
And I will roll away
Some days recovery is a field. And a yellow weed is growing in a beautiful ploom in the centre.
It takes your energy and all of your strength to pull the weed (as beautiful and wild as it seems) out of the ground. But when you turn around there are hundreds of new weeds, some of them yellow, some of them green and blue and purple and crimson, sprouting up from the earth.
Then you realise you need a helping hand to get rid of the weeds. You enlist family, friends, therapists and doctors to help you clear your field. It feels good to have a helping hand.
From time to time weeds pop up here and there but now you have a team to help you pluck them away and help the earth beneath you heal. As seasons change and sun shines the condition of the field changes and varies but it always remains your field.
And soon you see flowers blooming on the grass in vibrant colours and shades. A fiesta of energy and life.
Other days recovery is a battlefield.
~We often find that, although we hate our mental illnesses with a passion, there are moments when we can feel in love and deeply attached to our illness. I have experienced this with my eating disorder and self harm, and to some extent depression too. This can make recovery from these issues particularly challenging~
“I feel like I belong in my illness.” It is where I’m meant to be. The real world is too hard to cope with and I am left with my poor mental health and unhealthy coping mechanisms that I can just sink into and soothe myself, escaping from the world around me. Sometimes relapse can feel like coming home.
“My illness is the only interesting thing about me”. Often we feel as if we were chosen to be sick. It sounds bizarre but sometimes we can feel special for having an illness. And once we are deep into it, it is so all-consuming that we don’t have anything else going on in our lives to love. And we may have distanced our loved ones so much that we are isolated and alone with our illness. It feels as if it is the only thing we can rely on.
“No one will care when I’m better” Being sick often means lots of appointments and much intrusive therapy and social care. The attention, although sometimes unwanted, reinforces the idea that being sick means we are more loved. This is not true, but when our perception is poor, it can feel like it.
“My illness is my friend”. Mainly applies to eating disorders but I feel this when everything thing in my life seems to be going wrong and my ED is the only thing I have. It is a constant. It feels loyal when everyone around me is not. But it’s fake. It’s a lie designed by the illness to make me fall in deeper and trust it. And it’s not true at all because, even though you may be unable to see it, it is not your friend and you have plenty of people who love you and care about you in the world. Your illness is not one of them.
I wear my hurt on my body like wallpaper
Florals, textures and stripes
Inked and stuck down on skin.
Patterns I wonder if they are out of date
Trimmed and unfitting the wallpaper covers me
(It’s hard to breathe under a mask)
Eyes judging my beautiful tiger stripes
Cover your childrens eyes
Hope that one day they become humans instead of plasterboard.
~written in one of dissociation-like episodes, I don’t know what my own poem is about but hey~
I die from the inside out
From my stomach, appendix, cheeks
His words trickle down my thighs
Like holy red wine
Ivy growing from my womb to my throat
You stop smiling as I tell you
The danger comes from the inside