So bone tired today. I never thought it was possible to feel this tired again, I remember now why I started taking meds for bed. I was many weeks pregnant and no matter how exhausted I would spend the nights awake in misery willing my kind to turn off so the baby and myself could rest. Except right now I am taking my Trazadone every night and not being able to sleep. Is it because the Trazadone on its own without the other meds (which I have stopped taking) is now to weak to overcome the blasted sop that is my mind? My ears are full of sludge, every muscle, limb, nerve, bone is a dead weight. Cotton candy head with a chainsaw rolling inside.
The perfect time to be tree trimming alone, exhausted and depressed. Nothing merrier than sitting at home putting your tree up solo to make you feel like the loneliest saddest dump in the universe who doesn’t have anyone. Poetic, I could write a poem about the rain falling outside, alongside the tears that keep coming with every ornament I put up with all their attending memories of much happier times.
If I could wave my magic wand, as my ex psychologist used to say, I’d want to be gone in a puff of smoke for the next month till all of this was done. The other option is the hospital, get drugged, fed and put into oblivion while the world carols and toasts their Christmas cheer in lovely camaraderie. I am sure emergency is full of us sick fucks. They would probably reject me too due to no space and wouldn’t that really seal the angel on the tree of rejection.
Next year I should go on a Christmas retreat, just say good buy and find a meditation, no speaking retreat, shut the world out. The last 3 seasons have been miserable. Is there a such a thing as a happy mentally ill person at the holidays, when all emotions run high and being alone is the cruelest joke that can be played.
This is what mental health suggests for the holiday. I think I have a D or close to an F for taking care of myself this season. If the below was a quiz I most definitely failed.
Stress can throw anyone off-kilter. But when you have a mental illness, you might be extra vulnerable. “The demands, pressures and expectations of the holidays can be felt more intensely by people with mental illness,” according to Darlene Mininni, PhD, MPH, author of The Emotional Toolkit, who works privately with individuals and speaks nationally on topics related to emotional health and well-being.
“Having a mental illness is the same as having any chronic illness,” said Elvira G. Aletta, Ph.D, a clinical psychologist and founder of Explore What’s Next, a comprehensive psychotherapy practice. So it helps to have a plan and take good care of yourself.
Here are nine tips for coping with the holidays.
1. Make yourself a priority.- IF THAT MEANS WORKING EVERYDAY AS A PRIORITY, A+
During the holidays, as we’re hosting, shopping, cooking, cleaning, attending get-togethers and checking off other tasks on our to-do lists, self-care often takes a backseat. But “your health comes first,” said Dr. Aletta, who’s also a Psych Central contributor.
This also means maintaining your routine as much as possible. “Make sure you get the sleep you need and keep up any activities that make you feel good such as exercise or time with friends,” Dr. Mininni said.
2. Avoid feeling guilty.- NOT GUILY, NO ONE WANTS TO BE AROUND FOR ME TO PLEASE, EXCEPT WORK
During the holiday season, many of us want to be many things to our loved ones. And we don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. So we put pressure on ourselves along with a hefty side of stress-inducing guilt.
Remind yourself that pleasing everyone is unrealistic. “Set aside the guilt, push the pause button on it or throw it out completely if you can. Put it on a shelf, in a box, labeled ‘I will talk about this later with my therapist,’” Dr. Aletta said.
3. Keep connected.- BAHAHAHAHAHAAHAA
If you aren’t feeling well, you might be tempted to isolate yourself. But this will just make you feel worse, Dr. Mininni said. “If you’re not in the holiday mood, consider spending time with a friend or calling a person who cares about you. Connecting with just one person can make you 10 times less likely to get depressed,” she said.
4. Tune into your feelings—and be honest.- I GET AN A FOR THIS ONE, I AM HONEST, ALONE AND HONEST
You may love your family very much. But if you’re honest with yourself, you might realize that being with them also can be stressful. Coming to this realization, while uncomfortable, will help you figure out better ways to cope, Dr. Aletta said.
5. Identify what you really want to do.- DIE CRY SLEEP FOREVER
For instance, you might want to spend the entire day with your family or just go for dessert, Dr. Aletta said. “Once being with [your family] is a choice instead of a gun-to-your-head obligation maybe you can relax a bit.”
6. Plan a timeout when stress strikes.- BEEN DOING A LOT OF THE CRYING, CHECK THAT ONE OFF
Dr. Aletta encouraged readers to give themselves permission to leave a stressful situation. Your “strategic retreat” may be anything from walking the dog to getting tea at a café to listening to soothing music to having a good cry, she said. Then decide whether the healthier choice is to return to the get-together or go home.
7. Buddy up.- WTH WHO?
“Have a confidant close by or on speed dial: a friend, cousin, sister or niece who ‘gets it,’” Dr. Aletta said. In fact, “She may need your help to get through as much as you need hers,” she added.
8. Avoid alcohol.- MUAHAHAHAHAHAA- THATS MY BUDDY UP
Alcohol can interfere with medication and exacerbate symptoms. It also might spark an altercation or two. “You do not want to be disinhibited when there is even one person in the room who can hit your buttons with an emotional Taser,” Dr. Aletta said. On a similar note, she suggested that readers avoid confronting people in general.
9. Laugh—a lot.- SEE ABOVE. I JUST DID LAUGH.
“See the humor wherever and whenever you can,” Dr. Aletta said. That’s because humor heals. (If you’d like some proof, Therese Borchard’s piece on humor is a must-read.)