Depression. Epilepsy. Broken Wrist. What’s Next? Mostly Good I Hope

Photo by Markus Kontiainen

Photo by Markus Kontiainen

That’s how it has been. Depression. Epilepsy. And now broken wrist. And the last week and a half I’ve had time to think about this all. Thinking if this is some sick joke that I’ve had to deal with all of these in just few months.

Yes, I’ve had depression on and off since I was fairly young, runs in the family. But the last few years I’ve gotten the hang of that one, and know and feel when I’m “falling” and know what to do about that. And I’ve had epilepsy since I was 17, though the last 3 years without the medication and for almost 22 years without any seizures, until just before last Christmas and a week and a half ago. Oh yeah… And that broken wrist. I’ve written how I’ve managed to fall on my face couple of times last fall, but I got the news of my wrist being broken since last October and needing an operation involving a screw and bone from my hip, just on the Christmas week.

So with all of these, plus having some major heart brake issues, my interest in this all started to be under a rock. Since I met with my surgeon about my wrist early January, I’ve been more than down with my mood. The news about when and how the operation will be hit me really hard. I was smart enough to not google anything, but with nothing to wait, I was blindsided by it all. Now I’m on the waitlist for the operation which might be in two weeks or in 6 months. And the fact that after it I’ll be in recovery for 3 months. I just didn’t expect any of that. I guess I thought that it’ll be a day and then I’ll do some training with a physio and be done. To be honest, I have no idea what I expected.

The fact that I’m not capable of being myself 100%, is very and has been very disheartening. Yes, I’ve probably been a bit over dramatic about it, but hell, the fact that going from very athletic and capable to needing to ask for help with the simplest things and not being able to use your left arm is a bit shitty feeling. But all through all those feelings I’ve reminded myself that I have it good, it’s going to get treated and there are so many millions of people in the world who aren’t in the position I am and still won’t complain, so.

But what I’ve also been, has been depressed, tired to the level of light burnout, lost in the puzzle of people and how they treat you, and with all that in me already, my good old friend epilepsy paid me another visit. On a day when I last needed it, not sure if you ever need that but yeah. And at that point I just was too tired to be interested in anything. That was it for me. I had nothing in me to fight anything anymore. I was mad, sad and just thinking What’s Next? Bring It! I don’t even care anymore! Which is obviously total bullshit, because I’m incapable of not caring, but even I was close.

And when I was laying in the ER of the hospital and my doctor comes and says that we need to start your medication for the epilepsy again, I don’t know, I just broke a bit inside.

One of the biggest things for me has been that I’ve been able to balance my life in a way the last few years that I didn’t need the medication anymore. And now, knowingly what I shouldn’t do and what will trigger it, I’m back in a place in my life where I have to put few meaningful dreams aside because of it. There went my dreams of finally being able to drive a license and being able to do those road trips I’ve dreamt for a long time, going somewhere alone in a car I can sleep in. There also went the dream of living as clean as possible, as the idea of needing to eat that strong of a medication makes me sad and like I have no control over my own life.

In a way I was and have been mostly mad or disappointed at myself. Why with all the knowledge I have about my situation and my past, I go and do the exact opposite? Why I stop all that have made me feel that good and balanced my depression to a level that it’s almost non existing? Why I stop caring about my diet and think that something would have changed with me needing certain amount of sleep to keep my epilepsy in check? In the end I’ve been sabotaging my own self.

Why?

The way my last year went from start to finish has definitely had a part in that. It started and ended with a heart break. And now learning more and more about my HSP (highly sensitive person) and introversion, I’m not even surprised how puzzled it all made me. I lost myself in all of that, without realising that I need time to heal, really heal. I healed but not fully in spring time with running, I was heading to a great direction but I fell for someone too early and that was too good to not dive head first. Why not, I tend to believe in love no matter what.

But when I moved back to Finland, I was just in need of a change and I got that in the form of a completely new and exciting job. But as I do, I dove head first, and forgot that now I really need those good balancing teachings that I’ve practised so hard for couple of years. But when you’re excited you don’t have time to concentrate on things like good diet, sleep and exercise, right?!

So my first epilepsy seizure, late fall, tried to remind me of certain things without me listening to any of it. Then the news of my wrist tried to calm me down a bit, but it only made me angry and teenagey. So I needed the universe to really stop me cold with my second and hopefully last epilepsy seizure, to hopefully make me understand that it doesn’t make me a bad person if I’m not willing to risk my health for something else. No one made me or expected me to do that, just to make it clear, that was all me. But the challenge will be from now on, from next Monday when I go back to work. To find that balance, really work on me and finding ways to feel better.

Maybe this is part of some 30’s crisis, that I didn’t have when I was turning 30, or maybe this is some pressure that comes from the world we live in these days. No idea what, but I feel a lot of times we’re supposed and expected to be almost immortal and capable of everything without sleep and personal boundaries. The social media pushes new this and that to us all the time, and you feel even when you don’t really feel like that in you, that you need to want something or be something else that you are, or more this or that. I can’t do all of that. I’m one of those who are way too sensitive to be in front of all that all the time and try to exceed. I have no interest in exceeding because that’s impossible. That’s not me.

I saw an interview of Adele when her new album came out and the interviewer was asking does she miss being in the spotlight or does she have her own squad. What she answered was perfect. She said that not really because it’s not real life, and those who think that it is usually tend to be assholes. And that she has a squad, the ones that truly matter and care, and that it’s really small, and has gotten smaller and smaller the more known she is.

Without realising, that’s exactly what I’ve wanted to do for some time. To go in the background so to speak and just do my job really well. Push myself forward in those things, like writing and being healthy and a good friend and person, but doing it for me, not for others. And what I’ve noticed is that my “squad” is really small but the quality of it is off the roof! There’s spots in there for few more good ones, but my trust is a bit shakey these days so I apologise if it’s not that easy to get in. So again, less is more, in so many ways.

Also, how I feel about all these physical things that have been shaking my balance, is still something I thought long long time ago, I got them because something higher knew that I’m strong enough to carry them. I’m embracing this all now, it’s not all fun and games all the time, but I am embracing this and what it brings. I can assure you that starting your medication again and it making you feel like you are in a cloud of deep tiredness and foggy head and nausea, is not the way you want to spend a week, but I keep moving forward. I just needed to let myself feel all of that. I can’t be afraid of things that I love. I can’t stop being me, even if something like this is “back”. I am me, because I have all of these. There’s nothing wrong with me, and if they make someone think again about if they want to get to know me better, then that’s their lost, not mine. I do love myself like this, “flaws” and all. They are not flaws, they are parts of me.

LOVE. GRATITUDE. FAITH IN BETTER. PMA ❤

I want to thank all of you who have been my support through this. Thank you to my colleagues who helped and took care of me after my seizure. I am very grateful for this all, thank you.

 

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Friends Like Mine And What They’ve Taught Me

by Anni Vaara

Friends like mine, is a hashtag I use always when there’s been something that kind of blows my mind with love about my friends, because they rock. So this is almost like a appreciation post to my friends. Thank you for being you and in my life.

When I was a kid, or pretty much my whole childhood, I was pretty lone wolf. I just didn’t feel comfortable with that many people and I didn’t understand kids my age, so I usually felt the most comfortable with people a lot older than me. Or with my Grandpa in his woodworking shed. He let me be me, without trying to change anything. He also let me “mow the lawn” at winter, but that’s a whole another story.

It’s taken me most of my life to be confused about why I am the way I am and why is it so hard for me to have friendships. I just didn’t understand how you do that basic social thing. I sucked at it on a level that was pretty amazing. I yearned being alone and on my own so bad but at the same time just wanted someone to call me and be like “you want to do something”. But when that would, very rarely, happen I got very uncomfortable. So there’s a little tricky situation there.

The moment I started feeling like I have people in my life, more than one, that I feel are real friends to me was just couple of years ago. I’ve never had a best friend before now, or I think in a way I have two. But it was only couple of months ago when I actually said to one that am I your best friend, and that childlike feeling when she said that Yes, was so nice.

Me learning more about who I am and why some things are the way they are to me, has been such an eye opening and confusing and helpful and so many other things in one. But what’s been the most gratifying, has been the notion that I understand my own speciality with an appreciation and not with like there’s something wrong with me. The day when I realized that I’m an introvert and highly sensitive person, it was like some door opened that had been shut down so tight that it took a lot of work to even peak through the tiny opening. Since then I’ve started to really get to know myself differently, with a different mind.

What that has done to my journey with people as friends has also opened me, but taught that it’s okay to say that I can’t do something that I promised, because I need to listen to myself more. I’ve learned that I don’t need to always be able to be there for others, while forgetting myself. I’m equally important and the most important to myself.

“There is you and you.

This is a relationship.

This is the most important relationship.

-home”

– Nayyirah Waheed

What those two people who I really truly share my life, have done to me, is to not share too much of myself before the person actually deserves it. This has been a hard lesson for me, because of my “I always believe in the good in people which ends up usually me getting used and in pain”, not the best thing to have always, but well what can you do when you don’t want to think bad about others. I don’t trust easily these days, so if I tell you something personal, it usually means that I think you are trustworthy and I truly wish that you won’t disregard that with your behaviour.

It’s a bit hard these days when it feels at times that others think that we are somehow dispensable and kind of only take what’s good for them in that situation and then throw you and your openness away. It’s crazy hard to find the people who are good, and legit honest. I feel that honesty is something that is not in high regard these days. I don’t need your jokes if you can’t be honest with me about who you are. I’ve done my fair share with compromising, I don’t do that anymore without a good reason so please do not do that stuff to me. Just tell me who you are without thinking that I will straight up judge you. I’ve worked hard with my own insecurities that I’ve had since I was a kid and I just am proud of who I am now and have no interest in changing for the worst anymore, thank you.

But with that said, I am goddamn lucky to have those two in my life. Their honesty and straight forward respect of our relationship is the best thing that has ever happened to me. They support me, push me, challenge the fuck out of me, laugh and cry with me, and all that other stuff that is amazing. But what I love the most is that I truly trust them and can say what ever I need to get out of my chest, that I would never say to anyone else. They also are those good ones, who are there no matter where we are in this world, close or far, the friendship is there.

What my other friends that I’ve gotten these past couple of years have taught me, is that I am good and enough, they like me for me. I have gotten more open and happy with their help, they are all over the world and I am able to ask for help or offer my help if that is needed, and even better when we just feel the want to offer it. Having friends from completely different backgrounds, countries, religions, all of that, makes life so much richer, it opens your eyes, it makes you see people and world with more love and understanding. And we definitely need more of those two in this crazy world of ours.

Now that I am, once again, searching my good old self, getting back to those simple things that are good to me, I need that tough love that I get from my friends. That honest kind of love. They calm me down, make me feel safe, make me push myself to that next level that they see is in me but what I doubt. They remind me that I am okay, and that those things that I am afraid of are okay too. But that they are there for me while I am afraid and want to push on.

2016 is probably the scariest year ever. So much has changed, me the most. I am getting closer and closer to that me that I truly am. I’m letting go, of so many things that I’ve carried in me for years and years. I’m setting myself free, truly free. I am willing to give myself that break, again. I’m realizing how beautiful and diverse and brave I am. The fact that I am not like others is the best part of this all.

What I want to say is, Thank You, who are in my life. You make this journey better than it has ever been, with all the ups and downs. Thank You, I really deeply truly appreciate your friendship. ❤

PMA ❤

 

Less Is More, Once Again…

“Feeling unsure and lost is part of your path. Don’t avoid it. See what those feelings are showing you and use it. Take a breath. You’ll be okay. Even if you don’t feel okay all the time.”

– Louis C.K.

I’ve definitely felt a bit unsure and lost lately with myself. There was a moment of time when I just couldn’t point to what it was that was making me feel like that. And then it hit me, there’s been way too much stuff going on and I haven’t truly respected my sensitive and introverted side.

So without really thinking that this is what I need to do, this weekend I just spend time with myself, doing things that make me feel good and more at peace.

The fact that this world moves so fast and you feel a lot of times that you have to be ON all the time, can feel suffocating and so tiring. Especially if you’ve gone through something big in a span of really little time. Like I did just a week ago. For a while I’ve felt like I need to calm certain parts of my life to be able to be good at what I do and want to do. But I felt lost at how to do that simple thing.

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by Nayyirah Waheed

Yesterday evening it hit me, with the most peaceful way possible. I was doing something that I’ve wanted to do so many times, but just have pushed away. I cleaned my phones photos of all that is ready to be deleted. Over 500 photos. While I was doing that, I wrote down on my notebook those quotes and poems and whatever I had screenshots of. When I was writing them down, I noticed how much I’ve changed in the span of the time I’ve saved them on my phone. It was exhilarating writing certain ones down and just deleting some with the notion that that is not me anymore. Same went with certain photos. It was good to go through them and in a way let go of those things that needed just that.

But what was even more important to notice was that I needed to be on my own and have no distractions around me except the ones I’ve chosen to have. Listening to my favorite music, vibing at times to it. Writing my own things down. Having that quality time with yourself when you truly are enjoying your own company.

I also realized that the fact that I wasn’t doing really anything on my computer was a big part of that peaceful feeling in me. Earlier during the day I had read multiple articles that I’d saved and at times wondered if I ever get around to really read them, now I did. And not doing anything else than that was freeing. I needed that small detox from the super fast paced world that makes us believe that we need to be there and ON all the time. It’s super hard to move on and find who you are when you are bombarded with information all the time. It’s easy to get lost in that all. I certainly did. It’s like you need to be hungry to all of it all the time to be able to be productive, but what it’s really doing is eating your interest in anything properly.

I’ve been really yearning for my old want to write and get things out of my chest in that way, I’ve missed my peace. I’ve felt lazy and super unproductive. And what that week alone in Stockholm woke in me, was that I need that alone time with nothing distracting me. Which is hard to do as I’m still so much of a creature of certain habits. I check my Instagram very often and when I don’t I feel all confused and like I’ve missed so much, when all I am is tired of scrolling through something that I’ve been able to live without while they’ve been posted. Life goes on without me being ON. Which can be scary but at the same time it’s so freeing. But this weekend I had almost like a mini detox from it all. I also had the courage to say to two of my friends I had plans with that, I’m sorry but I need to be on my own now. Something that felt a bit hard to say because I didn’t want to let them or our plans down but knew that I just wouldn’t be good company now if I won’t be on my own enough. Thankfully they understood.

I’ve been thinking a lot of how I am able to be both of “me” at the same time, how am I able to bring together those different sides of me that I’m not always sure how to even be. But feel that I am both without the need to compromise. That’s a thing I have almost like a goal for this year to figure out and get to know myself in that way that I am able to “jump” from one to another without confusion and a feeling that it’s wrong.

It’s easy for me to feel that I need to compromise with them, not being brave enough to be both at the same time. So it’s a learning process. Just like it’s a learning process for me to take my own time without feeling guilty about it.

When you get to know yourself better and better, you stumble across these moments when you realize that you need some planning on how to live your life to be able to live it the way you feel the right for you. And I’ve never been big on planning and now I almost crave some guidance in how I can plan my time better to get those moments of nothing for myself too. Not doing anything moments, without feeling guilty about them.

There’s something really sacred in those moments. Whether you spend them just being, or reading those articles you’ve saved, or that book you’ve decided you read this month, or listening to music, or going for a run. But without them I would be useless in other moments when I need to be able to productive and able to do what I need to do. I am learning, the hard way, how that all works. Slow and steady but getting closer to what works with me the best.

Whether it means that I spend less time on my computer or plan my days better or clear the clutter on my surroundings and while doing that feel clearer in my head, I need to do it. I want to be productive at work without any extra clutter messing my head, and then I want to be able to not be tired afterwards because of the pure amount of stimulus coming from all over the place. I want to be able to be with my friends and not have to cancel plans because I haven’t been on my own enough. Balance is the key and I am in serious need of learning that once more.

Here’s to mistakes and learning from them. Realizing that you’re only a human and that’s okay. ❤

“The biggest lesson I’ve learned is it’s okay. It’s okay for me to be kind to myself. It’s okay to be wrong. It’s okay to get mad. It’s okay to be flawed. It’s okay to be happy. It’s okay to move on.”

– Hayley Williams

PMA ❤

Should I Stay Or Should I Go?

“I am not the first person you loved. You are not the first person I looked at with a mouthful of forevers. We have both known loss like the sharp edges of a knife. We have both lived with lips more scar tissue than skin. Our love came unannounced in the middle of the night. Our love came when we’d given up on asking love to come. I think that has to be the part of it’s miracle.

This is how we heal. I will kiss you like forgiveness. You will hold me like I’m hope. Our arms will bandage and we will press promises between us like flowers in a book. I will write sonnets to the salt of sweat on your skin. I will write novels to the scar of your nose. I will write a dictionary of all the words I have used trying to describe the way it feels to finally, finally found you. 

And I will not be afraid of your scars.

I know sometimes it’s still hard to let me see you in all your cracked perfection, but please know: 

whether it’s the days you burn more brilliant than the sun or the the nights you collapse into my lap your body broken into a thousands of questions, you are the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. I will love you when you are a still day. I will love you when you are a hurricane.”

– Clementine von Radics, Mouthful of Forevers

A thought that crossed my mind more than once this week. It’s been a rough one and my being and mind were not where they normally are. I got caught up with all the noise around me. All those two cents.

Like I wrote on my last post, this summer has been the best, for me just because I’ve experienced so much more and done things that I wanted to do, simple things, but just haven’t before. But this also meant that for the past month, I’ve been with people almost all the time, pretty much all the time. And slowly but surely, I felt a bit off, I wasn’t the calm, rational me that I have been working towards for quite long and been enjoying.

As I once again forgot that I’m an introvert and that I need certain things, as alone time, to function, I also lost myself a bit. There are times in my life that I totally just jump into that enjoyment of others and completely forgot what I need to be able to enjoy it all. I need alone time, at times a lot of it. But now after this past month, I am all of sudden afraid of being alone. Which feels really weird. Me not wanting to be alone and rather spend time with people?! Who am I?

I’m also very sensitive person, but I’ve found ways to take on what comes while recognizing my own self, which happens to be great. I don’t need to change but I do have to be gentle to myself. This is the thing, too much other peoples company drain me and I tend to realize it way too late…

So now that I’ve had some difficulties, or more like challenges, in my life this week, I felt totally overwhelmed and like I can’t get out of that bad and sad feeling. I was just sad and cried and didn’t know what to do, other than dwell on it. That’s not who I am, that is who I was. I have worked my way out of that.

“We cannot selectively numb emotions. When we numb the painful emotions, we also numb the positive emotions.” – Brené Brown

I’ve needed this week to do that and slowly understood what really is going on and what I should do about it. I need to get back to my old calming, balancing ways that I used to do daily basis to keep myself okay. These are some things that work for me:

  • I do oil pulling every morning when I wake up, with coconut oil for 20 minutes and then brush my teeth. It gives me time to start my day but it also has insane health benefits and I feel better when I do it.
  • I try to meditate, something that is really hard for me, but then again, it’s supposed to be. So I will try again.
  • Running, I’ve taken a good months pause from running which was great, but I forgot how much it calms me and clears my mind. So I’m back at it.
  • I need to be alone enough, to restore my energy and get that clear space in my head. It’s very necessary for me. Haven’t done it enough the last month and I can really feel it.
  • I say thanks every night for the day when I go to sleep, it’s my way of ending the day and calming myself ready for sleep.
  • I need to write more again, it’s my way of therapy and it actually makes me feel really good. It’s a challenge but that’s why it’s good for me.
  • This is a funny one, maybe, but I love to collect quotes and hand write them to my notebook. It just makes me feel good, that’s it. 🙂
  • I want to forgive, more forgiveness because it doesn’t only release you from hate and anger but it gives you so much peace and you don’t let the fact control you anymore.
  • I want to say at least once a day to myself that I love myself. ❤
  • And I want to let myself be that weird happy bubble that I have been and what I truly am.

So I’m going to get back to these, and I know that quite fast I will get myself back on track. Which will help me with the challenges and goals I have now in my life. The fact is that if I can’t find another job with my current one, I can’t say yes to this amazing safe haven of an apartment. And if I don’t work towards that goal that means so much to me, I won’t be able to stay in Copenhagen, which would make me really sad, because going back to Finland is not an option.

I feel like part of the anger and sadness that I was dwelling in this week was because I knew that even if I felt like giving up and that nothing makes any sense, I also knew that I can’t just give up because I don’t do that anymore. So obviously that annoyed the shit out of me, me trying to behave like I have before in a time in my life when it just doesn’t work anymore. To be fair, to myself, I am better than that.

It’s normal to get caught up in life, loose yourself at times, but I had to remember that I am not that lost that I can’t get back. I had to go low to remember how great things really are. That’s normal and at times needed. But I can’t let it drown me and make me loose my course.

PMA ❤

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