It’s like mental illness is this sinkhole.
You stand at the edge, and it’s just that pesky bastard Depression. But then your foot starts to slide, and Anxiety is pulling at your legs, dragging you into the mud. The compulsions and obsessions are clawing at your arms, your shoulders, drawing you in further until you’re overwhelmed and drowning.
That’s where I have been.
At first I was just at the edge, but I’d been there before, I knew what was coming. Even as the mud pulled at me, I fought to pull myself back up. I took my medication. I threw out a life line and called to find a therapist. And when the obsessions and compulsions became too much to bear, I found things I could focus on constructively.
Yesterday, with anxiety swirling around my head, I found a project and focused all my energy there.
For awhile now, I’ve been wanting some sort of day planner. Yes, I have a spiffy smartphone to keep track of my appointments and it works wonderfully. However, if I’m ON said phone trying to schedule another appointment, I need to see my week/month laid out in front of me so that I don’t double book myself. My memory isn’t what it used to be.
My fiance happened to have an old planner lying around that he happily passed along to me. I set up the laptop and searched for printables to help me organize my life. I found PrintablePlanners.net where I was able to download and print blank planner pages specifically designed for the model I had. While my printer spewed out page after page, I dug out my scrapbook paper and crafting tools. I cut, glued, and hole-punched for the better part of the day.
The finished product might have taken me all day, but it was the most calming thing I’ve done all week. Not only was I able to focus all my anxiety, I now have a functional way to organize all of my appointments, my medications, and remember those pesky birthdays that keep sneaking up on me.
I also laminated printed copies of my medications, my allergies, doctor’s info, and emergency contacts to place in the front of the planner. Now I’m prepared for any sort of emergency or brain fog.
Depression and anxiety are still pulling at me, but I’ve got my arms wrapped around a nearby tree. I see my new therapist this Friday and I have hopes that she’ll be able to help me free my feet from the mud.