Well, if you’re real, then save me, Jesus.

she fools all of her friends into thinking she’s strong
but she still sleeps with the light on
and she acts like it’s all right on
as she smiles again

Trapped. Utterly and completed trapped.
Dark. Bleak. Hopeless.
Overwhelmed.
Watching helplessly.
Oh, I’m fine.
Oh, everything is swell.
Fooling everyone into thinking things are awesome
When the reality is everything is in pieces around me.

I can’t.
I can’t cope.
OCD thoughts consume.
Anxiety takes its deepest roots and settle in.
Depression covers me and I can’t get away.
I can’t…

I watch my physical health fall. Falling.
As I have med interactions. As I play medication roulette.
As I watch my health continue to falter and baffle doctors.

I try. I try and I try and I try.
But I can’t any longer.

She knows she’s so much more than worthless,
She needs to find a purpose
She wonders what she did to deserve this 

that’s where she lies, broken inside

I tear my heart open, I sew myself shut
My weakness is that I care too much
And my scars remind me that the past is real
I tear my heart open, just to feel 

To say things have been bad lately is an understand. A vast understatement. I am completely trapped by depression. Anxiety. My doctor had me do that PHQ-9 doohickey and my score landed in the severe category, vs the moderate it was before. Things are going poorly.

Everything is falling to shambles. I have so much that needs to be done. Cleaning. Phone calls. Emails. Important grown up stuff but it all falls to the wayside. The physical pain, the emotional pain, everything is too much. Everything hits too hard. I don’t even feel like myself anymore.

And I’m on the verge of failing.
The verge of falling apart.

And I find it kind of funny, I find it kind of sad

It’s been hard lately. That would be an understatement. A really, really big understatement.

My depression has been crippling lately. You see, I have to choose between the meds that make my pain just a bit better, just a bit more bearable, or the meds that help my depression. I cannot have both. So, I can either have the Luvox and lift my depression or I can have the Zanaflex and help my pain. Both? Nope. The side effect was terrifying – I couldn’t even walk across the room to feed my cat without collapsing.

My heart is a mess. That might be an understatement – “disgusting” might be a bit better. But I don’t have the energy to clean it. I don’t have the PCA yet. I don’t have the homemaker yet. I don’t have the help I so badly need yet. They’re “working on it”.

But it doesn’t help my depression to live in someplace like this. It doesn’t help my depression to know that I’m likely moving so. It doesn’t help my depression to know that things might get better, or they might get worse. I’m in limbo, and I don’t like it one bit.

And so, I sit here. “I find it kind of funny, I find it kind of sad, the dreams in which I’m dying are the best I’ve ever had.” Do I want to die? No. But at times I just want a break from this. To not have all this pain – both physical and mental. To just… be free, I guess.

A peak into my life

I don’t remember how old I was when my depression started, but I was fairly young. I’ve been playing Russian Roulette with anti depressants for as long as I can remember, just having them shot at me in hopes that one would work. I’ve been hospitalized. I’ve been in group homes. I’ve been in group therapy. I’ve been in outpatient therapy for years now. And yet, I’m still fucked up in the head.

I feel overwhelming hopelessness. Does it ever get better than this? Is this the life I’m destined to live? Let me tell you, life with depression is sucked. I have confirmed GAD, ED-NOS, PTSD, and Major Depression. If that looks like alphabet soup to you, that’s general anxiety, post traumatic stress disorder, and an eating disorder. I also have OCD, or obsessive compulsive disorder. I’m currently on two medications. And they’re not helping. I’m in therapy. And it’s not helping.

What more can I do? What more do I do? Let me give you a peak at what it’s like. Let me give you an insight of what it’s like. It’s like you’re trying to reach out your hand for help, and you can see someone, something, anything in the distance, but it’s just barely out of grasp. You reach and you reach and you try to grab onto that something – that hope, that thing in the distance you’re hanging on for, but it’s just out of grasp. You can’t cling it. You can’t grasp onto it. And you’re feebly trying to hold onto it, but instead you’re just grasping at thin air.

It’s like you’re standing in the middle of a crowded room. People all around you, but you’re ignored. You’re invisible. No one sees you. No one sees the pain you’re hiding. The grief, the sorrow, the agony, the heartbreak.

You weep and you cry, alone. You’re broken. The pieces of the Lego kit don’t make the castle, it makes a broken puzzle. You try so hard to be whole, you try so hard to be COMPLETE, but something is missing. Something just isn’t there. You want it to be, oh, you want it to be, but it’s not.

You’re empty. Completely empty. You try to find things to fill you up – cutting, drinking, video games, movies, school, but nothing fills it. Instead, you become even more empty. Even more withdrawn. Even more depressed. Everything falls apart. Everything falls at your feet. You try so hard, so hard to hold it together, but you can’t.

You panic over everything. You freak over everything. You count things. You arrange things. You make things just so. You replay everything over and over in your head. Rewind the video tape, start it over. You check things constantly, because what if you didn’t lock that door? What if you didn’t turn off that oven? You taunt yourself with every possible thing that could go wrong, and you’re driving yourself nuts inside your own head.

Suicide sounds appealing. Not because you want to die, but because living is just too much. At times, it’s at the point where you don’t want to live but you don’t want to die. You just want to cease to exist. To pull into a cocoon, and rest and rest and rest. You want everything to go on around you, while you’re just hiding from the world. But at the same time, you want to be out in that world you’re hiding from. You want to be free from your thoughts and your chains and your baggage and your bondage and your past.

Sleep isn’t even a rest, sleep isn’t even a solace. Nightmares taught you, you struggle to fall asleep, you struggle to stay asleep. Tossing and turning, fear and panic. This is your every night. This is your life. This is how you are.

And this is what life with my mental health is life. This is just a small peak. I could go longer, but I doubt anyone gives a shit enough to read it. This is how I have to function. And I hate it. I hate every moment of it.

By the yard it’s hard, by the inch, what a cinch

When I was a child, I was in Patch the Pirate Club, as well as had a couple Patch the Pirate cassettes. Simply put, Patch the Pirate is a MAJOR NAME in Children’s Christian Music, especially in the fundamentalist Christian sect. Patch aims to teach values, not only of faith, but also of morals and character. I actually know songs about loving broccoli and cleaning my plate, about not being a wiggle worm, and many other things that really call for another blog entry. But there are a few songs that have stuck out with me, so here is the first I’m going to write about. I may write others, I may not.

“When mountains tower ragged and high,
rise to the challenge, look to the sky
Trust in the Lord, and start to climb,
Reach for the goal one step at a time

Little by little, inch by inch
By the yard it’s hard, by the inch what a cinch
Never stare up the stairs but step up the steps
Little by little, inch by inch.”

I think this is a powerful message and absolutely profound in a simple children’s song. When I think of mental illness recovery, be it from depression, an eating disorder, bipolar, borderline personality disorder, self injury… when I think of recovery, so often it IS a mountain towering, ragged and high. It’s overwhelming when we first look at it. But when we step back and take it little by little, inch by inch, it’s so much easier. Recovery doesn’t happen overnight. I don’t know how much longer I’ll be in treatment. Months? Years? It’s unknown at this point in recovery. But I do know I take it little by little.

If it means when my eating disorder is in full force, and all I eat for the day is a sandwich and drink some tea, that’s little by little. Each day, I can add a bit more food, be it a side, be it another sandwich if sandwiches are my current “safe” food, etc. If my depression is in full force and I don’t want to leave the apartment, much less my bed, I can take it little by little. Be it just getting up, taking a shower, and getting dressed. I don’t necessarily have to go DO anything, but taking the step to get up is a progress. And that’s the thing – progress is a process. It’s something we do little by little, inch by inch.

I think that it’s important to know that recovery happens. It’s possible. But sometimes, it’s overwhelming. Sometimes I feel like finding the right medication combination is never going to happen. Sometimes I feel like therapy is going nowhere, sometimes I feel like progress is being made, sometimes I feel like I’m backsliding and for each step I’ve taken, I’ve gone back twelve.

But that’s not the point. The point is I’m trying. The point is I’m living. The point is that every time I make a good life choice, however small, however insignificant it seems at the time, it’s a step toward recovery, even if it’s just an inch, even if it’s not even quite an inch yet.

The point is I’m moving. The point is I’m getting there. The point is, little by little, I’m working my way towards there. I’m “reaching for the goal, one step at a time.” And by taking lots of little steps, maybe one day, I’ll overcome. And yes, I’ll reach that goal one step at a time.

These secrets are walls that keep us alone

Sometimes I wish I were someone other than me
Fighting to make the mirror happy – Bethany Dillon

I hate it. I hate how every day is a battle. I hate how  every frick-fracking meal is a battle. Even one BITE is a battle. It’s a fight. It’s a war. It’s an all out battlezone against myself. I didn’t chose this, though some days I wish I had because then I could just chose for it all to be over. Some days I wish it was more of a choice, because then I could just chose not to be this way. Chose not to live in this hellhole. Chose not to live in this torment inside my head for every meal, every bite, every time.

And soon, obsessing over food and meals and bites becomes not enough. Certain foods can’t touch each other. Certain foods can. Certain foods are okay to eat. Others aren’t (gluten allergy not withstanding). And the obsession and control spreads out. Certain numbers are okay. Others aren’t. And everything becomes a downward spiral of control and spins wildly out of control. And I can’t just snap out of it. I can’t just stop being anal. I can’t just cowboy up.

How I wish I could! How I wish I could just get over it. How I wish I could just start eating again. How I wish it was just that simple! I want it to be like that. I want it to be like that. I wish I could eat without my head tormenting me. I wish I could eat without such torment, such inner anguish. I hate it, I hate every bit of it.

I don’t want to be like this. At times, I find myself thinking that I wish I hadn’t chosen to have an eating disorder then I want to whack myself upside the head because who the hell does? No one chooses to have an eating disorder. It’s a psychological illness, just like depression or anxiety or a post traumatic stress disorder. And it’s not my fault. I can chose to get help and chose to overcome it, but it doesn’t change the fact it makes every day a struggle, every minute a fight.

And I hate myself for it. I hate myself for the fact that I was dealt this deck, on top of my medical problems, on top of my trauma past, on top of everything else. I hate myself for who I am today, even though none of it is my fault and it isn’t rational, I still hate so deeply although I know it isn’t right. Kinda screwed up but I guess it’s part of the cycle, part of how it goes.

I hate who I am. I hate who I’ve become. I hate what these thoughts have done to me.

i need some distraction, oh beautiful release

i hate how i’m feeling lately.
i don’t know that it’s depression. i’m not sad. i’m not sad, no, not really. sadness isn’t the quite the right word.  i mean yeah, i feel overwhelming sadness some days but it’s not the overarching feeling. it’s not the primary feeling. it’s not the main thing i feel.
apathy? sure, i’ve given up caring about cleaning (really need to do that, my area of the apartment is godawful) and i’ve given up caring about life, the future, what happens to me. i have hopes and dreams but who am i fooling? they’ll never happen. my health will never improve to the point where i’m able to hold down a job. i can barely handle school, what kind of idiot am i to think that i’ll be able to have a future?
then, what? hopeless? i guess you could say that, but i don’t even know if it’s the right word. sad? depressed? none of these words seem quite right. lonely? scared? overwhelmed? i don’t even know what words describe me anymore. if there are words. if there are any words.
i’m scared to see a doctor, scared to be honest. scared to let people see how things really are. what if they judge me? what if they don’t like me? what if they can’t help me? so instead, i let myself spiral.
i let the anxiety take over. i let the fear take over. i let the what-ifs take over.  when talking, face-to-face talking, i either lock down or i’ve been dealing with this stuff for so long that i’ve learned how to mask it, learned how to downplay it, so things aren’t really as bad as i realize. i tend to downplay things and let them go into they are super sonic bad… case in point, recent ear infection.
i feel scared and helpless and alone and like a failure.
and this emptiness. and despair. and the feeling that i will never pull myself out.
i know i’m not fooling everyone, that would be naive. but why do i try? why don’t i give people a chance? it’s like i’ve been hurt and hurt and hurt so i’m scared to show the truth.
will they love me less? doubtful. so why do i let myself believe such things? why don’t i just trust? why am i so scared?
why do i feel like falling into self injury? and i’m not suicidal, but i’ll be damned if i don’t think about death. if i don’t think about a break from the mental and physical pain. i know it’s not an option, but damn if it doesn’t come to mind.
i hate feeling like this. i hate feeling that things will never get better. because… what if that feeling is right?

But people have problems that are worse than mine, I don’t want you to think I’m complaining all the time

I feel I’m on the verge of another depressive spell, and it sucks. Likely triggered by all the back to school posts. No back to school for me. Nope. No job, one class, just stuck in the same monotony. I’m entering physical therapy, trying to get a grasp on my physical pain, and my mental health? THAT’S a frick-fracking joke and a half.

I have a script for Effexor across the room, from a useless appointment with a psychiatrist. From one who pushed me for details about my PTSD, why I haven’t had sexual relations, wouldn’t listen to my past medical history (she tried to put me on Prozac when I told her no less than five minutes previously that Prozac had made me worse), etc. For this week at least, I’ve made the choice to stay  off antidepressants, though it doesn’t mean it’s set it stone and I won’t at some point hunt for a new psychiatrist. But there’s a part of me, this twisted, demented part of me, that’s tempted to fill the Effexor script and take it in an act of self-sabotage. Even though I know that since it’s in the class as Cymbalta it’s a really stupid idea, and even though I know it’ll jack with my heart rate, it’s the irrational, self-injuring part of my brain. Even though I know I’ll likely have side effects from it, even though I know things will spiral further out of control, it’s so tempting just to completely throw the towel in and screw things up. I hate how twisted my brain is at times.

My eating has gone to crap. Most days? I’m lucky to get one meal in and enough fluids. Some days? No eating happens. My weight is dropping again and I’m finding it hard to care. I’m coming close to cutting again and this is preventing me from it. I don’t want to cut and I don’t want to not eat, but right now I just need some way to hurt myself to control my depression. I am in such a bad state, aren’t I? I’m not suicidal. That’s not a problem at all. But if hurting myself keeps me alive for now… I just don’t even know at the moment.

I feel like I’m crumbling. I feel like I’m tumbling. I feel like I am falling to shreds. I hate who I am. I hate who I am becoming. I hate how I feel. And I am so helpless. I feel beyond hopeless. I’m at the point where I don’t know if things will ever get better. How can they? So many antidepressants have failed. Maybe I’m destined to be a failure. Maybe things will never get better. Maybe I’ll just fall to pieces and there won’t be a way to duck tape me back together.

I hate how I let myself fall this low. I hate how I feel like I’m crumbling to pieces. I need a break. I need a vacation. I need out for awhile. I need to go somewhere that’s not here. Somewhere away. If I don’t fall apart before then. If I don’t fall to pieces. I hate how depression is. I hate how my depression makes me irrational and want to make irrational decisions. I hate how it makes my brain all foggy, like I’m seeing through mashed potato covered lenses instead of clear ones. I hate how it makes me feel.

I don’t like what I’m becoming. I don’t like who I am. I hate how when I talk to therapists and doctors that I just lock down. I retreat within myself. It’s safe in there. It’s scary and dark, but it’s comfortable and familiar, even though it’s a terrifying place. Because even though it’s dark and scary – it is what I know and so there I stay. I don’t lock down on purpose, and then the doctor gets pissed off that I don’t talk to them when it isn’t that I don’t want to, it’s that I can’t. The words and feelings are completely locked and trapped inside me and I can’t pull them out. I want to talk, but it’s so hard. It isn’t easy. And I feel so trapped. I feel so trapped within myself.

I don’t know what to do. I don’t know what I’m becoming. All I know is I’m falling… falling… falling…

Let the weak be strong, let the right be wrong. Throw the stone away, let the guilty pay, it’s independence day

The teacher wonders, but she does not ask
It’s hard to see the pain behind the mask
Bearing the burden of a secret storm,
Sometimes she wishes she was never born

I suppose two things come to mind on October 31st for the average person. The first is, obviously, Halloween.


The second, primary in Christian especially Lutheran, circles, is Reformation Day.

Before Halloween candy, before Martin Luther being all “TAKE THAT CATHOLICISM!”, another day comes to mind. Independence Day. Now, before you think I’ve lost my marbles, I know it’s not 4 July yet. There won’t be any fireworks tonight, although there will be in my heart. And there won’t be cookouts and baseball, because I really don’t care much for either.

Seven years. I moved out seven years ago. And while it was undeniably the best decision I ever met, it was undoubtedly the most painful. No 18 year old should have to make the decisions I made that day, and no 18 year old should have to live through that.

I was, after all, only 18 years old. And I turned my father into the police. I had people I thought I trusted turn against me. It’s so hard to believe it’s been seven years since all that happened. But there are still nights I miss my Daddy.

Yes, he’s a colossal class A asshat. But we’d watch movies together, or sometimes I could convince him to hook up the SNES or my Genesis and we’d play video games. We’d play “Name That Tune” to the Oldies Radio Station, and I’d kick his ass in Bible Trivia. He’d take me to see the movies. I can’t really name that many good qualities about him and he is, at his core, a drunken pedophile, but dammit, he’s my father. I miss him. I miss what I lost, I miss what I never had, I miss what I never will have. I guess that’s normal and I guess it’s the way it should be. But at the same time… I still deeply grieve.

But I’ve changed so many in seven years, and I will change in so many more. Next Halloween, I’ll be wearing a costume for the first time (and it’ll be awesome). The next year, I’ll continue to heal and grow and change. And who knows? Maybe one October, it’ll just pass as fleeting memories.
Like my father’s come to pass, seven years has gone so fast.

Me at eighteen. Yup. Really, not much has changed.



And with a broken wing, she still sings
She keeps an eye on the skies
With a broken wing, she carries her dreams
Man, you ought to see her fly

Through despair and hope, through faith and love

Seven years ago, everything was changing. Little did I know that just over a month later, everything would further spiral out of control. Me, the control freak that I am, would be left utterly helpless and shattered. How was I to know that age 18, soon everything I knew would change? How was I to know at 18, everything was going to be different soon? How was I to know that I would soon sink into utter despair, and not know when I would find hope again?

September 28, 2005 was the day I totally melted down from stress in the middle of my College Prep World History class. I remember just bursting into tears during a study period, and my teacher trying to console me. But me, being the stubborn person I am, threw up my walls and refused to let him in. Idiotic move there, Ang. Soon things would change so much. But I wonder how different it would have been had I opened up to the teacher then. But I was scared to death. I was only 18 and while legally an adult, if I told the other people at school what was going on, legal systems would be involved. Kind of funny how just over a month later, my faith in the legal system was shattered as well. Kind of funny how my faith in the church and the legal system both took a suckerpunch, and I still haven’t regained faith in the legal system.

I guess it’s kind of funny now that I’m going into the ministry. It’s kind of my ultimate “screw you, bitches!” to the people who hurt me in the church. It’s the proverbial middle finger to those who told me I’d never amount to anything, I’d never graduate college. Because you know what? I’m going to make a difference. My story of despair was not for naught, and I can turn it into hope. If I can make a difference in just one life, I will have had an effective ministry. If I can help just one teenager, just one child, if I can protect the child that others failed to protect, my work is complete.

I want to help the ones who slip through the cracks. The ones who fall to the wayside. It doesn’t matter if no one else loves them, I want to love them. To turn despair into hope, and to administer faith and love. To be someone they can trust, and not someone who will shatter everything when one of the darkest secrets come to life.

And that is my dream. One of them. The other is to work in a summer camp for disabled children, but that’s another post. Another day. Another night.

It’s bedtime. Alarm goes off too early, but it’s another little sleep night. Been too many of those lately, but not much I can do about it at the moment.