What I've Learned
Perhaps this should be titled "what I've re-learned", but the following things are things I see in a new light now, so they are sort of new. These are some observations I have had over the last few weeks. [side note real quick: I have made an agreement with myself that I am going to think less about what I write, and just write more, we'll see how that goes. Also, more comics coming soon, my scanner is on the fritz.]
I have learned that I can't feel anyone else's feelings for them. Obvious of course, but good to acknowledge. If I think someone secretly feels sad, being sad for them is not going to get anything anywhere positive. I also can't control people's thoughts about me, as cool as that would be.
I have noticed that people treat me like I am smarter when I am quiet and cynical and hating existence. They treat me like I am slightly more stupid when I am bubbly and happy and excited about life. I understand, because I used to think happy people were stupid, too. But get serious. That's just an observation it hasn't taught me anything yet.
I have learned that I was right about things getting better. Even though things were off for me mentally, I remained consistent as much as possible with my daily routines. I showed up as much as I could. They are right when "they" say that half the battle is just showing up.
I have remained honest in my interactions with the people who love me. I am grateful to have very compassionate people in my life. And I learned that I am still mostly me when I am going through fog.
The fact that I am depressed or was thinking about death, did not mean I was going to kill myself, and I am so grateful for that truth today. The people who love me were possibly worried, or maybe annoyed, but they didn't throw me in a hospital; best of all, they didn't ignore me. They didn't put pressure on me to do anything in particular- they just wanted me to take care of me.
I have learned that I am the person who puts the most pressure on myself. Aren't we all?
Maybe most importantly, I have learned that a large contributor to my foggy days are the things that I avoid for so long that they become monsters that eat me up and leave me terrified. The obvious solution is to not avoid the things that cause me just a tiny bit of anxiety at the beginning, because they become huge sources of anxiety later. However, when they are just little anxious thoughts, I push them away and assume they will go away, or things will take care of themselves if I don't look for long enough. Obviously this is wrong, but tell that to the Simone who is feeling good and is trying to take care of the bigger things that she put off before this little thing showed up.
I have learned that I don't need to be perfect, but that doesn't mean there aren't things to work on. Working on myself, or on my performance at school or at work does not mean I am striving for perfection. It feels so good to work hard, whether that's on developing new coping skills or coming up with ideas and following through. For example, the other day I woke up four hours late on an important day with some serious deadlines. Let me emphasize: it was not good that I woke up so late. I didn't cry, scream, throw things, or feel worthless. Instead, I took a deep breath and thought "okay, let's go from here, have some coffee" That positive reaction has never happened before. Truly, never. Personal growth, and it felt so good; plus I still have all my plates in tact.
I have learned that just because I may feel depressed, doesn't mean I can't also laugh at things or smile at really cute babies or feel good and dance around when Carl Carlton's "She's a Bad Mama Jama" comes on in the grocery store.