I’ve been dealing with mental illness for as long as I can remember. Not only my own, but my mothers as well. She is such an amazing woman, but she struggles with Bipolar Schizophrenia. The hardest part is remembering what she was like before it all fell apart. Remembering the woman she is aside from her mental illness. The saddest part is watching someone you love be locked inside their own mind struggling to fight their demons. When I was in middle school I started struggling with depression. I didn’t know it at the time but looking back it’s so clear to me. This was around the time that my mom first started really struggling with mental illness and was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder. At the time they did not diagnose her with schizophrenia, although she showed severe paranoid schizophrenic tendencies. 

I was so young; I didn’t know what was going on with her. All I knew is that my mom was constantly fighting with my step dad and my room was right next to theirs. My step dad didn’t know what was happening or how to handle the situation either. They fought constantly and I blamed my mom, she always seemed to be picking a fight with him about something. I lashed out at her a lot during that time: I started battling my own depression in middle school as well. I was fighting a lot of my own demons that had caught up to me. 

I look back at that time and I feel horrible guilt for the added weight I put on my mom. I imagine the way she felt, and it kills me to remember how I treated her. I’ve apologized so many times since then. I’ve told her how much I love her and how great of a Mom she is and always has been. I tell how how much I appreciate everything she’s done for me. It’s never enough, in my opinion, I just want to hug her and love her through it all.

Watching someone you love and admire go through a mental breakdown is devastating. Watching them crumble and not being able to save them… it’s so unbelievably heartbreaking. 
This is just a small window into my world. 

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Sometimes it’s like my brain is a big ball of string. In order to get the words out I have to slowly unravel every string to get the one in the middle. It gets frustrating, thinking this way. I know I have so much to say and I know that I can express myself well with words. It’s been hard, losing my voice. Each time I try to find it again, it feels further than before. I won’t give up. I will forever search for those words inside my heart. I want to reach people. I want to help people through my experiences and my mistakes. I want to guide others through the darkness they face. Life is hard, but it gets easier when you have someone to share things with. All I want in life is to make connections, with anyone and everyone. It’s hard sometimes, when I feel like I’ve lost my way. I know we all feel that way sometimes, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s discouraging. I feel so blessed and happy but at the same time lost and hopeless. How does this work? Mental illness is a mind boggling thing.