Mental health. It’s become just as important and “normal” as physical health in my world, so much so that it surprises me when I come across people who still seem to fear the topic. And yes, I do mean fear. There’s no other word I can attribute to that avoidance, that secrecy and shame or disregard for things like therapy, counseling, antianxiety or antidepressant medication.
But I’m not here to rant about that. I’m here to rant about my own chemicals and brain. Ever since my relatively minor accident a month ago, I have been struggling. Okay, I was struggling before that, mainly with a severe case of the blahs and lack of motivation. But since the accident, that struggle has become more physical. I can’t seem to get enough sleep no matter what. Brain fog happens a lot. And I just can’t seem to connect. Even more frustrating, my mood and emotions are just fine. It’s like I’m just physically depressed. So, while I want to be up and functional, and I know what I need to do to make it happen, it’s like my brain chemistry has totally different plans for my body. My therapist thinks the accident and its resulting stress just triggered this fucky reaction. I’m giving myself one last chance to jumpstart myself with some daily exercise. If I can’t pull it together by next week, I’m checking in with my physician and looking for more or different drugs.
Does this seem TMI? Tough. 240 words of health news that is ultimately no different from my blogging about my mildly-sprained-but-ridiculously-slow-to-heal-ankle that’s making it impossible for me to take my dog on long walks.
My point in sharing it is just that – it’s important that we recognize and acknowledge that mental health affects everything and is important. And it needs to be tended to just as much as physical health, sometimes moreso. As writers, artists, and people who might not live as structured as those with 9-5 type jobs, it can be especially challenging to stay on top of these things. But you have to care for yourself.