Am I Surviving Mental Illness?


sur·vi·vor

noun

a person who copes well with difficulties in their life.

sur·vive

verb

continue to live or exist, especially in spite of danger or hardship

Have you been there? Are you there now? Has life swept you up into a cloud of darkness with no sign of tossing you back down? It’s a hard place to be. I know. Sometimes you weave in and out of no control and other times you’re calm and steady but still nervous of what could be hidden around the corner. Maybe that’s just what tragedy does to you, how pain hits you. Sweeps you up into all its chaos and takes claim of your life.

So you self-help. You seek counsel. You sleep it off. Eat it off. Whatever you can do in attempt to uproot those demons waging war inside your heart, your soul, your mind. Still, there is a striking difference between living and surviving. Between coping and growing. I know because I have walked those roads.

Have you been there? Are you there now? Or is it just me? We all have a story. And inside of that story lies a million different stories that led you to where you are now. They aren’t all pretty, and many may have been nearly impossible to live through; mine have. But I am here now, and so are you. Alive, even if we don’t feel alive. Processing. Contemplating.

Some days for me are more about survival than living. Some days are just about getting out of bed. Putting one foot in front of the next. The beautiful thing is our lives are stories. Every beautiful and tragic moment of it. Every climb, every fall. It is all a unique display of journey and failure and healing. And more importantly only you can find that story. Only you can write that story. Only you can share that story. No one knows it quite like you.

I want to tell you it gets better, but I can’t. It just shifts and bends and changes; it always changes. But there is magic in the change. In the transformation and there is magic in our ability to guide it, sometimes without even knowing.

If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.
If you need support right now, call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255

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