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Do You Understand: A Poem About Living With Mental Illness

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I wake up to the sound of my alarm ringing in my head…
Already my heartbeat is racing in fear and that is how I know I’m not dead.
This is the fourth alarm two hours away from when I should be out of my bed.
But today that won’t happen, there’s too much I dread.

I know it’s time to get up, it’s time to put on my people clothes
I live a lie, I am not what you see, this is not what I chose
Slowly I withered away, my ambitious drive stopped and I just froze.
I don’t understand what’s happening to me but I guess this is how it just goes.

The longer I leave it the worse that it gets,
The worse it gets the more power I give it, like it’s collecting my debts

“Leave me alone!”

I don’t know who this is aimed at anymore, I’m turning to stone…
Is this yelled at a friend down the phone?
Am I talking to myself or is this left completely unknown?

I want to be free, I can’t remember what is it to be simply just… me.
Do I need to be jumping with glee?
Do I need to be down on one knee?
Just for you to see my weakening plea…

I had everything, I still do… but this, this thing it keeps pulling me away
I’m trying… but I don’t know when you will get the clue!
I’m scared, I’m scared that you’re one you’re going to have to pay!
It’s scratching at my scalp and pulling me apart!
I’m getting up and trying to find some motivation to have a restart.
But every try ends in a fall…
It’s getting too hard to keep standing tall

Thinkstock photo via michalpalka

Originally published: June 23, 2017
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