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my idea of "success"

I was always a person with a specific idea of success.

I pushed myself in all my classes, in extracurriculars, and at home.

My belief system that I had built around me told me that if I wasn’t trying to be the best at everything, then I wasn’t trying at all.

I had such impossible expectations for how I looked on paper, that my physical health had begun to take a toll.

The year before I left for college was when everything began to unravel.

With a loss in the family, graduating high school, and the oncoming stress of college, I was no longer taking care of myself as my body started to become sick.

Arriving at college, my body became much sicker.

It was so easy to simply measure it up to anxiety, or the new harsh and competitive environment my body had been thrown into; as well as listening to the doctors who were telling me the same.

One month into school I got a sinus infection. Two weeks later I got covid, only to get covid again only 3 months later.

In between was a never ending spiral of doctors appointments, missed classes, days filled with misery, sleep, and doctors appointments.

Throughout this time I was also diagnosed with anxiety, depression, and ADHD.

My roommate and I were both suspicious of mold in the room.

After multiple tests came back positive for mold, we sent in a formal complaint with the school. 

Christmas break I hoped would be enough to recharge me and begin with a fresh determination. But as time passed, I only felt sicker.

The pain had worsened to the point I knew I would not survive another quarter.

I felt a part of myself die that day I decided not to return.

I felt that in a way I had failed.

Like I had failed college, my classes, but even more I felt i had failed myself. 

 In late January 2022 I spent the night in the ER after having covid for the second time and being debilitated constantly.

What happened that night was something I look back on as traumatic as they dismissed my symptoms as anxiety… and tried to move me into a mental facility.

I felt unheard, abandoned, and broken when they dismissed me without any answers.

After that I spent the rest of my time at home trying to recover both physically and mentally.

Being at home for this year was lonely and empty.

I’ve always loved school – I love the idea of going to class and learning new things and challenging myself.

I wanted to be at school with my friends, taking classes and making progress.

Instead I spent most of my time in bed.

I grew sicker and sicker, going to doctor after doctor.

I spent my year on the living room couch, unable to do simple things such as be outside, make my own meals, and operate how I once did. 

After 8 months of doctors appointments, we found answers last fall.

I was diagnosed with Chronic Inflammatory response syndrome. (CIRS) A biotoxin illness caused by environmental toxins, such as the mold that grew in my dorm room. I have spent the past 6 months detoxing, recovering, and trying to heal.

Things change when people find themselves immersed in the unstable world of chronic illness.

The quality of my life changed dramatically as I struggled this year. It opened my eyes to the boundless resources that lie hidden, deep inside each of us.

My idea of success was once something reflected on a piece of paper, but now I realize it is so much more.

I am stronger than I realized, more capable than I ever knew, more creatively resourceful than I ever imagined, become a more compassionate individual, and I have become more inspired to become a light for someone’s darkness. 

Beyond all that, I am also re-learning things I’ve learned in the past. I’m learning how to be a good friend, sister, and daughter.

I am learning I am the sum of my past but also my current actions and my goals for the future. Every stage in my life, every door that has opened or closed has taught me something that has made me the woman I am today, and whether you know what happened to me behind that door or not, it shaped my life forever. For as Kaci Diane one said;

“I love the person I’ve become, because I fought to become her.”

#CIRS #ChronicIllness #InvisibleIllness #mold #biotoxin #biotoxinillness

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Nobody That’ll Listen #Depression #MentalHealth #lonely

The last week was actually really good, and today was too kind of. I’m just having some first heart break related pain, but nobody that’ll listen or care.

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Nobody That’ll Listen #Depression #MentalHealth #lonely

The last week was actually really good, and today was too kind of. I’m just having some first heart break related pain, but nobody that’ll listen or care.

1 reaction

A great morning!

Good morning and a salute out to all my fellow Veterans! Thank you for your service! As a young 18 year old man, married, 1 child on the way, I joined the Army. I had so many thoughts of my future. As a avid surfer, I put in to go to Hawaii which had been a dream. They instead sent me to Ft Riley,Kansas. 2 years later I received orders for Amberg Germany with the 3/2 Armored Calvary Unit. Others in my unit just shook their heads and said “ your going to hell” Luckily I was able to bring my family. Our squadron was responsible for patrolling the Czech border back during the Cold War. After 3 1/2 years there I was given my PCS papers with 3 choices that I wanted to go to. Of course Hawaii was my first choice. I received my orders for Fort Stewart, Georgia. Home of the biggest Mosquitos you’ll ever see. We all complained, Bitched while we were in the military. Looking back, those truly were the best days of my life. I’ve seen and done things that most haven’t. I had the honor of touring some of the concentration camps where the Jewish were tortured and killed. Germany will not tear them down but instead they use them to never forget. Unlike the US who take down statues in the middle of the night over the Civil War. I guess we will forget! There is so much hatred in this country and it’s our fault. NO infant is born racist, violent, criminal. Unfortunately they learn this from us. Some might ask or say, why does this guy post so much? Easy answer is when my wife goes to work the only one to talk to is my dog. ( he doesn’t enjoy talking unless it’s about food lol ) loneliness is hard. But keeping busy helps. I wish everyone a Happy Memorial Day weekend and please be safe!….David P.S. I never made it to Hawaii lol

26 reactions 8 comments

lonely 3885 #Depression #MentalHealth #Anxiety #

Hi everybody! Am just wondering; has anyone heard from lonely 3885 recently? I am worried about him, we were talking a little bit last Sunday (19th of May).

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So much of our mental health problems that present themselves as stress, depression, anxiety, insecurity, and fear stem from our desire to control. We fight and fight for things to be the way we think they should be and have some sense of control. But sooner or later we must realize that nothing is in control. You must let life flow. How are you doing with giving up your need for control?

Also, as a way to better share advice with you all, I make video responses to your mental health questions.

The last video I made was about what to do if your thoughts make you feel unhappy, lonely, or unsuccessful. If this sounds relevant to you, you can check out the video here:


Otherwise, if you have any questions about mental health, please post in my group and I will try to make a video response specifically for you.

~ Thanks to all. Thanks for all. ~

Speaking of thanks for all, I was hoping we could acknowledge everyone who comments below. I know it seems like a small gesture, but many people here have never opened up to anyone before and being open and honest with strangers can be quite scary. So, if we could show our gratitude by giving their comment a simple reply or heart, I’m sure they would really appreciate your team support. What do you say?

#MentalHealth #MentalHealth #Depression #Anxiety #BipolarDisorder #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #Addiction #dissociativedisorders #ObsessiveCompulsiveDisorder #ADHD #Fibromyalgia #EhlersDanlosSyndrome #PTSD #Cancer #RareDisease #Disability #Autism #Diabetes #EatingDisorders #ChronicIllness #ChronicPain #RheumatoidArthritis #Suicide #MightyTogether

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