After Mental Health Issues: The Paradox of Feeling Good

Young Man in Wheat FieldIt’s hard to write when you’re feeling well. There is nothing heavy on the brain anymore, and it makes it hard to express something that is not there. How do you stay connected to something when your connection is moot?

Since taking my new medication, I have been feeling 100% better. This is great—please don’t think I am writing just to complain. I’m not. I’m writing because no one ever tells you what to do when you are feeling better.

How do you live your life and still be connected to something that is still there, yet silenced?

When you’re in the thick of mental health issues, you don’t think about anyone but yourself. It’s hard to understand that people are out there, like you, suffering. Once the suffering is over, it’s hard to come up from the storm, look around, and understand what happened and why. Maybe that’s why no one tells you what happens after feeling better: because no one really knows. Mental health issues shape the lives they touch so much that you’re waiting for the next episode, instead of living.

That’s no way to live.

I’ve decided that, since no one wants to discuss how to make your life work after a tornado of mental health issues, I’m going to make it up as I go. I’m going to dip myself into my mental health community. I’m going to make sure I stay on top of mental health issues—not just for myself, but for my community. I’m going to do mental health fundraisers, participate in runs/walks, blog more, and even sign up for my local NAMI organization and see if my services could be used. I’m going to learn a language, plan a trip somewhere, and go out and do something I’ve never done. And I’m going to live without the fear of my illness popping up.

Now, I know this might not work for everyone. It takes a lot of get out from under the cloud or turn a new leaf after mental health issues, but you have to. Your life depends on it, and you could help so many with the experiences that you have gained.

A lot of other people’s mental health situations have popped up around me lately. My coworkers have talked to me about their depressions, my mother’s moods have been going up and down (oh, yeah, I get it from her), and mental illness stories have been popping up on my feeds. This has to be for a reason: The reason is so my connection with myself and my community is never severed. Having a mental illness has made me more aware of the people and situations around me. I can never lose that.

So here is to feeling better and hoping to understand that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Once there, I’m going turn around, look back, and reflect, then turn back around and help someone. Here’s to you for doing the same.

Good luck, my friends!

OhTemp writes a blog called Bipolar, Unemployed, and Lost, which you can read at bipolarunemployedlost.com.

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  • Cassie

    Cassie

    July 11th, 2015 at 11:16 AM

    It can be a challenge when you have felt so bad for so long, to then feel good and you almost don’t know how to act feeling that way.

  • Steven

    Steven

    July 13th, 2015 at 9:26 AM

    There have also been those days when I feel good but I start to actually feel a little guilty about it. I know too many other people who are still struggling and who are in pain, and yet I feel good and I don’t really know what to do with all of that. I know that I should be content in my own happiness, but there is always that feeling of guilt like maybe I don’t deserve it when there is till so much hurt in other people’s lives

  • Maranda

    Maranda

    July 14th, 2015 at 11:22 AM

    Focus on the more positive things in life now.
    You have been given this magnificent second chance to love life and enjoy life all over again
    \so take the bull by the horns and go with it
    Celebrate the freedom that feeling good again can bring!

  • Teri

    Teri

    July 15th, 2015 at 1:27 PM

    A Lot of people would try to put their past behind them but it sounds like you want to take what you have learned from your own personal experience with this and do something good with it.

    That is awesome!

  • jeffrey

    jeffrey

    July 16th, 2015 at 11:48 AM

    but when you feel bad there is almost something poetic that comes from writing when you are morose- you take that away and then you sort of lose your identity

  • anita s

    anita s

    July 20th, 2015 at 10:40 AM

    I love the fact that you are seeing this as an opportunity to help someone else who is struggling, to let them know that there is that light at the end of the tunnel. Whether you see it at this moment or not, it is there and it is waiting to shine on you when you are ready.

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