Online Diary: After the storm

I’ve had another day where I’ve been this calm in the last month but I knew it was the eye of the storm, I didn’t trust it. This one, I think, might signal the end. A month and a day ago I thought I might write a blog on my experience of managing my mental health and being in a musical theatre show. A month ago I went into a mental health crisis. I don’t want to write about that, it’s currently too raw and close to the surface. It’s all very blurry any way, mental illness messes with the memory. I do want to talk about what happens now.

Now I have the joy of looking around at all the smashed pieces of the picture that makes up my life and trying to put them back together. Some pieces are hidden in dusty corners and forgotten, they were dropped when I got ill and now I need to see if they are still there. Some pieces are smashed from the force of the storm: relationships I have pushed and strained, opportunities I have wasted or squandered. Some of these pieces have been smashed before multiple times on similar occasions. They are often unrecognisable and warped. I need to work out what I can do to them, if anything to get them to fit back in the frame.

I have been through this process hundreds of times before, though this storm has been particularly long and unforgiving. My life has been sellotaped, superglued and duct taped. It’s never easy. It involves mourning time that I feel like I’ve lost and wasted. There is frustration that I have so much work to do to get back to ‘normal’ and that I have to do it alongside all the daily tasks that don’t disappear to give me time to catch up. I am worn out by the cyclical nature of it all and I am worried about how it makes me appear to the outside world: unreliable, inconsistent, high-maintenance, trouble.

I know, as I slowly sort myself out, that crisis will come again. It may be a month or two, it may be tomorrow. So why pick myself up at all? Well, to a certain extent I don’t feel like I have choice, but there must be part of me that thinks that the picture, as wonky and misshapen as it now is, deserves to be on display.