EIF #2 — The Global Warming of My Mental Illness (A [Very Long] Poem)

Author’s note: Hey everybody! I am super nervous about posting this because 1. It’s been a hot minute since I posted anything resembling “poetry” on this blog, and this particular poem is super long. 2. It’s a really vulnerable piece I wrote during a manic episode earlier this year, after coming out of a really dark depression.

The first half-ish is pretty sad, but hopefully it’s worth the read.

TW: Brief, non-descriptive death mention.

Please let me know what you think in the comments!


Desperately ill,

The ink, oh, it spills from the corners of my mind.

Black fades to white,

A longstanding fight with the monsters in my mind.

The harsh winters, they nip at my fingers, and so I light a fire.

But I stand too close to the flame.

And oh, the fire burns, but oh, so do the words, as they tangle my throat and on them I choke,

But nothing, nothing hurts like it used to, ’cause even the burns, I’m used to.

When everybody leaves you.

You are alone,

And nowhere is home.

And everything new is just something else to get used to.

And people are sure to abuse you.

And they’ll use you.

Til you’re not you.

Just a “used to”.

Til you don’t even know what you used to be.

So, if You will,

Oh, I’d like You to spill,

Just a splash of truth on these lies.

Maybe it’ll get me through the night.

Just tell me, how long must I fight?

And tell me, is this even right?

And am I enough to survive?

The summer comes but once a year,

And every year it gets a little colder.

And the harsh winters, they nip at my fingers.

It’s too cold to light a fire.

So, as the ashes smoulder,

I pull my sweater closer,

But try as I might,

I can’t win this fight,

It’s forty below and I can’t see the light!

They told me that all brokenness, no matter the level distress, will all be a means that leads to an end, and if that’s the truth, I’ll will be such a good mess at the end, when I’m dead.

They say that brokenness makes you stronger.

But I’m just getting bitter,

The battle gets bigger.

And the summer gets colder.

And fall just gets greyer.

And I truly don’t think that this spring will come.

But soon the year will end,

And then what?!

What is the point? I scream to the void,

Is anybody listening? Am I just making noise?

Oh, what is the point? I scream to the void,

Am I alone in this thing?

Come back, and answer me!

You’re the one who created this brain that I’m hatin’ and my demons, they refuse to leave.

My winters get harsher and summers get colder and You’re awfully bold to assume,

That I, just a girl,

Can handle this world,

With nobody’s hands to hold,

Or is it me that’s being too bold?

I stand on a rock,

And I scream up at God,

And I must be a sight to behold.

The King of Creation must feel devastation when He sees my desolate soul.

But if I’m gonna fight,

He should turn on a light,

‘Cause a battle in darkness seems a one sided fight.

So give me a knife, or give me a pen, give me a weapon with which I defend myself.

And a light for my path couldn’t hurt.

But now this is greedy,

I’ll stop being needy, but please, just answer my cries for help!

And He said,

Trust in My plan,

This isn’t the end,

Bitterness leads only to bitter ends.

You can be bitter or you can be better,

You make the choice now, it’ll serve you forever.

This battle is almost over.

Victory is nigh.

And yes, you are strong to survive.

So, take your madness and turn it to light.

Oh, you’ve had the switch this whole time!

Power, it spills from the ink on my quill and I no longer shake in the cold.

My hands they may tremble, for but a moment,

But only ‘cause I’m growing old.

A life was lived long and to full.

The earth, oh, she creaks beneath my feet,

Signs of a weathering storm.

But I’m not alone anymore.

And together we weather this storm.

So in the harshest winter, the cold still nips my fingers,

But I use what made me bitter,

And I let it fuel my fire.

The fire, it is warm, but it does me no harm,

I stand far away from its flame,

The words come out fast and they make sense at last,

And they no longer choke me inside.

I put pen to paper and become a narrator of the stories I have in my soul.

So what I learned in the seasons is that even when it gets colder,

The summers will get warm again,

It can’t stay cold forever.

And you must not surrender.

March on in the darkness, and don’t ever quit ’cause the moment before you surrender, is when you’re the closest to light.

The madness that chases you down and threatens to bury you now is the very same madness that summons your sadness, but can also bring joy or delight.

So harness the darkness and drag it behind you until you can set it on fire.

And the fire will burn,

But no, it won’t hurt,

And oh, what a sight to behold!

The warmth and the light will fuel you at night,

And you will be safe and sound.

Spring brings new life to the world,

And the summers will get warmer,

So, even if the winter sends a chill through your bones,

Don’t fret,

Every season comes to an end,

And fall will put things right again,

But only if you remember,

That you must not surrender, as a pen must have a holder, and your story begs to be told, in only the way that you know.

And only your madness can turn all your sadness into a light.

MondayTuesdayFriday

It’s Monday,

No, maybe it’s Tuesday,

Scratch that, it has to be Friday by now.

I don’t know anymore, and if I’m being really honest, I don’t care.

I can’t keep track of my days.

Everything blurs together. Everything is the same.

What is the point?

Why do I open my eyes every MondayTuesdayFriday?

To eat Cheerios and attempt to fight the inevitable death I will face in time?

To smile at the air, at the ground, at strangers whose mouths turn up and down robotically?

To type letters in sequence we declare “words”?

Are they supposed to mean something?

If you say a word enough, your brain realizes you’re not making sense.

Word.

Word.

Word.

Does it still look okay to you?

Word.

Word.

Word.

How about now?

It’s lost its meaning to me.

Everything has lost its meaning to me.

Do I open my eyes every MondayTuesdayFriday to do sit ups in hope for a “summer body”?

To impress you?

To impress me?

To impress God?

I know by that look of disdain, you could not care less.

I, myself, am unimpressed,

And nobody can impress God.

So what is the point?

I live in this state of uncertainty, of blurriness, of never knowing what day it is, and I feel ill in this MondayTuesdayFriday place in which I reside.

The Words We Speak (Part 2) — Mental Health Post #26

Hello, hello Friends 🙂 Yesterday I rewrote that awful “addiction recovery” commercial (check out that post here. Link opens in new window), but today I wanted to help rewrite some everyday situations.

Here are a few things not to say about (and DO NOT say these things directly TO) someone with a mental illness, and some things you could say and/or do instead.

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The Words We Speak (Part 1) — Mental Health Post #25

All right, Friends, I had a few different ideas about what I wanted to post today but none of them were really working out when I sat down to write them, and then I saw a commercial and I found my topic.

Let me start by clarifying, this is more of a rant than anything, but I am both disappointed and disgusted by the way people talk about mental health in general, especially the ones involved in “helping” in the recovery process.

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The Box — Mental Health Post #19

Most of the time, it doesn’t matter whether I’m with ten people or a hundred, I still feel disconnected somehow, as if there’s a thick glass box between us.
It takes time for their messages to reach me and by then they’ve moved on, and my words bubble into the empty space around me.
I slouch against the hard wall of my box and wait for the event to be over, frustrated with my inability to change the fact that everything is happening without me, but the truth is, people are exhausting and I’m too tired to care. Even if I could get out, I’m not sure that I would.
Despite the fact that I curse the glass for making me miss out on things that seem to make others so happy, I’m grateful for its presence, too, because in exchange for my isolation it offers protection. Inside its walls, I cannot make a fool of myself, and I don’t have to worry about getting hurt.
Occasionally a passerby will tap on my glass and try to break through to me, but I wave and smile, pretend I’m fine so they walk by to meet someone who is actually here.

Welcome To Wonderland (A Dark Poem) — Mental Health Post #16

I realize that this probably takes away from the “writing” portion of this post, but I had to make a disclaimer: this poem is quite old and I was in an extremely dark place when I wrote it, and it doesn’t apply to me anymore.

It almost feels wrong to post this for mental health month, honestly, but I think it’s important to see the darkness as well as the light. This was not meant to be a glorification of mental illness, it’s just how I personally felt in the middle of the darkness. Please, please do not read any further if dark themes upset you. Stay safe, Friends.

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An Open Letter To My Depression – Mental Health Post #15

I refuse to succumb to your demands to roll over and play dead like I’m your pet.

This is not a request. I’m taking control over my life from this day forward, and here are my demands: you will stop breathing down my neck.

You will stop trying to drag me back into your suffocating grasp.

You’re going to stop planting these sick thoughts in my head, and stop making me believe I’d be better off dead.

Your clutch is dark and unforgiving, but I am not ready yet to quit living, so I’ll push back on your firm hold, and fight until the day you let go. 

You’ve tried for years to tell me that I’m not really here, but I hope this letter makes it clear: I’m not dead yet, and I refuse to pretend.

Do you hear me, you soul sucking coward? I’M NOT DEAD YET!

*Trigger Warning Suicide* — Mental Health Post #10

Hello again Friends, it’s another day in Mental Health Month and I present to you another topic that confuses me.
Let me preface this by saying that I am absolutely positive I’m not the only one who experiences what I’m about to describe, however, I’m not quite sure of how common (or uncommon) it is. I’ve seen some posts on Yahoo Answers, and asked a few friends who have depression/suicidal thoughts if they’ve ever experienced the same thing and the responses have been mixed, but most of the people I’ve spoken to have leaned toward the “I’ve never had that” side of the spectrum.
At any rate, it’s not something I hear or see talked about very often, and I’m not sure if it’s because there’s no real solution to the problem, or if it’s a difficult topic to talk about because of how weird it sounds to anyone that hasn’t dealt with it, or if it’s really not that common, but I don’t shy away from very many topics — if any — so here we go. The topic for today is: casual thoughts of suicide.
Now, let me be clear, I don’t mean the early phases of actually planning a suicide attempt (that phase where you might be thinking about it but don’t have the details nailed down yet. That’s what doctors and intake nurses classify as “casual thoughts of suicide”, apparently). No, I mean in my personal experience suicidal thoughts occur even on “good days” when absolutely nothing is going on to trigger them.
Before I started to live with these thoughts, I never would’ve considered thoughts of suicide “casual”. My suicidal thoughts used to occur only during dark episodes or surrounding bad life circumstances, however, in the past year or two, I’ve noticed that I can be feeling “good” (If you’re wondering why I keep saying “good” in quotation marks, it’s because I hardly ever genuinely feel good. I have days that are better than others, but I don’t know if I’d go as far as to say I have really “good” days) and still, if I see a bridge, or a bottle of Tylenol, or a car going faster than it should, it’s almost like a computer popup shows up in my head and says, “Excuse me, there’s something that could kill you.” And sometimes it’s a fleeting thought and other times it’s something that sticks with me for a while, but even when it sticks I still don’t feel too bad, I just have to deal with intrusive thoughts of death and being dead, which sounds awful, right?

Imagine someone you’re close to calls you up, and you have this conversation:
Them: “How are you?”
You: “Oh, yeah, I’m good, I’ve just been having intrusive but totally casual thoughts of death.”

When people think about death, especially self inflicted death, it’s often associated with darkness and sadness, so these thoughts that feel as natural as saying, “I like ketchup on my hamburgers” don’t add up, and I know when I’ve voiced these thoughts to others, I’ve gotten some interesting responses because let’s face it, casually talking about ways to kill myself in the middle of hanging out with somebody definitely makes me sound more crazy than I actually am (if that’s possible).
Anyway, we’ve reached the crux of this post, and here’s what I have to say about the matter: as I stated at the beginning of all of this, I’m not sure how “normal” it is (as one could argue that no thoughts of suicide are normal, ever) but if you’re having thoughts like this, I don’t believe you’re crazy, and you’re definitely not alone.
Some people are just made up differently, and thoughts happen. For me, these casual thoughts of suicide don’t mean anything, and even though I don’t enjoy them and I try my best to make them go away, they could be worse.
However, if you do feel like these thoughts are too frequent or if they really bother you (and definitely if they become more serious!), then I’d highly encourage you to talk to someone about them, but if you’re just thinking about them like you might think about y’know, circuses or something (what are normal thoughts even? I’m drawing a blank right now :3 All of my thoughts at the moment are related to cool bands!), then in my personal opinion, I wouldn’t worry too much. You’re okay.
I feel like we spend too much time telling people how to fix their problems, and not enough time telling them YOU’RE OKAY! YOU’RE NOT CRAZY! I STILL LOVE YOU! (And even if you WERE crazy, I’d STILL love you!).

Stay safe, my Friends! I’ll write to you tomorrow (if not sooner!)

Music – Mental Health Post #6

Hello, hello Friends! 🙂

I’m really excited about this post because I’ve been planning it for awhile now, and it’s a much lighter topic than most of the other things I’ve posted this month!

People say that laughter is the best medicine, but laughter comes in third for me.

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The Internet and My Mental Health – Mental Health Post #5

Hello again, Friends!

Today I eat a huge piece of humble pie, and I talk about something I am extremely ashamed of. I talk about some great things, too, but I’m mostly embarrassed and disgusted by my actions, and I am almost hoping this doesn’t get any views.

*This is actually May 9th’s post, I’m just running super late! I’d also like to note before I really get into this: I tried to make this post as accurate as possible, however, as I’ve previously stated, I have sponge cake for a brain and I didn’t keep great records at the time, so the order of events may be slightly off. *

The Internet can be a wonderful, or a terrible place.

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