This blog has been a long time coming. Nothing wrong with it being a long time coming… except that there’s something I’m committed to that I’m not doing. I’m committed to contributing to anyone – including myself – facing mental health issues. And that’s the problem. I say it in my head, I say to people around me, and then I don’t do it. And in that moment I lose a piece of me.
I think it was Gandhi (but it might be the Dalai Lama?!) who said that happiness comes when your thoughts, your words and your actions are aligned. For me, that’s certainly when I experience inner peace. Mostly I don’t experience this because I think something… then I might say it to myself (or if I’m feeling brave, I’ll say it out loud to another human being, or the cat), and then I don’t do it. I stop and find a reason why not, or give up, or convince myself it doesn’t matter.
And then my thoughts start turning on me: ‘what on earth did you say that for you idiot! You’re never going to do that! See, you said it and you’ve already given up; you always do this, you’re rubbish!’ And then who I am for myself is someone who doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter = I don’t matter. And I’m right. I’ve proven it.
Sometimes if I’m feeling really brave (inspired, clear, calm, motivated, happy – insert other positive feelings that I take as a sign its safe to act) then I’ll do the thing I said I would. I’ll think a thought about going to the gym, I’ll tell myself (or the cat) I’m going to the gym, and then I’ll get in the car and go. And boy do I feel good after that!! I’m peaceful and calm and happy and proud (and aching!) A little piece of me is restored.
Building the jigsaw
At the moment I’m restoring the pieces one by one. I’ve written this and the writer piece is restored; the contributor to mental health issues is restored. I go to the gym and the healthy piece of me is restored. I speak my mind and the confident piece of me is restored. Piece by piece; day-by-day, I’m building me. And so what if a few pieces have rough edges that don’t quite fit?! Or if some bits are down the back of the sofa… I’ll find them. And, even if I don’t, I’m still me. Perfectly imperfect, well-loved, and much happier when I live outside of the box.