Having a mental illness is a lot like spring. Our minds rain down emotions. Our illness pounds our world with angry hail and strong winds. The thunder roars in our heads and the debris of our emotional break downs spill out into the world around us. It threatens to make our loved ones and friends casualties of our anger, sadness, and confusion. We have tiny tornadoes of emotions swirling around in our minds.
These are the storms in our heads. These are the storms of our lives. We can not stop these storms but we can learn to harness their energy and use it positively. We do not have to suffer these storms alone.
Having a mental illness is a hard thing to live with, but we are not doomed. Life can get better. Life is hard and living with mental illness seems to make it even more difficult at times. It is hard to discuss how we feel. What we go through. How we handle issues that arise. We rise. Through the broken debris and crushed deflated emotions. We rise through the difficulties and fears because we have to. There is no other option but to get up and try again. Some people can not or will not accept that we can not 'just get over it' or just "be happy". Mental illness doesn't work that way. Talking about it is the hardest thing to do. Being honest is scary and difficult. We have to be open and talk about it. How can we expect the way others view mental illness to change if we stay silent? I believe that we are advocates of our own illness. We are the advocates of our own treatment. Talking about our struggles make us stronger and braver than we ever thought we could be. Whether we were born with our mental illness or it came later. Whether it is something that came about because of trauma or genetics, it really doesn't matter. We have to recognize our emotional storms and talk about them. Only then can we change public opinion and begin to heal. We need to accept that we are different but stand up for our rights as individuals. It is not ok to make fun of someone with a mental illness. It is not ok to put labels on us. It is not ok to discriminate or judge us. It is not ok to place the blame of violent people or sadistic people and turn around and say all mentally ill people are dangerous. It is not ok.
We have to be the teachers of the rest of the world. We have to teach them acceptance and understanding. We have to teach them the reality of living with mental illness. We have to stand up for ourselves and others like us. We need to reclaim our sense of self and our self esteem. We are not broken shards of china. We are people and we deserve happy lives. We need to be honest. We need to lift ourselves up, and most of all we need to be the advocates we want to represent us.. [tweet this].