#BellLetsTalk Day is such an important cause and last year I decided to share how my IBD journey very quickly turned into a new monster called anxiety. This year, I think it’s important to share the story of a dear friend of mine. She offers a far more insightful and inspiring story as she struggles with Bipolar Disorder. I see Brittany daily and I will openly admit that I am ignorant when it comes to her mental health. On days where I find it difficult to comprehend her perspective, I have slowly begun to recognize my frustration is not with her, but with myself. I’ve said this directly to her, but there are days where I just don’t understand. And she’s reassured me that it’s okay. It’s okay because as I challenge myself to empathize with her, she challenges herself to open up.
I’ve noticed recently that one of the blogs I follow has really turned into a series of various product endorsements. And although I can appreciate the effort in earning some money from a blog, I have lost respect for this writer, as quickly as she has lost her authenticity. I know this person personally and believe she has real, interesting content. Yet through the excessive advertisements it’s become very unclear what her intention is with this outlet.
Which lead me to reflect on my own writing. I believe I’ve stayed true to my goal in providing a glimpse into what life looks like with an ostomy. But I wonder if I’ve been as raw and authentic as possible. Have I slightly glamourized being an ostomate though positivity and pretty pictures? Or have I reflected too much on emotions rather than focusing on the logistics? In an attempt to give a full perspective I’ve been inspired to write a post about the nitty-gritty. The dirty details. The TMI. The borderline “I didn’t need to know that…” So here ya go.
Every time I begin to write this post, I close the laptop, and with a churning stomach I promise to tackle it later. I find therapy and comfort in writing and articulating my emotions yet for some reason this post, this particular post, I haven’t been able to bring myself to. I don’t know how to articulate what this new monster is, because I have yet to understand it. I have yet to get a hold on it and fully grasp it. Although my ulcerative colitis slipped through my hands, I always felt I had an understanding of what was going on. But this new little pest does not live in my gut. It lives in my head and my hands can’t reach it.
But I’m going to try and lay out a road map of what’s going on. Because, like IBD, I know others struggle with this monster too. I’m going to try and put it into words for my own comfort because every post I write brings some sort of relief in the form of connectivity between myself and readers. And if anyone has some sort of relatable tale, I welcome it with open arms. I warn you though, I have no guidelines for this post and I’m letting my fingers lead the way. I don’t know where it’s going to go so I can’t promise my best work, but I can promise you honesty and hopefully some sort of positivity in a dark cloudy mind.
Anxiety. My new monster.