Monday Blues

Today has definitely been a rough day.

I had one of the worst falls in my experience of skateboarding. I was distracted for just a split second and had leaned backwards a little too much which caused my heavy backpack to pull me backwards. As I fell on my elbow, almost all of the force was directed to it. The backpack absorbed a lot of the impact as well which made it so that only a little part of my hip was hurt as well. I was glad that my laptop didn’t break.

The good thing about all this was the fact that the two guys who were walking behind me rushed up to help – one of them was quite polite. “Are you okay, ma’am?” he’d asked as I pulled myself off the hard brick pavement. I told them that I was okay – even though the only reason I got back up so quickly was just because I didn’t want to be laughed at for falling in a high traffic area because the pain was so jarring that I actually needed some time to recover from it.

As I type this now, my right arm is complaining, while the scrapes on my arm and elbow still burn. My wrist hurt as well because the bottom part of my palm had braced myself against the ground as I fell – I should have known better than to have braced myself though.

So it felt good to have 3 different people rush up to me to make sure I was okay – the third person was a girl who had retrieved my runaway skateboard. It was nice to know that people still care and that I’m in a campus with people who really care and are conscientious of everyone else.

So physically, I’d hurt myself – the only good thing was the fact that it had happened before the last class of the day. Otherwise, I’d have had a bad time going through the day. When I got to class, I decided to wipe my arm with my left hand. As I did so, I smeared blood all over my left palm. I hadn’t realized it but my arm was pretty scraped up and the bleeding took a few minutes to stem.

I was also extremely sleepy. I fell asleep in every class I was in. It was annoying. I had also received poor grades for my Calculus test and I was very frustrated because this is my second time taking this class – I should be better at it, not getting worse! I am definitely not motivated in school at all – besides that, I also don’t have the energy or focus to finish my work. It’s like my brain’s had enough and it doesn’t want to cooperate anymore.

I feel stupid, unworthy, and lazy. I feel convinced that I am going to drop my GPA again because of how poorly I’m performing in school. Today, I beat myself up and told myself that I am not going to succeed. Today the stronger side of me was not present to convince myself otherwise so I was depressed for much of the day.

It doesn’t help that exhaustion and sleep deprivation makes it even harder to be stable emotionally.

To make things worse, my classmate had asked me if I watched a certain TV show – when I said that I haven’t, she asked if I’d watch TV. When I responded “no” to her again, her eyes grew wide as she tried to fathom how someone can survive in this world without TV’s… She then said to me, “So you don’t watch TV, you don’t do anything fun at all! Man… Your life sucks. If I were you, I don’t even know what I’d do. Aren’t you stressed? If I were you, I’d totally be stressed…”

“Yes, I am stressed. I’m stressed all the time. Haven’t you wondered why I’m always so edgy?” I said, feeling my irritation creeping up. I wanted to say, ‘No shit, Sherlock’ but bit my tongue.

I was a little hurt by the insensitive comment about how my life sucks. I didn’t think it was helpful at all for me to have heard that. Although I knew that they didn’t mean anything nasty by their comment, it was still hurtful – especially since that is my reality. Daily.

Then during the end of the last class that I had for the day, one of the classmates that I’m most close to, had asked me why I was at the LGBTQ+ center. He’s a conservative Christian.

He said, “Why were you at the LGBTQ+ center? What, are you batting for the other team now?”

I wanted to explain to him that I do indeed struggle with same sex desires and that I’ve become more and more cognizant of my feelings and attractions. Still, his question caught me by surprise – I went with my gut instinct and go-to knee-jerk reaction. I lied.

I told him that I just had a quick question that I needed to ask the Director. He didn’t seem to buy it but he dropped the subject. His question though made me think. It made me think about the uncertainty that I still feel over my sexual orientation. It also made me still feel guilty and unworthy – it was the usual religious uncertainty that I’ve been grappling with since I was young.

He told me that he doesn’t believe that people are born gay but rather our brains get used to the idea of being one thing or another – that  homosexuality is a choice. I then explained to him that I struggle with my attraction to women. He was surprised that I would tell him that because I seemed like a conservative Christian like he is.

I explained to him all the struggles I had to deal with and all the pain and struggles that the LGBTQ+ community has had to deal with. I told  him that no one chooses a life like this. Especially not when we live in a conservative state like Indiana where you could still legally lose your job if you were in the LGBTQ+ spectrum.

It was an interesting conversation. He didn’t end up being swayed by my arguments but at least, I was able to stand up for myself and disagree with his opinion. I also pointed out the fact that today was World Mental Health Day. I told him that the way Christians (some, not all) have approached homosexuality is also the same as how they approach mental illnesses. That is to say, they don’t. I was told by someone that I wasn’t praying enough or that I didn’t have enough faith back when I first revealed to them that I suffer from mental illnesses.

It was a triggering conversation for me. I felt good to know that everyone is allowed to have an opinion and that they’re not silenced for expressing it but it was also bad because I thought about my salvation and my faith issues again.

The only positive thing that had happened to me today was the fact that my college had organized a Mental Health Awareness Day event and they had dozens of vendors from organizations like The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), Mental Health America (MHA), and American Society for Prevention of Suicide (ASFPS). I spoke to a lot of people at that event and made contacts. I told them that I was a Peer Educator and that I’m part of the group that creates the programs for mental health related topics. I excitedly shared my passion for mental health advocacy with the volunteers. I was told by all the different organizations that they do want to collaborate with us and that they would be happy to have me be a part of their organizations. I had a great time just hearing about all the different ventures and resources that were available for people. I was also inspired to come up with a bunch of ideas of what the mental health team could do next semester. Going to the event also really just affirmed to me that I am really passionate and excited about the topic of mental health. It fired me up again to be a great Peer Educator!

Note: I was falling asleep while writing this and may have written gibberish or nonsensical sentences. If I did, I do apologize. It’s been a long day.

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10 thoughts on “Monday Blues

  1. This was all today? You pack a lot into a single day! I am sorry about the skateboard fall and, well, all your struggles. And I’m still concerned about how tired you are. I can’t gift you more hours of sleep, unfortunately. And I fear I’ll sound like a nag if once again I encourage you to let something go so you have some space for rest and (dare I say it?) relaxation. It’s really okay, though, not to do everything all at the same time.

    I wanted to tell you too, that you are brave to speak openly about such a difficult internal conflict, especially to someone you know will not necessarily “approve” or provide you with support. I admire that so much!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Q, it’s always so great to hear from you! And yeah. Mondays and Wednesdays are nuts. I have class and other things all packed into these two days.

      I’m not sure what it is about the exhaustion. I don’t know if it’s just also a byproduct of the depression compounded by the fact that I’m not sleeping enough. You’re not a nag, Q! Far from it. I so appreciate your concern! It’s very motherly and warm and it makes me feel really good to know that someone is looking out for me.

      I’ve been trying to figure out what it is that I can give up but in coming up blank. The reason is because I have to have 12 credit hours in order to get financial aid, but on top of that, because of bad my financial situation is right now, I have no choice but to work at the Math Assistance Center (which comes with extra homework and class obligations where I have to sit in on classes twice a week and finish homework) and at the restaurant. I’ve contacted a debt relief company though so maybe I can figure something out for the present time (people tell me not to use this service but I think at the moment, my situation is bad enough to warrant just thinking about the here and now despite me knowing that these debt consolidation companies will try to make as much money off you as possible!).

      Thank you for thinking that I was brave to speak about the conflict. I was hesitant to do that initially. But then, he’s a nice guy and we’re becoming more friendly with each other so I felt that I didn’t want to pretend like I agreed with him (like I’ve always done with people in the past because I was afraid to lose the friendship) and then later have him find out that I didn’t agree with him at all… Speaking of brave… It’s National Coming Out Day today and I think I’m goijg to publically declare on Facebook that I’m not straight. I don’t know yet really exactly what I am – I mean, I’m not exactly bi, but I’m not exactly gay either. Hahaha…

      Anyway, I hope things are well on your end. I haven’t had a chance to read your posts yet recently.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You are SO BRAVE. You are loving yourself by coming out, loving who you are even when you are not sure what to call it right now. I feel so proud to know you.

        Lots of hugs, and congratulations!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. The wonderful thing about “coming out,” whether it’s about your sexuality or your true opinion or your mental health struggles, you find out who cares about you as YOU rather than as their idea of you. I’m glad though not surprised that people respond to you positively!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Yeah! You’re right! It’s so validating and refreshing and now I know that at least 40 people in my life care about me as I am. It’s a relief because my stomach was all knotted up when I posted my coming out post!

        Like

      4. Yeah! Definitely! What a vulnerable position to be in. And thank you so much, Q! I consider you one of the most supportive person I’ve ever met and one of my greatest friends in that regard! And I’m glad I’m getting no flak from this as I was expecting.

        Like

  2. Wow, what a day. I am hoping your body feels okay after that fall and I’m glad that so many people came to help you.

    I agree with Q, I don’t want to sound like a broken record but maybe dropping something is the right choice. School isn’t a race – I remember feeling awful for finishing my degree a semester late and turns out no employer cared except one applauded me for prioritizing balance. Said that was a good sign of self awareness.

    Good for you for having that conversation. It can be so difficult to be open about mental health or sexual orientation or anything along those lines when you know the person you are talking to may not be receptive – that’s an admirable thing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, it was quite a day… Being told my life sucks really hit me more than I’d anticipated. It’s weird….

      As for my body, well… I didn’t get a good sleep because my right arm where I’d fallen on hurts a lot. I hate that deep muscle soreness that is often associated with overuse (it feels like I’ve gone to the gym and only worked out my right arm). Stretching the wrist and massaging the elbow and upper arm helped but it woke me up to do that… I don’t want to whine about it so much because I feel like it was my own fault for falling and therefore I have no room for sympathy.

      Thank you for your concern. Between the two of you, I feel like I have two people who deeply care for me and it feels so good to know that and to feel that warm fuzzy feeling in my chest whenever I read your comments. It’s one of the things that keeps me going. But as for the school situation… In order to have financial aid, I need to do 12 credit hours minimum which is a bummer of course… And Computer Science is such a stupid hard program that it doesn’t matter that I’m only doing 2 classes, you know – the course load still feels like it’s 6 classes. Haha… The good thing is, there is one class that is going to end soon. This particular class only runs for 10 weeks so I’ll be glad when that’s over, then I’ll only have 3 classes left to do. Granted, they’re the 3 hardest but at least, it’s one less class…

      Yeah, I also need to remind myself that it’s okay for me to just take 12 credit hours. I constantly feel like I am failure for not doing more. I also have to remind myself that I’m 30. Not as youthful and energetic as I used to be.

      As I mentioned to Q, I feel like I can’t be a pretender anymore. I think I’ve done that way too much all my life which has led to my disgruntled, bitter, and angry feelings that I bottle up. I was surprised at my own courage to speak up though. The guy I talked to was surprised when I disagreed with him. When I started talking about mental health, he also opened up and told me about his own family’s struggles with mental illnesses. I was glad to have that conversation, now in retrospect. I hope that I’ve at least put it in his mind that hey, not everything is someone’s choice. I don’t choose to be miserable everyday – at least not consciously…

      Anyway, thanks for your comment. It is so helpful to just know that there are people who care for me deeply and that I have that connection.

      Liked by 1 person

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