"Do it badly. At least you're doing it." – Mike Andrews
WHO THE HECK IS JESS?
Well I'm still not quite sure yet. Welcome to my daily adventure of figuring out who I am, what I like, and what I want to do with my life. I turned 20, and didn't have a clue what I was doing. My life hit a big low; my mental health decreased, my weight increased, and my entire outlook on life was turned upside down. I found myself scrolling the internet for hours. I was comparing myself and my life to photos posted on social media platforms. Distracting myself from cleaning my house with hours of Jane the Virgin. Who am I kidding, I still do that... BUT I am sharing my story with the world so I can find out who the heck Jess is, because I lost track of her a few years back.
I hate using you in a sentence. I literally hate using the word “depression”, but I don’t know else how to explain the feelings and thoughts you send my way. I hate complaining about how I feel, and how sad I am. How unhappy I am.
I LITERALLY ANNOY MYSELF CONSTANTLY. WHY AM I SO SAD. JUST BE HAPPY. IT USED TO BE SO EASY. IT WASN’T EVEN SOMETHING I HAD TO THINK ABOUT. NOW IT’S LITERALLY THE HARDEST THING EVER. I’M JUST SO SAD. SO FUCKING SAD. EVERYDAY. EVERY SECOND. And when I’m not?? NUMB. I can’t feel a GOD DAMN THING.
Some moments you don’t even let me know whether or not I love my boyfriend. I don’t even know if I’m really sad. The tears just pour out while I stare at the wall.
Some moments you hit me with emotions, and they just come flooding in so hecking strong out of absolutely no where, and I can’t do anything but cry.
You tell me, stronger now than ever, that I am a problem. To everyone. You’re convincing me that the world is better without me. That there is comfort in unexistence. That people would be happier if I wasn’t around.
Some moments you get the best of me, and I believe you. I allow myself to fall deep into your dark realities.
You convince me that telling others about what I’m feeling is just asking for attention, or that people will judge me. You tell me that no one wants to hear it and that I have to hide it. That I should just disappear secretly and stop causing problems.
I can’t accept it though. I will not let you take me. I will not stop fighting. I will tell on you. I will tell everyone. I love life. I love love. I love me. And I am going to conquer you. Even though it’s getting harder and harder, I will not fail.
The girl who won’t give up.
PS Come on man, you’re cramping my independent, badass style I’m trying to radiate. Piss off, will ya?
I’m so sorry that it’s been so long. It’s been a long few months.
Today I’m going to rant. I saw this post on Facebook this morning:
Being waitlisted because you’re not hearing voices. Or because your reoccurring thoughts of suicide haven’t quite turned into downright plans. I was waitlisted for 6 months, (no seriously, from May-November), because the doctor deemed me “not bad enough”. Because I didn’t have actual plans to take my own life, or because my lack of schizophrenia was too normal.
Waiting and waiting and feeling stupid for even asking. You see those commercials that say “don’t wait, ask for help”. Well what about when you do and you’re dismissed? Being told and treated as “it could be worse”? That makes it worse.
Over the course of the 6 months that I had been waiting, I have watched myself fall further and further from happiness. While my thoughts of suicide may not be plans, they are getting awfully close. My panic and anxiety are 24/7, I can barely get through classes without having to mentally check out and calm down. My OCD is so heightened, that half of my nights now just walking around my house, sleepless, and unintentionally formulating new rituals to try and satisfy my lack of control.
Now I validate 1000% that there are people that desperately need support more than others. I am so happy that they are getting help, and the message I’m trying to relay is not that I am in any way more important than another. I am so thankful to live in a country where mental health is a priority and there are resources, a large percentage of them even being free.
I am simply trying to illustrate that if my mental health had been taken seriously when I originally built up the courage to ask for help, I more than likely, would not have slipped as far as I have. You leave the doctor’s office feeling like an idiot for even trying because you feel unwell, but you are dismissed. There seems to be nothing physically wrong with you, so you’re fine, right?
The demand is still far surpassing the supply of Mental health resources. The majority of doctors seem to lack strategies for treating patients with mental illness. This is simply just my opinion.
I really hate being sick. The last few days have sucked! I’ve been sick and felt super useless, which is super hard for me to accept. I stand up to get something done, and then I feel dizzy. Being sick is the worst, especially when you have so much to do! I hate asking for help.
I’ve had to cancel appointments. I even had to call into work yesterday which is something I never do, EVER. It was defeating at first, because I felt like I was letting everyone down. I feel like I’m annoying my boyfriend from being so useless.
What use is thinking that way going to do? Okay, I’m trying really hard to flip this mindset into something more positive. For example, being sick does suck, but it’s the universe telling you to slow down. Take a breather, and take some time for you. It’s okay to ask for help, others feel good when they can do something for someone else.
But, I don’t have time to sit around and do nothing. I have so much to do!
Your well being is most important, and clearly at this level of responsibility, you cannot prioritize yourself so you need to work on that. You can’t help others until you help yourself first. You need to fuel your gas tank before you can get to where you need to go.
So yesterday I took it easy, relaxed, and just sent some emails. I did do meal prep, but I took it slow and paced myself with Sims 4 breaks in between. Sometimes you just need to let your body drive, rather than your mind. Your body will get you through, you just need to give it time and fuel.
So today, I’m feeling a little bit better, and all I want to do is kick it into overdrive again and get everything done, but instead I’m pacing myself, studying for 1 hour, and then taking a break, repeat. Taking medicine, drinking water. Relaxing.
It probably sounds really silly to some of you, but these things are such huge accomplishments for me. Learning how to me there for myself is something I’m really proud of. Everyone deserves to be cared for, even you, by you.
Take care of yourself today because you owe it to yourself. ♥️
Hi it’s me with some more bungled thoughts. Sorry for the really long break; it’s been a really busy few weeks!!
Update: I feel like I’m running on a hamster wheel from the moment I wake up in the morning, until the moment I close my eyes at night. The last few weeks, adjusting to full time school and work, have been really overwhelming. (I’m just covering extra shifts at work right now because we are short staffed).
I am definitely discovering boundaries and limits which is really foreign territory for me. I always went on as a yes man, always saying yes and getting it done, until I’d crash and burn. I’m realizing that it’s one of my greatest weaknesses.
I’m FINALLY learning that it’s okay to say NO. It’s okay to skip out on something, to take time for you, and to prioritize your own mental health. It’s a little harder when it’s work and school, but the idea still stands.
To say I’m stressed at the moment is an understatement, but I lack the ability to self-sooth it, so I’m just running around in circles, (hence the hamster wheel metaphor). I feel myself falling into what I call “a bad luck spiral”, where it’s just constant bad things happening to you because they’re happening to you and you focus on them, so more bad things happen.
My bad luck spiral this week includes: making silly mistakes at work, having my car battery die, and then continue to die, and not having time to get a new battery so many many jump starts, having to cancel appointments, my referral for seeing a psychologist was cancelled because they were given the wrong phone number so I wasn’t answering their calls, forgetting things at home and being late, the list goes on. I know that these things are happening due to a lack of time and too many commitments. It’s my natural habitat, what can I say.
I’m trying to juggle everything, and be perfect for everyone, and I’m turn, not putting my best work out there. I’m making mistakes at work, being late for events, and falling behind in school. My anxiety is through the roof.
The good news is that I’ve put in a request for less hours ASAP because I’m mega struggling. I’m also talking to loved ones about what I’m going through which is really helping. I’m getting another referral to talk to someone. I’m trying so hard to solidify my boundaries and limits for future reference.
We will persevere. We will conquer. We will accomplish. ♥️
I didn’t know what I was getting myself into when I said yes to a movie date all those years ago, but I know for sure that it was the right decision. I often feel like I don’t deserve you, or that you’re too good for me, but I’m trying daily to remember that the universe doesn’t make mistakes. My anxiety tells me you’re going to leave, that it’s all too good to be true, and that you’re getting tired of me. You remind me that my anxiety tells me a lot of things, but it doesn’t make it true. I remind myself that you were sent to me for a reason, and you are still around for a reason.
You are far from perfect to a normal standard, but you are perfect for me. You grind my gears, but you help me become a better person every day. You take my broken pieces, and help me glue them back together.
I appreciate your time, patience, words, humour, kindness, love, effort, and commitment. Whatever I did to deserve you is something I thank the universe for everyday. Regardless of what happens I will always have someone in my corner of the ring to call me on my shit but hold me until it’s over, and that I wish for ever person out there. Everyone deserves to find the love that you have for me.
I’m gunna stop you right there, pal. Illness, mental health struggles, emotions, pain; they don’t always have a look. Sometimes the happiest looking people are the ones who need a hug the most.
It’s important to remember that everyone is fighting a battle in their own mind, in their own way, at their own pace. Just because someone is smiling, it does not mean they are happy. Just because someone is wearing makeup, it does not mean that they are feeling confident.
This photo represents happy me. It’s a selfie I would probably post on social media. The key here is that it represents my happiness. Looks can be deceiving.
The following photo is a compilation of some thoughts that race through my head on the average day. My depression and anxiety often get the best of me, but putting these thoughts out there is helping me improve.
So here’s my #makeupandasmile post. I was so thankful when @lifeoflittlethings reached out to me about this campaign because these are conversations that NEED to happen more often. People need to know that they aren’t alone. Let’s start the conversation. Let’s see your #makeupandasmile post. Let’s hear your story.
I’m sorry. I’m still learning to love you. Every day I’m trying, now. I’ve spent so many years hating you when I was thin and when I was larger. I don’t want to hate you anymore, because you’ve never done me wrong. When you carried me through the best moments of my life, I still hated you. You did nothing but be there for me. You digest my favourite foods, allow me to feel so many things, let me see my surroundings. I’ve spent so much time trying to hide you from the world.
That ends today. You are nothing to be ashamed of. You are not something that needs to be hidden from the world. I don’t hate you anymore, at least I’m trying not to. I’m grateful for you. I’m trying every day to be grateful for you. You are always there when I need you to take me where I need to go. You are always there to calm me of my anxiety. I’m trying to love you body, and I will continue to try my best to love you each and everyday. All of you.
Why is society’s standard to not be body positive? It’s like if you’re confident about your body you’re a narcissist or something. What is so wrong with showing ourselves some love?!
They tell you on the airplane to secure your mask before helping another. You take time off work if you’re sick. You go to work and/or school every day to better yourself.
So why is ~simply~ being positive about your body so hard? Why are we influenced and encouraged to be insecure, (not intentionally of course)?
It’s taken years of bullshit and vastly deteriorating mental health to get to this point. I’m still struggling everyday. The most important things is that we don’t give up. I’m hitting a point in life where there’s no way out but self love. The universe has slapped me in the face because I’ve neglected myself for so long, and I must grow.
We’re all on this together. Check yourself out. Drink water. Move your body. Fuel your body. Feed your soul. Buy yourself a cupcake. Eat the cupcake. Repeat.
I remember when I was younger, my mom would always tell me: “Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words will never hurt me”.
She told me to repeat it in my head over and over again. But the words do hurt. They really, hecking hurt. They encourage my mind to run through the miles and miles of negative thoughts and self doubt I harbour in my head.
A lot of things hurt. Some days just being awake hurts. Mental health is so hard to understand sometimes because not enough people are talking about it. There still remains stigma.
I encourage you to speak up, and speak out. Even if you just share your feelings, or what you deal with, it’s something. There is nothing more comforting than finding that you aren’t alone in how you feel.
A lot of things hurt, but there is comfort out there. There are others out there that feel the way you do. There are people who care about you. There is more to life than how you feel.
I try and camouflage how big
I am on social media so no
one else knows the shameful
truth: I’ve gained weight.
This past month has been really, really shitty; I won’t put it lightly. I hold myself to these ridiculous standards like: Summer months are your good months, why are you depressed? You’re supposed to be happy. You’re supposed to be skinny. You’re supposed to be organized. It’s been over 2 years, why can’t you let it go?
Today I’m going to dive into my body cycle over the past 8 years, and the experiences that accompanied it.
A little back story here: 2 1/2 years ago I experienced what to me was a traumatic experience, which shocked me to my core. I am still recovering from it. I’ve realized that until recently, I have been neglecting myself because of these standards I’ve placed on myself.
Because of this experience I developed panic disorder and very acute anxiety, which eventually lead to sleeping pills, antidepressants, and a whole lot of weight gain. Unfortunately, this all made it worse. I was feeling really good in November, and actually decided to come off of my medications, which was a HUGE victory for me.
I thought I was ready, but I see now that I wasn’t. “Just because you have high days, it doesn’t mean you are over your anxiety. It is always going to be there! You will just get better at dealing with it,” was something I was told back when I first started counselling. It was scary because I thought she was supposed to be able to fix me, and take it away!
Since then, I’ve come a long way, but I still have an even longer way to go.
Because of this weight gain, I’m experiencing the body that I’ve always convinced myself I already had. I’ve struggled with body image since back in grade 8 when I was severely tormented for my body, even though I wasn’t even big at all. Girls would throw toxic words st me like confetti, like “tank,” etc. I can assure you I was never a weaponized army vehicle, let alone big enough to be referred to as a tank. I was scared to go to school, and I felt like I didn’t belong anywhere.
I developed an eating disorder in grade 9, in which I would bend over in my bathroom mirror every morning, and if I saw any rolls, I wouldn’t eat that day. I would only nibble enough so my mom wouldn’t get suspicious. I’d throw up the remainder. I was so thin, and so unhealthy. The worst part of all of this? I didn’t even know it. I had been convinced that I was fat and that I was a problem.
Luckily, I overcame this. I couldn’t actually tell you why, whether it was my soul revamping my path, my love for food overcoming my excessive need to be thin, or some other miracle; I overcame it.
Young minds are so influential, and so vulnerable. I actually didn’t comprehend a lot of this damage until recently when I started councilling. It bites me in the ass to this day. Even after I overcame my disorder, and I was SO SMALL, I was convinced I was huge.
Fast forward 8 years, and I now see myself as that same girl in highschool, except this time, I am a tank. Or at least that’s what I’ve convinced myself because I actually am “fat” now.
This is a new body for me and I’m trying to navigate my way through life in it. I try and camouflage how big I am on social media so no one else knows the shameful truth: I’ve gained weight. I’ll use poses and clothes. I’m in denial because I don’t see myself as that big, but then I see photos, and I realize how big I am. I have a tendency to lash out. It’s not right, it’s no one else’s fault.
You need to surround yourself with people who don’t treat your insecurities as inconvenient because they are what make you human. They are no one else’s problem but your own, but you also need support.
I decided to start taking care of myself, because no one else is going to. It is my responsibility to be there for me. I can’t wait to share my new journey that you guys soon!! Until now, I’m still holding myself accountable to a spot where I can share.
There’s my rollercoaster for the day. Some much needed back story for you guys to understand some of my past. This comparison was done to show myself something: what is similar in all of these pictures? I am unhappy!! I’ve been unhappy at any size. So it’s time for me to accept the skin I’m in and be happy REGARDLESS. I’m starting a happiness journey and I can’t wait to share!
Reminder: it’s OKAY to be skinny.
It’s OKAY to be fat. It’s OKAY
to be ANYTHING YOU WANT TO BE.
But it’s IMPORTANT to make sure
you’re happy, too.
This is My Body rollercoaster so far. It’s not perfect, but it’s what’s brought me to this moment in my life, so I’m grateful. I am so, so thankful for this community and everyone I’ve met so far. Thank you, thank you. ♥️