I am thinking about my relationship with my mental illness issues, after a conversation this morning in which my partner said that I was gone and he was waiting for the medication to bring me back. I have been wanting to disappear, trying to sleep as much as possible, listening to books or watching tv to avoid thinking my own thoughts or feeling my own feelings. I still don’t want to be me, here, now, but I’m aware of it - I can see how it tempers my perspective and I can negotiate the relationship between my mind and the world, a little better at least.
Politically, I’m tempted to reject the notion of mental illness as a rejection of the idea that there is a perfect mind or body and anyone different is a deviation. If bodies and minds are all just equally valid points on a spectrum, then sick and well are just relative terms dictated by the circumstance, assigned to those who do or don’t fit the way they’re supposed to. Maybe there’s biology that opposes this, but I don’t know if I’m concerned with a truth that relegates people to an inescapable position within a system they didn’t create. At the same time, I think everyone deserves to feel whatever their version of good is - mine includes medicating myself to deal with a world I don’t like, rather than changing the world or unfixing my position in it.
There is just so much pain in people, in me. I don’t know which is more helpful, empowering, and ultimately useful: to act as if some people’s brains’ aren’t working quite right, or to act as if everyone’s brains’ would be just fine if they could truly be themselves and could be free to do them divorced from culture. I don’t know anything, I don’t know how to be ok and I don’t know how to help the people around me. I’m working on it, and I’m getting better, but I don’t know how to excise the scared part of me, or to teach her that she is safe and loved and strong, and she is me and sometimes she is all of me.