Time to get a little bit serious on here. It should come as no surprise to anyone that I suffer with Mental Health, especially if you’ve been around long enough to have read my post on living with cyclothymia. It’s such a difficult topic to talk about, mental health isn’t just one thing. It’s different for every single person and my experience isn’t going to be exactly like anyone else’s. Everyone does have one thing in common though, and those are good days, bad days and the in-between days.
There are such things as ‘good days’ and ‘bad days’ – everyone knows that. You can have a good day and feel like all your troubles have been washed away and that tomorrow will be brighter. You can also experience a bad day. This type of day includes negativity, struggling to do basic things like shower, eat, talk, dress or leave your bed. The bad days are granted for everyone. But there are also days that are torn between the two that exist. I call these the ‘in-between days’, almost like a grey area in mental health days. It’s hard to describe exactly what an in-between day feels like, but to put it briefly, it’s not bad, and it’s not exactly fantastic. It’s just there. You’re just there, in the middle of both positive thoughts and hope, and negativity and your demons trying to bring you down. It’s like your mind can’t decide which side it’s going to listen to that day. You’re stuck in this limbo-like state which is exhausting, and more than anything else, it’s confusing.
Everyone has these types days. Things could be better, and they could also be worse on those days. I suppose the best way to describe these days would be to imagine yourself going numb on feelings. Your mind is so exhausted from switching to negativity to positivity and back to negativity again, it just stops feeling. Your mind sits back and you have a bit of freedom to experience life without the worry of crashing after your good day high.
Although a mini break from feeling everything all at once may sound fantastic, it’s really not. The lack of negativity starts the thoughts of ‘when will it come back? Will it be in five minutes? An hour? When?’ and that spoils your mood, causing you anxiety and can, in some cases, cause panic attacks which obviously make you feel even worse than you did to start off with. But then, out of nowhere something happens and you forget about the anxiety that’s rippling through your belly. You feel better than you did, and the events make the day almost seem like a good day, but not quite. It’s not quite a good day, it’s almost there, but there’s something that keeps you from feeling happy about it all. So you keep going and the cycle continues throughout the day. Once you feel like it’s acceptable to go to bed and turn in for the night, you practically feel every muscle in your body relax as soon as you snuggle down underneath your duvet, and close your eyes for some much needed rest. Maybe tomorrow would be clearer?
Mental health has never been, and will never be, just black and white. There are so many aspects of mental health that a lot of people forget. It’s not as simple as good and bad days. It’s not as simple as happy or sad. There are so many different thoughts and feelings that you can feel in one day, there has to be more than just two sides of it all, more than just two colours, black and white. Having said all of this, everyone experiences good, bad and in-between days differently. An in-between day to me might be a bad day for someone else. A good day for one person, could be a bad day for another. It depends on what they consider a good day or a bad one, and what falls in-between.
There’s no point in writing an essay on the in-between days, because sometimes, they doesn’t seem real. For example, this week, I drove a car for the very first time in two years after losing three friends in a car crash. I was happy and excited when I actually looked back and realised I faced one of my biggest fears. But at the time I was terrified. I worked myself up into a right old messy mental state and everything went sliding out of my control. The thought of getting behind a wheel again, well, it nearly caused me to pass out. I can’t tell you how I felt that day. I can just remember feeling absolutely thrilled with the fact I faced a huge fear of mine, but also sick enough to pass out at the thought of doing it. These in-between days catch you when your feelings get too much, you can’t really process what’s going on inside your own mind, and you just kind of go with what life throws at you. What exactly did I experience that day? Was it good? Was it bad? It was somewhat between the two. I hope that example made sense, but hopefully even if it didn’t, you get where I’m going with this.
I guess in the grand scheme of things, what I’m trying to say is; it’s completely fine to not have a good day, and it’s equally fine (and absolutely fantastic) not to face a bad day. You’re just stuck in the middle, and you’ll get out of that mind-fog at some point. I always found it difficult to put into words when explaining to family or friends that I was having an in-between day, but now I think they just know when I’m having one. You don’t have to face any of this alone. If you find watching Disney films, eating ice cream, going to the gym, painting, swimming or, whatever floats your boat that you enjoy and makes you feel like you’re having a good day, you can always do that with a friend of a family member. You never know, it might turn an in-between or a bad day into one of the best days ever.
I hope you guys didn’t mind this piece of seriousness coming from me. It’s been playing on my mind recently, and I just feel as if I had to get this out there. I hope you understand and if any of you can relate, that’s amazing. Definitely drop me a message to let me know if you can relate to anything I’ve mentioned above. And until next time, stay hopeful and have an awfully big adventure for me.