How to stop a mental breakdown

Step one: you don’t. The ebb and flow of emotions sometimes just need to happen. I wish I knew how to fix it. I wish I could look at myself in the mirror and just go: “Hey look, you’ve got your life together!”

Unfortunately, I don’t. In fact, I don’t even have today together. I’m looking at being broke for the next two weeks, my love life is not what I want, I live in a shitty basement in a house full of boys. I may or may not have mice in my room, and I’m currently writing with snot pouring out of my nose (awesome visual, I know) while I quietly sob hysterically.

In a way I know it has to look comical from the outside. Here is a semi-successful twenty-something year old who is complaining about stuff that truly does not matter. I have it easy. I know I do.

It’s hard to look past my current moment and get past the woe-is-me part. I want someone to hug me. I want my parents to help me out. Heck, I want my dog to become potty trained, but I also know that he’s a product of my own doing.

So what do I do? I write. I write so I can gain some semblance of sanity and refocus my energy into something else. I think mental breakdowns are your body’s way of saying, “Deal with the stuff in the box you’ve shoved to the back of your brain!!!”

It doesn’t help when you just mentally catalogue issues away to deal with later. If you’re like me, you just end up snot-bubbling (a phrase so eloquently used by my father) while watching the recap of a Grey’s Anatomy episode.

It sometimes helps to talk aloud and name five positive things in your life. It can help, though candidly it doesn’t always work for me.

Step two: Once you’ve calmed down enough to at least stop crying, focus on the next thing you have to do for the day. You can’t focus on all your problems at once, sometimes you just have to go one step at a time..

I don’t know if it’s like this for everyone. I know that this helps me to breathe. Writing helps me to remember myself. It helps me to stop crying. At least as long as my fingers keep moving.

Living life is hard. Being a twenty-something year old trying to balance all aspects of life can be really hard. It’s okay… I think. I think it’s okay to cry. I think it’s okay to be upset that your parents won’t help. I think it’s okay to feel utterly alone even when you know that you’ve got a lot of people willing to be there for you.

Try to breathe and stay calm for the next ten seconds. According to the wise words of Kimmy Schmidt, “You can do anything for ten seconds.”

I don’t even know if all of this makes sense, but at least I know I can breathe for the next ten seconds…

One thousand one… one thousand two….

You Just Can’t Make This Up…

I met a man that I fell in love with. A man that against all of my walls and defenses, I fell head over heels for. But then he died. No, I don’t mean I found out that he cheated and that he was dead to me, I mean he passed away 2 hours after my last text message to him. I wish that was the end. I wish that it was a tragic point that I was able to mourn the man I loved. But it didn’t happen that way…

It has been three months since he died. I can still remember the day vividly. I had just switched jobs and he sent me a text while he was at work. He was the type of man to wake me up every morning with a good morning text telling me how much he loved me and missed me. He worked as a cell tower service technician and had messaged me as he was going up the tower. I texted him two hours after that only to find out that two minutes prior to the text he fell. I found it odd that day that he never responded. I waited and called, but he never answered. I didn’t find out until two days later that he had passed away.

I was devastated. I lost it. I couldn’t believe that the man I had started to talk about marriage with was gone. I didn’t get to say goodbye. The worst part was that we hadn’t yet met each other’s families, so they didn’t know about me. I had to reach out via Facebook.

I messaged his mother and she allowed me to go to the funeral… Some days I wish I would have never gone. Then I wouldn’t have found out what I did. When I got there, I noticed a girl my age sitting not too far from the front. She was crying. A picture of the two of them sat next to the casket. At the time I didn’t think anything of it. He was a gorgeous man that women tended to gravitate towards, so I just assumed she was another one of his good friends.

She got up to speak and told the crowd about how she met him and how she loved him. I sat there in silence, crying in part because the man I loved was gone, and crying because suddenly I knew who she was.

Later that day I messaged her on Facebook only to find out that he had been dating both of us at the same time. He had told us he wanted to marry both of us and he had even met her family. It was a whole different aspect of heartbreak. I still don’t know how I feel about all of it.

How do you handle finding out that the man you thought you were going to share your life with was saying the same exact things to another woman? To add a little icing to the cake, I found out from a mutual friend that eight other women had come forward claiming to have been dating him.

It made me sick to my stomach.

Grief was hard enough without adding anger into it. However, I learned something. I learned that I was stronger than I thought I was. I learned that death could not crumple the woman I was.

I went to his grave later and told him what I thought about his lies. I had to smile. The man I thought to be slightly naive and a little uneducated was actually the best liar I had ever met.

He fooled me, but I cannot say I hate him for what he did. It’d be pointless, haha… He’s dead.

The funny thing is, I still miss him sometimes. If he were alive I would have broken up with him and never spoke to him again, but there is something about the permanence of death that gets to me. I had never dealt with death until he died.

I dealt with death in a scientific way. I studied it. I studied what happened to bodies when they die and when they’re buried. I studied a little deeper into my faith and took a serious look at the existence of Heaven and Hell. Still can’t say I’m sold on the idea, but I don’t like the idea that the man I knew is just completely gone.

It seems a waste of life and personality for the essence of a person to simply vanish after death.

 

I rant now, partly to vent and partly to let out the grief that I have a hard time putting into vocal words. It’s hard to understand grief and loss and love when everything is gone so suddenly.

When to Let Go

Relationships are hard. Knowing when to let go is even harder. How exactly do you know when it’s time to let something go and move on? Well, I’ve seen the signs in my relationship, but short of being hit in the head with literal signs I feel like I’ve been ignoring all the metaphorical ones.

For me, I have the tendency to hold on to something even when it’s probably no longer healthy to stick around. Why? It’s because I hate giving up on a relationship. It’s not that I’m looking for Mr. Right at this point in my life. Shoot, I don’t even know what I want to be when I grow up and I’m in my twenties! It’s because I saw failed relationships growing up and I desperately want to be the type of person to work through problems so that way when I am to the point where I’m ready to be married I can make it last.

Relationships, however, seem to be my weak spot whether it’s being romantically involved with someone, a friendship, or a relationship with a family member. In reflecting over the past year and a half, I’ve noticed that there were certainly signs that I should have listened to, but in the midst of my depression I didn’t really take a stand when I should have. It’s not to say that my past relationship was a particularly terrible one (though if you ask my best friend or my dad I’m sure they’d have something to say), I just allowed him to think that I was okay with certain undesirable behaviors when I should have stood up for myself.

I think in relationships there are a few key signs into realizing when it’s time to move on:

  1. There’s distrust
    • For me, I probably should have broken it off with him the minute I stopped trusting him. I didn’t want to though. I felt like I was being paranoid and that I had nothing to worry about when in reality I was just ignoring his behaviors and his growing secrecy.
  2. Your friends stopping liking your significant other
    • About halfway through my relationship, the guy I was with owned up to doing some things that really broke my heart. Me being a dummy, however, stayed with him and forgave him. My friends didn’t see it as something to forgive. I didn’t want to listen to their thoughts on him, mostly because I didn’t want to admit that I was staying in something bad. At the time I felt like they just didn’t understand the dynamics of our relationship and that it wasn’t worth explaining.
  3. You’re no longer happy with him
    • It took me a ridiculously long time to accept it, but towards the end I just wasn’t happy. I didn’t trust him. I began to hate myself for staying with him, but also truly believed that what I felt for him was love and I wanted to give the type of love that I read about in church. The only time we really got along was when we were physically intimate, but otherwise we argued all the time and I could see his lack of trust towards me, which infuriated me. Why didn’t he trust me? It’s not like I had done anything to him other than get the courage to stand up for myself every once in a while. I couldn’t brag about him to friends anymore, because the times he tried to be a good guy felt like they were an afterthought after months and months of dealing with his mood swings and verbal abuse.

 

It wasn’t until I had a very dear friend be a perfect gentleman towards me and compliment me on my goofiness, that I realized I deserved better. I had been told that for months, but it took me a long time to truly believe it. If a friend that I had known for years, who saw me grow up during my awkward phase, could find me beautiful and funny because of my quirkiness rather than in spite of all of those things, then why couldn’t the guy I’d been dating?

It was certainly a valuable lesson that I feel will help me in future relationships. Ladies, if you’ve ever been in my shoes, it’s important to remember this: You should never date a guy with the mindset that he’s out of your league. He should be proud to date you and flaunt it. If you ever feel like you’re not worthy of him and he’s made you feel that way, run! It’s something I have to constantly remind myself. I am worth more than a man who only found me worth caring for when it was convenient for him.

I am nerdy, curvy, goofy, and damn proud of it!!

I look forward to the future to focus on myself and become independent and happy for me. I know that the next man I date will appreciate it and I can stay in it for as long as it’s healthy. Growing up is hard. This whole “adult relationship” thing is hard too, but I feel like I learned a lot and I’m ready to pick myself up and see what’s in store for me.

 

Apology notes and goats

Well I knew the start up of the semester would be busy… but I didn’t know it’d be this busy. It’s actually pretty exhilarating though. I started a new position as a writer for a newspaper and since training day it’s been “life in the fast lane” for me! However, the downside to this new job is the lack of social life I have now. 

I’ll admit it. I am definitely a social butterfly. I love to be around people and get to know people’s stories, so getting off of work and knowing everyone is already busy kind of bums me out. I don’t mind too much though. I get to catch up on episodes of Dexter.

Yes, my name is Alexis and I am addicted to Dexter. I have a problem… Haha! 

I just wanted to let all my readers know that I haven’t abandoned my blog… It’ll just be a bit before I can post frequently.

Oh the consequences of life!

 

On a random note, I do have a story to tell you. I got to go to a farm the other day. Like a farm with chickens and goats and cows.. It was awesome!!!

It was actually my aunt and uncle’s farm, but they call it a glorified petting zoo. It was pretty fantastic. They had a baby goat and I taught it to butt my knuckles whenever I yelled, “fist bump!”

The little guy is supposed to be meat for dinner eventually though. I’m sure he’d be tasty, but a fist bumping goat is just too cute. There’s my liberal act for the year. 

Save the goats!!! 

However, the cows they have make the best steaks I’ve ever tasted in my life. Just throwing that out there..

I got to pick eggs for the first time. I was honestly afraid of the chickens. Urban girls and chickens don’t mix.. but I did it! It was so much fun and now I have farm fresh eggs sitting in my fridge. 

I have to say my aunt and uncle’s farm is very admirable. They grow their own vegetables, herbs, and have their own meat. The landscape at their place is gorgeous and I love it. It’s one of those places to go and unwind. If I ever have the time one day, I’d totally get a farm with goats, but probably not chickens… Just saying… Those little things freak me out.

Why shaving sucks

I hate shaving. I really do. Yes, I will admit I love when my legs are smooth, but the process of getting nicely shaved legs is a real pain. However, prior to a date it’s a necessary part of the routine. Why is that? When in society did the style of smooth legs become a norm? I mean God forbid we let men know that our legs – and our lady parts – grow hair.

The first thing I despise about shaving, is the amount of time it takes to get everything. You can’t go quickly, oh no, you have to take your time or else you end up looking like you’ve been attacked by vicious squirrels on your legs. Am I the only one who can easily take 20-30 minutes shaving?

This brings me to another reason why I hate shaving: the cuts. I cannot tell you the amount of times I have nicked my knees or my ankles and wondered if I was going to bleed out from that little cut. It’s like the bleeding won’t stop! And of course, once it’s healed, I have a talent for nicking myself in the exact same spot.

As if that isn’t enough, there’s always the dreaded missed spot. I don’t care how long I take and how OCD I become while shaving, I have that one little area that becomes magically immune to the stupid razor. As I move my hand over my leg to inspect a job well done, there’s always a damn patch or strip just staring at me…usually around the parts I try not to nick or on my thighs.

The biggest pet peeve of mine when it comes to shaving, is the body contortion I resort to in order to get everything. One leg propped up on a ledge, one hand pushing my inner thigh away, the other hand gently shaving to make sure I don’t slice any important lady parts off….yeah that’s a pain. I feel like there ought to be a shaving yoga class based on the moves I do while shaving in the shower.

Overall, shaving just plain sucks. I could rant for days over why I hate it, but in the end I do it anyways. Whether it be for dates or in order to avoid looking like Chewbacca while wearing shorts, I am a slave to the razor….

But not today. Today as I write I feel the prickliness of my leg hair poking my skin as I cross my legs. Today I rebel…until I shower later…ugh.

What’re your thoughts on shaving?