The Bear and the Chiuaha

Repost! Thanks Jill for recovering and sending this post back to me!

I’ve written a bit before about my moods, and the conflicting emotions I struggle with regularly. Many people who have had any interaction dealing with the mental health system are familiar with the analogy of depression being a black dog that follows someone around. I use a similar analogy when describing my suicidal thoughts and feelings.

Even when I am “healthy”, and I do use that word loosely, I still have suicidal thoughts. They are infrequent, maybe entering my mind at the periphery once or twice a week, just barely making itself known, and aside from being annoying and fleeting, are generally incapable of doing much damage. These thoughts are my black Chiuaha. Small, dark, but pretty easy to push through and punt out of the way.

When I start to get overwhelmed, when I begin to struggle, the Chiuaha gets bigger, more intrusive, and more difficult to push through. The harder the time I have coping, the bigger the dog gets. As my ability to cope goes down, the faster the dog grows.

Over the last few weeks prior to my last hospital stay, due to several factors, my thoughts got much darker, intrusive, and decidedly more lethal. This is my black bear. The bear is significantly more challenging to do deal with, and when he comes around I struggle. A lot. And the problem with the Bear being around is, I get much more impulsive. It’s running from the Bear where I have attempted suicide before. When he’s around I also can lapse back into cutting, although I am happy to say that it has been over 18 months since I have cut myself last, even with this blip in hospital.

I am in recovery. When I crash, it is no longer as far down, I am getting in front of it sooner, and bouncing back faster. Recovery does take work though. I am on the road for medical appointments a lot. I try to find time to excercises, and I do try to be wary of what I eat, altough being type 2 diabetic doesn’t help matters. I put all my coping skills to the test everyday, in order to keep the dog small, but am ever vigilant about the Bear growing again, and have plans in place to mitigate damage. It’s not always easy, but I’m still standing.

Kevin

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