lost my grip

it was like holding my breath for 2.5 months, on tiptoes, fearing that had i exhaled i’ll lose grip. and turning blue, i had to let go. take another breath, that i may continue to survive, go about life, and pretend that all’s well. true to my fears, i exhaled, and slumped in exhaustion. i lost grip, the hold on my life. my inhibitions went up in smoke.

i did it again. i fell flat. and i have no bearings as to what tripped me. it is extremely unnerving, to not know what the trigger is. i remain dulled, unable to feel deeply- or even slightly- the emotions that once made me feel more human. more alive. i was asked again and again, why. none of the doctors in the hospital could comprehend why i would be so mutilating.

coming out of the brief hospital stay, i remain terribly dulled. my psychiatrist was painfully honest- i was going to be better off staying in the psychiatric ward at this present point of time. it’s always about my safety. of course i didn’t agree to it. we talked at length, as i tried to inhale as deeply as i can, secretly wishing that by doing so i’d have everything in hand again. but every breath was a half-hearted attempt unconsciously.

i don’t know how long this mess will remain.


7 thoughts on “lost my grip

  1. It can take a long time to get better, and longer still to really give up coping mechanisms that work even if they are dangerous. My burns have never been so severe, but I do relate. Have patience with yourself. Treat yourself tenderly, with the care you would give to a friend dealing with the same things. Wishing you the best, Q.

  2. hi Steph, i came across your blog quite recently… i am sorry that things have been so difficult for you, and that you are in such a bad place right now. sending virtual good vibes your way; i hope that in the midst of this terrible darkness you’ll have a few rays of sunshine every day… even if they are just tiny and barely significant.

    like you, i have severe chronic refractory mood disorders, and panic and anxiety; i have also struggled with self-harm since my mid-teens (i am now in my early 30s). i have borderline personality traits which kind of just border on being a disorder (for a while i used to argue with my psychiatrist about the official, on-paper diagnosis). a few years after i started treatment for my mental illnesses, i was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome; i have several gastro-related conditons; i have also had chronic daily headache since my early to mid-teens. i don’t have any ED but i do have a disordered relationship with food and eating. and like you, my relationship with my parents is just… i can’t even… there are no words to really describe or explain it, especially not briefly. in fact, i didn’t tell them about any of my medical conditions for like 6 or 7 years at least? (i can’t remember all the details of everything any more…)

    anyway, this is about you, not about me, but i’m sharing just to let you know that i do empathise to a fair degree because of some similar conditions that i struggle with. i can’t do much to help, and i don’t know if it is of any consolation that you are not alone… i can definitely understand the feeling / thought that “so what if i’m not the only one, that doesn’t make a tangible difference to me or anyone else, or relieve the suffering we are going through??” and i wish that there i could do more to help you, do let me know if there is anything i can do… but for now the best i know how to do is just to let you know that i hear you; i empathise with you; i think you are a wonderful and strong young woman (even though i know you don’t see any of that at all!); and if there is anything that i can do to help you, i am willing to be here for you to the best of my abilities. feel free to email me or msg me on facebook if you ever wish to connect. 🙂

    finally, i just want you to know that for you to have completed nursing school and worked full time as a registered nurse for i think you mentioned about 8 years? (and i know that nursing is an extremely tough and demanding job!) and to have been such a passionate, disciplined dancer, and to now pursue further studies — all of this is just TOTALLY AMAZING, in light of the conditions with which you need to contend every single day. i can’t even do a fraction of that!!! so i just want you to know that although you probably don’t feel or believe it, you are an incredible and awesome person… i believe in you!

    and i hope things get better for you soon… from a few of your posts, it seems that your doctors and therapist are competent and supportive, and for that i am happy for you. 🙂 supportive healthcare professionals have really played a big part in my treatment, especially since, like you, i don’t really have parental support.

    take care of yourself, Steph… you are a truly beautiful person, i can see it. xx

    • p.s.
      1) sorry for the super long comment — i thought of sending it in an email but couldn’t find your email address…
      2) haha… i totally forgot i had a wordpress account until it prompted me to login to post my comment!

    • Hi T

      Thank you so much for your lovely message. It’s nice to know that someone understands. I’m sorry to hear about your struggles. In some ways, we are quite similar I guess. It’s difficult to be chronically ill, physically and mentally. It feeds into each other- physical pain can worsen the mood, depressed moods causes fatigue and sometimes trigger flares. Still holding on. But for what, I don’t know.

      Thank you for reaching out. I deeply appreciate it. Please know that you can talk to me as well. You’re lovely.


      • hi Steph,

        it is so good to hear back from you. 🙂 you have such a beautiful heart and so much strength to be able to still extend me such love and kindness amidst the terrible pain i know you are in.

        i’m still holding out too — but i also don’t know what for. often, the only 2 reasons i don’t just check out of this shitty reality are 1) that i haven’t settled my affairs which includes destroying my journals and all other evidence i don’t want anyone to be able to ever find, and 2) my cats. i don’t want to leave them alone but i wonder if i might soon be unable to give them the care and quality of life that they deserve, so if i’m going to say goodbye i at least need to have proper plans in store for them so they’ll still have homes when i am gone.

        again, if you would like to connect, i would be honoured to just be here for you. even just to rant or whatever. (you can see my email address right?) sometimes i feel like almost everyone around me is sick of me and my nonsense… and the 2 friends who best support me have struggled with depression as well. i think there are some things and some times that i can talk about only with travellers on the same journey. like i always tell them — i’m sorry that they are in the same boat as me, but for what it’s worth, at least i am in your good company on this shitty ride.

        anyway, i have a bad habit of rambling on with long comments, ha ha… so yep, please try to take care of yourself, although i know you don’t feel like you deserve it at all. and another thing, i’d be beyond honoured if you ever feel like you would like to reach out to me when you are in crisis. you are lovely as well, and i’m more than happy to be here for you 24/7. let me know… i can give you my phone number. i don’t think i mentioned this earlier but i am actually also in singapore! (if i recall correctly from one or two of your posts?) so, i dunno if that would help. and to be honest, i think that you would be a giant help to me too. there are a lot of things that i know i can learn from you; i am also encouraged by your strength and kindness. (i’m also interested in medical sociology so am curious to know about your insights and opinions on our healthcare system which you have briefly alluded to before.)

        ok, i am really going to stop rambling now lol. sorry again for the essay. BIG HUGS to you, and i hope you get some good rest this weekend. 🙂

        T xx

      • Hi T

        I’m sorry i always take awhile to reply u. I have to be in the ‘mood’ to be able to in my blog, or reply properly. I am otherwise always struggling. It’s ok to ramble! I have a habit of doing that too. It’s great to know you’re in good ol’ Singapore. do you actually know me in person? I understand when you say that you feel that the people around you seem to be “sick of you”. This is the very reason i put up a great facade in front of my family and friends. To them i might seem whiny, firstly since young with arthritis, then seemingly attention-seeking with depression, bulimia and BPD. They seem to be always inserting “again?” in their words. And because i want to avoid hearing people around me telling me things i don’t want to hear, i get estranged from many of them, or just drift away from them.

        It’s hard to have support i find. With people who also struggle with mental illnesses, i find i either get triggered, or it becomes “competitive”. So it’s damned either way. With those who are perfectly healthy, no matter their empathy, they will never understand what it’s like. It’s just unfathomable.

        I might have written quite abit, if not formally, very informally as a patient navigating the healthcare system medically or psychiatric. I can share some of the tags with you so can check them out when you’re free. But it’s a whole load of it, and you might be better off looking at my categories of “Healthcare System”, and “as a patient”.

        I can’t see your email actually, that’s why i’m typing through here too. You are lovely, in case you haven’t realised 😉 I hope you had a good weekend. Now to trudge on with the week!


  3. hey, just want to say that i read your msg already and going to try to respond tonight or tmrw! sorry i also often take ages to reply! >< sending love and hugs for now! xo


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