Not all people with a mental illness are violent, and not all people who are violent have a mental illness.
Today marks a year since my brother died because of a heroin overdose.
Addiction is not a fun disease. It wants you dead. And if you play around with the disease of addiction long enough, it will eventually get you.
I’m reminded today of my own struggles with addiction and that I can never drink alcohol safely again during my lifetime. If I were to, I would probably end up dead myself.
Today serves as a reminder to me just how serious drug and alcohol addiction can be to those who have it and struggle with it daily.
I just came back from one of my 30 minute walks. I started them a couple of weeks ago to hopefully uplift my mood and fight back against some of the negative effects and symptoms of schizoaffective disorder.
Having this disorder is a major pain in the ass… or ‘PITA’ as the kids today would say. With this disorder you constantly feel drained, down, and tired. It is not just a disorder of seeing and hearing things… or even the bipolar aspect of it. You constantly feel drained and mentally down. Because of this, I am walking mainly to improve my mood, which has not been great lately. I am just getting very tired constantly struggling with this mental disorder.
Everything, everything I do concerning this disorder seems to be a chore and requires work and effort. Long gone are the times when I could do multiple things effortlessly, or have boundless pockets of energy. While some days are better then others, I struggle everyday to keep a positive mental attitude. This is a lifetime progressive mental illness with no cure… there are treatments for it, mainly medication and talk therapy, which I am involved in – along with medication that I take.
Another tool that I have to battle this disease is to not drink alcohol. It is my first, best option to fight against schizoaffective disorder’s effects. Day in, day out, it is a miracle that I am not drinking. For, if I were to start drinking, it would be to admit defeat against this disorder.
Even though this disorder is very draining on me emotionally and physically, I still have a lot of work that I have to do to ensure my continued wellness. I need to work on gaining more friendships and strengthening my relationships with people. I need to continue to be strong against a mental disease that wants me living in the street, homeless, or worse.
It is amazing what I have been able to accomplish even though I have schizoaffective disorder, alcoholism, and anxiety disorders.
My formula is simple… just keep moving forward everyday, do not drink, and take my medication. As long as I continue that mix of what I feel are positive things, I should be alright. I have also added walking to my wellness regimen now, so that should hopefully help my mental and physical state.
I am still working on my research proposal. It has been very difficult to get through this process. I am first and foremost, an organic chemist. However, due to life’s unexpected circumstances, I am currently back in school learning pharmacology/biology. It has not been the best and easiest mix for me. I am learning, just probably not as fast as I should be, nor do I have a good time retaining material these days.
Hopefully, when my rewrite is submitted on February 23rd, I will finally pass this thing. Only time will tell. It feels, though, up until this point, that I have been ‘faking it until I make it’. And now with this 15+ page research proposal due, it is crunch time. Time to put up or shut-up.
There is a possibility that despite my efforts, I might fail this qualifier towards my second Ph.D. degree. If that does happen, I need to remind myself that I have been through worse. I have been homeless, jobless, and entirely desperate living on the street. I have come a long way in the past eight years. I choose not to lose any of what I have gained since I have gotten better.
No matter what happens, this time will be different. I will be sober, on medication, and have my mental faculties functioning. I do hope I pass, but this process has not been easy. I am not a biologist in the strictest sense of the word… and by no means would I characterize myself as being strong in pharmacology. I am an organic chemist traveling in, and through, a world having nothing to do with chemistry in the strictest sense. Only time will tell whether or not I will be able to pass this current hurdle in front of me.
Recently, I have been battling a deteriorating mental state.
I am getting more and more tired and I feel my life is becoming more of a continually repeating routine.
So, effective this Saturday, and on Saturdays only for the moment, I will be going to the gym to walk the treadmill for at least a couple of miles. It is the only time during the course of the week when I have actual time, and energy to spare, to be able to do this.
The most dangerous thing someone in recovery can feel is a feeling of stagnation. And right now, at least for the past few months, I have felt that I have been stagnating. Everything concerning me, my job, and issues surrounding my life. Stagnation can lead to boredom, which can lead to an addicts relapse. And this addict is determined not to relapse.
I have been adamant concerning my recovery about breaking the cycle. And despite going back to school and getting my career back on track… I’ve fallen into a repetitive cycle that I have not been able to break. I feel going to the gym is my first best option to get out of my head and hopefully clear my thoughts. I am sure it will also boost my energy and overall sense of well-being.
So, that’s it. I have had enough. Schizoaffective disorder will not win this battle. The trap of falling back into active addiction will not win this battle. Not as long as I have the energy and mental conditioning to fight them.