'But I don’t want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
'Oh, you can’t help that,' said the Cat. 'We’re all mad here. I’m mad. You’re mad.' 'How do you know I’m mad?' said Alice.
'You must be,” said the Cat. 'or you wouldn’t have come here.
I don't have time to write alot, but I figured now was as good a time as any. Over the past few years, I have had a myriad of health issues, but none compared to a painful and dark cloak of anxiety and depression that has, at times, ruled my days.
Because my mother died by suicide, and because I have children and am committed to modeling different choices to them, I have tried and continue to try to demystify and manage my own illness.
This blog is for anyone who suffers from mental illness, or has a family member or loved one who suffers. If you want to learn more about the blog itself, go here:
If you are interested in sharing your own stories, or if you have questions or topic concerns - please leave a comment, and I will get back to you. As with all efforts to demystify and destigmatize illness, the more voices that speak up, the more likely that the world will take notice.
A little more about me. I am an artist but I won't focus on that now, that is a topic for another blog (http://Chelise.typepad.com).
My mental illness began to manifest itself when I was about 15 years old. I attempted suicide at the ages of 18, and again at 19.
I have hospitalized for my illness (as of today) a total of 10 times.
My mother committed suicide 7 years ago. She was 54.
More about my diagnosis can be found here:
What is Generalized Anxiety Disorder?
Generalized Anxiety Disorder, GAD, is an anxiety disorder characterized by chronic anxiety, exaggerated worry and tension, even when there is little or nothing to provoke it. More about GAD »
Signs & Symptoms
People with generalized anxiety disorder can't seem to shake their concerns. Their worries are accompanied by physical symptoms, especially fatigue, headaches, muscle tension, muscle aches, difficulty swallowing, trembling, twitching, irritability, sweating, and hot flashes. More about GAD »
Major Depressive Episode
Depression, which affects people of all ages, income, race, and cultures, is a disturbance of mood and is characterized by a loss of interest or pleasure in normal everyday activities. People who are depressed may feel "down in the dumps" for weeks, months, or even years at a time.
in the same 2 weeks, the patient has had 5 or more of the following symptoms, which are a definite change from usual functioning. Either depressed mood or decreased interest or pleasure must be one of the five:
Mood. For most of nearly every day, the patient reports depressed mood or appears depressed to others.
Interests. For most of nearly every day, interest or pleasure is markedly decreased in nearly all activities (noted by the patient or by others).
Eating and weight. Although not dieting, there is a marked loss or gain of weight (such as five percent in one month) or appetite is markedly decreased or increased nearly every day.
Sleep. Nearly every day the patient sleeps excessively or not enough.
Motor activity. Nearly every day others can see that the patient's activity is agitated or retarded.
Fatigue. Nearly every day there is fatigue or loss of energy.
Self-worth. Nearly every day the patient feels worthless or inappropriately guilty. These feelings are not just about being sick; they may be delusional.
Concentration. Noted by the patient or by others, nearly every day the patient is indecisive or has trouble thinking or concentrating.
Death. The patient has had repeated thoughts about death (other than the fear of dying), suicide (with or without a plan) or has made a suicide attempt.
And I'll leave it at that, for right now.
Questions or concerns, please - feel free to leave a response to this post.
In my next post, I'll try to shed a little more light on my personal journey.
As of this moment, I am hospitalized, but I anticipate going home to be with my family - either tonight, or tomorrow.