2022 July 2022 mental health month update

Hi, July. Be gentle.

Let’s Try This Again

A few weeks ago, I hit a really hard place. The world had become more than my mental was letting me manage. One week, I saw men and women who looked like me killed while simply purchasing food for their families. The next week, I saw what should have been a regular countdown towards the last day of school marred in violence and 21 souls were gone. Babies. Gone. Children who should have come home to tell their parents about their awards and their hopes for summer plans were instead being identified by green sneakers and hair barrettes taken from blood matted hair. I hugged my children so tight when I came home that evening. I was reminded that I did the same thing ten years earlier when my oldest son was then in elementary school. He was the same age as the babies killed in Newtown, CT. Now, it was a repeat.

Frankly, it’s hell when you’re pouring from a cup that’s been empty for a long time.

I tried to manage. The news was turned off. I limited social media to client work only. But then, I became fully immersed in a new work position and gained several new clients for my social media management company. While ordinarily that would have been great news, I started getting overwhelmed. My 8-hour-workdays were becoming 10-12+ (and that was just my ‘regular’ job). I was always on the computer and when I wasn’t I was cranky and miserable. At a time where I should have made sure my self-care squad was solid, I stopped appointments with my therapist because I was too busy to make the appointments.

My anti-anxiety meds were no longer working as well as they had in the past, and then my husband told me that I didn’t seem happy, that I was withdrawn from him and the kids, and I was literally separating myself from them when I did come home. He wasn’t wrong. I didn’t like it any more than he did, but I just couldn’t break through.

What’s crazy though is I was still encouraging others. People would call with their problems, ask my advice, ask prayers…and I would do whatever I could each and every time. The self-results were damaging though. I couldn’t eat, sleep, or pray for myself. There was nothing left and I couldn’t get past it. I couldn’t even let my voice utter groans that could be interpreted by the Holy Spirit on my behalf (though trust–God knows). And everyday, I was still pouring out whatever was needed for everyone else. That sucked. Frankly, it’s hell pouring from an empty cup that’s been empty for a while. And honestly, I still haven’t crossed the threshold into complete peace.

Emotionally…Drained?

We received wonderful news recently. While it made me smile, I admit that was pretty much all it did. I wasn’t over the moon nor was I devastated. I was just–meh. And that’s how I have walked through the beginning of this month. I do what I can to nourish the physical. While I don’t really have an interest in eating, I do because I need the energy. I could sleep all day if the opportunity allowed itself, but with the family obligations the opportunity doesn’t allow itself very often.

Still, there are bright spots. Somehow, despite letting S. know that I was in no mood to host anyone for the July 4th holiday, between 30-50 people were in our home enjoying life, food, and fellowship. I’d be lying if I said I was excited about the prep work after being so specific in my desire for peace and quiet, but I can’t deny the great energy, the fun, and drama-free environment had me teary-eyed in a good way. Everyone had such a great time and said it over and over again, and that made me feel a lot like the old me who loves to make others smile. The vibe continued as I visited with family on the actual 4th and enjoyed fireworks and family time there as well. Still…tired.

photo of fireworks
Photo by Anna-Louise on Pexels.com

Easing Back into It…

As I said, I’m slowly trying to get it together. July is my birthday month. I don’t have anything big planned and would absolutely be fine with crab cakes and beignets from the local restaurant, or a no kidding hotel hideaway weekend. But, no matter what it brings, I plan to be grateful to be allowed to see it. So many people aren’t getting the chance to live their lives anymore. Death is grabbing everyone. It’s a true blessing to make it through the day when all you are doing is going to parades, buying groceries, going to work, and going to school. But we’ll see how we feel as we approach.

Here’s praying great things in July and the recognition that in this life, though we will have trouble, we rejoice anyway, for Jesus has overcome the world.

Have a great month, guys,

-Kinta

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