My (un)Beautiful Mind

**I wrote this entry 3 months ago in mid-March. Many areas I’ve made progress since, which I’m very happy about…but I reading this this morning I realize how real the struggles are, and that they don’t just “go away”.**
This is likely going to be a little bit more depressing a post than what I’d like, and for that I’m going to apologize right off the start. The main reason is because this last 4-6 weeks has been really tough, and it’s been progressively getting tougher. In the middle there you throw in a stretch of 5 days where I was without meds… Which most of you know is a recipe for disaster. It’s literally been close to the toughest stretch I’ve had yet. The good news is I’ve toughed it out so far, even though it took a lengthy battle of the mind while locked in the bathroom… Just me, a knife, and the longing to end things then and there. But here I am… So Yay (I guess).

I met my psychiatrist, who first gave me shit for going of my meds…(um, yeah. Believe me, it wasn’t planned). So what was my reward? Increased meds… 40mg Prozac, 300mg Lamotrigine, 750mg Lithium, 250mg Quetiapine. That is my new daily life partner. But the positive… Without my meds I was freaking-out!! So… I know they’re doing something. Right?!?!
But it got me to thinking… What the heck is wrong with me? I mean, in my head… Why do I need so much assistance just to feel normal? And I don’t even feel normal. It’s hard. Therapy is great. I’m actually learning so much. I’m learning pretty crazy and cool things about myself. About my eff’d up mind, and how it works. It’s amazingly insightful! But the problem is it’s equally discouraging as it is encouraging. I’m a pretty smart guy. I’d even go as far as to say I’m very smart… But I am biased… You know, being me and all. I honestly can remember “hiding” for as long as I can remember. I didn’t know or understand why I felt the way I did. I knew it wasn’t normal (normal being the way everyone else felt/thought) but there’s no way I could tell you why that was. All I knew from a very young age… “I have to bottle this up… This isn’t right.” So that’s what I did.
I’m now 34 years old, and my guess is that close to 25 years of that have been “played out”, “acted”. And you know something? I was really, really good at it. I never realized just how much I did…it all just became so natural. But now looking back there’s so many things over the course of my life that now make sense. I think anyone who knows me likely sees the same thing. It’s not something I’m proud of, but I’d be lying if I said there weren’t times where I’ve thought “this sucks… I want to just go back to my charade. I can do that.” And I could. But, I know that I was becoming less and less in control. My mind was taking over. As smart as I am, I wasn’t able to maintain control. My mind outsmarted me, and it did it very very well. And it did it very very regularly. My mind was no longer me… It was controlling me, and it was trying to kill me.

A beautiful mind? Not a chance… My mind is not beautiful.

My mind is not beautiful.
it is a growing heap of discarded
thoughts, and half written sentences.
it is branches, fallen far from the tree,
or wet leaves which collect on the
corner of the flowerbeds. It is the color
of the sky as the dawn is coming; and
the smell of gasoline rising from a fire.
it is a rose petal, long lost forgotten, pressed
between a book. It is the last second
of consciousness before drifting to sleep,
and the first breath of air you take after parting
the lips of your love. My mind is a growing
frenzy, a wasteland of abandoned roads.
but my mind is not beautiful.

(Julie Martinez)

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