Still Mentally Well on World Mental Health Day
As today is World Mental Health Day, I thought I should do my bit and blog about it; as I sat down to write, however, my mind went blank. The pain, agony and despair that were my constant companions are now gone, and as I sat there tapping my stylus on my iPad hoping for inspiration, I had a little eureka moment. I realised that my former companions provided a lot of the motivation for my writing.
I suspect that when I wrote about the therapies that helped me get well, I should have included 'Writing'. The mental anguish that I endured had to be purged; I hadn't disclosed the sorry state of my mind when it was at its worst for fear of stigmatisation. I just wasn't strong enough and so writing was an incredibly useful tool, as it provided the catharsis I needed.
I wrote through the pain and out the other end and although I didn't set out to disguise my suffering, it never fully manifested in my writing. As irony would have it, I am an eternal optimist; no matter how much I was suffering, I still had hope and that very hope allowed me to always find a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. I ended all my pain filled musings with optimism. I had made it through, and however bruised and battered my spirit may have felt, it was not broken, and so my endings were always uplifting. They had to be. I had hope and I certainly didn't want anyone reading my words to have anything less.
Nowadays, whenever I think I may end up heading down the road of reactivity, pity and self-judgement, I think of what Suzuki Roshi said when he was dying of cancer and I remember what a beautiful gift my life really is.
"The moment I'm dying, if I suffer that is all right, you know; that is suffering Buddha. No confusion in it." - Shunryu Suzuki
And so today, here I sit, filled with hope, filled with happiness, and feeling utterly honoured and humbled to still be here, pain free and wishing everyone on earth good mental health.