Lately I’ve not been up to writing much so I’ve started to doodle, admittedly my artisitc talent is a tad lacking, but here they are, mood doodles illustrating my mental health:

 

The Mood Swing

Mood swing doodle, consisting of a swing on a tree in various positions; up & happy mood, in the middle , not moving 'apathy' , swinging very high 'very excited mood', swing stalled and person fallen off 'very depressed mood' , an empty space where the swing should be 'WTF?' mood

How My Brain handles a Supposedly Simple Task

Diagram showing 'MY brain'  with a very wiggly line, in loops and dead ends going from A- B and then back again. A  'normal' brain showing a line going from A to B straightforwardly with only a small dip for 'a cup of tea' The Forest of Endless Distraction

A doodle showing a small stick figure in a forrest, various scenes show being distracted by a pine cone, an interestingly shaped clod of dirt, noisy trees and stream, the whirpool of wandering thoughts and sign posts to somweher but you forget where labelled 'whatevs' , 'stuff' and 'blah'

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Somedays I am so sensitive to everything, everything is noisier, smellier, more colourful, and if it’s a bad day 100000x more annoying. I don’t know if this sensory overload or whatever it is it’s a symptom of depression or what.

Today is one of those days. I am distracted to the point of snapping, every little noise everyone makes is driving me to distraction. Even the sound of my fingers on the keyboard is rubbing me up the wrong way. My mum is sweeping the floor and it sounds like fingers down a blackboard. I can’t concentrate, I can’t do any work everything is so fucking NOISY and DISTRACTING. On days like this I need to get out. I just can’t cope. I just can’t do stuff. I need to shove headphones on and walk off the stress, fidget it out or curl up.

Too Noisy!

It really is quite utterly ridiculous to be almost driven to tears and yelling at people because everyone’s noisy. It’s diva ish ‘how dare you make noise when I need to work!’. But omg it’s so hard. I can’t shut it out, I just can’t. You can never tell when it’s going to hit. Sometimes it just comes over you, you just have to ride it out and try not to snap at people for breathing too loudly (some people really do breathe ridiculously loudly). The birds outside sound like they have bloody megaphones.

This is probably why I have a very low tolerance of people who talk in cinemas, apart from the fact it’s just bloody rude if you don’t STFU as soon as the film starts. I once went to the cinema with a guy who kept using his phone, not to talk but silently to text n stuff, just the light next to me was driving me mad. I just find it so hard, if not impossible to tune this stuff out sometimes, like I have a filter that’s broken and everything is just massive white noise swarming in all at once , deafening. Like a massive bee. My brain even feels weird, sort of tingly and wriggly. Like little brainy worms.

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Plath’s classic description of smothering yourself in your own stewed air under a bell jar still remains one of my favourite descriptions of depression and what it feels like.

It’s not just the stifling qualities but the sense of detachment that I find so accurate. Within the bell jar you are at once part of the world; you can see it and hear it yet you are not fully in it, you are separated by a thin glass wall, the sounds are muffled and you are always looking through something at the world.

I would also describe it as like being behind a sheet of cling-film; the world is so close yet there’s this thin film that clings to you, that won’t let you fully engage, your senses are dulled and you are still separated. Able to see the world, albeit in a plasticy distorted haze, you can touch but only through a sweaty film barrier.

The imagery of suffocation in both similes (or metaphors? I’m a bit unsure which is most apt) is intensely accurate, the feeling that this thing is draining oxygen and life from you with every breath. The stifling atmosphere of being unable to breathe properly and the distorted focus on your own mortality that this brings. It’s like that uncomfortable muggy feeling of a still, breezeless heat wave, it’s too hot to do much , everything seems such a chore, you are aware of the failings of your body and how uncomfortable all your senses are and you can’t sleep as the heat is too much so you just lie there, stewing in this invisible oppressive force.

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