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Do you ever feel like giving up? Do you ever feel like you don’t have the strength to keep going? Do you ever feel like screaming; “I didn’t sign up for this”? Do you ever feel like the world is against you? Do you ever feel like there must be more to life than the painful existence you live in?

I’ve been knocked down so many times by my ill-health, and by the world around me, that sometimes I don’t have the strength to get back up. Sometimes I (temporarily) lose the fight.

I’m not suicidal, I don’t want my life to end, I still believe my life is worth living – I’m just struggling to see the point right now. I’m struggling to survive. I’m struggling to live. I’m struggling to smile. I’m struggling to find joy and purpose in my chronic life. To put it bluntly, I just can’t be arsed with life right now.

It’s not always easy to be positive

I try my best to be positive, I’m a born optimist. But sometimes I don’t have the energy or will to look on the bright side. I’ve had to fight so hard in my life and it’s bloody exhausting. I crave an easier existence. I want to live rather than just survive. But this is the hand I’ve been dealt, and I have no choice but to play it.

I know a lot of what I’m feeling is caused by my depression, and a lot is pure exhaustion – my overwhelming need to cry is a pretty good indicator of this. And I’m sure many of you sometimes feel this way too. But it doesn’t make it any easier to cope with.

I used to believe these episodes of despair were signs of weakness, and something I had to fight through. But now I see they are part of life, and part of my personality that needs to be accepted, not denied.

I just need a break

So, what should I do? Fight these feelings of despair, beat myself up about my negativity? Berate myself for not being emotionally strong enough to deal with life?

No, the old me would have done that. The new compassionate and forgiving me can see that I am strong, I just need to take a break. The new me understands I cannot be positive all the time. The new me knows I’m doing my best, and these feelings will pass.

At this time I am reminded of my self-care and self-love promises. Number 3 & 10 seem particularly relevant:

3. For the times when I’m overwhelmed with the need to cry;

Instead of chastising myself for being over-emotional or over-sensitive, I will allow myself to cry and feel these emotions, and acknowledge these feelings are what make me a compassionate human being.

10. For the days when I feel like a failure and I’m consumed by self-loathing;

I will do whatever it takes to survive the day. I will fight to see the many positive characteristics that I possess, and give myself the love, understanding and compassion I so freely give to others.

So I will allow myself to cry. Allow myself to feel. Allow myself to be angry. Allow myself to disconnect from the world for a while. Allow myself just to ‘be’. Allow myself to accept that right now I need to be extra gentle with my bruised self.

After all I’m not superhuman, none of us are.

I know my strength will return in time. I don’t have to be strong enough to fight right now, that can wait for another day.

Today, my own words comforted me

My writing has truly helped me understand and overcome many of the challenges I’ve faced, and at times like this I’m able to read back the kind, and sometimes insightful messages I’ve written. When I write I have always imagined I’m talking to my younger self, but today I can see I’m also talking to the future me, the depressed me. Today my own words have comforted me:

“All the problems you are facing, that seem insurmountable, don’t have to be solved right now. Just breathe

I know everything seems too much to handle, but for now, all you have to do is… Just breathe.

You fight so hard everyday, it’s time to give yourself a break and rest. Just breathe.

However desperate your life feels right now, things can and will get better. Just breathe.”

If you are also feeling like the world is too much to handle right now, please know its ok to get off for a while – the world will keep spinning without you. It’s ok to disconnect, it’s ok to rest, it’s ok not to be ok. Take care x

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