Trigger Warning: Some of the themes relating to suicide in this article may be triggering

I’ve sat here for a little over an hour now, sipping tea, scrolling through the trending mental health threads on Twitter, occasionally looking up in a pensive manner to the ceiling with a somewhat pouty lower lip / chin combo and ultimately, being continuously distracted with all the nonsense my head is making up on this fine Thursday.

Rational and irrational April are in the throes of wrestling to see who’s going to dominate the majority of my head-space today. I’m exhausted.

Do you know what we’re gonna do? We’re gonna ride the mist together…

Coping with the 'bad days'

‘Mist’! That’s what I call my ‘bad days’ … I can see many of you have different names for your bad days from my social media scrolling, and it’s actually brought a smile to my face. I found calling mine ‘mist’ was an easier way to quantify how I was feeling from day to day.

There are times though when the mist is so dense that I lose sight of everything, hardly making any sense and it can result in memory loss once I’ve come out the other side. That said, I do associate my mist with my favourite colour: purple. Makes it less scary for me if I can see and feel it in a colour I adore.

Reaching rock bottom

I’ve never really opened up about 15-year-old April being hospitalised after attempting to take her own life, and I shan’t be doing so now, largely because I’m not ready to and even more largely, I’m not in the right head-space to do so today.

What I will share is this… And this is something I don’t yell about nor do I hide but there is rarely a morning where I don’t wake up wishing I hadn’t. Of course, there are levels of mist density which play a part… but ultimately the realisation of “here we go again” exasperates me and wears me out before I’ve even put two feet on the ground.

So, if it’s too much for me, why don’t I do something about it? It’s pretty simple… I have people here that need me, I have too much stuff I want to do in this world, and I have a battle in my head I refuse to lose.

Tips for managing the really difficult days

There are three things I want you to take away from this article:

  • If you got out of bed today, this is a huge achievement. Do. Not. Belittle. It.
  • Regardless of whether or not you live with a mental health condition check in with someone today, however that may be. Don’t presume someone is okay because of their Instagram Story, don’t leave them on two blue ticks on WhatsApp and don’t think it can wait until tomorrow.
  • Ride your mist. That might mean sitting in an armchair and holding on for dear life, or it might mean going for a walk with a friend or it might even mean staying in bed for today, and that’s okay. Ride it. Why? Because you have people here that need you, you have too much stuff that you want to do in this world, and you have a battle in your head that you refuse to lose.

Those three things are from my experiences as both someone with lived experience of bipolar and as someone who has been there for a loved one who is affected by the condition.

You're not alone

Today, my mental health, my mist is crippling, it is exhausting, and it is embarrassing me.

I am, however, out of bed – and for that I’m celebrating. 

As always, lots of love.

April x

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