Mayday, Mayday

Five Day Forecast 1991 by Lorna Simpson born 1960
Five Day Forecast by Lorna Simpson. 1991

Despite being a blog focused on psychology, art and mental health, I haven’t been doing much posting recently about psychology, art or mental health. Though this could be attributed to a number of different things, the most notable reason is that I’m currently in an odd place internally. Truthfully, I’m unsure of what’s really going on with me, but my mind feels all over the place. I’m having strange dreams and most mornings I wake up with anxiety I can’t pinpoint the root of. And although I have my days where I feel more capable of things, others leave me feeling totally disconnected and saddened by everything around me – most critically of myself.

Self-loathing is something I’ve struggled with for much of my life, but I feel as though it has reached new levels over the past year. At the moment I’m struggling quite a bit to leave my home, despite encouragement and love from my wonderful friends. But I’m also eating a lot healthier (read: actual fruits and vegetables) so that’s something at least.

Nonetheless, in my absence from actual writing and posting a bunch of songs that make me sad instead, I have made it to quite a few interesting events, exhibitions and workshops. In the coming weeks, I plan to share my thoughts and experience of one of these – an exhibition I attended last year at the Wellcome Collection. So, if you’re in the mood for me rambling about consciousness and disorders of memory, I’ll see you in due time.

Something I have learned with regards to this blog and my ability to share, is that I am unable to promise consistency. But what I can promise are my thoughts and emotions – good, bad and all those in between – as and when I feel able to do so. I’d like to think that can be enough for now.

(PS. I got a distinction in one of the core modules for my course! This is significant because I’ve spent most of the academic year feeling like an imposter at the institution I attend. So how I managed that while still being moderately depressed I don’t think I’ll ever know. But more on that another time.)

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Blind Contour Drawing by Lucas Garcia. 2013

It’s been so long since my last post. There isn’t much reason for this other than to say I’ve been very tired lately; I’ve been tired and my head hurts. An interesting observation of this tiredness however, is in seeing just how much the world continues to turn even when I no longer feel a part of it. Every morning, every evening. Every sleepless night, every weary day – the world outside my window continues to buzz and spin regardless.

I have been trying, or rather failing, to put into words what I believe my current mental state to be. Despite reflecting on the various thoughts and emotions in my mind, nothing seems to sit quite right with me. Initially I couldn’t decide if this was a good or a bad thing. However, my increasingly troubled dreams and unsettled mood suggest to me it’s likely the latter.

That being said, on a more positive note I’ve been listening to a lot of Beach House recently – a band I first discovered, oddly enough, in the changing rooms of a clothing store. I’ve had one of their songs on repeat for the last day or so, although quite a few have already made their way on to my everyday playlist. I feel as though their songs have been getting me through the days this past month, which I’m very thankful for at least.

Anyway – extremely late I know, but happy 2017. Let’s continue to exist.

And when they ask us
Are we happy inside
We’re a rollercoaster
And yeah, we’re a fire in the night

What can you say
All your yeahs
It’s your life
Do you right
Give them love
And give them away

_______________

Decembre

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Camel Thorn Trees, Nambia. Photograph by Frans Lanting. 2011

It feels as though every time I try to have a voice – to not feel so heavy with all this sadness and this blame – I just get pushed further down the hole. And I’m so tired.

I’m trying to promise the people in my life that I will keep myself safe. That I will hold on until the years end. But I’m so exhausted. I feel like I could sleep for a thousand years.

Winter Is Here

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Cosmic Sandals II by Vesna Kittelson. 2005

Well, hello.

It’s been so long since I’ve written an actual post that it feels almost strange doing so now. This was not for lack of trying of course – I’ve just been on such an emotional rollercoaster recently that it has been hard to catch my feet. So much has happened in such a short amount of time. And although I wouldn’t say I’ve landed just yet, I do feel slightly more balanced.

Unfortunately, my least favourite month is right around the corner and I would be lying if I said I wasn’t feeling anxious. December has always been difficult for me, however it seems to fill me with a particular type of dread this year. That being said, 2016 has been just horrible and terrible and everything in-between. So, perhaps I should think of it more as the year finally coming to an end.

In the mean time, my plan is to update again more regularly. I’m sure I could do with the extra outlet to help me through the final stretch of the year anyway. With that being said – I should be back soon, most likely with a post about an exhibition I saw that I’ve been sitting on for months.

Until then, for anyone reading this: I hope you well. And if not, I hope you will feel well soon.

An Update, Sort Of

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I would like to apologise for the lack of posts as of late. Due to the merry-go-round that is mental health crisis and recovery, I have not been feeling my best this month.

In my attempts to distract myself from, well, myself, I have been continuing with my volunteering and visiting more exhibitions and art collections. Last weekend, I went to see the Georgia O’Keeffe exhibition currently running at the Tate Modern until the 30th October. I also visited the States of Mind: Tracing the Edges of Consciousness exhibition at The Wellcome Collection some weeks back, which a kind reader thoughtfully reminded me was taking place. I thoroughly enjoyed both, and with regards to the latter I intend to write up about some of the topics covered in more detail. I’m just not sure when I might get around to this just yet – but hopefully soon.

In the meantime, I would like to share some work by a digital artist I came across a few months ago during a women’s only course I attended on surviving abuse. The artist’s name is Frizz Kid – aka Hana Shafi – and I think their work is wonderful. I’m 96% sure my unstable emotions have played a role in how hard some of these hit me, but I just think the messages within them are beautiful and so delicately done. I’ve included some of my favourites below, which I sometimes like to reflect on whenever I’m having a particularly bad day.

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More of their awesome work can be found here. In summary: to anyone who has not been feeling their best lately – I hope this week is better, and take care.

Postcard Therapy, Part I

Free

I’ve gotten into quite the habit of collecting postcards. In addition to many being too pretty and/or funny not to, I’ve found they’re often an inexpensive way to preserve the memory from a particular time, place or event. Therefore you can imagine my admiration when I discovered the therapist I’m currently seeing is also an avid postcard fan. What’s more, she likes to write down our future appointments for me on the ones she has collected, which all go on to make a nice little addition to the sleeve at the back of my planner.

After leaving one of our sessions earlier I was struck with the idea of starting (yet another) ongoing series, this one focusing on the postcards she gives me. So without further adieu, here is part one – an instalment from today, courtesy of artist and cartoonist Dan Perjovschi from The Room Drawings in 2006.