Hey guys!

I have some more mind mucus for you.

Why don’t you sleep is a question I get asked a lot. I’m an insomniac with an arsenal of mental health problems, so the answer to this question is infinite….

A lot of the time I don’t know, I just lay here and wait, but nothing happens. Then there are other times when my head is so full, mental debates go on for hours and I worry about everything.

Right now, it’s 7.30 in the morning. I haven’t slept yet. I’m tired. My body is heavy and my eyes feel like they’re full of sand. I think sleeping has been harder for the last few nights because my parents went away earlier this morning. I’ve never, in my whole life, been away from my mum and dad for longer than four days. They’ll be away ten.

A brief bit of background so you know how this is even possible:

**go easy clicking on these links if you’re squeamish**

Before I suffered from anything mental health, I was diagnosed with Type 2 Arnold Chiari malformation. I was 9. But wait…the fun did not stop there. As a type two, I was born with a scoliosis. I’ll tell you more about these conditions soon, but for now, back to why I’ve never really been without mum and dad.

9 years old: Diagnosed.

10 years old: Brain surgery.

11 years old: Spinal surgery.

12-14 years old: Complications.

15 years old: My twin sister is diagnosed with both Arnold Chiari and Scoliosis.

16 years old: My mental health stuff kicks off.

17 years old: My twin is diagnosed with epilepsy.

— It goes on like this until our current day. Basically, they’ve never left us for longer than four days in case we got sick. We’re beyond lucky to have amazing parents.

Anyway… so them going away has caused a gut-full of anxiety for me (not so much my twin because she’s traveled alone lots of times), but seen as these stories have sort of become about the weird side of mind fucks that you rarely see portrayed in the movies, I thought I’d tell you about this other thing that’s been bothering me. Introducing the strange saga of The Labels.

Right now I’m awake because I’ve been obsessing about labels. Not personal identifiers, those things that separate you into groups at high school, I’m talking about the little cotton kind that are stitched into your clothes. I can feel the labels in my pajamas, scratching at the bottom of my back and tickling the top of my neck. Thing is… there are no labels in my pajamas. Not one. I always cut them out immediately. It’s been an obsession of mine since I was young.

So this label thing makes zero sense, right? Right. Alas, whether it’s real or not, that is what’s happening. It keeps happening. I have changed no less than four times in the last three hours, but my head is refusing to get past it.

For any member of the just-don’t-think-about-it brigade that might be reading this. I know you mean well, but I can’t just quit. I would love to because believe me, this is no fun. Unfortunately, it feels as real as ants crawling across my skin, and nobody is easily ignoring ants walking up and down their spine.

The only way I’ll be able to fix it is if I jump in the shower. Why will that fix it? Fucked if I know for sure, but I think it’s got something to do with feeling clean… convincing my head that there is nothing on my skin that could be itching me while I’m naked. Something like that. Power of suggestion is a jerk, and OCD is it’s BFF.

This is one of those times I would like to split my mind open and see what is happening inside.

As always, feel free to talk about anything related in the comments… I love swapping mental health stories with you guys, I don’t know… somehow it makes me feel less alone… ❤

Chat soon

xo

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About bookishblurb

YA writer. Jedi. Junk food enthusiast. Rumored pink Power Ranger, and avid collector of book boyfriends.

6 responses »

  1. Jim O says:

    You’re not alone with the MH stuff. And some of what you’re describing could be a physical problem just as much as a mental one. Brains are weird things, I should know- I melted a good couple chunks of mine away with hematomas. After doing that, I now get phantom smells all the time (along with a million other unfortunate-to-unbearable symptoms). I’ll be driving, doing the laundry, sleeping and all of a sudden I smell body odor or something burning, or someone with a lot of body odor being burnt. My wife, who is someone who relishes the times she *can* say, “Yes, it’s you who smells,” has certainly become sick of me asking.

    Nothing makes the smell go away except the smell going away. Doctors say the burning one is normal (has happened with other people with similar injuries), but the BO one might be more psychological. Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t. All I know is that when I start to smell one of the two, it is all I can think about other than the close-to-paralyzing thoughts that I’m having a stroke, aneurysm, or some other brain bleed again & only have minutes/seconds to live.

    So, in summation, smells are my labels. It’s cool that you write about this stuff, out here in the open. I have a blog that is completely empty because these things seem like the only things that matter enough to fill it with, but I just can’t do it. So keep doing it for me!

    – @JD_ODonnell

    • bookishblurb says:

      Hi, my friend.

      It’s so good to hear from you. Although, obviously I wish we were talking about anything else. Thank you so much for reading and sharing your story. My sister experiences burning smells a lot since she had her surgery. I spend most of my time choking on the perfume she uses to try and (unsuccessfully) drown it out. I’m not complaining, she’s constantly checking my skin for crawling spiders 😀 I make jokes, only because I’ll cry if I don’t. I will absolutely keep talking about this stuff for you, and if you ever want a spot over here to vent/talk about stuff… just let me know. You’re more than welcome ❤

  2. jmh says:

    I had no idea you’d been through so much. I think it makes you even more amazing. My family has a rainbow of MH issues, from depression and alcoholism to hoarding and manic depression and schizophrenia. So far, I seem to have dodged multiple bullets, although I can be prone to the “blues” and have to be careful to get plenty of exercise, friend time, and healthy food.

    So far I’ve been fortunate, but I’ve lost two wonderful people to depression, not including a grandfather I never got the chance to know. It can happen to anyone.

    *Hugs*

    • bookishblurb says:

      Hugs to you, my friend. Thank you so much. You’re very kind. I’m sorry mental health has touched your life so relentlessly. It breaks my heart ❤

  3. michelle says:

    I can understand. Depression and anxiety by age 13. Pain in body developed at 14. Chronic fatigue by 20. Mental breakdown age 23 for 6 months. Diagnosed fibromyalgia 24 currently in pain every day, unable to grip things sometimes, moodswings, memory loss and chronic fatigue plus more. Stay positive you never know what will happen tomorrow

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