The Long Road to Betterment

As human beings, regardless of our backgrounds, we’ve become conditioned to evaluate our success in life based on the monetary value of our material possessions. The impact of this trending train of thought has become detrimental to our society, and is especially toxic for those of us who already struggle to find our sense of selves, our true value.

This shift in humanity, in my opinion, grew exponentially with the rise of the technological era. While it’s existed within us for several generations, it’s much more prominent in the last few. And while recently there has been a small faction bringing minimalist living to light, currently more than ever we have become obsessed with the idea of owning the best and newest things.

This has been a difficult post to write because of my own current struggles on the topic. Where is the line between valuing possessions over what really matters, and yearning for a sense of security you’ve never known? There’s obviously financial security in the way of assets, and then there’s having a stable life. Who’s to say when we’ve taken it too far, and how do we separate the wants from the true needs?

I was raised as a welfare baby, my mom on social security, section 8, food stamps, and I’ve had government provided health insurance for my entire life. My mom still survives on the programs, and now I’m raising my daughter on food stamps and free health care as well. It’s not a choice, because while my husband works, it’s not enough, and I can’t bring in enough money with my disabilities to make the pain they’d cause worth the while.

I’m sure my mother wasn’t proud to need all that assistance to raise me, and I’m certainly not proud either. We recently began trying to apply for home loans, as we’ve both lived under mostly slum lords for our entire lives and we want better for our daughter. Long and painfully disappointing story short, we got denied this week and it broke me.

This switch has gone off inside of me, making me feel guilt, inferiority, and judgment towards myself. I swore I’d never raise my child on welfare, but this was before I knew of my physical restraints. Despite my lack on control in the matter, there’s a certain self resentment that comes with that, a sense of worthlessness. I thought I’d found the perfect home for us, actually allowed myself to get excited for once, and now someone else’s family will fill the home.

It’s been an incredibly trying week, with tensions always escalating and tensions always rising due to our current crappy living situation, and I haven’t felt this defeated in a really long time. Especially for those of us with mental illness, stability is incredibly imperative to our success, and it’s my firm belief that if I can finally achieve stability, maybe I can finally begin my journey to betterment.

What I thought was one step closer turned out to be two steps back, but I must still press on. I have to believe that there’s more left in life for me than just the current chapter, that the book will have at least a relatively halpy ending. Here’s to everyone else who’s had a disappointing week or felt broken by something outside of your control. Life gave us lemons, so I guess we’re making lemonade, no matter how sweet or sour it tastes.

When Life Throws you a Curveball

I just really loved the picture and I couldn’t find a good curveball picture.

There are days when you wake up and realize everything bad that can happen will most likely happen.

That happened to me yesterday.

That is true for all people, but for someone with a mental illness, it can spell real trouble. That’s how I feel today.

I started my day by waking up at six in the morning and not getting out of bed until 9:30am. I just laid there, as life started to tell me, “not today James.”

I hate those days.

When I finally found the will to get out of bed it was like nothing could go right. Water was too cold to start my shower. Then I couldn’t focus half the time and more than once got lost in a daydream.

I finally got dressed to start my day, my plans were a coffee shop visit, a few hours of studying, and a much needed Costco visit.

It just wasn’t my day.

My car wouldn’t start. Figures. It failed this morning because I was forgetful last Friday and left my key in my car in the start position. I failed to drive my car after yesterday morning and over the weekend so my battery never had a chance to charge. What can I say I have been really busy when I left my keys in the car.

I couldn’t get someone to jump start my car so I ended being stranded. So much for the best-laid plans. At times life just wants to throw a curveball at you, you can try and hit it out of the park or just let it hit the catchers glove.

So I chose to restructure my day. Wrote a blog. Wrote a discussion post for my classes and did some writing. I finished my edits and put in my application for the screenplay competition. I thought, okay today started out bad but hey but in baseball, there is always another at-bat.

So there I was ready to hit that curveball again and things just fell apart. Things were said and I am sitting here in a really bad mood trying my best to write every bad feeling out of my head.

It times like these where I just need to realize that it’s not my day. It was never fated that I would have a great day. Life is funny like that at times.

So I made the decision to just let go. Play some much-needed gaming time on Shadow of War. Maybe spend some money on something I want.

I really should have just walked away and not say anything. Listened to my inner voice to just let it go. I really should have stayed in bed yesterday. It would have served me so much better. I get lost in all the messiness of my life, and it always seems when things are going good in my life, something bad comes up. I took a big risk and it’s hard to know where to go from here.

Good thing there is today. I am not letting what happened yesterday to makes it way into my life today. Or at least I will try my best to. I really want so bad to just give up today and save it for another day.

I just need to get through a few more hours of real writing done and hopefully complete some school work. It might be better to just take the day off, but if I let this one thing, the one thing I swore ten years ago to never let back in my life…

And yet, its a part of me again and that can’t be good.

Life is funny. It will throw you a curveball when you least expect it. And yesterday life was throwing it for strikes.

Three strikes and your out.

Life is funny.

Always keep fighting.

J.E. Skye

Photo Credit: unsplash-logoJaanus Jagomägi