Tim Gonino’s “Know The Five”
A person’s mental health is just as important as their physical health. Just like an untreated case of the flew can take your life in extreme cases, so can a depressive episode. Humans can be so easily corrupted by irrational thinking and their personal situation can be clouded by thought repression and chemical mix ups. Mental illness is not something that evident to a lot of people, because our society does not commonly recognize mental illness like any other one. That’s why knowing the 5 signs of mental illness and create a common language for people openly discuss these issues.
I know if I had known these 5 signs, or any of my friends did, I would have gotten help a long time ago. Throughout high school, I would have weeks and months of mental and emotional distress, seemingly for no reason. My perception of reality was a miserable one, with anxiety at every corner and a blanket of depression covering every day. Yet, I couldn’t pin point a reason for things being bad, of course there were small things in my life that most teenagers experience, but nothing that bad. There was no reason to be sad, unfortunately my depression makes me blind to the good as well. It detaches me from my friends, my family, every experience that I have throughout the day. My depression makes a full life empty. If depression lasts long enough, it will make your life empty. My anxiety takes the expression of extreme fear. I’m normally an above average fearlessly sociable person, but when my anxiety takes over I become silent. I recede into myself, I create this web of lies in my head that every action and every word that leaves my mouth will lead to my imminent ostracization from everyone in the room, “who am I kidding, they all already can’t stand me anyway.” My anxiety is an endless cycle of irrational and perpetual nonsense brewing inside my own head that seems almost impossible to escape.
Anxiety and depression are two separate entities that go hand in hand for me. My worry fuels my stagnation which leads to depression. The increased stagnation only leads to more worry as the life continues to move forward around you fueling my anxiety. It’s a perpetual cycle that continues to dig me deeper and deeper into a hole that become so difficult to crawl out of.
I have been dealing with these issue for quite some time in my life, I’m not sure how much longer I will be dealing with them. A couple year, maybe the rest of my life. All I know that my mental instability is a reality of my own life currently and I need to going about helping myself in the best way possible. I see a therapist once a week, take daily anti-anxiety/anti-depression medication, and begin every day with a 10-minute meditation. Some days are better than others, but since I have begun to help myself I have felt the healthiest I have ever been. I feel like I have control over the direction of my own life the ability to create change in the world around me. I don’t feel hopeless, I don’t wish for the end to come soon, and I know that I’m not alone in this battle.
1 in 5 people have diagnosable mental illnesses, take the time to know the 5 so that you have the knowledge to change a person’s life who might be feeling this constant pain without any knowledge of a hope for change.