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Showing posts from 2013

this is our story

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this is not my story.

i have never really written my story - at least not in story format.  you have read great detailed scenes of my life, but i have never shared 'my story'.  there are a lot of reasons for this.  the first reason is that the narrative structure of my life story is thoroughly unimpressive.  instead of having a magnificent aristotilean arc, it has this horrible parabolic frenzy way about it that makes it hard enough to write, let alone read.  the second reason is simply that i don't feel real ownership over my story.  it doesn't feel like it belongs to me.  this feels like the story of a lot of people.
this feels like a story of friends, family, and bystanders.
it feels like a story of my little newfoundland life and my great province and the beer i drink and the bread i make.  it also feels like the story of people who i have never met but who share simple parts of my life.  it feels like telling this story as my story would be pulling at the thread …

further notes on smiling and stigma

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now that i'm happy i don't have much to write about.  so i'm trying anyways to dig deep into the pit of words inside me and pull out something that is worth saying.  i'm not sure how successful i've been.  you can be the judge of that.
we all live in our own different little realities. there are a lot of harrowing and macabre details to my reality that i don't particularly enjoy sharing but i do anyways, and sometimes people trumpet around and say it makes me brave, but i don't really think so.  i think the people who listen to what i'm saying are brave.  they are the heroes.  woven in and out of this blog are my little realities, the small little facts that hold my world together like secrets.  they are the little details that people see and feel a punch in the stomach or chills down their spine.  


these are largely chronicled in (this) e-mail which i sent to my friends and family a year and a half ago. i will try not to go through them all again.  th…

the six things i have learned from unbearable sadness

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there are things that come from sadness. one of them is knowledge.
people spend a lot of time talking about the benefits of depression; how it hurls you into a world and life that is much deeper than however you were living before.  this is partly true.  i'm not so sure it outweighs the detrimental effects of depression, such as being depressed all the time, but there are definitely benefits from depression, little gifts that find their way into your psyche and then one day you realize the simple fact that you have learned something.
so these are the things i have learned from my sadness.  i am sharing this little macabre compendium not to trumpet my wisdom, but to remind people of the little hopes that exist in sorrow, and hopefully somewhere this will ring the little bells of truth for somebody.
and so here we are.  i have been unbearably sad for over six years.  i am finally starting to feel better.  these are the things i have learned.
1. there is love. there is something abo…

an ode to my depressive self

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to my depressive self - you are not me.
that is what i have to say first.



i know depressive personality disorder is not necessarily a /thing/ provided by DSM but the thing is, sometimes it just feels like you have a depressive personality.  it feels like there is a different part of you that exists when you are depressed.  there are different voices inside your head that tell you different things, and you need to learn to know who you are through them and who you are outside of them and that is not an easy thing to do but from this i have learned that i have a separate depressive personality, a person that exists when i am depressed who does not exist otherwise.  she is a person who is drenched in cynicism.  she is cold but softhearted. she loves people fully and relentlessly but in the most misguided ways.  she is great and terrible but she is not me.  that is what i have to say first.

i will tell you right now that i blame a lot of things on my depressive self.  there are a lot of b…

my heart, my opus

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it is time to tell you a story. this is a story about me. here is a hint: you already know most of the story. most of the story is about me being sad, miserable, depressed, long depreciative fugues, blahrghblarghblaargh etc.  from the very root of my root i have felt worthless and ugly and miserable and awful.  that is something that rings more true than anything else to me and it always has. but this is a happy story. it's a story mostly about a song.  incidentally, the song is called salve regina, and it was written by ramona luenguen. but that doesn't matter much.
chapter one: once upon a time i was in toronto and i had this horrible wave of suicidal thoughts and tendencies that just absolutely completely washed over me and everything that i am.  i wrote this poem at a cafe called the world is not meant for me and i meant every word of it:
the world is not meant for me beauty might be everywhere and stars might fall and trees might reach to the sky that might be blue that …

not myself today at work

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so today is the launch of the partner's for mental health 'not myself today' campaign at work.  the campaign looks at opening up conversations about mental health in the workplace and reducing stigma.  they even have a 'not myself day' where people wear their mood on a pin! all in all, it's pretty exciting.
you can check out more about the campaign here: http://www.notmyselftoday.ca/home


i don't have all that much to say about this other than it's pretty exciting.
i'm a student. i've had small jobs and jobs for awhile but ultimately my main job is being a student right now and that suits me just fine.  sometimes i wonder how on earth i managed to get a degree while i was depressed.  most of my friends roll eyes when i say that, but i think of just how miserable i was and i seriously wonder how i kept it together enough to keep churning out papers for four years.  and i don't necessarily think it is a good thing - it probably would have been …

short shame and self-sabotage

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today i had a therapy session where, as per usual, my therapist was amazing and gave me a lot of things to think about.
the thing is, lately i've been feeling overwhelming guilt about a whole lot of things. if someone were to ask me my top four regrets, i would be able to list them instantly.  it's easy to have regrets. we all do things we don't like and wish weren't associated with how people look at us. 
so that is part one of this post. i am a nice person who sometimes does horrible things that i end up regretting dailydailyeveryday.   this is what a circle of shame looks like: i am horrible i do terrible things i am a horrible person i don't deserve to be alive.  that is just one little example of the interior monologue that plagues lots of people, especially if they are depressed.  the point is, it isn't actually useful to think about things this way.  there is a tendency for me to hate myself as much as possible, so that it will matter less when other pe…

five: you're safe with me

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sometimes i find myself surrounded by enough friends and family who are able to gently coax me into the right decisions for my mental health and mental fitness. (i really dig the term mental fitness.  i'll probably be using it a lot from now on).  right now the right thing for me to do is write about my sadness. because i am feeling sad and i have been feeling sad for the past year and especially the past month and right now i just need help, and people to smile at me and tell me it is going to be okay.
this is how i feel.  when i wake up in the morning i feel like my entire body is swollen with lead. it feels like there is a cement block smashed on my head that tries to keep me in bed. then i get up.  i get out of my bed.  i want you to know that i really honest to god do absolutely everything i can to feel better.  so i get out of bed.  then i take nessie for a walk.  i walk briskly so endorphins can bop around and do their thing but it doesn't always help.  the sun is nice…

the lament of the lonely and waiting

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the interminable purgatory when you're caught between waiting to find the right medication/waitingtoseethedoctororpsychiatrist/waiting for any medication to work and what is either wellness or what you see as your inevitable demise is one of the hardest things about depression.  it's one of the things looked over the most but cried over constantly. any brief wade into depression forums will yield millions of posts from users beguiling do i really have to wait this long and our depressive forefathers reassuring us to waitwaitwait and swearing it is worth the wait and promising us if we just hang in there it will be okay.  


this period is a time when you make the same decision every day, several times a day.  you wake up and you say "it is just another day" which could mean "another day to bide with my demons" as much as it could mean another day that you might hurt yourself.  because every day you spend teetering on the cusp of something horrible.  and that…

i call bull$#it: cutting, suicide, and the things we don't understand

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this isn't something i will enjoy writing very much, and might not be something many people enjoy reading.  i don't even particularly want to post it for those reasons.  but the reason i am writing this is for the few people who will read this and say oh my god yes, because even if we can talk about depression there are a lot of parts of depression that are still so hard to say and to speak and to call our own.  i've been depressed for six years and woven in and out of that time have been little threads of self-harm, suicidal thoughts, and disordered eating.  so i'm going to pull on those threads a little now, to unravel the biggest pieces of stigma in sadness; the things people understand the least.  so for now i'll start with cutting.  
here are my own pieces of truth.  i'm not saying it or talking about cutting and self-harm it for any other reason than this: i want other people to be able to talk about it too.  there is something so isolating in the most a…

from a woman who is hard to love

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before we get started and my friends start grinding their teeth and saying but meaggy we love you! just know that i mean a very certain thing.  i mean i am the kind of woman that warsan shire talks about in this poem.  i know that people love me and i love them too.  this is more about me saying that i am the furthest thing from what the world wants me to be, and i'm okay with that.  but not everyone is.
you are terrifying and strange and beautiful something not everyone knows how to love.   (warsan shire) -- http://warsanshire.blogspot.ca/2011/01/poem-eleven.html 
i love boundlessly.  i love people i barely know.  this is a phenomenon that comes not from being neurotic, but from caring sincerely and deeply about everything.  anytime i have any kind of crush or mild little love for anyone, it comes from this little chesnut of truth deep inside of my soul which is this: i really, genuinely, wholeheartedly and full-throttledly (notaword) love people.  i get deeply invested in people w…

partners for mental health: not myself today

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hey guess what! i'm the newest community correspondent for partners for mental health!  this is one of my first steps to wellness.  there are a handful of us across canada and we do things like blog and tweet and engage with media to promote partners for mental health and their message!
when i started writing this blog, i was not well.  i would howl through the day and cry through the night and spend my days with the bell jar or i would sleep for 20 hours at a time.
once i started writing this blog i started perusing the internet for groups that support the mental health cause and work to eliminate mental health stigma.  and then i came upon partners for mental health (@PartnersforMH) and all of their campaigns and there were a lot of little cogs in my head that went clickclickclock because the organization is simple and lovely and everything the world needs it to be.  the organization is about mobilizing and action. 


so hi. my name is meaggy aylward.  i am a 22 year old go-girl …

ottawa, ho!

this is a short post to tell you that i am moving to ottawa today.   i am scared and it feels like someone has a balloon in the cavity of my torso that they are blowing up which feels a little like anxiety. and also excitement.  i'm excited too.  ottawa is full of the most wonderful people and my most darling friends and i know that this is the best thing i can do for myself right now and i will be full of happiness and fun and joy.
i'm driving with hot geoffrey, so obviously the road trip is going to be a hilarious display of disgruntled meaggy following redundant safety measures and my dear father trying to interrupt my crying.  maybe i will make a rule: dad you're not allowed to interrupt my crying. i'm going to get there and be hurled into errands like oh i don't know buying everything you need to live.   i will post something longer about the shared tragedy of moving away from newfoundland.  later.  when i'm done crying.  
for now, let this rock know i lo…

four: ring in the true

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now it's time for a little cheerier new years post.
the previous one was a bit of a backstory.  just that i've been a bit sad (understatement supreme) the past few days and needed to take a bit of a weary look back on my year.
the truth is, from an objective point of view, i've had an amazing year.  i graduated from university, i was surrounded by friends, i got it together and changed my whole life plan, i've sung some songs, been with family, and gotten the courage to decide to move to ottawa so i can find my way home.

every moment happens twice, inside and outside
the world inside of me has been dark and dormant, but the world around me has been spinning so fast it sings.  sometimes it is impossible to reach the true - to hold and understand that the world spinning around you is the world you need to be part of.  but i'm a little happy today, and so i can stick my hand into a small velvet black abyss and pull out bells, little golden tones of truth and the ring …