Most mental health issues have a baseline. Meaning there is a level of symptoms (ie Dissociation, suicidal ideation, anxiety, etc.) that is “normal” for that person. Their baseline.

At certain moments throughout my day, my entire world freezes as I confront a barrage of thoughts imposed by my mental illness, masquerading as undeniable truths.

The rational part of me acknowledges that most, if not all, of these thoughts are concoctions of my own mind—twisted fabrications born for whatever twisted reasons my psyche conjures.

These “intrusive thoughts”, vary in intensity, ranging from mild doubts like “You’ll never accomplish X” to seismic assertions such as “Your loved ones would be better off if you were dead.” Each side of this coin carries an oppressive weight, drowning me in a sea of overwhelming emotions.

There are instances when I can discern that these thoughts are unfounded. I can methodically piece together evidence, exposing the fallacy my mind has woven. Sometimes, this rational approach helps, allowing me to release the grip of these thoughts and move forward. Yet, it’s not always that straightforward.

Sometimes it takes a full-on meltdown and showing up at my mother’s house in tears asking her to tell me she wouldn’t be happier if I was dead.

Despite recognizing the blessings in my life on a daily basis, an insidious feeling persists—a pervasive suspicion that it’s all a facade.

The looming dread extends to the fear of returning home one day to find, the culmination of a life’s worth of effort and love vanished.

I brace myself for the inevitable day when everyone ceases to love me. In the recesses of my mind, this day is as certain as death.

In response to these internal struggles, my consistent reactions are always, without fail, either a nihilistic impulse to “set it all on fire and watch it burn” or darker thoughts of self-harm and suicide.

These are my self-destructive tendencies at their best.

My emotions are almost always too big for my body and the above is the result we see. I know these reactions and behaviors can be too much for the people around me and that I can come off as dramatic or like a child having a tantrum.

Once I am stable I can very clearly see that. I then feel terribly guilty and slightly crazy for the way I reacted to whatever the thing was.

When I am in it tho it’s different. It’s very black and white.

Either the world is the problem or I am and therefore one of us has to go.

Typically I am left with the feeling that it is me who is the problem and even though the high emotion levels have passed it doesn’t take the feeling and thoughts with it, they just get a little quieter, less intense.

This is how I live my day to day. A head full of hushed voices telling me all the reasons I shouldn’t exist. This is my baseline.

“I can’t go on, I’ll go on.”

 Samuel Beckett