Here’s an interesting fact you may not know. October is Mental Illness Awareness Month. It doesn’t get as much press as Breast Cancer Awareness Month, because, duh, no boobies. Unless of course your particular flavor of mental illness provokes you to run topless through the streets. But that’s really the edge case.
Most mentally ill people look like everyone else. I am possibly not the best example of that with my technicolor hair, but I think I’d probably have technicolor hair even if I didn’t have periodic depression and anxiety. Conditions like depression, anxiety, and other garden variety neuroses often can be managed so well that most people around the person doesn’t know they’re sick. Also, most mentally ill people get really good at hiding their symptoms. However, hiding your symptoms (or worrying about how well you’re hiding them) can cause stress, which can cause things to get worse.
It would be delightful if my Abby Normal brain was my only embarrassing medical condition. It’s not. I also have chronic issues with my digestive system. Really, to be a functional human being, you need to be able to do three things: eat, sleep and breathe. I’ve had issues with two out of three of those most of my life. If I ever develop serious allergies I’m totally screwed.
I’ve been trying harder to manage my digestive problems, looking into food and lifestyle changes. It’s been kind of tough, because upon investigation, the diet that is best for me is almost completely the opposite of the diet my husband needs to manage his Type 2 diabetes. Naturally.
At this point, I’ve found help from my grandmother. She tended to have less “planned meals” and instead would make an entree, and four or five totally different side dishes that were whatever she had on hand, including leftovers. That way, everybody just grabs the one or two sides they like and can eat without getting sick.
I’m probably going to dive back into the “managing your attention” stuff soon. Right now, my attention is focused on getting the three legs of my “functional human body” tent-pole fixed. And also writing like a madwoman.
Hope your October has started off brisk and bright.