I feel like this is me on a day to day, hour to hour basis. Bits of sun, Mixed with dark clouds. All of it, swarming and swirling, all the time. I got up this morning and went to church with my family for only the fourth or fifth time so far this year. It’s not because I’m leaving the church or considering paths alternative to Mormonism. It’s because I’ve become convinced that there is a real danger in being anywhere but in my bedroom on my bed. The anxiety of that has extended into the weekends and into every facet of my life unfortunately.
It was nice to feel the normalcy of going to church. It’s part of who I am, how I’ve been raised, and what I want myself to be. But at the same time – I felt nothing but fear there. I’m not sure if it was fear of where I was, or the fear of where I wasn’t – if you followed that. My mood was just perfectly a mirror of the photo above.
Who am I? What is my new lot in life given my new realities?
Jeffrey R Holland, in a defining talk on mental illness in the LDS strata, said this regarding hope during struggles with mental illness: “Believe in miracles. I have seen so many of them come when every other indication would say that hope was lost. Hope is never lost. If those miracles do not come soon or fully or seemingly at all, remember the Savior’s own anguished example: if the bitter cup does not pass, drink it and be strong, trusting in happier days ahead.”
I don’t believe him right now. I can’t. My mind is too much of a war zone, and my heart hurts too much from my mind. If there is someone out there who can take me and guide for awhile, I will gladly follow. In five weeks, this experience has officially surpassed my mission as the hardest thing I have ever done. My heart hurts. My mind hurts. I doubt the efficiency of me going on, but I will listen to and believe Elder Holland is this:
“Whatever your struggle, my brothers and sisters – mental or emotional or physical or otherwise – do not vote against the preciousness of life by ending it! Trust in God. Hold on in His love. Know that one day, the dawn will break brightly and all shadows of mortality will flee.”
I have to. That’s my only hope right now. The clouds must break, and this loneliness will end. They just have to.