You Can’t Love Yourself Until You Like Yourself

Over the past four months, I have been on a journey to self love. I am sort of considering this to be an extension/the next chapter of my eating disorder recovery, and let me tell you it has been anything but easy. I’ve engaged in some wonderful communities through social media and I have found such positivity, I have challenged myself to look at my body in ways I hadn’t previously, I have examined the thought processes I engage in and challenged them, and I have been working to see positivity in all things about me.

But recently I have had a thought. When you’re starting to date someone, you almost never truly love them right away, you like them first. Perhaps a journey to self love is not so different from the journey of engaging in a romantic relationship. I can pinpoint a few specific parts of myself that I love: I love my legs, my sense of humour, my ability to empathize with people, and my smile. But when I look back on my life, I didn’t wake up one day and immediately love these things. I remember when I discovered that I was funny. I had always like to joke around in school, I enjoyed it and I liked it. I was never the smartest kid in the class, but I knew I could tell jokes and be funny. I liked this about myself. I was in the second grade and there was a girl in my class named Gabrielle. We weren’t great friends by any means, but we did happen to be the two tallest people in our class. It was our school picture day and our class was being organized by height to take a class picture. We were waiting for our class’s turn to go up for the picture and Gabrielle and I were joking around, something I did regularly, and she told me she thought I was funny. She said this while laughing and with a smile on her face. I realized that my humour had the ability to make people happy, and I liked that. I realized that this was something positive about myself. I may not have been very smart, but this was something I was good at, and I realized then that I loved that. This whole scenario led to me loving my sense of humour.

When I look back on my life with regards to the things I love about myself, each of these loves has their own origin story. My legs, smile and ability to empathize with people each started out as something about myself that I liked, and then they each had their own defining moment and grew into something I loved about myself.

So I’ve been thinking about all of this lately. There is a lot of talk on social media these days about self love. There are amazing social media campaigns encouraging people to embrace the parts of their minds and bodies that have been deemed by society to be unworthy; and I think that’s great. But the thing that people don’t seem to talk about as much, is the fact achieving self love is not something easy.

We live in a world that is constantly telling us that so many parts of us aren’t worthy of love, and that is harmful and it is detrimental to our mental and physical health. But what if we looked at self love from a simpler lens, what if we changes the way we looked at it? What if we started out with liking things about ourselves? If you go out on a first date, and you like the person by the end of it then there is much more of a chance that you could one day grow to love this person. In my opinion, the relationship we have with ourselves is the exact same.

Let me give you an example. Throughout my life (this was heightened during and after my eating disorder), I have really hated my stomach. I remember being maybe 10 years old and thinking to myself that if my t-shirts were tight that I had to suck my stomach in all day because it was too big. This has followed me throughout my life and when I developed my eating disorder my stomach was the part of me I hated the most. I would search Youtube endlessly for videos of ab workouts and I would work out until I could not stand. Now that I am in recovery I have gained a fair bit of weight, and (lucky for me) most of it went to my stomach. Despite this new weight being a symbol of my recovery and a symbol of being healthier, I still could not embrace it. I couldn’t even fathom loving this part of myself that I viewed as disgusting. I decided recently that I did not want to live a life where I am constantly hating myself and constantly putting myself down. I thought that self love was something I could just jump head first into. I saw all of these beautiful women on social media of all different body types and they were embracing every part of their bodies- even their stomachs. I thought that I could be like that too. So I sat in the bath tub and I just stared at my stomach, waiting for that light to go off that would make me love this part of me. Spoiler alert: The light never went off. I felt so discouraged, I just didn’t understand why I couldn’t love myself. Then a little over a month ago, I was shopping and as is normal when clothes shopping, some items I tried on didn’t fit right or didn’t fit at all. The thing that surprised me, was that I was okay with this. If this had been even a couple months earlier, I would have immediately engaged in extremely negative thoughts about myself, but I just shrugged it off. It was that moment when I started to like my stomach.

I don’t love my stomach yet, but we’re still in the dating phase. We’re getting to know each other, and we like each other right now. Things are going well, and I think one day we’ll fall in love. I know that that day won’t happen right away, we’ll have to court each other for a while, wine and dine each other. But one day in the future, I will fall madly in love with my stomach, and I can’t wait for that day.

Surf’s Up

“Ride the wave. One day it will be over.”

The world is an ocean. It is wide, vast, and infinite. Sometimes I feel like we get thrown into this ocean of a world with no tools, no lessons, and no metaphoric flotation devices. Just like an ocean, the world has incoming and outgoing tides. There are times when the waves seem insurmountable, and there are times when they seem small enough to walk over; but the one constant is that life will have its waves.

People tell us about the waves that life can throw at us. They have no problem explaining the potential difficulties we may encounter, but they neglect to tell us what to do when we encounter them. They tell us that all of life’s waves will one day end, and to simply ride the wave until its end.

Which, for me, begs the question: How can I ride the wave if I was never taught to swim?

Before parents let their children swim in the deep end by themselves, they enroll them in swimming lessons. They prepare them for the dangers that the deep end can possess. I think there is something to be said for preparedness. I think that it makes logical sense that people are better equipped to swim through the deep ends of life when they have been given the proper tools and training to do so.

Like the ocean, life is an unpredictable beast. It can throw things at us that we never even thought possible, it will try to drown us. But would we not be better suited to handle these challenges if we were given proper tools? I understand, the unpredictable nature of life makes it hard to prepare for the unknown. I don’t even think that’s what I’m suggesting. It’s impossible to prepare for the unknown, that’s the very premise of unknown things. But when it comes to things like death, and grieving, why are we never taught how to cope? Why are we never taught to swim?

I look at my life and there are times when I would love nothing more than to simply ride the wave. The problem is that the world never taught me how. They never gave me floaties, swimming lessons, or a fludder board. They sent me into the world’s ocean and told me to ride the wave. But I never learned how to swim.

 

Where is the Light on Men’s Mental Health?

“Be a man.”
“Men don’t cry.”
“Men are strong.”
“A man does what he must- in spite of personal consequences.”

Why do we tell men that feelings are these awful things and that crying is bad? Why do we teach young boys to shut their feelings out and ignore them in the spirit of “being a man”? We live in a world that values braun and bravery over sensitivity and emotional intelligence and it is an extremely harmful way of thinking.

The world has made great strides with regards to the conversations surrounding mental health, but I believe that there is still a long way to go, especially when it comes to men’s mental health. We have come a long way in terms of our thinking surrounding mental health, it is not always looked at as a weakness or something made up. But there are still some really negative thoughts and voices out there in the world.

Something I have noticed is the drastic differences in the ways women’s and men’s mental health are looked at. Women are typically seen as fragile, or delicate (I don’t agree with this but that’s for another time and place), and it’s almost like these stereotypes make it easier for people to hear about women living with mental illnesses.  Men are typically seen as strong, brave, and without emotions. They grow up being told to “be a man” and that “men don’t cry.” What kind of people does this breed? This teaches young men that their feelings and emotions are things to push away and that they are bad. This teaches young men that they have nowhere to go to ask for help if they need it because they will be seen as weak, or scared. It’s stereotypes like these that seem to make it difficult for people to understand that men can and do struggle with mental illnesses.

Why do we send children into the world thinking that they will be looked down upon or seen as less than for reaching out for help? Why do we do this and then wonder why they encounter problems?

This is something that I struggle to grasp. Mental illness does not discriminate when it comes to the people it affects, men and women can and do both suffer from all mental illnesses- and we know this. We have been shown the statistics, and we have heard people speak out. So why do we continue to perpetuate stereotypes that encourage men to hide their problems in secret?

In recent years, there has been an onslaught of women of notoriety coming forward with their stories of living with mental illness. While there have been a few men of similar statuses to share their own stories, there seems to be a far smaller amount. Where is the voice for men’s mental health? Where is the voice telling men that feelings are okay and that it’s okay to cry or ask for help? Where is the voice telling them that those stereotypes, and those moulds they were told to fit into are wrong? Where is the voice telling them that their feelings are valid and that they are just as worthy of support as anyone else and that if they reach out for support it doesn’t make them less of a man?

I don’t know where the voice is that can give us an updated definition of a man, but for the world’s sake, I hope we find it soon.

The Queen of the Castle

I sat in my tower, 
way up high
and I watched the scene
with a smile on my face. 

I watched the bridges 
of our past
go up in flames. 

I smiled because
even though you lit
the matches and started 
the fires all those
years ago, 
I threw gas on our fucking 
bridges, and I was happy
to watch them burn
worse than the hell
they were made of.

The Self Care Paradigm

Have you heard the term self care? What does it mean to you? Do you think of face masks, shopping, pedicures, and bubble baths? Do you think of seemingly simple things, like brushing your hair, eating breakfast, brushing your teeth, going to the doctor, or doing laundry? Chances are, when you hear the term self care you think of the former as opposed to the latter, but what if I were to tell you that the latter is in fact sometimes more important than the former?

When I was in school for my undergrad in social service work, I had many professors talk to us about the concept of self care, and usually to them it included things like watching a movie, eating their favourite snack, or having a glass of wine. Now don’t get me wrong, I love all of those things, but hearing this from so many people caused me to buy into the notion that self care is glamorous and fun. I love a bubble bath and a face mask as much (probably more) than the next person, but what I have learned in recent months is that sometimes self care is so much more than that.

In recent months, my definition of self care has drastically changed. I now consider my self care to be things that are bettering me and my life, and that truly benefit me. I used to think that self care had to be fun and a treat, but I’ve learned recently that the stuff that really matters for my self care usually is not fun. For me now, self care is things like trying to wash my hair more than once a week, brushing my teeth twice a day, keeping my room clean(ish), doing laundry on a regular basis, going to therapy, going to doctor’s appointments, and yes… even the occasional bubble bath.

To sum it up, my definition of self care has now grown to mean that I do things that I need to do but that my depression/anxiety/body image issues make it hard for me to do. I push myself to do the things that my mind tries to tell me aren’t worth it or are too hard to get done. I still like to treat myself to things every once in a while, but I now feel that for me, self care goes a bit deeper than that.

Self care isn’t glamorous. To put it simply, it is taking care of yourself, and if that means doing the bare minimum when it comes to some things (like cleaning, or exercising or hygiene) but pushing myself to do that bare minimum, then you bet your ass I’m going to be proud of myself for pushing to get there.

Self care looks different to everyone, but I urge you to not get caught up in the notion that you have to treat yourself like a movie star in order to achieve it. Sometimes you just need to make sure you treat yourself like a human; and not only is that good enough, it’s pretty damn great.

Thoughts: To the Bone

Netflix originals seem to be all about the controversy lately! From 13 Reasons Why (I have not and will not watch this), and now with the new release of To the Bone. While I applaud Netflix for having the metaphoric balls to tackle some difficult subject matter, To the Bone has left me with more questions that I had before I watched.

For those of you who are not aware, To the Bone is a new Netflix Original film about a girl named Ellen, who struggles and lives with Anorexia. In the months leading up to the release, this film has been a source of controversy throughout many social media outlets. Let me run you through some reasons why:

  • Lilly Collins, who stars in the film as Ellen, has a personal history with eating disorders and lost an incredible amount of weight for the role. She says that the weight loss was done in a safe, controlled, and healthy way. But many people who are also in recovery from eating disorders have expressed concern about this online. They are saying that the idea of someone losing weight in a healthy way with the intent of portraying someone with a life threatening eating disorder is a dangerously mixed message to be sending.
  • People are questioning the ethical choices of the movie’s crew (just FYI, the movie is based on writer Marti Nixon’s experiences in treatment with her own eating disorder) of allowing Lilly Collins to potentially jeopardize her own health and recovery by preparing for this role.
  • Many people in the online body positivity and eating disorder recovery communities have expressed fear that this movie may glamourize eating disorders and the behaviours that go along with them. This would be so harmful when in reality what people need is education surrounding eating disorders and calling them what they are: The mental illness with the highest mortality rate
  • Many people have also expressed concern that the film could potentially perpetuate harmful stereotypes associated with eating disorders. For example: That an eating disorder affects only certain type of people, or looks a certain way. Historically, the media has had a tendency to only portray eating disorders by showing images of young, white, emaciated women.

Overall, prior to this film being released, I had seen more concern and negativity about this film that positivity or praise. I saw countless urges to people in recovery to not watch it, due to possible triggers. But, I decided that I am strong enough in my recovery that if I were to feel triggered I would simply stop watching. I decided I wanted to be able to form my own thoughts and opinions about the movie. So I watched it, and let me tell you have I got thoughts…

Things I liked

Firstly, I was thankful to see that the film was prefaced by a trigger warning. I felt that considering the subject matter and the fact that there are fairly graphic depictions of eating disorder behaviours and of very low weights that this was responsible. While the warning will not prevent people from watching (we can’t control people, as much as we’d like to sometimes) I felt that it was in very good taste to include it. It showed an awareness about the subject matter and made me feel like they had considered the possible effects that the film could have.

Something I felt was really well portrayed in the movie was the effects of Ellen’s illness on her family, as well as their struggles to understand. Eating disorders can create a ripple effect within families. It is incredibly difficult for people to essentially watch their loved ones die in front of them; it’s only natural for family to be effected in these situations. This difficulty is only compounded by a present lack of understanding of the loved one’s condition.

Unfortunately, there are many people who believe that eating disorders are a choice, and since that is not the case, people can be confused by how difficult recovery is as the complexity of recovery is not consistent with the notion that eating disorders are a choice. Now this is not to say that this is the only source of confusion for families of loved ones with eating disorders. These are complex illnesses and honestly they can be hard to understand for anyone. All in all, I think that To the Bone did a good job of illustrating a family’s struggle with eating disorders including the confusion, fear and hurt that goes along with it.

In the movie, the main plot centres around Ellen entering a new residential treatment facility. I was pleased to see the film show some (key word: SOME) diversity when it came to the other patients that Ellen was in treatment. For reference, the group home has seven residents. Of the seven, six were female, one was black, one vocalized struggling with an eating disorder other than Anorexia or Bulimia, and one was pregnant. Now while this was a valiant attempt at showing some diversity, it unfortunately leads me into…

Things I didn’t like

Eating disorders do not discriminate with regards to who they afflict. There is no one way to have an eating disorder nor is there any one particular way that an eating disorder can look. I appreciate that To the Bone attempted to represent this diversity, but I just felt that it fell short. I am someone who did not fit the societal picture of what “an eating disorder looks like.” I appeared to be at a healthy weight and often felt that I did not “look sick enough” to need help. This is not something uncommon and unfortunately I have heard many other people talk about experiencing similar feelings. I feel that To the Bone showed the majority of its patients as fitting societal expectations and stereotypes of what eating disorders “look like.” This is an extremely detrimental way of thinking especially to those living and struggling with eating disorders. To the Bone perpetuated these harmful stereotypes and in my opinion did not do justice to displaying the diversity and wide spread nature of eating disorders.

Now let’s go back to where I said that six of the residents in the group home were female; yes, there was a male patient. I think this was an amazing choice to show a male living and struggling with an eating disorder. It is too commonly believed that eating disorders are exclusive to women, and this did a great job at dispelling this.

However, in my opinion it wasn’t all good. SPOILER ALERT: Ellen becomes romantically involved with this male patient. Now first of all, in inpatient treatment settings, romantic relationships between clients is highly forbidden. People receiving that level of treatment for eating disorders are extremely vulnerable and relationships between two people in such vulnerable states could potentially be disastrous to recovery- so right off the bat it’s a pretty unrealistic story line. Secondly, I was extremely bothered by the film’s portrayal of the notion that “if someone struggling with an eating disorder finds someone to love them, then it will be a magical cure for them.

THIS. IS. NOT. TRUE.

People living with eating disorders are not sick simply because their lives are devoid of love. This though proves takes away from the severity of eating disorders. I feel that this part of the film trivialized and diminished eating disorders and honestly, this was probably the biggest disappointment to me.

Things I am neutral on

Now with regards to if the movie glamourized eating disorders, I genuinely did not feel that the film did this. I felt that the film accurately and genuinely portrayed certain eating disorder behaviours. The way Ellen had bruises along her spine because she was constantly doing sit ups, the way that the nurses at the treatment centre had to lock bathrooms for thirty minutes after meal times, the way that patients were terrified to get feeding tubes because the fear of food was that strong, I felt that these things were accurately depicted throughout the film.

The last thing I want to touch on is if the film is triggering. This part was hard for me to form an opinion on. I personally, did not find the film to be triggering. But that is not to say that it could not be triggering to others. I feel that I am at a very good place and I feel cert strong in my recovery. But I feel that for people who perhaps do not feel strong and confident in their recovery, or people who haven’t yet made the choice of recovery that this film has the potential to be triggering. My advice would be to use your judgement and if the film does get to be too much for you to remember that you have the power to simply stop watching. If that happens then take a beat, and reach out to someone you love and trust and have a conversation about you’re feeling.

Overall, I do not think that To the Bone was a terrible movie, but I also do not feel that it was the best portrayal of eating disorders. I think that this film had nothing but the best intentions- to raise awareness and create conversations about the reality of eating disorders. However, I feel that in some areas they did a disservice to the eating disorder recovery community. My final thought is in the form of a question that I would love to hear thoughts/comments on:

Will there ever be an appropriate way
to depict an eating disorder journey in film?

Low is Low

Have you ever thought about the negative thought processes you engage in?
I have, and what I’ve discovered about myself was pretty saddening. 

About three or four months ago, my depression and anxiety had become simply unmanageable. My bedroom was filthy, I was washing my hair maybe once every two weeks, I was only leaving my apartment to go to work (which was limited since my hours had been cut), I was isolating myself from people and things that I loved, I was spending full days in my bed… But at the time, I could not see that I had hit my version of rock bottom.

Let me tell you why.

The thing about humans is that we are all extremely unique beings. We experience things differently, have different ways of internalizing life events, and all around we simply process things differently from one person to the next. When we consider these differences, it seems logical to understand that each of us, as individuals has different versions of what low points of our lives look like.

I think that the work I do had a hand in the negative thought processes I began engaging in at this time. At the time when my mental health was rapidly declining, I was working as a Social Recreation Worker at a community mental health organization. When I take that into account, I can understand that I was seeing people who were some of the most marginalized and vulnerable people in my city. I saw people who I was working with, and saw that they were struggling and I began to engage in thought processes such as:

“I’m not that sick. Other people have it so much worse than I do.”
I don’t deserve to get help, other people need it more.”

I have since reflected on these thoughts and I have been able to realize just how detrimental they were. These thoughts had a huge hand in why I was super reluctant to reach out for support that I desperately needed. I viewed myself as a helper and was of the belief that I should have been able to handle things on my own. How could I be providing support and assistance to other people when I couldn’t even figure out how to support and assist myself?

What I have finally come to accept and acknowledge, is that as humans are all unique in the ways we process, experience and internalize things, we all have different versions of high and low points in our own lives. What might be difficult for my best friend, might not be difficult for me, and by the same token something that completely debilitates me might be something easy to handle for my best friend.

I realize now that three months ago I had hit the lowest point of my life, and for me that became my rock bottom. It didn’t matter that other people also had struggles, what matters is that for me, I was experiencing the hardest point of my life thus far. I was experiencing the lowest point of my life. I was not experiencing the same things that people around me were experiencing and the fact that I was trying to compare my struggles with those of others, was in fact me invalidating my own experiences. I was subconsciously saying to myself that my struggles weren’t valid and that they were not hard enough to warrant me worrying about them or seeking help.

If you find yourself struggling, focus on your struggles, your experiences and how you are processing these things. Please remember that the struggles and experiences of others have no bearing on you and yours. The things that are hard for you are just that, hard for you. The fact that you are struggling is completely separate from how other people experience and process struggles. Please remember that your experiences are valid and if you feel like you are slipping into your version of low, that you are worth reaching out for help and support.

A struggle is a struggle.
We may all experience low points differently,
but conquering them can give a universal high.

When Did “Fat” Become the Real F Word?

Why do we force words to live exclusively from one another?
Why can fat not mean beautiful?

I recently remembered something from when I was in the sixth grade. There was a girl in my class who was a bit bigger than most of the other students in our class. I remember hearing the way that the other students spoke about her, the mean jokes they would make behind her back, and the almost as cruel things they would say to her face. I remember noticing that she was being treated differently and in a negative way because of her size.

I decided then that I would never let myself look a way that would give other people an opportunity to treat me poorly. I wish I had taken this experience in a different way, as an example of people I never wanted to be like. I never would want to be treated like this classmate, but the lesson I learned was not to be kind to people, it was to never become fat enough to allow people be cruel to me.

I used to be so scared of the word fat because we live in a society that equates fat to ugly, or less than. I was scared of the idea of gaining weight because I thought that if I did then I would also become ugly or less than. We live in a society that puts limits on what words can be. I was more scared of being fat than I was of being a bad person, of being considered rude or mean, and I was scared of being fat more than I was worried about getting bad grades.

I was eleven when I learned that our world says that being fat is bad. I was eleven when I became afraid of gaining weight. I remember it like it was yesterday, and one day I hope to not be afraid. But for now, I will remember to be kind, and to stand up for those who are mistreated. I do not view gaining weight as the end all and be all of my life, and there are now many things I consider to worse things than ganging weight, but I am still somewhat uncomfortable with the idea of it. So until the day I am not afraid, I will choose to be kind and to reject cruelness.

Come Out, Come Out, Wherever You Are

I used to think that the parts of me that I hated, were hated universally by anyone and everyone I met. I assumed that because I hated my stomach and the excess fat I thought I had, that everyone around me hated it too.  I remember thinking that no one would ever fully love me. Because if I didn’t fully love me, how could I ever expect anyone else to?

So I would hide the things I didn’t like about myself from most people. There were times when I was completely ashamed of the fact that I live with multiple mental illnesses, so I would only disclose it to a select few people. I remember even after I had stopped self-harming I was completely petrified of the idea of anyone seeing my scars that I would wear long sleeved shirts and sweaters on even the hottest summer days.

This caused me to keep secrets from people close to me; parents, friends, partners, you name it and I probably kept secrets from them. I’m not talking life threatening secrets, but secrets nonetheless.

The thing is that I should never have felt like I had to hide any parts of me. Sometimes letting people in and showing them these parts of me helped me to see how they could be lovable.

I remember when I started taking medication for my anxiety I was tentative to tell people. I was worried that the stigma surrounding taking medication for mental illnesses would be too much for me to handle. Then I talked to a close friend about it and she told me that she viewed it as a sign of strength. She felt that by me making the step to take medication that I was being self aware enough to admit that my life needed more help than I had been giving it. Now I try to talk to people about the fact that there is no shame in taking medication for a mental illness, the same way there would be no shame in taking medicine for a cold.

Since being in recovery from my eating disorder, I have gained a substantial amount of weight. It’s been a huge adjustment for me, going from thinking that gaining weight was the worst possible thing that could happen to me, to trying to understand that gaining this weight was healthy. If I had never worked up the courage to be intimate with my fiance even after gaining weight, I never would have been able to fully appreciate my new body. I am still learning to love myself, but seeing that someone else loved me despite something that I perceived as a flaw was a huge catalyst for my journey of self love beginning.

What I’ve learned over the years is that someone who truly loves you will never make you feel like you have to hide parts of you. Someone who cares about you and your best interests will want to know about every part of you, and yes, I mean even the dark and scary parts that you keep so hidden they’ve collected dust.  There’s nothing healthy about secrets. Sometimes they start out with the best of intentions, but rarely will they have positive end results. Letting those dark and dusty parts come out can be a really daunting task, and I get that. The thing is that when you find someone worth letting them out for, it will be one of the most liberating and full of potential experiences of your life; it has been for me.

If You’ve Never Tasted Peanut Butter

I really hate questions about “what I did today.” I understand that questions like this are a pretty standard part of life, but they make me uncomfortable.

Why, you ask? Well, because some days, I really do not do that much, and that can make people look at me differently. There are days when either my depression, anxiety, or body image (or any combination of the three) make it extremely difficult to do things. There are days where leaving the house is too much for me, and migrating from my bed to the couch is my greatest accomplishment. There are days when every sight of my body brings me to tears, so the thought of being naked even for the purpose of bathing is paralyzing. There are nights when I’ve slept for two hours because the thought just wouldn’t stop, so I spend the day following binge watching Netflix to keep my mind from wandering.

But I can’t just tell people these things. When they ask me “What did you do today?” it’s easier sometimes to come up with a lie than to deal with the looks of pity, confusion or disgust. I know they don’t mean any harm, but they just do not understand. If I were to be honest on those days and respond with something like “Well today my biggest accomplishment was moving to the couch from my bed,” I know that some people would look at me differently. That is the problem with stigma. People do not understand that things that may seem like “simple, everyday tasks” are quite the contrary.

I live with multiple chronic mental illnesses. I am still learning how to cope and how to deal with them in my day to day life. People try to do their best to understand, but it’s hard to understand something they haven’t experienced. If you’ve never tasted peanut butter, you can’t really imagine the taste. Sometimes the thought of explaining the taste of my mental illness is just too hard. So if I seem hesitant to tell you how I spent my day, take a beat, and ask yourself if you’re ready for any possible answer. Remember that my life taste different than your’s and unless you’ve tasted my problems, you may not ever fully understand them.