Lately life has made me amazed and in awe. Absolute awe. I feel useless at describing how golden people and moments and animals and nature and the waves of life simply are.

We are laughing so much and spending time with friends and family and there are so many good things. Kind things. Lucky things.

I feel so thankful to be alive in a world with the depths of darkness, and the heavens of light too.

To be living. To be human.

So many things flow. And are in harmony.

Lately, we have celebrated me being self-harm free for two years. It’s wild, let me tell you, because for five years that was such an engulfing part of my life, and now… I can be without it. Somehow. I still have the same thoughts, yet the daily desperate urge to act on these behaviors has finally passed. They took well over a year of not self harming to go away.

Today I have these thoughts, but I tag them and move on. They are insignificant to my life today. They just float around in the empty spaces of my brain and they wheeze a bit, but that’s about it. They are just a tiny piece of me.

Lately I’ve been going for walks with the intention of being mindful, and these are so good. To take in the grass and the dew and all of the leaves. The universe really is extraordinary.

And to be writing for a job! This was such an unexpected surprise. I never knew that writing could actually pay, you know, like real life money. Writing was always something I had deemed as only a hobby, and definitely not something that you could support yourself with, unless you suddenly turned into JK Rowling overnight. It’s so crazy how things happen.

And I’m trying to not even care that my blog posts aren’t perfect, and my writing isn’t perfect, and that my photos definitely aren’t either. But all of these things are bringing me joy, and that is what matters.

Tapering off my SNRI has been interesting. I feel as though there was a big glass pane which has been removed, and now I’m all bare and exposed. The withdrawal side effects haven’t been as bad as I had expected, and following my doctor’s plan has definitely helped. Sometimes I swear that my head is floating above my body, and that my eyes are zooming in and out way too fast to be natural. It’s all very robotic. But these things will pass. Apparently it can take a while for your brain to adjust to doing it’s own thing. Something I won’t miss are the exhausting, brutal dreams. Venlafaxine dreams, anyone? A 20 minute nap turns into a horror movie every single time. Wild stuff!

Therapy is going and going and I think it’s going good, but it’s one of those things that you don’t really ever know how exactly it’s going because you’re not exactly the right person to be judging that. Using the skills that therapy has taught me is great though, because surprise! With enough practice they can actually help! I don’t know, I’m just so content at the same time as being all out of sorts because of the medication, or lack of, and it’s weird. But good. This is progress I think?

Lately I’ve just wanted to dwell in how the ocean sparkles, and how perfect the dew is, and how beautiful being by Cameron’s side is. There are so many good things when we are able to see them.

I’m grateful. I’m grateful.



Every single second runs and runs and flies and I can’t keep up.

Every word sounds clunky and bumpy and these sentences don’t form how they feel and I just don’t know how to say it.

My brain soars at one hundred and one miles per hour and this is unfiltered. This is me.

I don’t know how to deal with it. It has been over 700 days since I’ve last been flying. Since the ground met my feet. Since these drugs have grounded me.

I have been saved. And now I have to save myself.

I had forgotten how fast and unbearable that everything could be. How I can crash and burn and crash once again before anything even happens.

My heart beats so, so ungodly loud and with every beat I swear I can’t do it again. It beats and my thoughts pound and rattle through my ribcage, and I feel gone from my skin. From myself.

When my thoughts fly and sail through the darkest night and this feels like before. This is when all the bad things happen. And life crumbles away.

Yet this is good and this is progress and this is what I want, right?

I am here. I am sprinting. I am still.

Missed medication and recovery curveballs.

Sometimes recovery really is all over the place. Sometimes it’s messy. It’s uneven. It leaves much to be desired. Sometimes recovery feels like falling backwards, and sometimes it even is heading backwards for a while. Recovery is dynamic, changing, just as we humans are not static creatures. Our experiences parallel this.

On this blog, I try to have an optimistic outlook of recovery as a process, and all its ups and downs. I’m getting used to focusing on the stages of the process, which is good, however I need to remember that this trend line isn’t straight. It’s pointing in the right direction, but it’s a rollercoaster to get there.

A few nights ago, it was one of those nights. I felt as though I was back to square one, smack bang down where I started. One little blip, episode, moment, whatever you want to call it, really isn’t that major in the big scheme of things. But at the time, it can feel as though everything is crashing down, that everything is crumbling, and that all is against us. All of a sudden we feel alone, stuck, a shadow of who we have worked so hard to become.

To help manage a number of symptoms, I take the SNRI Venlafaxine every day at the same time. I have always stuck to this, and have never missed a dose. I have been warned, profusely, about the side-effects of missing a dose. These side-effects are apparently greater in intensity than most SSRI medications, as Venlafaxine has a very short biological half-life, meaning that it is metabolised and eliminated from our systems quickly. Therefore, taking a dose late or missing it altogether means that the side-effects of withdrawal are intense, and can come about quicker than expected.

Woman Wearing Black Jacket Beside Green Leaved Trees

One morning, I forgot to take Venlafaxine. It had completely slipped my mind, which is very unlike me. I went about my day fine, and it wasn’t until I began work in the evening that I realised that something wasn’t right. Every movement caused this whooshy sensation and dizziness, so even just looking to the side would cause everything to flip and spin. My coordination was a bit off too, as I kept dropping things, and also kept getting words all muddled up. It was scary, as I haven’t experienced this before. It wasn’t until much later that I realised that I had forgotten to take my medication.

To cut a long, embarrassing story short, I ended up having a panic attack and leaving work early. My managers and supervisor were so, so lovely. I felt so guilty about what I put them through, but they were so kind and understanding. I am so very grateful for them. I have had a couple of panic attacks at work, however each time I am amazed at how supportive my colleagues are. The next day I’m always a bit nervous about going back, about what people will think of me, but each time they treat me normally and the same as always, and that makes it so much easier.

It’s interesting how big of an influence Venlafaxine has on my body. Not only does it enable me to work on my recovery, rather than merely existing on the brink of survival, but also it simply has changed me. Venlafaxine has changed my life, for the better, and I am so thankful that I have access to this medication which I need.

In the moment, it’s easy to think that we haven’t changed at all, and that mental illnesses will always reign over us and have complete control. It is instances like this night at work that remind me that difficult things still happen, but I have the tools to handle them now. Recovery is all over the place, but that’s how it’s supposed to be. It changes us in the process. Are we all the better for it? Who knows. But one thing is for sure – it makes us strong.