It’s been a while since I’ve had a blog. Through high school and college I used LiveJournal but stopped about 5 years ago. My therapist has suggested I take up writing a blog not only to help me, but to possibly help others who are going through the same things that I am.
So who am I? That’s a tricky question. Depending on the day, the hour, or the minute, I may be someone completely different than I just previously was. I suffer from mixed bipolar disorder, severe depression, ADHD, and generalized anxiety disorder. I take 10 pills a day. One second I’m crying uncontrollably, the next minute I’m punching a hole through the wall. Then I’m doing both at the same time. I have no recollection of the last time my life was in control, or if it ever was. This weekend will be 11 months sober, which is following 7 years of self-destructive heavy duty alcoholism. The sad part is I’m only 27. From 19-26, I don’t remember much of my life, but I know it was not in control.
There are so many components to one’s identity and so many words that can be used to describe myself. What else… I am gay, and that is an important aspect of my life. I am also transgender, in which I was born female and began to medically transition to male at the age of 22, although my first memories of knowing something was *not right* was around the age of 4. I was born and raised in New Jersey, and came to Pennsylvania for college and decided to stay in the Philadelphia area. I have always been a city boy.
I am a musician – I play many instruments. It is hard for me to concentrate on reading, but if given the right book, usually memoirs or biographies about people with mental illness or substance abuse problems, I can read for hours. In fact, I just finished a great booked called “In This Way I Was Saved” by Brian DeLeeuw. The book is told from the perspective of a persona created by a young man with schizophrenia. I can relate to other people with mental illness, and reading books on the topic gives me comfort. I need to know that I am not alone in my journey. I also need to see that people come out victoriously in their battle against mental illness. This past year has been incredibly challenging for me, and there are many, many days where I can honestly say I am surprised I am still alive. There is something internally keeping me going and telling me to stay alive, and while I don’t know what it is, I know one day I will be grateful for it.
So, there we go, a brief introduction. I hope that this blog can be of use for someone and as I continue to write, provide a glimmer of hope that other people are out there struggling and we are not alone in our journeys.