In the Spotlight: Corrin F
When things are good, they’re really good. My ‘To Do’ list is done with ease, leaving spare time for all my daily self-care needs and some; the creativity flows, I love to call up my friends and make tons of big plans. I enjoy it while it lasts, because I know that tomorrow, maybe next week, perhaps next month it will all come to an abrupt halt.
When it began, my mom had a hard time keeping up with my mood swings and just could not wrap her head around my behaviour. The way I could go my whole day, with my outgoing and cheery personality, to a meltdown locked in my room, smile not to be seen for another few days. All it took was one “wrong” direction that my mind didn’t agree with to send me over the edge and down my dark hole.
After an incident that landed an agitatedly confused teenage me in the hospital, it was about time to look for help - mainly, countless trials with a variety of anti-depressive and anxiety medications. These efforts made little effect and no one knew exactly what we were supposed to be doing. My family didn’t even know how to relate to me, let alone how to help.
As I approached my 20s, I was exhausted with all the ups and downs. It was difficult to hold reliable relationships with anyone and workplaces. Do you tell someone you are unwell or let them find out for themselves? - introducing myself with “Hello potential new friend, before we proceed, how do you handle the unpredictable?”. Even with those who did get to know me, it still made for difficult recovery from cancelled plans, ghosted messages and unpredictable downhill spirals. No one ever knew what to do when I went from 0 -10; Rightfully, shocked at how it came about or even possible for their bubbly friend to do this drastic 180.
Feeling defeated by what I viewed as a lack of control, I craved to experience something that felt like a normal life. At this point, I wanted nothing to do with the diagnoses and medications that once was the solution, now weighing me down. I really did try to make all the traditional methods work: be regular with your doctor, take your meds, exercise, have a routine, talk about your feelings. The thing is, these only worked when I was feeling good. What was I supposed to do when I wasn’t?
Since the modern medical approach wasn’t working for me, I figured to turn to the complete other side of health: Holistic health. I dove into books, buying rocks and scented oils with claimed “healing properties”, changing my gym membership for yoga, and the hardest one… meditation. You always hear “Meditate it’s good for you”; well they aren’t wrong. After numerous frustrating hours of fighting off my thoughts over many months, I found awareness in stillness.
Now, I’m 24 - 4 years into my practice. It is a practice and always will be a practice. Mindfulness living is a continual learning of deepening your awareness of surroundings and the internal state of being in any given moment. I still have hectic highs and depressive lows, but now I can recognize it happening and take the steps to soften the crash and pull myself out of the rubbish.