Fixing myself in a world that wants me to stay broken

Katianna Mansfield

More stories from Katianna Mansfield

I am okay now
February 16, 2018

My therapist tells me that in my new unhealthy mindset that my only goal right now should be to get better, to deliver my brain to happiness by any means necessary. Sleep as much as I can, eat as much as I can to get my appetite back, do the things that make me feel like I’m not alone and do them often. The world, however, wants me to stick to my responsibilities and keep trucking on like I’m still as strong as I once was.

This is simply not possible anymore.

Not to be confused with the idea that it’s not possible for me to handle as much as I used to. I am not permanently damaged; one day I will be back and better than ever. That day is not today, nor will it be around anytime soon, but it is on my calendar in the boldest invisible ink.

I will be okay someday.

I have had to learn not to listen to the people around me, to ignore what they say when they say it because they don’t understand. People listening to me will disagree; they’ll try to argue and tell me what I should be doing. Everyone thinks they have the right answer, but they don’t. I am the only person who knows what is good for me.

If I feel like I need to stay home, I’m going to. If I want to binge-watch something because I haven’t let myself even turn on my TV in months, I’m going to. If I need to skip an assignment and take the drop in my grade, I’m going to.

The things I need and want to make myself better, to not crave the world’s collapse, to wake up excited for my life, are significant. It is so important that I feel happy.

When other people look at me and think they know what’s best, it’s painful. These thoughts that they’re voicing have barraged me from every angle inside my mind for as long as I can remember, and they’re not telling me anything new. I have chained myself to my own whipping post, and I am my own punisher. Every new lash from others is just a terrible attack on old wounds. I have bled one thousand pints of blood of my own accord, I have flay scars across every inch of the open expanse of my skin, I have born pain like no other.

But the second that pain comes from someone other than myself, it’s different. It hurts; I get angry. I have punished myself enough; my mind has never given me a break from pushing harder and harder until I crack. Anyone who has the audacity to look me in the eye and say or send in a message, the things that are already on repeat in my brain. They don’t know me.

If someone really knew me, they would know how hard it has been for me to let myself have anything that resembling happiness in this world. They would know not to interfere with my trials and errors, as I learn what is best for me.

If you want me to be alive and well as a functioning member of society, you will step back and let me handle this on my own.

Support is all I need; advice and criticism about what I could be doing better or whether you agree or disagree with my actions doesn’t help anyone.

I will be okay someday.”

At the end of the day, I am the one who has to lead this life. In terms of who should be content with what I do in every relationship I have, it is me who is most important.

I am the one at the whipping post. I am the one with the power.

It is my job and mine only to figure out how to get out of my chains.