WHY AM I ALWAYS UP SO LATE...WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
“Bye, goodnight! I love you so much!”, she said.
“I love you, too. Are you sure you don’t want to talk?”, he said.
“Oh, yes. Absolutely! I’m fine, don’t worry about me.”
“Okay, call me if you need me. I’m here for you!”
After a short two-minute call, she switched off the internet on her phone, locked her screen, and went to bed. She curled up in her usual fetal position and covered herself in a black comforter. She imagined herself in her late mother’s womb drowning in those never-ending tears. Every night she made this safe space for herself. A space that she never shared with anyone except her mother before birth.
About an hour later, she straightened up, staring at the black ceiling. She stared and stared and stared and stared. Half an hour later, the last teardrop fell from her eyes. She asked herself, “Why am I always up so late? What now? What happens next? Is there something I should feel? Should I be feeling sad? I don’t feel anything, just a void, just an emptiness. I just feel like I am not on the right path, I am confused. Why did this happen to me? Why did she have to leave? My mom was beside me for 25 years, she understood me, she helped me get back on track, she gave me all the love and support I needed. She was my personal therapist. This is so unfair.”
She experienced similar thoughts daily, especially at night after shutting herself out from the rest of the world. With Covid-19, going out was a big ‘no-no’, all she was left behind with, was herself within four walls, a roommate, her boyfriend, some relatives, and other family members with whom she interacted so cheerfully as if nothing ever happened. The darkness of the night combined with a hint of loneliness and a touch of emptiness brought with it a plethora of negative emotions that hovered over her mind. She usually experienced a sense of helplessness and hopelessness, unable to share her true feelings with others. However, today was different. Today was different because soon after shedding her last tear, she sat up on her bed. She looked around. She looked around to find something that could comfort her. She reached out to a grey teddy bear on the corner of her grey bed. This was a gift from her mother, she held it close to her heart and stood up. She walked outside the door of her hostel room and practiced talking to her imaginary self, battling all the negative thoughts and emotions that kept interrupting her flow.
Finally, she said it. SHE SAID IT.
She acknowledged that her current experiences originated from the recent demise of her mother. She acknowledged that her past experiences had overcome her.
She ran back into the room, looked around for a piece of paper, and began writing her thoughts down. She wrote until the list of feelings and thoughts in her vocabulary was exhausted. She finally became aware of her thoughts and feelings. After staring at the long list, she started looking around for her phone. She began surfing the net to explore avenues from where she could seek help. However, after fifteen minutes of surfing, all she came across were inaccessible helpline numbers, complicated websites, and inappropriate tips. Soon after, she found a large number of mental health or self-help blogs from various national and international mental health professionals and organizations. She began reading them. Finally, she found a blog that resonated with her so much that she could visualize a white light at the end of a tunnel with hues of black and grey.
The sun rose and so did her spirit. She took out another sheet of paper and made a to-do list. On top of the list was buying a journal. She ran to a store at 10 AM and bought herself a beautiful purple diary. She began journaling and continued to do so for the next three months. Gradually, her mental instability and breakdowns were replaced by peace, growth, and acceptance. She called this her post-traumatic growth, something she had read about over these past three months. Now, three months later, she sleeps with her grey teddy bear under a white comforter, on a grey bed, and a white ceiling above her. She also intends to get in touch with a therapist and learn techniques to maintain her growth and mental health.
‘She’ can be any one of us. Her ‘late mother’ could be any other experience that negatively impacts an individual’s mental health. Acknowledgment, awareness, and acceptance can occur through various means. One may become more resilient from an experience; one may experience greater concerns after an experience. One may have the capacity to overcome struggles using self-help techniques; one may require constant support from family, friends, colleagues, or mental health professionals. One may enter a therapeutic relationship with a psychologist to relieve certain symptoms; one may enter to capitalize on strengths or maintain growth.
Every story is unique. Similarly, the solution for a hurdle in any story is unique. What must be kept in mind is our story is in our hands. Only we can start it, only we can decide how to move through it, and only we can decide how to keep it going. Finally, not everything is either black or white, there's a lot of scope for greys as well.
Nothing should stop you from reaching out for help! Don't hesitate to take a step towards your mental well-being. If you’re looking at talking to a professional, book your Initial Consultation with us on https://www.themoodspace.com/freeconsultation or write to us at
firstname.lastname@example.org. Take a step towards bettering your mental well-being because you deserve it!
Written by - Virachi Chaudhary