This past week, I’ve been feeling irritable. It’s that agitated somatic state that could just as easily give way to rage as it could to tears. I had a panic attack over the weekend and those always leave me feeling shaky and disoriented. And while I’m getting better at naming what’s happening in the moment and channeling that energy to minimize harm to myself, I can’t process what’s triggered me until after I’ve reconnected to my body.
The thing that set me off this time was a financial boundary that had been crossed. And it was so much more than that because money is never just about money. I knew that I was feeling the added pressure of getting down to my last dollar and still needing more time to complete the main creative project I’m working on. What I did not realize was the larger stress I was feeling in relation to my desire for freedom being compromised.
When I moved home just after my 30th birthday, I felt squirrely about returning to a place that I remember as suffocating and painful. Still, I was determined to make it work so I could finally pay off the debt that had been weighing on me for far too long. On top of that, living with family would allow me to build out my creative practice in ways that I was unable to do when all my money and time was going towards simply surviving.
In the beginning, things went better than expected. I finished up my certification as an Integral Master Coach™ and was introduced to Room Project’s amazing community of writers and artists. I eventually quit freelance writing to focus on building out my coaching practice. Puppets came back into my life and I met my creative soul twin. Paying off my debt went on the back burner while I focused on healing some creative trauma.
Then one of my siblings, who refuses to seek help for addiction, moved home for the umpteenth time and the stable life I’d been building for myself was suddenly under threat. Before then, I didn’t mind that I had very little financial wiggle room because all my savings and income were going towards building my first online class. After that change, however, my living situation began to feel claustrophobic and the inevitable drama felt inescapable.
As someone who deals with ongoing mental health issues, stability is essential to my wellbeing. Anything that compromises that I can’t afford to engage with; I do a fine job of disrupting my own world by myself. And while I am no stranger to helping others through struggle, I am also not a martyr. This situation is beyond my abilities and now I need to figure out how I can take care of my mental health and get out.
I am angry that I don’t have the money to leave today and I am scared that I’ll have to abandon creating my online course when it’s so close to being done in order to make some fast cash as a writer. Mostly, I feel foolish for thinking that I could trust home to finally be a stable place. I am lucky to have the option to live at home as an adult and it still hurts. It’s a both/and situation. However, if nothing else, it’s reminded me that I really need to find a therapist to talk to.
So, what do you need to do for your mental health right now?