Category Archives: Mental Health

I’m Not Getting a Job.

I’m not getting a job so stop asking.

Ever since my mental health situation that caused me to leave my job (see #CarriesLifeMatters if you’re new), a relative keeps asking me (and my mother) if I’ve found a job yet… not about my mental health.. but if I’ve found a job. They are my elder so I cannot say “No nigga and I’m not looking for one.”

I did the right thing. I went to college and got a good job. It did not work. Sitting in a cubicle for 3 years was soul snatching. I’m not made to be an employee. I am a boss.

Corporate America meant constantly shrinking. Do you know how hard it is for a young black kid with locs to have to figure out how not to seem scary to white women from Kentucky? The shit’s impossible.

I had 2 corporate America jobs.

At the first job my boss (a black woman) called me into her cubicle and said, “I need you to not be the angry black woman.”

See, I had suggested to the group of white women that perhaps they’d get more work done if they’d quit watching and snitching on my team.

“What you said offended soandso…”

“I don’t care if they were offended.” I replied

“You’re intimidating.”

“I don’t care. My paycheck comes just the same.”

What is so funny is that I was a temp employee making BARELY minimum wage and they were salaried state employees and (at least) twice my age. Why you intimidated by me?!

At the next job, my boss (also a nigga black woman) told me that the way I sat in meetings was intimidating. I’m sitting, staring at a screen and taking notes. Intimidating. HOW SWAY?

I told her that if she was intimidated that perhaps it was her problem and not mine. NOT TO MENTION. She was a preacher that dressed like a sanctified street-walker. A size 24 not twenty four. TWENTY FO in a skin tight, thigh length red dress and 6 inch heels. Btch, I’m intimidated, hell.

She was so intimidated, she fired me and I pushed back and she had to hire me back because HR couldn’t even justify the reason. I shouldn’t have gone back but my petty ass wanted to walk back in there after that intimidated ho tried it.

I digress.

So No. I’m not looking for a job nor do I plan to.

Those 3 or 4 years in corporate America were damaging. Being nuts genetically on top of being told you’re making people feel uncomfortable for simply existing while you just trying to make some weed money nearly killed me.

Getting too sick to work was the best thing that could have happened to me.

Furthermore, my friends and peers have started to leave their jobs as well. It feels like a community of awakening. I have friends that are full time poets. My classmate from undergrad just opened up her own salon, another homegirl is currently on tour singing with Ledisi, my friends are boutique owners, musicians, graphic designers, promoters, fashion designers, make-up artists, massage therapists, personal trainers, dancers and doing it on their own terms.

People always ask me “so.. what do you do?”

My mother and I are starting our T-Shirt company and YouTube Channel.

I’m about to record my spoken word albums.

I’m a part of an up and coming record label. I’m developing rappers that are actually talking about something. We’re going on tour. We also sponsor a night of Non-Violence in our very violent city.

I work with my city’s chapter of #BlackLivesMatter

I’m teaching vocal instruction at a Girls Music Camp.

I’m raising money for a non-profit that has a vocational-entreprenuer school. (We don’t teach people how to work. We teach them to have careers.)

What do I do? My days off are Monday and Tuesday. I do yoga. I party on Wednesday night with my ratchet friends like its our birthday (they got $2 wells yall). I stay up until 2am writing music/poetry. I do whatever the hell I want to do. I’m broke nigga! and I moved back in with my mom but I’m happier than I was with a $34,000/year job. AND I will be back out of my momma house in my own bachelorette pad by the end of the year. Mark my words. You’ve got to speak those things… *BAPTIST FIT*

If you are not made to go to college or work in an office then don’t. If you ARE made to go to college and work in an office, then DO! I wasted time doing what I thought I was supposed to do. The women that influence me the most, my mom, my aunts a couple of my cousins ARE made to work in an office and/or be in academia. My aunt went to college and didn’t leave LOL. She got her phD and became a professor it was what she was made to do. I am not them. I never have to see another office or classroom.

I wasn’t doing what I was made to do. As a result I used food, alcohol and weed as crutches when I needed mental healthcare and am paying for it. I went to the doctor today. My blood pressure was 124/180 and my pulse was 124. They did an EKG on me. The doctors and nurses took my BP and pulse multiple times because of how high it was. I had to get blood work done. (If you know me, you know how I feel about getting blood drawn). Mentally/Emotionally I am better. Physically I have a long way to go. I’m not going to quit smoking weed doe. Idc. Idc. Idc. 

Do what you want to do. Life is too short. Don’t be afraid to be broke for awhile to have unlimited streams of income in the future. You have to sacrifice. You have to miss events, I had to stop getting pedicures and my eyebrows done (and I’m vain). I had to miss reggae fest. I haven’t bought clothes or shoes this year. I moved back in with my saved ass momma. But I am happy!

What are you made to do?

What is your calling?

What is your gift?

Go do it.

-CGW

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Lent Week Two: There’s No Future in Your Frontin’

Lent Week 2! What have a learnt? “There’s no future in your frontin.”

Frontin: Urban slang. To put up a facade or make appearances to maintain an inaccurate image of oneself “I know that I’m carrying on, nevermind if I’m showing off, I was just frontin'” – Pharelle

I feel like I should put a disclaimer on this. I’ve been sitting in front of my laptop looking at the screen thinking “How I’mma start THIS out?”

I love and appreciate the church I grew up in. That being said i am about to be very honest about some of my experiences. I love the church and everybody (well most of yall) just the same.  I know plenty of people reading are or have been members of this church. Church is a family and there are some cousins and uncles we can’t stand. Hell, i don’t too much like my daddy myself.

If you’re offended by this post, as a member of this church or any, pray about how you can make church easier on people.. and don’t come for my church or pastor. I’ll fight you. Well, probably not. I’m too pretty to fight. I will talk about ya momma though. I digress.

Bailey (my Volkswagen BLookUpDown gifeetle) is in the shop so mom and I have been sharing Condoleezza  (the other beetle). I haven’t been going to church with her, the church in which I grew up. (We live in different cities) I chalked it up to social anxiety but I realized it was something else as well. I decided to go last Sunday (2 Sundays ago by the time you’re reading) and immediately realized why I hadn’t been going. I got so many… looks.

The church I grew up in is very conservative. Women only in skirts conservative, no sleeveless shirts conservative. People wait for us to come out of church to see what we got on. Yall know how we dress for the Derby? That’s weekly.

I DID wear skirts and dresses for years but after ‘while it got uncomfortable. I just didn’t feel like me. I didn’t like the attention I got in a skirt (#thick) and who in hell wants to wear pantyhose EVER?! I used to take them off in the parking lot after service during the summer.

Also, I’ve since joined a church that was  less conservative (with teaching/preaching just as sound.. that’s important). I figured out I could go to church AND be me. I never thought that was possible.

I stayed home from church this past Sunday because I don’t want people to look at me funny for wearing pants.

It is so ignant its funny. No, literally I laughed after I typed that sentence.

Everybody wants to be accepted. It took a lot of rejection for me to realize this. (Well, not a LOT of rejection, look at me – sheeeeeeeeIT) I developed a strong exterior but rejection hurts just the same. I ain’t gon front, rejection hurts bad. 

The two rejections that hurt the most are from my father and from the church.

These rejections have happened over and over through out my life.  But you know what I realized after years of frontin? I’m just fine without them. By the grace of God, I am just fine. 

I have decided that I’m done trying to be accepted by anybody but especially by church niggas  folk and my pop. To hell with them, frankly. I prayed that I’d change, that God would change me to make me more acceptable so i could be more comfortable and Her only response was “I love you.”

fanny2.gif*Baptist Fit*

My goal should not be to be accepted by people that are sinners like me. I only need acceptance from One and he sent Jesus. –Quickens

After I understood what God did for my sin and what he continues to do in spite of my sin it was a teench harder to judge anybody especially for what the clothes they had on. I wholeheartedly understand why people don’t come to church. I just can’t let people keep me from Jesus. I ain’t going to stop going to church. Also, God doesn’t want you or I to be comfortable. But that’s a different subject for a different day.

It is difficult coming to the realization that the church you grew up in is not the church you are going to stay in. I thought I was going to get married and raise my kids there. I ain’t. Y’all know black people stay in church for dozens of generations in the same damn seat for a hundred years. I had to change churches in order to grow in my walk with Jesus. I had to change churches to be able to go every Sunday.

The lesson I’ve learned is that in order to heal you gave to deal. (Ooohh trademark that… sounded like Johnny Cochran.) You will not be able to move on or heal if you fronting about your hurt. You ain’t that tough. Trust me. I’m a professional fronter and I am nuts on paper. I was fronting about being hurt and why i was hurt. Yall know how much sleep I lost? I was up at 3am bothered and didn’t know why.kellyanne

Be honest with yourself. Keep it 100. It will help your skin. Look at KellyAnne Conway. She lies for a living and looks hung up to dry. Lying on top of the way some white women age? I digress.

Some things only come by fasting and prayer (Matthew 17:21). Lent has been a blessing. High-5 your neighbor and tell em “There’s no future in your fronting.” 

Thank you so much for reading and sharing. I never think people I know are reading until they let me know. So leave me a comment or message, dag!

Sola Gratia

-Carrie

 

 

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Lent Commentary Week 1: Sitting like KellyAnne Conway

Peace, yall. Welcome new followers! Thank you for following! Follow me on twitter and snap at @andcarrieon7 and like my Facebook page CarrieAmanda.

During Lent I’ll post every Wednesday, lets get into it.

I won’t assume everybody knows what Lent is so here’s a brief description. Lent is the 40 days before Easter. It symbolizes Jesus’ 40 day withdrawal into the wilderness.

The purpose of lent for the Christian is self-denial in preparation of the celebration of Christ’s death, burial and resurrection which is Easter.

It’s not just a Catholic holiday as many believe. Many Christian denominations observe lent; Normally by giving up or fasting from something. Use your Googles for more info. This ain’t Wikipedia.

I haven’t observed lent in a few years. It always sneaks up on me and I’ve been too lazy to give up something. It takes effort.

I gave up Facebook, am doing the #BathroomBreakChallenge (word to my friend Imani at christiancontrolfreak.com) and a Lent Bible reading plan. It has already been very rewarding.

Hindsight is 2020 right? I’ve learned that I was relying too much on my job/money, my material possessions, social status/friends and not God. Idol gods aren’t just golden statues. God will take all that away to get your attention. I left my job (money and insurance), lost some people my damn car broke down, and I’m nuts.

God Got me leaning on the everlasting arms, honey. It may not feel like I have much but this Peace I have outweighs all of that.

Since I’m not on Facebook, i get most of my news a little later when I sit down and look so heres my commentary on notable news:

kellyanne, girlKellyAnne was sitting on that couch like a child with no home training. You know how a
little girl isnt used to wearing a dress and you have to tell her “put ya legs down baby”. I had the urge to tell KellyAnne that but she’s a whole entire adult. There ain’t but a FEW reasons to have your leg open this far and this was not one of those occasions.

Ben Carson is another whole entire adult that has life wrong. I am still waiting on Ashton Kutcher to come out on the country and tell us we’re punked. This nigga is a brain surgeon that said the ancestors were “immigrants” that came over on slave ships. If they were immigrants WHY WERE THEY CALLED SLAVE SHIPS. The leader of HUD, yall. Has he ever seen Roots?!? I didn’t know brain surgeons could be THIS stupid. Maybe he’s in the sunken place, him and Kanye. Can we go get them or..? The bar has been lowered tremendously for all things. Now is the time to pursue whatever you want. I’m trying out for the NFL.

Third and final commentary. Yall want Ciara to be miserable so bad. If Ciara had stayed ciarawith Future, was raising Baby Future by herself, getting cheated on, singing sad ass songs and miserable, nobody would have anything to say. She released this gorgeous maternity photo and black ashy twitter is up in arms. Yall mad at Ciara for having the nerve to move on and marry a man that loves her and her son instead of being mad at Future who is nowhere to be found. A miserable black woman is so normal to us, we’re offended when she is happy.

If you don’t want another man in your son’s life, BE THE MAN IN YOUR SONS LIFE, NIGGA. Keep on prospering Ciara. Keep right the hell on.

me daddy mommaI’m so passionate about Ciara because look at this photo to the left. That is baby Carrie. The man holding baby Carrie is not my biological father. But he is my daddy. He married my mom when I was that age and raised me as his own. My biological father still ain’t interested in being a parent. It’s too late anyhow. So F you and your couch if you’re mad at Ciara. She isn’t the one in the wrong.

Note: I know it looks like that’s my brother holding me. LOL The resemblance is uncanny. He wasn’t even born yet. Ah the days of being an only child.

Ok, I think that’s all I got to say. I never know how to end these things.

Till next Wednesday. Bless your heart and all your parts.

– CAGW

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3: An update on #CarriesLifeMatters

#CarriesLifeMatters is the name for my experiences with having anxiety and depression. Check the first one and second. I’m back with the jumpoff.

*Sigh* being this transparent is hard. I’m not good at discussing my feelings. But you all have such kind words for me and I know that it is God’s plan that I share my struggles with mental health. I hope that what I say helps somebody.

I’m better. I’m still living at my mom’s most of the time but I get to Louisville and putting my big toe in the water on living alone again. I’m not ready to live on my own yet.

I’m not ready because when I do struggle with my anxiety, it’s bad. My anxiety is starting to make me physically sick and when I’m in ‘recovery’ I’m exhausted, dizzy, and get the shakes. I had an episode last Saturday night/Sunday morning. Today (Monday, which is last Monday at the time), I slept the whole day. I tried to wake up but my body/mind wasn’t having it.

The shakes are something that have just happened recently. My hands are shaky after bad anxiety. I just spilled sugar all in my momma’s kitchen when making cereal (Don’t tell her).  Because of my episode I was ready to come home Sunday but was too tired to drive. That’s when I realized I’m not ready to be on my own….. YET.

tom-and-jerryAnother issue is I hold alot of my feelings in. I’m doing better because I made a commitment to write about my feelings often. But old habits die hard, I still bottle things up; The bottle gets full and I explode. I have trained myself to hold things in because I internalized the idea that showing emotions and being vulnerable was weak. I don’t wanna look weak. Plus, I don’t think I was ever taught how to express my emotions. I try to put it all in the music these days. I’m writing a lot of lyrics and picked up the guitar picking keys back up soon.

I internalized the idea that there was no room for progress when emotions are involved. It made me a bad leader when it came to working with people when I did events. I had a very ‘F your feelings’ attitude and I lost people because of it. I had enemies when I had my corporate jobs. I didn’t consider people’s feelings. We getting the work done or nah? I straight up said in a meeting once, “Yall aren’t my friends. I don’t care how you feel.”

Feelings do matter. Emotions don’t make you weak. They make you human. This is my current mantra because I still have trouble believing that emotions are ok in my heart.

Lastly, I feel disconnected socially. God has shown me that this is a season of working on Carrie. He’s taken away some people. I think because I relied too much on them. I don’t have beef with anyone but some friendships just tend to fade away and I tend to be less tolerant of people and their antics. Ever since I eliminated my own father from my life. I’m not tolerating anybody’s foolery. It doesn’t feel good. I miss a few people. I feel like an outcast at times but I do understand that this is just a season and God must have some amazing people in store for me next season.

I’m giving up Facebook for personal use for lent. I think I decided around Valentine’s Day. It soooo messed me up. All those couples and carrying on while I’m single just… disgusted me. That sounds horrible, I know. I’m not bitter per se. I WANT to be single and I think monogamy is something I ain’t gonna master (I like 2 or 3, sue me) but this world can be very couple centered and be having me think something is wrong with me.

kait1It seems like everyone my age is getting married/having babies and my biggest concern is finding a lighter. (Ain’t nothing worse than rolling up only to find out a lighter ain’t around!) My brother having a baby (pictured to your left) did not help my feelings at all. If someone likes his ole raggedy ass enough surely I can get chose. (Joking)

Again, thank you all soooooo much for your support of my blog. The conversations that grow from these seeds save me. I wish I could properly express my gratitude.

Lent Week 1 Coming Wednesday ❤

-CGW

 

 

Don’t wait your turn!

We’ve already established that my Facebook (henceforth FB) News feed gives me the MOST. Part of my self care is ‘unplugging’ especially from FB.

I have a homegirl who checks in on me ever so often. I told her this morning I was super anxious. She said “maybe unplug from FB for today”. That’s EXACTLY what I needed to do.

The FB commentary issues that have got under my eyelashes lately are Karrueche and Chris Brown, the bathroom bill (and many other bills Jesus), immigration and how I’m not ‘woke’ cause I’m Christian.

I have learned valuable lessons in FB debates. It’s usually best to keep right on scrolling. Thoughtful conversation usually happens sans audience and one or one. Anytime we broadcast something, it’s to get a reaction and to show off for our friends. Which is in why my view FB debates go south FAST. I usually want to be real petty by the 3rd exchange and I’m trying to do better so I usually just skip them all together. auntie-max

The second lesson is that a good number of people are not smart or open minded enough to debate with. For example, in order to talk about rights for LGBTQ people, you must understand, sexual preference, gender as a social construct and biology. Lots of people don’t.

For us cisgender folk, being transgender may be a hard concept to grasp (use your Googles) but it shouldn’t be hard to grasp that they are people just like us. I’m more disgusted than surprised that we are having a conversation about public restrooms.

Its hilarious to me that niggas black people scoff at any legislation regarding public accommodations. Ask your granny if she could just go to any bathroom.

AND AND AND Transphobia behind ‘protecting our women’ is disingenuous. The POTUS bragged about grabbing women buy the pussy… The President. Of the United States. Some of our legislatures are trying to defund Planned Parenthood and PP isn’t even funded federally. The government could do a much better job of protecting women. The bathroom bill AIN’T one of ’em.

Lets talk about Chris Brown ole creepy ass for a minute. It doesn’t take much to surprise me but I AM surprised that yall need receipts on Chris’ crazy when we already have them.

I posted the story and people’s comments:

“I need to see pictures.”

“Why is she just now saying something?”

“She’s just doing it for attention.”

AND MOSTLY from WOMEN!

rhianna-faceMeanwhile I’m serving Maxine Waters face. This the same guy that had Rhianna’s face swollen and bloody. Why can’t we believe Karruche? Why are we defending someone we KNOW needs therapy? Cause we enjoy his music? You go on a date with Chris Brown, sis.

These issues don’t necessarily hit home for me. I’ve never been abused by a romantic partner nor have I ever thought about which bathroom to use for my safety. But they still get to me emotionally.

I’m so frustrated that its such a struggle for people to see other people as human that deserve the rights they enjoy. It scares me because I’m very other and I need someone in privilege to see me as human sometimes and I know they don’t have to.

American culture is very much to blame I think. We have plenty of laws on the books that remind the majority that minorities are people too. Also, i think we try to give ourselves moral permission to treat people bad when we “other” them.

Immigration is a good example. You can’t say you don’t want them here because they’re brown (that’s what it REALLY is). That’s too direct. You gotta straight up make shit up. They are terrorist or innately more criminal. So i don’t have to welcome them into the country, so I don’t have to treat them as people. So I CAN treat them badly. Example below:

I’ve been waiting to use this hilarious clip. They was pissed. LOL

But seriously I know what its like to be othered and it doesn’t feel good, it’s scary. That’s why I don’t want to do it to anyone else. I also believe we have a duty to stand up for people. Its way too late to wait your turn. Errrbody is in danger, girl. I have friends that are undocumented, transgender people in my family, I’m a black millennial. I just can’t afford to wait my turn. We gotta fight unjustice for ANYONE because we are ALL image bearers of God.

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me. – Martin Niemöller-CGW

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It doesn’t always feel good.

Obeying God, doing the right thing, doing what’s needed does not always feel good.

A few examples

Bishop Eddie Long passed. As a victim of sexual abuse, I will probably (want to) do the Harlem Shake and running man on the grave of my abuser. But how I feel about my abuser doesn’t matter because neither Heaven or Hell, me or him belong to me. What if I told you that Bishop Eddie Long was in Heaven? Speaking about a believer’s sin after they pass gives the power to the sin and not to Jesus. I feel like I’m defending Bishop Long and it does not FEEL good. Obeying God, being a Christian, Evangelizing… doesn’t always feel good. A believer goes to Heaven. Period. It says WHOSOEVER BELIEVES in my Bible… not whosoever acts right.

Next example, I feel lonely. (I can’t believe I’m sharing this with yall.) I feel isolated from my friends and family. I’m an introvert but I’m bit of a social butterfly at times. For whatever reason I cannot get anybody closer than arm’s length right now.. All I keep hearing is ‘focus on yourself’ when I pray. Working on Carrie is the best thing to do right now but it does not FEEL GOOD!

Third example, I decided to not give my biological father the opportunity to disappoint me any further. He does not have the heart to be a parent and I don’t chase grown ass people. He has me (and my mom) blocked on Facebook (lol) and he didn’t get my new number when I changed it recently. That doesn’t just not feel good. It feels horrible. The dude that made me doesn’t want to parent me? It’s so tragic its funny. (More on that later, that’s a good story)

Final example, I left my corporate job. I did the right thing. I went to school, got a degree (BARELY) and a nice job.. and that did not feel good. I was very unhappy.  I had a mental breakdown as a result of doing what I THOUGHT was right. After I left my job, I lost my insurance and of course that paycheck. I was broke and could not afford the care I needed (still can’t).

But in the midst of doing what was right and not what felt good I found peace. I felt better the MINUTE I made the decision I wasn’t going back to that job. I realized that I should not be sitting at a desk working for somebody. I am an artist. I’m a hustler. In the midst of this revelation, my mom and I started a T-Shirt Company: HunnTees. I started driving for Postmates and have a few more projects in the works. I am broke (for now). I have no insurance (for now) but I am at peace. I am not miserable. I haven’t been able to say that since July.

So, my advice to you is that I know it doesn’t feel good. But keep going because it does not stay that way. Doing what is hard builds character and perseverance. There’s no getting better without suffering. Count it joy! #ThatsBible

-Carrie

 

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I would like to front for yall. I’d like to tell you I have it all together, that I’m healthy and not broke. I’d like to tell you that I know what I am doing and what I want to do in life.

I can’t.

I’m stressed. My skin looks bad and my hair is thinning. My cycle is irregular and I ain’t got an appetite. I am not myself. I’m super sensitive. I’ve had 2 bad anxiety attacks in the past two days (at the time I’m writing). My father has me blocked on facebook and I didn’t hear from him on my birthday. I’m fighting mad at him. I’m broke. I was sick on my birthday. I am grieving. I don’t enjoy the holidays. Seasonal depression. Crazy dreams. Donald Trump is the President-Elect. So, I’m not ok.

BUT.

I’m still here. (Runs around sanctuary)

There comes a time when you have to get honest and make a decision. I WANT to give up. But, I’m still breathing. I still wake up every morning and that means it aint over.

fb_img_1481767149017I got this damn semi colon tattooed on my hand.

I was inspired by project semicolon. Check them out.

Yall know I’m a grammar/spelling snob. Punctuation is useful. A semicolon separates two independent clauses; I like to think of it as more than a comma and less than a period.

The semicolon project brings awareness to people who have struggled with mental illness, for people who have struggled with self-harm and suicidal thoughts. The idea is that if we are the author of our lives, a semicolon goes after that struggle, not a period (oooh, i almost shouted. The Holy Ghost almost threw me off of this couch).

I am at the point right before the semicolon. I’ve learned that God will keep you in the storm until you learn your lesson. I am hardheaded and oblivious. It took a year almost to learn why I was struggling. So what did I learn?

I learned that I am not invincible.

I learned that I need people. I need friends and family that will listen or just sit with me until I’m ready to talk. I need friends that will go off on me if I’m not taking my medicine.

I learned that I must struggle (financially, physically, mentally) in order to help people who are struggling. Hebrews 4: 15 says “… we do not have a high priest (Jesus) who is unable to sympathize with our weakness, but one… who was tempted.. yet did not sin” Our greatest help went through what we go through in order to identify with us and intercede for us. I ain’t Jesus by a long shot. I certainly need a lesson or two in sympathizing. I feel a calling to help people. I believe good help comes from those who can identify with those in need.

I read 2 Corinthians today. Paul and the thorn. I wonder what Paul’s thorn was. I have my theories. My thorn (one of them) is my mental health. God didn’t take away the thorn even after Paul asked 3 times. But he did give Paul grace to deal with it. How would we know the power of God if we had the power? God’s power is made perfect in our weakness (v. 9) so we can boast about our weakness because that is when God sees us.

Thus are my birthday reflections. Thank you so much for your support.

– CAGW

 

 

#CarriesLifeMatters

Britney shaved Yall remember when Britney Spears had a break down of sorts and cut her hair off in 2007? Thats what I’m coming out of. Maybe it was a quarter life crisis. Maybe I called in black for a couple weeks. I still have my hair but I wasn’t at work from July 6th-July 25th. #Imbackbitches

No seriously, my depression and anxiety took me to a place where I was unable to function. I was in the bed MOST of the time. I was working and sleeping and working and sleeping. Rinse. Repeat. I was existing, not living. I stopped going to church. I didn’t have the social energy church required. I didn’t have any social energy or any motivation to DO anything.

What’s important to know about depression is that you may not necessarily feel sad. For me, it’s more of feeling just absent which may or may not make me feel sad. I was absent for months and did not realize it.

I also have anxiety attacks that were becoming more frequent and making it hard for me to sit down at my desk at work for long periods of time. I was also making lots of mistakes on my work.
I haven’t been myself this year. I got fired in January. I THOUGHT I bounced back (because them bitches had to hire me back) but I had not bounced back. I hadnt healed from a very traumatic experience that hurt. Getting fired sucks and I should have taken the time to deal with it. All I did was fight for my job back and go right back into the situation that was harming me.

Looking back there was no reason for me to be mentally healthy. I was fired in January and hired back a month later under the same supervisor that obviously didn’t want me there. I had to work under someone i wanted to punch in the face for months; no wonder i lost it. Also, my medicines had not been adjusted in YEARS.

I went to my hometown for the 4th of July weekend Its always a festive time because all my family is in town and it’s my mom’s birthday on the 6th. I did not have a good time. Again, I stayed in bed most of the time with no social energy. I WANTED to have a good time with my family but it was like I couldn’t. Depression on top of anxiety and a constant headache.

On July 5th when I went back to work after the holiday wknd. I was too anxious to sit at my desk and do my job and thought to myself “I can’t do this.” I told my mom, my therapist and a few trusted friends that I need to go get treatment for my depression TODAY.

I made arrangements to take a leave of absence for work. I told my boss. She prayed for me (laid hands everything and chile) which is funny because she’s a big part of the reason I was so sick. Ho.

Anyway, that day after work my friend “Isabella” came, got me and took me to the hospital to get me an assessment.  I would not have gone without her. I came home that day after work and got in the bed with plans to go the next morning.

Chiiiiile, I had to wait 4 hours to see a clinician. I would have gone home after 20 minutes. I’m so glad Isabella was with me cause I don’t like waiting on a good day and that was a bad day, honey.

I wish I had time to tell you all about the people that I had to wait with. It probably isn’t a good idea to have a bunch of anxious ass people in a quiet ass waiting room (and my phone was dead!!!!!).
I finally got to see a clinician and she asked a bunch of questions and decided that “Intensive Outpatient Therapy (or IOP)” was good for me. I didn’t need to be admitted because I didn’t want to hurt myself or anyone else.
IOP was a group therapy setting Mon-Fri from 9am-12pm. I would also have access to a psychiatrist.
In short, group therapy did not work for me. The room was too bright, no windows, the chairs were uncomfortable and I had nothing in common with the people in group nor was I interested in their problems.
When we would first come in the morning we would do ‘mindful meditation’. We’d sit there and stare for a few minutes. Again, did not work for me. I had to sing a song (usually a hymn) in my head and rock back and forth to not have an anxiety attack.
We would go around and do ‘check-ins’ where we would talk about how we were feeling. On one of my check-ins I needed to talk about how frightened I was that Donald Trump would become POTUS and the therapist stopped me because we couldn’t discuss politics. That was the day I decided I was over ‘group’. If I can’t talk about politics or white people, the sht ain’t therapeutic.
In the mean time, I had seen the resident psychiatrist and he had adjusted my medicine. I was feeling better. I had more (social/mental/emotional) energy. The downside is the medicine has become more expensive but feeling better is worth it.
I told them I needed my walking papers and was going back to work. I have learned that it is important in this broken healthcare system to decide what you are going to do because often times providers are more concerned about money (especially those with mostly medicare/medicaid patients) than your care and aren’t going to necessarily do what is best for you. Them people would have had me in group therapy miserable for as long as my insurance would cover it.
Don’t get me started on insurance, Jesus.
OH! and in the middle of all that I got food poisoning! On Tuesday or Wednesday of group I woke up feeling very anxious but went to group anyway cause therapy is supposed to help right? I’m not going to give yall any details but I ended up going home early from group and was very sick for the rest of the day. I thought I was a goner, yall. I was writing my obituary in my head. I’m dramatic. I THINK I got food poisoning from Papa Johns because that’s what I had to eat the night before.
Thank God for Jehova-Rapha, I don’t look like what I been through.
My mother named this #CarriesLifeMatters probably because I stress myself about the happenings in the world and my vessel was empty so I was useless to the movement. I haven’t been able to do any activism work locally for a long time. I will be back soon though.
There were a few things I had to do and a few decisions I had to make when it came to getting better. One decision was that I was going to stop trying to convince white people and men of racism and patriarchy. I cannot wake everybody up. It isn’t my job and it is stressful because stupid people tend to do that. I’m no longer going back and forth on my social media posts. If you don’t get it, I’m sending you on your merry way. My people are getting killed. I have to use my energy to fix this thing.
I also have to make sure that my physical spaces (namely my bedroom and car) are not cluttered. Lack of motivation comes with depression and I wasn’t motivated to clean my space it really made my anxiety worse.
The adjustment in my medication almost instantly helped my energy and my sleep schedule. Once that I’m used to it (and ain’t broke no more). I’m hopping back on this get healthy train. I am the heaviest I’ve ever been. It’s 100 degrees outside. The devil is a liar. I could not get physically healthy because I was not mentally/emotionally healthy. Knowing is half the battle. I’ll post the #CarrieShrinks plan next week.
Thank you so much to everyone who has sent me a message of encouragement and or prayed for me. I needed it more than you know. Hope I can catch you all individually.
I’m STILL HERE.
-CGW
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