Anyone recovering from trauma will know: healing is ugly. If you are reading this, that means you survived the trek through almost crazy. Or at the very least, you haven’t died trying yet. Good work. These mind malices don’t require permanence to tick or exist. No one remains in a perpetual state of (almost) crazy. It meanders intermittently: wild solar flares in the sun-of-self pulsing in the black-tar chaos heat-fatigued and miraged. When you least expect or want it, your wind-torn mind will fail you tragically; the world beside you falling shadowed by the manic cliffs of time’s regret. Always remembering that childhood tune:

Ashes to ashes we all fall down…

On the way back up? Evading rock bottom (just barely) gasping for air? Clawing for the top white knuckles bloodied? It’s important to keep perspective when managing the relativity of the self, especially when falling. Healing in mental health emulates failure, even hiding it entirely. Noticing the difference is the first step to allowing it.

The wins in mental health are as slippery as the failures:

Would you notice your newly healed thumb while shattered inside a body cast? A hangnail amidst a missing limb? A pinky toe amongst a tortured torso? Probably not. But in mental health you have to. Attention needs forever paid to these small successes, else behemoth failures swallow microscopic lives alive.

If you are trying to repair a catastrophically broken person, note the grains of healing still grate with failure. Fraught with fever and pitched romantic: Imagine congratulating bank robbers for a murder-heist one less dead than before; Or celebrating the Oakland A’s almost winning, now just another close call sans cigars. Trying to say thank you, when all you really feel is “I’m sorry”.

Force the awareness else the gravity of failure just drags you down. Ashes to ashes we all fall down.

The minds diamonds hide behind the rough.

The remedy is as blunt as the simile is generic: dig deep to find those small successes. Tally them up beside the rest in a journal called “I can”. Always compare today to before, then count your net wins like a bookie breaking legs. Learn from the positivity in losses, the value of failure is only as potent as its cause. Graph that bitch, then elevator pitch it like a bankrupt boss with nothing left to lose.

Point out to everyone involved the mice-like achievements bleeding through your taloned grip. Celebrate together any forward momentum, quietly without outward pride. Perfection is not the point, it’s achieving forever growth and compassion despite. Mental health is already failure. Fixing it becomes a nonlinear meander through a timeless fog we all lose. Poor boy lost, you must be tired so defeated once again.

You can lose the battle but still fight the war.

Behind every one almost crazy mad… is a loved one tired asking “why?”. The heaviness of these broken hearts bleed soft, like sun-kissed lavender beside a crooked stream, never yours alone to weep. Help them understand the pain you share without the burden of forgiveness. Hug them, sparing them the demand of hope. There is no champagne at this finish line, Boy… you will cross it all alone.

Normalcy of the mind is victory burned into baseline existence: the expectation is not failing. Celebrate accordingly. Else you just look odd dancing in the corner all alone; a misfit madman itchy with a fevered grin.

Shaking your way through Christmas dinner? Anxious over eggnog in-law small talk? Wandering that emotional social crease angry and confused all alone? White knuckles flocking dinner time vibes? Hang in there, Champ: The trajectory is trending up.

Ahh but the irony is in the trekkers dilemma (aka Atlas’ dilemma): Taking weight off the madman pack while actively climbing still grows exponentially heavier and harder with time, never easier. Increasingly less requires significantly more, and the cumulative effect of human failure builds up against your overflowing cup like salt in once fertile soil… Fertile Crescent combined with that sneaky constant called: time.

Atlas shrugged = Atlas falling.

The weight becomes exponentially more burdensome to the system of self through accumulation alone. This system is your human body struggling to keep up (coming soon: Losing weight on 4200 calories per day manic). Your loved ones strain one day further tired. One day heavier. As anyone almost crazy drifts closer toward those sharks below that splintered plank. Needling poked and pulled, prodded like a slaughter hog out of time. Crimson red stark against that bright blue hue, splashed eternally useless. Another rogue wave washed away.

Help them see the growth beneath the pain.

Thanking your loved ones for putting up will help everyone involved with your almost crazy life. Help them see the growth beneath the pain. In the corner they may perch, worried like a bird beaks might break. Timidly pecking your emotional rice, worried we could all pop mid rainy flight. The vulnerability in love is tragic, adorned only by the tenacity of its pain.

Celebrating the success of failure…

Celebrating the success of failure is a tricky human feat fighting second nature. But in mental health, it’s exactly this that sustainability and survival needs. Else you risk perpetual accumulation of negativity: a deadly emotional eutrophication of self.

Healing is ugly and always non-linear, hug anyone willing to stick around while you flail. Including yourself and any partner by your side crying “please love me”.

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