Does Mental Illness Define Us?
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Health and Wellness

Does Mental Illness Define Us?

There's nobody out there who craves life more than those who don't want to want to die every day.

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Does Mental Illness Define Us?
Anthony Simon Harries Photography

"The field reveals to man his own folly and despair and victory is an illusion of philosophers and fools."

The great God of morbidity and despair etched this quote in my mind like I've been condemned to repeating the serenity prayer for eternity. Thanks a fucking bunch, Faulkner.

"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change," my f***ing asshole.

What if the things we must accept are unrelenting, terrifying realities that will haunt our every waking breath? What if accepting our fate meant accepting a lifelong struggle, a daily battle against our own selves, an 80-year war? Would you take that for a 1/4 of it in unforgettable smiles, belly-aching laughter, irreplaceable people, exploration of talents and passions, and a chance to exist in a beautifully heartbreaking world?

I can't answer that question myself.

Let's be real... mental illness is a godforsaken bitch. It's a reality that the weakest fail to understand and the strongest fight against. It's a gift and a curse. Would you take a beautiful mind for a heartbreaking puzzle of a life? I could only tell you that's a worthwhile reality if insanity didn't encroach on the work of these beautiful minds. It's like the hunger games of capability-- will you succumb to the power of crazy and leave all half-finished, wallowing in the depths of self-pity, or will you succumb and enlighten the greedy and pitiful with the power of crazy?

"The field reveals to man his own folly and despair and victory is an illusion of philosophers and fools."

The field refers to time. We cannot nor will not reign victorious over time. "Time is not on our side," the old saying goes.

To answer the question, "Does mental illness define us?" -- Yes, yes it does. It defines every goddamn step you take. It defines every breath you take. It defines every urge and every word that escapes your body. It defines how you live and how you must survive. It defines whether you combat its effects or crumble beneath them. It defines your ignorance and your acceptance. It defines whether you choose life or death. It defines how we love versus how we want to love. It defines how we live versus how we want to live. It defines what we feel versus what we want to feel.

Define: "state the nature of."

Define doesn't mean condemned. Define doesn't mean self-pity either. It simply means that our nature is measurable by a particular mental state; that our everyday lives are defined by a struggle to survive. Defined by mental illness means "strong" in my book. It means scrounging for every way you can find beauty in this life over misery. It means tearing at the seams of what it is to be mentally ill. It means defining life with meaning, with beauty, with pain, and most importantly with the will it instills in you-- the will to live. To live right. To live like nobody has ever lived before. There's so much desire in will--

So let mental illness define the fuck out of you... there's nobody out there who craves life more than those who don't want to want to die every day.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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