I gentley pick up the rest of what my depression has left of my body off my bedroom floor and tuck her into bed, I’ve been writing in code as long as I can remember for those who know the conversation, for those who are blessed with a mind that doesn’t know how to quieten down for themselves but for others, we know so well how the body likes to talk in cryptic behaviour, to see who is worth it, this is a silent prayer to the rain and to beloved kin, there are no words when I mumble these two loves, depression’s favourite 5 letter word each time, sorry, I’m the fire child with rain tendencies scared hiding from giving voice the things that still make me feel like I could sleep forever, how else are we allowed to communicate when we get lost in our body this way, when I find the fewer words to confront kin it becomes more than a one way conversation, in my mind I say, when I give up my pride to talk about a healing state I mean I am also giving me time, when I breathe in and out this way I am learning what it means to be myself and not my illness, when I lose touch of the the world around me and people it means I am in desperate need of myself so I will disappear into my own galaxy, sorry, I am learning not to apologise for my healing sorry, when I come back to you, I will not want to relive the trouma, in advance I want you to know, I am here, I see you, I am healing, self has been in need of my three super powers and you’re my last destiny.
I had someone who asked me to bare my truth for them in the south, so I read them my poetry, they listened, looked at me and asked why my words feel so sad, I could cry the amount of fight I give my narrative isn’t always this depressing I proclaim my innocence feeling my voice disappear at the very pit of my throat how was I meant to tell a starnger these kinds of truths are hidden meanings of how I survive, I’ve always been scared away from bad first impressions and how we first show love physically, my kin tell me biography of love, I tell them, this is exactly how it should be held and we fall in love all over again, see, when the heart is loved backwords it catches up clearly to the mind, gestrures and glances are not so overseen as heartbeats may think, we women of both rain and fire are a parade of intuition you will attempt to ghost wrongs can’t help put in check the smoke that has been done, cupid can have this cloute too, we women are blessed with sight that could split you two even halfs of each attempt you chose I gave you a chance, my silence for the truth, your silence for my freedom how does it feel you choose your sugar cane once, twice dare three times, a vision has never been such a clear momentum we’re soft worriors survivours of heartbeats when we become sweet for you enough to cavity us both, be careful with her boasting crown, she can very quickly choose you not even a memory, forgotten, like you did not exist in her path to begin there are no more suicides left in vain of your name, let this be truth for loyalty you never really wanted her you chasing sight and whip lashed necks of other crowns while she was searching for your hand, she was right there, take note, just because I do not speak everything I see, how careless, you’ve lost to a silent mind
4.12.17 | royal temptation (this whole poem is a tease.)
I always find it overwhelmingly intriguing, when the heart gets tugged at this way, you feel it in such a raw and familiar calibre that its almost possessive, how quick the heart chooses a kind of trouble, knowing so well how forbidden it will taste, honeyed, these invisible chains are dangerous to a heart that knows no boundaries when it comes to who it’ll sweeten only for them to touch, glance at and tease, they don’t know this kind of willingness is so much painful and pleasure, so dangerously tempting, its really unfair to make the heart and mind turn want into need this much, watching the way heartbeat speaks only to fantasies about what heat can be done about thier throne to this body, how they can come and drink all of this hydration, to nourish them in ways that can only be teased by the sweetest parts of the mind until they are well fed, which means by me, until we are both full, and watch, how they comand this body, need a heartbeat that can dominate both, both honesty and this, a throne of all this woman and all that royalty, come closer, you can’t possibly be comfortable looking like that, let me help you become a little more familiar with the way I mean
5.9.17 | 6.9.17
Mental health is an interesting topic. I find that its so hard for the person going through their own mental health journey to talk about their mental health. If I’m being honest, it’s partly society, kin and few other factors. I want to personally tell you what happens when someone you deeply care about doesn’t understand your mental health, and how I reacted to connotations along the lines of ungrateful.
Before I get into the article I would like to properly introduce myself, as always.
My name is Fatma, I am a 22 year old woc who has had clinical depression for 2 years or so now, and like most with mental health I took my time denying it as I researched what being depressed meant in every way shape and/or form. This means what it looked and felt like, but honestly mostly anything that would explain how I was feeling internally at such a mass intensity. I sat with the intensity for years before getting professional help. I am also an INFJ-P, daughter, friend, sister, self-care, mental health creative writer and possibly other sub headings that I can’t think of at the moment.
A couple of days or a week ago I told a friend of 8+ years about getting an interview for David Jones that I had applied for months ago. I told her that I won’t be going to the interview because we both know what happened when I worked in the sales industry not so long ago prier to this email, and it has now become a trigger I told her. I was expecting for her as my friend to see where I’m trying to come from with my situation.
To my confusion she was so shocked, and said that I’m acting along the lines of ungrateful and I looked her dead in the eyes and said
“what’s the point of me going to an interview that triggers me mentally. I don’t think its about being ungrateful. I’m trying to take care of my mental health and myself.”
And immediately she said “..I mean it’s up to you.” like I had a choice. I’m not trying to talk ill of her nor the situation, but after this conversation I started really thinking about what it is about depression that is so hard to understand. Also because I don’t talk about it with anyone other than my psych, I’ve learnt to not expect others to understand depression. So to be fair I don’t blame her.
I didn’t know this then, but when she said that my mind almost tucked away what she had said and it was like what she had said was still being properly processed in my mind so that I could think about it clearly in my own time. In the moment although I was immediately internally irritated for a split second but not angry, because lord knows being an INFJ-P type it takes me time to react properly to situations most every time. I wanted to properly understand why she would say something like that to me knowing very well my situation and that she is a very close friend of mine. So before I could even react emotionally my body and my mind were unconsciously protecting me from my emotions knowing very well this was not usually how I would react.
From that day on I had started to get really depressed and each day it just got worse. I was frustratingly trying to unpack why on my own for an exhausting month. Then with my psychologist, we unpacked how I was feeling piecing together what was going on inside my head to figure out the trigger was mentioned by a friend, and my mental health was still reacting to the words said. In that moment, I was so shocked I couldn’t help but break down and everything I held back just overflowed out of me.
Even though I said I was done crying from others words, understanding that this is not what they really mean because to others, they don’t know how mental health functions in the body so for them its usually not that they really mean it, but rather they don’t understand its intensity and manifestation of their choice of words while talking to someone who is ageing through mental health.
What I would really want to challenge is why is it that we aren’t actively talking about mental health.
What are we so scared of?
We as a race don’t understand how it completely works, and for the person who is going through this internal battle all they do is everything they can to help themselves.
I strongly believe talking about mental health is so important. It may be uncomfortable for some however, this is only because as a society we get to decide what is of importance and mental health is without a doubt one of those justices.
Think about it like this. When we are in pain what’s the first thing as human beings we do as the kin, we listen, want to comfort and we want to help. So, why is it that when someone is going through mental health the same thing isn’t practiced? We all want to do what we can to make the people we love and care about around us feel accepted and trusted, mental health is no different.
30.8.17 | Temporary
Been circling the idea of temporary, a moment so intense it almost feels like its going to last, how do these moments decide their own, are we able to see it coming, how much should we invent into their moment to know if it lasts, if there’s a real chance, sometimes we can’t tell and all the uncanny match up and by then we’ve done too much, such an intense feeling, of not wanting to let go, of not wanting to let go even though they are a bad habit, how long are we allowed to stay this deluded, the dreamer in me is always played for a fool, the calculated oasis in me says you knew how this was going to end, to not trust the body is to play yourself, to play with your feelings, but it is not your fault, as human beings what are we supposed to do when we desire, an intensity so strong we dwell so deep, we didn’t even realize it was this bad until they stopped trying-, I’ve been circling the idea of temporary, moments so intense its going to last, moments decided their own, able to see it coming, we invest into their moment, there’s a real chance, all the uncanny, an intense feeling, wanting to let go, they are a bad habit, allowed to stay, the dreamer in me, the calculated oasis says this was going to end, trust the body, your feelings, its not your fault, human beings, we desire, intensity so strong, realized it was this bad, they stopped trying, been circling temporary, moments so intense, this fear grows.
I’d like to start with a sentence I always remind myself.
“Without failure, how do you expect to succeed?”
Being in my early 20’s I am learning courage to take on opportunities with clinical depression being so present in my daily lifestyle. At the age of 10 I was learning how to be an expressive person for myself through poetry. I remember writing poems when I was at my most vulnerable, I learnt to be creative with my words in a sense of being able to be as expressive as I wanted without being judged, because what I wrote was for my eyes only. These words were my comfort and truth.
When I started my very first blog in June 16th 2015 it was also another stepping milestone for me. This platform was where I escaped in order to be heard and understood by my body mentally, emotionally and physically. Poetry taught me to never underestimate the power of a platform for your self care and your own voice. This is how self revelations and taboo considered revolutions are started.
Being a poet, listening to poetry and having a friend that is also a poet who is going through mental health is one of the ways that is helping me the most. Being able to connect with somebody at such an intimate and personal level with my poetry, telling my story about something that is considered so taboo especially in the black community, I truly believe in awareness and taking the right self-care and love for yourself first. For me this has naturally inspired my confidence when I am feeling really depressed. I’m still learning to notice some of my symptoms and being a poet as well as being creative, I’m teaching myself to never apologies for my mental health, ever.
The way I see it, creativity and poetry have helped me positively progress my mental health. I would defiantly say it has taught me how to be patient with it’s intensity at my own pace. Educated me to use my own words, to reach out, as well as tell the world about my mental health journey. This was a huge deal for me, I am generally a very private person.
To crown how much I’ve grown through creativity and poetry it goes hand in hand. To me, being creative means being able to express yourself in a way that is true to you, and poetry is a form of art, another platform to express your creativity. I strongly believe everyone’s story is as powerful as their vulnerable narrative.
Hi, my name is Fatma, I’m a 22 going 23 this year. I am a sister, daughter, activist, blogger, fashion intrigued, clinically depressed, self-care, mental health creative writer who lives in Melbourne. Here is my story.
I was born and grew up in Kenya Nairobi, with both my parents one older sister, my younger sister and my baby brother. In 2002 we moved to Melbourne Australia. When I was 10 years old I was a shy kid that didn’t talk much and had one friend who I was with for a short time but after a while we drifted apart most of it is a blur which I honestly believe is a suppressing of my memory. When I was 10, it was the first time I had ever tried to kill myself, it was also around this age I had started writing, but to me it was just a way to express my feelings because I didn’t talk much or at all. I was bullied by one girl who up to this day will never forget her full name, and from here on out my life started to really take a toll on me mentally without me consciously realizing nor understanding. I started to feel as though I was just existing rather than living.
When I was in year 7, my mental health really plummeted. If you asked me about this year I literally have very little memory of it. I only remember finally having a group of friends in school, and being able to slowly talk and laugh but even up to this day I can’t remember if it was coping or compensating for my lack of visibility and isolation through out my primary school years and daily life from school and home. I also become more suicidal, and my family knew nothing of this. My routine at home consisted of me going to school, and living in my bedroom.
When I was in year 8 this is when I met my best friend who is still my friend up to today. She helped me with getting my confidence little by little, and slowly I grew into the person I am today. I am always very grateful to her, she has given me so much I can’t ever put it into words. Even with my personality starting to show I was still very caught up in my head and had all these unexplained emotions. But I figured everyone felt this way and that I would grow out of it as I get older.
I didn’t. As I got older, until I was 20 I was having recurring panic attacks mostly at night that I didn’t even know what was happening at the time, then after a while I realized something might be wrong. So it was this whole year that I started researching how I felt emotionally, physically and mentally to find out I might have major depression. I was in so much denial for a whole year and a half and this made my mental health worse. At this point, I had no motivation to do anything, even more suicidal, easily irritated, didn’t eat well, and shut everyone out.
Since then, I have made a blog for my creative writing, performed my first ever three poems on stage in Melbourne Afrocentric, made great friends, starting to network with beautiful creative souls in Melbourne, much closer with my sisters and brother, seeing a professional, and I am much more able to communicate my feelings now; And in the works of creating my brand for the organic skin care market.
My mental health is something I truly struggle with everyday, but it is also something I pride my time and care in. I am still learning about it and learning to take good care of it and my body in three cycles (emotionally, physically and mentally), to be much kinder to myself and know that my depression does not define me, it assists in molding me into a better person each day. Even when the really bad days make it feel like it can’t get any better, even so, this, is when I know I am the most creative.
18.8.17 | Kind
Been rationally drowning self in understanding how it is you love someone and whether words that learn how to cut tongues and bind itself to narrative that live in the masquerades of awkward glances, side way smiles and pretty words, how we, are watching love move, and dip its self first, is this really love at all, capable of taking such an intensity by what you seek rather than what you see, I mean, if we really think about what it means to love someone beneath the surface of what is in our horizon and feel, one of the unambiguous confessions left honestly is what we seek, I’m not repeating about the way we configure tangibles and intangibles, I’m begging what varies, the in between instances where when we make a decision without a seconds thought, immediately play a mental monologue of what we think we saw in love, and there, caught in the gloss memoirs of what we seeked to begin with, in them, holding onto hidden between silver measures of their imperfections, reminding them and ourselves of how fragile we can all be, the human heart beating at each attempt, always, do we really know love at all, what Im really trying to say is a friend once told me, don’t be in a rush, and I remember looking at her and thinking, those are words I have memorized for myself before.
18.8.17 | Care
The introverted mind, a consolation of masses that are too much to even ponder and what it really means when you’re watching the grey sky from inside of your bedroom window, a mental hereon of an illness that leaves you feeling the breeze from inside the body and learning to care about yourself even if its narcissistic, I’ve come to learn that even with all the pondering done there’s not much room left for taking a break, even so, there is a huge appreciation for silence which most would find softly uncomfortable, but when you’re this invested uncomfortable learns to settle into a kind of body and politely it becomes a survival thing, when you spend this much time with the mind and this kind body you pick up on care that is much deeper than what you may have previously composed, you also don’t like picking up phone calls, so often we forget that its okay to be our selves, its hard to remind a kind of existence that only knows what its been told is okay, and the way we unconsciously allow something that is not greater than us to set our kind of normal being, still, it is not our fault, need to learn ourselves to be kind to our own, and never be submissive or kind to a system that is not kind to you, said that we don’t have to be so strong all the time we don’t have to hide so much of ourselves just to please a temporary feeling, a temporary person, we’re always allowed to feel as valid as someone we love, because if it were them, this strange, you would be softer, kinder, and you would love them harder.
24.7.17 | 26.7.17
If you listen closely, you can hear the mind telling this body words that feel a lot like the ways in which fake, dishonest, like to come close and hug its most vulnerable parts that think belong to this body, how this mental state isn’t something so temporary, that you can’t just turn its function off, that survival, is the same as this health, how quick this illness likes to give metaphors meaning in the same sentence as its brainwashed malaise, you’re worth all the effort, how each word cuts the tips of the tongue, there is always a show of what’s left to unpack, doesn’t like to be misunderstood, this illness, will hurt you first before it hurts the heart working its way up to the mind, how fragile you are, how strong you have be, this mindful can’t see the other side, convinced you’re here forever, don’t ignore what is happening here, this feeling, is trying to talk to this body, tell you how it doesn’t like to be misunderstood remember, to be cradled and rocked, can you see the way it’ll pull at the places where the hurt is most tender do you remember, will mention words like heal and broken to soften a passing feeling, its not always this lonely, in this moment you’re to use a gentle hand, whisper this body to witness all the light in compliments sweet into ears and able to stay this humble, be this kind, we’re all gifted and gift to somebody, to be careful with our words, never use them in split tongue, this is how you brake broken people, we’re all creations of our own, never to be consumed by others but ourselves, in the most tasteful way we perceive this bodies alive, if you listen closely, you can hear the mind telling this body it has always belonged to please its own downfall and accountable to its self, be careful with your words, they are the type of narrative that can dream or damp this beings efforts, do not use them in fit rage, you’re to choose its caliber wisely before you regret its escape from the mouth, as human beings this is the least we can do, as human beings this is the least we can do to stay this balanced, a form of evidence, how we, are all chemically cinematic in hope of balanced sane mobile actuality, this, is what is means to unpack the mind in ways which astound the average being, this is how the mind talks to me when it finds, the right ways to conjoin its fate into my hands, roaming this body its feeling awaiting its welcomed here, I am a home to myself before I am home of any other being animate, melody in twin, I am the poetry in this being first, this is the kind of sweetness that can not be earned by eye candy, you must be as sweet as you look, the sweetest way to tempt a kind of body that has been learnt off pretty enough before sweet inside of this beautiful body, wanting to be sweet enough for both and can only hope melody of animate will do the same.