When you’re in the fog
Mike had attempted to take his life the weekend before I met him, he was “beaten down”, felt stuck and in a constant dark cloud; nothing seemed to work out for him and everything just went wrong. He felt like he was trapped in a “hamsters wheel” with no way out and no control. The fog had crept up on him and taken over.
I know from experience how we may feel stuck, overwhelmed, worthless and helpless, trapped in a negative wheel where every day feels the same and we just can’t seem to shake it. There seems to be no end in sight, no release or let up.
Something awful may have happened, a crisis or traumatic event but sometimes there is nothing, no reason, no event or trigger we can put our finger on or blame; the fog just takes over.
It may feel like a cloud descends with no warning and no apparent reason. It can linger for what seems like an eternity or pass as quickly as it came only to return whenever it feels.
It may take us down even further, a little at a time or knock us off our feet with one swift blow.
We shut the curtains, ignore the phone, don’t go out, phone in sick and stay in bed hoping this will go away but it doesn’t, it grows and gets worse and we can’t see a way out. Maybe we get so low we reach out and ask for help, but nobody seems to understand. The never-ending wheel continues, and the fog gets darker.
It can go on for so long that we get used to it and start to accept that this is how we feel, getting out of the fog seems impossible, even frightening. We may start to think that is our only option our destiny, this is where we belong, and we deserve to stay.
We have become comfortably uncomfortable stuck in a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Doing anything outside our discomfort feels frightening and not worth the risk of getting worse and at least we know where we are. Getting out of the fog seems like a million miles away; we can’t even remember what it feels like to be out.
It’s hard to believe that there may be a way out when everything seems to be against us and there is no end in sight.
With a few tools Mike was able to get out of the fog and start living, he stepped off the “hamsters wheel” and out of his discomfort. Mike is now moving forward step by step and feeling better the fog has cleared and there is light ahead. There are hurdles along the way, ups and downs “bad things still happen” but he is well equipped to deal with them and no longer descends into a dark cloud.
Mike has noticed that things are different, he is smiling and feeling happier, his family are happier and things feel like they are on the up.
There is light, it may seem far away but if we take it a step at a time we can clear the fog and move on.
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