This quarantine is making me realize how much of my #mentalhealth maintenance relies upon routine. People joke about staying in their pjs/sweatpants for days at a time or not showering or taking frequent naps. (thread) #AcademicTwitter #phdchat
I have fought, for over 10 years now, not to do any of those things in my daily life, with moderate success. I've had my bad days/weeks/months, but for the most part, I've gotten my chronic #depression under control.
Because the last time it got the best of me (Nov 2009), I ended up (voluntarily) in a psych ward for 5 days and took a year off from college. With medication and regular therapy, I was able to get my life back on track.
But perhaps what people who don't have #mentalhealth issues don't realize is that it doesn't end there. There is no silver bullet. This isn't a once-you've-had-it-and-get-help-it's-over situation. It takes constant work and checking in with yourself and it's exhausting at times.
Compounded with "normal" grad school struggles and the depression can *easily* take over. So this quarantine has been kind of scary for me - not only am I worried about my family/friends, finishing up my PhD, trying to find a job, but now I get to work from home -
- with next to no social interaction (thank god for my husband) and hope that my brain doesn't decide to screw me over. Any day I get out of bed and change out of my pjs is a fucking win in my book.
I miss the office. I miss checking in with other people on a daily basis. I miss not feeling invisible just because we have #socialdistancing measures in place.
I know we want it to just be #physicaldistancing, but do you know how hard it is to tell your friends/family over text or video chat that you are okay but like not *really* okay? Is anyone doing okay right now? "How are you doing?" is just a hilarious question to me rn -
- because I promise you, anyone with #mentalhealth issues is just fighting to keep their head above water.

There is something about just *being* with other people that gets you out of a dark mental space. And the routine of getting up and going to the office really helped.
Anyway, I'll probably delete this later, but thanks to @SusannaLHarris and @xiaofei_lin for giving me the courage to even post this much. You guys are true role models!
You can follow @lzocean.
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