Lifting the Clouds: The Effects of Medication in Mental Illness

I feel like doing again. It’s probably the meds.

Mental disorders can kill motivation. Not just kill. Murder with extreme prejudice. Before Abilify, I can’t remember the last time I played guitar for me.

That for me? That’s critical. Until last week, the thought of picking up a guitar brought the pain of a thousand failed expectations and words of praise. From OTHERS. My dad saying he’d teach me guitar, but only if I could learn on an acoustic. The friend who bought me my electric saying I could be so good in a year with practice.

That was at least six years ago now, likely more. Since before college, I’ve dropped so many hobbies I still love. Graphite sketching. Video editing. Painting. Usually because someone judged my work unworthy.

That’s why it’s so strange to feel like DOING again; to pick up my guitar and run finger exercises; to look at a folder of my writing and want to pick up the pen and write more. These artifacts of my life no longer scream judgement of failure at me; now they invite, coax, and wait patiently.

I hope I can find patience with myself in theirs.

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6 Responses

  1. Rukie says:

    I have felt the lack of motivation in my life. Even when I feel motivated to pick up the guitar, I am paralyzed by my fear of failure.

    • RaidonTPhoenix says:

      I seriously thought a snapped D string meant my guitar was judging me for not playing it. Inanimate objects don’t judge. It’s rough, for sure.

  2. Crysta says:

    That explains sooo much. I’m surrounded by these “failure” things, just waiting to feel okay to try again.

    • RaidonTPhoenix says:

      I’m sure you remember what we talked about the other day. I’d urge at least giving it a shot.

  3. Mara says:

    Oh, how I wish Abilify helped me, too! This sounds GREAT, and I’m happy you’re shrugging off those critical voices.

    I was on it VERY briefly because it imbalanced me to the point that someone had to go with me and almost literally hold my hand to get to the clinic where it was prescribed and get taken off of it immediately. The level of anxiety it triggered was shocking, as I’d suppressed anxiety completely and had no idea how to handle it other than feel stressed, which, of course, escalated the anxiety.

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