“I’m not OK”: Working through Trauma While Coping with Mental Illness

I remember the loud bang that hit like thunder.

I remember seeing the glass collapse into my backseat like a runner who had lost their strength.

I sat there looking into the cars facing me in disbelief. Frozen and confused.

I was in a car wreck on 10/30/2019 and it changed my life.

In 2018, I was diagnosed as having bipolar disorder with psychosis. I had known something was off since childhood, however I never knew what it was.

I spent a year on meds to control my symptoms, but I did exactly what I was told not to do…I stopped taking the pills. (What can I say? Y’all know I’m a little hardheaded lol)

No lie. Had I listened a little more, I probably wouldn’t have had as much internal conflict as I did through the most recent months.

After my wreck, I struggled hardcore with PTSD and depression. I felt completely alone and isolated. Basically, honey, I was giving everyone a major side eye who wasn’t there for me.

Every night I replayed the wreck when I closed my eyes to go to sleep.

Watching the truck slam into me from my rearview mirror.

Remembering my eyes trying to focus as my car was spinning around.

In case you didn’t know, mental illness and trauma don’t exactly go well together.

I remember staying up at night so I wouldn’t have to keep reliving what happened. I would literally ask myself, “Why can’t I get over this?”

After several weeks of trying to cope (and failing miserably I might add), I finally went to go speak to someone.

Wait…let me not lie. My coworkers STRONGLY encouraged me to go speak with someone.

Thank God for having therapists as coworkers, huh?

I met with a clinician who broke it down for me and explained to me how a person with a mental illness can be completely fine up until a traumatic event happens because our brain processes information differently. Sometimes it takes people with bipolar disorder a little longer to understand and accept a traumatic event that has occurred.

Something about that conversation changed things. Something about hearing the logistics behind my mind made me feel better. Close friends shared words of encouragement, but they didn’t register.

Me hearing that my mind works differently and processes things differently only proved that what she was telling me was true.

Basically, I discovered myself after all of that chaos and, sis, I was shook.

I really feel like after I left there, I came into myself.

Everything has been completely clear since then. The limitations of my friendships, my goals, my needs, and what I wanted in the future.

Yes, having to go to physical therapy multiple times a week sucks, but the place to which it has brought me has been beautiful.

I feel stronger in being my authentic self. I feel like more of me than I have in many, many years.

Hell, y’all. Ya girl has started blogging again! That obviously means something is going right…right? 🙂

Anywho, I wrote this blog to say that shitty things happen sometimes, but it only matters how you move forward. My biggest battle after my wreck was looking at everyone else who had been through something similar and forcing myself to try to heal at their time.

That is the ultimate set up for failure.


You owe it to yourself!

Stay blessed, friends.

P.S. Thank you for all of the support with my first book, “Immortal Whiskey”! The second edition of “Immortal Whiskey” will be released 2/2/2020 so be on the look out for more details soon!

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