I remember early on in this blog, I wrote a post about what I called the Waiting Game. Without going into the entire post, I basically wrote about how it’s not so bad to be patient and wait for things to happen to you as long as you continue to do your best to live a good life. That waiting on something doesn’t have to be so terrible, and sometimes it’s necessary.
Well, that was two years ago. Some things have changed, some have not, but it’s safe to say that my life now looks different than it was then. That also means I have a different outlook, mindset and yes, a mental health perspective that’s shifted over the years. Now, I know why I was stressing to be patient. That post was more for me than it was for anyone else, to be honest. Because at the time I was a massive believer in timing. I still am, but there’s a key difference – I don’t want to try to time my life perfectly anymore.
The relationship I had with timing wasn’t healthy. I told myself I was just waiting for the right timing, for ‘something’ to happen in my life. Looking back, what I was actually was doing was trying to time things to sync up perfectly so my life could be as painless as possible. So I learned – things in your life can be timed perfectly, or they can be timed…imperfectly. But what is maddening and frustrating is when you try to ‘time’ your life yourself. And I got frustrated.
When it comes to mental health, sometimes I hear that we should wait until we’re better, or ‘cured’, to do things. Whether that’s applying for a job, getting into a relationship or going back to school, the waiting game can be very real in this narrative. And while I would advocate not to get involved in something if you don’t have the stability to do it mentally, saying that you should wait until you’re ‘better’ or ‘cured’ isn’t anyone else’s place to decide. My depression is not linear. Some days are good, some days are bad. I can work on becoming healthier and happier, but the assumption to wait until I’m ‘cured’ to start my life is damaging.
My mental illness is part of me. Some days it could be prevalent, some days it might not matter. But it is part of how I think, feel, and act in the same way other chronic conditions can affect people. There might be reasons to try to time things in your life, but I don’t want to time my mental health with other aspects of my life. Will it work? I don’t know. It could be risky, but I don’t think so. It won’t be any better or worse than waiting on everything as I try to time up my life, which is what I had been doing. So yes, timing is important. But it isn’t everything, and you can’t force it. And maybe, just maybe, that’s how things can end up working out in your favor.