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This is the blog of Ian Rosales Casocot. Filipino writer. Sometime academic. Former backpacker. Twink bait. Hamster lover.

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Saturday, May 29, 2021

entry arrow1:53 PM | A Journey

I promised myself I’d be vocal about my mental health journey, to help end the stigma. So I must confess: the past eight years [especially the last five], I’ve been living with a cloud in my head. I forget things, I lose focus a lot, I get so much anxiety [exacerbated by the pandemic] because concentration took so much effort, which led to paralysis and depression. Chatting online, phone calls, and emails were big panic triggers for years and years. [Now you know!] And compounded by my perfectionism, my tendency to be detailed and structured, and my high frustration tolerance, I felt I was doomed. Writing was my only sure thing, where rivulets of my attention came together for real. People close to me know I rarely ask for help, so when I felt the need to seek professional help, I knew I could not handle things anymore. Thank God, I finally did. I got my diagnosis, and I’m going through treatment. My psychiatrist just messaged me: “It helps, huh? It’s been a while that you’ve been managing it on your own.” Yes! This photo is me chatting through Zoom with my best friends Ted Regencia [in Dapitan] and Kristyn Maslog-Levis [in Sydney] today. I finally was able to chat with them online after so many years! This was a breakthrough.

I’m grateful for the people who stood by me, and picked me up whenever I faltered in my own sense of self. Their kindness is the kiss of angels.

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