Mental Illness

Too Much and Never Quite Enough

It is a constant war, one that will likely never be fully won, but you learn to embrace the idea that not every battle is a life or death situation.

Dusty Marie

I am always amazed at how quickly the pendulum can swing from “too much” to “not enough.” For me, it’s not a day-to-day battle; it’s literally minute-to-minute. When anxiety and depression take hold, I either feel every emotion rush to the surface, or I feel nothing. I either can’t force myself out of bed, or I suffer from insomnia. Time in the middle, balanced and neutral, is glorious and rare.

“Too much,” for me, looks like the little girl who everyone referred to as “sensitive and shy.” She grew up to become the woman who is “too emotional and too introverted.” “Too much” leaves me overwhelmed and everlastingly exhausted. It’s too much to be an Empath, feeling every emotion times a thousand. It’s too much to have a greatness burning within me that has no outlet. It’s too much to have grand visions and great dreams with no method of achieving either. It’s too much to know that I am often far too much.

My “not enough” is more like, “never quite enough.” Every dream, every plan, every pursuit seems to come up short of the mark. It doesn’t matter how hard I try, how determined I am, or how strongly I persevere, it’s always never quite enough to get me to the end. That’s when the fear of invisibility sets in. I begin to realize that I have no support, no voice, no platform, and I know it’s all because I’m not quite enough. I am never quite enough to make an impact, to have great influence, or to generate notice. And I feel invisible and utterly hopeless.

Anxiety shows up, and suddenly, everything, myself included, is too much. Depression arrives for battle, and, inevitably, I find myself pitted against “not enough.” In my life, they’re opposite sides of the same coin, and living with both is unpredictable and hellish. There is no roadmap or guidebook on how to navigate such contradictions. The only reliable resource is experience. Along the way, you pick up tips and tricks to maneuver around these life obstacles, but just when you think you have it all figured out, they find new ways to weaken your best defense. It is a constant war, one that will likely never be fully won, but you learn to embrace the idea that not every battle is a life or death situation. Sometimes, they’re minor skirmishes, mere setbacks. Then, you take a deep breath, dust yourself off, you move on, and live to fight another day.