Tuesday, January 28, 2014

I know what you're going through...

No, not exactly. But, you see, if you're struggling with depression or anxiety, I have been there. I hate depression. I hate that it sucked the life out of me. I hate that I have to fight everyday to get up and get going. It's exhausting. My body doesn't react well to the medications either. My whole right side had this feeling of being perpetually "asleep" for weeks. My right foot still doesn't want to cooperate even though my medication has changed.

My depression is a shadow that hides in dark corners that pounces during my weakest moments. However, it is my anxiety disorder that viciously attacks my body without warning. It is absolutely insufferable. Unbearable. Crippling. Overwhelming. Two weeks ago my body went into some weird shock. I woke up on a Monday at 6:30 and my heart was pounding. Something was WRONG. Well, that's how I perceived it. That's all it takes. Anxiety is your body's natural response to stress. It's your fight or flight response turning on. Mine just gets triggered easily. I couldn't get my breathing under control. I began to sweat. I began to sob. Then I threw up for six hours. I was so desperate. No medicine was able to help because I couldn't keep anything down. It's terrifying that I know exactly how people feel in the moments before they commit suicide. They aren't weak. They are sick. They don't know they can get better. That's the difference between me and the victims of suicide who become powerless to the dark, vicious monster that is depression and anxiety. This demon takes over and sucks all the hope of recovery out of their bodies.

I have a chemical imbalance in my brain. No, I am not crazy. I have an illness, the same way someone with diabetes does. I am so grateful that I have such a wonderful family that helped me get through those few days.

I'll repeat that: DAYS. It happened every morning for almost a week. That doesn't sound like a long time, but when you're going through it, I can't even put into words how miserable it actually is. I knew I had to do something. I went to the urgent care. I have no idea what I said, did, how long I was there, or who I saw. It's all a blur. All I know is I was one sick little girl. After some fast-acting medicine, I was asleep. I slept and slept. Getting three hours of sleep, then throwing up for six hours a day took a toll on my body.

I have been dealing with these demons for a little over two years now. If you met me, you'd never suspect anything. I don't generally talk about it. But someone has to. I want people to know that they aren't alone. I want everyone to feel loved. I want people that are too afraid to get help, to reach out. It's difficult but it's so much better than suffering in silence.

Different things work for different people.

Exercise-helps for about an hour after, then abnormal exhaustion sets in. I find this to be the most frustrating technique to reducing my anxiety. My right foot starts feeling like it's dragging. I realize how out of shape I am. I feel like everyone is judging how slow I run or how big I look compared to these 90 pound high school girls. It's just not fun...AT ALL.

Vitamins- Vitamin D, Multivitamin, Krill Oil, Garlic Capsules...I can't say I notice a difference but my diet lacks a lot of red meat, green leafy vegetables, and Omega 3.

Cleaning-cleaning gives me a sense of control. I can physically see a difference and it makes me feel good...until everything is messed up an hour later.

My mother and my baby brother (21) are very gentle with me when I'm really on edge and that is more helpful than words can explain.

Decaf coffee- it still has caffeine in it but not very much. I drink it because I am so tired all the time. Then I drink too much and my chest gets that tight feeling in it.

What I'm trying to say is no one is ever alone. I am proud of YOU. You have fought many battles. You've had hard days. Days that you didn't think you had the strength to keep moving, and YOU DID. You're so much stronger than you believe. It's ok to cry. It's ok to tell someone how you feel. Don't keep it inside. You have a 100% track record of moving on. You are a fighter. You are allowed to fall down, but you aren't allowed to stay down. Pick yourself up and keep moving because you can. I BELIEVE IN YOU.
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