Wednesday, August 30, 2017

From the darkness emerges a bright light...

In May of this year I went through a rather dramatic life changing moment. After enduring one of the darkest depressive episodes I've experienced in years I tried to commit suicide. A friend of mine at the urging of my mother had me go to the emergency room to seek treatment. When we arrived I was in a full blown anxiety attack when we got the to front desk. Thankfully, my friend was with me and she was able to do most of the talking for me and acted as a buffer when all of the strange hospital staff were poking and prodding at me.

All I remember feeling in those first few hours in the ER was how desperately I wanted to be back home. The in and out buzzing of nurses, doctors and social workers was not helping my anxiety and but I was no longer suicidal.

If anything I was more disappointed in myself that I had gone to the edge and almost fell into darkness. I promised myself years ago after my last suicide attempt that I would never allow my sorrow and pain overwhelm me like this again. For 17 years I was able to keep that promise to myself despite all that I have gone through in that time.

All I could ask myself was how did it get to this point where I was so willing to dance with death. I took a look at my life and realized just how unhappy I was. My illness was controlling my life and I didn't even realize it. I bottled up so much over the years and knew the voices in my head weren't real, but in one single moment of weakness I let my guard down and all I could hear was them screaming at me.

I wish I could more accurately describe what it is like in my head. If people could only experience for just a moment of what I live with on a daily basis, maybe they would understand how hard I fight everyday for those moments of sanity where I know what life is. 

All it took was a weak moment and a hateful person to completely undo every coping mechanism and self support measures I had built.

The 36 hours I spent in the hospital with my husband at my side, made me realize that I need more than just myself to survive my illness. I decided to start seeing a therapist (which I do weekly), I'm also seeing a psychiatrist to work on a treatment plan for my condition and most importantly I am devoting 100% of my energy into self care. It took a long time for me to accept that I am not like other people and I need a lot more time and energy to devote to taking care of myself. 

I am now three months into my recovery journey and I feel infinitely better than I have in so long. I'm surrounded by people who love and care about me and I have the ability to get the help I need. My brush with the edge while emotionally painful was also a blessing and a wake up call. Our moments of life are much too precious to just give them up and throw them away.

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