I know I haven’t written in a long time. Part of that is because life happened and Part of that is because I didn’t feel like I had anything important to share at the time. But this weekend everything caught up with me from the past few months and it really struck a chord.
It’s no secret that for years I have struggled with severe depression and major anxiety and panic disorder among other things (don’t get me started on my headaches and how much that can mess up my psych treatment). For years I kept quiet about this. I felt ashamed.
I mean how do you tell anyone you love that you want to die or that you did at some point? How do you tell anyone this: “that I cant leave my apartment because maybe I left my flat iron on and the apartment is going to burn down but I am at the door and I need to leave to go get groceries but let me go check one more time I think I left that on, oh my god was that tires squealing outside? I am going to get in a car accident. That is a sign that I am going to get into a car accident. But no, I have to get to the store I have no food, Val just step out side and lock your door its fine. But wait no I seriously think I left the Flat iron on I probably just thought it was unplugged when I looked but maybe I should look again… NO! The key is in the door I am going to lock it. … Nope I have to go back inside I heard another car, I am seriously going to die if I go out side. (Opens up door) Oh look I left the light in the bathroom on, see that’s a sign I cant go home. I will try again tomorrow.”
How do you tell someone any of that without sounding “crazy”?
But the thing was, keeping quiet about my struggle was making it worse. I eventually realized that and for the past 2 years, I have been struggling with the people I love. When I decided to start this blog it was because I really needed to write for the therapeutic side of things. I needed to get it out. Over the course of this time, so many things have happened, both good and bad. I found out people knew I was suffering and chose not to say anything, I found out other people looked up to me as a role model because they thought I was very well put together. I found out that people get so use to the masks we choose to wear that when you get rid of it, some people don’t like you anymore. You become Messy. I was no longer this Neat put together person all the time. I found out it is okay to cry. It is okay to look at your best friend and say “I wanted to see you today but I just can’t do this”.
When I finally got Bella, she gave me back a part of my life. That scenario I said at the beginning? Well, with Bella it doesn’t happen. Instead it goes more like this. “I really don’t want to leave the apartment today, but I need to go shopping and Bella needs to go out, okay I can do this. I walk to the door put on her leash, ugh I think I left the flat iron on, I go to check no its fine I go back to Bella, then she puts her nose behind my knee to go, I turn back, was that really unplugged? Bella puts a paw on my knee, oh right I already checked that lets go. Okay out the door, Bella sits while I lock it, door clicks Bella stands and well now I have to go because she has to go potty. And I know if it gets bad, she will alert and guide me out.”
See it is a really different scenario.
All of this got brought up because, right now I am struggling with medications and the longer I stay quiet and don’t say something to the people that Judge me at the grocery store, or the restaurant, or in my social circle or family or People that read things on facebook, the more I am in danger of going back to who I use to be. I don’t hide behind my door; I don’t hide behind my dog or my family. I tackle each day even when it is so hard just to get out of my bed, or my room. I don’t want a medal for making it with a mental illness, I just want acceptance. I want people to stop judging medical treatment, or how much a person is struggling by the way they look.
After the last few weeks I have had, I saw a story going around facebook. It is about the semicolon project and a girl who went and got a tattoo as a reminder. You can read the blog post here: https://hpwritesblogs.wordpress.com/2015/06/18/www-thesemicolonproject-com/
Basically the Semicolon project is this: A Semicolon represents a sentence the author could have ended, but chose not to. That author is you and the sentence is your life. For many with anxiety and depression, that Idea to end your sentence can be very appealing, so I absolutely loved this idea. I mean I’ve thought about ending my sentence, more then I want to admit, but something always keeps me going. Maybe it is the idea that it can get better. So with my frustrations in the past, and my new purple semicolon tattoo on my ankle, I choose to continue my sentence and I hope that no matter what people are saying to or about you, or how bad your illness gets, I hope that you too chose to continue your sentence.
Become your own author;