Tuesday, April 7, 2015

What does it take. A Journey with Depression, Anxiety disorder and an Eating disorder

I'm going to be vulnerable for a bit and go into some depths I haven't really openly spoken about. 

I've not been one to hide my emotional state for long. I was taught not to as a coping mechanism while in a mental hospital. Yes, you read that right. The inspirational over comer you keep up with has been in a mental hospital. I placed myself there when I was a Jr in High School. 

  I've struggled with depression for as long as I can remember, but I have also dealt with body image issues just as long. 

As a young -thin I might add-girl, I was reminded not to eat to much because "you will get fat". Or told in my teens that I had gained a noticeable amount of weight. When I was at a health weight, the body people would kill for, it was usually because of my eating disorder. Depriving myself of food or eating a small amount then purging it. 

  I was noticed, attention was given, but not exactly what everyone would want. Boys and men objectified me to the point that I felt that's all I could be good for. Mans use. 
I was sexually harassed not only verbally but physically from the time I was 4-5 years old until I became a teen. 

I was constantly trying to please everyone, everyone but myself. I put up with disrespect from those around me just so that I would be surrounded by people. I dumbed myself down and hid in a shell more times than I can count just to satisfy others. But I hated it. i hated myself. My mind went to those scary places. How could I rid myself of this pain. 

   Anxiety attacks took over. Overwhelming feelings and I found that physical pain relieved my mental anguish. So at 16 I began cutting myself. The anxiety attacks would become so bad that they took over my body, harming myself was the only way I could relieve the pain. My body ached, I couldn't breath, until I cut myself. Feeling the pain from the cut and seeing blood run was the only way to relieve the emotional pain at that moment. 

  I hated my body so much that I often thought and talked about cutting off the fat. Yeah, it was that bad. I hated it so much that I starved it and then damaged my throat in the process of releasing food that I felt bad for eating. 

   When I got to the point of thinking of killing myself to relieve the pain I knew it wasn't where I was supposed to be, and I seeked help.

   Psychiatric help helped me. I gained other coping mechanisms to help myself and i gained some control of my body, my mind, and my eating disorder. I was surrounded by REAL people. People who truly gave a damn without ulterior motives. They just loved me. 

    Though i have been off medication for a few years, I STILL struggle daily. I AM stronger than I was 10 years ago, I have had to be. I have three children depending on me. One of which no one else can truly care for the way he needs due to his medical needs.

    I'm NOT the same person I was 3 years ago. I don't look at life the same. I see myself in a different light, and I see so many people around me in a different light. I no longer put myself in the spot to be every ones confidant when they feel the need, their stepping stone. I am no longer here to please others. Only my children, myself and the one man who has stood by me at every low point (my amazing husband). 

   Because of the new me and how hectic our life is, many people have walked away from me. I only have a SMALL hand full of people I can confide in. I am vocal about what goes on in my mind, reaching out for support and love, but still no one comes to the rescue. I guess I have gotten good at hiding the fact that I am truly struggling. Its nothing like it was a few years ago, its new, its different. Its realistic fears and stress from dealing with my sons conditions and the thought of how I CAN lose him. Stress from worrying about getting him to a competent hospital that can continue his life and quality of life, all while dealing with his limitations, day to day life with his siblings and my role as a wife. 

   So many have walked away that I honestly don't even try to open up to another friendship. People I cared deeply for and was close to.

  Recently a close family member tried to commit suicide. I am saddened for them. I know that feeling, what runs through your mind, and that they didn't reach out to get help before leading down that road. I am happy that they didn't succeed. That they can get the help they need to get to a healthy place. I tried to reach out a few times but I don't think it stuck. I feel they were consumed with what is going on in their life right now that maybe they didn't see it, and that's okay. Ive been there when I was in my younger days. Its hard to see everything going on when your mind is locked down in a hard place. 

   But now I sit back and I see how many people ran to this person to check in on them, incorporated them in their plans to bring them through this rough time in their life. While I am so happy for that, they NEEDED it, it just opens my eyes more to who has been there for me recently, in my dark times. Its not many, my husband and a small handful of people. A few amazing heart moms who have called, texted or private messaged me to check in on how I am doing and how things are going, offering up an ear to listen. 

   No one else. It makes me think "What would it take?" What does ti take for people to care? Does it take me going completely down into that dark place where I do begin to think those dark thoughts, trying or succeeding in ending my life for people to give a shit and say how much they care? 

   Then I think maybe those people are no longer needed in my life. Even if they are family and old friends. Which is sad because of how close I used to be to some of them. But it shouldn't take me getting to that point for people to show they care, for them to show up, invite me into outings or a cup of coffee to help me cope with this hard time. While I could really use that, because lets face it I have alot going on, and major decisions to make again. I also want genuine people in my life, not someone who feels obligated to be here because I am in a rough spot. I know I will make it through, but a few good friends who care could be beneficial too. 

   I know in the end I have a few quality people in my life who are there when I need them to be, helping to pick me up when I am enduring the rough spots on this journey called life. For them, I am thankful.