I’m a very private when it’s comes to a lot of things, especially my anxiety and depression. Most of my family doesn’t even know. It’s not something I want to be known for, so I just don’t talk about it often, but I strongly believe in strength in numbers. Hopefully my story can inspire others to come out and open a discussion about it because society’s perception is haunting.
I still remember my first panic attack. It was like nothing I’ve ever experienced before, I literally felt like I was going to die, and after having gone to the hospital I knew it could be a real possibility if I didn’t get help. It feels like you’re having a heart attack, your palms get sweaty, sometimes accompanied with a dizziness that’s quite lethal. It had gotten to a point where I was going to the emergency room so frequently, the doctors and nurses knew my case and knew I needed to help, and fast. After much thought, I decided I would try therapy. I was firmly anti-medication, so I knew this was the only way I could get any better.
I cried the entire hour during my first session. I had been overwhelmed for so long, just suffering in silence. It felt good to have somebody there to just listen and offer suggestions and explanations for everything I was going through. The first couple of sessions, I was a basket case of tears, just catching the therapist up on my twisted background. From deep rooted daddy issues to being a workaholic and perfectionist, we delved into it all. And don’t get me wrong, things didn’t get any easier. I would have to come in and talk about my attacks, what I felt, my triggers, how long they lasted and what got me back. It’s not easy talking about your own failure and analyzing it. Needless to say, it was a hard time. I was juggling 6 classes, a job, a relationship, while still trying to get a hold of myself. And this was all before the depression even hit.
If you have anxiety, chances are you’ve experienced it’s evil twin, depression. It’s like a double sided condition, once you’ve been diagnosed with anxiety, depression will likely be another issue you suffer from. For me, it was a while after I started therapy. My life felt out of control, and I was losing myself. I started to notice myself slip into these depressive states. There would be days where I didn’t get out of bed, no shower, no food, no company, just me, in my bed, lying in the dark. It was like a weird trance. Sometimes it would last for days, sometimes hours. Just a constant stream of negative thoughts controlling my every being. It’s like being completely and utterly defeated. Your not yourself, your so drawn into darkness that everything seems like a stretch. At this point, the only person that knew how bad it had gotten was my boyfriend. Whom I must admit was my strongest supporter, and to this day still is. He’s been with me in the midst of attacks, rushed me to the hospital, laid with me when I was too depressed to even get up. And he pushes me to be better, tells me I’m much more than this, and that I just have to stay positive, and I can get past anything.
In saying this, now having been dealing with this for years, if you feel like you have a problem, or you know you do and haven’t already gotten help, you should. It’s hard admitting to anyone your own personal thoughts. Thoughts that you think could possibly get you committed to a psych ward, but it’s better to be honest with yourself than to suffer in silence when you don’t have to. The larger problem is society’s perception of mental illness and it’s illegitimacy, which is quite absurd. If people were more accepting of it as a real disease, I think more people would come forward. Even I’m guilty of it to a degree, I just thought I was lazy for a while. Until my life got busy and I was still dealing with the same emotional issues….
I may not wear my anxiety and depression on my face, but know I’m a proud survivor. I struggle with it everyday, and there are still times when it completely consumes me. I know it’s something I’ll probably deal with for the rest of my life, but as the days go on, I learn more and more about myself, and my strength. I wake up and just keep pushing forward.
A little depressed girl from Philly
Ps: if u ever wanna talk, have any questions, or just wanna say hi, feel free to hit me up. I remember when I met my first anxiety/depression friend. It felt like she was my soulmate, someone I could truly relate to, and she still bae to this day 💁😘