I wasn’t going to post today, as not done anything really write about; but I wanted to write for some reason, so here I am.
Today has been a really chilled out day, relaxing with my husband and watching F1. I suppose the time gave me a lot of thinking time too. I thought back to how I was a year ago; in all honesty I was a mess. I was fighting my depression every single day, not admitting to myself or anyone, that something was wrong. I kept on going every day, ignoring it and trying to block it out. I didn’t want to be on medication and felt that asking for help wasn’t an option. I didn’t want to be perceived to be weak I suppose. Although, in hindsight (such a wonderful thing) I wasn’t being weak at all. I was being incredibly strong just by living each and every day. At the time though I felt like I was crumbling and my life was spinning out of control.
By August it got the better of me; and that’s when I broke down at work and everything went downhill from there really. I sank into the deepest depression I’ve ever experienced and looking back, I honestly don’t know how I kept going. I was so miserable and saw no future for myself at all. Every day was a struggle just to breathe, and I spent a lot of time hiding at home, and not talking to anyone. I shut myself away, feeling that I wasn’t worth knowing or loving.
It was the worst thing I could have done, but at the time was my way of surviving. I hated my own company and most of the time I spent asleep, as it was the least painful thing to do. I contemplated suicide on a regular basis, feeling that everyone would be better off without me. I was continuously signed off work as I just wasn’t strong enough to face it. I’d never been so low before and quite honestly it scared me. The thoughts in my head were some of the most horrific things I’ve ever experienced and all too often I came so close to giving in. The voices were at their worst also, putting me down and making me feel like the worst human being in the world.
It took me a long time to really embrace the help that was being offered to me. When I found my current GP though, things started turning a corner. I felt at ease with him, and slowly but surely I opened up. He referred me to the mental health team and I was soon having a Psychiatric assessment. That was also rather scary, and at first I did keep things back, for fear of being sectioned. But, I think they realised this, and persevered with me. I was eventually referred to a Psychiatrist and for group CBT. Between those 2 things, and the support of my friends and family, I began to make the small steps to recovery that I’d once thought were impossible.
Of course I had many a stumble, falling backwards to where I’d once began, but each time I’d dust myself off, pick myself up and carry on. I went through various medications, and was eventually diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder – Mixed affective state, on April 1st of this year. It had been a long time coming and suddenly made a lot of sense. Everything I’d felt and experienced had a reason behind it then, and even though at first the diagnosis freaked me out, as time went on and it began to sink in, I realised that it was in actual fact a stepping stone to new beginnings.
Since then, I’ve not really looked back. My medication was altered again to fit the diagnosis, which soon began to work and finally, for the first time in a long time, the voices were silenced. It was just me, myself and I in my head, and it was pure and utter bliss. Admittedly at first it was very surreal, and very quiet! But it was such a relief to get that peace and not have a constant battle going on inside of my head. I started to believe that I was a worthy human being and I did have a future.
By now, the CBT was coming to an end, and had really helped me. The change people noticed in me was apparently remarkable. I had a new way of thinking about things, and I didn’t want to give up anymore. I wanted to fight and I was determined to do so.
I’ve gone from strength to strength since then, overcoming suicidal thoughts, other negative thoughts, self harm, and previously alcohol addiction. My record is now 1 year, 6 months and 2 days sober, and I can honestly say I’m extremely proud of myself for that. Also, in 12 days time I will reach 100 days self harm free too. Another thing I’m totally proud of myself for. I’m also no longer ashamed of my scars, all they do is show my inner strength, and that I fought my way through a very tough battle. But I’m still here to tell my story and stronger than I’ve ever been.
I still maintain the belief that everything happens for a reason, and I was given that battle because I needed to find my strength and self worth. I believe that I have done so now. I am strong, capable and so much better than I was a year ago. No life isn’t perfect, I don’t think there is such a thing as a perfect life for anyone; there’s always going to be trials and tribulations to deal with, but I see a future for myself for the first time and I’m looking forward to it.
I feel relatively normal, if there is such a thing, and that I’m a worthy human being again. I think my struggles have changed me though, for the better. It takes sheer determination to get through what I experienced, and somewhere inside of me that determination grew and I found the inner strength to get through it. If you’re reading this and you feel the way I did, trust me when I say it does get better. You may not think that it will, I know I didn’t back then, but keep on fighting, holding onto hope and one day you’ll be able to look back, like I am, and see how far you’ve come. You’ve got the strength inside of you somewhere, you just have to dig a little deeper to find it and everything will be okay.
Well, I think I’ve rambled on enough for tonight, apologies if I’ve repeated myself anywhere, I just kept typing and trying to keep up with the thoughts coming out of my head!! Hope it made some sort of sense… so, until next time…!