It started at the end of April, at Maya’s birthday weekend at Harbin Hot Springs. Harbin is now gone. I cried that weekend, I was so full of pain and rage and I had no idea why. Helo seemed bewildered, maybe frightened and frustrated. Maya and my other friends were supportive but also confused.
I continued to rage, spiral, weep, for months. I took time off from work. I saw my psychiatrist frequently, went to support groups, started meds, got an emergency therapist, tried meditation and yoga, and still, I couldn’t breathe. I was having panic attacks almost every day. I felt overwhelmed by anxiety, this buzzing, humming, too-much-feeling crawling under my skin. I went up on medications while titrating down on others. I exercised. I tried to work. I saw my friends a lot. My family was incredibly supportive, my mother and sister taking turns visiting me. Helo was loving, and so, so patient, and (I think) had no idea what to do.
I woke up depressed, or I woke up anxious, I took benzodiazapines, I experienced suicidal ideation, I couldn’t sleep, I quit my job. My relationship with Helo was a wreck, our connection lost. I upped one of my medications myself, going on a hunch, and things started to get a little smoother. I no longer felt like I was drowning. I am letting go of the enormous feeling of guilt I have over breaking up with Gaius and Chief. I am settling into my new home in SF. I have such amazing friends. My pack. I’d go to TNG and just let people hug and cuddle me.
I realized a lot of things, sequentially building up til I reached something resembling insight. I’ve been running away from my feelings for so long. Projecting onto others (mainly Helo) the pain and guilt inside myself. I’ve used others to fill up the cracks in me, but people aren’t glue. I haven’t really been taking care of myself. I haven’t been paying attention to what I need or how I feel. It was too painful for a while.
Helo and I got into a real fight, unusual for us, about two weeks ago. Things somehow fell into place when I realized that even when I felt unspeakable anguish, I am still able to take care of myself. Something clicked. I stopped taking my birth control a week ago. My depression disappeared almost instantly. I still feel anxious, but it’s usually manageable. I have two internships and should have enough hours to take the MFT exam by next fall. I know that the most important thing I need to do is stop running from how I feel, stop lying to myself, hiding behind denial, and just let myself feel any pain instead of trying to pretend its not there. Mindfulness in the form of being emotionally self-aware.
I feel better than I have in over 6 months. i don’t know for sure if it will last, but I’m grateful and hopeful enough that I feel like I can write again, instead of avoiding this blog, avoiding any kind of writing for fear it will reveal things I am not ready to face. I want to write something specifically thanking everyone…. everyone has been so kind, so loving. I had no idea what amazing, supportive friends I have, until this. I have no words.