You probably noticed I’ve been neglecting the blog, not posting as often, in fact, not at all for a couple of weeks. Not often I write a post this personal, but as I said before, I am a believer that beauty is mainly what is on the inside, and the last months have been dark and far removed from beautiful.
I always considered myself an anxious person – you know the type that suffers in anticipation, that will do various things to prevent a scenario that might not even become reality? Yes, that is me.
This anxiety, though, alway propelled me to do things better – it made me revise that tiny bit more (even though I didn’t need to) and in the rare occasion, it made for good plans B and C when A failed.
But it never interfered with my life. To the point it started to cripple other areas and I started having panic attacks, anxiety attacks, crying uncontrollably and in public type of attacks. A feeling of sadness, hopelessness, desperation and loneliness so deep it was bigger than myself. I barely recognised myself – I’ve been a faded, colourless version of myself, that is drowning. Everything seemed to be too much and I was struggling. I became short, unkind and sometimes hurtful to people around me. I am not like that. That wasn’t right. And that made it all even worse. There were three months of feeling miserable.
Few things make me forget about it. Mainly the gym and blogging. I stopped socialising – me, the social butterfly that is guaranteed to appear in every party. I didn’t want to see people. Getting on the public transport made me sad. Sitting at my desk at work made me sad. I procrastinated what I could, and felt drained most of the time, fuelling myself with little energy gained from physical activity and doing things related to the blog, especially writing, taking pictures and going a few events.
I’ve been getting treatment with CBT and felt better – the will to do things picked up again, my mood was better most of the time and I could see this working for me.
I still don’t know the full extent of what is wrong with me emotionally or the reasons (although I’ve been working on that an moving on the right direction), it will probably take a long time. One trigger for sure was my hair, that has been falling and the biopsy came with a scary result, even though the consultant dermatologist doesn’t agree with it, as I lack physical symptoms, this threw me back on square one and I became an emotional mess once again.
This affected my work a bit – I started making silly, little mistakes (that really annoyed me, as I usually don’t make those), I had little patience, crying at my desk, the toilet, commuting. There were some horrendous few weeks where I constantly felt on the verge of a breakdown. But I kept working.
So I decided that, instead of dealing with all my problems at once, I will tackle one at a time and as well as I can. I cannot struggle anymore. And I will find myself again. I will.
After a few breakdowns the doctor signed me off from work. Then I made a solid plan. And followed it. In the first couple weeks I threw myself deep into the first step of my plan (which was the decision to focus on one problem and work hard to better it), work I had to do within myself. I concentrated, I corrected myself, I found additional psychological support, I stayed close to my family. I did things which reminded me of who I really am. And slowly things started to look more positive, I finally had hopes of better days, I had moments of peace of mind, I was able to clear my mind. I was actually thinking clearer. Then I started to
Four weeks on, I am calmer and the obsessive behaviour is subdued; the main issue has faded and although I know it is not gone, I know I can deal with it. And I know I am string to deal with the other issues I will tackle later.
It is still a daily struggle, but I believe I found that self that can do things, that won’t let herself fade again. And I won’t.