These days I can’t manage to finish a post. My mind scatters and sometimes I’m even scared to put down into words what it is that’s actually being going on with me.
I’ve always been an emotional kid. An over-thinker and a hyper-sensitive. Prone to feeling everything all at once. And taking other people’s feelings and making them my own.
Last year I met someone that changed my life completely. Changed the way I view things, the way I view myself, the world around me, my relationship with other people, my relationship with myself.
I realised that my profound need to get approval from the males in my life has always been carrying me through. And when I was often not getting it, I would become disappointed to the point where I would find refuge in compulsive eating. My safe place was the mouth. Just satisfying the belly, thus suppressing and neglecting the painful feelings behind this action.
The past year has been a painful but also a valuable lesson for me. It broke me. Literally inside and out. I had to deconstruct my Self, in order to build it up again and then lose it once more, only to start back from scratch.
What I’ve come to understand is that everything is a process. A journey that never ends. And every day is a new day to fight the good fight one more time. But you have to do it, one day at a time. It can’t be done any other way.
The 12-step rooms have taught me that you can’t think your whole life in a day. You have to live today for today. And the more you’re not letting go – anger, sadness, ego, pain – the more these things will eat you bit by bit on the inside.
Again, this is a painful process, and you can’t learn how to let go in a day. What I can do today is start. Take one small step and say to myself “It’s going to be okay. You’re doing great. You’re doing the best you can, today. And what you can’t do for yourself, God will do for you.“
I’ve had a rocky relationship this past year with God. It went dark for a while. And some days it still feels this way. My communication with God was sullied. By pain and darkness. I let the monsters inside, and they consumed me, and some days they still try to get in, and sometimes they even succeed.
I won’t lie, I haven’t yet come out of the other side. And for the first time in my life I understood what ‘mental illness’ actually means. Now, I have even more empathy for those who cannot explain in full sentences how muddled things can get inside. Now I can relate to how sometimes you can’t get up from the floor, you just can’t lift yourself up and go on with your day. How you wish that this vast emptiness could swallow you into its dark release so that you just stay there in complete silent despair.
And then you get these bloody panic attacks, which are the exact opposite from depression. Depression throws you down, makes your mind an enemy and tries to kill you one day at a time. And anxiety is the cherry on the cake; sweet and cunning, it grips you slowly, unexpectedly, from one minor word to a single innocent glance. And it’s like a tornado. It comes down swirling and fierce, not knowing how to escape it or come out of it. And you can’t do it alone.
To make things worse is having someone next to you who just doesn’t seem to get it. Someone who thinks you can just snap out of it. Alone. And that all of this is your fault. I’ve had that. And I’ve had frustration. And anger. And ego. Around me. All. The. Time.
Let me tell you something from experience; you can’t just snap out of it. You cant remember to breathe or get a grip. Not when your mind wants you dead, and when you’re body seems to be more of an enemy than a friend.
And the only thing that works is human touch, a hug. The power of hugging is one of the most powerful things in the world. It can soothe your soul down, it can connect your soul, it can make your entire entity feel in total harmony and peace. As long as it comes mutually and is filled with love. Otherwise, an unwilling hug, becomes a hostile and unsafe environment, a dark cave that someone else wants to lock you inside filled with monsters. This unwelcoming hug is nothing more than the opposite of what one needs when having a panic attack. Sadly, I was offered one of these hugs once too many times. And of course, instead of soothing the attacks, they grew bigger and wider. They got out of control, to the point where self harm would play a big role in the attack and there was a lot of confusion and fear involved. A lot of incoherent mumble jumble on my part that I simply to this day do not even have the faintest clue where they are coming from.
All of these are dreadful things to experience. And unless you experience a panic attack you don’t know how unbelievably helpless you feel at that moment, how scared and in how much agony your body and your mind is in. Words do not seem to be formed in a coherent way, you seem to lose control of your limbs and your entire body function. All that exists is fear. And fear has such power that it can swallow you whole. And the only thing to drag you out of this dark abyss of an attack is if someone is there to pull you out.
You cannot do it alone. You need help. The point is to understand that you are not alone. I have yet to believe in this. Sometimes it doesn’t feel so lonely. When I find the courage to speak to people and open up about what’s going on. But most of the times, it still feels lonely and scary.
Like there’s this dark cloud hovering over my head ready to shower its negativity onto me, dreading its outburst. This is how it feels now. I’m at this stage. Still struggling to get up and walk out of the house every morning.
My dog has been a tremendous help. Animals are in general. And babies. Well, as I’ve not have a baby around to sooth me, I have a dog. And she’s been like God sent, especially when I am feeling this hopeless fear gripping every fibre in my body.
One day at a time, I am here today. Trying my best, today. Just for today, I will try to make it through the day. One step at a time. With wobbly feet and a fearful heart that tells me that God loves me, even when I don’t want to believe it.