Rock bottom. It is an ugly place. It is a lonely place.
It's been a very difficult couple of weeks. I supposed it is a good thing to know once you have hit rock bottom, because there is no place to go but up!
There are a few days that I am completely missing. I've spent countless hours in bed, simply because I could do nothing else. It was difficult even to hold up my own head. At the bottom, there are many emotional breakdowns, some with reason, some without.
Depression steals...it takes my energy, it takes my joy, it takes my words, it takes my smile, it takes my confidence, it takes my hobbies, it takes my friends, it takes away everything that I love.
And as if that isn't enough to suffer through, then the anxiety kicks in. It feels like I must be having a heart attack from the pain coursing through my chest. Sometimes I forget to breath. It makes living anywhere outside of my own four walls extremely difficult. Even the thought of going somewhere in town gets these symptoms revved up, palms sweating, shaking. But every other day or so I force myself to leave the house and go somewhere....anywhere....just so I don't become so afraid of leaving the house that I become a recluse! My family has done so much to try to keep our house running without me. Everyone is really tired of frozen pizza, sandwiches and ramen noodles because they have had to fend for themselves.
I've taken a medical leave from school for the rest of the year. Working just simply won't work right now. I have a long recovery ahead of me, and it is always slow.
So why have I decided to share all of this with you? Because I need to. There is someone out there reading this that needs to know that they can get through it. Trust me, there have been many days when I wanted to just run away from home where no one knew me and everyone would leave me alone. That's a typical thought for depression. But I'll get through it. And you....you who may be reading this and are thinking "this is me"...you'll get through it too.
If you are reading this and shaking your head and saying to yourself, "I don't get it". That's ok too. But just know...it is very real. And please count your blessings that you have never suffered through it yourself.
But then, please don't judge others who are experiencing it. I had missed a lot of work this spring because of anxiety and then depression hit as well. I told someone at work that I had to leave an hour early for a doctor's appointment. To which she replied, "You've already missed so much work and everyone has had to cover for you. When are you going to make up that missed time?" I had no reply, because if I had replied, it would have been ugly! Can I just add that this incident happened during a week that school was celebrating Mental Health Awareness? Did I feel supported, understood, or valued during that conversation? Absolutely not!
I'll keep fighting to get healthy, and I take great comfort in knowing that God is doing the same for me.
"The Lord will fight for you; you need only be still." Exodus 14:14