I say this title in the most sarcastic manner because on the surface, today was horrible. If someone were to have watched me from sunrise to sunset they would be disappointed, as I was, until I began to think.
When you’re a fixer and a fighter, it’s hard to acknowledge small victories especially on days like today. You, like me, are hard on yourself when things don’t go as they should. Today, I did not have off and I did not take a personal day officially, but it ended up being that because I got almost no work done. Technically I couldn’t have because my computer had an IT problem, but had I had the energy to get it fixed that would not have been an excuse anymore.
I am depressed. I have suffered with depression since I was in middle school and it seems as though the dark days grow more crippling with age. Today was one of those days. Well, let me back track a bit. What I am sharing is not for pity or for praise but because as you know, I believe vulnerability is what leads to healing.
From my last blog post you know that I have struggled to figure out ways to move forward from the loss of last year. Since that post though, I have incorporated a few things in my life that have kind of helped.
- After living in my apartment for six months, I finally bought a comforter, sheet set, and a desk. I also actually set up my room so it looks like someone lives there. Before now, my room only had my bed (in the middle of the room) and a CHAPS chest I’ve had since I was a kid. I used grey sheets borrowed from my mom and a Charlie Brown blanket to sleep. It looked as though a six year old boy slept there maybe three times a week. Creating a space where I feel at home has been essential to my mental health.
- I set up a dry erase board in my room that says “You are…” and each day I force myself to write one nice thing about me. I realized I am so mean to myself. I call myself names and cause my own self to cry sometimes, so this was a move to force me to think more positively about me.
- This third point leads to what kind of caused this post. As many of you know I also struggle with anorexia. I started developing these habits in seventh grade and when I am stressed or lost in my mind it always comes back. I tried to make a step to cook more at home and have gone grocery shopping consistently this last month. Feels like a win, but Friday’s events showed me I may be doing a lot worse than I thought.
So Friday, I had the worst anxiety attack of my life. Only one instance can compare and that occurred at the end of first semester of college. I passed out in a communal shower after practically starving myself for days.
With Friday’s instance though, I had been trying to eat but could only finish half portions of everything I bought or made. I tried to have a smoothie if I couldn’t eat but that can only go so far. Friday morning, I had some pasta and broccoli but had forgotten to eat for the rest of the day. Around 7:30p I became light headed. I was stressed about a situation waiting and waiting for something to happen and even though it did, I had driven myself into a panic on top of not having eaten anything and began to lose sight in my left eye. I quickly made a smoothie and had a protein bar to lift my sugar levels but the pain was already there. The right side of my face hurt so much I began to cry. and I cried for about 3 hours on my couch in pain. I felt so alone and the only person I could talk to was my friend Kaitlin. She helped calm me down but that instance has really left a traumatic scar on me that is even effecting me today.
I woke up today idk when, but I laid in bed till 9 hoping there wouldn’t be many emails. I didn’t shower, didn’t wash my face, brush my teeth, didn’t even eat breakfast. Realizing my computer wasn’t working, I accepted defeat and decided to spend the remainder of my day on the couch. I had two redboxes I hadn’t watched yet so I put them in and tried to focus on anything but myself. It kind of worked, but around 1p I felt so bad for allowing it all to get this bad. I forced myself to shower, throw on some brows and head to Starbucks to be outside and around people. I fixed my computer (it was SUCH AN EASY FIX) but still didn’t want to tackle work, so I decided to do my taxes. At first, I felt bad for doing this on the job, but after finishing I felt good because despite this day I accomplished something.
That’s an important thing to acknowledge for someone dealing with depression and anxiety. Accomplishing anything is good enough a reason to rejoice in your sadness.
We and society can be so hard on ourselves for not consistently being as productive as possible, but sometimes we just need a day to not do as much as is expected of us. And that’s okay. Accomplishing something is enough.
My friend Asia really encouraged me to write about it all and Bri is someone who constantly encourages me to not be so hard on myself. My sister was on the phone with me when the anxiety attack began and has been present for so many of my falls. So being surrounded by people who love me even though they’re all far away has also made me feel safer than I would if I were really alone.
I still don’t think today was my best display of work ethic, but I needed it. I also needed to just let myself sit in this shit and to let my body recover from Friday’s episode. You don’t understand how exhausting an anxiety attack like that can be on your body. But after today, I do feel I can conquer tomorrow and that’s what matters to me most right now.
Thanks for reading ❤