29! BEATING SEVERE ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION

Some would argue I threw everything away. Some would understand I redeemed myself at 29.

My mental health was going down the drain and I had a moment of realisation I was going no where so fast right before my 29th birthday. Something had to change and it had to change fast.

I had a therapy session and it is flabbergasting the sort of things we talk about in therapy. Only professionals, people dealing with similar situations or those that care enough to be close to them would understand.

I am healing from my severe anxiety and in today’s therapy session we discussed my milestones and it’s unbelievable how much progress I have made in my healing. I must say, I am proud of myself. I do still have a long way to go but boy haven’t I come so far!

I have been able to go grocery shopping on my own without having reoccuring panic attacks or making an absolute fool of myself fidgeting with my bank card, like I just held it for the first time and can’t make out what it’s use is when trying to pay for my groceries. I have been able to withdraw money from an ATM machine without spending hours at home researching how it’s done even though I have done it countless times before. I have even got on a bus and travelled a two hour bus journey on my own without having a heart attack. Those are absolutely huge milestones! I know, for a person that is not dealing with things the way I am, it could be difficult to understand how simple ordinary tasks can be such a big deal. But if you have had anxiety in whatever severity or if your loved one has had it as bad or worse, you would understand. It’s not easy.

Severe anxiety is very hard to beat on your own so yes, you’ve got to have the will to fight for yourself, to dare to get out of your comfort zone, irrespective of how uncomfortable. So ask for help. I know, people will hink you are being overly dramatic but again chances are someone will understand.

I am a work in progress. I do still research things normal people just go out and do. I am terrified. I still panic when someone screams, I do still cry when someone screams too. But am healing from my trauma. So can you.

I’d say, months ago I was desperate to be in the place I am today, less afraid, less nervous, less worried that everything is going to go wrong.

I have been in therapy for quite a few months now and I’d say it wasn’t easy to walk into a room with an absolute stranger and pour my heart out in a language I have spoken for a couple of years or so. The relentless question in my mind was always, “how did I end up here?”

I’d hate to describe myself as someone that’s “got issues”. But look normal people do not go around getting terrified at the mere thought of setting foot out of their home in the mornings. Or they actually do! Because look, am just a normal woman that’s walked through fire and came out a little scorched. Yeah, most definitely flawed but hey, it’s absolutely possible to heal from the anxiety and go easy about life whatever the circumstances maybe. So yes, seek help. Talk to someone, a professional, a friend, family. Chances are there’s someone that’ll understand your struggles. The thing is that you’ll be judged. Yes, be ready for it! The people around will be exhausted by you but there are those that will understand, take your hand and let you know you are not alone.

With anxiety, you’re probably terrified of simple things, things that are most probably unreasonable to others or perhaps even things you can’t put a name to. You’d be in a place where when someone asks why you don’t like to go outside, you don’t have a reasonable answer, you can’t explain it. And chances are, you’ll be misunderstood. You could end up despairing also as to whether you’ll ever be able to go easy and just live.

I know only too well the sheer frustration that comes with sitting around waiting for dark and the crowds to clear so you can step out for a walk because you were too terrified to do it in daylight while people were still on about their lives. Agoraphobia is a real thing! Good news is you can still live with it. With the right help, you can manage or beat it. I do live with it, so could you. Of course I still struggle with things. Am a nervous wreck in open places, in public transport but I still do it. Oh boy, I have come a long way!

Anxiety can be infact debilitating but its manageable. Am no expert in mental health so I come from a place of someone that has and continues to walk that scary path. So where to start!

If your anxiety gets in the way of living a decent normal life, you want to see a professional. Go to a therapist. They’ll know what to do, they’ll help you. There is no shame in asking for help. I have been there, done that. I was embarrassed to tell anyone when I first started therapy. What will they think, what will they say. But look you’ve got to understand that people will always have opinions about you and chances are those opinions arent always the best. So what if? What if they judge you? There is one person that lives your reality, your pain and your struggles every waking moon and that person is you. When you start to understand that you need to love yourself, put yourself first and stand up for yourself irrespective of who agrees or not, you will throw right through the window the opinion of others and care for yourself. I was called selfish because for a while my speech changed from vulnerable and terrified to I need this, I am going to do this, I must have this. While it frustrated me for a while it is what kickstarted my entire battle against depression and anxiety. I now write about my experiences because I was once that scared girl wishing I could meet and talk to someone that knows what it is like.

So I do not know who needs to hear this but I manage! Heaven knows I struggle. I build one thing, another comes crumbling down. I beat one milestone, bigger challenges hit me in the face, but hey, here I am doing it still! So can you! One day at a time…..

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FINDING HEALING POST DOMESTIC ABUSE.

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