It starts with darkness.
You never really understand the dark cloud analogy unless you live it. Feel it. Breathe it. Become it.
I love the way you make me feel
When I’m with you, I feel like I can conquer the world
Achieve bigger and better things
Your dreams are just as big as mine are
Can you imagine what we could accomplish together?
You could be Jay-Z and I could be your Beyonce.
Together we could build an empire
I hate the way you make me feel
When I’m without you
I don’t feel like I am of much value
Just a notch on your belt
In your bed
You said you were different
You showed that you could be
But then why do I question everything?
We both said time is precious
And I would hate to be wasting it
I am not one for taking risks.
I think it’s because my dad was a very anxious person and would get nervous at just the thought of me riding my bike to school.
I play it safe. It’s how I have always operated.
The funny thing about depression is that it consumes you.
I lied. It’s really not that funny.
I haven’t had a panic attack in months. I can’t remember the last time I had one. Maybe it’s not something I like to keep track of, so how would I remember?
All I know is I feel like I’m having a small one now. And it’s scary and it’s frightening. It consumes me.
I have tried everything: my breathing techniques, closing my eyes, counting to ten, looking at my peripheries in the mirror, talking to a friend, changing the subject, you name it.
I’m shaking and my heartbeat echoes in my head. My first tear just broke and I’m stumbling to catch my breath again. I’m writing this in hopes that it helps: that it forces me to focus on typing rather than break down into a million pieces.
School is the trigger this time around. It’s that time of year where I have a midterm, an essay, and two assignments due this week. I need to do well on this upcoming midterm because I did poorly on the last one. I need to do well on my essay because I am doing so well otherwise in the course. I need my marks to be good so I can go to grad school in the future. I don’t know what my future holds and the uncertainty is consuming me from the inside out.
All I want to do is cry. A good cry would help me right now. Instead, I feel numb. I feel emotionless. My vision is spotty and I want to just fall asleep. Just for a few minutes. But I can’t. When I rest my head, the panic sets in again. I have too much to do. I need to get some work done before my meeting tonight. I feel like I have chosen to allocate my time in the wrong ways. Last night I went out to the bar. I justified it by saying I wouldn’t realistically get much work done after 11pm anyways, so I might as well go out with friends. When I say it out loud, the reasoning seems sound. When I sit here right now, my body shakes at the thought of wasting my time.
I feel so weak. I have come such a long way since my battle with PD started. Am I just losing all over again? Maybe the battle was not even won in the first place.
Today’s blog title is inspired by “Going Away to College” – Blink-182
Just a moment of weakness – if you’d call it that. When the thought crosses your mind, it won’t escape you.
You’re paralyzed by the thought. You sit there, frozen in time in space, or so it seems. You don’t want to say the words, but they’re resting there on the tip of your tongue, “he’s gone.”
It’s not that you don’t think about it (because really, when aren’t you thinking about it), but rather you’re thinking about it more. Suddenly.
I can hear him saying, “why do you bother coming home if you’re just going to sit here and do homework?”
My goodness, that used to bother me. I used to resent him for even asking that. I mean, I came all the way home to be in the same room as him. Why was that not enough? Now I’d do anything to hear him say those words because the anger I felt would not be nearly as great as the emptiness I feel in my heart right now.
My thesis professor asked me today how I was doing in terms of losing my father.
You know, today has been the long time in a long time that someone has asked me that. Not that I want to be asked this all the time (because I really don’t), but it made me feel as though it was still valid to be going through the grieving process three months later. I told my professor I used to call my dad every day. He said that must be a difficult adjustment. I nodded. I didn’t have him to call when I got off the plane from NYC. I didn’t get to tell him about my trip. Or tell him I won a bursary. Or tell him that I’m stressed about school.
I miss how he would buy me wonton soup when I was sick or make my mom get it for me. I talk to him as if he’s still around, sometimes. I miss his snarky comments. His stupid jokes. And his big hugs.
So before I either go back to studying or to sleep, I’m gonna lay here on the couch, just for a moment, with one of his favourite blankets and just breathe. Showing weakness (if you’d even call it that) is not a bad thing, for it is from weakness one can build remarkable strength.
When I was in my second year, I took a class called Abnormal Psychology. At first, I loved it. I was so excited because finally I was going to take a course that interests me more than any other course I have taken.
The prof had a disclaimer at the beginning of the term: “Don’t try and diagnose yourself based on the symptoms you see here. Odds are, you will think you have something when you don’t.”
It wasn’t until the section on anxiety disorders when I started feeling uncomfortable being in class. I would feel as though the words he was saying were about me. I stopped going. At least until that section was over, anyways. The funny thing (and I use that loosely) was that I had not been diagnosed yet. So I made the brave decision to go to the doctor and well, the rest is history.
This year, in my fourth year, I am taking a class called Mental Health. On the first day of lecture, I started having the same feelings I did in my other class. I felt as though when my professor would say things like, “No one really knows what it is like to be someone with a mental disorder” and “there is a negative stigma surrounding having a mental disorder” that again, the words related so much to my life. So much, in fact, that I began to feel uncomfortable. My negative, intrusive thoughts floated in my head.
Had I been the same person I was two years ago, I would have either dropped the class or stopped going to class. Seeing how much I have changed and gotten stronger really opened my eyes that day. It has been a long time since I have had a panic attack. I couldn’t even tell you when the last time I had one was, that is how long it has been.
I have been so worried that with the feelings of loss finally sinking in deeper that I would start to feel my anxiety more than ever. Luckily, I have not. With the start of a new and stressful semester, I worry that being overwhelmed will evoke negative reactions but I feel confident that I will not break.
So here’s to smooth sailing in 2015!
Today’s blog post title is inspired by “Brain Damage” – Pink Floyd