In the last year I have gone from being on a high to planning to take my life to just about beginning to see the light outside of the woods. This last month It has felt as though a fog has been lifted and my prayers answered. I have struggled most of my life with learning disabilities (dyslexia and ADHD) and my own mental health (which looking back is so hereditary and I didn’t recognise the signs of poor mental health).
It all came to a head this February. I had just celebrated a lousy Christmas. I was not frequently taking my meds as I couldn’t see any reason as to why I should. I began to doubt friendships and all types of relationships seemed strained (for me at least). From the outside I looked like a sociable person, who enjoyed family time and travelling. Inside I was dying and I didn’t know why. I had no one to talk to and no reason to feel low. I felt like if I mentioned how low I felt people would laugh and say that my problems were insignificant. It got so bad at one point that I began to get my affairs in order and planned how I would kill myself. I looked back at a diary entry from them and it just screamed that I needed help. I described myself as tired and feeling like I’m about to drown.
Then when at my lowest and pulling out of any interaction with people I attended a mental health first aid session. It was incredible to share some experiences with other but also great for me to have me symptoms reflected in my face. Literally from the day after this session I began to take my cocktail of medication and slowly began to feel better. I wasn’t taking it constantly (and I still miss the odd day – and they tend to be my worst days). I realised after sometime that I hadn’t been taking my medication properly and one of the side effects of the only one I was taking constantly was depression. So, I switched it up and balanced it all out. I slowly started to open up to staff at work that I felt comfortable with (but haven’t mentioned the part about contemplating suicide).
I have slowly been starting to feel more like myself even though most wouldn’t say that I am much different I definitely feel it. I am trying to improve my diet and exercise and feel better about me. The reason I have begun to accept why I was in such a bad space and open up about poor mental health is due to a male co-worker who it seems has been going through a real shit time. He though has found the strength to talk to someone and seek help. I am so proud of him for doing this.
I’m five months on from that feeling of being completely submerged underwater an I am making it out the other side. I know what I am not clear at all in the slightest but I am on the road to recovery and that is the most important thing. I still have the odd day where I slip and don’t take my meds, but I am coming to terms with that being OK, just as long as it isn’t something that lasts forever. What I have learnt from this is that everyone struggles at times and it helps to talk. It is ok to take meds for life! The only stigma and perceptions on mental health are runaway thoughts in your mind that you can change and challenge. It’s good to take time, reflect, talk and evolve.