New Year

So it’s Day 5 into the new year – technically, as I type this it’s Day 6 but since I  don’t count a day as ending until I turn in to bed, it’s still Day 5 for me – and I’m happy to say that I’ve had an eventful holiday/semester break.

Ever since Christmas at Chérie’s family’s, we’ve been inseparable. Below are some photos of us to highlight our stay together. She left for home a few hours ago and this apartment has never been quieter. After she left, I thought about how perfect this woman is in my life, and how she fulfills all of my needs, and more.I can’t imagine how my 2016 would’ve ended had she not entered my life.

I also thought about how great of a positive impact she’s had on my mental health. She’s been very encouraging during all my lows – and I discover that I am able to be vulnerable with her, and allow her to see me at my weakest, as well as allow her to help me. Much of what she says is still hard to believe but with repetition, I’m starting to build the habit of listening to her and to trust her. It’s been quite an experience.

I realized that having her around for the holidays, the impact of my depression has definitely been dulled. I still get into my low moods but they’re not as bad as they were back in the period of April – October. I see how important it is to have a significant other who understands my struggle as well as woks hard to help me in my walk.

Between the two of us, I have a more severe anxiety disorder, while she has a more severe ADHD, so it really works out well because I provide for her the coping skills that she lacks, while she provides me the coping skills I lack. She’s always able to see past my anxiety and help me see past it as well, while I’m always able to remind her to do the things that she needs to do (having poor short term memory is pretty typical in ADHD sufferers).

I know I’ve talked about Chérie a lot lately, and it seems like I can’t talk about anything else but her. However, if you have someone who’s impacted your life so drastically, I don’t think you’d be able to stop talking about them either…

In any case, I’m going into 2017 with more positive feelings. I hope that things will continue to go smoothly – I can’t help but feel like after such a shitty 2016, I need a breather, and I need a year that won’t keep pounding me down.

I hope everyone else’s year started out right! I hope that I will be able to have more time to blog.

Positive and Productive

I’ve been having some major financial difficulties following the divorce (because I have a lot of credit card debt plus having to pay for a car as well as for rent), and as a result, I am technically working 3 jobs. That leads to my inability to focus in school because I’m staying up late to finish homework and assignments while not having enough time to absorb and process what I’ve been learning.

This leads to a lot of anxiety because I don’t know what my next paycheck will look like or how I’m going to manage everything. I feel like someone who is out of time. I feel like a candle burning from both ends, trying to juggle everything.

I had been contemplating filing for bankruptcy to get out of all the debt but at the same time, I know that the consequences are pretty dire following a bankruptcy. I was suicidal yesterday because I was overwhelmed by these things and these concerns.

So as you can see, my life is a series of domino effects. Stuff I can’t control but try to and then end up freaking out over everything.

Anyway… This morning, I went and spoke with the Health Promotion Coordinator of the Office of Health and Wellness, who is one of the people who helps run the Peer Educator program that I’m a part of. I was told by one of the Peer Educators that she has a background in financial related topics.

In our meeting, she revealed to me that she has an MBA and that she has experience in financial wellness. So I went to the right person. For the next hour and a half, she told me all the things I need to know to maintain a healthy financial state. She also taught me how to create a budget. After the hour and a half, I felt calmer. I felt more organized because she had helped me put all the fragments of “To-Do”, ideas, and thoughts into a more cohesive whole. Though I’m still in debt, and still going to struggle, suddenly, I feel a little better about my chances of making it through this semester without killing myself. All because someone took the time to help me organize my thoughts.

After that meeting, I headed to the room that had been built for student organizations to have their space in. I was supposed to be at the Peer Educator’s office – to maintain office hours in case any student wished to visit for information on the 8 dimensions of wellness.

When I got to the Cube, the name of the space that the student organizations are based at, I was ecstatic to see the space that the Peer Educators had been given. We had the corner of the Cube which meant that we had plenty of sunlight streaming in to the space.

hwppe_cube-1

Our bulletin board filled with information on various health topics.

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We got a really big space with comfy chairs!

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I was really excited to be at our office. (Sorry for the crude Photoshopping skills. I did it to hide the name of my University).

I told myself as I sat in the office that today is going to be a good day – why? Because I’ll make it so. It turned out to be exhausting but productive, and positive. I was able to finish my Discrete Computational Structures assignment, and while I was at it, I got to tutor someone in Calculus for Business Majors which is actually not a subject that I’d ever taken but since I’d done Calculus, I was able to tutor her. (The only problem I encountered was the fact that she is very attractive and it’s so hard to focus when all I could think about was how cute she is…) I also got to spend time with a couple of my coworkers who were also students at the same University I’m attending. It felt good, especially since one of the coworkers is someone I really relate to and see eye-to-eye with.

Overall, I had a pretty decent day. I was on campus until 11.30pm though because I’d lost track of time while working on my Discrete assignment. I think if I could have more of this kind of days, I’ll be able to pull through this ridiculous hump.

Tomorrow, I’ll see S. I wonder what our session will be like…

 

Quick Post Therapy Session Update 

I will post more when I’m more awake but I just wanted to say that I had a decent session with S today – one that ended with him being pleased that I surrendered the paracord bracelet that I was going to use to hang myself with on Monday, and that I asked him to make me promise that I won’t buy more knives. 

To be honest, though I willingly surrendered the bracelet, deep down, I didn’t want to. I wanted to have a choice. But I felt that I was a danger to myself. 

On Monday, I got drunk because I was triggered – the trigger led me down my usual spiral of negativity and ended with me trying to cope with alcohol. In the midst of my drunkenness, I wanted to hang myself. It was a good thing that when I got home (my manager and coworker drove me home), I passed out. When I woke, the feeling had passed so I was safe. 

So, despite my desire for a choice, I also felt like I needed to help S protect myself. He told me last week that he’s worried about me and he’s worried for these moments where I might lose control and do something that will be too drastic or serious to recover from. 

I realized that I asked for help today. I’ve been trying to do everything myself for the longest time but today, I asked for help. It feels like a huge step for me. 

I left feeling anxious, confused, distressed, and needy/clingy as I always do post-therapy. Today, even more so because S wanted us to go back down to just one session a week. 

He’d said, “When there’s a lot of anxiety and fear, a lot of times the thing to do to manage that is to gradually do what you fear. And that’s kinda how we’re going about building that resilience. That way the child will come to understand that she’ll be okay and the adult and the teen will take care of her” 

He gave me the choice to disagree with his decision but I didn’t take it because he was right. I need to face that fear.

For a year and a half, I’ve been clinging on so tightly to S. I never want to let him go. But it’s the equivalent of me hanging on to the rock in the middle of a raging river while looking at the shore longingly. At some point, if I want to get to the shore, I’m going to have to let go of the rock and make my way there. 
S assured me again today that whenever I want to talk to him, he’ll be happy to talk to me. So the rock will always be there whenever I feel too afraid to continue. I could look back with comfort knowing that it’ll always be there for me should I need it. But once I start to make the journey towards the shore, I’m going to start feeling more confident and stronger. And once I get to the shore, I’ll be happy that the rock provided me with the strength to do it and I’ll be comforted to know that if I ever find myself back in the river again, that the rock will still be there to save me. 

I’m also stable today because I took care of myself. After the session today, I was anxious and I didn’t have a focus. I didn’t know what to do. I was indecisive. Finally, I took my skateboard out and went skating around my campus. I wanted to familiarize myself with the pavements because I intend to skate around campus during school. I ended up having a really great time. 

Skating Around Campus

I was so excited and giddy inside. I kept squealing with glee as I skated around. 

Then after that, I asked a friend out for lunch because I needed to feel a connection. It was a great time at lunch. Right after lunch, I messaged my coworker and close friend to see if he’d be okay with me hanging out at his home. He told me we could hang out for 2 hours. I ended up staying there from 2.45pm to midnight because we kept playing video games. 

Although I ended up not getting the haircut I was supposed to, and not having the dinner that I thought I would, I had an amazing time because I felt that great connection – even if all we did was just sit on the couch all evening and tapped at our phones as we played. I feel so comfortable around N that it really does astounds me. I’m usually awkward around people but he and I click really well. 

So, I took steps and practiced some coping strategies. I think the child is slowly allowing the adult to take care of her. It also seems like she’s starting to let go of her desire to hurt and kill me. It’s slow but I feel like it’s happening. 

I just hope now that I can last an entire week without seeing S again. 

The Secret Of Becoming Mentally Strong – TED Talk

This is a very important TED talk to watch. In it, Amy Morin instructs people on how to become mentally strong, in order to weather any emotional upheaval in life.

I know I for one need to do the things she shares. It’s not going to be easy.

The things she shares are very painful for me to hear. I know I needed to hear them and I’m still resistant to the idea of improvement and change. I’m so terrified of it even when I know how much I’ll benefit from it.

The intensity of my suicidality has increased again lately due to the extreme stress that I’ve been put under through life events that I can’t control and my job. I told S today that this weekend was the first time in 3 weeks (since I started on Zoloft) that the suicidal thoughts had been this intense. He’s concerned – as am I.

After watching this TED Talk, I knew that one of the things I could do is to change my mental habits but change is terrifying. I don’t want to do it and I hate myself for that, which ironically is one of the things that a mentally strong person wouldn’t do i.e. disparage themselves or put themselves down.

Sigh.

I think I am at the point where I just don’t want to go on which is why I don’t want to do any of the good habits that Amy suggests in this video. I am just too tired to keep fighting. I am tired of all the pain and suffering. I guess I’m throwing a pity party for myself, aren’t I?

Why I Don’t Want Happiness

Is it crazy for me to say that I don’t want to be happy?

To me, happiness is a vanilla. So bland. So boring. So… Fleeting.

The opposite of depression is not happiness. It’s vitality.

I want something more than happiness. I want inner peace. I want to be able to wake up every day without the “mother” screaming at me for being lazy and pathetic, without the teenager being angry and angsty, without the child feeling fearful and needy, without the rational adult feeling like she’s going to collapse at any second from all the abuse and exhaustion of holding everyone together. I want to wake up every day just being me – with all parts intact and at peace. The “mother”, proud and happy to have a great “daughter”, the teenager, calm and energetic, the child, secure and safe, the rational adult, strong and steadfast. All of those parts of me – not happy, but rather stable.

I want to live. Underlying all of the death threats that I have given myself, underlying all the hopelessness, the despair, the pain… I am not afraid of death and would gladly welcome when it’s my time, but I don’t want to rob myself of that time. Despite the suicidal thoughts that’s ever creeping closer to being more than just thoughts, I want to live.

I hope that the next time I’m in the throes of despair and suicidality, I’ll come back and reread this. I can see a little glimmer of hope shining through, especially after today’s session with S. I can see it. It’s a glimmer, but it’s there.

 

Update: Oh wow, this is my 200th post on here. The timing is impeccable!

Just What I Needed

It comes as no surprise that this week has been very difficult. I don’t think it’ll ease up until next Friday when my finals will be over.

However, that said, I did receive a very heart warming message from a friend whom I really count as one of my closest friends now and whom I also look up to as well.

She had messaged me and told me “I look up to you a lot! You’re mad inspiring”

It really meant a lot to me to hear that and to know that I’ve been able to inspire at least one other person in my life.

It was very uplifting and it really was something I needed.

Setting A High Bar

I learned today while in the shower that I am only as weak as I set my bar to. If I raise my bar and strive to reach for it, then I’m only limited by how high that bar is. The reason I thought of that was because I was thinking about how I could’ve done MATH111 which is a lower level than MATH153 and had I done that, I would’ve still been convinced that I’m no good at math.

Then I thought about how I’m planning to switch my major and how I want to do something more challenging. I now know that I *can* do Interior Design if want to and I *can* do anything I put my mind to.

It was a great epiphany.

I have a feeling that I’m beginning to climb out of my depressive episode. It has been a hellish 8 weeks and I’m starting to see the light.

I’m at work now so I won’t be able to post anymore but I might expand on this later.