If you haven’t read Part I, you need to go read it first. It’s right here. (But wow! I can get wordy when I don’t post in a while so it was too long. But if you’re reading these back to back it is still too long.)
So where was I? Oh, yes, I was telling you about being plunged into a darkness unlike any I have known before. The trigger was a broken heart but it was far from the cause. It was as if someone had actually thrown a dark, heavy blanket over my head. I sort of, kind of tried to share with some friends but it wasn’t a true opening up. It was more saying I needed a break and was stressed out. When I saw this was different, I reached out and emailed a friend who I knew went through this and has learned to deal with it and is open about it. (I just didn’t think I could or should reach out to my friends because everyone has something going on and no one needs my extra drama. Reaching out to someone who I know has been there and come through it seemed like reaching out to another addict. You go to those who have gone before. And? I really don’t want to be “that” friend.) After a few emails (and trust me when I say it was one of the hardest things to do to even email) many of them with me apologizing for “bothering” her and sharing my embarrassment about being so weak, she sent me an email I needed to read at that moment.
Never feel humiliated for reaching out. You are worth more
than you know and I’m here for you. Promise.
Many times since then I have pulled out that email and read and re-read it to remind myself that there is someone who knows where I am.
Much like when I confessed that I don’t want to talk but wish I had a friend’s hand to hold. One of my dearest friends sent me a message with no words. It simply had a picture of her hand. In case I needed to remember that someone was there to hold my hand if I ever needed it. A reminder she cared.
Many times when it seems the darkest, I stare at that picture and pretend I have not isolated and she really is there to hold my hand.
It’s a double edge sword having many of the people who know you best and are the very closest to you live so very far away from you. It is so easy to say you need some time offline and shut down connections. But then when it gets to a point where you are drowning or feeling completely alone, it is harder to reach out. It’s an ugly cycle. You need to be alone but alone makes things worse but you hear the lies of depression and don’t feel worthy of your friends so you pull further away and it gets darker and your feelings of worthlessness grow stronger and the lies are more believable and you pull even deeper into yourself… And on and on.
There were days where the hardest thing to do (and what I considered my biggest success) was simply getting out of bed and going through the motions of the day. It kicks my other two “bad guys” into gear: addiction and anxiety. I start really wishing I could just take something, just medicate myself to wellness. But I know better. And then anxiety tells me I can’t share what I am going through because I will be judged. I will be mocked. I will lose those I love. All the while depression taps me on the shoulder with the sing-song voice mocking “I told you so! Forever alone! I told you so! Forever alone!” (Assholes!)
Remember back when I told you as a recovering addict? How I don’t have the best coping skills? I’m learning. I mean, I sought out someone to talk to and we’re working through the issues that brought me to this point. From not really dealing with the death of my mother to the nervous breakdown my former “friends” slammed me to the ground with to ways of reaching out to the people I love so they can tell me what is a lie and what is real. (That last one is the very hardest for me.)
And I know that sounds absolutely ridiculous between an “obvious” lie and reality. How can anyone not know the difference? Well, sometimes it really is hard to tell. When everything to your core shouts that you are worthless and not worthy of the friends and family you have because look at what the former “friends” you had did to you, it feels so real.
I know the darkness will lift and the world will feel bright and light again. I know this. I just hope and pray that when it does, I haven’t pushed away everyone I love. I don’t want it to be too late. This? This is not the end of the story.
It is just the beginning.