I use this blog as therapy and to help find a deeper understanding within. Sorry, this one is not about knitting or reading.
I have a plea. If you know someone with a mental illness or struggling, please hug them. Let them know what they are feeling is OK. Because it may be obvious to you that everything is okay but within an unhealthy mind, it is a challenge to remember and a life saver to hear.
I speak from the heart. This past spring break I had an anxiety attack. Severe for me but probably everyday normal for someone else. Tuesday evening it hit. I was in peer panic. I watched a unsettling criminal show and could not get the images out of my mind. I could not think but at the same time I could not stop thinking everything. It is like a million trains coming and going in every direction with many stops along the way. Everything seems jumbled and time stops. Every minute is an eternity and every breathe is a chore. You are literally in a cage of your own thoughts and logic escapes.
After the second day, I knew I could not get out of the anxiety cycle on my own. I called my doctor and was seen. She was able to give me some meds to get the edge off. The next stages is the highs and lows. First, the meds worked and I felt like myself. However, in minutes anxiety came back and I crashed down low. These episodes continued for 2 days. My mind was so exhausted I would sleep over 12 hours. At some points, I was worried how I would continue to work, support a family or even raise my son. The anxiety was crippling and I was just trying to wade in the waters. A friend found an article that showed and explained the exact emotions and I found comfort. The next day was my sons 6th birthday and the day was about him not me. All day was a constant battle with staying excited, happy and hiding the anxiety from him.
Today is day 6 and tonight, in bed, I feel like I am human again. Part of the life I left 6 days ago. I can hug my child again and not be scared. I can close my eyes, breathe and find peace. As I write this and looking forward, I hope to read it someday when the high anxiety comes back. To remember I can manage and get through it.
If it was not for the support of my family, loved ones, coworkers and friends I am truly not sure where I would be. I am sure my day 6 would be completely different, alone and in a cold dark place. I am so thankful from the bottom of my heart that they understood and gave the support needed to overcome this burden.
I am sadden by the many individuals out there that are not so lucky to have the support I have. I have an opportunity at work to do good things and help students with mental health issues and I will continue to strive to help. We can get through it together. Bring awareness to mental health issues and reduce stigma. Everyone needs help sometimes. For anyone reading, I hope you do not have this struggle but if you do, I empathize with you. You are not alone and there is help. Do not feel embarrassed or hesitate to ask for help.
Suicide Prevent Line: 1-800-273-TALK
24 Hour Crisis Line: 1-866-4CRISIS (427-4747)