I did it. I finally asked for help. After years of battling with this beast & feeling like it was a losing battle I asked for help & I’m so glad that I did. What’s the beast you ask? Anxiety mixed with a whole lot of depression. It’s a beast that I avoided confronting for so long, but it was time….
A week ago today I finally saw a doctor solely for my anxiety. You know how weird it was for me, a seemingly peppy happy girl to walk into a doctors office & tell him that I was depressed & filled with anxiety? I guess it was weird because of the stigma we have about depression. Only sad, down on their luck, helpless people are depressed right? Because of the stigma about anxiety and depression I felt like I wasn’t allowed to be depressed because I live a very good life & God has blessed us with so much. I have learned over time that depression isn’t about how good we have it, but rather the inability to see that good because of how our brains are wired. I’ve never opened up about how there has been some beautiful sunny days where I’ve had a million fun things to do & a wonderful husband to do them with that I couldn’t physically get up out of bed because of this beast that was like a dark cloud and making it physically impossible to move because of how bleak it was making life look. I’ve never opened up about the physical pain I get from social situations, the thought of gatherings, & just about making plans in general. I’ve never opened up about my irrational fear of opening texts, emails, comments, or answering phone calls in fear of it being something bad. I’ve never opened up about how tense my body is at the end of the day, about how my chest hurts from being so tight all day, about how just about everything makes me worry from peoples thoughts, opinions, & an irrational fear of just about everything. I’ve never opened up about how on most days every task seems impossible & so nothing gets done or at least the stuff that needs to get done. I could keep going… it’s like now that I started opening up about my anxiety, it’s like word vomit about the beast I’ve been dealing with. I didn’t talk about it because I didn’t think anyone cared, it was easier to keep it to myself, & I thought it was just the way I was & that I was just being silly. Well, it is the way I am. It’s how I’m made. It’s how I function. But it doesn’t have to always be this way, & I’m not silly.
Some may say “Well, of course Liz is battling depression after seven miscarriages & seven years of infertility.” & yes, that has for sure made my anxiety and depression more prevalent in my life, but it has always been there. I can remember as a child not being able to define it, but this has always been there. Nervous everyday at school, anxious everyday about things kids shouldn’t worry about, & always having this beast follow me around wherever I went. He eventually grew into something that was unmanageable & now I’m seeking help to tame him & I’m excited to live a life without worrying about him daily.
After struggling with some pretty bad panic attacks the past few months & having some pretty dark days I finally decided to seek help. It was hard to admit that I needed help, but when you get to your lowest low there is no other option. I reached out to a friend who also deals with anxiety and asked her for a doctor recommendation & she was so kind to give me the info to an amazing doctor who is now helping me take care of this beast. He was kind, compassionate, & put into words many things I could never articulate about how I was feeling. One of the things I struggled with and told him was “why isn’t prayer working” & he kindly told me that maybe my prayers had brought me there that day to get the help that I needed… & I think he was right. I no longer feel ashamed, guilty, or embarrassed by talking about this. This life that we live is an amazing one & I’m excited to get my brain on track with the rest of my body & I’m excited to see if the next steps help. I’ll share parts of this journey with you guys & part of me feels like I need to share this with you guys because sometimes pretty photos and me sharing the highlights is amazing, but I never want you to think there isn’t a struggle I face daily & that I have to look past it to see and share the beauty with you guys. If you are feeling similar to me, I hope you can see the beauty through the struggle & that you aren’t scared to ask for help. You are not alone, it’s not your fault, & what you are feeling is is totally validated & there is help. Love you all. Thank you for being here through this entire journey in the highs and the lows. xx