21 July 2014

You are not alone

In recent months I've blogged about my depression and anxiety, my diagnosis as being on the Asperger's spectrum, and beginning new journeys.  And as I began packing and the sorting of my physical life, I've done the same with my mental life.  And I realized that I keep giving...this demon, this darkness, this despair, whatever you want to call it more power than it deserves because I haven't talked about it.  Not as much as I could have and not as much as I should have.  So I'm going to change that now.

I don't want to tell the whole story here, in part because some of it is still being written, and in part because this just isn't the right forum for all of it.  One day perhaps...I've lived with depression and anxiety all of my life.  I didn't know that's what it was called nor was I ever formally diagnosed with it until two years ago this August.  While it bothered me a few times a year, I could feel it coming and prepare myself and have it go on after a week or so.  Two years ago though it came and it stayed and it didn't go away.

I began seeing a counselor who has helped me more than they will ever know.  I've taken medication that has helped.  I've sought advice from friends, coworkers, and complete strangers some of which was helpful and some of which was not.  I hurt people that I care about and they hurt me in return.

I've been dealing with a bullying situation for quite some time now, where a person that I trusted threw everything that I had told them back at me.  That I hadn't progressed as much as they wanted with my depression.  That I needed fat clothes.  That I needed to rethink my career because I wasn't cut out to be a librarian anywhere.  That they wouldn't give me a reference.  And more.  Things that were more cutting and hurtful than anything else I've ever been told before.

And now I get to the part where I can count on one hand how many people know what I'm about to say.  Towards the end of April I came as close as I've ever come to breaking completely.  I was so distraught over some things that were going on that I composed an email that I was going to send out to a group of people.  Before I did so I shared it online, in a private place to ask what they thought.  And the people that responded thought it sounded like a suicide note.  It wasn't meant to be that, but...at the same time it was.  I wasn't looking to cause harm to myself or anything like that, but I didn't want to be around anymore.  I wanted to just vanish.  And be gone.  A handful of folks reached out to me and one in particular kept messaging me until I called my counselor, went to see them, and then got back.  And then kept touch with me over the next few weeks to see how I was and to help me out.  I took time off to get my head back in place as much as I could and made plans to how to improve my situation.

And we come to the present.  I'm feeling better, but still struggling.  Not what I was a few weeks ago, but there are still days that are rough and hard.  But there have been people that have continued to stand by me and help me when I need it.  To remind me that I am not alone.  So that in turn I can help remind others that they are not alone.

The world keeps spinning and I know that there are people that will sit with me and say nothing other than they are there.  And that I am not alone.