March 20, 2013. One of the worst days of my life... and it made the next three years possible. It's the day I admitted that I'd been struggling with depression and suicidal thoughts and checked myself into the hospital.
It wasn't like those types of thoughts were new; I'd had them on and off since high school. But they were getting worse. Thoughts were forming into plans. So the best (and scariest!) thing for me to do was admit that I had them--to friends and family, not just to therapists. (Although I was in between therapists/psychiatrists in March 2013, so I wasn't even doing that.) I try to avoid feeling, and outwardly, I just want to seem happy so that I'm not a problem or source of stress for other people. I still struggle with these things, but it's less of an issue than it once was. (Exhibit A: this blog, where I am really open about how I'm feeling! :))
Five days in the hospital in March 2013 were followed by a new therapist (the one who just left her practice, actually), group therapy, exposure therapy, and somatic healing. In my last appointment with my therapist a few weeks ago, we revisited my intake paperwork from 2013, and even though I feel like I've stopped progressing, it's so clear how far I've come from that terrified girl whose main coping skills were beating herself up and thinking of escape. That therapist was incredibly helpful in teaching me how to deal with my anxiety and depression in a healthy way, and now, it's time to work on some other things patterns I'm stuck in, like avoidance.
The work is never done, but at least I'm still here, trying. At least I still get to play the game. And while I'm feeling stuck in some areas of my life, the things that I've tried and done over the past three years are nothing short of amazing... and they did not at all seem possible on March 20, 2013. You really never know what is ahead when you think of giving up. <3