Thoughts from Therapy is a series where I talk honestly about my struggle with and recovery from depression and anxiety. My hope is to promote mental health awareness, and to let anyone else struggling know they’re not alone. See previous posts here.
Where did I go? Back into hiding. Back to bed.
I had feared how the holidays would be a nightmare. Would being surrounded by people all the time make me break down? It is just my family though, and I love them.
I get easily stressed out around Christmas, because I’m really bad at giving gifts. Or more accurately, somehow I think it’s a bad gift unless it’s the best gift they’ve ever received. But I’ve learnt something – that’s the devil in my amygdala speaking (seriously, if the devil was just sitting on my shoulder I would have kicked him away a long time ago). My brain tends to go immediately to the worst case scenario – like when I’m meeting a friend, and they’re running a couple of minutes late, it must be because they’ve been run over and died. I almost want to laugh as I’m typing this, because it’s so absurd and has never been the case (yet).
However, that’s still the thought that pops into my head. And I used to let it take over, making rational thought impossible. I didn’t do it intentionally, but I wasn’t able to stop it either. Through therapy, I’m learning to be more aware of my destructive thought patterns, and simply realising that my mind is spinning out of control.
Wait, wasn’t I talking about Christmas?
Mind: Worst case scenario – you’re just making people confused by your incoherent rambling, and they’ve already stopped reading.
Stronger mind: You have amazing blogger friends that read your blog. I know it’s really hard for you to write about your serious issues like this. But it makes you feel better afterwards. And you got an overwhelming amount of support last time you opened up. You’re not alone in this. Maybe everyone won’t want to read this, but that’s okay. You shouldn’t try to please everyone – that’s what brought you to this point.
This is a freaking rollercoaster. But my Christmas was more wonderful than I ever could have imagined. I felt so happy and energised – something I haven’t fully done in a long time.
Fast forward to January 4th. The day everyone went back to normal. So did I in a way – because I broke down. I felt like I had been run over by a truck. Not going back to classes like everyone else reminded me I was a failure. I didn’t immediately realise I’d started spinning out of control. And for a short while, it was pretty bad. But then I had to meet with my therapist again. (Sidenote: Are there any appropriate small talk subjects in your therapists’ waiting room? I think about this a lot). She helped me put things into perspective. Completely turned my mood upside down. I noticed how it’s getting easier to open up to her, talking about feelings and stuff. And I felt so empowered afterwards.
Now I will be going back to normal – my normal. Because this is my life, and I can’t let anyone else define what I should and shouldn’t do.
I don’t know how to be anyone but me, and I’m no longer going to try.
Thank you for reading and following me on this crazy journey! Free hugs for everybody (shipping not included)
PS I will actually start studying again in the last week of January, yay! Wish me good luck ♥