I’m not going to sugar coat it. 2018 has been really hard and I struggled this year more than ever. But, I think everyone has ups and downs. I don’t think anyone really has an even playing field 24/7 and if you do, call me and tell me how you manage that.
I want to start off with the heaviest topic of my 2018. Mental health. If you’ve followed my blog, by now you’ve read about some of my struggles with manic depression and how much it effects my life 24/7. It really took a toll on me this year and looking back, I really don’t know how I made it. I have had many sleepless nights/days and then many nights/days on end where I would just sleep constantly. If you’ve never experienced depression, consider yourself blessed but if you can relate to any type of depression, I’m so sorry. Except manic depression is super extreme, depending on what end of the spectrum you fall under. I have struggled with it ever since I can remember. On top of that, anxiety, which I remember having my first anxiety attack when I was 4. Around July, I just knew something was more far off with me than just what I was experiencing and that I needed more help than just once a week therapy. Medications would always seem to work temporarily and then other symptoms of struggle would emerge to the surface. On top of all of that, I was super disconnected from my emotions. I could never have a deep conversation about how I felt or even tell you what was bothering me. All I would ever feel was sadness and anger that was just built up over time. I was at my breaking point. And so were the people in my life but at least they could get away from me and find some peace. I, however, could never escape it.
So I decided to reach out for more help. More intensive treatment. I went to an outpatient clinic for four weeks. Monday through Friday, 9am to 4pm. I was aware of emotions and my feelings for all day. Being so aware 24/7 is extremely tiring, I must say. But those four weeks were incredibly eye opening and if given the opportunity again, I would take it every time. Not only did I start to find peace within, but I met the most incredible people who saw the real me and loved me just the way I was. I didn’t really tell anyone what I was doing, or why I was away. I didn’t tell anyone why I wasn’t at work. I don’t really know how that conversation would have went or how I would’ve explained. And I don’t think I owed anyone an excuse. I was embarrassed, more than anything. But I am forever grateful for everyone who did know who rooted for me and was supportive. I couldn’t have made it without you.
Being back and getting into a really good routine, I have really started improving on the good that was already inside of me. With a new diagnosis that I’m not ready to share, I feel more at peace. I learned some really great skills and have also kept in contact with a few people I went to classes with. They are an amazing support system, and I don’t have to explain too much for them to know how to deal with me.
For anyone who knows me knows that I’ve struggled with my weight my whole life. It fluctuates like crazy and I feel like I can never get a hold on it. I was really working on it for a while and documenting it on here but with my mental health being the way it was, I really let it fall to the wasteland. And I’m really okay with that because my mental state was and always will be my biggest priority and now that I have a better grip on that, I am definitely looking forward to a better diet and exercise routine. I’m excited to change my lifestyle completely. This is one of my New Years resolutions, like so many of us. 🙄
My self esteem in 2018 was rock bottom. I think a lot of that had to do with my mental health, and of course my weight issues. It’s always been hard for me to look people in the eye and I really want to work on that. I am constantly comparing myself to others and I think social media plays a huge role in defining what women should look like. It’s super difficult. Also knowing what I’m going through mentally is hard to wrap my head around anyways. I just feel different and I am always super cautious on having a relationship with anyone (platonic or romantic) because I don’t know how to explain myself or even express my emotions. After those four weeks though, I feel more connected and less afraid. I am slowly able to feel more.
This is a super sensitive subject with me right now. I’ve always had many acquaintances but my circle has always been super small when it comes to friends and it has a lot to do with reasons above. I never felt connected or comfortable with any including myself. I told my truest friends about what was going on when I went into treatment for four weeks and some were super supportive and others really didn’t seem to care. It really surprised me that some of the friends I consider myself closest with really never called or checked on me. It hurt a lot but made me reevaluate my relationship with them. It also surprised me because some of my friends that I told that I haven’t seen in a couple of months/years but still keep in really good contact with checked on me the most. That made my heart really happy and really goes to show you that distance doesn’t make a friendship any less than a friend you have that lives down the road.
My Sister Getting Married
The best thing about this year and the highlight of my year was being able to watch my sister get married to the love of her life. I can’t tell you how many happy tears I shed that day. I might be biased BUT my sister truly was the most beautiful bride I’ve ever seen in my life. The whole day was beautiful and I wish I could relive that day again.
All in all, 2018 was definitely my rock bottom but has brought so much renewal and change, in a positive way. I’m even more excited for 2019 and the abundance of changes it will bring me. I know this will be my year to shine. After all I’ve dealt with, I know it’s only up from here.
What were the ups and downs in your life this past year? What are you looking forward to the most in 2019?