Taking my trip this summer made me realize, that much more, how important my family is to me; how much I want to be a part of their lives and it doesn’t seem possible if I move… the internal conflict to move continues…
I decided within weeks of being home that I was going to give this winter my best effort. I was going to take this next year as a test to whether or not I could thrive while living in Minnesota. I was going to make the most of Christmas time with the traditions and lights, cooking and family time. I was going to celebrate the snow and embrace it with the same warmth and wonder as a child. I was going to ensure that all aspects of what makes me happy were given attention.
Well, the holidays are over, and I find myself struggling to fight off depression. New Years Eve seems to be an annual problem and low for me and this year I was in isolation.
I had been trying to do everything right: take your meds, take vitamin D and flaxseed oil (vs. fish oil), sit in front of your mood light, and not for only 15 minutes, but for an HOUR. But I couldn’t help the feelings of hopelessness and depression settling in New Years Eve. I had a full night of plans with friends, and it all went to shit. So I went home, and caved not only to depression but ED.
ED has only had few appearances in my time since I’ve been home, but he’s still there. That plan of continuing with my outpatient care with Melrose also went out the window. It was wonderful news that all my providers only wanted to see me once a month, but for some reason in my brain even once a month was too much of an inconvenience. The distance, gas money, and time had me come to the conclusion that it would be more stressful to continue the care while I continue to live so far away.
I know what you’re thinking, and I’m aware, but I’m trying to do everything I can to stay healthy; exercising 5 days a week for only an hour, eating regular meals and not restricting myself even on Christmas treats, and voicing the times when I did feel overwhelmed.
The only other time that I caved to ED was while I was in a accelerated class at the American Red Cross to become a Certified Nurse Assistant. It was intense to say the least. Seven hours of class, six days a week, and always at least 3 to 4 hours of homework each night. Thank God I had Megan to help me get through it, but even then, one night I became overwhelmed by my emotions and found myself in the numbing arms of ED. I am fortunate that the very next day I am back on board to not giving into ED, but recently it’s been harder to do with these feelings of overwhelming depression.
I found myself in a panic last night, “How do I change this? What else can I do??” I started to assess my days and where I was lagging. For one, I realized that I needed to STOP wearing sweatpants all day. While I was wearing them out of comfort and warmth, I was constantly subconsciously thinking about how they covered my body, how that used to be the reason I wore them and the deep depression I felt during those times of my past. So on the first of 2016, I knew that I could no longer wear them all day. I also knew, that I had to put more effort into my appearance and not because that’s what women should do, but because not doing it, was always closely tied to deep depression for me. When I feel well, I want to wear makeup and do my hair and dress cute because it’s fun for me. Now if you love going natural and that’s you, I encourage you to continue to be you!
I worked with Cassie that day and this time I got dressed in jeans, did my hair and my makeup and begged Cassie to see a funny movie to lift my spirits. She agreed, and we saw Sisters. Which really did start to lift my spirits, as did the real sunshine and after the movie, we went shopping! I know it isn’t necessarily healthy, but theirs a phrase shop therapy and it exists for a reason- because it works! By the end of the day I was feeling better, a lot better. I have Cassie and my own assessments to thank for that.
What I’m saying is, know your red flags. It has taken me a couple of years to realize what all of them are, and I might find new ones, but know them, tell others what they are, and take action.
It’s now Tuesday, and the depression has somehow miraculously lifted. I know that I will be okay, and I can confirm to myself that these feelings will pass. Sometimes all on their own, but sometimes you have to take action. I know that I need to help myself in other ways too. I need to remind myself that while I may not be exactly where I’d like to be financially, I am making progress! I am taking action to seeing a change.
College, that’s right, college at Century starts next week and I couldn’t be more excited!