I have to regularly practice self care. Whether this be going walking by the river, solo dates, reading, writing, watching anime, anything that calms me.
I have suffered from depression since the time of my mothers passing. I am going on 18 years of dealing with her loss. I’m much better now but it still rears its ugly head. When it does, it hits HARD. Depression is not the same as being sad. People will have you believe it is but those people have not experienced what real depression feels like. The feelings of worthlessness, of emptiness, the lack of interest in life itself. You find yourself at the bottom of a pit, in the dark, alone. For a while, I stayed at the bottom of this pit, an emotional wreck. No one noticed. See, I am really good at pretending to be just fine. In fact I’m an expert at it. Smile, laugh, all while I was contemplating suicide.
Then I saw a therapist. I tried the meds but I went from feeling like sh*t to not feeling anything at all and I didn’t like that, so I stopped. I started getting myself out of the house. I learned about blogging. I bought several journals. I began to write my feelings out. I learned how to sense when that pit fall was coming and things I can do to avoid it. I won’t say I have avoided the pit every time but I now know how to build a ladder and get myself out. I have depression, depression no longer has me.
Then came the panicky-ness. I don’t think I can call it a full blown panic attack, maybe anxiety? I have no idea where it came from or why but it’s been popping up lately. My heart rate will suddenly increase, I’ll feel uneasy, like I’m missing something incredibly important, I’ll feel on edge like something is about to go wrong or something terrible is about to happen. The worse part? I have no idea what sets it off. I’ve woken up from my sleep panicking. I have to talk myself down. Part of me feels like the world and the things happening right now are getting to me. I tend to feel deeply. Someone else being hurt, hurts me. Their tears are mine. My emotions run deep, even though I present a stoic facade.
This is why I have to practice self care. I have to take time to do things to make myself comfortable. I have to do things that make me happy. I try and decompress I guess. The world will break you down, this is my way to combat that. I stay away from the news, tune out the politics, ignore as much stupidity as possible. Whatever it takes to take that weight off of my shoulders. I have learned that taking care of myself is not selfish.
You should practice self care, too. Life is difficult. The ups and downs can damage you. Step away. Do that thing that you’ve been wanting to do. Go that place you’ve wanted to go. Read that book you’ve been thinking of reading. Take care of you. You deserve a moment to drop the weight of the world, even temporarily. You can’t build others up when you’re broken down. You deserve this. You need this. You’ll feel better, I promise. Take care of you.