When Shit Hits the Fan: A Survival Guide

Alright, so this isn’t a survival guide per say and I apologize if I put out the wrong impression. I’m just very particular about my titles. I like them to have a certain gusto to them so it was either this or “When Shit Hits the Fan: A Cautionary Tale” which isn’t what this post was really either. If I were to be honest it is a mix between the two, but “When Shit Hits the Fan: A Cautionary Survival Tale/ Guide” did not have the same ring to it.

The title is neither here nor there though so moving on. This topic is actually just something I unfortunately have a lot of experience with. The cookie doesn’t always crumble the same way for everyone and I think that is very important to understand. These are just a handful of insights and experiences I have had being a bottom rock dweller.

What got me thinking about this is my most recent personal disaster. I am not going to touch upon the details of said disaster (for now), but just how  I’ve been dealing with it. Normally I power through my crises by immediately picking myself up again and with cheesy motivational quotes. Cause if I believed that  “Something will grow from all you are going through, and it will be you” – Google Search for Motivational Quotes, then I would be ok.

The only thing that was growing though was the times i’ve used my strange optimism in the face of adversity. And what I realized was that I used it to cover up the actual deeper meaning of my problems. And guess  what? The cycle would continue. I’ve always prided myself on my resilience. I’ve overcome so many low points that it almost stopped phasing me. I was so used to a cycle of picking myself and falling back down that I almost didn’t realize that each time It happened the road blocks were getting bigger and bigger and so were the consequences. Turns out people are less sympathetic towards your plight once you hit 30-something. 

I am a big supporter in doing whatever it is ya gotta to get through what you’re going through. If it’s corny sayings and chocolate I say make your insta a beacon of hope and buy yourself some goddamn chocolates. I prefer cheese, but that’s just me…who am I to judge? If you need to mope and not be a person for the day be the best non-person you can be! Cry it out if you need to. Exercise. So many options, and none of them are wrong. What I am trying to say is…it’s a process and everybody’s is different.

What caught me so off guard this time was that my process had changed. I wasn’t jiving with the whole light at the end of tunnel thing this time. Everything was hitting me much harder, like I was the last kid left on a losing dodgeball team. This is the first time ever I dealt with my anxiety and depression by staying in bed for basically an entire week. I tried telling myself it was okay and it just must be what I needed, but while I layed in bed my responsibilities kept piling up and my mood stayed unwavering.  I didn’t feel okay with this… plus my body hurt. Who knew staying in bed could make you so sore!?!

But you know what, I got through it. It took a lot longer but I am finally feeling somewhat like myself again. During that terrible week I actually allowed myself to feel the emotions I had been avoiding and instead of posting quotes about self discovery and overcoming obstacles, I was actually working towards those goals. Did it take a little longer? Was the path there a little different? Most certainly. Am I out of the woods yet?  No…but at least I’ve stopped walking in circles.

My big takeaway for this post is don’t over concern yourself with the process just work towards your progress by any means necessary.

❤ Sweeney

 

Transitions, Resulotions & Insurance Lapses

So I know it’s been a while since I’ve last written a post. It seems like whenever I have the most the write about the less likely I am to actually do it. That’s anxiety for you though I guess…

A lot… and I mean a lot has been going on recently. I guess I’ll start out with letting everyone know that I got a new job. I’m using the term “new” loosely however since I’ve been there now for over 2 months. It’s funny how much emotional weight we put into jobs. I was initially so excited for my “new beginning” and new career path. It’s exhilarating going through the application process when the outcome is you actually land the job. I’m not trying to say I am no longer happy with my position… I’m just trying to say I forgot how much an emotional and mentally taxing experience starting a new job can be.

At my previous job, I was fairly open with my mental health. I felt very supported by peers and comfortable opening up to them. Ultimately though, it just wasn’t the right position for me. Going into this new opportunity I was conflicted if I wanted to be as open about anxiety as I had been in the past. Would they look at me differently? Would they think I was less capable of my job duties? Would they wonder why the heck I would choose to share something so personal to me? Should this be something I even bring up in the workplace? Where should the line be drawn with this sort of thing anyway?

I decided it wasn’t something I wanted to bring up. I also decided to make my Instagram private because I wasn’t sure what somebody from work would think if they stumbled across my blog. Even though I pride myself on being open on the subject, I decided that this time it was something I wanted to hide and that it was something I that I was embarrassed about.

About a month before I left my old job I had started to take serious strides to take back control of mental health. I was seeing a therapist weekly and we had plans to reach out to a nurse practitioner to evaluate/ adjust the anti-depressants I was on. She was super supportive when I told her about my new job and I told her I estimated it would probably be about a month before my new insurance would kick in. Then I found out my estimate was wrong and it was actually going to be at least three months…..whoops.

But whatever, I had this. I felt really confident and strong going into my job duties and I was for once really excited for my future. In the midst of training, I had completely forgotten my anti-depressants were out of refills and subsequently stopped taking them. I might’ve touched on this before but NEVER ABRUPTLY STOP TAKING YOUR ANTI-DEPRESSANTS. Right, when everything in the workplace was getting it’s most stressful my brain decided it was time for seratonin gymnastics. Needless to say, it was not a good look. I was crying on the daily, I felt completely out of control and I felt completely ashamed.

That’s when I decided to bite the bullet and go to my local medi-center just in order to get a refill. I didn’t care how much it cost because I literally felt like I was going insane. But the damage was done. At the exact time, I needed to be at the top of my game I became crippled with self-doubt.
I’m not going to go into much detail about how much worse it got… but trust me things got way worse than I could ever have imagined.

And on that light-hearted note… let’s talk about New Years! I cannot believe I’ve been writing in the blog now for over a year. Time really flies when you’re having a panic attack. No, but in all seriousness, I am currently in a much better state and ready to kick some 2019 ass. I’ve grown too accustomed to going through bouts of tremendous lows, picking up the pieces and then trying again. While I still admire my resilence in such situations, my goal this year is to stay in control of things and not let them control me. Honestly, I think this is my toughest resolution to date. And before I end this (and wait another 300 months for a new post) I just wanted to thank everyone who read and kept up with my blog this past year. I didn’t even realize how many people actually read this until they would come up to me at gatherings and tell me how much they relate to what I write. Those type of reactions is why I keep trying to be open about my life and the struggles I go through. I hope you all have a great 2019 and if you’re not, feel to reach out and tell me why I am always here to listen!

Breakdowns & Breakthroughs

I know it is a bit cliche’ to call your life a roller coaster, but there is a reason for it being such a popular metaphor. I however, would be more inclined to call my life a ferris wheel. I live in this constant cycle of slowly building myself up, to eventually finding myself back at the bottom and wondering how I got there.

At least I’m consistent, I guess?

I also have the incredible talent to continuesly pick myself back up and rebuild after completely falling apart. It might not be the healthiest of skills, but it is still a skill and I have never once let myself stay at the bottom. It gets exhausting though and truthfully very embarrassing. You don’t typically find ferris wheels in the privacy of your own home, you find them at very public and often well attended areas.

My breakdowns and breakthroughs are always on exhibit and that makes me feel very vulnerable, especially to judgement.

Sometimes I think people feel like I have more control over it than I do. People have seen me get my shit together before so whats so bad about my life to make me constantly have these lows? And honestly… I don’t know and maybe thats the problem.

Don’t get me wrong, of course there are some things (*cough* many *cough*) I would like to change about my life, but a lot of the time there is very little rational to my emotions. It’s like I’m living in my own reality that nobody else can see. And unless you have experienced an anxiety disorder or depression it is really hard to understand. I wish it was easier to explain so I could stop feeling like a complete freak show.

Maybe some of you will reach out to tell me I’m not, so in advance… Hey! thanks for caring, I really do appreciate it. Deep down though, even if secretly, I’ll always think it. But who isn’t a little crazy anyways, right?

❤ Sweeney

(image credit https://berkandd.deviantart.com/art/Scary-Ferris-Wheel-199858606)