I won’t go in-depth about who I am in this post, but let’s just say that this is not my first rodeo. And that’s the thing I want to put out there, you can fail as many times as it takes to succeed.
Earlier this year, I started a lifestyle change that included healthy eating and regular exercise in a gym. I felt great! I felt alive. I enjoyed every second of the four months that I was at the helm of my destiny. I couldn’t get enough–until I did. I felt so empty inside. What had once made me feel powerful and capable now made me feel weak and inadequate. First, I struggled with the gym. I couldn’t keep up with my weekly four hours anymore. Then I couldn’t hold on to the healthy eating. I saw my ship sail on without me.
April was my darkest month. No words of encouragement could shake me out of the melancholy that had overcome me. I recall crying at a restaurant, as I tried to explain to my sister, the overwhelming sadness that had suddenly possessed me. I manifested all the courage I had and told her that I couldn’t continue. I was depressed. My environment was saturated with pressure and unrealistic expectations from outside sources. I wasn’t aware of any of it until many months later, but I felt it. There was no way that I was going to come out alive having been so oblivious to it.
My ship sank. In my head I had failed–there’s no other way to put that. I let my sister, who was my unconditional support system and exercise buddy, and myself down. It’s taken a lot of personal growth and forgiveness to come to the realization that it wasn’t my fault. Depression is a very real threat to any endeavor. It can come from anywhere and last as long as it wants. I have no health insurance, so I had to go through it by myself with no medicinal help. It was tough. Eventually, my depression led to panic attacks* that culminated with a visit to the hospital. I have never been more afraid in my life than when I was suffering through those attacks. A sympathetic touch from a loved one became invaluable to me.
In mid-September, I was finally able to overcome my personal demons–to a degree. In all this time, I had maintained my weight, but I’d fluctuate more than about five pounds up or down. By October, I felt almost invincible. I ate whatever I wanted because until this point I had. Unfortunately, it started to catch up to me. A month later, I was up an additional 15-20 pounds. I didn’t recognize myself. I finally reached my breaking point. I had to stop and reclaim myself. So yesterday I decided that enough is enough. I have used up my last excuse. I plan to continue with my healthy lifestyle and hopefully encourage and empower a person or two to do the same.
Until next time,
*I was not diagnosed with a panic disorder and tests from the hospital visit were inconclusive. This is my own self-diagnosis. I’m not a doctor, but once I started treating the symptoms of panic attacks, they went away.
- Taboo: Anxiety & Depression (contemplatingsensibility.wordpress.com)
- What Panic Attacks Teach You About Life (thoughtcatalog.com)
- Putting a stop to stress induced panic attacks (nyrvabadette.com)
- New Beginnings (elizathinksallowed.com)
- To Tell or Not to Tell (newfoundfitness.wordpress.com)