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I am happily in love with a wonderful man for the first time in my life.  He is my best friend, my lover, my confidant and my soul mate. I love to look at his handsome face and picture our son with his eyes... our daughter with his lips... After all the years of emptiness, I have finally found the person who makes me whole and gives me peace. Perfect right?

Why does God have a way of sending you perfection only to throw a wrench in the game. See... my sweetheart lives 3, 600 miles away from me. Across an ocean. In a diffierent country. We see each other often for this type of relationship. We're even engaged to be married... where do we live after the wedding? There is a HUGE part of me that would like to move to his country, and there is another part of me that is scared to death to leave my own. Why? It's not my job. It's not the country itself. I will miss my family and the friends I have made, but I know that I will make new friends here and my family is always going to be my family no matter what.

The pressure I'm feeling from my father is a big part of it. Each e-mail he writes me he talks of how my fiance and I will be living in my home country... no question about it. I have broached the subject of leaving and I have been faced with intolerance. I have been told that my parents will be strangers to their grandchildren. I have been told that I will be making him unhappy if I leave. What about my happiness? My fiance is my happiness.

I do not love my career. I am lonely at my apartment. When I am back in my country, I miss my fiance more than I miss my family and friends when I am in his country with him.

The only thing I know for sure is that I am in love with this man and want to spend the rest of my life with him. I know that I could build a life in his country with him... but I swear that people are selfish. All of my friends keep telling me not to leave because they will miss me. What about ME??? Does anyone care what will make me happy?

There are two family members who seem to get it and their words run through my mind often. Make AMY happy for once. Don't live for everyone else... live for myself. For once. For the first time.

I just want their blessings. I want them to tell me that they will still love and support me no matter what side of the ocean I am on. I want them to tell me that my HUSBAND and I can visit whenever we'd like. I want them to tell me that I am a grown woman and can make my own decisions and choices. I want them to realize that it is my choice. I want them all to want my happiness no matter what it costs them. Is that too much to ask? Maybe... I don't really even know anymore.

I want to stop feeling torn up about all of this. I want to stop feeling all of their pain at losing me. I want to feel happy because I have finally found the right man for me. I know they are... just as long as I stay put and don't even try to leave and live my own life.

I'm beginning to wonder if my subconscious is trying to tell me something. I've been having the strangest dreams lately... the other night, I had terrible nightmares about brain-sucking science fiction alien crap that I hate. Last night, I dreamed that I was a student again, buying textbooks at the college bookstore again. Then I began to dream about all of the stories that have been jogging through my brain for the last five years.

 

A few years ago, I tried writing. I wrote two full-length novels, a great deal of one-act plays, and even a couple of three-act plays. I wrote short stories and a bit of poetry. I would write with every spare moment I had, and never tire of it. I felt that the writing completed me and gave me the creative outlet that I had been missing since I stopped acting on stage and began my grown-up life as a social worker.

 

Is my subconscious telling me to start writing again? Was it showing me that my imagination is still fresh with the wackiness of the sci-fi nightmares? Was it telling me to begin focusing on books again by showing me how even buying textbooks on Science could excite me  just because I love the way books smell? Was it pushing me back into my books and plays by reminding me of the ideas that have run through my head in the past?

 

Not sure... all I am sure of is that my subconscious is really trying to talk to me right now... and I'm trying really hard to listen and interpret what's its saying in the right way.

I had a nervous breakdown when I was 22... that was 11 y ears ago. I could not leave my house without fear of dying. I constantly thought I had a terrible disease that would kill me. My hands shook all the time. I couldn't eat. I couldn't sleep. My heart felt like it was beating out of my chest - ALL THE TIME. My life was out of control. People called me crazy. It got to the point that I thought I was crazy too.  I finally went to the doctor and he decided to test my blood. He said all of my symptoms could have been a thyroid disease too.

Three days later the doctor called me back and told me that there was nothing wrong with me physically. That I was actually making myself sick. The anxiety became a deep clinical depression. Although I couldn't sleep, I was tired. Although I couldn't eat, I was hungry. I could not leave the house at all. I worried about anyone else who did. My parents were supportive but began to grow weary of my condition. It was hard for them to understand why a healthy 22-year-old would deteriorate the way I had. I was getting sick and tired of feeling sad. Of feeling afraid. I had to do something besides suck down Xanax the way I had been. But what?

I took the first step and left my house. I took the bus to see the therapist.

I took the next step and got a job again. I began working at a summer camp for children.

It took me almost a year to feel somewhat normal again but I did it.

That was a long time ago but it stays with me every day. I have never fallen back into that type of deep depression again, but I do still suffer from health anxiety and generalized anxiety disorder, and I take Paxil to control it.

I write all this because there is NO shame in becoming ill as I did.

I write this because there is NO shame in seeking help as I did.

I write this because there is NO shame in acknowledging that I still have problems with anxiety.

I write this because there is NO shame in taking the medication that I need to function as normally as possible.

I write this because I want everyone who might read this know that I did crawl  my way out. It is possible. Keep holding on... life can get better.

My Life at 33 consists of:

1. A handsome, charming, kind, beautiful man who asked me to marry him... I said yes.

2. A career that others either admire or don't understand at all.

3. A loving family who supports me no matter what decisions I make.

4. An apartment that is not fantastic, but is all mine.

5. A dog who never allows me to be entirely selfish... which is a very good thing.

 

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