Give me an Oscar. Give me an Academy Award for acting like everything is fine and I have my life under control for the last four years. For tricking everyone into thinking that I don’t feel like absolute garbage most of the time for nearly 1460 days straight.
I look at pictures of when I was 18, just turning 19, and it physically hurts. That carefree teenager had no idea what was about to hit her; she was making plans, feeling excited about the future and her third year at university. Life was close to perfect. Countless friends, memorable nights, success in every aspect of my existence. But under-appreciative, always wanting more. Innocent, but demanding. Demanding that everything always goes my way. Don’t demand too much from life, be grateful for what you have. You can lose it at any moment.
And just like that, I had to bury my life during the summer of 2016. Writing “2016” makes me feel nauseous. My memories are strictly divided into “Before 2016” and “After 2016” – you can guess which part my brain tries to block out.
What happened to me? Everything started with sudden health problems on the first day of an important forum I was meant to be participating in. I woke up feeling poisoned, and that feeling has never left me since. I powered through the forum, went on holiday, returned, and decided to go to the doctor. She gave me the wrong treatment and poisoned me with heavy antibiotics. I still remember the fever dreams I was having the night I took my fifth dose, and the subsequent days of feeling like I was about to meet God at any moment.
The poisoning began to wear off, but my health was worse than ever. It took me four months to go to the doctor again to be prescribed the correct treatment, but the problems never went away. I have spent the last four years feeling poisoned and in pain, desperately searching for the next specialist that will save me from this nightmare. As soon as everyone figured out I wasn’t dying, it was just “take care of yourself and your problems will dissipate” from that point onward. Or even worse – “It’s all in your head”.
When a person feels sick and helpless for too long, parasitic thoughts begin to manifest in the brain. You can no longer think straight. Everything seems like a sick dream. Detachment. You start having thoughts that you could have never imagined having before. You become anxious, nervous, shaken. Now you are being fed more pills – this time for anxiety. Nobody knows the root cause of the problem. “It’s just nerves”. You have no energy to argue anymore, so you take them. Your initial problems have now opened up a whole new can of worms, and you can almost feel them under your skin and in your head.
Cigarettes become your best friends, and alcohol becomes your savior – but only for the night. Drinking to forget your problems? People have been doing it since the dawn of time. Trust me when I say it only makes everything worse in the end. I drank two full glasses of wine last night, again. Set myself back. Again. Just as things were starting to look up. But it’s happened before. Things start to look up, you are almost certain that you are escaping this once and for all, and then the downward spiral begins. Physical symptoms begin to manifest, followed by mental ones, and the cycle goes on. Or vice versa. You go from a casual smoker to emptying a whole pack of cigarettes in a day. More anxiety. More self-sabotage. More psychotic arguments that end relationships. Lose a boyfriend. Feel sick again. Go to work. Survive.
The last four years have been filled with sickness, mild alcoholism, chain smoking and failed relationship after failed relationship. My brain would tell me to find somebody new, somebody who can distract me from this mess. Save me, even. The worst heartbreak happened in October 2018. As usual, things were beginning to look up. I was feeling better. I was planning to spend the rest of my life with this person, despite not even being in a relationship with him in the first place. For someone with a high IQ, this train of thought is still an embarrassment to me. Everything else after that has been a distraction of some sort, which is something I can only admit to myself as I type out this post. Am I even going to post this?
On the surface, my life looks pretty satisfying. I have a good job, extra income on the side, loyal friends and an amazing family that never deserved to be pulled into this mess. But on the inside everything is spinning. Even when I start feeling better, I self-sabotage. It pains me to say this, but sometimes I wonder if I will ever get better at all. Physically and mentally. Everyone tells me I will, that there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. I want that more than anything else.
As someone with physical health problems and a personal Pandora’s Box of accumulated anxiety, I should never drink more than the tiniest amount. But I did it again last night, and somehow I regret it more than ever today. I don’t want to live like this anymore. I want to get better. I want to gather all of my willpower and drastically change my life. I want to be healthy again – physically and mentally. As I sit here in pain and hungover, I can just about imagine a different life for myself. I have tried and tried and tried. But maybe not hard enough?
Will this be the turning point? Will my doctor finally suggest the right treatment? Will I be able to clear my mind of all the miserable shit that has accumulated over the past four years? Will I finally be able to treat my body right for more than a couple of weeks? Something I should have done the second I received the appropriate treatment. Ah yes, one more aspect to add to the list of idiotic things I have done over the last four years.
Today feels different. Physically, I am a mess. Mentally – not much better. But our mind is a powerful tool, and so is the universe. I want today to be the last time I feel like this. I have to change everything starting from today and not look back. Not until I have reached a close-to-ideal state. Life may have fucked me over, but tonight is the time for drastic change. I want to be healthy again. I want to gain back my peace of mind. And I want to come out of this as a stronger person, and much more self-aware.
I want to look back at this post one day and realize that I am a completely different person. And if you are struggling, I wish the same to you – tenfold.
Dear Anon, thank you for taking the time to read about my troubles. If you are concerned, don’t be. I have a good family and a plan. This post was purely written to get everything off my chest.