That’s what I feel like my life’s kind of been like for a while now.
Yeah, I’m moving forward-ish. Buying a condo was going in the right direction. But other than that? I felt like I was treading water. I was doing stuff, for sure, but wasn’t going anywhere.
And in keeping with this water motif… as time went on, I felt more and more like I was drowning.
This last year or so has been hard for me. In a time where I should have felt more freedom, having my own home, making it mine..I was sinking, deeper and deeper into that depression that I thought was under control.
SURPRISE. It wasn’t.
I have an idea of what kick-started it all. And there were things here and there that didn’t help at all.
And then, I know for a fact what made it all worse. My job.
It wasn’t always bad. It was quite pleasant, in fact, at the beginning. And for a long time, it was bearable. There were some frustrations about it, as there is in any job, but it wasn’t anything to get upset about.
However, about a year ago, it ceased being pleasant. It became something to “get through.” So that’s what I did. I got through it. I counted down until the weekends, I lost motivation to do just about everything because that required time not being stressed about the work and I didn’t have any of that.
When I did have time to not stress, I filled it with sleep. Or bad habits.
I started looking for new jobs. I started thinking the reason it was becoming more and more challenging to get up and go each day was because I was being punished, but for what, I didn’t know.
The stress dreams came back, constantly. The ones where I find out I didn’t finish a class in high school or college so my degrees and diplomas are invalid and I am not good enough or smart enough to be doing anything I’m currently doing. That does a lot for the self-esteem.
I started this “Me Project” and then laughed at myself because how could I focus on me when I didn’t care about me?
Sometimes I slept. Sometimes I didn’t.
I prayed, every night. For a break. “PLEASE, God, just let SOMEthing good happen.”
I felt guilty because I had a job, which some do not. I had money to provide for myself. People were dealing with worse things, with better attitudes. I was ungrateful and an awful person because of it. Maybe that’s why I was being punished.
Then there came, a few months ago, the scariest time. The time when I was driving my car home from work, and had the idea to take my hands off the wheel.
“What if I do that, take my hands off the wheel right now?” I thought. “I’ll hit the guardrail. And it’ll hurt. I’ll probably have to be in the hospital for a while. But ya know, I’d rather be in the hospital tomorrow than go to work.”
I didn’t go through with it, obviously, because so much more could go wrong and others could get hurt or I could die, and I didn’t want to die. I just wanted to check out for a little while, to get away from the stress.
I told one person that night. And no one else until very recently. Because again, I felt guilty. What did I have to be so upset about?
This past week, I was given the option to resign from my job, with a severance. And because of all that I just told you and more, I took it. And didn’t look back.
I currently do not have a job. I have a few weeks’ worth of money for bills. I had an interview immediately after I quit at a place I would love to work. I have leads on opportunities to earn some money in the interim. I have the support of my family, friends, all of my loved ones.
It’s been two days. And I can’t remember the last time I was this happy.
When I saw my therapist today, she said the difference from when she saw me a month ago was night and day. She didn’t suggest increasing the dosage on my medication as she had before.
I’m MOTIVATED. The past two days I’ve gotten more done than in the past month, if we’re being honest. Because I actually WANT to.
I joined a gym. And can’t wait to go back to it tomorrow because I no longer feel the need to crawl back into bed and shut the world out the second I wake up.
I have absolutely no idea when I will have a full-time job again, or where that will be. But strangely, for once, something like that doesn’t have my anxiety at Threat Level Orange.
I feel peace. Beautiful, wonderful, all-encompassing peace. I will be OK. Things will work out. I am not alone, or doomed, or a complete idiot. I am someone who put herself first, for once. Someone who finally realized life is too short to be stuck somewhere you don’t have to be. Someone who realized, maybe, the reason she felt so negatively all the time is because she was in something so toxic, she couldn’t see otherwise.
I’m using this time to explore my options, fine-tune my resume, focus on myself and my health in all aspects. I’m applying to every job that catches my eye. I’m waking up every day with a plan that is more than “just make it to bedtime.” I haven’t a clue as to what is ahead of me. And I am finally at a place where that’s alright.
Change is sometimes scary. Sometimes necessary. Sometimes wonderful.
I am currently, firmly, in the encampment of the latter. In this case, it is wonderful. And I don’t plan to waste it.