I’m honest when I’m angry. I get it. It sounds bazaar but the more people say certain things to me, the angrier I get, the more I understand that I need to move onto the next. I’ve heard this statement way too much in the last few months, “Maybe you should get on medication.” I know it comes from a good place. I get it but it annoys the piss out of me if I’m being perfectly frank. And, yeah, it makes me angry. I am in full support of medication if you need a helping hand. I understand how it works. I appreciated the assistance the ten years I was on it. At that time during my life, I needed help, the edge to be taken off. I went through something horrific and it messed me up. Then, I had a kid and she was too important to not get the help. And to defend that statement, I am important as well but I didn’t have the strength to do the work on myself and be a good mother to her. So, I chose her. I could wait.
I don’t want these words to be misconstrued in any way. I am pro medication when it is right but I feel that, for me, it cannot be the first thing I go to when my anxiety gets out of hand or the depression wants to take over. I went on Zoloft when my daughter was a baby because of something that happened when I was 18 years old, because I was raising a kid on my own, because I didn’t have my shit together. I went on Zoloft because I was at my wit’s end with the demons that I carried. I was on it for ten years with a bottle of Xanax as a back up if my head got too crazy. And then my life changed. I had a husband, a life partner, this man who became my best friend who was there with me, standing next to me. For the first time in my life, I felt like I could breathe. I wasn’t terrified I was going to lose everything if I closed my eyes. So, I started to learn how to breathe to make myself feel less anxious. I let myself smile again without tricking myself into some falsehood. I started doing the work because I wasn’t on my own anymore. I stopped taking Zoloft and it was a hell of a journey to get off it but you know what? I did it. The demons of that night when I was 18 years old, the immense amount of pressure of being this kid’s mother, this enormous weight that I carried on my shoulders started to feel like I could handle my life. I was confident and bright and light. Sure, I still battled my anxiety and depression but I knew how to control them. I knew that I was going to be all right. It wasn’t a pill that fixed me. It was me. I did that.
My daughter is grown now. She’s living her own life 6 states away. She doesn’t need to be the reason I exist anymore especially when I want to do more than exist. I have the time to do the work on myself, to sit down with these demons and kick them out once and for all. I can sit with my fear, understand that it only has as much power as I give it. It’s not fun and it’s been hard but I’m doing it. Because you know what? If I fail, I get angry and I get right back up because it’s what I do. And part of having a clear head of the issue is understanding where a lot of this has stemmed from. With that understanding, I am clear about what direction I must take. I am fighting for me for the first time in my life, not for my kid or my husband or anyone else. I am fighting for me and for the life I know I can have. I don’t need to put myself on medication to function because I want more in this life than that. I’ve just functioned most of my life. It’s time to get rid of the demons, not stick them in a closet for later on. Demons eventually find their way out. My answer is not to camouflage them. It’s to set them free. My answer is me, to stand up on my own two feet because it’s what I do. Sometimes it just takes a little extra strength to get back up. For me, doing this on my terms is the only way I know how to do it. I am not fooled to believe that it will all magically go away but I do believe that if I change my life in a positive way, I’m giving myself a fighting chance to find me again. I understand my triggers and I am clear on what I need to do. My answer isn’t a pill. It’s giving myself a chance to succeed my way.
**This by no means that medication should be used responsibly for those who need it. Please talk to your doctor if you need help to find the best plan for you. And if you need help, please reach out! You are not alone.