Hey all! So, it has been a VERY long time since I've blogged and I apologize for that. Life took an abrupt about face last holiday season and it's taken me until now to rather get my head and health sorted out.
Now, I'm not going to go into crazy personal details or anything, but life sure was full of a whole lot of downs there for awhile. I suffered a herniated L4/L5 disc in my back, went through a divorce, battled depression and anxiety, went to more funerals than I ever want to attend again and finally, just recently had back surgery. On the flip side, I self published my very first book, because there's nothing like being told you'll never amount to anything to light a fire under you. In experiencing all the crazy that I have this past year, I gained a new perspective on why I game and why I craft and make art. You see, I could have followed that white rabbit down the hole of despair but I had amazing friends that wouldn't let me.
I've had friends who've battled depression for ages. I also have a weirdly large amount of friends who have gone into the mental health field. Having said that, one would think I would have had a better understanding of depression than I learned that I did. I will admit that I was one of those people who fell for the crap that it is a choice that someone makes to be sad all the time. Let me be very clear here... it is not. It. Is. Not. And those friends that wouldn't let me follow that rabbit had already been there. I was also fortunate enough to be friends with real life, actual, certified mental health professionals who armed me with a holy hand grenade. The battle, however, is never really over. For some people, you see, depression isn't just being sad all the time. It's now and again. Sometimes, on the worst days, you can't get out of the shower. Some days, you hope your fake smile fools everyone. Some days, you cry yourself to sleep at night under the weight of EVERYTHING.
Being an empathic person, I've always felt things a little stronger than others. I was the kid who didn't need to be grounded, because I would ground myself. B's weren't good enough. C's were worth a panic attack. When my friends are happy, I'm happy. When my friends are sad, I try to take the sadness away. Like an emotional vampire of sorts, I've had it in my head that I could ease others' pain by taking some of it into myself. Rationally, I realize that's not how any of it works, but rational isn't really my strong suit. The problem with this way of life is that when you are in emotional turmoil, and then your friends are in emotional turmoil but you still try to add their pain to yours... well the cup doth overflow and there's no where for it to go. Add anxiety to depression and empathic emotion collecting and well, it gets super not fun. Anxiety attacks follow. Super. Not. Fun.
Time, however, does heal most wounds. Maybe not completely, and certainly not without scars but, you know what, scars mean you survived and so I will bare them proudly and I will do so without being ashamed of how they came to be. Yeah, some bad times were had but they won't get better if you don't entertain the notion that they can actually, eventually, get better. Just like the Crow says, "it can't rain all the time."
So yeah, this was a really long, roundabout way of saying, I'm back and we're going to talk about it. If I've learned anything from all of this, it's that there is healing in sharing. And in sharing, if I can help anyone be a little less scared of the road ahead, then my battle was worth it.
So keep your head up and keep plugging along. And take your wins where you can. Even if all you did was get out of bed today, you won a battle.