Ups and Downs
22 more weeks and I’ll graduate with another degree. It seems so close and so far away at the same time. I wish I could be more excited for what’s to come, but right now I just feel anxious. A list of things that make me anxious are paying for my student loans, finding a job, making enough money, managing my family relationships, feeling incompetent, not feeling good enough to do anything right, and so on.
I know that some of these are valid worries and that some of them are things that I have been insecure about for a long time. I feel like I have had some really great weeks and some weeks that feel more sad than happy. I find fleeting moments of happiness, such as the warmth of the sun on my pillow during an afternoon nap, the way my mother says “I love you,” and wearing a pretty dress in my favorite colors. Then I have hours where I just cry and cry and cry until I feel like retching.
I fear I’m becoming dependent on my boyfriend for emotional regulation. He gives me such a safe space to be myself that I can’t help but say “I know” when he says it is okay for me to be sad sometimes. When I’m in my room by myself I tear myself down by thinking how stupid or silly I am or I just get stuck in the repetitive cycle of thinking that I am so tired.
I am doing very well in school. I am learning so many hands-on skills that I wouldn’t have dreamed of being able to do one year ago. I have put myself in situations that I was terrified of and I came out alive and proud of my courage and persistence. I know that I will come out of this, but it is always hard no matter how many times I pull myself up from the ground.
I looked back on my previous posts in SOVA and couldn’t help feeling that I have slipped up or gone backward or that my mental health has just tanked. But I will take the time to help myself get through this. I will be more gentle with myself going forward.
I wrote this post when I was struggling with my mental health. It was really difficult to get through each day, and I typed this up to document how I was feeling in the moment after a cry. I was going to write another post but I feel like putting this up is one way to be honest with myself in representing the ups and downs of my mental state. I talked to my therapist and I set up an appointment with a psychiatrist to talk about medications. I’ve generally been feeling more anxious and depressed as time goes on, and it has been interfering with how I experience my day to day life. Today I’m feeling a lot more at peace. I can go about my day a little easier without the dark clouds around me. I appreciate these states a lot more now, and I hope to eventually make this my baseline again.
What characterizes your ups and downs? How can you better appreciate and manage the flow of your emotions?