Diagnoses and Deep Thoughts

Let’s start this off with a bit of backstory, shall we?

When I was in junior high, I was very depressed. Eighth grade was the darkest period of my entire life (until now). I was bullied, picked on, and tormented for most of sixth, seventh, and the beginning of eighth grade, and I think those cruel words and actions pretty much defined my life for the following years. I was one of the “nerds” before being a nerd was cool like it is now. I wore big glasses and used to get in trouble for reading too much, which was pretty much social suicide back then. But seventh grade was when it really started to get bad.

I started seventh grade at Hutchison Junior High with the majority of my elementary classmates. (Including my now-husband, who was tormented even more than I was.) Frankly, it was the seventh circle of hell. I remember being bullied so much on the school bus that my mom eventually started driving me back and forth to school, to spare me from it. I got shoved into lockers, tripped in the cafeteria while carrying my food, teased in class, and had an endless cycle of less-than-flattering rumors constantly circulating about me (including one that said I wasn’t potty-trained and had to wear adult diapers underneath my jeans. I can’t make this shit up). One girl in particular threatened to kick my ass on a daily basis. Her name was Daisy and she had been held back two years in a row. She was like, fifteen and still in seventh grade. She would walk by my desk in the class we shared and hiss threats at me, or slam notes on my desk that were full of explicit details of my impending demise.

Eventually, it got so bad at Hutch that my mom transferred me to Ousley Junior High, where a handful of my more privileged ex-classmates attended. My poor husband, however, was stuck at Hutch, where he lived in misery until high school started. Life at Ousley, was better, but not by much. I was still bullied. I remember the first time I got my period, I was so terrified to go to school that I was sick to my stomach. And sure enough, one of my classmates in my math class got ahold of my little bag of “girly items” and started throwing them back and forth with his boorish buddies and laughing. The following night, after my parents went to bed, I swallowed half a bottle of Tylenol.

I survived, obviously.I was the sickest I’ve ever been in my life, but I survived. My parents didn’t even know what I had done. But that wasn’t my first attempt to take my own life. About a year later, when I was deep in the trenches of my goth phase, I used an X-acto knife to cut my wrist. Thank goodness I had no idea what I was doing, because while it was definitely a fairly deep wound, I missed all major veins. That scar is actually covered up now, by my first tattoo.

To make a long story short, I’ve been dealing with this crap for years and years now. It hasn’t really been too bad for the most part, but recently it’s reared it’s ugly head with a vengeance. I had a bad episode back in December that landed me in the hospital, and again last week. This most recent incident started off with me being handcuffed and tossed into the back of a police car and ended with me spending 30 hours in a psych unit (which was a level of depravity that I’ve never seen before). I was officially diagnosed with chronic depression and episodic mood disorder, and given an anti-depression/anti-anxiety prescription.

It’s a little hard to talk so candidly about my demons. I’m not one to go blabbing about “poor me, poor me” and hoping that I get sympathy, but my doc told me that it’s actually helpful to talk about it. I’ve been keeping all this nonsense inside for over ten years, and that’s not healthy. I want other people who may be suffering to know that it DOES get better, and the pain will subside. It’ll never go away completely, but it will take a backburner if you take the necessary steps to keep yourself well. At this point, I’m taking it one day at a time and learning to not hate myself; which is hard every day, but getting easier.

Til next time.

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