I left you all at a strange place almost a year ago. Saying I was headed off to Cleveland and leaving everything on the line. And I did.
There were so many things I wanted to write about. The experience that I was left with was incredible and disheartening at the same time. And so I held off. Because most times that I wanted to write were fueled by depression. Severe depression.
I ignored it for a long, long time, thinking it was just a change in the weather or a bad day. But deep down I knew it wasn't. It was me. It was everything that has happened in these last 4 years finally catching up to me and my psyche just couldn't hold up anymore. So it broke down at a change in the breeze or a drop in hormones.
I should've known that when I felt so anxious about my problems that I couldn't even acknowledge that they existed that things were bad. But I just kept plunging into new things and occupying myself until a time came where I was just sitting at home a lot because work didn't need me that week and I had quit volunteering because of work.
So as I sat at home and a chill hit me and I burst into sobs for seemingly no reason, I knew something really was wrong and that I had to start seeing a psychologist again and do something about my antidepressant. Because at the moment there seemed to be no "anti" qualities about it.
So I started seeing the same psychologist my brother sees and as I told her everything that was going on, I found myself doing the same thing I always do: making my problems seem small and non problematic. I only cried once. But seeing her concern by the end at how my highs were lowering and my lows were getting lower, she told me to consult my neurologist about a change in dosage.
Nothing has kicked in yet, but I am having a moment of clarity.
Going to Cleveland, despite what everyone says, was a success in my eyes. Hell, even despite what I say sometimes. And it was a success not because I left cured, but because I didn't quit. It was an intensive 3 week program that I had to drop my entire life in Pennsylvania to do. And it was hard. Really hard. And there were times when I questioned why I had even thought it was a good idea.
And then I would see the others in that next moment. The others who were just like me. Just trying to make it through their 3 weeks of Hell too. And we found consolation in each other, not the doctors. We carried each other through rough weeks and celebrated good ones. We waved happy and hopeful goodbyes to the graduates of each week that passed. We gave grave consolation to those just starting and told them how they really needed to just make it through Week 1.
It is a time in my life I will never forget. Those are people I will always remember. Their smiles and their tears. Their warm embraces and laughter we all shared. The knowledge I will pass on forever and hold in my heart.
Cleveland was an experience that I would never do again. But presented with the option in another life? It is most certainly an opportunity that I would embrace with the same vigor that I did in this one. Hope given is a rare thing. I strive to impart it on others throughout my journey as I did in Ohio.