Friday, April 30, 2010


It can come at anytime. It could be a warm sunny day. I could be having coffee with my mother or laughing my head off with my friends. I could be happy and content and suddenly The Feeling strikes and bruises my heart: The most overwhelming sense of sadness and loneliness will literally consume me. It will tear the smile of my face and drown me in tears.

I know I am not alone in feeling this way, even though when it happens I do feel very, very alone. For me there are triggers that start the spiral downward. I’m still trying to figure out what these triggers are, I know one of them is seeing a person or animal that I feel sorry for but they can be anything really. Sometimes it would be the oddest things. Today I saw beautiful girl in the grocery store, she was doing promotions….for sanitary pads. Yes most of you will find this funny, she was standing there with a pad stuck to cardboard underwear. She had a huge smile on her face trying to get people’s attention, but everyone was ignoring her. It wasn’t an easy product to promote and she was trying her best. I felt so sorry for her.

Sometimes it can be something that is worth all the tears a person can give. There was a massive photograph on the front page of the newspaper yesterday. The photographer had taken a picture of a little boy- just minutes after he had learned his mother had been murdered.

This will start a process – sadness, thinking about everything that’s wrong with my life and with the world and eventually the loneliness with set in the leaving me in a dark hole. The hurt is so great I almost can’t stand it. I wish they had a pill for sadness….

I feel like the only thing that can help ease the hurt it is a long bear- hug. The worse thing about when I lived overseas is I would go for weeks without anyone touching me, never mind hugging. Comfort eating was a huge part of trying to numb the pain, I used to do the most ridiculous things to try and replace a hug: rolling my body up in my winter duvet, like a huge sausage roll. Sometimes when I was in public I would find a loved- up couple or a mommy or daddy with their kiddies and follow them, just to see them love each other. It was a reminder that there were still pockets of sunshine in a very harsh world.

Positive thinking: tomorrow the sun will rise again, that girl will make a fortune in commissions because of her smile and….THIS TO SHALL PASS…

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Warrior Susan and her sidekick, Holly The Cat

Since I started this blog I have been reading blogs of those in a similar situation. I have been knocked sideways by the courage and heartbreak that I have found. Reading these stories has fulled me with both sadness and hope.

There is one blog in particular that has me hooked. The author, a beautiful woman named Susan is one of the most heroic fighters I have met. She faces every challenge that comes her way with courage that is so rare and she is still able to keep her humor and have a laugh. Her writing is honest and comes straight from the heart. So much of it has resonated with me.

I thought it deserved a mention:)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Shopping, sunshine and pizza...

I have just returned home from going out to dinner- it has been the most beautiful day here- one of those golden, crisp days, coupled with a tiny bit of shopping (broke students don't get to splurge!) and going to have pizza in the country has put me in a very serene and content mood.

But my it has left me so sleepy that twice, while editing all my looong posts, I found my head bobbing towards my laptop *yawn*.

Anyway I have broken it up into more managable peices- still long but at least you won't need glasses by the time you are finished.

I have also been wondering if maybe posting all this stuff first (girl gets nervous, girl goes crazy, girl is on antidepressants) hasn't made the blog look more well, depressingand, er, dark. I was so apprehensive about writing this (and still am) so I started in the best place I knew- the begining. Besides, depression, anxiety, breakdowns- for the most part ain't pretty. I won't sugar- coat anything on here and I've spent to long hiding it to only be honest while writing. Like I said in the begining, if I could just make one person feel like they are not all alone then I will be happy. I know what it is like to be alone in this and it truely is the most soul- destroying feeling.

Anyway happy weekend folks- I'm gonna let this sit for a while, I have no idea how to promote this blog- at least without feeling like a showoff!!


Hope for the flowers part 4.....

When I got to the doctor the nurse took my temperature, blood, pressure and pulse. My blood pressure was sky- high and when checking my pulse she said, " It's amazing, you look so calm but your pulse is racing".I remember she was looking at me like a crazy person. Even though there was a patient before me, she called the doctor to come and see me first. I was actually embarrassed about seeing the doctor, because, where I came from you don't see the doctor just because you were nervous. But she told me it sounded as though I was suffering from Generalized anxiety disorder and most likely depression and she said that it was actually quite common.

She gave me prescription for 10mg Lexapro (antidepressants) and then a small prescription for Xanax (sedatives) - to help until the antidepressants worked their way into my system (about six weeks). I took both pills as soon as I got home. I had never taken a sedative before and boy, it didn't waste any time working on me. Within 15 minutes I could feel all the horrible tension start to leave my body and it had some consequences. I had been so hyped up that I didn't feel the aches and pains from completely overdoing it at the gym the day before and it was only then that I realised how badly I hurt my arm- I had stretched the muscle so badly that I could hardly move it. I fell into drug- fuelled sleep. The next few day were spent in a sedated haze that I can barely remember now.

A few things before I go. Generalized Anxiety disorder and depression are two disorders not to be messed around with. In reality I believe, firstly, that if I had gotten help sooner, even from the people around me it would never have gotten that bad. My stubbornness got me so sick that it nearly killed me. I believe that I should have been hospitalized (and at one point the doctor did suggest it) but I wasn't fortunate enough to have health insurance. Secondly, even though I am still on antidepressants now, I think this should be used at a last resort- you can't rely on drugs to keep you calm and happy for the rest of your life, you need to get to the source of the problem and develop some coping skills. Antidepressants treat the symptoms and not the cure. That being said there are times when they are necessary and the refusal to take them can be detrimental, my problems started because of a of two reasons- past events that had never been resolved were starting to take it's toll but a big part of what happened in America was a chemical imbalance- I needed medication at the time to correct it. What happened was no ones fault- with me being so secretive about it the people around me acted in the best way the knew how.

Thank- you for enduring such a long post, that's the majority of the dark stuff told. I am determined to make this blog more uplifting, but need to get some stuff out of the way first.

My hope for the flowers Part 3.....

There is always a point when everything hits the fan, when the volcano finally explodes. That day came on 13Th March 2007. By now I had suicidal thoughts, I felt as though my mind wasn't my own anymore and I might do something rash. The anxiety was always with me and had became so bad it was actually physically painful- really PAINFUL. I wasn't sleeping at all and I couldn't eat, I began losing weight rapidly (this NEVER happens, I can eat my way through stomach flu). I was exhausted and my body was breaking down. I got home from work on the 13Th, it was raining. I had been convinced that I would have a car accident on the way home but was resolved that I was given one more day. I went on the Internet and read a creepy story about girl who had said to her husband one night "I'm so tired, maybe I'll be leaving this world", the next night she was killed in a car accident. I googled "premonition of death". After I read enough I went back to my room. I was looking out the window when I was overcome by intense pain, I couldn't breathe, heart was pounding, I was shaking so badly I collapsed to the floor- on the way my nails scraped the paint off walls and started bleeding. I don't remember much or how long I lay there, but I remember I was terrified and started praying.

I tearfully phoned my parents that night- I didn't tell them exactly what happened all I said is that everyone around me was dying and I felt that I was next. Both my Mom and Dad came onto phone at the same time and were praying with me. They couldn't understand what was going on. I tried to eat but couldn't. After the panic went away, the anxiety was still there but I felt disconnected from everything- like I wasn't really there but outside my body watching what was happening to me. I didn't feel pain anymore but I couldn't feel any else- I started beating my arms down on the kitchen counter just to try and feel something. By now I think the people in the house must have been scared of me and just wanted to avoid me- I don't blame them. I went and lay down on the bathroom floor for an hour just staring at the ceiling. I was hoping that my parents prays over me would save me and protect me but I knew with all certainty that it wasn't over.

I went to bed taking deep breathes to try and calm myself down. I finally managed to fall into a light dose. At 3:10am - I can remember the exact time to this day- I woke up with a painfull jolt and with one powerful, overwhelming thought in my mind- it was as though I had been thinking about it while I was asleep: God didn't exist, he had never existed, everything had been a lie, the bible was just weirdly written fairy tale and I was part of an evolutionary process that all began with a big bang. And when I died- which I felt was going to happen very soon I was going nowhere- I would just cease to exist.

For those of you that Christians or even religious or spiritual- people who have based their life on their beliefs, everything they are as a person is because of what they believe and God is their greatest source of love. Try and imagine just for one minute ( and I know it may be impossible for some of you) what it would feel like if that was taken away from you what if you found out everything you believed was a lie? Can you imagine the absolute horrendous devastation?. I was a lukewarm christian with questions but I felt as though part of me died that night and even after all these years I still don't think I will ever be the same. I was praying , pleading with the holy spirit to rescue me but there was nothing. In hindsight though, if God and his angels had suddenly opened the heavens with trumpets and harps and started speaking to me, judging by the condition I was already in, that probably would have rendered me permanently insane. I'm trying to understand I really am, but a part of me is saying, "You could have done something!".

I went to work the next morning and the minute my co- worker ( who is now one of my best friends) saw me the look on her face told me everything: the time for hiding was over. I sat at my desk the whole day, in a panic-stricken state, sweating, not being able to keep anything in my stomach, shaking, always thirsty and constantly going to the toilet (that had to be one of the most annoying symptoms). I was always very chatty and bubbly in the office, but that day I was dead quiet. All the while my co- worker calmly corrected all the BAD mistakes I was making, covered for me and generally kept people from bothering me. At some point during the day she said to me, " I know it's your anxiety, it's bad, you need to go to the doctor". I was being stubborn but she kept on insisting. Finally I called and made an appointment the next morning.

My co- worker and I went to gym after to work, I thought that would be a great outlet for my stress so really worked out hard. But it didn't do much good. I was so desensitized that when I accidentally yanked my arm the wrong way it didn't even hurt. When I went to bed, I didn't sleep as usual. My anxiety was always worse at night so I sat in bed rocking back and forth watching a Hillsong T.V episode that I had taped over and over. I even went for a walk down the street. I decided the next morning that I could not face another day like that at work.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

My hope for the flowers Part 2....

What was happening to my body was bad enough, but what was even worse was what was happening to my mind. My brain was racing all the time, I couldn't think straight, my memory was shot and I became obsessive. Two subjects I became obsessed with: death and God's existence. The first obsession, death I think happened because I was working for a large company in a small town. In the space of a couple of months there had been several deaths- a lot of them from freak accidents- of either the employees or their family members. Nevertheless I became obsessed with death, my mind was weak and unhealthy and with strange illness that was happening, I somehow managed to convince myself that I was next. Yes, I believed that I was foreseeing my own death. I was so convinced of this that I would tell myself, "Wednesday, it's going to happen on Wednesday, by this time next week I won't be alive". I stayed up all night, trying to list every achievement, every good memory telling myself I had had a good life. I called my mother more often just hear her voice, in case I never heard it again.

The second obsession- the question of whether or not God exists was the worst out of everything I was going through. I had become a born- again Christan when I was 12, I had witnessed things which were no doubt miracles, seen people being completely transformed by Jesus, yet I had never really built a relationship of my own with him. This was because of several issues that I won't go into right now. While I was overseas I did began to question certain things about the bible, the rules etc.It
was something that was always in the back of mind. Of course being convinced that I was going to die the question of where I was going afterwards came hand in hand- and I wasn't sure. It seems as though all the scientific evidence supporting God not existing made sense. I fought against it, that fact that after a person dies they just cease to exist was not something that I wanted to believe in and thought of it was frightening.

The greatest stress was that I went to great lengths to hide what was going on with me. I had only arrived in America a few months before and was still getting to know family and new friends I had, still trying to make a good impression. I was so embarrassed about what I was going through- how do you tell someone you are just getting to know that you think you're about to die for no apparent reason. I never realised until much later how good some of the people were around me and that I really had nothing to worry about, some of them were hurt that I hadn't turned to them. All the hiding may have worked at first, but the sicker I got the more the cracks began to show- everyone knew something was wrong but I wasn't telling.

It has taken me nearly all day to write this- well in between fixing my laptop and trying to force myself to study (which is not working). I've just previewed this post and am overwhelmed by how loooong it is. So I have decided to break it up into two parts. I have already started writing the second part and will probably post tonight. This is not easy to write and I need a break!

Cheers until then...

My hope for the flowers....Part 1

On the 2ND January 2007, I woke up suddenly at 2am to a very eerie bedroom and the strangest feeling. Everything was dark and dead quite- I was lying on my stomach peering out the window- all seemed normal but I felt like something was terribly wrong. Then the weirdest feeling- how I can best describe it, it was as though an ice- cold claw slowly curled round my heart and held it in a vice -grip. A feeling of horrible fear and dread filled me- so much so that I actually stopped breathing and was paralysed. I told myself that if I could just move and get some noise and light into the room then it would just go away. I forced myself to get up, switch the light on and turn on the T.V. I walked around the house to get a grip. Everything seemed normal but it wasn't- that episode had freaked me out so much that I slept for the rest of the night with the T.V and light on. I was afraid to go to bed after that and if I did attempt to I always slept with the light on.

At the time I was living in America, I had left home nearly three years before, spent two years living in London, UK before moving to California. I was on a great adventure but I had been away from home for a long time.

After that night in my room something had changed, it was small at first but day after day it began to take over my life. I was nervous, terrified all the time for no apparent reason. I began to get sick- my asthma flared up for the first since I was a child, I suffered nausea, headaches, my hair started falling out. I had heart palpitations which shocked me- didn't that only happen to older people? How was it possible that I could have heart attack at 23!?.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Hope for the flowers..

*A tale- partly about life partly about revolution and lots about hope for adults and others (including caterpillars who can read)*

My Dad bought this book for my Mom before they got married in 1981. I find this rather surprising as my Dad is not a sentimental fellow and he generally avoids the mushy stuff like the plague. I wonder now if there was some law of attraction involved as this book- in a more serious light and without the cute drawings- would be a mirror for their marriage and the metamorphosis that would happen to my Mom. Their life together would not be easy.

The message that this book gives is what I hope will be the outcome for me with my
journey and it's the message that I want give on this blog: The road less travelled can be unsteady and frightening but can lead to some of the greatest adventures and discoveries, especially about yourself. And sometimes it takes a battle or a painfull metamorphosis to become the person you are meant to be. For many of us it takes being refined in a fire to discover that we are capable of things that we never thought possible

I was about nine when my mom first read this book to my sister and I. I think of the story as an unusual family heirloom. It's always been a huge comfort and inspiration to me. We lost the original book about ten years ago but ironically enough I found another copy again- during one of the most difficult times of my life- in a doctor's waiting room.

Anyway that's enough about the book. Please know that it is very difficult for me to write about my experience as the hurt is still very fresh. My story won't be very sensational ( at least I don't think) but that doesn't mean there isn't a lot of pain involved for me. And also apprehension- only my immediate family and two very close friends really know what is going on with me. It may not seem to be very advisable then, to air the whole blasted thing on cyberspace where all sorts of weird and wonderful people can read it.

I'm sensitive about it because there is a lot prejudice and a huge stigma involved in this subject. I may be afraid of the criticism right now, but I would like nothing more to blow the lid off of stereotypes there is and raise awareness about what is a very serious issue.

Since I've got most of the intros and pussy-footing over and done with, I think I have finally got up enough courage to share my story with whoever is willing to listen or read. Tomorrow is another day....

Meet Stripe and Yellow...

Some of you may know them some of you may not. For those of you that do know them you'll know they were two of the bravest caterpillars ever to crawl on earth.

This blog will not be about the great Stripe and Yellow, but I thought they would be great introduction. Why? because not matter how small and insignificant a person is, they have a story to tell and some stories are REALLY worth telling.

My story is rather unusual and rather heartbreaking, but also funny and at times uplifting. I'm writing for many reasons: My family, to find someone in the same boat and I really do hope that some of the things I have to say will help and least one person. But, (and I really hope I don't sound self- absorbed- that is NOT my intention)I am mostly writing for myself. I want something tangible that I can hold onto to remind that I am on a journey, that I am taking baby steps and that I am one step ahead then I was yesterday- there is tomorrow. On that glorious day when I reach the top of this mountain I can look back down into the valley- read everything I wrote and say " Wow! what a ride".

A few warnings first: I used to be good at writing but long years of neglect have put me severely out of practice. Also trying to express myself will be difficult at first. Please be patient with me!
Secondly, I have inherited my dad's stubborn mind and have STRONG opinions about certain things. I am hoping my sweet mothers influence on me will have given me some tact. But in the end they are just opinions agreeing and disagreeing with them is your right.

Until next time.....