2014 is over. Thank fuck for that. This year has been the worst year of my life. My annus horribilis. Absolute. Shit. Nothing can ever compare to the year that yanked the rug out from under me and left me shattered. I lost my mother. My best friend. My other half. And I also lost my mind.

Most of my friends know this already but, I have been suffering from depression and anxiety since mom died. I know what you’re going to say, that’s normal, I have every reason to be depressed, etc. You’re right, and all that jazz. But that’s not just it. I’ve always had a bit of an imbalance, was prone to negativity, mood swings during girly time, days when I didn’t want to get out of bed. I thought I was managing it pretty well, and then when the blow came in April, I was knocked off my feet. Things I was managing before were now unmanageable. Just going out into public became a panic attack, hell I pulled over once while driving and screamed my brains out for 10 straight minutes because I was lost. Turns out I was less than 100 feet from my destination. Okay… beginning to interfere with my life here, and that is NOT okay with me.

I have been hiding, and I know that is taking a toll on my friendships. I am fighting a battle within myself, arguing with myself and trying to push myself to do something as simple as “go outside”. I have this anxious feeling that something will set me off and make me cry or panic, and the thought of people seeing me panic makes me panic. I can’t tell you what a giant fucking pain in the ass that is. Fuck, it’s making me cry as I write this, just because I’m fucking frustrated. My friends want to see me, and I keep shrinking away. When did I get so afraid of people? When did I become so goddamned ashamed?

I need to unscramble my brain and my life. Imagine every electronics cord you’ve ever owned or will own, hopelessly knotted up together, looking like there’s no hope of ever getting them all separated… that’s what my mind feels like. My chest feels like it’s about to explode all the time because I’m so nervous my heart is pounding uncontrollably. I am torn by every thought I have. Scared by reactions to situations that should be no big deal. I’m scared of going outside for fuck sake. That’s not me. I love outside! Well, maybe not when it’s -15 Celsius out, but normally I love outside.

I am on the road to recovery, I hope. I am going into this with an open mind and an open heart, because I don’t want to be this way anymore. I don’t want to be afraid. I don’t want to feel unfulfilled. I want my life to have more substance than just my anxiety and depression.

I have been started on an antidepressant medication called Citalopram. I have also been prescribed Lorezpam to help me sleep. Why am I telling you this? Well, mostly because I am realizing, slowly, that I have no reason to hide, nor do I have to be ashamed. I, along with millions of other Canadians, suffer from anxiety and depression. We just have to find what works for us to help get us back to normal and stay there. I would give anything to feel normal.

I was able to land an appointment with a grief counselor on Monday. I wasn’t really given any direction after my mother died, so I was never made aware that they actually existed. I probably knew they existed, but since I’d never needed one before, I didn’t know I needed one… but I think I might need one. I probably needed one 8 months ago.

I still have my appointment in February, and I intend to go, but there are also a lot of other changes I am making in my life. I am adopting a complete honesty rule, no more hiding, no more sugar-coating. I will say what I mean, say no when I mean no, yes when I mean yes, and no secrets. My friends have said to me “I feel like you don’t talk to me… you can talk to me, you know” and I’m going to take you up on that. But be prepared that there is no holding back. These feelings need to get out of me, so they can die and never bother me again… there’s a lot of it built up, so it will take a while, but it has to happen.

My list of resolutions this year is a long one, but each of the points is attainable, and should help to give my life balance, normalcy, and let me take the time to smell the roses, and enjoy the things I enjoy. This year is about me, and journey from crazy to again being queen. I used to rule my life, and I haven’t been doing that lately. It’s time to step up and reign.

My New Years Resolutions

(In no particular order)

1. Be naked more. Chad introduced me to hanging out naked at home, and I must say, it’s pretty fucking awesome.  Don’t worry, I’m not going to be a nudist. My clothes are way too awesome. But hell, when I’m relaxing, I’m going to be nude! That means that you’re definitely going to have to call over before you come visit.

2. Listen to more classical music. I’ve subscribed to Rdio (thanks Walter!) and can listen to a constant stream of music. I intend to get my money’s worth. Be prepared for it to sound like Downton Abbey around here.

3. Breakfast. I need to start eating 3 decent meals a day, not grazing like some kind of barnyard animal. Smoothies are a good way yo get when I need to kick-start my brain for the day, so I’m going to make some motherfucking smoothies. I need to give my body and my brain the best chance to get healthy and straighten shit out.

4. Lunch. I’m going to eat that too. And I’m going to cook at home more, instead of buying stupid and gross convenience foods simply because I’ve gotten too lazy at home to give a shit about the things I put in my body. No more Kraft Dinner (Sorry Chad). Home made macaroni and cheese. You’ll thank me for it. I’ll thank me for it.

5. Cut waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay back on junk food, soda, take out, fast food etc. This stuff is seriously shit. I’ve gotten addicted to junk food and not cooking dinner and that’s made me fat, out of shape, and unhealthy. Goddammit. I haven’t had soda in 2 weeks. I feel quite proud of that since I was drinking at least a can of Dr. Pepper a day. I’m going to fall off the wagon on this, I’m weak and I’ll fall off the fat girl bandwagon. I will buy Lays potato chips. I will buy cookies. And I will enjoy the shit out of them… but I’ll dust the crumbs off and climb back onto the bandwagon and hope next time I can resist the temptation. I’m human, I’m fat and I like cake. This isn’t going to be easy, but I’ll thank myself later.

6. Exercise. The doctors have told me that exercise is like medicine for those who are depressed and anxious. One doctor has recommended that I take a walk every day, for 10 minutes. Then when that’s easy, make it 20. I will work out this year, but I won’t beat myself up if I don’t do anything but take walks for a week. I want to get back into my fat girl yoga. It helped me. I felt better, I felt calmer. I felt stronger. I want to try to get that feeling back.

7. Drink tea. I love tea. I always have. I don’t know why the fuck I don’t drink more of it! Chad got me the cutest tea-cup and saucer set, as well as a tea for one set that looks like a double-decker bus. SQUEE! I’m drinking tea this year. Who wants to have funny snooty tea parties with me? Where we wear hats and pearl necklaces. 🙂

8. Craft Room! I started making flower crowns last year, and I love it! I have been bitten by the crafting bug. I love being creative and working with my hands. This year, Chad and I are cleaning up the second bedroom (which has become less of a storage room, and more like a black hole where things get sucked in, never to be seen again. Fuck, there’s stuff in there that I’m pretty sure we haven’t seen since Chad moved in! That shit’s gotta gooooooo. So we’re decluttering out life and our apartment, and we’re setting up a craft/work room in the spare room, where I can learn to sew, and continue making my crowns, hairpieces, and whatever else my little heart desires, and Chad can get back into programming, since that’s what he’s meant to do. He’s so good at it. And it’s all natural talent. So, we’re both going to be more creative this year and see if we can make some extra money doing something we love.

9. Do coffee with friends. Being so anxious lately has caused me to desperately want to become a shut in. It will take me some time, I’m working on it. Be patient. And if you’re wanting to be on my list of coffee dates, drop me a line, and we’ll make it happen. Just be warned, I might cry. I cry a lot. Just be ready to pretend it’s not happening, okay? I’ll snap out of it fairly quickly, usually. It’s something as simple as seeing something that reminds me of mom, and I cry. Just ignore it. Unless I ask you for a hug. Then hug me.

10. Keep on top of the things that should be second nature to me. Depression turns people into slobs. I combed my hair for the first time in 2 months yesterday. What the fuck? I just threw it up into a pony or a bun and left it at that. I sometimes skip brushing before bed because if I do, my teeth will be clean and that means I can’t raid the fridge without ruining that, sometimes I’m just not ready to commit to a snack free night. How fucking sad is that? That’s gross, and fuck that. It’ll force me to stop overeating at night because I’m sad.

11. Stop binge eating. I come home after not eating all day, and I gorge myself on whatever is around. I have anxiety around other people seeing me eat, so I don’t eat much at restaurants, at work, or out and about. I’ve had people look at my plate and then at me in disgust, and somehow that rattles me. But I’m working on not letting it rattle me. I’m working on looking those judgmental people straight in the eye, and very prominently giving them the finger. Eating three meals a day will help stop me from feeling ravenous at the end of the day, so I’m less like to binge on junk food anyway.

12. Go to the library. Halifax just opened an amazing building in downtown Halifax, and I intend to take full advantage of all its amenities! Plus, I like to read. I want to do more of it this year. And not just cookbooks and recipes either. I need to learn things. New things. Things I like, I want to know all about them… who wants to be my library buddy?

13. Use my phone less. Chad pointed out that I’ve become one of those people who’s constantly glued to their phone, Facebooking and Twittering and all that bullshit. I love Chad more than anything in this whole wide world, and for him, I am going to put the phone down, and be with him, instead of being on social media. I challenge my friends to do the same this year. Life was simpler and better when we spent time with each other instead our phones.

I feel a baker’s dozen is a good place to end my list for now. These are all easily attainable goals, and adding these things to my daily, weekly, monthly life will hopefully give me a sense of normalcy, so I can calm the fuck down.

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