“I Don’t Know How You Do It”…….”Yeah, Neither Do I”

God has been blessing me over the last week. Or maybe I should say it this way, I have been seeing God’s blessings to me this past week. I am still struggling, hard, with the depression, but there have just been some times in the last week where I can truly say “God did that”. There’s a co-worker of mine— Rachel— Who has also been struggling lately and she saw a facebook post I had put up and she texted me to let me know that I wasn’t the only one feeling as if there was no positive feedback within our office. She let me know that I am doing a good job, and that she can see it bothers me that I try so hard and then get no feedback other than things like “well you could have ……” or “why didn’t you …….” it’s frustrating and it wares on a persons self-esteem fast. It’s just been good to know Rachel sees it too, that I’m not alone in this as a staff member at our office.

Another viewing of God is my friend Johanna. She just seems to be there to give a hug at all the right times. She comes into the office for her meetings and they all just seem to be at the right moment. She makes me laugh, and we are even going to go to lunch today and just hang out. I’m really looking forward to that. I am anxious about it too….and I know she’s reading this blog, and I just want to say, I’m only anxious because I am not used to having friends who are truly interested in me or interested in getting to know me as a person, not just a coworker or whatever. I’m not used to having friends ….. only acquaintances. Johanna is an amazing friend though, always knows just when to text a “hello” or “good morning” and just seems to “get me” she understands where I’m coming from and it doesn’t scare her away.

After lunch with Johanna today I’m going to grandmas house with a bunch of my family to make potato pancakes. It should be interesting. I say that because, well, I don’t know why. I am anxious about this too, and I’m not really sure why I am anxious about it. It’s just going to be a few cousins, my mom, aunt and uncle, my grandma and possibly my sister and a friend at some point. I guess I’m anxious because my depression has been overwhelming, and it’s going to be hard to stay focused, in the moment, present with my family, and not “zone out” or isolate within the group of people. I suppose this is also known as dissociation. It hasn’t happened in a long time for me, but I just have been feeling lately like it’s been harder and harder to stay in the moment and while I have been able to up to now, I don’t know I will be able to later today. I don’t know for sure, so we shall see.

I don’t know how many people actually read this blog, and I’ve said that before, but I just want to let you all know, I write exactly what’s on my mind and I do this as a way to let it all out. I have found that writing in a journal doesn’t work, because I feel like I’m not truly “getting it out” because no one is seeing it. With this blog though, even though you all are strangers, I feel like I’m being heard, that my deepest thoughts and aches and questions of life are being heard and acknowledged, that I am not just writing, but I am writing and people are “hearing me” it does a lot for me to know I’m being heard. So thank you to every single one of you who have ever read my blog, liked it or commented on it. I really appreciate you all.



“I don’t know”……Can’t That Be An Acceptable Answer?

My last post I told you all everything that had happened in the span of a week. Well….things haven’t gotten much better. My friend, the teenager who was pregnant, well, she lost the baby. I think it may be a blessing in disguise in many ways, but it’s still a baby and a life lost and that sucks. I feel bad for her in many ways.

My grandpa is still in the hospital, though he was transferred to a rehab facility to hopefully get him stronger so he could go home…..but it isn’t very hopeful he will ever go home. He just isn’t strong enough and grandma can’t take care of him and his mind just isn’t there. He rarely can even remember our names and he gets so agitated so easily. He’s a handful in the nicest of ways to put it. I miss my grandpa. The joker, the one who would laugh with us and make snide comments. I miss the guy who would tell us stories about his life growing up, and I miss being a kid that would get so excited to get a shiny penny from pa each time we’d go over to his house. I miss knowing he understands just how much I love him, and I miss knowing he believes it. I just miss the way it used to be.

My dad keeps asking me, “what’s wrong?” or “how you doing?” and all I can come up with to say is “I don’t know.” and it’s not a lie. I truly don’t know all the time what is wrong or why I feel the way I do…..or even what I’m feeling at all. It’s hard to describe, it’s hard to tell someone that on the inside you are just falling apart but you know you have to be strong on the outside for everyone else or else you’d for sure screw everything up. What I mean by that is if I were to let down my guard, I’d be crying all the time. I wouldn’t be able to focus, and I wouldn’t be able to work. I sometimes find myself driving and then I arrive at my destination and I have no clue how I got there because I was so much in my head instead of paying attention and being mindful of the car ride. I’m lucky I know, that I haven’t been in an accident. I sometimes find myself sitting at work not sure how I’m doing what I need to be doing or getting things done because my mind is not there. But I’m somehow holding it together because I don’t want this depression to win.

I had tried doing ECT treatments every 3 weeks for a couple of times, but just last week my psychiatrist and I decided now is not the time to be spreading them out and trying that. We had to go back to every 2 weeks again. I feel like a failure. I feel like I will never get to where I want to be, do the things I want to do……which honestly I’m not even sure what those things are, and I’m scared of my mind taking over my life. I feel as if I will never get any further than where I am now and I wonder if it’s even worth the effort of trying if failure is what will happen in the end. I just want to be normal, to not have these thoughts, feelings, and depression all the time. I just want to say I want to be alive and mean it. I want to be proud of me not just others be proud of me.

It’s a new year, and I just want it to be better than the past. I just want to say I matter, and believe it. I just don’t know when I’ll ever get to that point.


“If there ever comes a day when we can’t be together, keep me in your heart, I’ll stay there forever.” – Winnie the Pooh

I use this blog as a place to come to write out everything that’s going on in my life/mind at the moment. I don’t write every day, or even every week. I tend to only write when there’s something, or a few things that have been going on in my life that I need to just let out. I don’t expect responses from people, I don’t even know how many people actually read this blog. I’ve said this before. I use this blog more as a journal that I know at least a few people read some times and because of this I feel heard. I never was able to just have a journal that I would write in and no one read it. I never really saw the point. I didn’t ever feel as if that helped me because I would be getting the words out but no one would know how I was feeling. With this blog, even though I don’t know the people who read it, I can say I feel heard. It’s a form of validation.

Anyways……. I don’t really know why I decided to start this specific blog with that statement above. I just know that the last couple of weeks there have been some really stressful, bad, and some really good things that have happened. Over the last month or so changes have been made at my workplace. People have been laid off, and other people have had position changes. All because the organization wasn’t, in my eyes, being responsible with the money that was coming in, and was spending to quickly rather than taking a step back and looking at where we really could be spending and where we really needed to save. The executive director, I feel, is only letting the employees in on a small part of the reasoning behind all these big changes, and I just get this gut feeling there’s something more going on. I love the organization I work for. I love helping the people we help. And I can honestly say, this organization helped myself and my family through some of the darkest times of our lives due to my mental illness. I’ve been volunteering for this organization for over 5 years, and officially on staff since March of this year. I hate to say I am considering looking for a new job because of all that’s going on.

On top of all the stress at work, there is the stress at home. I don’t want to get into it much, but let’s just say my mom has some major depression issues she’s not working on and it’s pushing myself and my dad to the edge.

My grandpa. He was diagnosed with dementia over a year ago. Things have been getting worse and the fact that my grandma is the one taking care of him (with the exception of 6-8 hours a day they have a care taker come in to help 5 days a week), is draining her to her core. She is getting frustrated, angry, and she just can’t do it anymore. We are often going up there to help, my aunt and uncle are too, but it’s just not enough. I fear for my grandma. I fear this will put her over the edge and I honestly fear she will die before my grandpa. I have thought about quitting my job and telling her I will be up there full time from 8-8 every day to help her with him. I told my dad this and he said he won’t allow it. I just want so badly to help more than what we are now. I don’t know how to do that though. My family is really close. I talk to grandma at least every other day, and we are at their house multiple times a week. We all would drop everything if it meant it would help a member of our family, and we all know we have family support no matter what. This doesn’t just mean immediate family. I’m talking about my cousins, my aunt, and my uncle too. We’re all like a big puzzle and if there’s a piece missing we all work together to get that piece back and complete the picture.

I fear the day my grandpa dies. The picture will never be complete again. I don’t know what we’ll do. I don’t know what my dad will do…..he’s always been so close to pa. We all have. I can’t even think about what it will be like. Empty. That’s all I can think of to define what that moment in time will be.

I know I’ve been talking about some of the tough things that have been going on, but I wanted also to bring up some good too. I was finally able to get together with my good friend Johanna …….outside of work…..not just talking for a few minutes over a quick lunch in the office on a day we’re both there, or a quick phone call while one of us is driving. We managed to get together for lunch and while we talked mostly about work, we were able to laugh, bring up random things, and just have fun being together. This made my week……my month. Honestly, I can’t say how much I appreciate her friendship and just knowing she’s there and that she “gets me”. That is what friendship is about. I had a great time that day and I just cherish moments like that.

Another good thing…..just this past Saturday my parents and I went and spoke at my therapists class she teaches at a local university for the master’s of social work program. We shared our story of living with mental illness and how we all worked together and continue to work together to support one another and help each other through the good and the bad days. I was really proud of my parents.

Thank you to everyone who does read this blog, whether it’s 1, or 100 people. Thank you. I appreciate you taking the time to gain this glimpse into my life, my mind.


When You Wonder Where The End Of The Tunnel Is Exactly…….Isn’t There Supposed To be A Light?

This blog post is going to be a lot about tough things going on right now, if you aren’t up for that, then quit reading right now.

The last few weeks have not been ones where I can see that light at the end of the tunnel….in fact, they have been leading me to feel as if there is no end to this tunnel. Now, I know that’s obviously not true, but it’s how I feel and I’m putting it all out there right now.

I haven’t been doing the best…..in anything it seems. A couple weeks ago was my cousins wedding. We had to drive 4 hours just to get there. I have always had a great relationship with my cousins on my dads side. We grew up like siblings. I do have to admit though, I didn’t want to go to this wedding. Not at all. I’ll get right to the point as to why I didn’t want to go. I suppose I was in many ways jealous. There, I said it. All my cousins and my sister, they all have either a boyfriend, fiance, or now husband. They all have someone who loves them in a way I never have known, and have come to believe I never will know. I didn’t want to go to the wedding because I knew it would be just another time where that would be thrown in my face. Petty? Perhaps, but like I’ve said before, it’s how I feel and that’s what I write about on here, my feelings. I feel ugly, dirty, because of the abuse from my uncle. I feel as if I can never be loved by any man….that I am not worth it. I can’t even love myself most of the time, how could anyone else love me?

I went to the wedding. My cousin was beautiful. She deserves the best. I know that.

My depression and anxiety have not been the best. This ongoing med change has not been easy and it’s truly having an effect on my daily life. I have however, started a new medication that has honestly decreased my nightmares tremendously and that in itself is a miracle. They aren’t gone, but they have reduced so much.

Work has been hell lately. Things have been happening that shouldn’t be happening, and because of those things people are getting laid off, hours reduced, and job roles are changing. I work for a non-profit organization and lets just say they got too big too fast and didn’t have money to support the programming and keep everything going. That’s the jest of it…..I can’t really go into everything, but I am starting to look for a new job. I just don’t know where I will find a job that can be flexible with me to be able to have every other Friday off so I can have my ECT treatments. I’ve come so far with coming off of disability and gaining insurance through this job and now, now it seems to be falling apart and I feel as if I have no control over any of it. I’m scared, frustrated, anxious, depressed, and my emotions just feel like a tornado inside while I have to be a peaceful spring day on the outside.

The self injury thoughts and impulses have come back full strength over the past few weeks and I can’t really pinpoint why. My doctor knows about it, so does my therapist. However, I didn’t tell my parents until this past weekend and that proved to be a problem. See, I have this deal with my dad especially, that I would talk about what’s going on, and how I’m feeling. That there would be no secrets. Well, Saturday, dad tells me he and mom are going to go to Wisconsin for the weekend and I freaked out. I told him they couldn’t go, I got really angry, I yelled at them and I walked out telling them “if you had any idea what was going on you would know I couldn’t be alone for a whole weekend.” I walked out and didn’t tell them where I was going or anything. I’m sure it scared the shit out of them, and looking back it was really dumb of me. I just went and parked in a parking lot but I just couldn’t be home because of how angry I was. I had no right to be that angry. How would they know what’s going on if I don’t tell them? They couldn’t. Dad texted me they cancelled the trip and that I should come home and tell them what’s going on. I went home and told them all the feelings I have been having lately. How hard it was for me to go to the wedding, how it made me feel. I told them how everything going on at work was really setting off my anxiety and stress to the point I couldn’t handle it, and the self injury thoughts were getting to the point where I didn’t feel safe being by myself for 2 days in a row. I haven’t done anything to myself, I can honestly say that. I just have been having more and more thoughts and frustration and wanting to do it to just release, to relax, to quiet the thoughts and feelings even if it’s only for a few minutes. It’s hard to explain.

I don’t know what else to say really, all I know is I can’t be thankful enough for my parents, my boss Patty, and my friend Johanna, who have all just been there through it all.

“I’ve Stood On This Stage Night After Night, Reminding The Broken It’ll Be Alright. But Right Now, Oh Right Now I Just Can’t”- – MercyMe

We all live in a world where admitting you need help is seen as a weakness by many. I work in a profession where I am helping others daily. I at one point, was going out and speaking to people who were struggling. Sharing my story of recovery, hope, and letting them all know they don’t have to stay in the place they currently are. I would use my story to let them know recovery is possible. I would share the tough times, but I would bring hope by letting them all know where I have come, how far I have gotten, and that while it wasn’t easy, it was more than possible. Just like the title of this blog, I would let others know it was going to be alright, and I enjoyed and still enjoy doing that. I believe it will be alright many times. However, I get to a place sometimes in my own journey, where telling others it will get better feels like the biggest lie of my life. I feel like such a fake. I feel like the words “it’s going to get better” are the hardest words to say ever. Why? because even though I have come so far, I still have a road in front of me and that road is not perfect. I still have pot holes, I still have curves, and I still have hilly ups and downs. I know I brought this up somewhat in my last blog, but it has truly been on my mind ever since. I just feel like people hold me to this standard of “being better” and while I am better, I am not “cured”. The hurt, the struggle, the anxiety and everything else, it doesn’t go away. I cope with it differently, yes, but people don’t realize the amount work that goes into every day and getting through it. People don’t realize the smile on my face may not be the way I am feeling on the inside; and people really don’t realize that I can’t always keep that smile going because it’s just too exhausting.

My journey lately has not been the best. Meaning, it’s been harder lately than it was before. I’m in a place emotionally I don’t want to be. I’m going through a major medication change, and I just feel blah. Yes, I described it as blah. I feel alone. I feel lost, and I feel like no one truly understands. Even people who have a diagnosis. Not that my situation is any worse or whatever than theirs is. It’s just different. As is everyone’s. Each person has a unique journey, and I’m in a place right now where I can’t really describe what’s going on in my head. Therefore, how could anyone understand?

At work I am 100% over stressed. I am doing not only my job, but the work others should be doing. And now a fellow staff member is probably leaving and I will end up “helping” with the stuff she usually would be doing until they find someone else to fill the position. I’m getting pushed to the limit. I’ve brought it up to my supervisor, and she’s basically saying there’s nothing she can do as it is just going to have to be this way for awhile. She has no control over the changes being made. I’m really considering searching for another job. I would hate leaving where I am. I love the people, and I love the mission and purpose of the organization I am at now. I feel like if I were to leave, it would leave people pretty upset, as I have only been on staff for about 6 months. I wouldn’t want to leave them in a bad situation and I would feel like I couldn’t go back as a volunteer, which I would absolutely love to do. Anyway, I just feel like while it’s a supportive environment in many ways, it’s not in many others. I feel like this is not what I had signed on for when I got the job.

On top of all of this, my grandpa, who I have grown up with being very close to, is not doing well at all. I am scared to death of when he dies. I seriously have no idea what I am going to do. He has always been there. I grew up going to his and grandmas house every week and talking to them on the phone at least every other day. We are a very close knit family. Pa has always been a strength in the family, the one giving advice, helping with whatever needed to be fixed, and just being there to joke around with. He’s not only my grandpa, but he’s my friend. To watch the dementia take over his mind, his body become weaker and weaker each day, and to hear him ask who people are that he has known forever, it kills me to watch it. It hurts when the illness takes over and he gets mean. It hurts to know he’s in there somewhere, but the dementia is taking over his mind. It hurts to know that when he dies, not only will I be shaken, but my entire family will be different. I’m scared. Scared of what will happen to my dad when pa is gone. Scared and worried about grandma, and how will she do being at home all alone with him gone? Then I think to myself, he’s not gone yet, don’t get ahead of yourself. I just get so anxious about it all. I don’t want to miss out on the time that’s left by worrying about the what if’s and everything else. I just wish I could get my mind to stop sometimes.

I really don’t know if all that many people actually read this blog. I don’t really know if it matters. All I know is I can type faster than I can hand write and this blog helps me to get the thoughts out of my mind. To write on here and know that maybe someone is reading it, it makes me feel heard. And maybe, just maybe, someone can relate to what I have to say, and who knows, maybe my thoughts can help someone else too.

Thank you to everyone who read the previous blog I posted and went ahead and liked it. I really appreciate when people hit like, or leave a comment. It helps me as I said, to know I am heard.

To everyone having a hard time, keep your head up, each breath is a new beginning.

So It’s Been A Long Time…….

Yes, I know. It’s been over 2 months since I wrote on here last. It isn’t because I haven’t wanted to. It was mostly because I just couldn’t find the words. The right words. The words that would fully express what was going on in my head and make sense to those of you who actually read this. See, it didn’t even make sense to me, so how was I supposed to translate that into words for others to understand? I just couldn’t. I haven’t forgotten about this site though that is for sure.

Today, I decided I was going to write. Write whatever I could about whatever I could whether it made sense or not. So here we go.

The last couple of months have been a crazy road of ups and downs. Mostly downs on the inside, and ups on the outside. Let me explain. The last couple of months I have felt more depressed than I have in a long long time. All while on the outside smiling and telling people I am in the best place I have ever been and that I am proud of where I am in life. I have been telling those around me that I’m happy, content, and just going with the flow. In some ways those aren’t lies. In other ways they are. They aren’t lies in sense that I have come thousands of miles from where I was just 5 years ago in my recovery journey. Am I happy about that? Absolutely. Am I happier in many ways now than I was before? Definitely. Am I where I want to be in my life? Definitely not. That is where the lie comes in. I cannot say I am in the bad place I used to be in, but I can say I am in a different place. A different kind of bad, a different kind of depression, and a different kind of wishing for something more. Something better. I ache on the inside to be a person who has found love. To be a woman living on her own, taking care of herself, and surrounded by friends. Plural. FriendS. I have a couple of people I call friends. But mostly, the people in my life are what many would define as acquaintances. People who you see at events, occasions, etc, but also people who don’t know the real me. People who don’t bother to call on the weekends just to say hi, or check in and see how things are going. People who have your number in their phone, but never call. People who when I’m around them, we have fun, we laugh, all that, but once the night is over they are the people who don’t initiate ever hanging out again. I am at a place in my life where I feel very lonely. The people I can honestly say are my friends, Johanna and Sally, I love them to death.  I love the friendships I have with these two people. They mean the world to me. I wouldn’t trade them for anything. I just hope they know just how much I appreciate them, their random texts, and their hugs when I see them.

I am in a place in my life where I feel sad. Sad I am not more. Sad I don’t have that special someone. Sad I just don’t see my worth.

The depression is bad lately. Nowhere what it was 5, 6, 7, years ago, but different. I have skills now where I can recognize what is going on. I can help myself. But there are just so many days I wake up and feel disappointed I woke up. I  see other people worse off than I am, and I know how it is to be where they are, and I am soooo grateful to have come as far as I have, I just wish people would realize. Realize that even though I have come so far, made such huge strides, there’s still a road in front of me. It doesn’t mean the sadness goes away. It doesn’t mean I don’t still hurt on the inside. It doesn’t mean I don’t see or believe that I matter.

I love helping everyone else. I love seeing others smile. And yet, I hate it all at the same time. Let me explain. I hate it because I get jealous. I long for someone to notice the hurt inside of me the way I can notice it in others. I long for someone to tell me, it’s ok to not be ok. I long for someone to see I can’t be everything for everyone else, and nothing for me. All while at the same time, I put my energy into everyone else because I don’t see the worth I have. I don’t see myself being worthy of even my own time.

The past couple of months, I’ve been changing meds and it’s not been easy. Starting one med, stopping another, having a reaction emotionally and quickly stopping the new med and starting another new one. It’s been a total shock to my serotonin levels and my emotions have been all over. I’ve isolated. I’ve put all my energy into work, and doing my job, and when I get home I just have nothing left. I’ve been pushing those people I love the most away and  I hate it, but I “have” to in order to keep myself going to the point where I can say I am functioning and I am able to get through the day. I have to because if I wasn’t isolating, I’d be taking on everything of everyone else’s also and I’d breakdown even further. I know. It makes no sense at all. It’s the fucked up type thinking that comes along with the depression, the med changes, and in a way it’s a type of protection. I’m trying to protect myself from things getting worse.

I had an appointment with my psychiatrist, and her boss, who just so happens to be the psychiatrist who does my ECT treatments. We all sat and we talked about what has been going on. We talked about the med changes and how I’ve been feeling….all that stuff. We talked about things going on in my life. Things with my Grandpa, my mom. We talked about what I’ve been going over in therapy. I told them. I told them I’ve been diving into the sexual abuse by my uncle. I told them it’s not been easy, but it’s something I have been keeping inside for so long it was time I had to share it. I had to let it out. Well, he said maybe doing that in therapy and doing this med changes and such all at the same time wasn’t the best idea. They mentioned I stop talking about the abuse for a couple of months in therapy, take a break. They said give my body, my mind a chance to catch up, to adapt to the new meds, and then see if I even feel I need to go back to the subject of the abuse. I agreed. I told my therapist on Saturday I wanted to take a break. She 100% agreed also.

Life isn’t easy, it’s not meant to be. If life was meant to be easy, God wouldn’t have had to die on the cross. If life were meant to be easy, Christ wouldn’t have even existed. We all have tough times. We all have sin. We all need help, love, and companionship. I know I have God, I know I will never truly be alone. I know these things. I, though, also, am a sinner, and I long for earthly things. I long for human relationships, and I long for feeling like I matter to those around me. These are all things I need to work on every day. Things I need to pray about. I love that I can look forward to heaven. I hate. at the same time, how I have no control over when I go. I need to learn and accept many things. I need to.

There’s No Such Thing As “Being Prepared”

I let you all know I was going to be going to the first support group meeting for women survivors of sexual abuse. Well…..this past Tuesday was the first group. The Saturday before, I had an appointment with my therapist and I was feeling really good about going to this group. I felt……prepared…..ready…….confident. Then Sunday came, and Monday, and my anxiety started getting to be more and more. I relied on my good friend, talking to her a bit, and I relied on Ativan too….I can’t lie. I was getting nervous, but still felt like I could do this, like I knew my nerves were going to be there, but they didn’t have to get in the way.

Then Tuesday came…….I worked and worked and worked. I didn’t take a break at all that day. I felt like if I kept myself busy all day then maybe, just maybe, I wouldn’t think about the group that night, or my anxiety wouldn’t get any worse. I took another ativan, which helped. Keeping busy helped to an extent. I got off of work at 4pm and the group wasn’t until 6:15pm. So I called my dad, who’s office was halfway between my work and the location of the group, and I told him I was going to get some dinner and just bring it to his office and eat it there, and then sit there for a bit before heading to the group. I did that. I got my food, went to my dad’s office, and started to eat. I was so hungry because I hadn’t eaten lunch that day. However, it didn’t matter how hungry I was, my body was responding to my anxiety. I took a few bites and felt like I was going to throw up. So I gave my dad the rest of my food and just sat there staring at my phone as if I would actually remember what all I was looking at.

The time went soooo slow. But finally the time to leave my dad’s office and head to the group came. My dad knew where I was going and could tell how anxious I was. He gave me a little dad to daughter pep talk, letting me know he was proud of me and to take a deep breath, that it would all be good. I felt better after that. I drove to the group with my window down and my music up trying to distract myself and my mind. I got to the location and just sat in my car. Going back and forth with myself saying “you can do this, you are strong, you got this and it’s going to be good”  and then saying “no you can’t do this, you don’t deserve this, you aren’t worth this, it’s going to suck” and so forth. I sat there for what felt like an eternity, but was really only about 10 minutes arguing with myself and trying to gain the courage to get through those doors.

I finally got myself out of my car and into the building. I felt my face getting red, and I sat in the waiting room with 3 other women who at that point I didn’t know were there for the group also. The group leader came out and got us all and brought us to the group room where there were positive quotes and paintings on the walls, which I’m assuming were done by previous group members during some activity or something. I sat down, and when I finally found myself looking up, I looked across the table, past the person directly across from me, and saw a painting on the wall with the words, “Just Breathe”, and I knew I had to be breathing, but I wasn’t being mindful of it at all. I took a deep breath and finally was able to focus. I realized the group had started, but to this point I hadn’t heard anyone saying anything because I was so focused on my own anxiety.

We talked about a lot of heavy things. About our self-esteem and how the abuse had affected it. I hadn’t really thought about it, but I realized I didn’t have much positive self-esteem at all, that I don’t see my own worth.

We talked about the fact that the perpetrator of our abuse doesn’t deserve to have the power over us that we unconsciously give them. They were wrong, they were the ones who made the decision to do what they did, and we are not at fault. This was a really hard thing for me to even think about let alone grasp. I still am not at the point where I don’t blame myself for a lot of what happened to me, even though I was only a child, I feel like I should have stopped it. I know, it’s messed up.

When the group was over, I felt overwhelmed, exhausted, and in some ways, proud. I was processing everything we had talked about. I was thinking about the people who had been there, who have also been to previous groups and are further along in there recovery than I am. I thought about how I want to get to that point, but I also realized those people gave me hope. Hope that it is possible to get through this.

I went home that night and literally went right to bed, and fell asleep the fastest I have fallen asleep in a long time. I was so emotionally exhausted from everything over the last few days. I still had nightmares, but I have a feeling over time with this group and the healing that will come from it, those nightmares might, just might, get better.

There’s one last thing I want to mention. On Sunday before the group, I was in my class at church and I brought up the fact I was anxious about this upcoming group and that I would appreciate prayer. I shared the reason I was going to the group, which I haven’t shared with a lot of people in general, and the whole class stopped right then, a few put their hands on my shoulders, and they prayed for me, in that moment. They let me know they supported me, loved me, and that they would be praying the whole time for me. I can’t tell you enough how much that meant to me. I haven’t felt the way I did in that moment before. I felt like I was completely wrapped in God’s arms and that He was 100% with me and in me. It was amazing. I can’t explain it. I appreciate my church family so much. I appreciate my best friend, who often will pray for me also, and who lets me vent and laugh and cry with her.  And my family, who may not understand, but they love me through it. I don’t know what I would do without any of these people.