Today I did something I had promised myself I would never do again. Today was my first day of counseling… again. For those of you who don’t know I had tried counseling back my sophomore year of high school. 7 years ago is when my anxiety increased to a state that I needed help. I tried what is called a “Biblical Counselor.” I am a very strong Christian, but let me tell you, that was the most unGodly experience of my life. This woman told me I had anxiety strictly because I didn’t trust God enough. She told me this was all my fault and if I read the Bible more I wouldn’t feel this way. After about a month of seeing Dr. Crazy I swore off all counselors for the rest of my life.
Yes, I am aware that some of you are laughing by now. “But Lexie, I thought you were in school to become a mental health counselor?”
That is correct. I never said I didn’t believe that counseling worked. In fact, I never said I didn’t believe that counseling would work for me. I just had such a bad experience and I knew the next time I went to counseling, all I would think about was that no matter what anyone said, everything is my fault.
Well, I was right.
The actual act of being in counseling went better than I expected. I liked my counselor and in only the hour I had with him he gave me some helpful tricks to calm down my anxiety and anger and bring me back to reality.
Oh thats right, I didn’t tell you why I am back in counseling.
As most of you know (from either knowing me or my previous blog posts) I struggle with anxiety and depression. I have struggled with these for years, but have been able to control them (for the most part). I learned my triggers and I learned how to calm myself down. Within the last 3 months my anxiety and depression have gotten so out of control that nothing was helping. I cut out all fast food and anything with caffeine, I tried breathing exercises, I tried talking to friends, I tried natural vitamins to help. But it didn’t. It got to the point of my insomnia had come back too. About two hours of sleep was the most I could get a night. And it wasn’t consecutive. Then finally the anger came. Anger at everyone and anyone, including myself. I hated my mental disorders. I hated my body, I hated how I felt and acted. I hated my past. I hated who I let myself be. I hated how I didn’t have anyone to talk to about any of this. I was alone. I am alone.
So now here I am, back in counseling. Hoping to learn how to cope with my tragic life. But of course, this was much deeper than saying I have anxiety and depression and need help. This was listing to a stranger everything tragic that had happened to me in the last four years. This was explaining to a man only a few years older than me that my Mammaw passing away triggered my depression. It was talking about my physically and emotionally abusive ex fiancé. It was talking about loosing my baby. It was talking about my trust issues. It was talking about dropping out of college. It was talking about losing my faith. It was talking about everything and anything that led to my anxiety, depression, and anger to get worse.
And it was talking about my suicide plan. Not thoughts, plan.
I had to sit there and describe, to some man I had just met, the plan that I had created 4 years ago to kill myself. A plan that took me years to try and block out of my mind so that I wouldn’t keep tempting myself to do it. A plan that I am now reliving every time I close my eyes.
Please don’t get my wrong. I do love my life, I am back in college, I have a great job as a therapist, I have the best relationship with my family that I have ever had, and I am in a serious relationship with the most loving and amazing man. Life is great. The problem is that my past continues to haunt me. I never learned how to cope with the pain. Just ignore it and pray it goes away. When I finished explaining everything to my therapist, I left him speechless. He was appalled at everything I had gone through in such a short amount of time and at such a young age. Half the stuff I told him and have written in this blog I haven’t told anyone. I only recently even mentioned my suicidal past to my boyfriend. I keep everything to myself, and apparently, thats what my problem is.
My main problem with counseling is that now that I have relived all the traumatic events of my life, I have started getting flashbacks and feeling the same way I felt the first time. But with only having one session, I have not learned how to cope with everything. I am currently writing this in the middle of the night during one of my insomnia episodes, completely alone, while crying. I know God has me going through this for a reason. And I absolutely trust Him. But right now, right now I am miserable.
**This is not a blog post to say how terrible counseling is. This is a post for me. To see how this counseling thing turns out. To see if I am actually able to be helped or if I am going to feel like this for the rest of my life.**