What Started it All
8 years ago. 3.5 diagnoses. Nearly-committed. Ideologies. Multiple attempts. Made into a statistic. All from 1 "anniversary date" I didn't ask for.
If you know, you know.
I lost myself.
It completely obliterated any shred of who I was.
I had no idea what I was even doing in my day to day. It all seems so fuzzy to think back on.
I remember wishing I could be like who I used to be; funny, light-hearted, could take jokes kinda girl. Not so easily offended. I remember just wanting so badly out of my own f×cking skin.
The flashbacks. Oh my God, the flashbacks.
It was as if I was in this world, but the movie was still playing in my head all at once. And then my body would do this weird thing as if it was there in that moment of everything happening. And that's where I'd want to rip my skin off, to escape, to just be anywhere but my body.
I couldn't make it stop and I didn't know how to handle it.
I physically trembled nearly daily.
Panic attacks became a way too serious occurrence.
I stopped caring for myself...I stopped caring ABOUT myself.
And NO. ONE. KNEW.
It was like I'd had to be a whole other person the second I stepped out my front door. And the second I walked back in, that fake suit would come off and the tears would roll down. And I'd spend the evening laying in bed just wishing for the night to come...
...and the second night fell, I would internally scream for daylight again (having forgotten about the insomnia due to my nightmares). I couldn't handle them, so I'd wake up just as exhausted as I was before bed. And this vicious cycle was on loop.
Every day was groundhog day, just that there was no "spring" coming, rather, the dead of winter of your mind. Cold. Chilling. Vast. Numb. Lonely. Isolated.
I wanted the old me back.
But I was never going to come back.
The one thing they don't talk about is after you attempt, it's almost like inception because now you've also got the mind-f×cks from trying to leave this place on top of everything else. Almost feels like you're fooling yourself to think you even want to stay.
The triggers were daily. The triggers would change. The symptoms remained the same.
So I was on high alert. Looking in every corner for threats. For the darkness.
I started acting out at work, causing coworkers and my boss some serious frustrations, I'm sure. I was so terribly paranoid that I'd question every little thing and everyone's motives. I had lost all trust in anyone around me...I swear that is what sent me further into dissociation and psychosis. Not knowing if anyone was even paying attention, it almost allowed my brain to go more rampant.
One person took notice and I'll NEVER forget what she did for me that day. I'm crying as I type this because all it takes is someone else to give a helping hand when they notice something is "off".
You can't notice things are "off" with other people if you're too absorbed in your own steaming pile, or when your foundations are shaky and you aren't on solid ground...unless you've also been there before and can see yourself in another.
She noticed. It's like she could see my heart. She bared witness to a part of my soul, and she shared parts of hers. And that's when I realized she'd been here too.
And I will NEVER forget it. And I am so grateful for her. For that conversation.
...I am open about parts of my story, but I don't take it lightly.
I know there are souls who decide it's best to leave, and leave behind so much pain for others.
But I am so grateful I stayed.
Because what I can tell you is this, it wasn't my life I wanted to end, it was the fact that my whole being shifted completely in a single experience. It was the never-ending pain, the grief, the shame, the remorse, the paranoia, the flashbacks...it was those symptoms of my triggers that I wanted gone. I didn't know that then, like I know that now; and even though loved ones tried to remind me of this, I didn't believe them.
I don't say this for pity, I say this to open that conversation. I say it because I KNOW someone is out there who will know every word I'm saying and finally feel seen, heard, and understood.
I say it all because I am also no longer that version of me who would cry in the bathroom at work, or cry myself to sleep, or do things to numb it out.
Damn, if I could look into 25 year-old-Katelyn's eyes...I don't think I'd even recognize her, but I'm sure I would see her pain no matter how much she tried to push people out, get angry, and have an attitude.
And I'd reach out my hand, and I'd tell her she's not alone. And I'd tell her my story. And I'd guide her as best I can with what I know now, even if she didn't want to hear it...because I know that something in her soul will listen. And maybe she will stay, and extend her hand out to the woman behind her.
And I'd tell her it gets better, and it doesn't have to be this painful forever.
...nothin' but heart chakra love,