I don’t know a thing about blogging. I don’t even have snap chat. But I’m hoping this can be a therapeutic outlet for me as well as a connection with anyone who has ever felt as alone as I have in life. I often think about all the of terrible things I have done while drunk and/or high, and I don’t have the courage to tell anyone who knows me but I can’t keep it inside anymore – so here we are. Most people wouldn’t suspect me to have severe depression and anxiety. I was told my whole life how pretty and smart I was, and I maintained a bubbly (albeit often fake) personality. And I can’t deny that I lived a crazy, fast, unreal life working in luxury fashion in NYC. At some point, as I continue my confessions, we will get to the first time I cut myself, and that’s when it gets juicy as a story but embarrassing and pathetic as a reality.
First and foremost – I am an addict. I’m an addict who has suffered from severe depression and anxiety my whole life. On one hand I want to say that’s not an excuse but on the other hand it is. My childhood and family situation is and was ideal which just makes me feel guilty. I grew up with two loving parents (still married) who supported me in every way. At the risk of admitting how spoiled I was, I was given my dad’s 2 year old A4 Quattro when I turned 16. I was lucky. I wanted to try everything as a kid, and they let me even though I would quit in less than a year. Piano? Sure here’s an electric piano (keyboard?), horseback riding? sure … soccer, softball, dance, volleyball… You name it, I tried it then quit.
I was a sensitive kid and idolized my brother and father because I thought they were the coolest, and I desperately wanted them to think I was just as cool. I was anxiety ridden and lived in fear of embarrassing myself. I will never forget my attempt at softball. I struck out my first at bat during our first scrimmage and was so mortified I said I hurt my ankle and wanted to go home. And that was it for softball.
The thought of failing, or receiving anything less than an A, scared the shit out of me. When I think back, I don’t know why I was this way because my parents didn’t put pressure on me to get all As. I put the pressure on myself. In elementary school, I would stay up until 3am working on posters, projects, presentations, etc. One time I made a poster board about dogs and glued a dog bone to it … obviously one of our dogs proceeded to eat it and ruin the entire thing so I started over at midnight the night before the due date. Other times I would just decide I didn’t like what I had done, would throw it out, and I would start all over – again at midnight.
There is one fear that ruled my life from as early as I can remember until high school that I have never shared with anyone. I lived in fear of peeing my pants. I didn’t even have a problem with this, but I was terrified that I might end up in a situation where I needed to pee and had no where to go. This fear literally ruled my childhood. I faked sick for every field trip possible because I was scared I might have to pee while on the bus and what if I couldn’t hold it??? Brownies campouts where we would go on long hikes… Where was I supposed to pee? Nope – not happening. I don’t feel well and need to call my mom to go home.
My parents sent me to a therapist for the first time when I was in 6th grade. I have a terrible memory – which I will talk about later – but I remember my mother telling me she made an appointment with a therapist for me. Luckily for her – my older brother had a girl friend that also rode our school bus; she would talk about her shrink, and I thought it was super cool. So when my mom told me she made this appointment, I was like hell yes. She confessed that she hadn’t slept all night because she was so nervous to tell me and see my reaction. The reason my parents felt the need to put me into therapy was simple. Like I said – I faked sick to get out of things that made me anxious. Therefore I had a stomach ache literally every other day because everything made me anxious. So when my mom said she made an appointment, she said it was because I was having so many stomach aches all the time. Since I thought it was “cool”, everyone was happy. At some point later in time I learned that they sent me to therapy because I didn’t want to see other people or do anything with friends. This is true – it was all true. Anxiety made my stomach hurt, and what if I was at a sleepover and had to pee in the middle of the night? What if I became the weird girl that had to pee all the time!? I lived in fear of my friends saying “Didn’t you just go?” The anxiety that I might have to pee so often my friends would make fun of me actually kept me awake the entire night. I ended up having my mom pick me up in the middle of the night more often than not. Finally we even created a “secret code” so when I called on the phone to ask permission, I could let her know I wanted her to say I wasn’t allowed to stay.
The pee story is getting long, but it’s not over yet. I’ll never forget a time we went camping for Indian Princesses, and one day everyone was going out on canoes. I stayed behind at the cabin alone because I was scared I would be on the canoe on the water and have to pee with no where to go. Indian Princesses is a father-daughter dynamic and I told my dad to go without me. There was a period of time where we would drive to Canada as a family for a variety of reasons. The drive is maybe 7 hours, but I was so nervous about peeing my pants I cried wolf every hour. What if we were in a stretch where there was no where to pee??? I even remember one time my mom came into the bathroom with me because they didn’t believe I could possibly have to pee that much. For me the anxiety of possibly not having a place to pee genuinely made me feel like I had to pee. This is such a weird subject … but when you suffer from anxiety you can know its unwarranted but you still can’t stop it.
Other obstacles… summer camp… middle school camp…basically any kind of camping. To come with my next rant …
I suppose it’s no surprise that this was a popular book in our house…