The Reality of Relapse
This is definitely not a topic I imagined myself discussing firsthand what feels like so early on in my journey, but here we are! Hi everyone, this is Shaelyn Heise the Founder of Tee Up For Mental Health, and I want to share my experience through the past few months facing my diagnosis with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as well as "relapsing" in my anxiety and depression recovery. The reason for this post is certainly not sympathy, or for me to complain, my hope is maybe sharing my experience can help someone else.
Through Tee Up For Mental Health I have been very open about my mental health journey, I am so grateful to have an amazing platform to be able to share my experiences and possibly help others going through similar situations. With that, we have gone to schools speaking about how recovery is such a worthwhile process, and it truely is. However the past few months I was finding myself fall into my old negative habits, slowly but surely. I thought I was doing everything "right", I was attending therapy regularly, working a fulltime job, everything was on track. Although I thought I had everything under control, I slowly began to lose control of what was going on around me, I was having significant health issues, I went through a breakdown of a toxic relationship, and so on. I was beginning to doubt myself. Negative thoughts became more common than positive ones, and I was beginning to feel like I had in the past, hopeless.
Fast forward to approximately a month later. I am still feeling the same feelings, going through the motions of each day, but not really "living". I decided I needed to see someone, why was I trying to do this on my own? I advocate for people to speak up but I am too afraid to go speak to someone myself? I talk to both my psychiatrist as well as my family doctor, and I am back in counselling the following month.
This time something is different, I was seeing an EMDR specialist. Through talking to my doctors and therapists they had diagnosed me with PTSD, that stems from my childhood but with recent events had been triggered. This is a new "beast" I had no idea would be such a battle. I was used to dealing with my anxiety and depression, even though I had gone into a dark place a few times I knew what to do to find the light. This time was something different, I was having horrible night terrors, among many other symptoms I had experienced once or twice but never on a regular basis until recently. I will be honest EMDR therapy is the most difficult thing i've ever done, but I am doing it for myself. The past few months have been incredibly difficult, but I am dealing with stress that has been underlying most of my life and will occasionally show it's head in different ways. Dealing with these stresses directly I believe will help my anxiety on an everyday basis and help me be able to deal with my triggers in a managable way. I am still working on this every single day, and have my off days but overall I believe I am on my way to a more positive lifestyle.
The reason I am posting this update is not only because I have always said I want to be incredibly open and honest about my experience with mental illness, but also because I think this will in some way help me. Talking about mental health has always been my outlet for dealing with it, hoping that maybe I can help even one person. I hope to post a few more updates throughout the upcoming months, if there is a positive response to this one. I want people to know there is a light at the end of the tunnel, and they're not alone. If anyone needs someone to talk to, I can always be reached through the Tee Up For Mental Health website, Facebook Page or Instagram accounts.
Take Great Care,