If you follow me on Instagram, you will have seen that I have been off of my antidepressants for 3 weeks and counting. I was on them for 3 years and they are very addictive. This post is going to be about the journey I’ve had so far with recovery. Recovery is definitely a place I am in at the moment, it is a slow process. My personal opinion is that when you experience a trauma, you never fully “recover” however you learn to live the new way of life. It is about acceptance. It is about forgiving. It is about understanding yourself. And obviously about loving the new person you are.
Compared to 3 years ago I am a COMPLETELY different person. I am so much more carefree, full of life and happy. This isn’t a post to “brag” about how happy I am, it is more an example for those suffering that it does get better. I used to be so dependent on others for my happiness. I used to hate myself. I had no self confidence, despite being the loudest person you will ever come across. My values were all wrong. I believed I didn’t need help and that I’d be fine dealing with it on my own. Well that was wrong. I lashed out at everyone for a long time and wasn’t coping well.
The first step to recovery is accepting you need help and that you are not okay. I was angry at the world. I had my heart broken multiple times, losing my mum was a major hit to how I love. This isn’t a bad thing, however, it has consequently changed how I love others, including romantically. I saw something on Twitter this morning: “the hardest pill to swallow is coming to terms with the fact that some people will never change no matter how much you want them too”. This hit home with me, because although you can’t change others, you can better yourself. It is okay to outgrow people. It is okay to put yourself first and recognise you deserve better.
As I discussed in a previous blog post, my therapy was a huge part of my recovery. I cannot encourage people enough to talk. TALKING IS THE BEST THERAPY. I am such a talker, I can only talk to people I trust about my deepest feelings and some people can feel scared to do so. But what can actually happen? Talking might not make everything better, granted but a problem shared is a problem halved.
Take each day as it comes. If you’re feeling unreal one day and then really shitty the next, ride it out. Tomorrow will come. Recovery isn’t as simple as deciding you’re going to be better, its a journey where you’ll learn so much more about yourself than you did when you was in the hole.
My recovery has come with hurdles, speed bumps and everything in between, in the form of arguments, waves of sadness, shitty people, shitty boys. But it has also came with laughter, feeling alive and realising that life really is amazing.
Though, as I mentioned earlier, antidepressants are SO addictive so when I have come off of them, I have experienced withdrawals. Not the sort that you get if you’re addicted to illegal drugs, it is a manageable withdrawal. I have felt my feelings in all angles. For someone who hasn’t ever taken citolapram, it basically numbs you, it numbs the sadness but also numbs happiness. You can still feel, but it isn’t as strong. Since coming off of them the freedom and emotion I have felt is so weird because 3 years is a long time but it is amazing. I am laughing harder, smiling wider and generally appreciating everything more. I have also experience slight shakes and feeling hot and cold, but this is normal, it is my brains chemicals adjusting themselves without the support of an antidepressant drug.
I also would like to make it very clear that I would not rule out going back on antidepressants – after all they saved my life. Just because I have come off of them doesn’t mean they are not an option for me. But right now I am okay and that is all that matters.
This is my recovery, I am still on the journey and you’re on it with me.