I’m so grateful for new beginnings. And I’m not sure where I’m going with this blog post, so this will be somewhat of a stream of consciousness post…
I feel like, actually I know, that I’m currently experiencing this wonderful thing called a new beginning. In what way? I guess my life doesn’t seem to look very different from what it looked like in recent months – I’m still living in the same place, working at the same job, I’m still engaged, and still love cute puppies and constantly crave hot cheetos, and I still look about the same physically. I think my friends are pretty much the same too, at least the ones that are more than just my social media “friends.”
I’m also still taking my trustworthy prescribed antidepressant. So what’s new? It’s hard to explain, and I don’t quite know how to put it in words plainly. I guess you can say, I’m happier. I’m not sure what happened – it’s like a shift in mindset, perspective on life and things, a change in attitude. But it’s not the same as a “feel good” thing that you think so that you force or trick yourself into believing things that sound nice or cheesy.
Perhaps my spontaneous trip back to my hometown last week did the trick. I was at a point in my life where I felt like I was drowning and there was no way out, and home was about 3,000 miles away on the west coast in sunny California, while I was stuck in gloomy New England, where the deprivation of vitamin D is so real. Then as I was crying over the phone and texting my dear mother, she told me to take a trip back to recoup at home, where my strongest support system is. I received her text right after I got into work that Thursday, and then I let my boss know I was going to fly home that very day. She witnessed my agony and was completely understanding – so thankful for her – and off I went. Walked as fast a I could to the train station to go home, threw some clothes and things into my carry-on, disposed of anything in my room that could potentially rot, and then off I went to the airport! By the evening I was having dinner at a place called home, and I finally felt like there was light at the end of the tunnel.
Then during that week, when I had the time to reflect about many things, as well as recover from the homesickness that I didn’t know I had, I realized spending some time apart from my significant other was actually a healing to our previously unhealthy relationship. Granted, neither of us really knew what exactly was wrong, but we knew we needed help as a couple.
Long story short (because I’m too lazy to go into detail), my time away from my regular routine helped me step back and look at what needed to change, and what could be enhanced, and I had time to consider things adequately enough (hopefully) that I could make decisions about what I would do differently when my short home-vacation time was over. I guess writing what I’ve written thus far in this post has helped me come to a single word, though I would hesitate to call it “all-encompassing” – priorities.
So, priorities. I definitely haven’t figured my life out yet, and perhaps I will always have more to learn and figure out, but I believe what has saved me out of my deep dark slump is my realization and recognition of what is important in each area of my life: career, relationships (of all kinds), personal development, hobbies…
As someone who has suffered from a history of depression, I’ve found that one of my topmost priorities is taking steps to mitigate any and all depressive symptoms, with the help of doctor, therapist, books, google… whatever I can find. Google has helped me so much. In this new beginning, I’ve learned about mood-boosting foods and supplements, as well as things I can incorporate into my regular routine, such as light therapy (I got a therapy lamp off of Amazon) and regular sleep and exercise. And to top that all off, I realized it’s possible to actually recondition the way I think. Another random thing I learned is that smiling (even when you don’t feel like it) tricks your body physiologically to really believe that you are feeling happy. I’m going to use that hack more often. 🙂 😀
And the best part of all of this self-discovery process is that this has all somehow been helping to improve my relationship with my fiance and allowing for sweeter times spent together. Not sure how that works. I guess taking care of myself in a healthy way helps take care of the ones closest to me as well.