Christmas is quickly approaching. For me, the last two Christmases have been the most bittersweet days.
On one hand I love it. I finally get to have the pure Christmas experience. Waking up on the 25th to a decorated Christmas tree, with family all around me. Spending the day watching movies, playing board games, decorating ginger bread houses that have were made from scratch the day before.
But on the other hand I’m full of heartache. And so conflicted. Do I call the family that I have been so hurt by? Do I let the past go, if only for one day. Do I tell them that I love them, and that I’m sorry that I can’t see them. Do I put my own feelings, my own hurt and anger aside.
I’ve ignored texts for weeks now. “What do you want for Christmas?” “Are you going to come visit when you’re on break?”
I know that I am going to try and have fun. Enjoy the holidays. Friendmas, Christmas, New Years. But how will family fit in? Will my anxiety and depression keep me from truly enjoying myself.
It sucks that I become so anxious about what is the most festive time of the year. But it’s also something that I’ve become so accustomed to.
It’s been a while.
I’ve been sort of distant from everything, everyone.
Last month was hard, it was chaotic, it was the perfect storm. I thought my dad was going to die. I had a more than hard reunion with my brother. I was caught up in family drama. I got behind in school. And I switched meds yet again.
But I’ve been home for a while now. My dad is stable, and even went home today. I should be caught up in school by now, but focusing is hard. I feel like I should be settled by now. Like I shouldn’t still feel like everything is chaotic and stressful.
But in all honesty things are so much worse now. When everything was happening I was forced to live in the moment. And as much crazy and sadness I was around, I also had my support system. Now I just feel lost.
My depression and anxiety are at an all time high. I have a really hard time getting to class, and when I do it takes a lot not to have a panic attack. I did have one on Monday and started balling when my teacher asked if I was ok.
Anxiety sucks. Depression sucks. And neither one of them give a fuck about your schedule or your goals.
It’s that simple…
Well, at least the big picture is that simple. It gets more complicated when you’re close to it. When it comes to your relationship with the addict it gets more complicated. It can be hard to separate the person from the disease. How much of the lies and the constant insults are truly meant?
My dad is in the hospital currently. As soon as I heard I got a flight and flew up to see him. I’ve been in the state for a week and yet have only been able to get myself to the hospital twice. It is so hard to see him in such a horrid state. He’s in the ICU. Yet in an ironic way he looks healthier than he has in years. He is decently hydrated and oxygenated for the first time in years. His skin actually has color. But for the first several days he was intubated, although he is now finally waking up.
But him being awake almost makes it harder to see him. No, it definitely makes it harder. He’s been in the hospital for 11 days. That’s 11 days away from alcohol. Which means that he is with drawing. So he is irritable. He even punched a nurse. SO he is restrained. With good reason, however it is hard to see him tied down.
It is hard to decide whether I need to be here near him, or if I should go home. I am missing class. College class, so I as missing a lot of work. I’m falling farther and farther behind. And I hate seeing him. He has hurt me (emotionally) several times. However, is it him or the disease?? STUPID ADDICTION!
So here’s a new thing I may do. I’ve only done it once so far and it kicked my butt, so who knows how long the motivation will last. But he’s a way to make TV a little better for you. I recommend at the end of the show you go through and do any part of the exercise you haven’t gotten to during the show.
This includes post includes three shows that I’m currently watching live. Depending on how well I keep up with this I may add more. Possibly for “Lucifer” or “The Mindy Project.” Let me know what you think in the comments below.
Also shout out to my brothers girlfriend for the idea and the majority of the “This is Us” workout.
“The Good Doctor” Workout
Dr. Melendez is an ass to Shaun
Claire is compassionate
Young Shaun flashback
“On your feet thinking” aka MacGyver moment
Lea and Shaun flirt
Shaun doesn’t catch sarcasm
Shaun is especially blunt or upfront
Dr. Glassman has a mentor moment
- 30 second side plank (each side)
“This is Us” Workout
Kate weighs herself
Kevin pops pills
Beth & Randall disagree
Rebecca or Kate sing
Toby is jealous
Deja lashes out
Little Kate weight reference
Kevin takes off his shirt
Randall is anxious
- 30 second side plank (each side)
“Grey’s Anatomy” Workout
Dr. Bailey is a boss!
Viewing of x-ray/ scan
Meredith voice over
Code/ patient crashing
Patient is “closed up”
Romance (from kissing to sex)
- 30 second side plank (each side)
I’ve known for a while now that living in a dorm wasn’t working for me. Campus life just definitely wasn’t my style.
I’m not one for parties, or even study groups really. I’m more of a lone wolf. I like to study in quiet, and alone time is important to me.
Being in a dorm, there are people around constantly. There is always noise, and you can never get your room dark.
For me personally, I was place in the honors college dorms even though I wasn’t in the honors college. This made me feel like an outcast. Everyone in my dorm had classes together, and had group outings as the honors college group. Then there was me, who had a completely different schedule and very little in common with any of them.
This makes living in the dorms even harder for me. I never felt welcomed. I never had a moment free of anxiety.
So on Monday, I went to the office of student accessibility. I have accommodations through this office, listing my anxiety and depression. They allow me to leave class if I feel panicked and other small adjustments like that. I was told that by going through their office I would have the best chance of getting out of my lease.
Only a day later, I received an email saying my request was denied.
So I feel trapped. I feel disappointed.
So, the other day a girl I knew from high school posted on insta. It was a photo from my junior year, with five of us that used to be friends. She’s only friends with one of the girls in the photo now, and shocker it’s not me.
She captioned it, “before people became fake bitches……… in a weird mood. thanks for all the friends that stayed true #staygold”
I’m writing because it was a moment where I realized how much I’ve grown. I looked at the photo and I wasn’t mad. I was disappointed that the friendship didn’t work, but not really that upset.
I DIDN’T LET THE DRAMA GET TO ME!
A year ago a post like that would have killed me. I would have thought about it for hours, days, probably even weeks. I would have constantly gone over ever aspect of our friendship and tried to figure out what I did wrong, where I went wrong. I would have found a way to blame myself, to make myself feel guilty.
But I didn’t. I acknowledged that I have moved on. Our friendship wasn’t working for me, so I separated myself. I wasn’t rude, I just separated myself.
So in this moment I’m proud of myself. And I’m writing a small post, acknowledging my tiny personal victory.
I’m a freshman in college, and I’m living on campus. I’m quickly realizing that that is a huge mistake. I’m surrounded by triggers 24/7.
I get it. It’s your first time living alone. Why not party? Drink, smoke, have the time of your life.
However, I can’t stand being around it. I makes me think of my dad and how sick he is. And how addiction can completely destroy someone.
I’ve always said that when I grow up I’m never going to drink. For as long as I can remember, even in elementary school.
Then high school came around and I was like fuck that. I drank, and had my fun.
But now even being around other people drinking is such a trigger. It makes me anxious, puts me on edge.
So now here I am, living in a college dorm. Surrounded by people partying. And I’m sober, and can’t handle being around any of it.
I’m trying to figure out if moving Home is the right thing. But wherever I go, alcohol will be there. It’s not a trigger I can avoid. I need to learn to live with it.
My dad has been a recovering alcoholic the majority of my life. And when he wasn’t a recovering alcoholic he was simply an alcoholic. I wasn’t always able to tell if he was currently drinking, but I know for sure that he is now.
My high school graduation was a few months ago, and he was hospitalized. He tried to go into rehab 3 days prior to the ceremony so he could see my speech and be there for me— sober. However, withdrawals suck. He was moved to intensive care and told if he left the hospital he would die.
Later that week came the news that he would need a new liver. Furthermore, that if he was to get a transplant he would need to be sober for five years, and that he wasn’t going to make it five years. Recently I was informed that that number was brought down to two years.
It hadn’t really hit me. I’ve know for a while how sick he is, but it didn’t really truly hit me until recently. I was watching a movie about some college kids and a girl said her dad was far gone. Then I realized that someday soon that would be me.
I realized that my dad wouldn’t make it to walk me down the isle. To meet his grandchildren. I still haven’t truly processed it yet, but it’s definitely starting to hit me.
Addiction is a horrible disease. Not only has it limited my time with my father, but it’s made it so that a lot of the memories I do have of him are affected. The memories of his drunken attempts of parenting will always stick with me. I love him so much, but it’s hard to separate the man from the disease sometimes.