I was terrified to go, but knew that if I didn’t I would just get worse. I was afraid about what people might think of me if they found out. I was afraid of what this would do to my family. Frankly, I was embarrassed. But I knew I had to go.
I had to go to the hospital.
Did I have a broken bone? No.
Did I have to get stitches? No.
Did I have pain in my stomach that just wouldn’t go away? No.
It was my mind.
My mind had reached a point where it felt like it was going to break. I didn’t know what to do. I felt like my options had run out. What was I going to do with a mind that had trouble functioning? I cried a lot. I wanted to scream at the top of my lungs. I repeatedly asked God why was this happening to me. I never got a response. But I do think there is one.
I made my way to the hospital, my mind racing and my heart pounding. I felt a sense of dread settle in my chest. I didn’t know what was going to happen. Were they going to make me stay overnight? Was I going to be labeled a “crazy” person? What if they committed me and I couldn’t get out? These and many more questions flitted through my mind, and when I finally pulled into the parking garage of the hospital, I wanted to run away. I didn’t want to have to face my parents who I knew were waiting for me. I feared the stares of the other patients who would see an unstable woman walking through the doors.
How had I ended up in this situation?
Why was this my life?
Going to the hospital because of my mental health was both a terrifying and relieving experience in my life. I was afraid of what would be thought of me, but I also felt safe within the hospital walls. The smiles from the nurses and doctors made me feel less alone. The looks of genuine concern on their faces made me feel like I was being heard. My mental health was important to everyone involved, and for the first time in a long time I felt like maybe I could make it. With the right treatment I could get the help that I so desperately needed and have a chance at a fulfilling life. While sitting on that hospital bed I felt a sense of peace that I hadn’t felt before.
Life would be ok. I just had to stick around.
I am not embarrassed that I had to go to the hospital because of my depression and anxiety. I wouldn’t be embarrassed because of any other injury, so why should this be any different? I am thankful for the support of my family and loved ones who have stuck by my side and supported me through it all. I also want to thank the doctors and nurses at Riverside Methodist Hospital who showed me true kindness as they helped treat me. And lastly I want to thank God for never giving up on me and showing me that life is worth living.
I am not giving up on life.
And neither should you.