I didn't realize how emotionally dependent I had been on other people: first my son, then my partner; until the son had to go on vacation too soon after the partner left. And on an exceptionally bad day, I took a lot extra anti-allergy pills (that I had already been abusing for its side effects) just 'cause I wanted to 'sleep'. I just didn't know how to be me outside of my mom/partner duties; it got too quiet in the house, thus giving the voices in my head more audio, and then there was the part of me that was still bleeding so much from being left that, to stem it, I did the one thing all the counselling materials warn against: trigger my own self for temporary relief.
I had been unable to truly let my ex go at the time, you see, so I stayed open to contact, every late-night email, the occasionally sliced in 'I miss yous' and stuff, and then of course the eventual drop-bys: all stuff that I knew better than to go getting hopeful on. Even though my subconscious knew this was going to end up hurting way more than the actual leaving, I allowed it anyway. In retrospect, it was pathetic, but I just needed the fix, sort of--you know, be emotionally busy, take care of someone, feel needed: that was my fix. There also was a part of me that thought I'd make up for all the times I'd been (maybe) too needy, (maybe) too demanding, (maybe) too heavy...ish. But deep down, I knew what was happening, knew I needed to dead it before it blew up in my face. Blow up in my face, it did, of course. But then I knew that was going to happen.
As much as I wish I was special enough to be the only girl in the world who'd ever allowed, or even invited, a peek-a-boo with the ex because it just seemed hard to unlearn the routines and shared habits; or that I am the only single mom in the world who truly does not know what to do with herself when the kid is not there needing mommy every other minute; I know that I am not: that special. I know that there's those of us who keep ourselves anchored to people and stuff because they keep all our hell from breaking loose; sometimes it's our kid, or partner, or some relationship, or an addiction...or social media.
What's worse? Sometimes you don't even know how very heavily you've been hinging your emotions on these things until they're not there to keep you anchored and you just realize that what you thought was you "keeping it together" was actually you "keeping it redirected." This isn't altogether a bad thing, of course. But then again, it probably is; depending on what your pieces look like when the anchor takes a break and you crash (sort of like what happened to Damon when his 145-year-old goal turned up nonexistent--but I'd keep the Vampire Diaries analogy for later, lol).
This happened to me.
But in a weird twist of fate, someone I trusted with all of my vulnerability recently got so venomously peeved that they made a weapon of my entire emotional/mental make-up: how I got here plus all it's taken me to hold it together, including all the bad days when I just couldn't manage 'love and light,' to the point where my lowest low: the overdose was flung at me all in an attempt to gaslight me and deal the more demonizing blow; and it was all the clarity I needed for the next phase of my life. And all the new choices I'm gonna have to start getting comfortable making. Because sometimes, really, you can't be leaning on people that desperately. Even if they are your kin. And some of us just might have to take the romance out of emotional overdependence or clingy neediness; especially those of us who got extra portions of feelings and are quick to get to the "end of the world" when we get dropped by the people we'd been (over)depending on for a catch.
I learned this the bitter way. And while my insides thundered about how this person wielded their details, I was able to refrain from providing a counter. And more importantly, I was able to not let it push me over any edge. Because I had finally gotten to that point where, thanks to that holiday experience and everything before and after it, I have attained a complete knowing of ME; and as long as I'm not camping in my vomit or peacocking in my bad days, as long as I am not unwilling to admit to my occasional excesses, as long as I am not afraid--or ashamed--to take your allegations and actually consider that there may be some truth to the feeling you're expressing (about me) and make amends; and as long as I stay making intentional choices about the side of me that comes to the fore more; then I don't have to explain anything beyond the personal conviction you've gathered evidence for. And I most certainly won't be killing myself for real (not now, not ever) just to prove that the last time hadn't been faked. It is not my job to explain my psychology to people who only just want it for weaponry.
And I hope that you know that too, survivor: that it is not on you to 'convince' anyone that your depression, your anxiety, your paranoia, your hopelessness, your insecurities and your occasional or even regular feelings not being "able to continue" are real. I hope that you conserve that energy expended on explaining for days when you just...can't. I hope that you quit going to war with yourself for people who will only ever define you by your bad days. I hope that you know when--and who--to not beg for the kindness, love, and understanding that should freely be extended to you; because I'm betting that you hand it out just as freely, because it is you who knows what it is: balm to the soul.
But beyond that, please know that you are not your diagnosis; you are not your feelings; and you most definitely are not your bad days. Tomorrow can actually be better. But it's alright too if you don't see that now. You're here today, that's all that matters.
And I am counting on your being here tomorrow...