I don’t particularly care for parts of the 12 step program but I like these steps and have combined them into one. When in the throes of mental illness, I told a lot of lies and caused a lot of pain and heartache to the people whom care about me the most: my brother and my mother. For this I truly feel repentant and have no excuse other than to offer the reason that I was in the depths of severe depression and anxiety and was not thinking very clearly. But it’s not an excuse.
I also lied to my care team last year and told them I was doing well when I wasn’t. I did not communicate with them at all other than to tell them things were going well when they were not. I paid heavily for these decisions because I ended up inpatient in November and December of last year in mental health crisis. I had to go through ECT which, I guess was my struggle, similar to what an addict goes through when dealing with withdrawal.
Facing mental illness is very hard to do. I was in such despair that self-care went by the wayside. I went days without showering and wearing the same clothes. I ate at odd times. I stopped taking the vitamins that I have to take because I underwent bariatric surgery. Eventually things got so bad that I had a bottle of Ambien open and was ready to swallow the remainder of the medication.
I was probably addicted to Ambien because I used it during the day for sleep. I just wanted to sleep the day away because the only relief I experienced came with night. I’m now off of Ambien and been off of it for 3.5 weeks. It was hard going but I did it and will never use a benzodiazapine again. Sleep has gotten better. I’m doing better now overall and taking better care of myself.
I’m scared of going back to work and I don’t feel ready to do that just yet. As an intermediate step, I’m planning to volunteer for the Brandywine SPCA. This is part of my plan to get better. The lies end and are no longer part of my default response. I’ve come a decent way but I’ve still a long way to go. On my next appointment with my therapist, I will tell him that I lied to him last year as well. This is all part of the process of admitting completely the nature of my wrongs.