The nationwide lockdown in March 2020 exacerbated my state of mind. I was undergoing psychotherapy already then, for depression and anxiety, for over a year. I knew I was fragile, battling depression, body image issues, PCOD, and anxiety induced by relationship and family conflicts.
I started getting frequent panic attacks and anxiety attacks through the sleepless nights. Reading about the pandemic was nothing less of a sensory overload, and my psychologist suggested a few therapeutic methods to overcome them. Nothing seemed to work, and reluctantly, I reached out to her to connect me to a psychiatrist. The medicines did work, and I seemed to get better.
We got a doggo home, Murphy, and he immediately turned out to be my pillar of strength.
In September, I lost my grandmother to COVID. It was unexpected and very abrupt. I was in shock. I ate and drank away my lows. The only thing that helped ground my anxiety was my relationship with my (then) boyfriend. It was a sense of delusional calm, in retrospect. I plummeted to my lowest low when the two-year-long relationship ended in January 2021. The way things ended was traumatic, and it seemed like my life hit a dead end. I started to indulge in self-harm, self-destructive tendencies and fought with my loved ones. I hated my body, and I hated myself more than ever. I decided to go back to therapy when I realized I started to slip.
The lockdown that was imposed two months ago didn’t affect me in a negative sense, unlike the first one. And, I am so glad I got the time to heal from the trauma, focus on my growth, start loving my body and mind, completely detach, and be ever grateful for the close ones I have. What kept me going was, since I knew I was at my lowest, life’s only going to go upwards hereafter.
Mental health goes uncared for till we hit a slump. Being well aware of the taboos and myths around mental illnesses.
I have been actively advocating mental health for over two and a half years. To help be more empathetic and also professionally draw boundaries at the same time, I did a certification course in psychological first aid.
I do my bit by helping my friends and extended circles on Instagram understand the process of therapy, make them feel comfortable, and encourage them to seek professional help.
Further, I also help them connect with mental health workers.
Karke dekho, accha lagega!