From Darkness to Light: Dee’s Story

Editor’s Note: Many times we do not realise how far we’ve come until we turn a page, to look back in reflection. This is why journalling is key to mental health recovery. Dee shares her personal journal entry which was written during her darkest times. Today she lives in victory and continues to make progress day by day. We are so proud of you, Dee! Thank you for sharing such a personal piece of your life with us 🙂 

I journalled this during a depressive episode about 1.5 years ago. Finding yourself in the depths of depression to the point of near suicide is really scary — I’m glad it was a one-time episode, and that I managed to get out of it. In this journal entry, I talk about “school” and “the kids” because hey — I’m in school … as the teacher!

Don’t know how to talk to people. Don’t know how to express myself. Don’t know how to make myself understood. The noise of every conversation is magnified in my head many times over, literally & emotionally.

All I do these days feels like school refusal, & sleep. It gets tiring talking to people. I want to scream bloody murder when the kids are so noisy. It doesn’t help that I feel so demotivated about school that I actually admitted it to my school’s year Head. I said I have no motivation to come to school. She asked me why and thinks it’s “all in my head” …

I don’t even feel like eating anymore. It feels stifling in school. The moment I get home, I’m junk bingeing on the the most random things — a square of chocolate, a sheet of seaweed, random biscuits from the containers, bits of dessert/leftover dinner, anything. This has gone on for a while & quite mild (I think!), but I’m often wondering if I should be worried about my eating habits.

Eating a full proper meal has become a chore for me. Whenever I think about the rice I have to eat, find myself annoyed that there’s rice, and decide to pick off the plates of dishes. One small piece at a time.

Sometimes I’d eat in the kitchen at a corner after everyone else is done with their dinner. Alone & on the kitchen floor – is that normal? I know people may find indulgence in junk food sometimes, but now even junk food doesn’t seem to make me happy these days.

Too much noise and I want to hide. I wanted to take my life again and confessed to the thoughts of overdosing at the IMH walk-in. I think the registration staff was considering warding me as an option.

All I could think to myself was — I don’t want to have to tell the people at work and draw any more attention to myself‘.

I’m struggling, but I don’t know appropriate ways to express it when most people either can’t help me, or don’t take me seriously ...

I eventually managed to get myself out of that toxic work environment after hitting this severe low point in my life. This decision improved things considerably. More significantly, the temptation to take my own life has definitely disappeared, and I’m thankful I haven’t found myself in such a dark place since.

But I share this to illustrate the inner monologue of someone in severe depression, yet also to serve as a personal reminder of how far I’ve come — owing to a combination of factors like extricating myself from a toxic environment, medication, therapy, and having a supportive church community.

I still struggle with asserting my needs and expressing myself in spoken conversation. Yet, as I press on and take baby steps every day, I’m certain that in time to come, I will be able to overcome these difficulties too, by God’s grace.

Dee is a twenty-something who is thankful for her church family and adult colouring books, both of which have been safe spaces that make her anxiety shrink a little when she has them around.

2 thoughts on “From Darkness to Light: Dee’s Story

  • February 18, 2016 at 9:05 PM

    Uhh, Nicole – whattt .. I just summoned sufficient courage to read your editor’s note on this & you’re too kind la! “Lives in victory”, lol what – where got, it’s more like tiny baby steps of cautiously hoping not to fall every day.

    Of course, church community, people like you who can understand, and a psych who tolerates the mess I am, really do help too! <3

  • February 18, 2016 at 9:10 PM

    Hey Dee.. You’re doing great! A victory is a victory, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem 🙂

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