Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Finishing Second Year of Med School and Being M.I.A

Hey reader, how's it going?

I haven't made a blog post in MONTHS, shit, almost a year. Let me try to play catch - up and just mention a few things that have happened since then.

( Let me just say, I think it's pretty amazing, first of all, that I'm writing from my couch, in St. Lucia. I'm with my favourite people and I am blessed. Okay, carrying on...)

In 2016, I also came back to St. Lucia for summer vaca and had a really good time! I spent a lot of time with my family, both immediate and extended, and also spent time with my boyfriend. Upon returning to Taiwan in September, and the months following, I fell, into a deep depression and I was so anxious ALL OF THE TIME. At the time, I had no idea what was happening to me and I didn't know why. Oh, and by the way, I've contemplated many times if I wanted to write about this, but it's nothing to be embarrassed about, because MANY people go through things like this.

Anyways, that first semester after I went back to school, I hit rock bottom. I was sad very often, felt guilty about everything, cried a lot, was homesick I think everyday, and was having anxiety attacks as well. I think I nearly lost myself. I felt numb a lot of the time too - meaning that I didn't feel happy, sad, excited, nothing. I felt like I was just existing. I felt insecure, I had no appetite, I lost weight. These feelings didn't happen EVERY DAY but they happened pretty often, and all I wanted to do was go back home. I often asked myself why I came all the way over there, when everyone I loved wasn't? I thought the school year would never end, and I'd feel like this forever. Oh, and a I couldn't even enjoy my favorite shows. I couldn't enjoy a lot of things I usually did. Needless to say, I felt black and white and of course was MIA from the blog.

Fast forward to January, I decided to see a psychiatrist, because I was at my wits end. I couldn't go through my second semester like this. I was skeptical about seeing him, but now I'm glad I did. He prescribed medication, and I was hesitant to agree to take them. I think at that point, I hadn't accepted that what I was going through, was depression. Plus, this is one of those things you think will never happen to you, but it does, so you just feel so weird. Anyways, with time, I began to cry less, I was able to wake up and show up to class everyday, I re-joined my band as a singer, I continued exercising and taking part in different school activities. Gradually I stopped feeling numb, and my emotions were coming back. I practiced a little bit of yoga, meditation, mindfulness, and gratefulness.

Fast forward again to now, I'm feeling like myself again, and that is a priceless feeling. I am able to smile with meaning, laugh until I cry, make stupid jokes, cry at sappy movies. I gained my weight back, and now I really don't mind my cellulite and love handles anymore! Ha! I am still taking the medication, but should be tapering down later this year. I had a lot of encouragement throughout that period of time from my sister, aunts, friends.

Of course, I thank God for his protection and guidance in all of this.

In saying all of this, the one thing, if any, you take away from this post, is to love yourself first. I had to re - learn how to do that, and it's still a learning process, but I love myself now more than ever, and I am so proud of myself for overcoming this, and finishing my second year!

If you think that you're going through anxiety or depression, please talk to someone, even a professional. Whether it's free or costs money, I believe it's worth it! Look into mindfulness, meditation, and gratefulness. Take time for yourself. Dance. Sing. Eat nice food. Sleep. Watch the sun rise/set. Spend time with the people you love, especially if they're physically close to you. Tell people you love them. Appreciate the fact that you have feelings, you can feel happy, sad, excited, disapointed. You can laugh.

In a month I return to Taiwan to receive my white coat, and begin my third school year! Can you believe it?!  Pretty soon I'll be called Dr. Henry! That's pretty cool if you ask me. To see your childhood dream actually happening is a wonderful experience, despite everything. Again, I am blessed, and favored. Thank God.

Thanks for reading if you've made it this far lol, and remember to take care of yourself. ♥ I may not know you, but I love you, and you're important and valuable. There's no one else like you on this earth. Go forth and conquer!!!