To stop or not? That's the question.

I feel like a person of no shape. My life has no shape either. I just keep shaping it every day—sometimes I make progress, but more often I fail.

I feel like a person of no shape. My life has no shape either. I just keep shaping it every day—sometimes I make progress, but more often I fail. The shape I can give to it is fragile as a snowman in the summer. Am I really taking care of myself? Or am I making it worse day by day? Is it normal that you feel like doing something but can't move at all? Or is it just because I don't allow myself to stop? I feel so lost that I start to beautify other people's lives, their being too busy to finish their daily tasks. I'm just so jealous of them.

The anxiety feels like a devil in my body. It grows and grows, but has never aimed to motivate me to pursue my life. I just sit on my bed all day, thinking about what to do to feed it. Not a podcast, not journaling, nor reading. By the way, writing did help to release these thoughts sometimes, when I felt the energy to, and that’s why I’m writing this nonsense right now, doing some vomit writing.

You have nothing else left to do but wait. Time is passing all the time. I feel like I am wasting my life. Does it mean that I have to increase my dose of anti-anxiety pills? Or should I just listen to what the doctor said and be patient? 

After going on medication, I persuaded myself to stop. That seemed like the right thing to do for my health. Stopping entails allowing myself to do nothing for a whole day, if I don’t feel like doing anything. I wasn’t productive for a long time even before taking pills, but I would always have this unrealistic wish for productivity. I would push myself to sit in front of the laptop, even if I was just scrolling websites and reading random articles. I would force myself not to have fun nor relax. Now I get it. It makes no sense. 

I wanted to stop this vicious spiral. But a question remained—stop for how long? Let alone whether it’s a good choice or not. Stopping did help, especially during the first month of medication. You feel like you are clinically certified by others, and finally by yourself. I tried several ways to take care of, or say, comfort myself—staying indoors when it's beautiful outside, and going out when it starts to rain. I started my days by watching TV shows which I've already watched several times. It gives me space to feel low. And it did work, despite the fact that once its comforting effect ended I felt bad again. You could be a heavy smoker, but trust me, it doesn't help, except for making you feel sick. Every routine I've tried to build just vanishes at the blow of a breeze.

Over two months into medication, what’s the right thing to do now?

The reason why I brought up this question is that I feel a struggle inside me growing stronger by the day. I look at myself as essentially different from many others—I feel like  a person who hasn't built a life yet. Is it a privilege for someone with depression and anxiety to have no job and income? Is it a privilege to not make a weekly plan? Earning money is not my priority, although I do need it. What really matters to me is that I long to be needed by this world in any way. I desire to function in this society. I want to be a yoga teacher, a writer, a painter, or any other profession I haven’t come up with yet. I need a role that gives me a  sense of value.

But if I just stop, I will never achieve this goal. And this is what originally caused my anxiety and the ensuing depression. Every day you give that look to yourself, the look that you would give to a loser. Pills did improve my sleep, but won’t help me to get rid of this feeling. I need to do something to build my life, making plans and completing daily tasks. I haven’t, because I’m too afraid of the uncertainty that comes with taking action—although there is nothing certain in my life right now. I’m too afraid to fail, which in turn may also be strengthening the belief that I’m a loser. 

Time, time is passing. I still have a long life to live. I know I need to push myself to do a little bit of work every day, either running my yoga instagram account, or writing regularly, or teaching Chinese. The pills are here to help me, not to make me feel worse. I already benefited from stopping, but now it’s time to start.

This article was edited by Alessandro Ceschi.


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