Something so small, and the entire world collapses in on me, like a star imploding in my chest and darkness spreading from there. The pain is physical. As if my heart is breaking in every one of my nerve endings over and over again. I can’t breathe. I can just cry and think and obsess and cry and think and obsess. The pain is so excruciating that I can feel my body fighting against it, trying to shut down every ounce of sensation just to protect myself from the pain. Dissociation and pure terror are fighting each other for control. And the outcome? I am sat hyperventilating and writhing around crying and trying to hug myself better and fighting the urge with all that I can to severely hurt myself – and the next second I am staring silently into space, numb – nothing. And this cycles. It is terrifying, exhausting and I wouldn’t wish this kind of intense pain on anyone. Ever.
But – how the fuck do I explain to anyone that something so minor has caused what feels like an outright emergency for me. Like my fight or flight response has been maximised to its fullest and there are only extremes left. That I can’t sleep it off or calm down. It is excruciating pain, or nothingness. No in between. Like I said, I would never wish this on anyone – but I do wish that people could understand how intense these breakdowns are, that they could know just how bad it is. I’m not exaggerating when I say I am terrified, that I don’t feel safe alone, that I can’t breathe, that it feels like it is never going to end. These feelings are real. Even if I know that they are a symptom of mental illness, they are real. So what now?
Being left on my own in these moments feels like I’m completely abandoned. Completely alone and always will be. And, as awful and unfair and crazy as it sounds, it wouldn’t matter who else was there if it’s not my safe person or someone that really genuinely understands, and I’ve only ever spoken to a couple. I don’t even know how to explain it. But I know it is real, for me, and I don’t know how to end it when it happens. The best way out of it I can find is distracting myself, but that isn’t even imaginable until I seem to have ruined all the relationships in my life begging someone to help me. Then after I break myself even more by convincing myself that everyone hates me and is sick of me because they can’t help me out of it, I might be able to distract myself by staring at Netflix and blinking tears, or finding some other mundane thing to distract my brain for long enough to slow the whole process down.
It is exhausting. I just want my assessment and I want to know what is going on so that I can prevent it and know how to treat it. I desperately need this psychiatrist appointment to come through. I know my letter will get here soon but this getting out of control and I’m hurting so often. It doesn’t matter how incredible things are in my life. Illness hits hard and tries to ruin it all for me. I’m terrified one of these days I’m going to come out the other side with nothing and no one left.