Welp, it has been one year since I started this blog. I’ve logged over 60 entries, writing almost every week for the past year. I’m not sure what to make of it all. A lot has happened. A lot has changed. I’ve gotten a lot off of my chest. I've worked through a lot of baggage. And I've received many responses from you, dear readers, that have given me hope.
When I started this blog, my diagnoses were depression, anxiety, and trichotillomania. A year later and these diagnoses have changed to bipolar II disorder, panic disorder (with agoraphobia), PTSD, and a possible dissociative disorder (with trichotillomania still hanging on).
When I started this blog, I didn’t know that I would spend two rounds of treatment in an outpatient psychiatric program within the year. I didn’t know about the pain I’d unearth going through EMDR therapy. And I had no way to anticipate the overwhelming support that I've received from you all. It boggles my mind, and it's hard to believe it actually happened.
I had no idea, when I nervously shared my very first blog entry, how much of an outpouring of love and support there would be. Every piece of myself that I was so scared to reveal was met by someone saying "me too". I would keep writing and more "me too's" would appear. And that's why I continue to write: because nobody experiences mental illness in a vacuum. Mental illness is full of shared experiences; so many of us experience the same or similar things, but we are too ashamed to share our stories. But, what we don't know is that our stories can save us. Sharing them creates an opening for connection, for the "me too's" that make us feel less alone.
Sharing my story on this blog saved me more than once. It allowed me to reach out when I was in the depths and cry for help. And, astonishingly, help came. You helped me, and I am forever grateful for that.
So, I want to end this entry by saying thank you. Thank you for reading this past year. Thank you for your support. Thank you for your feedback. It truly means the world to me. I'd also like to end by asking you: what would you like to see on this blog going forward? Are there topics you'd like me to explore? Questions you'd like me to answer? Leave your ideas in the comments or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you, dear readers, for everything. You have given me hope.