2016, a postscript

2016, for me, was in many ways both the best and worst year of my life so far.  The highs were incredible; the lows, excruciating.  I’m trying to approach 2017 as a totally fresh start despite the fact that it’s not.  Every day, week, month, and year is a continuation of the last one–and I know just enough to understand that the trials of the recent past can help me create a better future.

Obviously the worst thing to happen to me in 2016 (and to many of my nearest and dearest) was the sudden and unexpected loss of my grandmother on June 4th.  Most of us aren’t lucky enough to have living grandparents well into our adult years, and a lot of people have reminded me of that.  However, the other side of that coin is that those of us who do have our grandparents for so long end up knowing their grandparents really well.  My Meema was my best friend, and nothing could have prepared me for suddenly not having her love and support.

After Meem was gone, my anxiety and depression spun out of control.  I’ve stayed on the same medication my psychiatrist back in Georgia put me on throughout all of this, despite the fact that I don’t feel like it’s doing anything anymore.  I could be wrong, so I’m not going to quit taking it, because I wouldn’t be able to handle anything more than I’m dealing with now.  Somehow, despite everything going on in my life and inside my head, I’ve managed to work my way up to an actual career-type position, even if it’s not in my college degree field.  Things at work have been excessively stressful for the last couple of months, and there are a lot of things going on there now that make me believe it’s probably not going to get better anytime soon.

Our family doctor here had me take the Beck Anxiety Inventory twice in a three-week period.  After the second inventory, she was basically like “you, psychiatrist, now“, but there just hasn’t been the time.  I’m hoping that once things settle down some at work, I can get a schedule far enough in advance–or permission to take a particular day off–so I can finally meet with a psychiatrist.

I don’t do resolutions, but my number one goal for 2017 is to make some progress with my mental health.  There were a lot of dark days in 2016, days I didn’t think I’d survive.  I don’t want to spend so much of 2017 buried in that darkness.  The first step to achieving that goal is to actually utilize the resources being offered to me, and I’m prepared to do whatever I have to do in order to make that happen.  In the meantime, I’ve just got to do my best to keep my head up and my feet moving.  If the second half of 2016 taught me anything, it’s that perseverance gets shit done.  I come from a long line of tough, amazing, ass-kicking women, and I’m not ready to give up.  2016 tried its hardest to break me, but it couldn’t do it.  I can’t let 2017 finish the job.


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