In 2016, I was officially diagnosed with Depression and Anxiety along being told that I’m severely anemic. While the anemia is easily treatable with enough iron in my body, the depression and anxiety has been a lot harder to overcome.

I’ve been in therapy for almost the entire year. I have learned different relaxing techniques to calm down my anxiety. I have gotten my anxiety down to just rapid heart rate, instead of the whole not breathing thing. Proud of myself for using cognitive therapy skills to better cope with my anxiety.

The depression has been the worst one to deal with so far. I have been taking medication (paxil) almost religiously. It’s still been extremely hard to overcome. I’ve taken many mental health days off of work to cope with it. Thankfully, I have not missed anything major and my work is very accommodating of mental illness. The paxil makes me yawn nonstop and makes me seem so unprofessional. Even when on the medication, I have not been able to force myself to get out of bed. It’s been really tough. It was sometime last week when it finally hit me how depressed I really was. I was looking up how to kill myself with a paxil overdose. My wake up call.

It was during those desperate moments that I decided to make a sacred pact with myself and decided to get off the medication altogether and naturally treat depression. I have made a plan to force myself to do a plethora of things to take me to the end of 2016 and then ways to implement them in 2017. I plan on joining the gym, getting more sunshine, journaling/blogging, positive thinking, realizing constantly that I am doing something worthwhile with myself. I know that it will be a lot harder than I think it may be to overcome depression but I am going to do it. The medical side effects are almost worse than the actual depression. I can no longer participate in that. I will continue to go to therapy though and implementing various techniques to continue overcoming my anxiety & now depression.

I give myself at least until February 2017 to see if my natural ways help or not before going back on any type of medication. I understand that there is a time and need for it but for me, I’m done with it – at least for now.

Through therapy, I have finally come to realize why I’ve been more depressed now than I was previously. It is going to sound so selfish and it is but I’ve always been an overachiever. I’ve always relished in doing many things and relishing in my success. I didn’t have a choice then. I had to work 4 jobs to pay for college. My parents could not afford it and I wouldn’t have asked them to pay for my education. My parents gave up their entire lives so that I could have a better education and moved across oceans. I couldn’t break their hearts and tell them that I can’t get to higher education because I simply cannot afford it. I made it happen somehow.

Now, my life seems to have calmed down a bit and I’m starting out my career, I don’t have that high anxiety & stress environment. I think that’s what’s causing my to have these feelings of unworthiness. For some reason, I think if I’m not busy all the time, I’m wasting away not only my life but the lives of 2 other people who gave up everything so that I could have a better life. The only thing is that I have no idea what more I could be doing.

I cannot volunteer where I live because the potential for a conflict of interest is pretty high in most of the places where I would even want to be. I don’t think that going back to school to get a second doctorate will really help much except for increasing my already $200K student loan. I’m at a loss but thankfully, Pinterest has provided me with many ideas to look into to see if I can naturally beat depression.

No matter what, I think that there’s always hope because no matter how ugly it gets, once you remember the grace & mercy of the One above, it’s all worthwhile!