August 26, 2017

The Current War Within

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I have to believe that there's something more to this. I can't wrap my mind around the idea that there is this condition, like a disease, that must be addressed with something that's so passive, so simple, so...effortless.

I really thought that I was on to something this last week. I'd arrived at a desperate place once again, so easily serenaded by the sweet sounding words, "A pill is all you need to take." Because the deepest part of me wants to believe it's true.

"YES!" my inside screams. For a few hours, days, weeks even, I'm soaring above it all, wrapped up in the romance of such a simple fix.

Here I am, doing this, and yet I'm finding that I can't. I just can't do it. I can't take the risk. After how sweet it sounded. Knowing how easy it could be. The risk is driving me more mad than the anxiety itself.

Perhaps a drug can make it somewhat better, but a drug is still a drug. And a drug doesn't address how it got there, why it stayed, why it won't go away.

I have to remember that my anxiety is so much deeper, so much more complex than what genetics, science, and psychiatry all want me to believe. I'm lonely, isolated, imprisoned by my work, trapped in my guilt, longing for and needing so much more. And beneath it all are the lies I believe. About God. About life. About myself.

The story I'm hearing over and over. I'm not loved. I'm not known. God isn't there for me. God won't protect me or my family. And at the end of it all, maybe...maybe...He won't be there...The doubt.

Who wouldn't be anxious?

And on top of the issues themselves is a layer of thinking, of believing, of allowing my work to imprison me, of resentment and bitterness, of refusing to believe just how much God loves me, of letting my mothering say absolutely everything about me and not trusting where God has me in this moment.

Byproducts, really, of being isolated. The lies.

But this means that there is a solution. A hard one, but maybe a better, more permanent one. I will always be anxious if I'm doubting God. If I fear death and the safety of my family, the thoughts will overtake me. If I don't trust where God has me in this moment, the guilt will overwhelm me.

God, please have mercy on me.

I must do the simple work of caring for myself with food and water and activity. And I must do the difficult work of removing the bitterness, confessing, letting go, engaging harder in a community and putting energy towards finding the one for me.

I like to think that maybe I had to go through this struggle to actually step up and start fighting. That this blip mattered.

What I hate most about medication is feeling like there's something wrong with me. There is something wrong, but there's a difference to me between a pill-sized missing link in my brain and the sin and lies I've been steeped in. There's no pill big enough to overcome the bitterness that's taken hold, the lies that have become rooted, and the hopelessness that's ensued.

And I can't just sit here and take a stupid pill because the work of marriage and motherhood and believing is "too hard." Especially when it's not just about me, but this baby too.