I am finally coming clean about why I decided to take a break from blogging about a year ago. While I did not expect to be away for this long, I felt it was very needed as I went through countless changes in my personal life. About a year ago, I had a situation that made me take a step away. The situation simply put involved a close family member trivializing my mental health and the experiences and emotions I wanted to share and tried to do so respectfully. But I guess you cannot make everyone happy or even try for them to understand from your point of view. I learned through this first experience of many, really over the years that how someone treats you has more to do with them than it has to do with you most of the time. I have and will continue to carry this sentiment with me because you’ll face people and experiences alike in this life. After this experience, my grandma, who I was close with, unfortunately fell ill around this time, having a stroke but still bouncing back what could’ve brought her down. During this time, I also learned I got accepted and started a Doctorate of Occupational Therapy program in Bismarck, North Dakota. Not soon after starting the program, my grandma had a massive stroke, losing her ability to form coherent sentences. Right around this time when my grandma was becoming more ill, I learned I could possibly have melanoma and had to have a few inches of skin removed from my shin, which was fairly painful and overwhelming when it came to waiting to hear back on the news. At this point in time, I learned there was only so many variables I could control in my life, and the only constant being how I decided to move forward. I decided to keep going, staying strong for myself, my family and friends, and most importantly my grandma at the time. As I was finishing my first semester of OT school, my grandma ended up having a third massive stroke in the beginning of August. I remember just trying to get through, staying strong and resilient for all those around me, I guess you could say in a sense I became rock solid, nothing was going to break me, I was going to be there for all those around me. Honestly, I really needed someone to say it was okay to be sad, okay to pause, and really okay to just grieve one of the most important figures in my life, my grandma.
But unfortunately I fell into the same cycle we all do of just doing whatever it was we were before, whether that be our job, schooling or the mundane tasks of life; never really processing all we’ve may have not experienced or expressed at that moment. I decided I was going to work full time and go to OT school full time, so I did just that, I started OT school and I was doing amazing, I had straight A’s and was learning what I was truly capable of. After a month, something did not felt right, I kept trying to run away from it until I was face to face with it, I had a massive dizziness episode in class and it really broke me and made me reassess what I was doing with my life, is this really my passion or am I just here since I thought this was my passion at a point in time? I really came to terms with what I thought I should be and who I really wanted to be. I decided to withdraw from OT school and come back to Boise. When I came back, I decided something needed change but I really did not know what yet. Then in November, I got offered a job at my alma mater, I thought this will give me the opportunity and time to hopefully go back to school and find what I am truly passionate about, no outward influences coming in. At first all seemed to be great, then in February of this year I started to have horrible dizzy spells, like I felt I was falling out of my chair at my desk at work and then blacking out at times when just walking. I also started to just feel overwhelmed at times and had no clue as to why. Right around the end of March is when the dizzy spells, bad migraines, blacking out and being overwhelmed went into a full gear. I was no longer in the driver seat, my body was, and I really had no control over what gear it decided to throw itself into, no matter how much I tried to redirect or just go with it.
I remember vividly blacking out and wondering what just happened near the end of March. I was embarrassed, and more specifically felt ostracized by an individual who totally disregarded me as a human and continued to do so, time and time again. Looking back this was not the first time, there were many signs that I should not look for support where I knew it would never be, leading me to be my own best support and lean on those who cared and supported me beyond the variables of my health, which I could not control. I then was referred by my primary doctor to a variety of doctors and countless tests were run, but all that came back was tests showing my balance was worsening but no answers as to why. It wasn’t until my mom noticed I was crossing my eyes during a balance test and the audiologist saying that was uncommon. At this point in time, I felt hopeless, you could even ask those close to me, they could see I was struggling. Instead of those close to me deciding to take step back they came closer to offer support, whether that be emotionally and mentally. Not having answers to your physical health can really take a toll on your mental and emotional health. Things started though to turn around when I met my boyfriend Zach at the beginning of May, and then in early June a neuro-optometrist told me I had Binocular Vision Dysfunction (BVD). When I heard it was not all in my head and that my eyes were the root for all my physical problems, I felt relief. I was told by my optometrist that all that had happened with my health was not my fault. Like any road that lies behind and in front of us, it can be short, long, bumpy, smooth, having twists and turns.
Luckily I finally know after years of feeling this way, now having less headaches and dizziness due to new speciality eye glasses, it really is not all in my head. After a year of stepping away because of the culminating changes of my life, I am happy to come clean on here to you as to why, and I hope you know it is okay to take a step back, seek out what you want in this life, and have hope knowing that no matter what or who tries to bring you down, you can always rise up stronger, more resilient and hopefully kinder to those around you; you truly have no clue of the silent battles people fight and do not speak up about. Do remember to use your voice, no matter how loud the noise may get, you got this and to come clean of all that may be holding you back from truly living your best life!