I wrote this last year, a few days before the anniversary of my car accident. It has now been four years and the struggle remains. The days seem to be getting a tiny bit easier, but it never really goes away. I'm still hyper alert for any triggers, as are my boyfriend and family. Every day is a struggle.
I really and truly despise discussing my “mental illnesses”. They’re not fun to have, easy to treat, and I will be stuck with them for life. The most I can do is hope to learn how to manage them so that my bad days aren’t as dark, and my good days are a little brighter. I wasn’t born with depression or anxiety. I didn’t go to war or see violence or was abused to obtain my PTSD.
I was hit by a truck. He ran the red light in his work vehicle and I was lucky enough to have sustained back and neck injuries, and a completely shattered right wrist, but I was alive. At least that’s what everyone told me. What they didn’t see and what they didn’t understand was the ptsd, depression, and anxiety that I have as a result. The three year anniversary of this accident is on January 31. Every year January and part of February are incredibly hard for me to deal with. I was driving a truck, so it could have been much worse.
So three years later, I’m still recovering. I still see a counselor on and off. I still hate driving. Being alone terrifies me. I was alone when the accident occurred so now I have these periods of intense, and irrational, fears that I will be hit again. How do explain that when you’re in a building and suddenly you have a panic attack and a flash back and you think you’ll be hit again, every one finds that hard to understand.
I never saw any of this coming. The lack of control is the worst. There aren’t any quick fixes, pills haven’t worked, counseling is a band aid fix, and my thoughts of suicide and self harm haven’t gone farther than that. I scratch myself in my sleep and when I feel out of control, I chop off my hair, bite my nails until they bleed, or buy random things. I just need to be in control of something in my life. Some days, I can’t get out of bed. Others I cry and don’t want to talk to anyone.
I’ve come a long way, I know that. But really? It’s hard to care sometimes. I have this life long struggle because some ass in a company truck tried getting one more commission. In some ways it’s good. I realize now how strong I truly am, and even on my bad days I’m proud of my progress.
My family has been with my every step of the way too. They’ve cried with me, taken me to countless doctors, and plied me with teddy bears, songs, and candy to calm me down. I have an amazing boyfriend who kisses away my tears, screens movies for car accidents or noises that will scare me, and buys me starburst ( my pill of choice) to help me.
But what I have lost are friends who gave up on me. People who have called and texted me, tried to hang out or even just see me, that I never answered. I couldn’t. How could they love someone or even just want to be around someone so shattered? Why would they want to be around someone who randomly cries, who flakes on plans because I don’t want to get in a car, or won’t eat because I’m too depressed. I couldn’t accept my illnesses so why should they? What was terrible, was seeing people and kind of telling them that I wasn’t ok, and them not understanding. I have been told a million times to “get over it” and “it is just a car accident”. But it wasn’t, and it’s not. It’s so much more than that. I couldn’t accept myself, or everything that I lost. I lost my sense of security, my sense of a future, and a life. I lost some of the use of my wrist. I didn’t drive a car for around two years.
So for now, I take one day at a time. I have bad days. I have good days. I’m trying to pick up the pieces and my family and boyfriend hold the ones that I’ve put back together. I still have a long journey, but I’m ready for it.
That was long and yet so short.
Until next time,