2009 was the toughest year of my life … until 2015. It was the year I had my 4th & 5th IVF’s and my 7th miscarriage. In November of that year, I also had to put my beloved Penelope down. She was a rescue, off an invaded Zim farm and she’d been my baby for only 6 years before we had to make the heart wrenching decision in the midst of recovering from my miscarriage. At the time I remember feeling completely broken and hopeless but the year ended on a high with the totally miraculous and unexpected placement of Ava and that change brought me back from the brink of total collapse.
I thought I’d be living happily ever after, I got my dream and was living my dream life. But that’s just naive isn’t it?
This year has pushed me to the edge of breaking. And with no end in sight, I feel myself tipping off the edge of a cliff and spiraling downwards.
It started on the 3rd of January with the ground floor of our house flooding and it has not let up, I have felt myself being crushed in the vice of insurmountable pressure and in the last few weeks I’ve begun to spiral completely out of control. And I hate it.
In the last two months, the shit that we have gone through is laughable. It was funny initially. Each knock we took, we’d laugh and say how much more can possibly go wrong? But its not funny anymore. I’m literally gripping the remnants of my sanity with white knuckles.
Making the decision to keep Ava back has been far harder on me than I ever could have imagined. Add to that the cost of the specialist educational psychologist and her eye diagnosis and it’s cost a lot of money. In the between all of that, my cars battery died. Then a few days later the alternator packed up. If you know anything about cars, you’ll know, it ain’t cheap. Then Walter’s car got rear ended by a taxi…. R10 000 damage. Then the motor on his rear passenger window went and the window fell in… he drives a frikkin Renault…. it costs a small bloody fortune to repair… more than the taxi damage. Then last week a piece of metal slashed his tyre and the tyre needs to be replace… we don’t have the money so he’s currently driving on the spare and hoping that he doesn’t get another puncture or flat till we’ve had a chance to replace it.
On Wednesday last week, I went to Fourways Crossing at 1pm. I got remote jammed. Luckily I noticed that the car hadn’t locked and after walking around the car repeatedly pressing the remote, it locked and I headed into Pick ‘n Pay. Unaware that I was in fact being targeted, that some fuckers out there had already ear marked my car for stripping and were going to get it at all costs. When I returned to my car, 5 minutes later, it took nearly 10 minutes to get the car unlocked. I panicked. I didn’t know what to do but again after pressing the remote a thousand times the car opened I hopped in and drove away. What I didn’t notice at the time…. the fuckers, in front of car guards and a slew of construction workers had tried to rip the bonnet of my car open using a screw driver or crow bar.. My bonnet is ripped to shreds and the side panel destroyed. R12 000 damage. At the assessment centre on Saturday they informed us that this is common practice on Fortuners and Hilux’s….. the alarm/immobilizer box, sits under the bonnet on the right hand side of the car, they crow bar it open, smash the protective brace, short the circuit, jump in the car and within seconds they drive away. Stripping the parts in a matter of hours. I was “lucky” I disturbed them and they didn’t get the job finished. I’m grateful that I still have my car, I’m grateful that they didn’t shoot me in their foiled attempt to steal my car.
The excess for my car is R3500. The excess for Walter’s car is R3500. Then Walters car got smashed my hail on top of everything else.
I’ve been under a huge amount of pressure work too. Like nothing I’ve experienced in the more than 10 years I’ve been with my employer.
3 in the last two weeks and they’re scary as all hell. It feels like I’m going to die when I’m in the grips of one and they come out of no where. There is no one thing that I can pin point that brings them on. The last one happened on Sunday, while I was lying on my bed preparing for a nap. Nothing specific sparked it. I just started to feel my heart begin to race, I sweat profusely and I can’t breathe. The more I can’t breathe, the more terrified I become the worse the symptoms get. I become paralyzed and sweaty and shaky and unable to breathe, unable to catch my breath.
I’ve come to the realization that my 10mg of Cipralex (which is an anti anxiety/ anti depressant combination) is no longer cutting it for me. I clearly need stronger meds and I definitely feel like I need a tranquilizer for the panic attacks. In fact I’d go so far to say…. I feel like I need a little mental/emotional vacation. I just want to check out for a while, I need a break from what, I’m not even sure. But I just know I’m spiraling and out of control and I can’t cope anymore.
I have never felt so depleted, so low, so broken, in my life and I’ve been through a lot of shit and held up in the past. But this time… this time…. I don’t know if I have what it takes to white knuckle my way through this.
And I certainly can’t take one more of life’s knocks. One more knock could be the very thing that pushes me under.
I am broken. I am finished.I am broke. I don’t know which way to turn. I don’t know how to fix this. I don’t know …. I don’t know anything anymore except that I can’t continue on this way. Drinking every night to sleep. Panicking and unable to breathe every day.
People talk about depression as the black dog…. For me…. it’s more like a giant python that is slowly crushing the life out of me.