jny published on
3 min, 549 words

Categories: Mental Health

Life is complex. I’ll definitely admit that. There are a million different ways to explain and define the causes and effects of a situation and it’s seldom that one can say with one hundred percent certainty, especially when there is human behavior involved. But I kind of have a theory about how my current progress, and treatment, is going in terms of health and psychology.

I’ve dealt with depression since I was a young teen, which eventually helped usher in anxiety (mostly social) towards the end of my college career. I was always “socially awkward” but never really had physical symptoms until those last few semesters. Even weirder physical symptoms started to develop as my college career came to a close, the most notable of which was Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. It nearly prevented me from graduating.

After graduating, things continued to get worse to the point that I was barely even present at any time. To others it always seemed as though I was daydreaming and I myself felt the same way, only my daydream was blank and I couldn’t snap out of it. This, in layman’s terms, is an example of what’s known is psychology as dissociation.

Anyway, I was almost always either sleeping from utter exhaustion or Dissociation made everything difficult, including therapy. My memory was bad -even of the past week, I couldn’t form coherent sentences or thoughts, and nearly every week I would get incredibly sleepy in the middle of the session. Despite that difficulty, I slowly made progress, went to see other doctors, and tried to find whatever I could that helped.


Fast forward to today, a year or so later and things are better…..kinda. I’m dissociated way less. I can think clearly and my memory is better, though not fully returned. My “sleepiness” factor is diminished, albeit dependent on the current level of stress. But here’s the thing: my anxiety has skyrocketed.

I still view it as progress though. I view it as digging myself out the same way I came; retracing my steps; rewinding the tape. Dissociation is a body’s way of escape when it feels trapped. It’s numbing, or at least the form that I experienced is. The anxiety or job pressure or whatever was too intense so it just went “Nope” and checked itself out. But when the numbness wears off, the problem is still there. It never went away, it was just covered up.

Honestly, being numb is more comfortable; I’ll admit there’s time when I’ve wished to dissociate to escape feeling a situation, and even wondered if my prior dissociated zombie state was better than the one I’m in now. But at the same time, I’m able to recognize that, health wise, me being able to feel the anxiety, to think the anxious thoughts is way better. It means I’ve worked/am working through the junk from this last year and am uncovering the anxiety that was before that. It means that my body is freaking out, yes, but it’s at least willing to take a step outside. It means that I have momentum, and in the right direction this time.


On the other hand, I could be completely wrong and the dissociation and anxiety could be treatable simultaneously, in which case I’m fucked.