I’d Rather Drown Than Ask For Help
I’ve got a lot happening right now. My life is full and while I am grateful to be clean and present in my own life, I am totally overwhelmed. I try really hard to stay in today, but I just can’t help my mind spinning into all of the things that must get done in the coming months. When that mind-spinning happens, I shut down and find it difficult to do anything. Instead, I sit and wallow in all the things I’m not doing; that I can’t bring myself to do, because I’m overwhelmed. Then I panic and retreat further into myself. It’s a vicious cycle I’ve been stuck in for a couple weeks now.
My friendships are suffering because I can’t bring myself to reach out and ask for help. I don’t know what to say. I convince myself that I am supposed to be the serene, poster-girl for calm, but I’m not. I tell myself that my fears and daily struggles aren’t BIG enough to trouble the people in my life with; that I should be able to use my tools and work through this alone. Even seeing in typed here in black and white, I know it’s ridiculous.. I’m telling myself I don’t know what to do, what to say, or even where to begin, but that’s a lie. I do know where to start. It’s the one thing that has kept my recovery going since day one; reaching out with honesty.
I’m afraid to show anyone that I don’t have it together as well as I think I do.
I’m hiding in groups of people because I am overwhelmed with tasks and plans for the future. I’m afraid that you will think I’m weak. I’ve decided that is an unacceptable label for who I am today. I forget that peace I feel when I show my vulnerable side and admit that life terrifies me sometimes. I am consumed by fear, the same fear that kept me using drugs, except today I feel every ounce of it because I’m not using.
I know I can’t get everything done that I want to get done today, so my solution is doing nothing. It’s not working for me. I’m only falling more and more into silent panic. I’m hearing my own voice in my head saying all of the things I’ve said to others in the same circumstance, but finding it hard to take my own suggestions. I don’t want to live in this anymore, and no one can help me until I ask.
So, I am putting “ask for help and reach out” on the top of my to-do list for today, and every day after until I stop drowning.
Rachel has been in recovery since October 29, 2010, and she’s not afraid to speak out about it. She lives in Michigan with her husband and two daughters.