I promised to share the story of my life with Bip (bipolar), Pots (Post Traumatic Stress) and the twins, Ann (anxiety) and Nick (panic). Monday was the beginning and this is the next installment.
When someone thinks about a hatching dragon, what do they picture in their mind? Something cute that you can hold in your hand?People were saying things like, “Oh how wonderful! You are becoming a woman.” “I know its scary, but it’s so wonderful” “It’s just the hormones readjusting, but it will pass.” They talked about it like the cute dragon in this picture. Something somewhat mysterious, very wonderful and filled with joy. They laughed about mood swings, PMS and the discovering of boys. It was all wrong. I didn’t feel anything like what they were talking about. It was quickly becoming a terrifying and dark time.
When I first felt the dragon hatching I was probably about 13. The egg had been incubating quite a while and the hormonal surge of starting my period is what began the hatching process. With each crack in the egg wisps of darkness seeped out slowly filling my mind with sadness and fear. I could feel overwhelming waves of emotion surge through my head as this hatchling thrashed about in an effort to escape the confines of its shell. Terror, joy, disinterest, fascination, sadness and anger flashed like lightning through my brain. I cried. A lot. I withdrew. A lot. I got frustrated. All the time. This is when my mother started to think that maybe, just maybe, it was more than just puberty I was struggling with. Then it happened. Bip was free of her egg and the darkness began to swirl threatening to smother me.My journey through the black hole of depression and mental illness had now began.
These posts will probably be short because it is emotionally draining to walk through these dark memories. Why do it if it is painful? Because there are so many people walking in that same darkness that I walked through. I want them to know that there is a way out. Maybe by sharing my memories and experiences I can help others find their way back into the light. You might want to know why I have chosen a dragon to represent my illness. Historically dragons are a symbol of the power over life and death. Of course the fact that I like dragons is just a bonus. Having had a “pet” dragon all my life has made it interesting to say the least.