My migraines, depression, and anxiety are a warning
By: Marta (Spain)
It’s Tuesday night and I just saw a lovely conversation between a hero from this community and the founder, Jessica, on Instagram.
Carmen, the hero, encouraged all of us to experience the disruptions that happened to us from the point of view of the hero and not from that of the victim. Only in this way, she said, could we appreciate the gifts that such adversity was going to bring us.
Thanks to you Carmen, today I have gathered the strength to put on my cape and bring out the hero that I have inside.
I have been a perfect girl, an exemplary adolescent, an obedient daughter, a professional to emulate. I have a long term partner, a dream life, and family and friends who love and value me more than I ever dreamed of.
On the other hand, I also have migraines. I have had them since I was an adolescent, but the last three years I have suffered from it in a chronic and often refractory way (there is no medication to cure it).
Another part of me that many people do not know is the Marta with anxiety attacks, depression, and insomnia. This part has come up a few times in my life but recently has escalated to the point of collapsing all my abilities.
I have always strived to keep these 3 parts of me separate: the exemplary Marta, the Marta with the migraines and the unstable Marta, and now I realize that everything is related, and that only by seeing it like this will I be able to redirect my life.
I realize now because I know that this exemplary person is not who I really want to be, but who I have believed I should be to please people who did not even expect that from me. The pressure of playing this role for so many years has subjected me to such high pressure that my body for some time has begun to warn with unbearable pain that enough was enough.
But instead of listening to myself, I have continued to increase that pressure. Looking for the next best job, the next best destination, the next best result. I accepted that the migraine was my traveling companion and instead of listening to it I decided to ignore it while I continued on my way, carrying it as if it were a heavy backpack.
And what happens when you try to ignore something? It shows up in other places. At first it was stress, then apathy, then sadness,until it became anxiety attacks due to minor problems and sleepless nights without knowing how to fall asleep. So, what can we do now? How do we reconcile the wonderful Marta with this reality?
Well, oddly enough, for more than a year I have made it compatible, or at least tried. I have focused on my family, my work, and sports to be able to show myself that things were going well for me when I only felt deep down that I was going from bad to worse.
And it has been thanks to other heroes in the form of coaches, psychologists, doctors, complementary therapists, friends, and even angels (I love you, my Joselito), that I have finally woven my hero cape and put it on, to save the Marta I should have been from the beginning: the authentic Marta, the Marta who does what she FEELS and not what she HAS TO do.
I have not worn my hero cape for a long time, and as I am a new Marta in many ways, I still crawl, I stumble, and I have a lot to discover about myself. But I assure you that I sleep better than ever and that my headaches have improved considerably.
My psychologist told me that one day my pain and sleepless nights would become anecdotes from the past. I have to admit that I never believed you Ana. But today I believe you, because I believe in myself more than ever.