For years it felt like I had been sleepwalking through my life. I felt as if I was living life, going through my daily motions one day at a time, all while living in an empty shell. Feeling and thinking so many things I didn't want to feel or think. Not being able to feel like I have control over anything in my life. To an outsider I had everything I needed to live a happy life, no reason to be depressed. What someone doesn't understand that has never suffered from a mental illness, is it is an illness. I had also been suffering from anxiety since the age of 11, although at that young age I had no idea what it was. Living life while suffering depression, sometimes is so hard to understand by the people who were blessed not to ever live with this illness. We live in our own hell that our minds have created and allows to happen and it feels like no matter how hard we try sometimes we can not escape it. How do you escape oneself? We try hard to hide and rid the thoughts...the feelings, sometimes it is too much to handle, too much to bear and you literally feel like you are suffocating. Suffocating in your own body and it is a living hell. You almost can't think straight because you can't bear the things you feel any longer. When you are brave enough to seek help, the problem is by that time you need immediate help, intensive around the clock help and you need it daily and you need this until you are strong enough to make it on your own...but not everyone gets that help. I know when I needed help, it took me awhile before admitting it. I was scared, I was ashamed and I felt all alone. When I hit my all time low, I was put on medicine right away, but that didn't target the problem, it numbed it and it didn't go away. I purchased self help books from Barnes and Noble that I hid in my bedroom. I researched things like crazy to figure out how I could fix myself. There were many factors in my life at the time my depression hit an all time low, that made everything spiral. I had people in my life that were treating me horrible, beating me down every second they could and this lasted for years. I worked nights, babysat during the day and with three young babies averaging 4 hours of sleep for years, this started to take a toll on me. My diet was horrible, made up of coffee, red bull, Luna bars, carbs, sugar and my children's left overs. The only down time I had was the ten minutes in my car on the way to work and on the way home from work. My energy level was zapped, even with the constant flow of caffeine through my body. Every day was a struggle, every day I tried to smile, everyday I tried to not let my babies know what was happening, everyday I wished I could sleep the day away and then finally I couldn't bare it anymore. I decided that the only way to make it all to stop, was to end it. It wasn't because I didn't have faith. It wasn't because I didn't have people that loved me, it was because I was sick.
For some reason on the day I decided it was going to happen, I started crying so hard and praying to God. Asking for his forgiveness for what I was about to do, asking him to watch over my babies and begging for his help. I knew once I left my house that day, it was all going to end. I had a plan in place and I was ready. I know you must be reading this and either thinking, how the hell does a person end up thinking this way or you are completely understanding everything I am saying. For those of you that can't even comprehend this, know how blessed you are! For some reason God heard me and said "not today Katie, it's not your time". One by one my children ran into my room and started hugging me, begging me not to go to work and I lost it even more. One of them ran to get my husband who had just got home from work and he was in shock to find me such a mess. I finally told him what I had planned, he then had me call my doctor and then my mother. They took me to the hospital, I was interviewed for a couple hours and admitted for almost a week. That moment saved my life and I was forever grateful. What followed that moment was many many years of what felt was like sleepwalking through my life. I left the hospital so drugged I could barely function and I no longer felt anything anymore. No sadness, no anger, no happiness...nothing at all. I lived this way for 6 years. This was not what I wanted either, but it was better then the alternative and I just kept taking the medicines and attending my sessions. My psychologist would ask me how I was and then write me a new script, I spent less then ten minutes in her office every visit. I saw a counselor with my husband, which helped me and helped him understand more of what I was going through and that helped us. Life was better, but it wasn't how I wanted to spend my life. What do you do at this point? I was doing everything I knew I needed to do to keep living, but I wasn't living.
I ended up gaining a lot of the weight due to the medicines and all the sugar I indulged because it gave me the only high I could seem to experience naturally. I knew I wanted to change my life, I wanted to feel human again, I wanted to be a better mother and a better wife, but I just didn't know how the heck I could make that happen. One night I was researching about food allergies for my son and kept coming across the term "clean eating". I was seeing a lot of links how eating clean can help improve your mood along with daily exercise, but I kept thinking it can't be that simple. This blog I came across, resonated with me. The more I read, the more I felt like this person in the blog could understand some of the things I felt and went through, so I contacted her. She was a Beachbody coach, I had no clue what that was. She said she could help me find a workout program, teach me what clean eating was all about, incorporate Shakeology into my diet, support me, motivate me, hopefully inspire me and put me in a group with other women who needed the daily accountability. I discussed the investment with my husband and being the good loving man he is, he said "go for it". I had spent so much of our money always trying to find the next thing that could help me. Little did I know at the time, that this decision I made then, would change my life. These were finally the tools I needed every day to make the changes I was so badly craving.
The more I ate clean, exercised on a daily basis and participated in these challenge groups, the more my life started to improve. I wasn't quickly losing weight or inches, but it was coming off. It was the changes internally that kept me going, I was starting to feel things I hadn't felt in a long time. After 7 months, I spoke with my Doctor and he decided it was time to start getting me off one of the three medicines I was on. The three weeks of getting off this one medicine, was pure hell. The withdrawal was absolutely horrible and I could barely function. I had brain zaps constantly, it felt like I was being electrocuted. I was having extreme highs and lows. I was a mess. Thank god I had my husband and mother helping me get through those weeks because it was scary. Then after three weeks, I started to feel better...a lot better. Then five months later it was time to get off a second medicine and this time it was not as bad. The side effects of the withdrawal didn't affect me as much and after two weeks, I felt better. Then three months after that I went to the lowest dose of my current medicine, which was 20MG and now down to 5MG. I feel human again and I feel so alive!
Here is the thing, Beachbody didn't change my life, I did that with the help of Beachbody. When I became a coach, it really impacted my life in ways I never thought were possible. As part of my job it is required of me to workout daily, eat healthy, drink Shakeology, read personal development and I am being surrounded by amazing positive people and meeting people that I needed in my life. These were the tools I was lacking in my life and who would have ever thought becoming a Beachbody coach would have transformed not only physically, but mentally (which was more important). I now have the honor of helping others get healthier and happier. Having a job like this is pretty priceless at times. I truly believe that eating healthy, exercising daily, surrounding yourself with positive people and reading or listening to daily personal development has helped me change my life.
I am now making it my mission to help others change their life. I want others to know this is possible. I want others to know you don't have to end your life to get out of your own hell. I know what feels like to want to give up, to be so tired of fighting yourself, to be ashamed of yourself, to feel like you want it all to end right this very second and feeling like the only way to end this pain, is to your end your life. I know what it's like to be so drugged, you can't function and I am proof you CAN make your life better. You can break free from this hell, from yourself and you don't have to go at this alone.
My wish is that I can reach many people. I pray for hope for all those who are living in their own hell. I pray that you can find this and I can give you a little glimpse of hope. Life can be better, you can break free. It's not going to be easy, but I promise you it will be worth the struggle. I wish I could give you a glimpse into the transformation I have had inside my mind and soul...that way you would truly know there is still hope. Hang in there, don't give up, when it gets so bad you have to end it-PLEASE PICK UP THE PHONE and call the first person that comes to mind. DO NOT BE ASHAMED!!!! If you can do this it shows how strong you really are and not weak. I truly believe when it is our time God will let us know.