I feel incredibly nervous as I type these words as I haven’t manifested myself in over four months. I went on a digital detox (in the true sense of the word, as I haven’t logged in my social media until very recently). I missed blogging terribly but I had to log off for health issues, both physical and mental ones.
Back in March, I started feeling signs of fatigue (muscle cramps, sleepiness, dizziness, trouble getting out of bed) so I went to my GP and after some blood tests which showed signs of inflammations. Since we could not pinpoint the source of it, I was required to take more tests and exams during the coming months.
Unbeknownst to me at that time, I also had all the signs of an impending depression and it hit me during the Summer. It manifested itself in such an insidious manner that I did not see it coming, to me it felt like it happened almost overnight, but retrospectively, it was a long time coming.
I can’t get into too many details but I did have to be treated for it and I still am to this day. I’m not on medication but I have had to make major life changes. I did not recognize myself, I felt as if every little bit of joy had been sucked out of me, I’d have an incongruous emotional outburst, crying at the slight contrariety and feel out of place everywhere. Then I felt as if I had morphed into a ghost: numb, shallow, overlooking things, plainly incapable of feeling or doing anything. My mind was polluted with dark thoughts and an unshakeable feeling of isolation and loneliness. I lost all self-esteem, courage, and desire to do anything with my life. All goals, dreams, and aspirations vanished. Even when I was staring at my computer screen, my brain was not able to make any sense of it. My communications skills dropped, I could not conduct a proper conversation with anyone, anymore. I could not muster the strength to do anything, I felt shallow and empty on the inside. For the past couple of months, I did not look at my Instagram, Twitter, Facebook nor checked any notifications and I barely went through emails. It feels crazy, especially when I used to be on social media on daily basis and I would feel uneasy and annoyed anytime I could not get any Wi-Fi, but this drastic detox gave me the opportunity to tackle my inner emotional turmoil while dealing with an inflammation.
I feel better but I’m still being monitored as things are not fully back to normal. Recently, I also got my wisdom tooth removed, so health has been the priority. I am back to blogging, but taking baby steps. I’ll be sharing more as I feel less fragile. Right now, I am doing okay and better than a few months ago which feels already like a world of difference to me.
Taking it step by step, day by day.
I’ve gone through a massive cleaning (from my beauty stash to my entire living space) because the anxiety I developed was overwhelming. I’ve also lost some weight since I was according to the doctor (and the BMI) a bit “overweight” (- not that I consider myself this way, but in May I was the heaviest I had ever been). The pounds piled on quickly this year and contributed to my low energy levels. I’ve taken new directions, both on personal and professional levels. My head feels massively clearer and I am determined to be the best version that I can be – but in a sustainable way.
I am looking for sustainable, deep, meaningful connections. Life is not a popularity contest and you can’t please everyone. I have had this deeply rooted fear of rejection and I’m learning to slowly get rid of it. I am done with toxic relationships. I am learning to love myself and allow to be loved in return. I’m taking care both of my mental and physical state and I’m learning to shake off this FOMO which caused me a huge disservice this year. I’m learning to go at my own pace and find my balance. I’m done making promises I can’t keep because I end up piling on too many projects, thus putting my health at risk. I felt constant guilt this year because I could not keep up with the tasks I had given myself. I am learning to say “no” more often but most importantly share how I really feel. I’m digging through the roots of my unhappiness instead of running away from my problems or shrugging them off, I’m now learning to face them and tackle them.
Everyone is going through tough times, so this post is not a pity party. To me, this experience has been the catalyst to shed a troubled layer of my being. Ultimately, I’m a firm believer that depression does not make you weaker, but stronger. I was unsure about sharing so much in a post, but I used to hide my feelings so often, pretending that all was well when things were slowly getting out of control. The result of this habit got the best of me and brought me into a lonely and vulnerable state.
I have a huge stash of emails but I’ll take them at my own pace, I’m terribly sorry I could not be in a state to reply to any of you. I have probably let people down, I have certainly let myself down but this digital break was the only solution I could find to cope with my problems and recenter. As overconnected this world is, it can also feel extremely detached and lonely which made me reconsider everything. I want to continue working and share my passion for sustainability and green beauty but I’ll proceed differently. It almost feels like a fresh start and I hope you’ll enjoy the new content.
I am looking forward to (re)connecting with you.
All my love,
Oh Liz, thank you so much for sharing. Today I went on Bloglovin’ for the first time in over a year and your post was the first one I saw. And it made me sad, but gave me hope. I’m so sorry you have been battling health issues, both physical and mental, but I am also happy that you were able to take the time you needed to face your problems. That is so terribly difficult to do, so others can be inspired by your courage and strength in a time of despair. I’ve been going through a similar situation since I disappeared from blogging and am just now getting to a point where I feel I may be able to reconnect as well. I’m not quite there, but hopefully soon along with a revamp of my own blog (and possibly a name change). You can never let us down as long as you are taking care of yourself first. Out of the darkness comes light and you were, and always will be, a phoenix in my eyes 🙂
Sweet Rebecca, if you knew how much your kind words mean to me. I’m so sorry to hear that you’ve been going through tough times but I’m excited for you to make your comeback, and I’ll be cheering and rooting for you. You’re awesome and you deserve all the best. Sending you the biggest hug!! xoxo
Thank you for sharing your story Liz and I’m so happy you’re doing better. You are courageous for taking the time to heal. I can very much relate to your post. Much love, strength and giant hugs to you sister.
Sweetest Taylor, thank you so much…your words brought the biggest smile on my face. You’re a beauty inside and out. Many hugs and love right back at you sister <3.
Dear Liz, So happy to see you back on the blogging sphere. And thanks for sharing such a personnal story. Take care of yourself. I was really thinnking about you and waiting for the moment of your “return”.
I’m glad you made the first step. Take it easy and take it slow. What matters is you and your health only.x
Dearest Audrey, thank you, thank you, thank you. I missed our little talks on twitter and I hope that you’re happy and well. Lots of love your way and speak soon 🙂 xxx
Oh sweetheart. Welcoming you back to this void of vanity feels like a wrong “geste”. So let me just assure you that even in the most troubled waters there are havens of quiet and calm and happiness. As my psychologist friend (who has seen me shatter into a bipolar fireworks after my father’s death) jokes, there are no “sane” people, only those passed undiagnosed, and in a way, she’s right. Life is so complex, it’s not possible to live it without any scars, on skin or soul. What matters is to acknowledge and treat the wounds and then fill our hearts with joy and hope at the end of each day. And there is power and strength in that.
Much love and all the hugs, Nath
Nath, you’re a treasure, a friend, in the noblest sense of the word. Your comment moved me beyond words and I cannot imagine the pain and suffering you have had to go through… Again, your comment speaks truth. Ever since I’ve met you, you always found the words to encourage, reassure and induce a good heartfelt laugh when needed. Thank you, thank you, thank you. You deserve all the happiness in the world. I love you lots and even though I might not look like the most reliable person right now (I reply to every message at the pace of a snail) I hope you know that you can count on me, I’ve got your back. Liz xoxo
Dear Liz, I’m so happy you’re back to blogging. I completely understand your motifs to take a step back, sometimes I myself feel that world just spinning to fast around me that a break would be necessary. The main thing is to follow your “gut feelings” the instincts, and do what feels right for you. I wish you all the strength and patience for this journey.
Dear Anna, thank you so much for your kind and comforting words. Hope you’re well and I completely agree, it is key to listen to our instinct. xoxo Liz
I know this is an old post but was linked on your 2018 favourites.
I really hope you were tested for hypothyroidism. It fits your symptoms very well. I am hypothyroid and also have ME which is why I try to make “clean” choices, which led me your blog.
Keep up the good work!
All the best for 2019 xx
Hi Trini, thank you for your comment. This is very interesting, I had my thyroid tested a couple for years and the results were negative, but I might do it again. Wishing you a happy and healthy 2019. xo Liz