I fell completely apart last week. At that moment, I knew I had to reach out for professional help. Everything became too much. I was literally drowning in a sea of anger, fear and negativity. Instead of distancing myself, I called my fabulous psychiatrist, Dr. Silbiger. Isn’t her last name fun?
I’ve always been a cheerleader for mental and emotional health. I believe therapy can help. Of course, finding the right therapist can take time. Once you find one, you never want to let them go. Though Dr. Silbiger is a psychiatrist, her style is much like a therapist. Her office has an immediate calming effect on me. She’s not staring at her laptop or avoiding all eye contact. She is right there in the moment with me, listening and being objective, along with medical knowledge. I have been with her going on four years.
When I walked into her office last Wednesday, I was pale, drawn and in the midst of a complete breakdown. I let myself be vulnerable. I let all those feelings come to the surface and cried A LOT. Heck, it was more like sobbing, that true ugly crying.
The stress of life after cancer is so immense and heavy, that it’s impossible to carry the load alone. I had given up when I walked through her door. I was going to get on Medicaid and file for disability because I had just thrown in the towel. I was done.
Well, Dr. Silbiger wasn’t going to let me give up. Period. She reminded me that I am more resilient and resourceful than I think I am. She said I was a fighter long before cancer. It’s NOT my nature to give up. She told me I have every right to scream, kick things and cry. I have been through the wringer. It’s OKAY.
By the end of the session, I felt 75% better. She knows times are financially tough and not charging me for the sessions right now. She said it’s important that I know I have a safe place to go when things get too overwhelming and scary. She will be that professional and safe support system.
Fast forward to this past weekend…
I have been beyond blessed with a few miracles. My immediate financial stress has been taken care of and paid in full by a ministry full of angels in my church. I’m beyond overjoyed and relieved. I let go of that pride and continue to remain genuine and a woman of faith. I’m so blessed by the generosity of friends and fellow warriors, too. The outreach of all kinds of support wrapped me with much needed hugs and shoulders to lean on.
I have never let go of my faith. It pushed me to ask for professional, spiritual and financial help. I literally feel the weight lifted off my shoulders this morning. Yes, I still need a job and health insurance, but my confidence is back. My feistiness, humor and will to live is back.
Don’t be afraid or too proud to ask for help, and don’t let anyone dull your sparkle!!!!
“Nothing can dim the light which shines from within.”
― Maya Angelou
- Suicide Prevention Lifeline
- Suicide & Crisis Hotline
- Help Finding a Therapist
- National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)
- Panic Disorder Information Hotline