Struggling for a while now

This is my first time posting in here, I guess I just want to get everything out there. In August, I moved from Wisconsin to Arizona to start college. I got a dream spot studying musical theatre in one of my favorite places in the world. My class is pretty small, 16 freshmen, and we have all gotten really close like a family. In October, everything started to be too much and I started to feel like I couldn’t do everything I needed to, and if I wasn’t cut out for college I didn’t have a point in living. It has been nearly impossible to find a therapist and my university doesn’t have enough resources available for all of the students that need them so I couldn’t see one as often as I needed. I checked myself into a mental hospital for the first time. I was diagnosed with anxiety and depression when I was 10 and have been on various medications since. I was under the impression that I’d go to the hospital and get my medicine figured out, speak to a therapist and get set up somewhere long term. They immediately took me off of the medication I had been taking and put me on lithium and abilify. The whole experience was honestly more traumatic than helpful and I remember crying myself to sleep and praying that I could get out as soon as possible. All we did was group therapy and random circles where we talked about our problems. I thought at least some of the stuff I learned was helpful, about taking my mental health into my own hands, but mostly I just wanted them to see me be healthy so I could leave. They set me up with a psychiatrist and therapist locally and I was on my way. The psychiatrist upped my lithium dosage and I began to feel nothing like myself, foggy-headed and forgetful all the time. I expressed this to her and she didn’t seem to care, so I stopped taking them on my own. Then at my next appointment she scolded me and put me on 1/3 the dose of the medication I was taking before I was hospitalized. (Logic wasn’t her strong suit I guess). I continued to struggle, getting to appointments without a car. I went home for winter break and realized I forgot my medication in my dorm. We called my psychiatrist a few times to ask for another prescription we could pick up for the month away. No response. So I was off medication until January, another detriment to my health. I decided I was done with that psychiatrist and health agency as they were inconvenient and unhelpful. What followed was weeks of some of the darkest and lowest things I’ve ever felt. I was suicidal every single day, crying on the phone to my mom, calling crisis lines, nothing changing. Eventually I was able to get an appointment on campus with a psychiatrist, hoping to get stabilized before I looked for a more permanent solution. If you haven’t been through a med change or pharmaceuticals in general, it’s a long, often irritating process. My mother flew out after an especially awful breakdown where I expressed how I had no choice but to die because things were never going to get better and kept getting worse. We vowed to take a week to figure everything out and make a plan. So we went to countless meetings with mental health professionals and university staff. We decided I would take a reduced credit load, enroll in an intensive outpatient program, and start seeing a therapist close by weekly. You have to understand that being in a deep depression like this, I have no motivation but am just going through the motions trying to make something work. After my mom left I started thinking about just how much was on my plate now and how much more responsible I had to be. I realized there was no way I was going to continue being in school if I was really going to get my mental health back to where it was before. We talked with the director of my program and he gave me the opportunity to take a medical leave, and rejoin next years freshman class in the spring semester where I left off. This was one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever made. I decided it would be the best for me in the long run. I leave Sunday and each day I just get sadder and sadder about it. I want to be here in Arizona, doing what I love, but I just can’t and it breaks my heart. I don’t want to leave all my friends, even though I’ll be back in the fall. I feel like I’m not a part of anything anymore and that I’m just a failure. The cold winter back home is gonna kill me, not to mention that my only couple friends there are in school. I don’t know what I’m gonna do but I just keep praying things will get better no matter how much they look like they won’t. Here’s to sunnier days ahead.

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