A Graduate School and Mental Health Story

Earlier this week, I suffered a grave mental break down. I had a paper due and I had not finished it. However, I had no desire to want to finish the paper. I cried and even curled up in a ball and at one point I was rocking back and forth. I honestly was so over whelmed that I wanted to drop out. I cried for most of the night and barely submitted my paper. I know someone reading this is thinking how could she turn in her paper when she seemed so scattered? Well it was not easy. First, I thought of all the people I could call and decided not to call anyone because I knew that many people in my circle would not understand how I felt or they would tell me “I got this” when in reality, I did not. Secondly, I called a depression and anxiety hotline (Note: this is not a paid promotion and the phone number is 1 877-968-8454). I spoke with a woman and she was very kind. I let everything that I was feeling out and I was still crying. I told her I wanted to drop out and she said now was not the time to do that. I must fight the good fight. After she said that I felt a huge relief off my shoulder. Third, I called my old therapist because she told me that I could I just vent on her voicemail and I did. After that phone call, I took a shower and went to bed. Following that phone call, I still did not feel a 100%, and I honestly thought about not going to class the next day.
The next day I went to class and everything was normal. However, I then sat in the bathroom for 45 minutes and just allowed the rain clouds to hoover over me. Following those 45 minutes I decided that I would take it one step at a time and just give my best. I am not saying that I will not have rain clouds over me ever again, however I am not willing to stay that way forever. I want to enjoy life and smile. But from this experience I learned to seek help. No matter if it’s a friend, a hotline your pet and even sitting in the mirror talking through your pain do so. If you’re not ready to talk, as I have not wanted to in the past, I would go for a walk and sit in nature. I know from experience that graduate school is stressful, overwhelming and can cause you to want to quit, but you should push through if the program is a passion of yours. If the program does not fit you nor makes you happy, I would advise taking a break or leaving. My story does end better though, I am taking it one day at a time and not forgetting to smile. I hope you can do so as well and if you need to talk to someone please reach out. We need you here!