I knew that one day this moment would come. As a writer at heart, my most authentic moments come when I’m here, in the still of the night, with just my digital pen and paper. Tonight is no exception. Just as this post implies, this is going to be my final post on Little Penny Berry. Why? Well, let’s dive in for one last time ❤
I spent the better part of 2018 battling my nearly decade-long bout with anxiety and depression. Past relationships left scars that I thought nothing could heal. Try as I might on my own, I just couldn’t manage everything. So I decided to reach out. I put a team of medical professionals around me that were top-notch. I did the very thing that I swore I would never do: I went on medication to help treat my anxiety. I even got an MRI to ensure that my brain was fine. Thankfully, it was. So, I began taking medicine to help stop the panic attacks. My neurologist warned me that it would be nearly 2 months before I began to feel like my happy, bubbly, outgoing self again. He wasn’t wrong.
For almost 8 weeks I struggled to keep my eyes open (literally). I passed out at 9 pm and woke up at 6 am. But for the first time, in a very long time, I was finally getting a decent night’s sleep. I began to wonder if the medicine-induced haze would ever lift. I gained 15 lbs. in the fog of medication. And then my brain began to clear. I was still taking my medicine, but suddenly I could convey my thoughts again. I felt calmer, and more able to tackle the stress of life. I felt stronger, and even happier on a regular basis. I felt renewed! After a decade and feeling like I had to surrender to the jitters and lack of sleep…. I was feeling GREAT!
So I decided to do the one thing that I wasn’t able to do before: I decided to reach out and make friends. In my early 20’s this was the easiest thing to do. But now at 34, I found myself introverted, shy, and with a handful of stories about my life that would make the average person weep. I’ve been through some really sad shit. But I wanted friends. Perhaps needed friends. I wanted to connect with people, and share the well of love and kindness that I have to spare. So I began reaching out.
People have their own issues, but I’ve always been the kind of person that loves to care for others. Maybe that’s what drew me to submission in the first place? I don’t know. The easiest medium to meeting others, of course, was online. Some connections worked, while others fizzled out. But with each loss, I began to learn more about myself. With the help with a calm, cool head I began to understand more of who I am today. I can’t handle friends coming and going from my life. I can’t handle loss, when I’ve already lost so much. Yet still, I kept reaching out. Finally, just when I had had enough and thought that most of society was narcissistic, I made a friend.
For the sake of privacy, I won’t name names. They were kind, funny, calm, and I enjoyed their company. We laughed, bantered, and I sat listening to a life story completely different from my own. In many ways I could relate, and shared advice that could only come through walking across fire in my own life. Other times I felt their kindness reach through cyber space simply because they wanted to be there with me. But like all good things, it too, came to an end. I felt a deep pang in my heart as I stared down at the silence on my phone. They were gone. Gone but certainly not forgotten. Tears slid down my cheeks. My normal desire to retreat to little space when things get hard didn’t come. And it was there in that moment I realized…. I had outgrown being little.
I don’t want to be Penny Berry anymore. I just want to be me.
I’m far from perfect. I fuck up and say things that piss people off. I’m a parent who is trying to balance it all, just like countless others like you out there. I love honestly, and I love hard. I put myself out there with total transparency, because if anything that the horrors of my past has taught me, it’s this: life really is short. Time is the greatest gift of all. People will come and go in your life, so soak up each moment because you never know when they will be gone. Take it from someone who has lost 2 of the most important people in her entire life, that time is sacred. Don’t squander it.
To all of you who has believed in me, and this blog, thank you from the bottom of my heart. Thank you for supporting me, leaving lovely comments, and smashing that like button. Thank you for following this blog. There are so many wonderful, creative bloggers out there to follow, so I encourage you to continue to read and seek them out. Find material that works for you. Always follow your heart and keep your personal safety at the forefront of every decision you make. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. People will either accept you for who you are, or they won’t. You can’t control how people feel, but you can control how you expose your heart. Feel. Live. Breathe.
That’s it from me for this post, my friends. I wish you all the love, hugs, and snuggles in the world. Remember to stay kind…. and as always… keep on smiling.