Would life be the same?

I look at where I am now. I wonder what my life would be like had I did things differently before. Would it be the same? Would it have changed somehow? Would I be better off? Worse off?

I think all the way back to Year 8, when I was 12, when I was sent off to see the school counsellor because I was having difficulty coping, unhappy and crying everyday. What if I was honest about how much I was struggling, and my teachers identified that my issues ran a little deeper?  What if there was some sort of early intervention? Would my problems have been caught and kicked, before they had the chance to grow into even bigger problems later on? Would it have prevented me from self harming, developing an eating disorder, suffering from depression and taking overdoses all those years follwing, up until now?

Had I been compliant with my previous psychiatrist and taken the SSRI he wanted to prescribe at the end of 2008. Would the medication have helped with my depression, my bulimia? Would my moods have lifted? Would I be bingeing and purging less than I am now? Or, harder to imagine, not at all?

If the appointment with my ex-psychologist hadn’t fell through, and I continued seeing her. Would I still be attending therapy with her now? Would the CBT and mindfulness have actually started to help? Would I have ceased therapy, not because it didn’t work out with her, but because I was well enough to do so?

Even thinking about my current situation. Had I not met my friends, and had they not found out about my OD, I wouldn’t have had an ambulance called on me. Had an ambulance not arrived, my parents would still remain blissfully ignorant about my mental ill health. Had my parents remained in the dark, I would have not sought private mental health treatment again, and I would not be seeing a psychiatrist in a week. Would I have been going to headspace for counselling instead? Would I have sought help from a Uni psychologist had headspace fell through? Or would I have remained without any treatment at all?

Besides the obvious symptoms of my mental illnesses present, I wonder about the other aspects of my life. Have they been changed by mental illness too? What if I wasn’t suffering from mental health issues? Would I still be failing Uni, like I am now? Would I be of normal body size, underweight or overweight? Would I be able to keep friends and make the effort to stay in touch, instead of losing them and rejecting invitations to go out?

It’s strange to think that a simple action has the potential to shift the whole course of our life. It scares me to think that alterring one variable, just one variable, could turn y0ur whole life upside down and change the direction you’re heading altogether. It’s like trying to build a tower out of wooden blocks, just one block out of place, and the whole structure could come toppling down.

So many questions left unanswered. But what’s happened has happened, and nothing can be done to change the past now. All I can hope for is that my life is travelling the direction it was meant to and that in the end everything will fall into place. I have to keep believing that everything that happens, happens for a reason.

9 thoughts on “Would life be the same?

  1. Hi 🙂
    I agree, it is scary that one variable has a knock on effect. But I guess that can also be seen as exciting. How boring would it be if our life was just a boring predictable straight line. I think that without downs you can’t have ups.
    I hope you’re well 🙂

  2. i have those thoughts sometimes too. What if I never started doing drugs? Would I have been more mentally stable? If I were more stable, would my ED never have developed? Just this morning I was thinking, ‘what if reacted to someone calling me overweight many years ago differently?’ ‘what if I just said ‘fu** you’ instead of spiraling downward into my ED?

    ahh, but it’s so useless…I cant answer those questions. Things are the way they are. You live and you learn and move on. Im growing and changing, I cannot dwell on my past. Your past makes you unique and can be used as a great learning tool..

    Hope your having a good friday!!

    Dana xx

  3. Everything does happen for a reason, I believe. Everything is a learning experience, and you will always take something from it. It’s interesting how things turn out, and there’s always a mixture of outcomes, nice surprises and unfortunate incidents…at least life isn’t boring 😉

    Sarah x

  4. I’ve also wonder a lot about that. I’ve wondered if I’d told about the abuse when I was little, what kind of difference it might have made. Would I have gotten more help? Or maybe my parents would have taken it out on me. It’s hard to say. They’ve certainly taken it out on me since I’ve told as an adult. I hate think what they’d have done to me if I’d outed the abuse as a child vulnerable to them.
    I think it’s easy to say that if we’d done something different in the past that things would have gone so much better. I don’t know if it’s true though. It may have gone differently but maybe not better. At the time we make the choices we do, we judge the situation the best we can. Sometimes it doesn’t bring about the ideal responses from others. But even if we’d made the most ideal choice at the time it may not have gotten the ideal response we like to think it would have.
    For me, I know that I did the best I could at the time. Even if I had told earlier about the abuse or if I’d told someone other than my parents, my family was still very unhealthy. It wouldn’t have made my family a healthy one had I told someone else or at a different time.
    And, even if I’d gotten different kinds of assistance with my depression, I’d probably still be dealing with it. I don’t think there were any moment to moment to moment decision I could have made that would make me free of my depression right now.

  5. That’s something I think about really often too. What if, what if, what if? There are so many things I would do differently.

    I used to react with skepticism (tinged with envy) when I read about/heard others declare they wouldn’t change anything. Today I suspect that’s probably not because there’s nothing they regret, but that they’ve arrived at this level of self-assurance that allows them to say they wouldn’t change anything confidently because they’re happy with who they are/who they have become.

    I hope we’ll be like that one day in future too.


    P/s – is there a way I could follow you on wordpress?

    • Thanks for your comment.
      And yes, if you go to your Blogger dashboard, under the list of blogs you follow, you’ll see a button with ‘Add’ on it. If you click that, you can copy and paste the URL of blogs you want to follow manually. Thanks for wanting to follow!
      Take care,
      Cassie x

  6. This is an interesting idea and one that I have been thinking about myself lately. On may 25 2005, will be the date that Sarah went on a diet to lose weight and promptly there after, lost control and it turned into an ED that saw her fall underweight within five months having lost an enormous amount of weight in that time. I often wonder what would have hapenned if I had done it another way instead of starving myself and starting the ritual of weighing and therefore positively reinforcing the behaviours I was doing. After five months, it was too late. I had the ED voice and I think once you go that far, you can’t stop it, it’s too late, you then have to think about recovery, which I only thought about after three years and I’m still searching it after almost five, or five in three days time. Scary! I would lovel to turn an older self of me back in time to stop the younger Sarah from making that choice. I found this post really interesting Cassie!

  7. Hey,
    I sometimes think about the ‘ifs’ as well. If only I’d not come back to Singapore for my gap year. If only I didn’t meet my then-boyfriend. If only I didn’t get together with him. If only if only if only… so many if only’s. But I guess we can’t keep living life thinking about what could have been. Instead, we have to focus on where we are at right now, and look forward to where we want to be tomorrow, next week, next year, and so on. ED tries to hold us back much of the time but the more we let it, the more life we are sacrificing. Not worth it don’t you think?

    It’s always hard to give up control. I struggle with it so much. But I know that we deserve to live a full life that does not revolve around ED. We have the power to change our circumstances and I’m sure we can and we will! You’re a wonderful, beautiful girl hun and you can do this! I’m here, cheering you on!

    Much love
    Nat xoxo

  8. I have the same thoughts…if only. I often wonder if I were younger and schools were more aware if I would have received the treatment I needed. Or if my parents took my OD seriously instead of pretending it never happened. In the end, all has made me who I am.

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