I had a mental breakdown, in March 2013.
I had just turned 23 years old.
The victim advocate had warned me, back after my military sexual trauma event, that I needed to find someone to talk to. It’ll catch up, she said. And it did.
I was fine, for months.
I was fine, until I wasn’t.
I was fine until I started to slowly disintegrate, surrounded by men who reminded me so much of the ones I knew and in a place so similar to the one I remembered.
I was fine until I started locking myself in the bathroom during breaks, crying; I’d give myself ten minutes, then dry my eyes and go right back out to the maelstrom. Because that was how it felt. But I was fine.
I was fine until I crashed my car into the back of a truck, totaled it, and ended up on the side of the road wondering what the hell my life had become.
I wasn’t fine.
I got new orders, got a fresh start, saw a counselor. I slowly put my life back together, until one day I looked at the sun in the trees and realized I saw both the shadows and the play of the light. Then I realized that no, I’m still not fine. But I am better.
I realized that the colors were richer than I’d seen in awhile. I realized I felt a little more alive.