Monday, January 4, 2016

Hello – My name is Saralyn and this is my introduction and first post in Finding Fullness. I wanted to start by sharing a little bit about my story and why I am creating this blog. The first thing you need to know about me is that I am a searcher. I am always asking myself the big picture questions. Am I happy? Am I content? If not, then why? I would like to think that I am a pretty self aware person and that this quality aids me in some respects. However, the internal dialogue that results can lead to a never ending conveyor belt of distortions about my life.  I often find myself thinking “I will be happy when I’m skinny, when I graduate, when I no longer suffer from anxiety, fill in the blank.” This struggle impacts my day to day and my general ability to find contentment from moment to moment. This is my life.

I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder and depression in 2009. It was my junior year in college and I was suffering from debilitating panic attacks. Once I started taking anti-depressants and anxiety medication I began to feel better. However, my weight began to creep up. In one year I went from a healthy woman at 140 lbs. to an overweight woman at 185 lbs. I don’t blame all of the weight gain on the medicine but it definitely led to an increase in my appetite. I never felt truly satisfied.

In 2012 I completed my first year of law school. During that time I started to experience widespread chronic pain that didn’t seem to have a source. After months of feeling like it was all in my head, and numerous doctors visits I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I ended up taking a two year break from law school and at one point I didn’t think I would ever go back. After months and months of trial and error I finally developed a routine that would keep my pain mostly at bay. I returned to law school in August of 2014.

The one person that kept me sane during all of this is my amazing wife Sam. She supports me through all of my up and downs and never resents it. In March of this year I was hospitalized with depression and suicide ideation. Once I left the hospital I entered into a 6 week mental health treatment program. Sam couldn’t have been more supportive and understanding. We were married May 9, 2015.

I want to reiterate that I’m not sharing all of this to gain sympathy or have a pity party. I only share it to give a context for why I am where I am now. A young woman overcoming life’s struggles by seeking out health and fulfillment. Right now I am a law student attempting to manage stress. I am on a path to losing weight and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. I am searching for self confidence and positive self image. And I am hoping to process all of these efforts by writing about it in a blog. Hence, Finding Fullness came to be.

While I am not expecting to have a million readers I do hope that my honesty and openness will relate to someone who needs to hear it. Please follow along as I gain insight on how to live a healthy and happier life.