“If you go deeper and deeper into your own heart, you’ll be living in a world with less fear, isolation and loneliness.” – Sharon Salzberg.
This is the story of Swati – Someone with a beautiful mind and a brave heart! Born and brought up in Thane, Swati pursued her Bachelors in Economics with a major in Statistics. She works as a Data Analyst in a company now. “I care about my social image a lot.” – is what describes Swati and makes her an ambivert despite her love to socialise. Swati enjoys writing and feels communication holds the power to make or break the world, and surely, we second that! However, as much as writing was concerned, Swati couldn’t find much time for her writing after her college ended owing to the responsibilities that followed.
“Communication is something very important in my life. I don’t like to give up easily. For me, if there is no clear communication, then there is nothing between two people.”
Swati’s life had been as challenging as breaking the iron nail with bare hands. Following the demise of her beloved mother when Swati was in 7th standard, she was about to enter a very turbulent period of her life. Swati’s mother was going through a kidney problem and was on dialysis for the last 6-7 years before she passed away. Swati describes her mother as an enthusiastic person who was never seen sitting with a sad face. Swati’s mother was going to the office in such a condition with much cheerfulness.
“Following the death of my mother during an auspicious festival of Holi, my father and my sister were my sole support system. My father never showed any gloominess nor did he make me feel short of anything that my mother could have done.”
Swati had days in her life, where she would see mothers of this generation spending time with their daughters and posting photos. Moreover, there were days like Mother’s Day, where Swati would be filled with a sensation of loneliness. Swati’s school life was more about keeping up to the high expectations as her elder sister was one of the toppers. She was bound to maintain a certain reputation. Entering her college, Swati had set foot into a new environment and she found it even more difficult to adjust to the same.
“Suddenly, my dad passed away before the Covid outbreak. It is really difficult for me to say that in person but both my parents aren’t there right now.”
Swati’s father was a strong individual with a talkative nature and a love for social service. He was never indulged in any sort of substance abuse. Swati’s father was more like a social butterfly and so much so was his love for his daughters that he never felt short of providing enough love. By the age of 65, he had suddenly developed a pain in his stomach, which turned out to be a tumour. Without further ado, he was rushed into an operation which turned out to be the last time Swati saw him. Her father had taken his last few breaths with 2 severe strokes that followed and in no time, Swati was left devastated and loneliness had become the only sign of ray in the coming days.
“My father always followed a routine and he had such great plans of travelling. It’s not my mistake that they passed away, but I don’t know why I feel it’s so difficult to talk about it.”
Soon, Swati decided to stay at her home where she grew up with her parents. Although she had a couple of relatives living in the neighbourhood, she wanted to be on her own. Living alone is not a bad thing, but for Swati, it came with a ton of challenges. Swati was spending most of the time on her bed. She had nothing to look forward to in her life. She was feeling completely baseless and the walls were beaming with isolation and loneliness. Swati suddenly had no one to talk to. From buying groceries to cleaning up, Swati was there on her own.
“I started feeling pressurised. Sometimes, I used to order more groceries than needed as I felt that it would finish up and there would be nothing. I was starting to develop a fear of uncertainty.”
Swati was on her toes 24*7. Lockdown brought more agony on her plate as her fear of uncertainty had reached a new level. As the pandemic witnessed people facing various issues socially and financially, Swati found herself in a similar situation as she had to take care of everything on her own. On the other hand, Swati also was being affected by a break-up back in her teenage years which didn’t turn out to be very healthy. This took a toll on her mental health as well. By the end of the day, Swati was over expecting, oversleeping, uncertain about everything and had even lost her concentration for the daily chores.
“I decided to seek professional help as it would allow me to have an unbiased opinion. I needed a third-person perspective and I also didn’t want to become a burden on anyone.”
Swati came across and connected with Ms Nikita Aggarwal, a counselor from YourDOST, via chats and audio calls. She started pouring her heart out. The years and years of anguish was finally being reflected through her sharing. She finally felt heard and soon was guided through certain techniques to deal with her situation. She was suggested to maintain a to-do list where she had to organise her tasks on a part-of-the-day basis. So, when he accomplished even one task, she felt satisfied. She was also advised to mark the incidence where she felt low to get proper insight on the same. Soon. Swati was suggested to visit a psychiatrist to take medicinal help.
“One important thing that I learnt was rationalisation. It allowed me to rethink my fears and get a practical insight on them.”
Soon. Swati’s energy levels started accelerating and her loneliness turned into power. She started feeling pride and deep gratitude for her life and had a revamped focus on her job. Swati described Nikita as a great listener and she appreciates her proactive attitude towards helping Swati get help as soon as possible. Swati turned her loneliness to solitude and solitude is a peaceful place to be in. Swati rates her overall improvement through therapy with 4 stars out of 5.
YourDOST salutes Swati for her bravery and utter efforts of distinguishing between letting go and not giving up. Swati is truly a warrior who stands as an inspiration to many out there who are struggling with their own story. Swati showed us that there is always a way to come out of any kind of misery with some effort and faith. There is a lot to look forward to in life only if one believes in themself.
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