For a very long time, I've been wanting to write something meaningful and something with purpose; what I'm trying to say is that I am tired of submitting mediocre entries where I constantly procrastinate throughout the week and then submit mediocre articles minutes or hours before their deadline at the behest of my editors.
For quite some time I've been dealing with depression and I think it is about time I come clean about my condition and how it has affected me and the decisions I've made in my life so far. I am also sharing my condition as a means to reach the many suffering from similar problems. Although my problems might not be monumental, they will help many of you realize that if your friend or family member is going through hardship, be there to help and support them, be the ears to their problems and their consul of advice, do anything that you can in your power to make them feel better, help them rise above their adversities.
I developed anxiety as a child, and to a degree I also suffered from speech impediment or more commonly known as stammering. I used to get terrified by meeting new people and it had gotten to the point where I couldn't face people. Growing up, I learned to hide my anxiety with laughter and smiles, but somewhere within me I felt this void, a black hole of a sort that was swallowing me into an abyss. It wasn't until recently that I began sharing the extent of my anxiety with my friends to help them better understand why I am the brash, unfiltered, and extroverted person that I am. I guess the change in my attitude spawns from all my years of being shy and introverted.
And about my depression, it all began with the death of a family member; in that moment, not only did I go through denial but I also felt guilt in which I thought had I gotten to say something or do something with that deceased person, things might have gone much differently, and so on. For most of my life, it had been my anxiety that had given me a hard time, but my benign depression became this colossal thing when I went through my very first heartache. It was around then (my freshman year of college) when I began self medicating, trying to help my depression with alcohol and meaningless sex, and the more I did that, the more my heartache became a bigger mountain for me to climb. Not only did I associate my heartache with losing the girl I loved but also losing a sense of purpose in life, a life where I envisioned a future with the girl I loved.
It wasn't long before I began searching for help at the suggestion of my ex from when we we dated. I began therapy and for quite sometime it helped...it helped until my very last session, and just when I thought my depression had subsided, it hit me like a ton of bricks again. It became apparent that alcohol and meaningless sex were the only means through which I could subvert my attention from my breakup, and although drinking and hooking up subverted my attention, they were in the end short-lived and the pain of losing someone would rush back into my head.
To overcome my depression I began to set goals for myself, and although I have yet to find a purpose in life again, I have set goals that I know I will achieve. I started by hanging around my friends and family; I started going out more and not just for the sake of partying and drinking. I began reading, I began writing short stories, I started a lifestyle and image consulting brand under the name of AVARYASTYLE where I give tips on fashion, grooming, health, diet, fitness, relationships, and etc. I began to do things that made me happy, and doing those things made me feel great. I'm not saying that I am cured, and I'm sure as hell not saying that I've overcome my depression. My depression is benign; it's still there, to a lesser degree, and it's triggered by thoughts of loneliness and the fear of losing loved ones. It's not over, but I have friends and family that are there every step of the way to be my support system, and I love them for being my support system in times of both happiness and crisis.
I'd like to thank my ex. The thought of her prompted me to write this. If you are reading this then I want you to know that I am truly apologetic for being petty, and I hope you can forgive me. I would also like to add that you continue to inspire me to be the best of me, and that I will always have admiration for you.
Every one of us suffers from some degree of depression. Neither form is better than the other, but it is when we share and let go of our fears that we can rise above adversity. Like Pat Solitano says in Silver Linings Playbook, "EXCELSIOR!"