When my mom handed me my first notebook and told me to write it all down no matter what was inside of my head, I promised myself that I would never stop. No matter how anxious I may be feeling, how bad my depression may be, or how loud the voices in my head may get, I will never let those things keep me from writing. But recently my depression won.
I found myself once again missing classes because my depression told me nothing good would come out of leaving my bed.
My alarm would go off telling me it was time to get ready for class, but instead of getting up and jumping in the shower, I'd turn off my alarm and go back to bed. I'd listen to the noise in my head telling me that when I get to class, I'll find out I have no idea what any of the information means and my teacher will see how dumb I am. So why should I even go?
I found myself canceling plans because my anxiety and depression told me that my 'friends' were only inviting me out because they felt obligated to.
"They don't really like me. They just feel bad for me." "They're only inviting me because they think I'll get suicidal again if they don't." OR "They really are my friends and they do want to hang out with me. But if I go, they'll see how much I'm struggling. I can't deal with their looks of pity today."
I found myself telling my boyfriend I couldn't hang out because I wasn't feeling well when really I just couldn't handle seeing the look in his eyes when he realized my depression was taking over again.
I couldn't ask for someone more loving and understanding than him. But I also know how much it hurts him when he see's me struggling. How helpless he feels when he can't just hold me and tell me it'll get better because he knows any physical contact will set me off. So instead I just tell him I can't hang out because I'm sick so I don't have to see those looks on his face.
I found myself driving back to my parents' house on weekends because I couldn't handle being around anyone other than my mom.
"She's the person who has been helping me through this the longest. If I tell her I just need to come home and hang out with her, she'll know that I'm struggling but she won't ask me to talk about it until I'm ready to. I can handle that. I think."
And I found the voices in my head getting so loud that I began to believe them when they told me no one would miss me if I took my own life.
"It took almost six months for anyone to realize I was self-harming last time, so I can get away with it for a while again. I know it." "The feeling of broken glass across my skin gave me a feeling of release that I can't begin to put into words. It took me out of the numbness for a while. I need that. No one would care if I was gone anyway, so why shouldn't I do it?"
But what made all of this even worse was that these were the moments when I would grab my pen and notebook and I would write it all down. I would write about my heartbreak, my anger, my joy, my sadness, my feelings of being lost and helpless, and my feelings of doubt. I would write about it all. But instead of writing it all down and releasing it, I've been bottling it up and finding myself avoiding picking up my pen. Why? Because I'm afraid to see what my head really has to say.
I've been afraid to see my brokenness written down on paper staring back at me forcing me to realize that I'm doing as well as I thought I was. That I still have more sad days than happy ones. And that no one needs to bother doubting me because I doubt myself enough already. But then my mom said something to me that made me begin to change my mindset.
I admitted to her recently that I've really been struggling again and that I haven't been able to get myself to write about any of it. And you know what her response was? "No. Screw that. Pick up your pen and write it down. If you're mad, write about it. If you're sad, write about it and let your tears hit the pages. Whatever you're feeling right now, write it down. You need to write it down." She was right. I needed to suck up the fact that whatever I write down may not make sense and it may show what's truly going on in my head. But who cares. I don't write for anyone other than myself, so I need to just let it all out.
So here I am. Sitting at a table in Barnes and Noble with a drink that has way more shots of espresso than I should admit, telling you that I'm struggling with my depression right now. I spend more days wondering why I even bother continuing to fight when it would be so much easier to give up. Telling you that some days the medicine doesn't work as well and I can't get myself out of bed. But I'm still here. I'm continuing to fight and I'm going to continue writing until life begins to makes sense.
If you or anyone you know is struggling right now, I'm here to tell you that it's okay. I'm struggling right now too, but I'm here for you and you're not alone. Please feel free to send me a message if you need to talk and I would be more than happy to talk. Keep fighting, you matter so much more than you realize.
If you or someone you know is in need, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741-741.