April 8, 2016. To you, that's just another date on the calendar. But to me, that's the day I was diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder with Depression. Unfortunately, my story doesn't start here. It all began with my sophomore year of high school.
15 years old. Innocent. Shy. Full of life. Smiling 24/7.
This is what my classmates would've described me as; and it was all true at the beginning. But as the months went on, I would've described myself as:
Broken. Hate. Discouraged. Confused. In pain.
All it took was for me being exposed to the lives of people that participated in self-harm for me to think about it more than I should have. All it took was a couple of bad days to change my entire perception on life.
September 17, 2012 was the day I decided that a pair of scissors controlled my happiness. It all started with just experimenting, telling myself that's all it is. Nothing more. Next thing I knew, I was looking to that pair of scissors to take away my pain. I know what you're thinking: why would anyone do this to themselves? You probably don't understand. Most people don't. You will never understand how much anger, how much self hatred someone must have to take a razor, scissors, etc. and cut into their own skin. I was a slave to self-harm for about 3 and a half years. On first glance, you wouldn't have even known I self-harmed because that lie, "I'm okay," was used by me daily. I didn't even know I was addicted till I told myself I wouldn't cut again, yet I still ran to it every time things were falling apart. I didn't want anyone to know because why would I talk about something that I wasn't proud of. Why did it take so long for me to reach out for help? Because I was okay with hurting myself, but I wasn't okay with hurting the people I love and I knew that's exactly what would've happened. I never wanted to die. I just wanted the pain to stop. I wanted to feel numbness instead of pain.
I can't even tell you how many times I spoke to God, begging to know, "why me?" But I now understand. I had strayed so far away from God, to the point where I was so lost. Through all the struggle and pain, he was guiding me right back towards him, little did I know.
19 years old. Full of life. Always smiling. Follower of Christ.
And I am left with happiness, God, scars on my arms, stomach, and thighs that I will always live with, and a pretty amazing life.
Self-harm isn't welcome in my life anymore. Instead, I welcomed Jesus to take self-harm's place. No longer do I feel worthless because I now believe that God doesn't make worthless things.
My best friends saved me. My family saved me. But most importantly, God saved me.
I decided that I wanted my very first tattoo to be a semi-colon. So simple, but yet worth a thousand words. I am a proud supporter of self-harm and suicide awareness and will devote my whole life to reaching out and being a difference in other people's lives.
To further my recovery, I decided to get a tattoo on my wrist that says "HE>i" because He truly is and some days, even currently, I seem to forget that. But all I have to do is look down at my wrist and it leads me back in the right direction.
Everyone has their own addictions. Alcohol. Cigarettes. Drugs. Self-Harm. But I'm glad my addiction no longer justifies my life. It's just another part of my story.