When i was in High School I feel like I just went through the motions. Yes, I had friends, did social things outside of school, even won prom queen. That was a pretty cool feeling. As long as I can remember I've been brought up in a loving home and in church. My parents have always been there for me and I know they always will. I cannot be more blessed, I know that. But why did I continue to feel unhappy and miserable? Why did I continue to feel like giving up?
In my head, I was that girl who was always sad, nervous, and just plain out different. I worried about everything, whether it was big or small. I constantly fought with myself. Holding every emotion and feeling inside. I have to admit that I let what others thought about me drag me down. I struggled for a long time alone. Pushing my feelings to the back burner. It wasn't that important. The struggles will get better, I thought.
There come's a point where you just simply can't do it on your own.
Photography by Alex Lane
When I was at my lowest, I felt like it was unfair to be around others feeling how I felt. I distanced myself from a lot of people. Became a bad friend to those who cared for me because I was hurting. I lost everything about myself that I actually enjoyed. I quit dance, lost people that I cared about. At first I thought in order to get better was to change who I was. So I began searching, truth is, I was searching for something I was never going to find without help.
The moment I thought I would be okay was only the beginning. I quickly learned that medicine was not going to be the answer to my problems. Sure, I had good and bad times but overall the medicine and my attitude were now causing more issues for me. I was embarrassed for taking medicine. I tried stopping cold turkey, my best advice is not to try that lol. It's when I'm at my complete lowest that I learn a little bit more about myself. I've always been a people pleaser, always been the "sweet" girl. It’s taken me twenty years to actually realize the basics of self understanding. No-one is perfect. People change. Heck, even Satan was an angel at first. I don't blame people for leaving me because we all know it sucks feeling like you're not helping someone who needs help. But I do cherish the people who have stuck with me throughout my bad times. Even though you may feel it, you slowly you lose contact with people in your life, it's life I'm learning that's how it goes.
Thoughts that I needed to talk, needed to get out of my bed, hang with friends, go to the gym, anything to be honest were always floating around. It's not so much what all you do to get help that actually helps. I've learned accepting that you do need help is the first and main step in the process.
Being depressed to me is like being scared of an object in the dark, even if you turn the light off, the object is still there.
My mom is the reason I'm still here today. It really is a scary statement. i've heard phrases like "people who commit suicide are selfish". To be real with you, I used to think so too. Until you've truly truly been there, you shouldn't say that. To share a deep dark secret with you, I've been to that point. I've been in a place where I have thought, I'm scared to end my life on my own but I do want to die. Driving down the road with thoughts like I would be okay crashing my car. i really can't tell you how scary that is. When I hear people talk about suicide, it's a tough subject, it really is. It's the darkest place you can be. Recently, I've realized that I'm going to have to work really hard to get better and be an inspiration to others. There's so much room to grow and realizing that has helped me. Also realizing the people who have stuck with me through this journey are the people I owe a lot too.
My mom has been telling me for about three years now, "Hannah, maybe you're getting put through this to someday help others". I'm not writing this searching for sympathy, I'm writing this for one reason. If I can help one person by reading this, then it's worth putting my secret out there. It's the scariest feeling being in that dark place but it's harder to actually admit you're not going to be able to get through it on your own. I hope and pray that the people out there who are struggling in silence receive help. i've been there, I know it is an unimaginable feeling but you can get through it. Take the scary jump and ask for help. Don't listen to people who aren't in your position. Do what's best for you and only you. I used to get selfishness mixed up with self care, you need to be selfish in this life. well, sometimes.
Until you've been in that dark place, you shouldn't judge someone's hurting thoughts.
Depression and Anxiety has been the toughest and still my worst nightmare. I know I'm not the only one and I have to be hopeful for others on their own journey as well. I'm still working on myself but I took the first step and am 100% okay with the fact that I do need help getting through this. Okay, I should have warned you before you started reading that this might not be the most cheerful read ever but it's a glimpse of my story. Like I said, I hope it can help at least one person struggling out there afraid to take the next time in healing.
It's okay not to be okay. It's okay to ask for help.