I have written articles about body-shaming, dealing with depression, and self-empowerment before. However, I have never been able to take my own advice. I would write the article with all of my heart and send it to those I knew needed it most, but then turn around and not take the advice or apply it to my own life.

When waves of depression and anxiety hit me, I fall beneath the surface and refuse to come back up for air until the wave has disappeared.

When all of my subjects for journalism classes began to bail and I had to scramble, I snapped a chain around my ankle. I let it drag me down and hold me back from doing the best I could.

When I was directly bullied about my weight by someone I thought I could trust, I broke. I sobbed hysterically in my room when no one was around. I became conscious of every single bite I took and how it would make me look to others.

The moral of the story is that I was more willing to drown than to fight for my right to survive. But not anymore. It was like a switch went off in my heart that said: "Nope, you're going to fight".

Since these issues arose in my life, I have taken steps to improve my mental health. I have started going to therapy, taking medicine, and working on strategies to keep myself calm. I have worked tirelessly to make my final project amazing — and it's now being published into a book. Not to brag.

Most importantly, I have confronted the person that bullied me, cried to them, and let them know that they truly broke my self-esteem. I can't speak for that person, but I truly hope that they have learned the consequences of their actions and refuse to treat others that way ever again.

To survive, as defined by Merriam-Webster is as follows:

"To continue to live or exist, especially in spite of danger or hardship".

I survived. I pushed my way back to the top. I went back to look at my previous advice and finally trusted myself to know what is best for me. I've learned how to speak my mind and not submit to ideals that I don't agree with.

This is a plea to anyone that needs it. I am not feeding you any cliché advice or giving you ideas on how you should empower yourself. I am simply telling you to survive. Whatever that means to you, please use it. If it means striving to better yourself or even getting past a hard time in your life with what little strength you have, do it.

To end this article, I am using a quote from one of my favorite authors in her book "Zodiac".

"Trust in your fears, they are real" - Romina Russell

Listen to your instincts. If they are telling you something, believe them. They are telling you how to survive the unsurvivable and how to be OK.

If you or anyone else you know is struggling with suicide, please click the link below for resources and any help that you may need. You are not alone and you are worth it.

https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/