One of the saddest things in the world is to feel broken, and although you’ve somehow been figuratively ripped apart, you feel like you can never be put back together again. There are days when I ask myself, What are you staying here for? Most times I don’t even have an answer. Sometimes I just don’t want to be here anymore, and those are the toughest thoughts to deal with.
But the days that I truly cherish are the ones where I’m so overwhelmed with happiness that it feels like I can beat this depression. That happiness comes from friends and the jokes we share with one another, it comes from family members and their unconditional love for me. I love when friends and family are able to penetrate the barrier of lies and insecurities that depression creates, allowing me to feel love. Those are the days that make life worth living, and those are the days that keep me fighting.
The extremes of depression are the worst. One minute you could be on cloud nine and in the next you can feel like you’ve hit rock bottom. One day, however, I would like to get to a place where I can know for certain, without a doubt in my mind, that I belong here without the validation that comes from external forces.
There are times when my depression has made me feel like I’m not doing anything right in my life. That’s a tough thought to fight against, because it feeds itself: Once you’re convinced that you’re worthless, you stop doing anything worthwhile. And suddenly you’ve become the person you already thought you were, someone who naps for hours just to make the days go by faster, and who looks for any excuse to avoid getting up or even turning on the lights.
But you’re not worthless, even if your depression is keeping you from being an active member of society. When I got help and began to start feeling like a human again, I was able to reflect honestly on my achievements and the paths I have taken. And one of the things I’m proudest of, which is something I cling to when the depressive tendencies creep back, is that I’ve always been open about my struggles. I know how much it helps me to be reminded that I’m not alone. If I can do the same for others, I know I’m doing something rewarding.
Some days depression feels like an invisible hand holding my head down. I know the voice of despair lies to me, and I know my worries are unfounded, but some days the lies are very hard to resist, and I feel these brief, soul-crushing moments of despair. And then when I pull through these moments, I feel stronger, but I still fear the next barrage of despair.
My empathy increased dramatically. It is such a difficult thing to understand if you haven’t experienced it. But I always encourage friends to seek therapy/counseling and most of all, not to try to carry the burden by themselves. If you’re struggling today, what you are going through is very real and if anyone gives you the impression you should simply “snap out of it,” then you need to avoid that person’s advice. It’s not that simple. There is help and hope.