All my life I have battled with depression. I know what it’s like to repeatedly lose the fight. Life used to be gloomy. Laughter was unknown to me. Music was foreign. Food was tasteless. Showers no longer refreshed me. The beach didn’t replenish my soul anymore. The touch from loved ones felt cold. I was empty, dead! Nothing brought me joy. I ended up self-harming to feel, and then it became an addiction I needed to hide. My perception in life was tainted. Destroyed by years of torment and abuse. I honestly believed life was no longer worth it. Killing myself was my only option.
After multiple failed attempts, life began to shine, and that’s when darkness crawled into my life once again. This time it was different, stronger. I could no longer hold onto hope. Suddenly, I felt a rush of emotions mixed together. I felt anger, sadness, guilt, jealousy, fear, disgust, and surprise. It was overwhelming, and I snapped. I broke a glass cup and grabbed the biggest, sharpest piece I could find. Crying I pushed it against my wrist. Fortunately, I thought of my parents, brother, and best friends. I knew that my death would hurt and I didn’t want to burden them.
Frightened I called my father. Knowing that if I didn’t get help immediately I wouldn’t be here. My parents got me help and with intense therapy I was able to see life like I once did as a young child. I realized how faulty my perception of life was. I recognized my depression was mostly my fault. Life is cruel and although I experienced pain and trauma, it was up to me to do something about it. Instead of falling victim.
I am happy I didn’t kill myself because I would have missed my mother’s beautiful smile and my dad’s laughter. I would not have gone to visit my brother in California. I would have not made new friends. I would have missed the new Star Wars saga, among other amazing movies. I would have never seen Panamá gone to the world cup for the first time ever. I would have missed the breathtaking sunsets and sunrises. I wouldn’t have discovered new bands and artists. I would have missed my best friend’s birthday. I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to help so many people. I wouldn’t have written my first book. I wouldn’t of had the opportunity to be myself again. To go out on adventures, road trips and discover new places and cultures. I wouldn’t have been able to see how strong I actually am.
The day I felt true happiness. I cried as if it was the end of the world. That cry where you can’t talk or breath. I had forgotten what it felt like to be genuinely happy, full of joy. If I had killed myself I would have forgotten it. The biggest lesson I learned from this ordeal, is that life may be cruel at times, but its up to us to decided what to do with the pain. We either let it consume us or use it to our advantage and grow. Not everyone you will meet in life will have good intentions, so instead of letting them hurt you. Look at them with compassion because they too are hurting.
Please don’t give up, your situation is temporary. You are surrounded by people that care. You don’t have to fight depression or any other mental disorder alone. Happiness does exist and its achievable as long as you fight for it and most of all don’t lose hope.
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