Today marks the twenty-fourth year of my existence on Earth. Today, I'm a year older and a year wiser. Today, I learned a few things about life.
1. Life is good, no matter how shitty it is.
I am clinically depressed. There, I said it. I have been depressed since I was fifteen, and it was just now, after nine years, that I sought professional help. I've had my fair share of ups and downs, and even though I've been in the dark for so long, I realized just how wonderful life is, that life is good in spite of all the negativity, and that there is definitely always a rainbow after the rain.
2. Your family always has your back.
I've been through a phase in my life when I shut out my family from my own world. I lived a double life: one that I thought would be at par with my family's standards, and one that I lived on my own, afraid that I won't be accepted. For years, I thought creating a facade could shield me from all the pain, but then again, you can never be free if the truth is kept under the rug. When I thought my family could never accept me, in the end, at the shittiest part of my life, who was there for me? My family. They've been there for me all along; I just didn't see it.
3. You can only count on a few trusted friends.
I am an introvert, but that didn't stop me from making a lot of friends. The past few weeks have been the worst weeks for me: trips to the emergency room, treatment for my depression, adverse effects of my medications, and missing work. I have been out of the social scene for a year plus, but still, my truest friends never failed to show up when I needed them the most. They were there for me all throughout, no matter how alienated I have felt lately. I only have a few friends, but I know I can trust them with my life. Quality over quantity.
4. No one can ever take your place.
Suicidal thoughts are inevitable when you are depressed. Depression is like drowning, in that you feel so trapped and alone while everyone else seems to be breathing just fine. My view of the world is warped, making me feel like I have to own every wrong in the world, as if all the bad things that happen is my fault. I do not see my self-worth; I failed to realize that I am important too. The thing is, all of us matters, and your existence is interconnected with all the people who exist in this world, and without you, the world would be a different place. I didn't realize that until now; it was a hard lesson to learn.
5. The truth shall set you free.
I am a liar. Yes, I create white lies in order to cover up the things that I feel are not acceptable to my family and friends. But the more I hide the truth, the heavier I feel and the more complicated things become. This is the reason my depression got worse: I always said I was okay even though I freakin' wasn't. I never opened up to people; I kept it all inside until boom, I couldn't take it anymore. The biggest lesson I learned from this experience is that, you need to be open about yourself to other people. Depression isn't something that I should be ashamed of, because if I do, it's like being ashamed that I have diabetes (which I don't). Depression is an illness, and it doesn't mean I am crazy; just misunderstood. Being afraid, alone, angry, and hurt are things that I shouldn't hide either, because these are real emotions that all people feel at some point in our lives. Lying doesn't shield you from criticisms; it'll only make it worse. That's why I'm coming clean and am opening myself to the world:
I am Kristenne, twenty-four years old, clinically depressed, and I'm fighting.
Life is good. Life is beautiful. :-)
Feeling down and troubled? You might like my entries in my Love Yourself Project.