Depression – is a common and serious medical illness that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act, according to Google. However, some might say that depression is just “a thing”. Some might even say that depression is just a simple phase that most people go through and it’s not even a real illness, that it’s just an excuse to get out of everything on our daily lives.
A few months ago, I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety that resulted to acute insomnia. Before I experienced this, I knew that depression is something that you cannot take for granted but I didn’t expect it to be this hard.
There are times that I feel extremely sad. Before, I thought that depression is just sadness, but it’s not. Sadness goes away and it’s just temporary, but this has been following me for years and it has gotten worse within the past few months. I feel alone. I don’t want to talk to anyone. I cry for no reason. I don’t know; it just hit me like a ton of bricks. It’s hard. I keep on pretending and smiling and telling everybody that I’m okay when I’m really not. Until now.
It seems like the problems are never-ending and I feel like I’m such a failure in every way. I feel like nothing is going right. I feel like I always find a way to put myself down. I feel that God is being unfair with me, that I cannot do anything right even if I try, that I have to exert a lot of effort just to do the simple things, that the things that I enjoy doing the most before are not making me happy anymore.
There will be nights… okay, a lot of nights when I cannot sleep. It’s exhausting. There will be times that I’m up for the whole day. I took sleeping pills, but I had to discontinue them because I got scared of relying on them every damn time. Most of my friends don’t know about my situation. Only those I see every day knows about it, but I don’t want to talk about everything with them, either.
I feel like I have to keep everything within myself, alone. I don’t want their pity. I don’t want anyone to feel sorry for me and some might have misunderstood the things that I do without them even knowing the whole story behind it. And it’s okay. As I have learned a long time ago to not give a fuck to everything and everyone that is not even worth a second of my time.
Everybody, even doctors, tell me that I should talk to someone and let everything out, so I can lighten up my feelings a bit; but how do I tell anyone something that even I cannot even put into words? How do I explain to someone that feeling of wanting to have everything back to normal, but not knowing how to make that possible? How do I explain all of the things in my mind with the fear of being judged with my choices? How do I explain that this situation is controlling me instead of the other way around?
Depression is a real illness. It’s not a made up sickness that you can get over in just a day or two. It’s a process. And I’m still on it. I’m being haunted by the thought of “what ifs” and I start blaming myself for everything. I stopped writing. I don’t enjoy traveling as much as I used to and I started thinking about quitting my job because I keep finding ways to pull myself down all the time. I feel trapped and with responsibilities in my my personal life and it’s just too much and overwhelming for me to think about it. Sometimes, I feel like I just want to escape from everything. I’m denying it, but I’d be lying if I’ tell you that it didn’t crossed my mind to want to end things. It’s haunting.
(READ: An Open Letter From Someone Who Lost A Loved One To Depression)
I’m starting to accept everything now, though. I understand that not everything will turn out the way I planned it, but I just have to accept the fact that there will be flaws along the way. Sometimes, we have to make the decision that we are afraid to be judged, but let me remind you that it’s okay. You cannot please everyone. And it’s not your damn job to be good all the freaking time.
To those who don’t understand the situation we’re in, you cannot tell who among your friends are depressed. You don’t know what goes behind those smiles and laugh when you’re all together. You don’t know what he/she is thinking when they’re alone. You don’t know the reason why they are being difficult sometimes. And if they ever open up to you, don’t judge. Don’t give your opinion. Just listen.
Listen to what they were going through.
Listen to their feelings and emotions and just tell them that they’re going to be okay. Just let them speak everything out. Let them cry. Let them show you their vulnerability, even if she/he is the strongest person that you know.
(READ: This is What Depression Feels Like)
And to those who are struggling at this moment, it’s going to be a long road, but I’m here to tell you that everything is going to be okay. We’re going to be okay. It will just take time and if you ever reach a breaking point when everything seems off and it feels like you cannot handle how things are going anymore, think. Think twice, then think again.
Life can take you to beautiful places and adventures, but you have to give it a chance. We are not defined by our failures and wrong decisions in life, but it is how you stand up from it and how well you take it despite of the mishaps that’s happening to you right now. I know that problems are never ending, and there will always be one but I also realized that it’s a reminder that we’re still alive and it’s something to be thankful for.
You don’t have to fight your battles alone. You have friends, family, or a special loved one that can support you along the way. Write, exercise, travel, or do whatever it is that you’ve wanted to do for the longest time, do it. Do not shut everything out. I know that we all have a choice, but you have to be considerate and think if how the choice that you are making can affect everyone around you. I know that you are tired of hearing the words that “everything is going to be okay” but the truth is, it will, eventually. Maybe not now, but you have to believe and don’t give up on yourself. You’re a strong person and as clichéd as it may sounds: People change, things go wrong. Just remember that life goes on.