It’s not easy to let down your wall and admit your flaws. But in order to make sure other people know they aren’t alone, I’m going to give people I’m close with and not close with a glimpse inside a problem I’ve been struggling with since elementary school.
I suffer from depression.
I’ve had a lot of things handed to me. There are SO many people I know who have had it harder than me. This isn’t a pity post to make it seem like I’ve had a hard life or I was mistreated at any point. I’ve always had a strong support system of family and friends to keep me going and I hope they all know how grateful I am for them.
I get sad a lot. Nothing bad has to happen to me. I don’t have to have something tragic happen. I will just wake up and just feel sad. It is the kind of sadness that makes it hard to breathe and pulls me away from things and people I love. I try to pull myself out of it but it’s something I can’t help. I don’t do it for attention or for pity. If I could change the hopeless feeling that hits me at random, I would.
I’ve made a lot of mistakes, I’ve hurt a lot of people, and my list of regrets is longer than the things I’m proud of. I have no excuse for the things I’ve done and I’m not going to just claim “I was depressed”, but I know it had a lot to do with the situations in my life. The problem is that it’s taken me a very long time to admit that I had a problem. I spent so much of my life with a chip on my shoulder claiming nothing was wrong with me and everyone else just sucked. I could have created an easier life for myself if I just would have let go of my pride and admitted I needed help. Unfortunately, I have a stubborn streak a mile wide and decided to screw up opportunities for myself and push people who cared away. I became obsessed with self destruction and clung to the people who weren’t good for me and hurt me because I knew I didn’t deserve love in my life.
The worst thing that depression has done to me is my need to push people away who care. I’ve ruined countless friendships by saying hurtful things to people who did nothing but offer me unconditional love and support. Those people will know who they are when they read this and I want to apologize for all the words that hurt your feelings. It was like I had no control over what was coming out of my mouth and I just wanted someone else to know how much my heart was hurting. The more friends tried to help, the more I tried to get them out of my life. I can’t understand what makes me do this. Right after I say something hurtful, I’m filled with self loathing which just makes me more bitter. I turn into a flakey, unreliable person. I hide from the world and try to pretend I like what I’m doing to myself.
Junior high was a tough time for me. I was bullied. And I also bullied other people. I was awkward and tried way too hard to fit into a group of people I didn’t belong with. I wasn’t athletic, I wasn’t pretty, I was overweight, and struggled in school. One time I got ditched at the lunch table where I sat alone trying not to cry into my tater tot casserole, I was taken in by the group of “nerds” in my class who I had previously been so much better than.. (and class of 2011, you know I say nerds with a ridiculous amount of love in my heart for you). Seven years later and that story still brings tears to my eyes because my class brought me out of my depression, stopped my self harming, and made me okay. High school wasn’t an easy thing for me, but with the people I had surrounding me all four years I made it through.
I went to college in Billings for my first semester. My parents tried to convince me to go to a community college, but I had to go against their advice of course. I didn’t do well there. I was just a number and that wasn’t a good thing for a student like me. I made so many friends and have amazing memories with people I will love forever. But depression hit me for the first time in a long time when finals came and I felt like I was disappointing everyone and proving the people who claimed I would fail right. I made the decision to transfer to a smaller college. The next semester I packed up my stuff and headed for Glendive, Montana. I’d like to tell you I got my shit figured out. I went to class, made a few good friends, and got through the semester. But it turns out depression and alcohol are not something you should mix. I wasn’t an alcoholic, but I used alcohol to cope with missing my friends in Billings and missing my family back home. It was the train wreck you’d expect and I have a lot of regrets of how I spent my time there.
I headed home and got a few jobs back in my hometown for the summer. I finally was genuinely happy. I trusted everyone around me, I was with my family, I worked hard, and things were going right for me. I made the decision not to head back to school and stay in Denton. I was nice to people, I adopted a dog, I had a great cat, and I just loved my life so much. My wall was down and I had an open heart. Of course, nothing good can last forever. I made some dumb mistakes as time went on and I suffered the consequences. Instead of being mature and facing my problems, I quit my jobs and headed out to our ranch to hide. I spent a lot of my time crying and not understanding why I was so dumb to trust people who were ready to throw me under the bus and talk behind my back. I fell into one of the toughest bouts of depression I’d ever been in and completely isolated myself. My parents put up with a lot of bull shit from me because I was literally an angry bear ready to verbally attacked anyone who questioned anything I did. I went through four months of bitterness till I was offered a job. God put me through hell to bring me to some amazing people I’ve become close with through this job. I pulled out of my depression and started to see the light. I have an amazing support system of people I know I can call anytime of day to help me with whatever situation I put myself into.
I also met a lot of amazing people through Instagram this year. It’s weird to say that I met so many great people through hash tagging a picture of my cat or horse. I met so many people who made me feel like I wasn’t alone and kind things to say to me that helped my self esteem more than they know.
I’m ready for 2014 to be an amazing year. I have plans that I’m actually going to go through with :). I have an amazing family to help push me towards my goal. I have friends who have my back and love me despite how crazy and overbearing I can get. Thank you to everyone who got through 2013 with me even though I was the most unlikeable person in the world. I love you all!!