“About 3 years ago, I started feeling like something just wasn’t right. It started with a few bad days at first, but quickly became a permanent state. I wasn’t sure if anyone would take me seriously —but I was sad and gloomy all the time, that I eventually tried to tell my friends and family. Because I was only 14 back then, most people dismissed it as a ‘phase’ or something ‘puberty related’, but with time, I kept getting worse.
I used to stay indoors for weeks at a time and it started getting more difficult for me to socialize. It was as if a dark cloud was constantly looming over me, and just getting up in the morning felt like an impossible task — I started getting thoughts of harming myself.
In January of this year, during a particularly bad night, I snapped. I knew I couldn’t go on for even one more day feeling like that and I decided to do something about it.
I made an appointment with a psychiatrist and took my mother along with me. The doctor diagnosed me with social anxiety and depression— I finally had an answer and knew I wasn’t crazy— I had a problem and that was okay.
I started my medication and once I accepted myself and focused on my healing— amazing things happened. I began to smile and love every part of my life — the good and the bad. Soon after, I met someone special. We spoke about our lives and the universe, and even though neither of us planned on getting into a relationship — we fit together. He knew about my mental health and instead of feeling embarrassed like I used to — I spoke about how proud I was of myself — and that’s when the big change happened. Once you accept yourself, the world has no choice but to accept you too. He’s helped me get here — he’s made me feel special in small but solid ways — like getting me my favourite flowers or just saying things like ‘i’m proud of you’. He’s not my whole world, he’s a part of it, but I’m happier than I’ve ever been in the last few years.
That one night in January changed everything — the second I decided to help myself, things just started getting better. Next week, I’m having a therapy session with my mother — I know that it will bring us closer together. The rest of my family are still coming to terms with my depression, but i’m hopeful that they will accept it soon enough.
The most important thing I want to say is that the first person to help YOU is always YOU. It’s okay to not be okay and to seek help.
I recently read a poem I’d written during the darker days; a poem about suicide — and I can’t believe that was me. I’ve come such a long way and I’m so proud of myself.
As a symbol of my journey, I got this semi colon tattooed — it was a gift from me, to me. Writers use semicolons when they want to end a sentence but chose not to and that’s the reminder I want for myself. That even though I paused and had a low phase, the sentence isn’t over…life isn’t over.”
"About 3 years ago, I started feeling like something just wasn’t right. It started with a few bad days at first, but…