Who am I? That’s the question I’ve been asking myself most of my life. Defined by others as the shy one, introverted, hard to talk to you and get to know. Is that really who I am? Is that really what they think?
Going back 10 plus years, I was diagnosed with depression in 1998 but there were signs dating back several years and maybe even high school. I remember during my first year university thinking about suicide. I’d even put myself in positions of danger just hoping something would happen to me to stop the voices in my head. I’d punch concrete walls just to numb the pain. The negative voices screamed at me constantly. These thoughts still continue to this day but they are NOT as loud as they once were and I punch walls less.
I’ve never actually talked to anyone about these thoughts. For as long as I can remember, I’ve felt different, stupid, unworthy of other’s love, I don’t fit in, I’m boring and the list goes on…I just didn’t like myself. But why this negative self-talk? Is that depression talking? Is that who I am?
I did try taking pills once only to stop myself and reach out to my mom. She saved me that night. I am forever grateful to her. I’ve been fighting those thoughts for 16 years, numbed my antidepressants. My most recent attack wasn’t that long ago. My fist found that concrete wall to numb those voices, in a small bathroom, in a foreign country. What should have been a happy time; my inner voice had other plans. People asked how the trip was and all I can remember is that small bathroom sitting on the floor wishing I was no more. I think of depression as waves in an ocean. That night I was at the top of that wave and it took forever to crash even weeks. I made it though, yet again!!!
Few people know of my struggles with depression. I am always surprised to find this out as I feel like I have a flashing neon sign hanging over my head saying “Mentally ill”. Those inner voices are quieter these days and I thank my inner ego for that. When they do come back I am ready to save myself again, knowing I’ve been saving myself with every wave I’ve been on for as long as I can remember.
I’ve been fighting the darkness most of my life…one day at a time…from the darkness to the light here I come.