As I sat down to write another blog post this morning I started by entering the title as “7 Summer Must Haves”. I planned to keep my third post on my new blog light-hearted and fun with my favorite items ranging from Arbonne products to bathing suits. I sat for over an hour typing and deleting over and over again only to realize it was time to write about something that has been on my mind for awhile now (sometimes I wonder what Jesus is layin’ on my heart ya’ll because this stuff can get personal and ugly).
So here we are to talk all things depression & anxiety.
My thoughts were like this, are you reaching to deep? Are you really going to post another problem of yours on the internet? And I also imagined the reactions of everyone reading this thinking to themselves “this girl has a LOT of issues”. (If you’re not a long time follower I’ll fill you in to a post on my old blog that discussed my battle with an eating disorder, yikes)! I thought to myself maybe I do have a lot of issues, could I really be as dark and twisty as Meredith Grey? Jesus must have a purpose for this one D and I decided in that brief moment that I would not only listen to Jesus and start writing but the issues I want to write about are the ones I don’t think are talked about enough. While I could have easily shared my list of summer must haves with you, I think those are the things we get bombarded with all the time. C’mon, you know all the ads we see on a daily basis endorsed by our favorite celebs. But, the things we don’t get to read about is being a twenty something year old girl who struggles with anxiety and depression. We don’t read about not having the strength to get out of bed sometimes. We definitely don’t read about the relationships we lose when we feel miserable about ourselves. The things that matter to me aren’t all the outside “stuff”, it’s more about making connections with you. You are the friend I want to reach, you are the reason I pour my heart out on this online diary of mine.
I’ll start by saying that I have been affected by both anxiety and depression at different points in my life. The depression stemming from the anxiety caused by food, things I thought about myself, things I thought people thought about me, school, work, and the list goes on and on. These were my triggers, and if you suffer from either or both depression and anxiety yours probably look a little different. I think there is a lot of stigma around mental illnesses and honestly that stinks. It stinks because this stigma causes people to not reach out and seek help. It causes embarrassment and shame in so many who are affected. I know this because I have been there and I lived it for most of my early adulthood. Last year I found myself at my lowest of lows, full of self-hate, negativity and poor me’s. I felt trapped in this pit of self destruction and I really wasn’t sure I was ever going to get out. I truly believed every negative thing I could about myself, I wasn’t good enough, pretty enough or just enough in general.
I didn’t promise this post to be a pretty one right? I know that this all sounds terrible, but it was my truth, and I know for some of you, it might be yours to.
After months and months of weekly counseling I was able to work through this depression and a lot of my anxiety. A year later and I will say that my life has completely changed. I have learned to love myself which has enabled me to love others. I have learned that food is good, and this girl loves to eat. I have learned not to take everything so seriously and to have fun. Life is short, and there is no time to waste being miserable.
There are a few things I will always advocate for, counseling, friends & family, self-love, and Jesus Christ himself. Without those four things I know I would not be where I am today.
A big thank you to my mom who supported me through everything (you da best ever). To my friends who made me laugh and smile and ultimately remember who I am. To an amazing counselor who made me cry and told me the truth I needed to hear “people aren’t thinking about you half as much as you think they are”. Last but definitely not least to the big man upstairs for his unconditional patience & grace.
If you are where I was know that you are not alone & that you are worth the fight to pick yourself up out of bed and seek help. Your happiness will always be something worth fighting for. Most importantly know that you are loved, not where you think you should be or where you have been, but exactly where you are right now. God meets you in your brokenness, in your tears, and he is there every time you need him.
“Be still” psalm 46:10
My love goes out to anyone who made it through this post.