“I would wake up and try to recognize the good things in my days. I pinpointed what made me laugh or smile. It offered hope.”
I realized that I was dealing with depression
during my freshman year of high school. There wasn’t a trigger that I can recognize. I didn’t realize what was happening to me until it progressed.
I started realizing that I was different in certain ways. The way I approached certain things and people, my attitude, my work ethic. I was changing and kind of becoming a different person.
All I ever did was my homework at the time. And even though I did my homework, my grades started slipping. My GPA lowered, and I was tired all the time.
I didn’t want to put in any effort because I figured no matter what I did I’d just be stuck in this rut. I felt like a failure. School was always my number one priority and at that time I lost track of everything.
I figured I couldn’t reach my goals and there was no point in trying so hard to end up as nothing. I wasn’t determined, and I didn’t see myself persevering.
I only opened up to my close friends. I didn’t really want anyone to know but at the same time I did, so they were the ones I turned to.
I wouldn’t really want anyone else to know because they might ask the typical question: ‘how you can be depressed? you have a great life.’ But nobody could actually live what I was living and only my close friends would really understand why I was like that.
I talked to my friends all the time. They helped me as much as they could, and no matter what I felt or thought about myself, they would try and reassure me that none of it was true. But a lot of it, I did myself.
I started exercising. Running helped me a lot because it’d clear my mind and offer times of peace. I realized that the way I felt wasn’t my fault and that I wanted to overcome it.
One day, I literally woke up and said to myself: ‘enough is enough! you are going to work on yourself and live a good life.’ I built up a lot of strength. I would wake up and try to recognize the good things in my days.
I pinpointed what made me laugh or smile. And I started to think to that those moments would come again and again and again. It offered hope.
I’ve changed a lot. I like to say that I’ve become a lot stronger, and a lot better. I don’t want to sound too proud of myself, but I truly know I am strong.
I didn’t know my own strength back then; I didn’t think I had any. But with all of it, I came out okay. It helped me realize that I’m not alone like I always thought I was.
It changed me in the sense that I need to look at each day as a gift. And that any other hardship that comes up in my life, I can and will get past because before, I thought I was never going to make it. But now, I know I can get through anything.
I also connected a lot to my religion. I look to God and trust my faith much more.
I see things different than I did before it all happened. I see things deeper and more beautiful than I did before. And I’m proud of that.
I know I have a lot to offer to the world now and that I can work to become anything I want to.