It is always interesting when people say they know me. I say that because I barely know myself. I see myself as a person that is evolving but never going to know everything about myself.
Often, people get caught up in the act that I am okay. That nothing bothers me. I am good. Or they are wrapped up in the things I did or said, whether good or bad. Interesting enough, those things are irrelevant.
If you really knew me, you would know it is hard for me to show my emotions or share my thoughts or feelings. Many people look at me and perceive that I am shy, which may more true, depending on the situation.
But the reality is I am a fantastic actress. I know the right thing to say, so you don’t see the internal battle I have with depression*. I started developing symptoms of depression when I was 11 years old. It has been something that I have grown accustomed to being there every day. A familiar relationship that filled me up daily with self-hatred, suicidal thoughts, and questioning my existence.
Its nothing short of a miracle to still be here, but every day after that realization is a choice to no longer pretend to be okay but to take the necessary steps actually to be okay.
The thing is, if you really knew me, then you would know the more that I try to hide, the more I stand out. That the pain I endured, I use as fuel to help others believe that they matter and that they can make it.
I don’t know if I will ever reach the point that I will fully be okay, but I do know every day I expose the truth about myself, I begin and continue to heal. Until the day that depression no longer has an ounce of space in my existence.
*The reason that I do not state having depression in this post is because of something that I ave been working on with my therapist. Depression is not my identity. It is something that I have symptoms of, but working on to manage.