On Fighting My Depression
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It’s two weeks into January, and the Christmas tree in the living room is slowly gravitating toward our wooden floors. Fallen pine needles sit in a one-inch circumference around the willowy tree. The pine smell still illuminates the air, though, making me happy.
The day we got the tree was the second week of December. I remember. It was the day I cried to my mentor over the phone.
In a moment of extreme anxiety and depression over the circumstances of my life, I stopped listing them out loud to swallow the lump in my throat and heave the tears coming from my eyes. It was then that my mentor told me something I would never forget.
“Regan, I hear the tears that you are crying, and that’s okay, but you need to remember to keep moving forward.”
She was right. Every single time she has said it within the last three years, she has become wiser in my eyes.
In the years previously, I had been known to lay in bed and sulk in my sorrows, letting numbness, fatigue, and the knot in my stomach take over my body. All of this created by the battle in my head over the years from unresolved issues from my past, and just perhaps my body’s chemistry. Life has never given me a red carpet of dreams. In my mind back then, if I didn’t wake up from my sleep, it would have been fine. Today, I take up my mentor’s advice about “moving forward.”
To keep moving forward with the job hunt.
To keep moving forward with cultivating the relationships I do have.
To keep moving forward when I do not know where I am going to sleep at night.
To keep moving forward when I want to cry.
Maybe it is because as my mentor has also mentioned, it’s okay to grieve.
When life sucks, it’s inhuman to cover the wounds that life has left on us, so it’s our job to stay as open and honest as possible with others, even in the most challenging times.
This is why my roommates and close friends have gotten an ear full of the events happening in my life over the years. Open communication and grievances has helped relieve tension built up inside me that could exploded in a moment of desperation or loneliness.
For thirteen years now, I have had fought anxiety and depression, which is more than half of my lifetime. In the years I have struggled, I have come to find moving forward is all I can do, and counting my endless blessings is how I cope on days I would rather lay in bed and do nothing.
And I can thank God for my mentor who has reminded me of this simple truth: Remember to keep moving forward.
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