“I doubt he/she is depressed…. they just want attention.”
That was me. I had developed this dismissive and quite frankly bloody ignorant opinion of Depression. It’s not that I didn’t believe depression didn’t exist or any mental illness for that matter. I just believed it only happened to other people and that ‘these people’ were walking around like zombie’s constantly, never smiling. Of course deep down I had a sneaky suspicion that actually the doomed feeling I woke up with some days, was more than just a general sadness. So I guess you could say this attitude was a result of me completely wanting to protect myself and god forbid ever actually acknowledge feeling ‘weak’ sometimes.
Instead of speaking to someone and confronting the issue, exercise became my medication… still is. In my late teen’s I would exercise every day, so I could feel better for the rest of the day. It started off as 10 minutes running flat out on a treadmill to the point I’m at now… half marathons, spinning classes, endurance walks.
If I don’t exercise, I get anxious, irritable and I’m pretty vile to be around.
I didn’t actually address my mental wellbeing until very recently and this was only because I was forced to. Last year I got my heartbroken and felt I’d reached rock bottom. Being the very stubborn and private person that I am, I pushed and pushed myself through each day until Christmas came. During the festivities, when everyone was having fun with loved ones, I felt completely overwhelmed with life.
I’m still in the midst of it all, but I’m trying as hard as I can to embrace the helpful resources available and take each day at a time. I’m on medication now to get me through this challenging patch in my life.
I thought I was being strong before, by soldiering on without help, but I truly believe that my biggest mistake was suffering so long in private. One of my biggest regret’s is not being brave enough to explain what I was going through, during the lows, to the people who loved me and instead pushing them away.”
Themanicyears is still looking for people to share their stories! If you have an experience with Mental Health you would like to share on here, please do not hesitate to drop me an email on firstname.lastname@example.org, and get your story published on our “Sharing Stories” feature.– M.