2018…you beautiful, difficult, heart breaking and loving year. It’s been real. A year full of triumphs, success, heartache and loss too. This time last year I said 2018 was going to be my year, and I truly believe it was. This past year I pushed myself to go out of my comfort zone…quit my job and got a new job. Applied for university, got accepted and started attending university. That last sentence just simply blows my mind. I’m achieving my goals, whether they be big or small. I’m moving towards being the best version of myself and it’s the most satisfying feeling.
Although this year has been quite amazing, life handed me some intense losses. Losses I will never understand or would even imagine that I’d have to face. I had two major heartaches this past year and those two broken pieces of my heart will never be the same.
2018 I learned that people still don’t understand that mental illnesses are real and this frustrates me more than I can put into words. I had to continuously verify and prove that I have my illness and that it is real. I was faced with questions like why I had so many doctors appointments, why I missed class and why I would rather stay in than go out. People wonder why I’m so tired…the honest answer is not only am I fighting myself, I’m fighting the stigmas from people who still don’t understand. So is my sister, one day she was walking on campus and going to class with Lexi because she was already having a rough day to begin with. Lexi had her service dog vest on and a group of boys walked past them and one said, ‘there’s one of those “stress” dogs…’ and then they laughed. Talking about it now still makes me livid.
The amount of crap both her and I have faced from ignorant people who just assume things is unbelievable. And people wonder why people hide their illness! Well why would you want to be open and honest about the thing that scares you the most when you’ve seen others get ridiculed and questioned? Why would you want to share your story when you know you’ll be judged? Why reach out when you don’t know how others will react? THIS NEEDS TO CHANGE.
As you can tell by reading this I’m pretty open and honest with my battle. Because I know how lonely it gets, I know what it’s like to have the weight of the world on your shoulders and you feel like you’re going to fall. I know what it’s like to crumble when someone asks “are you okay?” or when you cry and don’t even really know why. I’ve been on the medication rollercoaster…the withdrawal and side effects SUCK. I know what it’s like to be that girl who gets invited to things but doesn’t show up. I know what it’s like to lose friends because they don’t understand. I know the battle of living with depression and anxiety. All this crap that people like me face, makes me want to work harder at ending the stigmas. It makes me want to stand up for people who still suffer in silence. No one should have to face this alone.
If you’re reading this and fighting a similar battle, remember that I believe in you. No matter what your illness tells you.
If you’re reading this and supporting a loved one who is fighting a similar battle, THANK YOU. It’s not an easy task and we appreciate all you do.
If you’re reading this and want to help me change the conversation around mental illness, reach out! Share my blog. Have a conversation with me, I will talk about this for days!
Sending all my love and conquering mind madness, one day at a time.