I could fill novels with all the time I lost, the wasted youth I let slip, like water through my fingers. There’s a pain you don’t know of yet when you’re ‘battling depression’ – although I wasn’t battling. I let my depression wash me away. The pain is felt years down the road, when you are looking back on everything it stole away from you.
I didn’t know of this pain yet, or even consider the consequences my actions would someday bring. In the moment, all I cared about was ‘not being’. With every rejected phone call or IM I left ignored, I gave deeper into my depression. When you feel empty with or without people around, you begin to prefer the latter.
Being an introvert, by nature I was always fine with being alone. I found myself comforted by the four walls that understood my incapability to interact normally with other human beings. I clung to my solitude like it was air to my lungs. I didn’t know it was drowning me.
When you look back, at first, you’ll hate yourself. You’ll blame yourself for being so uninterested in everything, and missing out on the richness and liveliness of all the adventure and knowledge you crave now. There are opportunities that I will never get back, and it’s still the hardest thing to let go of.
Over time, you’ll learn to stop holding a grudge. You’ll realize it wasn’t entirely your fault. And this is where healing begins.
When I look back now, I don’t hate myself. But my heart still breaks. I was supposed to be having the time of my life. But it was stolen from me. All that’s left is what can never be. And I’ll live my life like they say to, knowing what I know now. Or at least I’ll try.
The greatest thing I have taken away from my fight with depression, is the ability to help others through their pain. I know how important it is to hear: I understand. I care. I’m here. This is my virtual hug and message to you. If you’re battling depression right now, there’s a pain that you don’t know about yet. This is your warning. Don’t let depression steal your life away.