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The High School Memories I’ll Never Have Thanks to Depression and Anxiety

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About six years ago, I was diagnosed with severe anxiety. Things got harder and harder. As the years passed by, I was diagnosed with severe depression. Things were getting worse by the day. It got harder to get out of bed in the morning.

I started to struggle with everyday things, one of them being school. At school, I was always anxious. From sitting in class, to sitting at the lunch table. Always. It got to the point where I missed school two to three of the five days of the week. My work and grades were hurting, and I just wasn’t living up to my full potential.

About a quarter of the way into my sophomore year, I started a program called Homebound, where a teacher brought all my work to my house and helped me with it there. I thought things would instantly be easier.

Yet, I was wrong. My work piled up. I barely finished the 10th grade with good grades. When 11th grade rolled around, my doctor, who was in charge of signing for the Homebound, had ordered me to go back to school.

I tried it. About a month in, it got to the same point, and I couldn’t do it anymore. So I started homeschool, which I thought was a gift from God. I didn’t have to get up early. I wasn’t on anyone’s schedule, and it was a lot better than public school. My anxiety levels were lower and still are now that I’m into my senior year.

I thought I’d never ever miss public school. Yet, now I’m starting to realize that I’ll never get to experience some of the things I never realized would have such a big impact on me. Things you tell your kids or grandkids about like prom or that feeling of “I did it” when I walk across the stage. I’ll just receive my diploma in my mailbox.

I’ll never get to play any sports, be on any academic teams or honor rolls for my senior year. I’ll never get to be a part of any clubs. I can just watch from afar as my friends enjoy their teenage years. I have no high school stories. Even at 17, I’m feeling the pain of not being able to experience all that high school has to offer.

From me to you, don’t let mental illness control you. Don’t let it stop you from doing the things you love. Because of anxiety and depression, these are the things I will never get to experience.

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Image via Thinkstock.

Originally published: January 3, 2017
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