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To the Person With Depression Who's Missing Your Spark

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It’s hard when people don’t understand. They never seem to understand. They make comments like, “You’re OK,” or “Why are you sad all the time?” They see you smiling and ask, “How could you be depressed?” They see Facebook and Instagram photos and say, “Your life is so great. Stop being sad.”

Then, the same phrase that has so many variations, “You’ll be better tomorrow. Depression is just a mind set. Get over it already.” Then, there are the nasty remarks like, “Anxiety is fake. Get over your fears,” “You’re selfish for wanting to die,” “Go to a mental home,” or “Take some happy pills and just be better already.”

Those things have all been said to me, and I bet many have been said to you before, too. It’s like a stab to the heart, and then, just when you thought your heart couldn’t be broken anymore, it shatters into a million little pieces.

I’m not going to pretend this is easy. I know it is hard. If I could, then I would reach my hand through this screen and give you my hand to hold and squeeze when times get rough. If you needed someone to wipe your tears or hold you when you felt like you had no one else, then I wish I could be that person. The hardest part is the loneliness and despair you feel.

Everything you do, everything you try, is never enough. There is this hole that just keeps getting bigger and bigger inside of you. You try to bury it with all the dirt you dug out, the pills, partying, hooking up, drugs, drinking, self-harming, overeating, under eating or sleeping all the time.

You beg and beg for help, but then you remind yourself you are a burden. So you decide not to seek help. You just wish someone would see right through you and see all the broken pieces. You wish they would just look into your eyes and suddenly see and understand the pain and despair you feel every day.

It’s hard to see the people around you loving life and loving themselves. Constantly people tell you to love yourself. Two words that at face value seem so simple. Yet, they are so hard to accept. “Love yourself?” Pssh who does that? I am unworthy, broken, hated, undeserving, emotional, the world’s worst human.”

You say this again and again, and you believe it. The depression, that damn depression, backs you up every single time, but I don’t see you that way. We have to break the cycle and stop lying to ourselves! The way I see it, you are more than your illness. You are more than words could describe, and you have every right to love yourself even if you don’t feel it now.

I am here and able to write these words because no matter how dark my days got, there was one little spark that made me stay. That little spark was hope. Hope for life, a life that one day I could look back on and love. A life where I knew that all the pain and fighting was worth it to make it to this day. There is hope, and that hope gives you something to believe in when you see nothing else.

You will find this hope and learn to be grateful for this experience. You will realize that this pain and hardship, this hell, has made you the person you are. It has taught you more than anyone or anything could teach you about the gift and meaning of life.

One day, I put myself in a position where life was too hard for me to deal with. I was giving up and didn’t know what else to do. There was no point in living. I felt like a burden because life was hard for me, and I thought, in turn, I made it hard for everyone around me. At this moment, I was faced with two paths, one with a field of flowers, endless love, peace and happiness. The other path with mountains, the ups and downs of life. It was my choice to decide if I wanted to take the path to end my life now — or I could choose the one with the ups and downs. Though hard, the latter had great reward at the end. I chose the mountains. I chose life and you can too.

Someday, you will be able to stand on top of the metaphorical mountain that represents all the challenges you faced, and you will see your experiences, the good ones and the bad ones. You will see all the mountains, the ups and downs of life. However, this time, instead of seeing the mountains as a strenuous path to climb, you will start to see the beauty that it has lead you to. The beauty of where you are today.

You will be able to stand on this mountain now and see your accomplishments. You will see all the trees that supported you along the way. You will see the sun that sometimes disappeared and brought darkness, but each day, without fail, brought back the light. There will be the birds chirping around you and singing congratulations because you fought to keep climbing with each and every breath. You will see the clouds covering you and protecting you. Then, it will hit you with such clarity. You will realize you, yes you, are meant to be here on this planet. You are here to live and you can do it.

If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.

If you need support right now, call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. You can reach the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741.

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Image via contributor.

Originally published: November 4, 2016
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