This is Me and I’m Not Ashamed Tomorrow will be a fresh start, another day to keep trying. Tomorrow there’s always a possibility of sunshine. Just keep trying. I try to tell myself this every day. Most of the time while crying so much it physically hurts. It seemed to come out of nowhere, like an invisible raging storm. It’s so hard to understand how my own mind can tear me down to shreds. It’s a never ending vicious cycle, the overwhelming sadness, emptiness, numbness, feeling trapped in your own mind that won’t slow down enough for you to keep up. How every small essential task you used to take for granted now feels exhausting to complete. An endless marathon of thoughts and feelings. The dark thoughts that seem so strong and real. You know for a fact most of it isn’t true and it won’t solve the problem but that doesn’t matter. Whatever you got to do to get out of this horrible pain. You’re feeling like you’re losing control of your mind. The feeling of being forcedly sucked into this black abyss of darkness, emptiness. The loss of control. Then the shame and guilt kick in. You hate yourself for not being able to control your mind, questioning what’s wrong with you, why can’t you get a grip? Why is this happening to me? I don’t have an awful life. I have no reason to feel this way. Why me?! The vicious cycle seems like it will never stop. A pain no one can see. I smile at everyone with such emptiness. I try to keep my life moving on like everything is fine. Every day is harder and harder. By the time it’s late afternoon I just want to sleep. I’m exhausted from my mind going a million miles a min and forcing myself to act “normal”. Does anyone know what really is normal? I’ve come to realize it is reality and facing it. It’s not what everyone sees online or social media, it’s not the smiling perfect faces and the family that has it all together. It is the people with faults and raw emotions growing in love. I’m slowly learning that depression and anxiety do not care who you are or what your life situation is. I have no reason to be ashamed. I didn’t lose my faith like some would say. This is actually happening to me. This isn’t just a down blue day. This isn’t something you can snap or talk yourself out of. I didn’t choose to be this way. This is real. So far I’ve been diagnosed with major depression, anxiety, OCD, PTSD and some other underlying causes. It’s going to be a long process but this is me. I’m not ashamed anymore about being on medication and talking to a therapist once a week. It feels amazing and liberating. Mental illness has a million faces and mine is one of them. I honestly don’t care anymore who knows and doesn’t. This is me! I got help thankfully in time. I didn’t want to be another statistic. It’s nice to know you aren’t alone but what is even sadder is how many people go through life without getting treatment. I’m sick of the stigma that comes from this. Just because I “don’t appear” to have issues doesn’t mean my feelings are invalid. I’m learning this is part of who I am now as I continue to grow in life. I’m going to embrace it and learn to cope. I don’t care anymore if people will judge me. It makes me sad for them and happy that I finally found the small flicker of light to guide me out of this darkness. My family has been my rock. As much as they experienced the external effects of my illness, they’ve supported me every step of the way. I would never wish this on anyone. You can and will be proud of yourself. Be mindful and live in the moment. Every day is a small step and a battle waiting to be won. It’s okay to have setbacks. Please get help and talk to someone if you feel this way. Don’t ignore it, thinking it will go away on its own. There is no reason to be ashamed. You didn’t chose to be this way but you can embrace it and grow from it. Every new day is a fresh start. Don’t give up. Share your story, message, poem, quote, photo or video of hope, struggle or recovery. By sharing your experience, you can let others know that they are not alone.