I thought my life was over, I wanted to give up, and I didn’t think I could go on. I thought I knew who I was, but my whole self was being stripped away. I didn’t even recognize myself anymore. I didn’t feel cared for by anyone and my life was completely pointless at this stage of my life. So many questions rushed through my mind every passing minute of the day. How did I become so unhappy? What is my purpose in life? Why did I let myself become affected like this? What do I believe in? Will I ever smile again after these tears dry? I lived a normal life, so why did I feel so out of place?
I’ve suffered severe depression for about the last ten years, starting when my parents divorced. I often am asked how I felt about the divorce and I can never answer. I can’t answer not because it’s difficult to talk about or makes me sad, but I simply don’t remember what my experience it was like. My two older brothers and I had no idea what was going on during the divorce because our parent’s energy went towards getting their half of things. Since my brothers had each other to rely on and my parents were trying to get their own lives together, I felt neglected by my family. I became very independent, which led to pure loneliness. Nearly ten years of my life seized away because I refused to admit my depression problems to anyone. No one ever could tell any sign of emotion, I held it all inside.
Periods went by feeling satisfied with my life and other times I didn’t know if I would make it to the next day. My long-term boyfriend contributed to almost all my happiness until we broke up in January 2008. When I discovered he had been cheating on me for nearly two years my world came crashing down. I didn’t even know where to start my life again. My life was too caught up in his; I forgot I had my own. All my independence went astray because he controlled who I was. I wasn’t living my life for myself; everything was based off of him.
I needed change in my life; I needed guidance to seek help. Starting over was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. My counselor taught me the most valuable lesson I’ll never know; “Happiness isn’t a random occurrence of enjoyable experiences or moments; it’s a way of life.” I learned not to base my happiness off of someone or something else, but true happiness came from the inside and that eventually would reflect who I was on the outside.
I believe everyone deserves to be happy. I believe life is about being a good person, making healthy lifestyle choices, and giving back to those before you. My life has changed drastically since I re-found myself. I will never forget how depression felt because I never want to go back to that state of mind ever again. Too much time and energy was spent being dissatisfied with my life and focused solely on the bad to realize all the good I have going for me. I have a wonderful, caring, and supportive family. My best friends are amazing and cherished in my heart. I learned confidence is attractive; if I believed in myself others would too. I stopped chasing the things I didn’t have to spend more time being happy with the things I do have. I have a clear mind full of new insight. I fell in love with who Alison-Renee Wilson was again. I have one life, one chance to live, and I’m the only ‘me’ that I will ever have. I’ll always be the soft-spoken, shy, quiet girl doodling because of my crazy A.D.D, but I’ve gained the confidence I was lacking over the last ten years. I’ve struggled hard, but I finally believe my life is on the right path to success. Though my life is full of change; one thing will always remain constant, my happiness.
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