you may think this is going to be a list of how i almost killed myself about 10 times, or how i was stuck in the psychiatric ward but no, it isn't.
1. Depression taught me to rely on God. I found my faith and realized that my God is bigger than my mental illness. I found light even in darkness and learned to lean on Him more than I ever have, and I am so grateful.
2. Depression taught me to stand on my own two feet. I learned very early into my diagnosis that I had to save myself because no prince or princess charming was going to come in a pumpkin carriage and sweep me off my feet and no fairy godmother is going to flick her wand and take my illness away. It was my battle to fight.
3. Depression showed me the people who loved me for me. It was quite easy to figure out the people who wanted something from me and the people who wanted me. It was heartbreaking to realize the truth, but better late than never hey? Cutting off everyone who only chose to be a part of my life for their selfish needs has done me more good than any other choice I've made thus far, I am so happy.
4. Depression taught me to be kind. Being thrown into what felt like the deepest pits of hell taught me what pain truly feels like. I had always known that mental illnesses were torturous, but experiencing it first hand is a whole new level and I wouldn't wish it upon my worst enemies. I learned that everyone is suffering and we all fight battles, and how important it is to recognize that the person next to you may be going through hell and just chooses to be silent about it. Be kind. It may not mean anything to you, but it may mean the world to the person next to you.
5. Depression taught me that I am a strong *******. It tried to break me, over and over again. It put thoughts into my head and told me I wasn't good enough and I would never be, good enough. It told me I had to harm myself to feel things and it told me I would be better off dead. It told me I wasn't worth of love, happiness, kindness - I wasn't worth anything. It told me to wreck myself because I meant nothing anyway. It told me to make decisions that only made me feel worse because at that point - I would have done anything to take the pain away. But here I am today, able to write all of this without shedding a single tear. Because I am strong. I suffered, but I survived. And nobody will ever, be able to take that away from me.
6. The last, and most important lesson. I've always wanted to change lives, make a difference. Depression taught me that I didn't need to change 200 lives at once. I didn't need to change the world when I was 18 years old. All I needed to do was listen to someone, give someone a hug. Talk to someone when they needed a friend. I was changing the world, even if I didn't realize it. And I will continue to do it.
To everyone who's wondering, I'm off anti-depressants now. The fear of relapse constantly does bug me, but my will to survive exceeds everything else. I am a fighter. And so are you.