Before and After Depression
Hi EMMPIRE <3
Halloween was the 3rd birthday of my mixtape, Burning In The Dark, which I wrote about my battles with suicide/depression.
I wanted to share some thoughts from over here, on the other side of that battle. It's a little heavy so if you're not in the mood, feel free to exit this blog : )
For me, suicide used to make SO MUCH sense to me. I was chronically, deeply, depressed from age 12 to 21. That’s a long time. And I was TIRED. Not just tired like “I need some sleep.” Tired like, soul-tired. Spirit-tired. Hope-drained-tired. Tired-of-trying-so-hard-tired. Empty-in-every-way-tired.
And TBH, the only thing that comforted me was this sense of relief I got from imagining what it would be like to just, not exist. To not feel tired. Because not feeling anything seemed way better to me then hurting all the time.
I was trying SO hard. I thought I had tried everything. And after all that fighting, I was too soul-tired to even bother continuing to try. Do you know what I mean?
If you can relate, ILYSM. And I FEEL you. It’s so hard.
So what changed?
There was this thing that happened in my brain.
One day, in the middle of one of my invasive suicidal thoughts, this one, still, small thought crossed my mind.
The thought was this:
this is not my forever?
I could actually get better?”
To me, at the time, this idea was totally revolutionary. To someone “normal” it’s sort of a “duh!” but to someone really sick, it’s not so obvious.
Because the power suicide had over me was rooted in the belief that my story was over.
**That's why I put that word of hope at the end of "Burning In the Dark" that says "I know you think your story is OVER, but it's just the BEGINNING." I really put that in the song because I needed it. I needed to hear it. I needed to try to believe it.**
And finally, I let myself believe, that maybe, I could get better.
Believing that one thought saved my life.
I decided to believe that it was possible to get better.
It wasn’t some fairy tale. It could actually happen for me. And little by little, the grip that the idea of suicide had on me was loosened.
Someone asked me what to tell their partner when he was struggling with mental health. I hate giving advice because it can be so insensitive. But I just told her to tell him,
Allow yourself to believe that it is possible to heal, and that it happens every day, and it can happen for you.
Hopelessness is the worst.
Inviting that one hopeful thought into my mind was the beginning of finding my way out of despair and into healing.
That tiny ray of hope led me to make a series of small, concrete decisions that I didn't have the strength to make before I had that thought.
Slowly but surely, I started taking probiotics and loads of supplements. I started believing that it was my brain CHEMISTRY that was off, not my heart or my inherent worth. I stopped being mad at myself for not being able to just "get it together." I started thinking more about how to alter my brain chemistry and less about how powerless I felt. I started doing affirmations out loud to myself when I felt weak to try to change my subconscious beliefs about myself and the world around me. I dove deep into my trauma and tried to look at it through a lense of self-love and forgiveness. And finally, this is a big one - I got to the point that I could go to the gym. If you have been deeply depressed, you know what a massive battle that is to conquer.
& I’m so glad I stuck around to see that the darkest part of my story wasn’t the way the story ended. I’m NOT perfect, but I’m actually… genuinely… overall, definitely, a zillion times BETTER. And I’m happy.
TBH, if I stop taking my supplements, I crash hard and fast. My thought life takes a nose dive. I still have to do loads of affirmations, and meditate, and try to calm TF down a LOT in my day to day life.
But I'm a million times better then I was.
I’m glad I’m alive. And for a long time, I NEVER thought that could happen.
So I’m here to tell you that if you are depressed, how you feel right now is NOT your forever.
Life gets better. Situations get better. Your brain gets better. And you can get better. And I love you SO much.
I don’t know what will work for you. And I wouldn't dare try to tell you how to fight your battle.
But I just wanted you to know, from a friend who has come out on the other side...
You can get better. It’s actually, for real, possible. And it’s totally worth the fight. I promise.
Keep fighting, warrior. You’re closer to winning than you think.
If you want to talk more or know some of the practical steps I took that helped me, or just want to vent, please don’t hesitate to DM me. @EMMinRealLife.