After my recent video interview (link here to watch) with Mental Awareness Foundation I received a comment from someone saying that my interview was another "crappy inspiring video" they watched trying to find that light at the end of the tunnel, but there isn't one.... Now, I am not singling this person out because it was the first negative feedback I have received since launching this blog and I do not take offence at all. I wanted to let you know that I respect you and I get it! I used to be exactly like you. I never thought there was light at the end of the tunnel no matter how many times I searched for "inspiration" or watched Eat, Pray, Love. It was all bullshit... these people didn't know what depression was, they had never been through it, so why the hell are the pretending to have it and sell their stories. Watching these videos fuelled my anxiety and buried me further into unhappiness and depression.
Do you want to know what it took for my life to change?
Well, if you answered no... I don't care, I'll tell you anyway... It was when I was sitting under the story bridge (if your not from Brisbane, it's a bridge in the CBD where unfortunately too many people have taken their lives...thankfully now they have put suicide barriers up)... anyways I was sitting there for 5 hours or so, which was long enough to write and re-write my goodbyes 3 times... every time I read them back to myself I was trying to force myself to cry but I just felt numb... All I wanted to do was to feel some sort of emotion, anything else but numb... I hated that I could't feel anything anymore! I thought the only way to stop it was to end my life...
But something in me told me to turn on my car and drive away, as far away from that bridge as possible. Maybe it was all the unanswered questions I wrote in my goodbyes for someone else to somehow answer, or maybe I knew that someday I could answer those questions myself. I think deep down I knew that I didn't want to die, I just wanted it to stop. Which is why I was writing everything down, hoping that reading what was going on in my head would make me cry.... giving me sign to not give up. I know that I couldn't cry as much as I tried but I didn't give up! And I hate that I let myself get to that point in my life but I am also grateful. I call this day my Lana Del Rey- depressing but beautiful....why? Because in the darkest hours of my life I saw light. And ironically the silver lining to this day was that I found writing therapy.
So, after a few therapy sessions with a social worker I was ready to read my goodbyes. This time I cried and when I say cry, I mean like one of those ugly cry's... This day was also the day that I answered most of the unanswered questions that I was so desperately trying to answer, I finally felt emotions and this was the sign not to give up. In a way I feel like I tested myself (let me get this straight! Toying with the idea of suicide is not a game and was not the test!) the test was seeing what it took to make me get the help I needed and wanted so badly.
So yeah, I get it.... these "crappy inspiring videos" may seem like they are all the same, but I can assure you that I have been where you are... and still have my shitty days! And, I know that you can't see it now but I can promise you there is light at the end of that tunnel. It won't be on high beams straight away, it will be a very dim candle flame flickering at the end but the more you walk through your tunnel the brighter it will shine.... I have only tasted happiness and I may only be 60% through my tunnel, but everyday I am walking through it, knowing that the light is there.
So please don't give up.