Good evening Ladies and Gentlemen,
Thank you for joining me this cold December evening. As I sit in the kitchen of my parent’s house, I wonder where 2015 has gone. I suppose it has gone with the rest of the years, like faded photographs in the back pocket of my memory. While this year was significantly different in some ways, it was the same and harder in others.
If 2015 has taught me anything, it is this: I cannot keep running.
2014 taught me that I am more than I ever thought possible, and sometimes being more means being broken in ways I didn’t think I was whole. 2016 awaits, and in my fear, I begged to put more time and space between myself and the events of last year (forgive my vagueness, but these matters are too private for common knowledge).
So I ran to 2015 with arms spread wide, begging it to carry me to better places. And in someways it did.
In other ways, it drug me like a dog to my mistakes and rubbed my nose in everything I had done and everything that had been done to me.
I have mourned this year.
I mourned the little girl I lost through my adolescence. I mourned the teenager that learned rejection and lost hope. I mourned the hatred I learned for myself. I mourned the bitterness that burrowed into my soul like an un-welcomed rodent, feeding on my happiness. I mourned the adult who thought she had to know it all and have it all and be it all right now. I mourned the girl who believed she would never be good enough. I mourned the relationships and friendships that confirmed the fear that I am worth nothing. I mourned the missionary girl who drowned in a sea of broken people and circumstances that could never be fixed. I mourned the weeping girl, crying alone in an airport thousands of miles from home. I mourned the girl who lost “home” and still can’t really find it. I mourned what I was. I mourned what I did.
In mourning, I realized how lost I am, and I mourned that too.
I’m not sure how long it takes to heal from tragedy or the death of a soul. I’m not sure how to forgive the destruction and havoc broken and angry people cause. I’m not sure how to move on without the things that were wrongfully taken away. I’m not sure why some people are prone to more bad luck or more sadness than other people. I’m not sure what distinguishes the happy people from the sad. I’m not sure how long it takes to learn self-love after years of self hatred. I’m not sure how to develop the desire to live and lose the fear of being alive.
This year marks ten years that I have struggled with depression. There are days that are better than others, and there are days that seem worse than the best day in hell.
But as 2015 ends and 2016 begins, I realize that I want more better days. I want the awareness that I am worth better days. This year was hard, but I am grateful for it. I mourned. Now, I am ready to move forward.
So here we are. I’m not sure if there’s a magical formula. I think there probably isn’t. The belief that there’s some magical way to fix everything is probably what landed me here in the first place. I am learning to stand my ground in all that was past and all that is in me. In being lost, I am learning to find hope for a better future.
In truth, this post is written rashly, but I think this is best–I can’t go back now, can I?
This is my promise:
I will be here. I will be alive. I will do things differently. I will try new things. I will be braver than I ever have before. I will be honest. I will be vulnerable. I will be selfish, so I can be selfless later.
I don’t want to be depressed anymore. I don’t want to watch the world happen around me. I don’t want to be afraid of my own happiness. I don’t want to sabotage the good possibilities in my life. I don’t want to dwell on the things that once hurt me. I don’t want to hurt others. I don’t want to be angry.
I want freedom and joy. I don’t know what that will look like for me right now, but I know it will be mine and mine alone. I’m not attempting to make a formula for happiness, and I won’t be able to do exactly what anyone else has done either.
I just want to write a little and invite you to live life with me for the next year.
If you stick with me, perhaps we can learn something from one another. Follow along my journey. Root me on if you can. Give me a shove if I need it. And I’ll do the same whenever possible. Share your stories with me and feel free to share my stories with others.
Joy and happiness friends,