“I’ve lived with anxiety my entire life. I remember as a child, having panic attacks when my parents would introduce me to new people. I would cry, get angry, and in turn, they would punish me for being “rude”. Of course, there was no way they could have known then that I had a mental illness.
Once I grew into a teenager, depression decided to join the party, along with a toxic group of friends who belittled me for being “quiet” and “weird” I just accepted the fact that I didn’t fit in.
In high school, I discovered that I had a passion for the arts. Theatre was my outlet of choice. I finally found some friends who didn’t treat me like I was an outcast that they were taking pity on.
Once we graduated, I was back to square one. Everyone moved off to start a new life and I was so alone that I found it impossible to leave my bed most days. The panic attacks came daily and the depression would keep me up at night. My mom said getting a job would help me feel accomplished or give me the push I needed.
Since working and going to college full time, I have discovered my limits. I have found that I am not meant for a 9-5 Monday through Friday routine, I am supposed to do something more.
I took up yoga and meditation for the anxiety. The panic attacks are now weekly and my depression takes breaks now for days and weeks at a time.
I have never been on medication for my illness because it scares me to think about being dependent on a pill. I would rather depend on myself. I’ve started blogging and practicing yoga every day.
I feel as if my purpose has finally been realized and my mental illness cannot hold me back any longer. There will be bad days, I know that, but as long as I don’t let those days define my life, I know I will be happy.”
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