Preface

“I think the saddest people always try their hardest to make people happy. Because they know what it’s like to feel absolutely worthless and they don’t want anybody else to feel like that.”

Robin Williams 1951-2014

There is also a thick layer of fear that has been helping make up excuses as to why I should just wait one more day to publish this. I’m not anyone particularly special that will be praised by the public for giving a voice to depression, addiction, and anxiety. For making it ‘ok to talk about.’ I am a mother, who has made countless wrong, dangerous, choices over the past 17 years. I am a friend who, while being genuine in my love, concern, and devotion for those I love, has been a screaming hypocrite. Begging friends to ask me for help whenever they need. Offering a pure, whole-hearted want to be someone they could come to, no matter what. Being almost hurt if I would find out, that for whatever reason, they had suffered alone. I never have wanted to be a burden to those around me. I have kept my pain, both mental and physical, mostly to myself, thinking I have been sparing the people that matter most to me unnecessary distress. I am just now learning and realizing how selfish this has actually been. If my loved ones didn’t come to me for these reasons, I would be heart broken. There could be a chance this is how some of my family and friend-family feel. This realization is somewhat hard for me to fully accept and believe, while at the same time, is something I feel awful about. I truly apologize to any of you reading this that have ever felt hurt that I haven’t opened up to you about these dark places in me. There has never been any intention to offend, only an intention of protection. The fear has been, and continues to be a real one; If people were allowed to explore behind the locked doors, they would surely regret wanting to walk through. The problem is, I have selfishly made that decision for them. Never cracking the door and allowing them to make their own choice. For this, and for many other things, I am genuinely sorry.

This has been a tumultuous few weeks. A literal roller coaster of emotions and events. In these posts, I hope to open up to those around me. To shed some light on why…well..why everything I guess. It’s shared also in hopes that if there is anyone out there that is suffering in silence, you know you are not alone. Depression, addiction, anxiety seem to be so much more common than I ever could have imagined.

Being in this recovery program has been so comforting. I have been able to be around others that understand me, listen to me, sympathize with me and refuse to run the other direction when shit gets deep. It has also helped me to open my eyes to the fact that I have been blessed with people my whole life, that, had I given them the chance, would have also mucked through the shit with me. For anyone reading this locked in your room of despair, refusing to answer the door in an attempt to spare others your problems, it is my hope you can also begin to realize that those who knock, desperately want you to let them in. You are not a burden, you are simply loved. And, for those who the door stays silent, my hope is that you find comfort in the words of this stranger, who loves you. I do not know you and we may never meet, but please feel, know, and allow yourself to accept my love and understanding. These rooms we choose to lock ourselves in begin eventually get too cold and uncomfortable to survive. Sooner or later, we have to get up, drag the heavy chains of pain, fear, despair, and walk out into the hall. Whether it is empty or not, we need to make it to the next door, the one with the light peaking through the cracks. There is no telling how long that hall will be. I’m positive it is different for everyone. I am barely out of my room, some of the chains seem to be caught up on something in the room I cannot see. But I continue to tug and yank, trying to dislodge it from whatever it holding on.

So, as this is read, by loved ones or strangers, I hope it is taken as it is meant; to be something that helps shed light on some struggles not easy to talk about. This is in no way a pity blog. I do not want sympathy. This is meant to hopefully help anyone out there, even if it’s one person, feel less alone in their struggles with depression and addiction. This is also a therapeutic journey for me. I realize that is a selfish reason to put all this out there, but right now, I need all the help I can get.

5 comments

  1. I’m so proud of you for making this step!! I know all too well about living with depression & anxiety..it’s been a constant battle. I have often wanting to put my own story out there; but, have not yet overcome the fear, so I truly admire your courage in doing so! You worded this so perfectly, exactly what I’d like to say myself. I’m sorry you’ve had to feel the pain. May you find peace in your soul, and know how much YOU matter!

  2. I love to see that you are writing about this. I want you to come to me when you need help. You have always answered my calls when I’m in need. I would love nothing more than to return the favor. Love you.

  3. Jen, I am proud of you! Your transparency through this difficult process is one of the greatest lessons you could give our son. Your strength and courage is inspiring. Know that you will always have my support. Thank you for being the amazing mother and person that you are!

  4. I’m not very good at understanding what anxiety and depression can do to a person; I’ve never had to face it. It’s just not part of my biology. I am, however, very good at loving my friends just as they are, whether I can totally understand them or not. This Preface has really re-sparked my curiosity of you and an excitement grows to truly get to know you better and be that support system standing by for whenever you’re ready or in need of it.
    I, like the others who have commented here (and I’m sure the silent readers), am also so proud of you. You’re so eloquent. I can only imagine how cathartic this must be for you.
    I love you, Jen. You HAVE always been that selfless friend. I’m glad you’re doing the “self” thing now – for you, and the many people who support your search of happiness.
    XOXO

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