I sincerely cannot remember a time in my life where depression and anxiety hasn’t followed me like a huge raincloud tethered to my throat.
I can be a bit overly dramatic, so let me simplify. I’ve always been the most melancholy and uncomfortable person I know. From as far back as I can remember being fully self aware I walked through my life as a gaping wound.
I’ve always been overly emotional and easily hurt. Had a hell of a time connecting with people in my young life because to me the things they were so concerned about just didn’t fucking matter.
- In kindergarten I was made fun of and avoided for my long tangly hair that hadn’t been cut in far too long and my ever-fashionable monochromatic sweatsuits from Walmart that were the only clothing we could afford at the time. Mind you, I didn’t know branding existed. I didn’t know these things mattered. I learned quickly.
- A girl who I’d literally done nothing to sneered down her nose at me and promptly spread lies around school that my younger sister and I had lice. People viewed me as unclean, unfashionable, and quiet.
- ‘Cool kids’ would use the guise of wanting to be my friend to get me to do things or help them with their schoolwork. I wasn’t pretty. I wasn’t girly. My hair needed to be brushed, but I was smart.
- In the third grade, I am frightened by my parents shouting at one another. My mother storms out of the house. My father calls her childish, and chases after her. My sister and I are left alone in the house, on our ugly brown floral couch, unable to understand what was happening. We walk next door to my grandmother’s house. Dad eventually walks up the yard and is crying. My grandmother holds him while he sobs. No one will tell me what is happening. I eventually take his giant fingers in my little hand and lead him away. We sit. I ask him whats wrong. He tells me my mom is leaving. (He didn’t explain at the time but the long and short of it is that she’d been cheating on him with an eighteen year old boy, and was leaving my father for him. She packed her bags that day and left. My abandonment issues began on this day.)
- In the fifth grade the boy I liked gets fed up with my gentle teasing ( I do believe I called him sweet pea) and ties into me with such vitriol as I’d never seen in my young age. Telling me that I was indeed, a literal pile of shit.
- My father starts dating a hateful shrew of a woman, who will later become my stepmother. We do not get along. She throws all of our furniture away and moves hers in. She is on a power trip. She lies to get us in trouble with our father almost constantly.
- In highschool, I am kissed by a member of the same sex. My world comes tumbling down as I realize I’m not, nor have I ever been straight. I keep quiet. I write in my journal. Stepmother sneaks and reads my journal and confronts me, asking if I am gay. I tell her no. Which is true. I now identify as pansexual and queer.
- Every single boy I like has a crush on one of my skinnier, prettier friends. This is pretty much just an accepted part of my young life. I’m never the one they want. I’m just the fat, ugly friend they have to put up with and endear themselves to in order to get close to the hot girls.
- I hold onto my virginity like it is my singlemost prized possession. I keep it all the way through highschool.
- I reconnect with my mother. She’s amazing to me because where my father and the shrew are strict, she isn’t at all. She doesn’t talk to me like I’m a baby. She treats me like an equal. I move in with her the day after graduating highschool. (I later realize how much of an unhealthy mess she is, promise. It took hiding lots of affairs from her then-husband and seeing that she prioritizes getting baked over running water and vermin prevention in the house, but hey, I eventually caught on yeah?)
- I have a crush on a boy who I met at my senior prom. He leads me on for a year. One night I finally get to kiss him after all the waiting, there was absolutely no chemistry. At all. I move on.
- I meet someone. It was a boy, but he was so damn androgynous and feminine looking that I wasn’t sure he was a boy at first. I thought he was beautiful. He becomes my first serious relationship. We give each other our virginity. As far as deflowering stories, I can’t complain. Mine is sweet in that cheesy after-school special kind of way, but its what I needed. We resolve to only ever be with one another. It takes five and a half years for me to let go of this ideology and realize that I’ve outgrown the relationship. I sob for twenty minutes as I drive away from the house we lived in together.
- I am single, and decide to try casual dating/sex. I sleep with a vocalist in a band, a married neuroscientist, and a woodcarver. Went on a few dates with a fellow stoner but all we did was get high and watch movies on the dates. I was also pursued by a couple looking for a girl to sleep with. I politely declined.
- Woodcarver was a rebound. Mega-rebound. He begins to fall for me and sends a threatening email to the married neuroscientist. I am angry. I never speak to either of them again. It is around Christmas. I am sad, but pretend to be happy.
- After the holidays I stop pretending to be happy. Spend most of my time online and ignoring actual other human beings. I meet another man. I tell him I don’t want anything serious. He doesn’t either. Our first phone call he rushes off the phone, later telling me a girl showed up to his house alone and drunk and wearing no panties. In trying to comfort her the most awkward kiss in history happens. I debate never speaking to him again, because I’m sick of people and their bullshit in general.
- He calls me and profusely apologizes. Explains further. It was a friend whose boyfriend had hit her. She was inebriated and scared and upset. Kiss was a mistake. I give him another chance.
- We fall in love. Hard. I start to visit him weekly. His family is strange, but they make me laugh.
- I get my driver’s license at the ripe old age of 27 and move to live with him in his mother’s attic the next day.
- His mother has cancer, and its going to kill her. Couple years in and she becomes more and more unable to do things for herself. She has a longterm boyfriend who’d become her carer in this amount of time.
- Longterm boyfriend packs his shit one weekend and leaves. She has no carer. I have no job. I decide to be her Home Health Aide. I commit to caring for my partner’s dying mother. It is to this date the singlemost difficult thing I have ever done.
- We have scares. She’s says her goodbyes before each hospital ER visit in case this is the end. Its heartbreaking and emotional.
- She gets too sick to be at home. We have to take her to a nursing facility. Boyfriend feels immsense guilt. She makes him feel worse. We literally had no choice. Her cancer eats through an artery and the nurses find her in a puddle of blood and excrement. It takes 14 units of blood to stabilize her. She makes it.
- The doctor gives her two more months to live. She makes it nine more from that time. Steadily deteriorating. More and more miserable. We spend beyond our means to try and make her comfortable. She dies the day before her son’s birthday. We are left with a decently staggering amount of debt. The house, which was hers, now belongs to her ex boyfriend.
- Ex boyfriend says we can stay as long as we want and pay the mortgage as rent. We agree to this, because we had no reason to believe anything would happen.
- I am depressed. I lose a job. We can barely make ends meet. We manage. I get a rather low-paying job cleaning offices.
- Ex boyfriend-now-homeowner calls and says he’s selling. That we need to be making arrangements. We can’t afford to stay where we are. There are strange people traipsing through what we’d made our little home and safe haven. There are eventually offers. We had thirty days to be out. We were promised a portion of the selling price. We got nothing.
- Partner and I move back to my hometown, where all of this fucking bullshit started. Literally living with my grandmother. I get a job that is physically killing me. I keep saying we’re going to get an apartment. Its been six months. I’ve yet to look. Partner doesn’t understand why I’m depressed.
- Partner is disabled. This is sincerely something I was mindful of from the very beginning of out now 6 year relationship. I try not to but sometimes I feel resentful about having to work myself half to death for us to live.
- I work 12 hour shifts, with 6 hours of sleep between each shift. I feel super disconnected from reality.
- I try to set goals but don’t feel particularly passionate or hopeful about any of them.
I tend to work in lists because they’re tidy. These are just a few of the things in my life thus far that’ve shaped me into the broken mess of a person I am today. I feel as though I don’t know how to be okay anymore. Content is what I strive for because happiness feels so out of reach for me.
If you sat through this word-vomit (likely with typos galore because I’m not post-editing) I applaud you. There are a few things I didn’t list that will likely have posts of their own and I might explore each bulletpoint listed at a deeper eventually. To keep myself and my mind busy.