Hate

Hate is a word that I RARELY use, and let me explain why.

I hate myself. I hate myself so much that there is no hate left for anyone else.

I would give my life to save others in a heartbeat.

Giving up all my rights for someone else’s is not even a question in my mind.

Standing up for fair treatment for someone other than me is a common past time.

I volunteer, participate in walks, talks, and sit-outs, and give blood to the Red Cross on the regular.

Why?

Because I love everyone on this planet more than I could ever love myself.

I remember when I was a little girl and my family took a trip to Arizona to see our extended family. My mother cousin worked across the Mexican border as a translator (and something else I am sure).

We went to a small community he worked in where there were mothers with their children on the streets begging for anything, and giving everything they could to their kids.

I grew up in a small community in Northeast Nebraska where our homeless population is non-existant.

I had never seen anything like this before.

I remember crying and not being able to understand how people can just walk past them without giving them anything. I couldn't wrap my head around why their husbands would throw them out so selfishly.

I wanted to give them every last thing I had and I didn’t understand why my mom wasn’t giving me all the coins she had, so I could help them.

This was my first real taste hate and helping.

I hated the people for doing this and I wanted to help them change and help heal the pain they caused.

How could someone not be able to put themselves in someone else’s shoes.

How could someone be so selfish?!

I grew up and encountered many other cases where selfishness was the leading cause of hate and pain.

With all the negativity and pain that is taking place in today’s society, why can’t people put their pride and wants for the betterment of others?

I still struggle with this concept. I do take pride in my ability to understand other points of view, but I cannot understand hate and nor do I want to.

That is why I volunteer, march, and give blood. I don’t care if I am tired or if the needle hurts, if it can help someone else I am going to do it.

I will put anyone else’s needs above my own.

I would give both my kidneys if that meant saving someone.

I would give up my rights to guns if that would help stop mass shootings.

I want to get another degree in political science or law so that one day I can run for office and stand up for those who don’t yet have a voice.

Everyday, I have to silence the hate for myself.

So everyday, I love everyone else harder.

Forget the L's, I have A LOT of Wins.

It took me years to accept the fact that I will be living with a mental illness for the rest of my life. 

For the longest time, I though I was better. I thought I would never go back to that dark place. 

But time and time again, I woke up with those same dark thoughts.

Time and time again, I covered up my tears, scars, and pain with a smile and an obnoxious, awkward joke. 

But time and time again, I would end up right back where I said I would never be. 

Learning to live with depression and anxiety is a fight everyday, and it’s a fight that I’m winning. I have some HUGE L's in the record book, but the wins can outshine the losses if you let them.

It took me a long time to be ok with being on medication to keep me mentally stable. But now, I am ok with that. As long as I get to live and watch the people I love grow, then give me all the medications I need. 

It took me a long time to be ok with my past. But now I see that my past has beauty.

My scarred past is beautiful.

It may not be beautiful to others, but it is to me.

And no one can take that away.

 

 

You can never forget scars

Last night I was painfully reminded that I don't think like others. I was reminded that the reason of my actions is most often very different than others.

I also realized that it is very hard for me to talk about being truly vulnerable and even harder to explain why I am broken even when I appear so strong on the outside.

I informed my significant other last night that I am planning on tattoos covering my self-harm scars that I have on my inner arm.

He suggested laser removal to get rid of them and that he doesn’t like tattoos that are really visible.  

I said that I don't want to get rid of them, I just want to see the beauty that came out of what I went through, and be reminded to not go back to that dark place.

I won't be able to ever forget that I did those things to myself. No matter how much cream I put on them or lasers I let near them, I will always see the scar.

He said that he doesn't see a point because I am better now.

At that point I realized that he thinks it happened years ago, or even a decade ago when my first suicide attempt happened.

What he doesn't know is that it was less than a year ago.  The scars are recent.

He does realize that I am no better now than I was crying on the floor scratching my arm until I bled.  

I am still that person, and I always will be.

I have three tattoos thus far. Two very visible on my left arm, and one on my ribs.  

Each signify a time in my life that I otherwise would have missed if I would have succeeded with my suicide attempts.

From studying abroad where I randomly roomed with two other women who struggled with suicide attempts, to graduating to college and getting tattoos with my professor made mentor made friend, then to San Diego where I celebrated making to to see the point in my life where my parents dream of their three kids getting bachelor degrees did come true.

My tattoos remind me to keep going, that my life isn't done yet.

That even though there is a lot behind me, there is even more in front of me.

They remind me to NEVER forget that even though I can’t see my future sometimes, it is still there.

I spent this past year looking at these scars that are placed so close to my beautiful artwork on my body.

Since my mind won't tell me to keep looking forward, I need my body to tell me to.

Yesterday

Yesterday, I signed papers for disability accommodations at work.

I am 24, active, hardworking, and optimistic. But at the same time I am depressed, chronically ill, in pain, and hopeless.

I talked myself down from a panic attack as I sat at my desk, looked at the papers, and thought “How did I get here?”

Then after work, I made my usual trip to the wellness center attached to the hospital I go to. As I floated in the warm water pool, using breathing techniques to calm my muscles, it was hard to forget that I was the youngest (by thirty years or so) in that pool.  

One physical therapist was helping someone with what looked like an hip replacement, another with shoulder issues. Other people were just walking in the warm water to ease their joints and pains.

We were all there for the same reason. Myself, and all the people twice my age, were their because we were trying to maintain our health, even with all the complications our bodies throw at us.

As I floated in the deep end, staring at the ceiling, I kept thinking of what my life will be like in five years, ten years, or twenty-five years.

See, my life is different than I would have imagined it five years ago.

Yesterday, I realized that.

I would have never guessed that my nightstand would be covered with pill bottles, or that I sit in the shower more than I stand, or that I would sleep for 10+hours a night and still be exhausted.

I would have never guessed that I would have debt from all the doctors visits, blood tests, MRIs, CT scans, and therapy.

Five years ago, I thought all the minor pain, aches, and inconvenient body issues were just temporary or all in my head.

Five years ago I thought I didn't deserve much. I was walking the walk and talking the talk just like everyone around me. I blended in and did what I was supposed to, but not knowing what life really could be like.

My mind was sick but my body was well.

I couldn't see the future and I didn't care about myself at all.  I didn't want to be alive. Simple as that.

But I made it to today. Where my mind is well and now my body isn’t.

Yesterday hit me hard as I realized that my life was different than a “normal” 24-year-old. It is different than I imagined in so many ways.

Yesterday, floating and breathing my aches away,  I realized that I will never be able to accurately think of what my life may be in the future.

But finally, I know there is a future and I know I will do everything in my power to make it to the future. Mental and chronic illness along for the ride.

But today, I focus on today and making it to tomorrow.

September

September is Suicide Prevention Month and Pain Awareness Month.

This month is reminding me that both my mind and body are sometimes (or most times) working against me.

This next March, I will be celebrating (yes, celebrating) 10 years since my suicide attempt.

My mother and I both believe that the fact that I am still here and still fighting my mental illnesses, is something to be celebrated.

But this year, I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia, a disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues.

During the flare ups, I have a tendency to tell myself that I am fine. And when it comes to the pain, I am just being dramatic.

Then, I go home and take the world longest, hottest shower and cry sitting on my shower floor.

All while the pain and doubt is happening, my depression and suicide thoughts are circling, just waiting.

I want to get something clear; I have suicidal thoughts but am not suicidal.

But today, I am reminded that when it comes to my pain and depression, all optimism falls short.

I am a natural born optimist and I have the ability to get anyone to believe in themselves to conquer their worst fears and biggest dreams. Which is ironic because the mental illness and Fibro have their own way of taking away that optimism, along with my sanity and drive to do anything.

During this month, I mourn the parts of myself that were able to be active without pain and able to live life not according to a pain scale.

I miss the parts of myself that woke up early and had energy for the coming day and never canceled on plans because of pain or fatigue.

I miss the parts that could rally on after a long weekend with my high energy friends, living life with no regrets.

I mourn that person.

But this month I also celebrate being alive.

I am here to see my younger brother graduate college and go into the seminary. I am here to see my parents buy the house by a lake they will retire at. I am here to be the crazy aunt when my nephew is born and my older brother gets married.  I am alive and screaming at my best friends’ medical/dental school graduations.

And I am here to be loved by everyone who has supported me through all the diagnoses, doctors, medical bills, prescriptions, and mental breakdowns.

Although my body and mind seem to hate me sometimes, here I am still kicking.

As I carry on with this Suicide Prevention and Pain Awareness Month, I will keep telling myself one thing:

I am alive.

Pain

I grew up with something always wrong with me.

If it wasn’t an ear infection, then I had an allergic reaction to a lotion, or it was a sinus infection that made my eyes swollen. I had stomach ulcers that kept both myself and my mother awake for nights on end. I had random stomach pain, hip pain, migraines, headaches, and joins hurting.

I grew up to learn that my body will always have an infection somewhere and will constantly hurt all over.

I went to the doctor a lot.

But, was I ever diagnosed with anything other than a virus or an infection?

Nope. 

And so began my anxiety with doctors.

As I got older, I tried to decipher more whether my body was actually in pain or if, once again, nothing was wrong with it and my mind was playing tricks on me.

Now, I still don’t know how to tell.

This year alone I have gone to the doctor for intensive migraines (I thought maybe they could be caused by a car accident), multiple (like 8) UTI’s, loss of vision, dizziness, weight loss, and a few other symptoms that normal people would be alarmed with as well.

But me? 

It always turns out that it is all in my head.

Depression takes a toll on your body. But I am still figuring out just how much. Does a normal, healthy, 24-year-old who eats mildly healthy supposed to feel like this?

At what point will I know if something is seriously wrong? 

My mom is usually the ultimate decider.

“Mom I couldn’t see out of my right eye again. Do I need to go back to the eye doctor even though I just went a few months ago and nothing was wrong?”

“Mom I lost another 5 pounds and every time I eat I immediately feel like vomiting and then my stomach hurts.”

“Mom my poop is that weird color and has blood in it again. No I didn't eat anything different and no I didn’t drink anymore than an average 24-year-old does.”

“Mom my joints hurt so bad today that I had to take a hydro from when I got my wisdom teeth out just to get comfortable.”

This is my life. The pain and confusion of whether I actually hurt or if once again, it's just depression taking the unrelenting toll on my life.

So, do I like doctors?

 Not so much.

I am sitting on well over $1,500 in bills I can’t pay that turned out to be nothing.

But better safe than sorry, right? 

I don’t think I have ever talked to a healthcare professional and laid out all the things I feel in a day's time. It all makes me sound crazy and then nothing turns out to be wrong with me.

I’ve been through this two or eighty-seven times.

Depression doesn’t just make you sad. It takes away your energy.  It gives you migraines that take you to the floor. It makes you lose 20 pounds that you don’t have to spare. It makes your back and hips and knees hurt when all you want to do is go run.

Depression cripples your life more than just in your mind, it continues to take a toll on your physical body.

It gets to the point that you don’t trust your own body.

What is real and what is just in my head?

That’s a question I am forever asking myself.

The story of my scars

He found a scar and asked if I did it to myself.

He has asked that before but man, I am a world class liar.

I could get anyone to believe it was a clumsy catch in the kitchen or a fall because I literally cannot walk, or even say I just don’t remember a trip when I had too much to drink.

I could tell him anything and get him to believe that scar was some dumb accident and nothing more.

Explaining self mutilation is one of the hardest parts when opening up about this disease.

Sometimes, I wonder to myself if people see the scars and think that it was just a clumsy accident or does it run through their minds that I took a blade to my own skin? I wonder if they silently have thought about trying it themselves, or if they already have.

How hard is it to understand the thought process of the disease if your thinking from a perfectly healthy mind?

Why would you take a blade to your skin and cause permanent damage that is so visible?

Is it a cry for help?

Is it just to make sure that you’re alive?

It is to make the outside just as ugly as you feel the inside is?

I was once asked what the inside of my mind looks like.

It looks like dark, deep scratches on grey walls. It looks like a deep hole and you’re stuck at the bottom looking up at the clouds that are covering the light at the end of the long, long tunnel.

Thats what the inside of my head looks like when it gets bad.

When it gets good?

There are covering the deep scratches. The flowers are every lie I tell myself and everyone else. The flowers are the smiles I plant on my face when things start to go good because duh, I have to be happy when “great” things happen. The flowers represent everyone who loves me and relies on me in their life. They shine on my good days.

But after the good days, bad days always follow.

So why the cutting?

It starts with comparing physical pain to emotional and mental pain.

Its the feeling of being emotionally drained, like that after a loss of someone or the loss of a job.

That emotional exhaustion that leaves your body feeling like it got hit by a truck right after you ran a marathon up a mountain in freezing rain.

 Everything hurts for no reason at all.

You feel all this pain inside and out, but there is absolutely no sign of your pain.

So you cut yourself.

Whether it is because you feel like you cause so much pain to others that you must feel pain to, or you're just trying to make the outside match the inside, you cut yourself.

And for a brief moment, there is relief. Just like drugs, it wears off.

Then what?

Well then you get professional help or you do it again.

But the thing is, no matter how many time I cut myself I found myself back at square one. 

(Ya ya, everyone knows it isn’t the solution, blah blah.)

 I also found myself lying to my therapist about it. I was terrified that if she knew, she would lock me up in a hospital or worse, tell someone else.

An act that feels so natural to me, disgusts others.  

But it is all part of my story. I’ve made peace with my scars and now they mix with the beautiful art that is also forever inked into my skin.

Soon, the scars will be completely covered by ink in the shape of flowers, vines, and birds.   

The scars will be part of the past. 

Just adding to the story that is my life.

The truth behind "It's not you, it's me."

I’ve heard mixed reviews about “13 Reasons Why.”  I’ve heard it is phenomenal and sheds a light on an issue that needs to be talked about all while somehow relating to everyone who watches. I’ve heard it glamorizes the after-effects of someone who was taken by suicide and paints a picture somewhat related to mental illnesses, but yet so far from mental illnesses.

It didn’t hit home for me until the 11th episode around 40 minutes in.

As a suicide attempt survivor and someone who continues to battle with severe depression, I couldn’t contain myself. I did not shed any emotion throughout the first 10 and a half episode until Hannah (the main character) said one thing.

“It’s not you, it’s me. You don’t want to be with someone like me.”

At this point, I had a flash back to every time I said that to someone. I flashed back to every time I said something like that to my family. I flashed back to everyone who did walk away when I said that. No questions asked, no conversing months after. I remember what ran through my head that made me say that. I remember the scenarios in my head that made them so miserable because they were trapped with me like they said they wanted to be. I also remember the relief of when they did leave. There went another life I wouldn’t ruin with my dreadful presence as a shitty ass human.

In my head, everyone who chose to make me a significant part of their life has no idea how shitty I am. They don’t understand the pain I cause or failures that dominate my life. They just see a pretty smiling face, a loud laugh, and the world’s best liar.

In that episode, Clay (the other main character) said the he will never leave and he loves her and he isn’t going anywhere. But he said that in his head after she already died by suicide. He started to blame himself then. He started saying that if he had said something at the time then maybe things would be different. He blamed himself for her choices.

This, is what hit home the most.

This, is why I keep secrets.

It took my until I was 23 to find a guy that didn’t go away when I told him to leave. (And I’m lucky to find someone like that this early in my life.)

But the reason why I don’t tell him where the cuts on my body come from is the same reason why I don’t tell my parents. They blame themselves.

My parents did when I went to the hospital after swallowing a bottle of pills, my friends did after they knew of what happened, even my brother did after he found one of my first suicide notes.

I love this man I am with and I knew it when I saw him eating a burrito that he brought to a bar when we were celebrating my friends birthday. I knew it then, burrito and all.

But what he doesn’t know is how hard this relationship has been on me. I have gone against everything that I feel. EVERYTHING. Loving him doesn’t come naturally. It is the hardest thing I have ever had to do.

He has broken down walls that I was born with and that I was waaaay to attached to. But he did it and I let him. He has made me talk when I don’t want to but I need to. He makes me stop apologizing for everything that happens because he knows I will whether it is my fault or not. He makes sure I know when I am not in the wrong because he knows I blame myself for everything. Literally, everything.

Deep down, I know he knows what the scars and scabs and cuts are from. He is too smart to believe my lies, but I love him too much to tell him the truth.

This love that I have with him is not perfect because we are not perfect.

He sees my flaws and I see his, but he chooses to love me harder and harder each day. He choses not to leave.

That is one thing I never understood, and maybe I wont understand. That he is not trapped in this relationship. He is not stuck with me (the shitty human) for the rest of his life.

He chooses to be with me.

Everyday, he chooses to stay.

He choses to push me out of the darkness as much as he can, little by little. He also is learning that I won’t be able to completely leave the darkness that is my messed up mind.

But he holds my hand as we try to get as far away from the darkness as we can.

See what just happened?

He and I turned to we and us.

That’s what happens when someone refuses to leave your broken self;

They start to become the neon glue that puts your dark, broken self together.

And they choose to do that because they love you.

All of you.

I wish I could love Jaimie like that

I’ve read so many articles, books, blogs, and journals on how to love someone with depression.

I’ve talked to people who love people with depression and listen to how they know that it is just the disease sometimes, and that in no way defines their love for that human.

I’ve watched family members and friends go through phases of depression, are loved through it all, and love while combating the disease.

I’ve heard stories of my father loving my mother through her post partum depression, and thinking that just made her a stronger mother.

I’ve seen the aftermath of parents, siblings, spouses and kids after someone dies by suicide, unable to live with the thoughts in their heads.

I’ve seen my family and friends love me so hard when I went public with this battle in my head.

I have even recently seen the most amazing man heart broken because I can’t give him the relationship that he longs for and most of all deserves.

My little brother has held and prayed over me for peace as I cry for no reason.

My older brother has never missed a 3 am call from me just to ask a dumb question that in the end has so much more hiding behind it. He never resents me for that because that’s what cops do, they listen, protect and provide the comfort and strength when it’s needed.

My parents went through hell watching their daughter wired up to make sure the pills didn’t cause any damage, and then continued to walk through the same hell when I continued to lie about being ok.

They love me. They never once told me that I was too much.

They never asked for this, but they also never asked that any of it would go away.

The world’s most amazing humans building me up and letting me know how much they absolutely adore me constantly surround me. It has always been that way.

Jaimie, surrounded by love, hates herself.

I have very little hate towards anyone else in this world and it is because I have so much hate for myself.

When I was younger I hated my face (like most 12 year olds because puberty sucks).

Then in high school I hated my brain because I just wasn’t smart enough to do anything right (besides get into every college I applied to with scholarships, but other than that).

But in college, I hated myself for no reason. I didn’t suck to look at, I was doing well in my classes, I volunteered and worked with campus organizations, and was even an award winning radio journalist.

But what really made me hate myself is when I met someone who continued to choose to love me.

For months and months he had a way out, and I even tried to force him to take that out more than most.

But he chose to stay.

That made my hate myself the most.

My family is stuck with me because of blood but they would run if they could right?

So why the hell is this amazing human staying when I can’t give him a normal or remotely healthy relationship?

I knew I loved him from just a month into the relationship, but I didn’t want to say it because then he would be stuck with me in a way. It is easier to leave before that L word is thrown out.

Now that it is, I love him more all while hating myself more.

He and my mother talk and share strategies on how to love me through it.

They share strategies that I will never understand. They follow maps through my brain that they only know how to navigate by learning each one trial by error.

They see the scars, mental, emotional and physical, and love on.

While I can barely live on, they love on.

What is loving Jaimie like?

I never ask what they love about me because I don’t want to hear it. There is no way that I will see it like they do and it just frustrates me. They give me their all; emotionally, spiritually, financially, and even physically when I cant handle life myself.

They love a human that hates herself more than anything on this planet.

They continue to support the potential of someone who cant see the potential or the future for that matter.

They love the worlds best liar who continues to lie every single time at the therapist, counselor, or anytime anyone says, “How are you?”

They love someone who loves to continue to add to the pain and hate of themselves.

There are such drastic feelings in my life, and I can’t get rid of the feelings, or the people who constantly have them.

These people spend their lives constantly saving mine when I don’t want to be saved.

Without fail, they are at my door right as the blade presses against my skin.

They put a band-aid on my wound and continue loving Jaimie.

They will continue loving Jaimie and seeing the beauty in her crazed head.

I just wish I could love Jaimie like that.

I'm not dumb, some teachers just can't teach

I have had my fair share of tests. I have had my fair share of bad teachers who tell you that you just need to try harder, and good teachers who spend their days rebuilding your self confidence.

Kids who get discouraged because they do not do good on test, breaks my heart.

It took me until college to feel smart and to be told that tests don’t define you. It took me until college to find out that all the while when I thought I was stupid, and was told I just needed to try harder, I actually was dyslexic and had a learning disorder. It just took me longer to memorize and apply things. (In which somethings I will never use.) But none-the-less, I was forced to try to learn them, and then broken when I couldn’t understand it.

Now as a 23-year-old almost graduate with a degree in communications and journalism, I look back to those tests.

What have I learned from them? What was the point of them?

I have learned that I am not meant to be impressive on paper.

I am not meant to be understood by looking at my file or my class rank from high school.

I am not meant to be a statistic or a “She’s not going anywhere with her life.”

I am meant to be exactly who I grew up to be.

A strong, witty, caring, loud, bold, and SMART woman who can hold her own and doesn’t need a test to tell you I am smart.

When I was a senior in high school and applying for the small town little business scholarships, I didn’t receive one.  NOT ONE.

People who didn’t deserve some got many. People who were not nice got many. People who look good on paper got many.

Don’t get me wrong, a lot of people who did deserve those scholarships got some too.

But I went into college thinking I was just going to be below average, and have trouble understanding those classes too.

But turns out, I was going to excel.

It took 1 month for a professor to pull me aside and talk to me about my test scores.

She told me that I sit front row everyday, I answer all the questions, I participate and ask hard questions in a class that is all about brain function and considered one of the hardest for a freshman. But she couldn’t understand why I was failing my tests.

It took her 1 month to pull me into her office, look at my notes, realize they don’t make sense, ask me the questions I missed on my test, watch me answer each one perfectly, and then tell me that I am not stupid.

I was misunderstood.

I was smart.

I was just dyslexic.

I went through 12 years in classrooms everyday, with maybe 30 people, and they thought I was just not trying hard enough.

But it took her 1 month in a classroom of 60+ people, two times a week for an hour to pick it up.

After years of being told I just am not one of the smart kids, it took her 15 minutes in her office to tell me why I can’t learn like everyone else.

Because of her I learned to adapt my learning style, and the way I took tests.

Now I excel.

It just took that one professor to break my view of myself that tests and other crappy teachers and more test put into my head.

The tests said I was below average, but I was far from it.

Moral of this story;

Tests don’t tell you shit.

Pills and Jesus

I am now doing what I told myself I would do months ago.

It's what I wanted to do years ago, but the timing wasn't right.

I've talked about my struggle with depression and anxiety with close friends, family, and a few groups at various camps.

But in my whole life of struggling with this disease, 

I have never said the words that have haunted me my whole life.

The words that I denied for so long,

and ignored because I was "fine."

 

I am a suicide attempt surviver and I am going to talk about the damn thing.

Every time I do talk about it, it amazes me how many people were in my exact shoes.

So many people sat in the hospital bed like I did. 

So many people were and are ashamed of what happened to them.

And so many family members and loved ones are confused.

 

I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel and I am going to tell everyone and anyone I can. 

I'm going to explain how I get through each day with help from pills and Jesus.

I am going to freaking talk about it.

23

My mother was married when she was 23.

My grandmother had already followed her army husband around the country and was already 2 kids into her life.

I have countless cousins that were married with children by my age, but I do have some that are still single to this day.

I don't get pressure by my family as to why I never brought anyone home for the holidays.

I never get questions as to when I will have a boyfriend, get married, or have kids over a glass of spiked eggnog.

At the holidays, my family always asks about the important things like faith, school, and my dreams.

But still, they don't know the whole story.

I get a lot of comments when I go home like "Oh you're so beautiful"  "You just keep getting more beautiful." "I watch you on TV all the time." "You're sooooo good at your job." "You look just so happy."

And I always say a polite thank you.

Again, never anything about needing someone to complete me.

I grew up with a VERY strong woman as a mother. She took over the business that her mother started, built it up to the greatness that it is, and then sold it to do what she loves. My mother is driven with passion, faith and love. She always stood up for us kids, and always put us first. Her and my dad always showed us the good and bad of a relationship. They showed me love. I saw what it took to love, but I never knew it.

And still to this day, at 23, I don't know what it takes to love someone.

I have seen friends love so hard that it breaks them. They are blind by what they think is love. I seen it tear apart people, and confuse the hell out of them. I have seen high school sweethearts grow up and get married. I have seen people get married and get divorced in less than a year. I feel like at 23, I have seen all the different stages of love.

All but one.

I have never been in love.

I'm not sure I will even know if it happens, or I won't let it happen.

It is this disease that makes me think that I don't deserve the bliss that others have. I don't want to burden anyone by letting them love me. I feel like if they love me, than it's only because I haven't shown them the real me.

Because the real me sucks.

At 23, I am trying to let someone love me for the first time.

Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't.

Spending days with someone who can't control emotions and sometimes just doesn't talk to you for hours is tough. 

But yet, someone is sticking it through, and still wanting to be with me.

I am doing the most non-Jaimie thing right now by still sticking around.

I have never let someone so much into this whirlwind that is my life.

I have never been so comfortable with someone, but also, I have never felt so perfect.

He doesn't look at my flaws like they are a burden. He looks at them and kisses them, and continues to tell me how proud he is of me.

What the hell?

I feel bad for letting him have the idea that this could be a good thing.

He shouldn't love me because everything I touch explodes and my brain is broken.

No one should love a girl with a broken brain.

Especially one that is 23 and named Jaimie.

Tuesdays

At which point do you trust in yourself again?

When is it ok to say that my judgement is sane again?

When do I jump, or when do I tiptoe slowly?

The hardest part for me is trusting the plan.

Trusting what I think I need to do to make the difference that is needed.

In the next few months, I will be jumping farther into the unknown than I ever have before.

Is it all worth it?

 

Am I worth it?

Starting is the hardest part

Where and how do you start a conversation about depression?

How do you tell someone that you can't be somewhere or do something because it triggers your anxiety?

Where is the guidebook for all of this?

I have been battling this disease for nearly two decades. I honestly, cannot remember what it is like to not fake every part of my life to make myself sound better or to convince people that I did love myself.

When I was younger I would copy people and change myself in seconds. Now that I am older, I listen to others tell me what I am good at or what I should do with my life. I listen because they must be right. I obviously don't know anything. I trust every other persons opinion about me, more than I trust my own.

That doesn't sound like a happy life does it?

It's not.

I am never truly myself. I can never express myself. I cannot even think for myself. If I would think for myself I wouldn't be here. I would choose not to be here, just like I tried so many years ago.

When I was a freshman in high school I tried to kill myself. I thought that it was a mistake and I moved on. But the struggle continued, and worsened in time.

Now at 23, I am trying to figure out exactly how to live my life.

it took years and nearly a decade after leaving that hospital bed to realize I am not ok. It took my mother pleading for my life, years of crying on my little brother shoulder, hundreds of healed scars, and many many times of God calling my name to get to the point to talk about it now.

It has taken decades of hating myself, harming myself, and ignoring everyone to get to where I am.

It's not like I haven't talked about it before. But it was always me explaining how I overcame my problems. It was me telling other people stories on how I helped them through the darkest parts of their lives. It was me saying how great I am now. It was essentially, me lying.

FYI, I am not great now.

I am breaking and I can't find the pieces.  The last time I was like this, I ended up in a hospital bed for a night with my mother crying in the chair next to me.

This time is only different because I am not a risk. I won't repeat what has happened before. I won't put my parents through it again. I will never go back to the hospital bed.

I know I have worth and purpose. I just can't see it.

After years of lying to people saying that I know how great I am, I am coming clean and being honest. After too many compliments that I don't believe I wont shrug them off with an awkward "Thank you" anymore. After 140 some credit classes of people telling me I am so good at something, I am not listening to people who don't truly know me anymore.

This is me saying that I can't do this. But, this is me trying. This is my promise to the world that I will never give up again. I will follow the path the God is leading me down, and I will not give up. I am starting another journey at one of the lowest time in my life. 

I am also making it public.

I am making it raw.

I am not candy coating anything.

People haven't seen me for who I am yet, and they sure as shit will now.

Here is the first of many long, emotional word vomits after the second mental breakdown of the day.

Here is the first of many glasses of wine to help with my nerves.

Here is to the rest of this terrifying and unknown journey that I call my life.

But most of all,

here is too my family. I live for them and all their unconditional love.