I find myself just sitting here staring at a blank document again at a loss for words. So much I want to say, but no idea where to start or how to write it… I have neglected my blog for so long… I began this blog with such a positive attitude, but then life came knocking at my door and threw me down again.
I struggle everyday with depression and anxiety. I struggle not to fall again. The only things that kept me from doing the unthinkable is my daughter and a game. Yes… A game. A game called ArcheAge. Other players there know me as a smile, a friend or enemy, a joker, and sometimes a bit of a troll. Only a few know of the dark shadow that had invaded my real life.
Now I have a wonderful fiance who keeps me from falling as well as helping me get my life back. My daughter helps me too… Even in her brattiest of moments when I want to rip my hair out and scream… I still love her so very much. Cat, my fiance, and her are my world.
Even with them at my side and the game to distract me… I still feel that dark shadow there just waiting for me to fall again.
If you are reading this now, and you’re someone I gamed with either on Aranzeb or Shatigon servers on ArcheAge… It may come as a bit of a shock to you… The woman you talked to in game… Was clutching at a very faint will to live. She was hurting and had no where else to turn. The woman who you smiled and joked with was sitting on the other side of the screen with matted hair and a filthy apartment. Why the hell did I let my long beautiful hair mat up and tangle to the point I had to chop it all off???? Why the hell did I not clean my apartment???? WHY????
Because I had lost the will to live.
I wanted to die. But I had to keep going for my daughter.. I did the minimum to survive and to take care of her. I fed her, loved her, and cared for her the best I could. But still I struggled so very hard. I cannot possibly ever describe that horrible horrible dark feeling of wanting to die, but at the same time not wanting to hurt your child… And you know your child loves you and needs you. She needed me.. So I kept on. The game was my escape where I could pretend that everything was normal and okay. It was a place where I could unleash my anger on enemies and have at least a little bit of fun with other players. It distracted me from real life. While I was playing, I didn’t have to think about reality… I didn’t think about whether or not I should live or end it all. ArcheAge lessened the pain a little. It became my pacifier, my security blanket.
It was in this game that I also met Cat and we fell in love. It was then that little by little him and Boo (my daughter) breathed life into me again. ArcheAge went from being an escape, to a place where I could interact more with Cat than just Skype. He is the man of my dreams and more. And just a note to you girls out there… A true man will love you no matter what you look like. I cried a lot when Cat and I first Skyped. I told him about my depression and my hair. He still loved me. He was by my side when I took scissors to it. I chopped it all off, it was beyond repair it had gotten so very very bad. I had tried saving it… Using oils, combs, brushes, everything and anything I could… Googling and YouTube couldn’t even save my hair and I wouldn’t have walked into a salon like that to save my life… So I stood in front of the mirror and cried as I cut my hair… Going from ass-length hair to a pixie cut in a matter of minutes. A very bad pixie.. but pixie nonetheless. The next day my Grandmother and sister came and took a very ashamed me to the salon to fix my hair… Which the stylist did a beautiful job on.
I was ashamed.
When I cut my hair off it made me realize just how much of a mess I let myself fall into. It takes a LOT for hair to get THAT horrible. That alone kind of was a wake up call to me. I had to stop this, and NOW.
I had to face not only the shadow that haunted me, but I had to face the fact that I was being a very bad mother. What kind of example do I set for my little girl when I never want to play with her? What must she think of Mommy’s hair being so nasty? What goes through that little mind watching me slowly waste away day by day? I thought I was taking care of her… I was and I wasn’t…. A child needs love, play time, and interaction. She had to endure Mommy never playing with her and never feeling good. It sickens me to think about it even now.
When you go through depression you don’t realize how negatively you affect those around you. Then when you finally wake up and start to come out of it.. The realization dawns on you, and that in itself threatens to pull you down into the pit again.
Also.. Even though I “snapped out of it” doesn’t mean that I was cured and “all better” overnight.
Every day I struggle, ever day I’m still clawing and clinging to the side of that pit, climbing out of it inch by inch. Sometimes it’s a little muddy and I slip down a bit… But I see that now, and instead of giving in I grip that wall harder until I think my fingers will break. I grip it with all my might until I stop sliding, and then I grit my teeth and start climbing again.
This is depression. He is a formidable foe that haunts me everyday of my life. Don’t feel sorry for me, don’t pity me. That isn’t what this post is for. Instead, learn from it. I’m not good with words and I refuse to go back and edit this for fear I will become ashamed and cowardly delete the entire thing. I want to speak out on behalf of everyone that fights depression. Don’t tell us to snap out of it, don’t tell us it’s all in our heads, don’t tell us to smile and get over it… It is not that easy.. If it was we would certainly love to do so! You harm more than you help… Instead of being open with you we hide from you. You make us feel weak and ashamed…. When really we are some of the strongest damn people you will ever meet! We fight this war with depression… Some of us don’t make it, others of us are lucky. It is very real, and it is very hard. Reach out to us and attempt to understand us, talk with us, comfort us. Don’t tell us to just get over something we have to fight with every day of our lives.
To fellow gamers: Don’t be so quick to judge people.. Even in a game. Some of us fight real life monsters that may bleed over into our game time via anger or whatever. I am guilty of this. I publicly apologize to all those I may have negatively effected in real life through a game. Now I take a step back, and when someone fires off in game, I try to talk to them instead of fueling the fire… Sometimes my temper still gets the best of me but I try. For some of us, that game becomes a lot more than just a game. A lot will never understand this aspect of it… Yet a lot will too.
To those that think games are a waste: A game is part of the reason I’m still living and able to type this. Just let that sink in for a bit. Some of us are never praised for our abilities in real life. Instead we are put down, bullied, and laughed at… In games we become a useful part of the society which forms inside the game itself. We get praised for our strengths, we get help for our weaknesses…. Things we never got from people like you in real life. Maybe try to be more supportive of people in real life, because maybe your part of the reason why some of us find gaming so attractive in the first place. In a game there is a place for everyone… I wish real life was the same.
I have spilled part of my heart with this post. I will not go back and edit. If I do I will erase it all… I’ve been warned not to tell my weaknesses so openly.. Told by several that people will only use it to destroy me. To that I say Bring It. I’m ready to make my wounds into scars and turn my weaknesses into strengths. I’ve been through hell and back. If you attempt this the only thing you will get in return… Is totally and utterly ignored. That’s it. Nothing more, nothing less. You are not worth my time. If this post can save at least one life, it is worth it. If this post can make people more aware and accepting, it is worth it.
If you are a sufferer of depression and at the bottom of the pit and the end of the road please PLEASE reach out to someone. I’m leaving the hotline number here, please call them. They genuinely really care about you. I genuinely care about your life as well! If I can survive the pit, so can you. Talk to family, friends, call the hotline, message me… Anything. You don’t realize just how many people truly care. I know I didn’t… Until it was almost too late for me. You don’t get a second chance at this.. Once done there is no undoing. So stop, breath, and talk to someone. Don’t give up until you find someone who will listen and help you. You are loved.. Never ever doubt that!