What You Don’t See.

This week is Depression Awareness Week. In the past, I’ve written about anxiety; however, I haven’t touched on my experience with depression much, if at all. Seeing that it is Depression Awareness Week, I thought I’d take it upon myself to bring awareness to something I have dealt with. When it comes to depression, there is a lot that is invisible. The Blurt Foundation launched a campaign this week which has caused Twitter to be flooded with the hashtag #WhatYouDontSee. It’s about time that we become more vocal about the invisible.

Depression started affecting me a few months after anxiety started affecting me. I didn’t want to believe that I was depressed, so I just convinced myself I was unmotivated because of school. But then I graduated early from high school in November, I had a two month break, and then I started college in January. Things were going well in life, but I felt terrible on the inside. Somedays it was hard to get out of bed in the morning. I didn’t feel any purpose in doing my classwork, even though if I failed it would be so much money wasted. My perspective in life had changed and it was so subtle that I didn’t realize I was changing into a negative mindset.

What blows my mind still about my depression is it physically put a grey hue on life. Colors weren’t as vibrant, the sky didn’t seem as bright and blue, and the beauty of life was gone. I didn’t think that medication would do anything for me; I got off of it because I tried so hard to just forget everything. I didn’t want depression to be a part of my life.

I eventually reached a point where I couldn’t fool myself anymore. I had a cloud around me that dimmed my life and my motivation to do anything was gone. I felt hopeless and alone in it. It’s that feeling which makes me want to speak out about depression. It’s more difficult than some people make it out to be. It’s a silent killer and it can steal all of who you are. When the invisible is affecting your life, it helps to have people who will support you. Help is sometimes the last thing you want to get, but it’s the only thing that can get you to a better place. I have a few amazing friends who have been with me through the thick and thin of life; if I didn’t have them, my journey would be much longer.

I am in such a better place, I know I’m well equipped if my depression returns. I have so much to be thankful for any appreciative of. And nothing beats a positive mindset in life—it will get you so far.

You’re Unforgettable.

I received an email this past weekend that was unexpected; it was from an individual who is a few years younger than me. I was still in high school when our paths crossed. She was in one of my last classes of HS. When I opened the email and started reading, I felt discouraged after reading the first sentence.

“You probably don’t remember me…”

I had to immediately stop reading–it broke my heart that someone could think that I’d forget her. Before I continued reading the remaining content of the email, I started a draft reply and made sure my opening sentence was, “Of course I remember you!” I appreciated and cherished the rest of her email, but that is beside the point I want to make right now.

This teenager who I only knew for twelve weeks; who I saw as outgoing, sweet, and genuine; who I respected and appreciated. This teenager who thought she was forgettable.

At first, I felt inadequate to empathize, because I’ve never thought about being forgotten. But then, I felt like I failed at truly showing this individual how much I appreciated her. It is a hard burden to carry, knowing that someone thinks you don’t remember them.

I cannot seem to let this concept go; it has opened my eyes and has shown my naïveté–something of which I never like to admit. But now that I’ve uncovered this, I cannot be silent about my reaction to hearing what this individual said.

There are people all around us who feel forgotten or forgettable.

I wish I could bottle up this feeling I get when I think deeply about it, so that you could experience it, too. It feels like everything stops and pauses for a brief millisecond–almost like your heart skips a beat. It is like that weird tingly feeling you get when you try holding your breath for a really long time. It feels like a mix of panic, confusion, remorse, even frustration. It’s like a spark igniting a flame within you that spreads through your entire body. It’s a passion to end the distress for those individuals who don’t feel remembered.

I may not know what the girl who emailed me feels like, but I do know that it won’t stop me from reassuring her of the truth that she is memorable.

To everyone who feels forgettable: you’re not. To everyone who feels lost in the shadows: you’re not. To everyone who feels ignored: you’re not.

I may not have the best memory in the world, but rest assured, my memory isn’t bad enough to forget a person. Every single person I meet leaves a lasting impression on my life–whether I’ve known them for an hour or for my whole life. It’s impossible for me to forget you, because you’re important to me. I care for everyone and that will never change.

I wish that I won’t have to receive another email, phone call, text, from a person in the past who is certain I don’t remember them. I am going to work so hard to make sure people know how much they will be remembered.

Each individual has something to offer up to you in life. You can take it or leave it. But you’ll never be forgotten.

You are not forgettable.

Believe it, it’s true.

 

 

25 Things You Might Not Know About Me. 

I love getting to know people! Let me enlighten you with 25 facts about me that may help paint a better picture for you, as to who I am!
1. I am an unintentional morning person. It’s rare for me to sleep in past 9:00am. 

2. I always have music in my mind and sometimes I can’t help but hum or burst out singing—this annoys my family members on a daily basis. 

3. I love mint chocolate chip ice cream. 

4. I don’t like the taste of mint toothpaste. 

5. I love discovering new words to put into my daily vocab; I like to sound sophisticated. 

6. When I was a freshman in high school, I joined the track and field team, but after 2 weeks I quit because the shin splints were the most painful part. 

7. I have a low pain tolerance except in my mouth. I never get numbed when I need cavities filled; I feel no pain from it at all. 

8. Me running isn’t a thing and probably will never be. I get winded rushing up the two flights of stairs in my house. 

9. I love cop/detective tv shows. Criminal Minds is where it’s at. 

10. I love learning and reading about psychology. 

11. I love to observe people and their behaviors to analyze their psyches. 

12. I have a bad habit of correcting people’s spelling and grammar. My mind is always in editing mode. 

13. I love my coffee black. 

14. Whenever I need to indulge my sweet tooth, my favorite drink is a nonfat, no whip, salted caramel mocha from Starbucks. 

15. Chocolate is my kryptonite, unless it contains any type of nut. 

16. I will rewind the opening credits of an episode of Friends if I forget to clap. 

17. When I’m home alone, my amp volume goes from 3 to 7. Some day I’ll shred the 6-string at 12….some day. 

18. My dream electric guitar is a Gretsch Pro Jet, white with gold appliances.

19. My dream acoustic guitar is basically any model from Martin. 

20. I love to make people laugh, but I get really self-conscious if I’m the center of attention. 

21. I can be extroverted sometimes, but I can also be introverted. However, I cannot force myself to be one or the other in a moment. 

22. I’ve always hated when people tell me I’m smart; it puts a lot of pressure on me to not disappoint. 

23. I tend to zone out a lot: during conversations, while watching tv or movies, and sometimes even when driving. 

24. The sense of humor that I have is sometimes too complicated for people to get, but most of the time it’s just stupid humor. 

25. I have always felt older than I actually am. When I graduated early from high school, I felt like I was already in my twenties. But that’s probably because I have older brothers and close friends who are in their twenties. 

And one bonus fact!

26. I absolutely adore old people. I saw a lady, probably in her seventies, at a bowling alley. She had a pink bowling ball and a pink bowling uniform. Watching her from 5 lanes over, I started to cry because it was so awesome and cute. Pretty sure she ended up getting a higher score than me…I hope I can be like that when I’m 70!!
Well, there you go! Twenty-six facts about me that you probably didn’t know before. Each person is unique in his or her own way. Thought I’d give you a glimpse into my uniqueness! Go enjoy your day and be you!

I’m Writing a Book. 

If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s failing to stick to a routine. I absolutely love writing and my website. But, I often push it off and let my app stare directly at me with judgement in the corner of my screen. It beckons me to its gentle hand. Eventually I feel guilty and cave. Which leads me to this moment!

The title does ring true and I have in fact decided to write a book. The current working title for it is Thinking About My Thoughts. I’m excited to write this book and hopefully make accessible to those interested. I won’t reveal everything I’ve written so far, but I will share with you all now, the book’s introduction!

I would consider myself a very active person—as long as your definition of active isn’t running a mile in under 10 minutes, holding a plank position for over 30 seconds, or tracking my calories. I have the physical stamina of an overweight, middle-aged man with asthma and a blood type of chocolate nugget. When offered to run in a race, I answer: “No, I will not be participating in your (5k/half-marathon/marathon/any distance farther than my front door to my mailbox event). It would take me twice as long as your slowest runner.”

My active lifestyle is more about my brain. I believe that our brains are only as smart and capable as we are, so I decided to spend my life expanding my capabilities and seeing all that I can get my brain to do. I am constantly thinking abdout things, analyzing situations, and observing people; yes, I have received some weird looks when I’m staring at strangers’ behaviors. There is not a waking moment of my day where I am not consciously thinking.

I don’t like to use the normal term for this—over-thinking—because it has a major negative connotation. I don’t believe you can think something too much; instead you end up ignoring the entire meaning of said thing and you get confused by your own thoughts. While some run away from this, I embrace it. I accept the fact that I have hit a mental wall and I use that opportunity to think about my thoughts. I ask myself why I’m thinking the thoughts I am and I evaluate it’s importance in the moment.

Thinking about your thoughts requires you to be vulnerable with yourself—to become self-aware.

This book isn’t about how to think about your thoughts, but instead is a book about my life and the times I pursued my own thinking in situations. This is a book where I open my mind—my vulnerability—to you, the reader, so that you can truly realize the power we all possess in our minds. And it all starts with thinking about your thoughts.

Make sure to stick around for a few months as I get moving forward on this project. I’ll try my very best to stay active on my site and to keep you posted on book writing endeavor!

Take it easy, kid!

Post-High School Life. 

It finally dawned on me this week that I will never have to go back to high school. I thought it would hit me November 26th—but what followed my finals was thanksgiving break. By the time it was the 30th and everyone went back to work and school, I felt like my vacation was extended. However, life likes to hit me in the face when I least expect it. It look as if my advanced planning was in shambles. One thing wasn’t going to work, then another and another. Eventually, I grew tired of my “fool-proof” plan. 
It was my expectation that the stress of high school would be gone once I finished. Much to my surprise, I felt more overwhelmed and stressed; I was entering the real world and nothing was going accordingly. Was I already going to fail at being a post-high schooler in the world? Niiiiiccceee, Emma. Reeeeeaaalll nice. 

Don’t worry though, there is hope for me! In one weekend, I went from pessimistic to optimistic. Every problem that went wrong with my plan, received a solution. I didn’t think I was going to be able to take online college classes before I start my freshman year at GVSU in the fall. I was informed that starting early would forfeit all my scholarships. 

But, this weekend, I received an email from MCC saying that as long as I had less than 30 credit hours from their online classes, my enrollment and scholarships for the fall ’16 semester at GVSU wouldn’t be affected at all! So this winter and/or spring I will take a few gen ed courses through MCC!

A few internship and shadowing opportunities for my interest in Speech-Language Pathology didn’t work out and I was left with no options to see what a SLP does on the job. But then, the admissions officer for the SLP program at GVSU, who just happens to go to my church, told me this weekend that she has set up some opportunities for me to shadow graduate students from GVSU and see on-site what it is like to be in speech path. 

I went from thinking that I wasn’t going to be able to write and that if I am being serious about my future and my career, writing wouldn’t be able to be a priority. Then, over the past two weeks, at least 5 individuals have asked me and encouraged me to pursue something with writing or English. They all told me that it would be wrong for me to put a stop to my writing. It was their words that gave me motivation to keep writing and honing my craft—who knows how far it will take me!

This week, I have finally realized that high school is in my past because a new plan has been created and it is one that I believe will lead me to success and clarity. I just wish I could have thought of it by myself in the first place!

So here’s to the future. To college classes, job shadowing, and more writing. I’m excited, nervous, and intrigued. But more than anything, I’m ready to go see what the world has for me and what I have for the world.