Don’t worry. Be happy. 

I’m an awful human being…

Okay, I’m being dramatic. To be honest, though, I don’t like myself a good amount of the time. It’s a chronic illness I’ve had since I was a child: depression, followed closely by anxiety.  I’ve almost always thought something was wrong with me.

Even on happy days. I would sometimes feel I didn’t deserve to be happy. To be honest, I still struggle with the concept of allowing myself joy. I’m the sad girl. If I’m happy they’ll think I was faking. If I’m happy, they’ll think I’ve forgotten the awful things I’ve done. I can’t write happy poems. No one would like them. I’m the broken girl. The plasters shouldn’t show. 

Here’s the thing though, a lot of the time I’m both. I went to a party recently–one of those great shindigs where you know almost everyone there and the music is actually decent. During the party, I was elated. I felt I could finally stretch my cramped, small-town wings in a big city and flourish. I danced. I played games. I laughed so hard my eyes watered. I was sad, too. At certain parts of the night, I kept imagining maybe my friends didn’t want to be around me. I kept thinking everyone there could somehow sense I didn’t really belong. I worried my dress wasn’t fashionable enough–a thrift store find I had been so proud of til I saw the floor-sweeping, mid-season gowns all around me. I worried I was dancing more and more like a stripper on an interview for an upcoming rap video. I hated myself for worrying. 

I have clinical depression. I was diagnosed with social anxiety at fifteen. I am both happy and sad. Sometimes I am sad about being happy. It’s all okay. It’s just who I am today. It doesn’t have to mean anything for forever. Today I am happy and sad. Likely, tomorrow will be the same. 

I’m an awful human being. I’m an awesome human being. 

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