If you asked me to describe myself, I’d describe myself as followed:

I’m a bubbly girl, full of energy, always trying to make people smile, going out of my way to make someone else’s day, and comfortable in my own skin. I thrive on socialization, adore spending time with other people, and I strive to take good care of myself.

Usually. That’s how I usually am. But lately, these past few weeks have been a completely different story.

Every day gets increasingly difficult for me to get out of bed. I have almost no energy to start my day, and maybe even less to force myself into the shower. I look in the mirror, and I don’t recognize the face staring back at me. I hate her. I hate that face. I’m tired of being me.

The regard for the well-being of others has completely left me. I don’t give a shit about other people. I live my life in isolation. I can often go entire work days without speaking to a single co-worker. I leave my phone on silent. I don’t answer text messages, and I’ve logged off of Facebook and other social media. I don’t have the time and energy to be disappointed by people, so I shut them out completely. I’m so tired of picking up everyone else’s pieces, yet no one can be bothered to help me with mine.

I can’t remember the last time that I’ve felt like myself. It’s only been a few weeks, but it feels like forever. This darkness has settled over me several times before, and I’ve survived, but each time, the battle doesn’t get any easier. If I can’t recognize myself, how do others? Are they seeing what I’m seeing? What’s worse than feeling this way is knowing that you’re not yourself and no one has noticed. How can the same people see you every single day, yet no one has noticed that anything is different or wrong or not even remotely okay?

Some people have asked if I’m okay. But that’s it. “Are you okay? You seem really negative lately.” They care enough to ask but not enough to do anything about it. They don’t offer words of encouragement, they don’t ask what they can do to help, and they certainly don’t ask if I’d like to talk. And when I tell them that I’m not okay and that I haven’t felt myself, they tap out of the conversation as soon as possible. The message that they’re conveying to me, whether it’s advertent or not, is that I’m a burden to them and my struggles are not worth their time.

How am I supposed to feel okay asking for help when my cries for help go ignored and unanswered, and especially right in front of my face? How are people okay seeing others struggle like this; interjecting themselves into the issue just enough to see what’s going on and then run away? True, it’s not their responsibility to fix me, but then don’t get involved if you’re just going to bail.

I know it won’t always be like this. One day, I’ll wake up and recognize the girl in the mirror staring back at me. It’ll be someone I love, and not someone I can’t stand to look at. My energy will come back to me, and I won’t isolate myself from others so much. One day, I’ll like being me again. I’ll love myself and I’ll be surrounded by people who notice.

I’ve learned to take things one day at a time because it’s something I had to learn in order to survive. And on days when that’s too hard, I take things minute-by-minute. All of my energy goes into putting one foot in front of the other. I’ve learned that you can’t depend on anyone but yourself, and at the end of the day, you just have to choose to keep fighting, even if it’s a fight you have to fight alone.

Feature image via Pexels.