Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The Hand of Friendship

I don't like to attract attention. I'm the kind of person who is more content in sitting on the sidelines and observing than being the focal point. It isn't easy for me to put my writing out there for everyone to see, and it really isn't easy for me to talk about my problems. But, here we are.

My roommates last semester at the SLC light display
I have depression. It manifested itself last summer, though it came on so gradually that I can't really say for sure when it started. I've been working through it with a counselor since the beginning of September. This semester has been particularly difficult. My mood plummeted at the start of the year, and it stayed there for a really long time. I missed nearly 3 solid weeks of class because I simply couldn't get out of bed. I had this voice in my head that constantly weighed me down, telling me that I was worthless, that all of my friends were fake, that no one cared about me.

Luckily, things have started to get better. For the past week and a half, I've been taking medication which has helped balance things out. I still have my bad days, but now, at least, they are less frequent and more manageable. I have started to feel like myself again for the first time in several months.

Please understand that I'm not saying any of this to inspire sympathy. This blog post is meant to show our personalities and explain what our friends mean to us, and a large facet of both of those things in my life is depression. I can honestly say that without my group of friends and family to support me, I would not have been able to make it through this semester at all.
Me and Dad having fun at Christmas

 I have amazing parents. Not only do they love and support me, but they really are my best friends. I can talk to them about anything and everything. They're my go-to people for when I have writer's block, they're my editors, they're my cheerleaders. My dad is particularly good at helping me generate ideas and organizing my thoughts. We have a lot of fun talking about literature. In fact, he was the one who introduced me to Far From the Madding Crowd.

In addition to my parents, I have fantastic roommates and friends. They've stuck with me through some of the toughest times this semester and otherwise. I trust them and love each of them. My close friends are the only people that I can easily share my writing with, because I know that they will give me honest feedback while still being kind and supportive. Most of them also have similar tastes in reading and writing, so I feel comfortable sharing what I'm learning in class with them.

There is a line in Thomas Hardy's poem She, to Him, which touches me deeply:
Will you not grant to old affection's claim
The hand of friendship down Life's sunless hill?
Sometimes, Life can be sunless. Sometimes we go through very difficult things, and often it is the hand of friendship that gets us through it. I have been very lucky to have a group of friends whom I feel I can rely on, no matter what Life throws at me.

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