Depression and Hard Times
Spoiler alert, it's not all sunshine and roses.
I had someone tell me the other day that my life looks awesome. How they wished they could have the freedom to go for a hike in the middle of the day, or take a week off to hang with friends or parents. And it got me thinking. The social media world, to the fault of all of us who play on this platform, gives people the idea that life is just sunshine and roses, that we have it all figured out, that there is nothing but good day after good day after good day. So, while I appreciate the compliment and hope that I am able to inspire someone to lead a life that makes them happy, I also feel compelled to share the truth. My truth. The truth of many who choose to have a social media presence and only show the good times, the good days, the successful moments.
The last 2 years have been the most challenging years of my life. My main business suffered greatly due to my health challenges (Breast Implant Illness), and my health challenges took over my life in every sense of the word. I have suffered from bouts of massive depression that still take me down a day here and there still, especially when I doubt my purpose, my future, and my reason for existing on this earth. My self confidence wavers on the daily and I have only just recently decided to let go of the pressure of being 'perfect'...it's not sustainable, nor fulfilling.
I spend as much time as humanly possible with my family, because I am terrified of losing them, so I make the sacrifices I need to in order to spend every moment I can with them, even though they live in another city. Life is far too short by the time you realize, life is far too short.
I hike or run or gym in the middle of the day because I work long past 5pm, and earlier then 9am, but I love that I have my own hours.
I am attempting to reinvent myself at the age of 50, to embark on several new things, in hopes I will bring more value and purpose into my own life, and hopefully into some of yours, and that is freaking scary. Like freeeeeeking scary. Fear of judgement, fear of failure, self doubt...all wrapped up in a snow cone. It's not easy, and anyone that says it is lives in Narnia and we best put a lock on that wardrobe.
I turned 50, WTH, where did the time go? And who the heck is that staring at me in the mirror?? The thought of growing old alone terrifies me, and despite never having the desire to have children, I sometimes wonder if I had chosen that path, perhaps I would have someone to be there with me as I age.
Just because people don't share their down times, doesn't mean they don't exist. I never shared my Breast Implant Illness or what I had been going through for decades until I had my Explant, and from that moment on it was to inform and educate, not get sympathy or have you feel bad for me. Again, a choice not to dwell on the negative and rather focus on my purpose which is to educate and empower others.
Now, I could go on about all of the negative or depressing thoughts I may have on the daily, but the point of this isn't to make you feel bad, it is to make you understand that I am just like you. We are all the same. Even the people you think have it all together, they don't. Believe me. So stop judging your own life, your own body, your own success. JUST STOP. We are all doing our best, and if you're not doing your best then get off your ass and start. Life is too short, remember?
You may be asking how then do I maintain my happy-go-lucky social media presence? It is a choice! I choose daily to look at everything that is good in my life. To keep enjoying the things I do have, to be ever so grateful for my health, my freedom, my family, my friends, this incredible city and nature I live in and near, and for the ability to reinvent myself at 50. In some countries, this would never be possible, I would be washed up in some corner like discarded trash. And knowing that, how can I be anything but grateful?
Our purpose is to be happy. So that's my goal on the daily, no matter what else is happening that I can or cannot control. I choose Happy.
~ Monika xo