My name is Jasmine and I suffer from depression, but my depression does not make me who I am. A few adjectives that I would use to describe myself would be friend, foodie, avid reader, reality show watcher, charismatic, passionate, and dog lover.
I have struggled with depression since I was a child and I have suffered through trauma. Growing up I was sexually molested for years, my mother was an alcoholic, my father was a yeller. I lived in a very full house, but was a super lonely kid and were it not for my stuffed animals and books, I would have been so lost. These are things that happened to me, they do not define me.
I was almost raped in middle school, luckily a teacher came by. In high school I considered suicide, luckily my older brother was paying attention to me. These are things that happened to me, they do not define me.
When I was 17, I met my first boyfriend, my first love. He was verbally and mentally abusive, he had his own demons. I fantasied about killing myself. When I was 22, I began to put myself first and I left him. Six months later he killed himself, I still hear him saying “only you can save me”. After I watched them cremate him, I mixed my mom’s anxiety pills with a 5th of vodka, I woke up in the hospital. These are things that happened to me, they do not define me.
After all of this and much, much, more, I was broken and consumed by darkness, I learned that my darkness had a name, we call it depression. I decided that I could no longer continue living like that, so I used my university’s mental health resources and started talking to a therapist. In the beginning, I would say nothing, I only cried. I had to teach myself how to love me. I covered my mirrors with colorful post-it notes, each one had a positive affirmation, a love note that defines me.
These post-it notes have reminded me that I am a loyal and fiercely protective friend. I was reminded that I am strong, stronger than my depression tells me I am. I am pretty and my body is beautiful. My post-it notes reminded me that although I do have scars, I should not ashamed of them, and they make me who I am and most importantly I love who I am. I’ve learned that these are the things that define me.
I am not a therapist, nor am I a doctor. I am a friend who understands what it fills like to suffocate under the weight of sadness, to feel worthless, to not necessarily want to die, but to just want to stop feeling so fucking sad. These feelings do not define us.
I understand depression and anxiety manifests itself in different ways, and each person experiences it differently. This blog is an experiment in public journaling and expression of self, this is not a modern-day tragedy, but instead, a safe space of celebration and self-taught love. I welcome love and positivity as well as sorrow and pain. Hate of any kind will not be tolerated.
I hope you find this blog to be a reassurance that you are not alone, and that you are loved. We all are.
A few things to keep in mind on The Post-It Note, we have a Philosophy and a Mantra:
Our Mantra is “Learning Self Love Together”. Simply meaning that every day of our lives is an opportunity for learning and the investment that we put into work, school, and others should also be directed to ourselves where it is most needed, but often neglected.
Our Philosophy is made up of three manifestos to always remember when things start to get a little too difficult:
- We Are All Worthy Of Self Love
- Things Happen To Us But Do Not Define Us
- Every Saint Has A Past And Every Sinner Has A Future
These manifestos are at the bottom of every page, if you ever need a reminder!
As another reminder, for those days that seem a little too dark to deal with, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, it provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress. It also provides prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones, you can reach them here at 1-800-273-8255.