Posted 10/18/2009 11:09 PM (GMT -7)
So. I am nineteen years old. I've felt different and out-of-place for as long as I can remember, but I started struggling with real, I guess "definable" depression in the seventh grade. I had problems with self-harm and eating disorders from then until my sophomore year. Then, this spring, I started having problems with depression AND anxiety. This resulted in psychosomatic symptoms, included extreme, constant nausea and digestive irritation, headaches, fatigue, and an occasional panic attack. I dealt with the depression, anxiety, and stress over the summer, but I'm now afraid that I didn't kill it to the root.
Note: I wouldn't consider myself an "anxious" sort of person- I'm very laidback- but I overthink things and analyze EVERYTHING. I can deal with anything that is out in the open, but if I don't know if someone I like (as a friend, or anything) likes me too, or I just don't know what's going on, I get extremely self-conscious and hyper-focused on the "problem." (Otherwise, I hardly ever focus on anything.)
Anyway. I moved to college a couple of months ago. I very quickly made many friends in my campus ministry. (Please, don't make this about religion, period. Just consider this as just about any other group of people.) For awhile, I felt like a part of things. Occasionally, I lapsed into that awkward feeling of just not belonging, but I ignored it.
However, now I'm "new" in the awkward way, and not int he "oh-how-cool-and-exciting" way. Now, I feel like the third wheel almost constantly. Part of this does have to do with the people in my large circle of "friends" here, in how they treat me, but I don't blame them. Because it's the story of my life. In other words, I never feel like I'm really a part of what's around me for more than a few moments, at best. I know who I am and what I am like- I know that I am NOT always quiet, that I DO have a lot to say, that I DO have a great sense of humor, that I AM a great leader, speaker, performer, whatever.... But I never learned how to convey those things to other people. I don't know how to let people know who I am. Only a handful of people really know me, and I don't even know how that happened. I hardly talk to those people anymore anyway, for one reason or another.
I feel like a third wheel. I always feel like I'm watching a movie; I'm not really a part of anything. Even though I have felt this way most of my life, I know that it is not supposed to be this way. And I don't know why I'm like this. I had every opportunity to be socially "normal." I grew up like anyone else, and my family is awesome.
I can't talk about it. I don't know how to express my feelings- comprehensively, or without feeling like I'm just complaining. The only people who I feel would "get" me- my family- I can't talk to, because they're dealing with so much right now, and they don't need to know that I am not happy. I want them to at least have comfort in knowing that I'm doing well.
It's like the newness and shine of this place has worn off, and when the shine fades, I can hardly stand anything. But I guess my shine has faded too. Maybe the people here can hardly stand me.
I don't want to go back to throwing up my heart into a toilet in the back of an IHOP because I can't handle myself. I swear, if I get sick again, I will go mad.