The Unseen Intruder

At some point in our lives, we have all felt sad. Sadness is an essential part of our lives because it reminds us of the need to be humble and offers a reference point for happy aspects of our lives. With sadness being an essential part of our lives, when does it become a problem? To me, it becomes a problem when the sadness lingers to the point where you lose interest in daily activities and leaving your bed becomes a physical battle.

I experienced this feeling growing up, but I never felt comfortable talking about it. I didn’t know how to start or who to speak to about the issue. I wanted to talk about it, but I feared being shunned or told to pray vigorously about it. I am a firm believer in prayers, but prayers without action wouldn’t benefit me, and I felt so lost. I also feared speaking out because expressing emotions wasn’t a common practice, so I didn’t want to be classed as an outsider.

I realised later that this trait, of not talking, was due to a coping mechanism brought about by the effects of slavery and colonialism. Before, I just thought it was reasonable to hold on to my feelings and let is damage me. I figured it was best to suppress it. That didn’t work because now as I get older, I saw my character developing from coping mechanisms based on my experiences. I thought about too many “what ifs” and hoped my life had gravitated differently. I’m now working on ensuring that my feelings are dealt with properly to prevent subsequent effects.

When talking to others about my experiences, I realised that others shared similar situations but are also afraid to speak about it. I’m so baffled that an issue so prevalent is not openly discussed. I believe it is crucial to remove the stigma related to sadness and depression. With May designated as Mental Health Awareness month, individuals are working to ensure this is normalised.

Beatus Manifestationes,
Nomadic Free Spirit

1 Step, (2 Steps, 3 Steps, 4)

We all have this ideology that we are not there yet. When asked the question, “why do you think this?” We go on listing things that we think we should have by a certain age — an ideology based on what was taught to us by society. We aim to reach hard this “gold standard” that we forget to enjoy the beauty of our present. These would include anything that brings you joy.

If we were to do introspection, we would realise that we have lots going on. We seem to fixate on the opinion that we are continuously deviating from the plan. If we are not strong-willed, this “deviation” can be daunting. We can be consumed with the notion that our lives are just stagnant and can act like we are in auto-pilot.

Many times I did feel this way for extended periods. It was THE WORST feeling because I couldn’t help thinking about how wrong my life is going. This made me so frustrated because I couldn’t do anything to fix it. It made me replay on all the decisions I made and classed them as regrets. I always thought about the “what-ifs.”

I always seem to feel worse after I speak to a friend or family member as they would remind me of the things I’m yet to accomplish. After the encounters, I always go into further panic, then tried to figure ways to attain these goals. This pattern had me more into my feelings and subsequently, a wreck. At this point, I was genuinely stagnant, and I was going in circles. I eventually realised that my new goal was to be happy and started working towards that…