I seem to always beat myself up over not accomplishing things when I “should” have. As I’ve talked about in another article, we can be our own worst critic (Your Worst Critic). I recently watched a video on social media, where a headmaster of a school was talking to, what I assume to be, 3rd year high school students at the beginning of the year. He states that in 2 years, the students will be starting university. In 5 years, they will be starting their careers. At 30 years old, they’ll start a family and buy a house. Their lives will be set for them once they reach this point. Then another man stands up, and says, “headmaster, I disagree with you.” He goes on to talk about how he has know people that found love at 18. People that didn’t go to college until they were in their late twenties and found a job right after graduation. People that graduated at 22 and didn’t find a job until 25. People that didn’t start a family until well after 35. The moral of this video, was that everyone goes according to their own timelines. Just because someone finished college at 22 doesn’t mean that you have to as well. I was touched by this video to almost the point of tears.
Something that I struggle with for most of my adult life has been what am I going to do with my life. I’ve talked about this before in What Do You Want To Be When You Grow Up. I’ve missed many of what I feel to be milestones in my life due to my mental illness. Graduating college, finding love, getting a good job, you name it, I’ve probably missed it. I didn’t even really graduate highschool, while technically I have a diploma, Depression go in the way there too. What this video taught me, that I already probably knew, is that life goes at its own pace based on who you are. While this does not help the feelings of disappointment that I feel, it does offer me hope, which is hard to come by with mental illness. While I’m almost in my mid twenties, I still live at home, I have a terrible job, I am up to my nose in bills and responsibilities, it all feels like I’m failing at life. I don’t discount that it’s probably the fault of my mental illness that I’m in the position I’m in, as well as the reason that I feel this way.
Life is an endless struggle for people like me, which is why suicide seems like such an appealing option. While I do not encourage nor romanticize suicide, I’ve always felt like it would be an end to my pain and suffering. The age old saying, that suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem doesn’t seem true to me; as I will most likely be dealing with this suffering my entire life. By definition that makes it a permanent problem. I know that it’s my depression that makes me feel this way, and I’m in no danger of taking my own life. I just can’t help but wonder, if I were not depressed, how my life would be drastically different. The ugly truth of the matter, is that no matter how much I wish that I was not afflicted by mental illness, there is no escaping it. This is my life, and it is up to me to make the most out of it, whatever way I can. Therefore, take what I say to heart, that life will throw you curveballs as often as it can. It is up to you to go with the flow, and take control of your life. There is no set schedule at which you must live your life, only one that you create. So get out there, and make the most of your one life that you have. Starting now, that’s the same thing I’ll be doing.