By Raven Fon
She smiles brightly for all the world to see. But what lies beyond her cheerful countenance is chaining her to an unbearable weight.
Her smile is contagious- as is her laugh. Her eyes shine brightly and make you feel safe in their glow. Look from the outside, her life looks so put together. She’s spoken of her dreams for years, and now she’s living them. She seems to have the “perfect” life- and why shouldn’t she? She deserves it.
But things are different when she’s alone. She hides away all those smiles, and she cries.
She cries to find the inner-strength to keep going. She cries for the aches in her bones and muscles that never get a chance to rest. She cries for the money she isn’t making, despite working endlessly. She cries for the emptiness in her heart that pierces her to the very core.
And she smiles.
She smiles because her tribe shows her the love she so desperately needs. She smiles because she gets to wake up to gorgeous sunrises. She smiles when the majestic moon shines its blue-white beams down upon her. She smiles because she has manifested her dreams into a reality. She smiles because at the end of the day, she knows things will get better.
She plays many roles: your neighbor, your sister, your mother, and your wife. She knows she’s not perfect, but she strives to be anyways. She sees that other’s needs are met before her own.
She hides behind that big bright smile, but every single day, she is dealing with depression.
High-functioning depression, to be exact. It is a debilitating mood disorder that’s suppressed just enough for someone to carry out their daily responsibilities.
Some signs to look out for:
- Enhanced irritability
- Being too hard on themselves
- Substance abuse issues
- They feel like they are wasting time
- Dismissing things they once cared about (appearance, cleanliness, relationships)
If you feel like this, or if this sounds like someone you know, please remember that there is always someone who cares and who wants to help.
You matter. You are enough.