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The Depression of the Pussy

Hi cuties, I apologize in advance for literally taking so much time off from my blog but, as ever, I always have an excuse to warrant my absence. This time I felt I owed it to my writing and to you, so as not to write a load of bullshit which makes no sense.

I have gone to sleep always crafting a new paragraph in my head about this post that I am about to unfold under your eyes. The title may be genuinely and utterly uncomfortable for some, but for me it simply represents a step forward in accepting who I am, what I represent, my principles, and other systematic crap we tell ourselves after we read one mindfulness book (which, by the way, I am).

In my way too many attempts to candidly talk about what I experienced, I broke down crying with an overwhelming sensation of not being enough for the people actually taking the time to understand the barrel of words I summoned. I felt I was not delivering what people expected from a Romanian girl in America.

Before I introduce you to that part of my life I left out of publicly advertising, take a look at this:

(excuse the clarity?!)

 

This was taken at the end of the semester. I thought about translating it into English, but I also feel Romanians will understand the “essence” of my words much better. After I sent my sister that, I rushed out of the room crying. This was part of another post I intended to publish, but it never made it to the internet:

 

“Here’s a toast, which I couldn’t legally purchase in the US so I had to wait until Christmas day to clink clink with my lovely parents who only heard: yes, life’s great, good, and everything in between and my exams are fine. But in all hopeless reality and contrary to the Instagram belief, retail online shopping and frat boys don’t hold the key to happiness. Depression is serious when you realize there is something seriously broken inside of you. “The first step in solving a problem is recognizing there is one,” Katie told me while I was sobbing for the third time in three weeks in her arms. This was at a campus party. “Yes, fine, I have a problem!” I blurted out. So, my question to you, Wellesley, is: you told me I could be anything, then why did I choose being depressed?”

 

I wanted to make this post a little bit more unconventional than my prior ones and not solely focus on how I was caught off guard.

 

Everyone I met at Wellesley is depressed to a certain extent. I thought I would burst this bubble and show people I have it all balanced it out, but when I found myself naked in my room, crying all alone, thousands of miles away from any familiar face I grew up with, harming myself to stop the tears and just inhaling a suffocation sensation in… I realized something was deeply wrong as the wrinkles I had accumulated from too much smiling over the years had faded away. It took me almost two months to seek help and go to therapy because of my Romanian mentality of refusing it in the first place. I almost cried in every office hour I had, in the dean’s office, in every nurse’s office I had an appointment in, in therapy, in the bathroom, on my way to class, on my way home, and the list could go on and we could all wonder how I have so many goddamn tears in me and I’d join you.

 

I chose not to talk in detail about my experience due to the fact that it is different in everyone. It makes us or breaks us which is daunting and paralyzing. But somehow, I managed to crawl my pretty ass out of that never ending hole of self-loathing, dark thoughts, inability to communicate with my loved ones, and silly secrets kept underneath my skin. I found beautiful faces, kind souls, the heaven of shoulders to cry on, and a seemingly infinite tide of happy or “normal” days. So, here are some episodes or moments I would actually like to remember from this semester rather than the gist of my depression.

 

  • To my host mothers, Karen and Linda, and to their kids, Abby and Drew: thank you from the bottom of my heart. Linda asked me what was the saddest day and I replied with St. Nicholas. Some of my friends went home and sent my pictures of their fully packed boots and I woke up with my smelly tennis shoes hanging in the closet. It felt emptying. Before I left for the airport on the 24th (or the 6th of December as the letter suggested) I found this waiting (with the entire research done might I add):
  • To every friend who was willing to listen me ramble about my life at home. I know it was sometimes boring, I know you would have rather done something else during that time, but you took the time and listened to a wailing Romanian reminiscing of a life she could not let go. For that, thank you.
  • To my mom who learned about my depression after four months. It was raw. It was pure. It was heartbreaking. I took off my glasses, so I couldn’t actually see her face but I sensed it made her feel things she did not feel before. She said all the wrong things and pushed me to an edge I did not know still existed, but she is willing to learn. She is willing to accept my insecurities and unnamed episodes in our video calls as valid and as things I could not talk about openly. At one point, she asked me if it is that hard, why don’t I come home? I don’t have any mighty answer for you, pals. I simply changed my address and it takes a lot of fucking time to change your addresses.
  • To the women who paid for my extra cost at CVS when I didn’t have the money, nor the time to buy my meds. You didn’t know me. I even threw a fit like an uneducated brat before you handed over your credit card. Thank you for a silent lesson.
  • To the girls that were meant to be in my life only for a couple of months or days. You made me question my integrity, my personality. I thought that I would escape this type of people the minute I flew away from home. That is a complete and utter myth. Guys, assholes can be found anywhere. I remember this one girl who I shall not name, who has defended me from pricks who did not know how to properly react to my origin and how some of you even doubted my presence at this elitist school. I had a board up with things I would have liked people to stop saying to my face when they heard I am from Romania. She had a couple of drinks in and pointed out the guys in passing: yeah, Julia is actually smart even if she is Romanian. I guess, you tried?
  • To the nurse who listened two hours of me crying. Look, I know a lot of girls denigrate Health Services and they should change their motto to: Are you pregnant, though you came in for a sore throat, but they are just doing their job. And their job was never to listen to me sob for two hours straight. She sat me down and told me her story, her coming from Africa and not knowing anybody or anyone. How she sank in her own depression. How she called me beautiful though my make up was already soaked by my tears and my poor choice of red lipstick that day made me look like a clown. “You are truly exotic.” I was, wasn’t I?

 

And alas, I will properly give myself the benefit of the doubt. Here are some visuals and context from the months I was drowning.

 

Leaving home at 19 is just as hard as losing your mom in store as an 8-year-old with no cell phone and no whatsoever ability to communicate to strangers. The difference is, I have a cellphone and I have to only introduce myself to complete strangers. Because, as they say, you started a new chapter in your life. And in this ridiculous chapter, with no apparent plotline and a cesspool of intricate mistakes, you do not know any characters. They just come your way and slap you in the face as in: Hey, I like this and you like that, let’s be friends. Then you realize that hey, I don’t like how you treat me or how you are never there for me and everything else I do not care mention but because of how unfittingly almost anything seemed for me, I shut my mouth. I do not hold the courage to tell people here to shove it. How to complain about almost nothing, but at the same time have their own tiny lives that they do not share with the rest of the world.

 ***

It is my blog’s two year anniversary and I am keeping my fingers crossed it won’t shut down any time soon. It is probably the longest project I have and the one I have always put my heart, thoughts, and very soul into. This particular year, it completely drained me.

 

There have been many milestones, many firsts for which I had no idea I would step onto 12 months ago. I will throw the word “adventure” out the window and say life encapsulated me: it dragged my hair or it braided it and sometimes there was no in-between for breaks. Sometimes, I had to close my eyes for a second and weep in a corner, erasing compliance from my memory. I have lost and gained people in a way I didn’t think it was possible. For the very first time in my life, I benched myself in terms of relationships and stood this one out in order to focus on my growth, my inner peace. By that I mean I realized how unprepared to sincerely open up again and build from it. I don’t think I am, still. I implode at times. Wreak havoc others. Love most of it.

 

If it were naïve me from back home, the one that always slapped a smile on because life is just that great, the outgoing fugitive that my mom could not keep track of and all that, I would only talk about the great achievements I have pursued this year. But I believe people, especially my readers, deserve the behind-the-scenes of what I have done too.

 

During the summer, something happened to me, something I wish it didn’t have to be so provocative in reaction, making me censor my words, but I must. There are people out there who simply are not ready for what I have gone through and I don’t wish to trump it in their own faces without any particular warnings. That alone, a lot of girls will specifically know what I mean without naming it. It devastated me until I physically began hurting myself. The thought process began. All over again, as it happened for the second time in my life. I have written that draft for a thousand of times trying to depict a night in 2016 which ultimately changed my life and the outlook I had on it. My closest friends know what I mean and how candidly I speak about it because I refuse to be labelled as a victim. If you buy me a cup of coffee, I might just tell you.

Stopping from hurting myself is something I can get behind because I had a future in the States awaiting for me. So I left.

It dawned on me that the problem I had didn’t stay at home, buried underneath my bed where I cried myself to sleep countless of nights. It bought a first-class ticket with me and boarded in Qatar and I only realized it when I found myself multiple times crying in front of a doctor at Health Services. Using the word “abuse” to describe what I went through several times in a row. I had to get naked and point out. I had my blood drawn. I had all that and still I wept and wept.

Then counseling was the normal response to this chain of events but I hated it so much I never once returned. Having heard “aha” about a thousand times across the room while I was trying to remember the most morbid details of my life drove me insane and ultimately, out of the center cursing in my mind.

In November, I slept 14/15 hours a day. In the average case, that is a clear sign of depression. Then I started spacing out in classes. Ten minutes it would take my mind to become completely numb and void. I would come back to a reality check and start fidgeting in my seat, unable to focus on the subject at hand anymore. It didn’t actually affect most of my class work or grades, I still managed to fool myself that I was doing a good job notwithstanding what was going on. Then one of my professors grimed and said “you are depressed” and we both started laughing so hard I began crying. Then another one noticed my clear absence in mind during class and asked if I was depressed. “I don’t know, don’t think so.”

  ***

This was supposed to be a big-time Instagram caption. Thank God I did not post such bullshit, but here it is:

What. A. Year.

I don’t even know how to begin the journey I had in 2018 from the people I have gained and lost to the experiences, emotions, events that I went through. There were many milestones, many firsts that forced me out every comfort zone I have ever known from organizing a big time conference to getting a full ride to Wellesley to being on tv and in the newspaper for the first time; my blog celebrated its two year anniversary, finally Got my driver’s license though I am pretty sure I am a terrible driver, changed my home address and started from the beginning.

But there were many downs too, things that I didn’t advertise. For the first time I have experienced depression in its fullest form and it pushed me to the verge of mentally collapsing. Moving miles away is never easy and I took it for granted. I cried myself to sleep almost every night, slept countless days to avoid dealing with my emotions, slacked, spaced out, lost friends and the list can go on. Academically speaking, I am far from proud. It was a tough semester, as tough as it can be. But thanks to my professors, family, and friends I managed to pull through and start anew next month. Thank you to everyone who has been part of my 2018 no matter on what terms we are. I still have so much learning to do, it is crazy. There is an entire world out there that craves to be explored. I am scared, yet so excited for 2019. I won’t make any sort of list as I didn’t last year either. I think the only thing I can and hopefully will apply is to go work my ass off until what I want gets done.

 

Out and about in Boston with one of my friends. Utterly depressed.

***

100 years since the Great Unification for Romanian’s National Day on the 1st of December. Just me. Depressed.

***

Partying. Guess?

Soo…

Ladies, (and gents, if you are willing to bend an ear):

seek help even if it means destroying every pillar of the culture you grew up in where depression is a choice or a complaint. Choose to nurture yourself from the pits of an infinite hole; I am telling you there is no elevator to pick you up from downstairs. Not even stairs. There are some things which might throw you a rope and you have to climb the slippery walls of that cave. It is going to be so painstakingly horrifying you will question if you ever knew life. Other people have gone and are currently going through worse than I have described, things people do not write in books about but write because of it. Cry, shout, punch the wall if you must. Get naked and be gutted by your own damned self right in the mirror. It all starts with accepting this is who you are and you were given these resources. Let me try again.

Hi, my name is Julia, I am almost in my twenties (fuck), and I am a first year at Wellesley College. I deserve to be here. I do not need to prove myself more than my next door neighbor. I am Romanian and I am proud. And yes, I am depressed.

But I’d be damned if I don’t fix it.

Comments

  • reply

    Maureen Devey Jones

    Dearest Julia,
    It takes so much strength to share this, so much more than I had when I was a college student and I realized that besides my brother, there was not a single soul in the world that was focused on me or truly cared what I was thinking or feeling. It can be so hard to recognize that we are seriously depressed, way beyond normal, and then reach out to people to get help. Good for you for having the wherewithal to do that. Depression runs in my family. It took my brother Kevin; both my parents wrestled with it, as have I and my two other siblings. I so hope you feel more comfortable this semester, with the USA, with accepting help, and yourself. You have a fan club and I am a member!

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