triumph over shyness. – august 23rd, 2015

When I was about 16 years old, I was going through an especially rough time with my depression and anxiety. I would feel suicidal fairly often and just wasn’t coping well.

I was excused from high school for several months so I could attend a program called Teenscope at the University of Utah. (Now all my high school peers will know where I was all that time when I said I was “sick”. Haha).

I was soooo nervous to go to this program, but it ended up being very, very good for me in many ways. It was like I was in some sort of emotional schooling…for 7-8 hours, 5 days a week. This program works with your school so that you don’t get behind in your studies – it’s really awesome. There was like one hour of each day at Teenscope where all the other kids and I would go sit at our desks and work on our “normal” schoolwork. Then we’d go right back to hours upon hours of hardcore therapy! Haha, it was so interesting. I would definitely recommend this to adolescents.

Anyway….I had some truly amazing psychiatrists and psychologists who worked with me there. My mother and I were given some great advice and truly eye-opening insight into my depression and anxiety by these specialists.

Now, getting to this book. Sadly, I have a reallyyy terrible memory, so I don’t remember this, but my mom said that one of my psychologists (that we really liked) had told us to read this book and said “It will change your life”. So, now my mom’s making me read it! Haha.

Sometimes I have a hard time reading books because I get kinda antsy (once again….thanks to my anxiety), but I was thinking I might do some blog posts on stuff I learn from this book. J

P.s. I hope you all don’t mind that I share this stuff. Honestly, I’m not proud of having depression and anxiety. In fact, I feel really ashamed of it sometimes. I hate feeling sad, hopeless and ugly so often, and I hate that it holds me back from social settings and being confident in myself. But, guess what, it’s not curable. Heavenly Father has given us each our own set of trials in life, and I think these are mine.

I won’t lie, every single day is rough. Some days are better than others. But, I would like to believe that I’ll get through this. WE can get through this, guys. I share things like this from my life in hopes of helping others. I know it sounds cheesy and over-used (and I have a hard time believing it sometimes), but YOU ARE TRULY NOT ALONE.

Don’t give up. We can get through this, together. J

Much love. Xo

 

P.s. This is so random, but it just came to my mind and I wanted to share.

One thing that was so amazing to me, and that I really appreciated, was that when I went back to high school after those few months, my teachers were SO sweet and understanding! It was so amazing. They had been informed on my situation, so that I could be excused from being in class for that time. After knowing what I was going through, when I got back, several of them pulled me aside after class to tell me that I could go to them to talk at anytime if I needed.

Ugh! People are so amazing! Haha 🙂 That’s the other thing about depression (or any mental illness), you NEVER know how much someone is suffering, because you can’t physically see it from the outside.

hard work. – august 19th, 2015

I’ve been noticing more calluses on my hands these days. Now, some people might think that was nasty and hate it. But, for me, it reminds me that my loving parents taught my siblings and I to work hard. I am SO grateful to them for that!
Yes, I do love to get glammed up and whatnot, but it’s also exciting to get sweaty and dirty doing hard work. 🙂
For example, for the past few days, I’ve been pulling weeds in our backyard. Now, these are no normal weeds. Some are taller than me. Seriously. Haha. I sweat like no other while I’m out there, and get dirt all over my face and body. Not a flattering image. Sometimes I’ll just kinda squat and pull the weeds, but other times I’ll just sit there in dirt — which is filled with earwigs and other nasty bugs crawling all over (which I hate).
Anyway, I don’t know why I’m posting all this. I guess it just got me thinking, cause the other night I watched a reality TV show of some women I’ve seen on Instagram and whatnot. I’ve always felt REALLY, REALLY jealous of them – their physical appearance, their opportunities in life, etc. After the first episode (actually after the first few minutes) of this show, I was like “HOOOOOLY COW. Please, NEVER be like them.” They were just overall very rude, catty women who find all their happiness in possessions, wealth, and fame. But to be honest, I don’t know that any of them are truly happy.
I guess what I’m trying to say is….I’m glad I’m the kind of girl who can get glammed up AND sit in the dirt with sweat dripping from my face.
That’s all! Love you all. Peace n blessingzzz.

a few of my all-time favorite things…and i miss them dearly. – march 26th, 2015

Things I LOVE and miss:

1. Single life with Andie Woodcox (now known as Andie Everill). 🙂
We had even decided we were going to go to college together, but ya know…love finds a way I suppose, haha.
Although, I will say, I am so, so, so happy Andie found her husband and is happily living her cute life. She even has two kids now and here I am…just…chilling. 😉

2. “The Truck”. This was the Woodcox’s truck that we drove around all the time.

3. Having bandannas and hippie-style necklaces hanging from The Truck’s rear view mirror.

4. A car FULL of my favorite girls in the world, driving around, jamming to music. 
(Fun note: In college, I did my final public speaking speech on how to have a completely awesome and correct “Car Jam Session”).

5. Hunting for cute boys. Oh, we were ALWAYS on the hunt, I’m tellin’ ya. I would like when Andie would drive so that I could be looking for cute boys in other cars. Haha!

6. In the Summer (and sometimes when it wasn’t even that warm), Andie and I would go almost everywhere barefooted. It was fun and you felt free! We did get kicked out of Forever 21 once for not having shoes, though. 

7. The days when Corey (Andie’s older brother) would picture up Andie and I from high school to go get lunch at Wendy’s.

8. We would go to the store Zumiez…A LOT. The people who worked there were super chill, friendly, and fun. They even had this awesome old couch set up & an old TV that you could play this skateboarding game on.
Also, the kid I had a crush on worked there, sooooo…ya know, we’d “drop by” quite a bit. 😉 
(Fun fact: That “kid” is still one of my very good friends and I am so glad I met him).

9. *This is one of my favorites* Sometimes we’d go to Andie’s house, I’d sit on their kitchen table, she’d sit on the kitchen counter and we’d just talk. Talk about anything and everything. I feel like that kitchen was where we had some of our deepest talks about life and whatnot. I miss that so much. I love Andie and her family so, so, so much. They are my second family. 

10. We kiiiiinda went through the whole drive-by your crush’s house thing. Haha.

11. We loooooved to roll the car windows down, feel the wind in our hair and stick our arms out the window. 
There may or may not have been several occasions where it was freezing outside (sometimes even raining or snowing), and Andie and I would roll the windows down, put our arms out the window…..and blast the heater!! Hahah! 

suicide, suicidal thoughts… – november 21st, 2014

I’ve been wanting to do a post about this for quite some time now. But, like I said in a previous post, I just worry that by me posting about this stuff, everyone will think I’m out to seek attention or whatevs. I just like to remind myself of the wise words my dear friend Cassidy Diamond once told me: “I always say that if someone has a problem with it, it’s not my fault, but theirs.” Hehe, anyway, carrying on…  😉

This is kinda funny, but what finally kind of pushed me into doing this post was watching an episode of “The Facts of Life”. Haha, I did not know about this show until recently, because it’s from the 70/s and 80’s. It’s so awesome though, my sister and I love to watch it and just kinda make fun of it.

Anyway, we were watching an episode the other night at a friend’s house and it was about suicide. Our friend’s cute little brother turned to me about 10 minutes into the episode and said, “This episode is really, really sad.” I just smiled at him, not knowing what I was getting into, haha!

The next thing I knew, one of the girls on the show had taken a bunch of pills and killed herself. It totally took me by surprise, but it was kind of cool, because this led into a way for the show to approach the subject of suicide (which I feel like people are scared to talk about), and they talked about how it’s not the answer to your problems, etc. I was just grateful that the room was pitch black because I seriously was sitting there crying to myself. It just hit so close to home of what I’ve been feeling recently, that it brought me to tears just thinking about the subject. So, anyway, that’s kind of what got me to finally getting around to posting on this subject.

I just really hope that someone may read this that is struggling like me. And they will realize they are not alone. I know sometimes it helps for me to meet people who struggle with depression, because they know how it is.

—–

For the past few weeks I’ve been really, really sad. More than usual. And I’ve had quite a few times where I’ve felt like killing myself, or just dying in general, is what I wanted. For me, the suicidal thoughts kind of come and go when I’m having a really hard time. Luckily, I’m a scaredy cat, so I’ve never acted on anything.

Don’t hate me for my honesty, please. And know that I am working on not feeling so sad, etc. 🙂 It’s a process!

So, I’m kind of sad…like, all the time. I feel ugly and fat all the time. I don’t like the way I look, and I wish I looked different. I feel like my face is so chubby, and no matter how much I work out, it’s still that way. There is an idea in my mind of what I wish I looked like, but I can’t achieve that.

I remember feeling this way for as long as I can remember, which dates back to some point in elementary school. I was the super shy, quiet, good student. I remember always feeling jealous of the pretty, popular girls and feeling self-conscious about my own appearance.

I’m really self-conscious about my nose and I call it the “clown nose,” because it’s big and round. Haha! Stuff like this sounds silly and I feel incredibly embarrassed admitting it, but this is my everyday battle. My thoughts are what I try to change every single day. Every single hour. It’s a constant battle.

(I hope I’m not getting off the topic of suicide too much. I guess I’m just sharing thoughts and feelings that have led me to suicidal thoughts…)

I was thinking the other day: I would NEVER say or even THINK the things I say to myself to or about another person.

A while back I had a therapist that really put that into perspective for me (and apparently I had forgotten, because I was just reminded of it). He asked me, if I had a friend who would follow me around all day, saying the things into my ear about me that I think to myself, how long would I put up with that? How long would I let that person be my “friend”? When he put it this way, I started crying. Hearing those things from someone else would break my heart. So, Mariah, what is the difference between someone else telling you those things and YOU telling yourself that?  Yeah, I need to kick my butt and not let my mind run that coarse anymore! 😉

—–

I have really bad social anxiety. Depending on the day, going out in public is harder some days than others. I tend to feel like everyone is watching me, and if they’re looking at me, I automatically think that they must be thinking negative things about me. I assume they’re thinking I have a big nose, or that I’m fat, or that I have something on my face.

These thoughts and feeling are all-consuming. Based off of feelings alone, if I could, I would sometimes run away and avoid the anxiety all together. But, obviously that’s not realistic, so to counteract these feelings, I try the “fake it til you make it” mentality. I try to carry myself well, hold my head up high, and I make eye contact with strangers and smile at them. I really try to think outside myself, even when all my thoughts are telling me negative things about myself. This can be incredibly helpful and really helps my anxiety subside and leave room for me to try to look out for other people in the world.

—–

I have had multiple people that I love commit suicide and the heartache does NOT get any easier each time. Such young, beautiful souls leaving this beautiful world in an attempt to be relieved of whatever pain they feel; whether it be physical, emotional, etc.

Last year, in about June/July, I had a new friend come into my life. My brother, Kyle, was dating a girl, and often when the two of them would come over they’d bring her younger brother, Chance.

Chance was THE sweetest boy, and SO handsome (I had a little crush on him). I remember one time he was working with my dad and I was in the living room of our house about to put on my makeup. Chance came in, got a glass of water, then came and stood by the staircase in our living room, just looking at me. I laughed because I seriously felt so embarrassed, sitting there with no makeup on; I felt hideous. But little Chance didn’t seem to care about that, he just started a friendly conversation with me! If I remember right, he asked me if I was ever scared of my dad, haha. I answered truthfully, and said that yes, sometimes I was intimidated by him, because he can be very quiet and sometimes you have no idea what he’s thinking. I then asked Chance if he was scared of my dad. He was quick to answer that he wasn’t, but that he enjoyed working with him. I was so proud of little Chance, out there working hard with my dad.

One thing I remember so vividly about Chance is that he could make anyone feel comfortable in any situation. There was no awkward tension about what you should talk about when you were around him, you just talked, and laughed. Chance could make anyone laugh.

I remember loving having Chance around because it just felt like he loved life and I needed that in my life. I honestly always thought he was the happiest kid alive and had everything going for him. But what someone portrays on the outside can be so deceiving.

Kyle and his girlfriend had gotten engaged and now it was just a few days til their wedding. I remember this day like it was yesterday and I still get teary-eyed talking or even typing about it. I was in my mom and dad’s room watching a movie with one of my nieces. My sister, Jessica, came into the room. I remember her face looked so solemn, even when I smiled at her. She asked me if I had heard the news, and when I said I hadn’t, she told me that Kyle’s fiance’s brother had killed himself. I remember sitting there, seriously feeling like there was no way that was even true and that she probably had it wrong for some reason. Somehow it finally clicked that she was talking about Chance.

“Chance killed himself?” I thought, “There is no way he’d do that. He was so happy!” When I started crying, Jessica asked me to go out with her to the living room. I can’t remember if my other sisters were already there, but I remember sitting on the couch, Jessica beside me, and I just bawled. The first stage of loss and grief is “Denial”, and boy, was I feelin’ that! I had never in my life felt so confused, horrified and sorrowful, all at the same time. I remember repeating things like “No, he can’t.” “It’s not real.” “Why?!”

What I remember saying the most was, “I don’t understand” over, and over, and over. I did not want this to be my reality. I could not bring myself to believe that young, handsome, sweet Chance had taken his own life.

I remember sitting on that couch sobbing, holding my sister Christine’s hand and just waiting for whatever came next. What could happen next? Life honestly felt like it was not meant to go on. There must be some way we can rewind, fix this, and live life happily with Chance.

It wasn’t until this time that one of my sisters brought something to my attention that I had no knowledge of. Chance had depression. I learned that the reason my brother and his fiance had been bringing Chance over to my house so frequently so that he could get to know us all better and feel comfortable coming over to us if he ever needed help or comfort, (because Kyle and his fiance would be moving out of the state after their marriage). This was the first time I had been informed that Chance had depression.

Then I felt mad. I felt mad, and was full of regret for not knowing this. Surely, I thought, if I had known, I could have been there for him, I could have helped him! I had no idea he was hurting so badly! No idea. He hid it well, like I try to.

And the fact that I know all too well how it feels to want to die, to be done with this life, to escape this pain you feel….that’s what really killed me; to know that he was suffering like I do. That broke my heart. I wish with all my heart we could have him back on this earth, and to let him know there is another way; that suicide is not the way.

But, we can’t do that. All I can do is remember him; remember my love for him, the way he made me feel, and try to help others who may be feeling the same sadness. I know we will see Chance again. And for that, I am so grateful. 🙂

—–

Sometimes I’ll text my brother Kyle when I need to vent or just tell someone I feel sad. One day when I told him I wanted to kill myself, he responded with something that I’d like to share. He said:

“After Chance did it, I debated it for a long time. One day I kinda had a mental battle with myself and came to this conclusion: I don’t really want to die, there are too many things I want to do in this world. What I wanted, was escapism; to get away from my current problems. If you remember, soon after, Christine and I went on that random road trip and it was really liberating. I realized at any minute I could drop everything in my life and change course, if I really wanted to. And I knew that would always be a better option than death.”

I love that. There is always a better option than taking your life.

—–

I love you all. I hope this helps, at least a little. I know my thoughts come randomly and I’m not the best at organizing…

Please know this: You are loved. If by no one else, I LOVE YOU! Seriously, I love people!

Feel free to ask questions or tell me your thoughts and/or stories. 🙂

a case of the tuesdays…oh wait, every day. – august 12th, 2014

Get ready for random ramblings…
For the past few weeks I’ve felt very overwhelmed with feelings of sadness, and I feel like tonight it’s all coming to a head.

Sometimes I don’t even know how to describe to people why I feel sad. That’s kind of how I am now.

Hearing about suicides is not the best thing for me because it makes it all the more real to me, all the more doable. I was so sad to hear about Robin Williams and how he took his own life. Whenever I hear about a suicide, I wish so badly I could have been there for that person somehow, could’ve talked them out of it; let them know it’s okay, I know how they feel, that I can help them get through it.

I just force myself to think “Suicide is NOT an option.” I simply cannot allow myself to believe that it is a way out, or that it is “okay” to do that. I can’t allow myself to think that way, because then I’d do it.

I feel like I want to go for a drive, roll the windows down, listen to music and escape life. Sometimes when I need a good cry I’ll do that.

My heart aches for Robin Williams. My heart aches for his family and loved ones. It aches because I feel like I know, at least to some extent, what he was going through, what he was feeling. I have wanted to take my own life so many times. It’s an all-consuming feeling, and it’s almost like, for me at least, the world goes black (figuratively and literally) and you truly aren’t thinking correctly. It’s like you aren’t capable of a hopeful thought; you feel like it really is the end of the world and that there is no way things could possibly get better.

All I can do when I feel sad like this, is pray. Pray my little heart out. I reach out for my Father in Heaven’s love, help and comfort. I pray for myself and I pray for the world. I pray for people who are suffering, in whatever manner. I do this because the things that are going on in the world make my heart ache. My mom just mentioned a story to me about a girl who was accidentally killed and I sat there trying not to cry, but I did! It is hard on me to be so sensitive to these things.

I hate how evil the world is. I hate that people have such hard problems. So I pray for them. That’s really all we can do sometimes, don’t you think?

I pray for women who are raped and abused, children who are hungry and homeless, people without running water. I pray for those who are in war; those fighting for us and those fighting against us. I pray for kids in school who are bullied, I pray for the bullies to be kind.

I just feel so incredibly overwhelmed with all the sorrow that there is in the world, that I feel like I maybe need to try focusing more on the good.

Sorry for my ramblings.

What are some things you do when you feel down? Suggestions welcome!

hold your head high. -may 17th, 2014

This is from like a couple years ago, probably, but whatevs.

My sister said something to one of my other sisters on the phone a bit ago that I just overheard. She is going to school at Utah State, and it’s been hard for her to be away. She feels like she doesn’t have any friends, like she doesn’t connect very well with her roommates, and she has a hard time at church because she has no one to sit with. So, when she called up on the phone, she was crying.

Katy had the phone on speaker so all of us sisters could hear and chime in with advice.

I remember something Katy said. She told my sister, “Hold your head high.”

Katy told her to hold her head high, be proud of who she is and what she stands for, and to hold her head high at church, school, everywhere.

I felt like those four words have changed me. I think about it each day, especially when I’m at school. I want to follow that advice also; to be proud of who I am, and what I stand for.

thoughts from back in august 26th, 2012 – may 17th, 2014

So, I’m finally trying to get caught up and enter my random thoughts and stuff I write down on scraps of paper into my journal.
I came across this entry, and kind of wanted to share. Enjoy!

August 26, 2012:

Last week in my singles ward sacrament meeting, the man speaker talked about how when we partake of the sacrament, we should try to really think about Christ’s body and blood, as He atoned for our sins.

He said how Christ took each of us to the garden of Gethsemane with Him, including me. I thought that was such an interesting way of putting it. I pictured myself walking in the garden, hand in hand with Christ.

Not only did Christ suffer for my sins, but He felt all my sadness, my heartaches, my loneliness, depression, hopelessness, my feelings of wanting to die. Christ suffered for me. Christ suffered for all of us.

Our brother, Jesus Christ, did that because he loves us! And He did it so we would have a way to return to our Heavenly Father one day. It makes me feel sad and guilty that he did all that for me, but, I am also so grateful because it gives me the chance to be clean and pure again.

As the sacrament was being blessed and passed today, I noticed a young girl sitting on her dad’s lap, talking kind of loudly about something. Her father whispered in her ear, “Shh, think about Jesus.” The little girl asked, “Where is Jesus? Is he talking?” (I think that was when one of the young men was blessing the sacrament.) 🙂 🙂

When I heard her say that, I just started crying. It was the sweetest thing ever. Her sweet little voice, her innocence, and eagerness to learn made me realize why the scriptures teach us to be as little children.

i have amazing people in my life. – february 1st, 2014

Sometimes I feel very lonely, because, let’s get real, all my friends are married, basically engaged, in a serious relationship with someone, etc.

Well, on Thursday night I had the chance to hang out with some of my lovely girl friends. It was such a fun night, and I just wanted to share a bit about it. I met up with Heather and Zoey and then we drove to Orem to hang out with Andie, her husband Mark, and their baby, Logan. 🙂

(Is this post so random? Haha, whatevs. You’ll get over it.)

As we were driving, Zoey was in charge of the tunes we were listening to, and she was playin’ some bueno ones! My poor little car, Sonia, doesn’t have an antenna thing, so I don’t get radio and I just have to listen to CDs all my life! ANYWAY, I kind of have to rely on others to inform me of what’s the latest and greatest in the music world. I was using the app Shazam to find out the names of like every song she was playing cause they were all so stinkin’ good and I want them in my life.

So, for the past few days, those songs have been my life. Andddd, I thought I’d share them with ya!

But, let me tell you about the rest of the night first. So, I am in love with music. I feel like it has a way of speaking to my soul, or something. 🙂 So, we were just cruisin’ to Orem, I was alone in the backseat, and I just sat quietly and looked out the window as I listened to these beautiful songs, and I loved it. I just sat and pondered life and all it’s little wonders and/or struggles. It was something beautiful. I honestly love when I’m in the car with someone, and I can just look out the window and listen to some tunes and think about things.

Moving on: So we met up with Andie, Mark and baby Logan at this Wendy’s in Orem. And, what the heck? The Wendy’s had been transformed into some futuristic place. It was kinda weird, kinda cool. I actually was kinda diggin’ it. There was this long, fake fireplace thing with all it’s little flames and it was glowing and all cozy.

Anyway, I’ve realized something. When I’m with these wonderful people, I laugh like no other. I seriously could not stop laughing this night, it was honestly just wonderful. We were just talking about the good old days and whatnot, and I just felt so dang happy!

After that, we went to Andie’s house and played the wonderful game Just Dance for a bit. Super fun. 🙂 I’m awful at it, but it’s still super fun. I just laugh at myself the whole time, and we’re good.

Then we watched Iron Man 3 while Andie did Zoey’s eyelashes. Okay, so I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about this movie, and I was still skeptical throughout it, but, oh my heck, Iron Man is too funny! I just love how he will say these HILARIOUS things and then just move on like nothing happened! Hahah, that’s my favorite, when the person is funnier than anything ever, but they are just like…livin’ life and don’t even realize how funny they are!

There were several times he said stuff and I was dying laughing. One of my favorite quotes of the movie was when Iron Man was talking to this young boy and he was like taking his suit apart or something (I can’t remember exactly), and he pulls out this little bit of it and says “This…is a pinata for a cricket.” Hahahaha! I was DYING. At first I was dying laughing because I thought he had said “cripple” not cricket, so I was cracking up, because it was so random. But when Andie told me what he really said, it was still just as dang funny, haha. I don’t know, am I crazy for thinking he is HILARIOUS in those movies?

So, in a nut shell, the night was awesome.

As I was driving home that night I could not stop smiling, thinking of funny things from the night, etc. And I just felt so dang blessed to have these incredible people in my life. I love them all so much, and it’s always so fun to spend time with them, especially when it’s been a while since I’ve seen them. It makes it so special. 🙂

Now, time for these awesome songs I’m now obsessed with:

First: “Love Will Remember” — Selena Gomez.
I know, right?? When I found out it was Selena singing, I was almost ashamed to like the song, but hey, it is what it is! 😉

“Chocolate” — The 1975.
I am LOVIN’ their sound. Take a listen! 🙂

“What Now” — Rihanna.
Agh. I have a crush on Rihanna’s voice. I want to sing like her.

“Once In A Lifetime” — Landon Austin.
I had never heard of this lad, but this song made me happy.

“Bleeding Out” — Imagine Dragons.
HOOOOLY CHILLS! I am lovin’ this song.

“Say Something” — A Great Big World.
Beautiful. And/or kind of depressing, but I like it.

fess up. here’s the bitter truth. – february 1st, 2014

So, sometimes I want to post on here, but I worry that someone will take what I say the wrong way.

I just want to clarify that anything I say on here is not with the intent to make anyone feel bad for me or to seek attention. Rather, the things I say are my very real thoughts, feelings and experiences as I live life with Depression.

My hope is that what I say will, in however small a way, help someone. I want people to know they are not alone in the way they feel, and that others in the world are struggling with the same overwhelming feelings. Whether those feelings be loneliness, hopelessness, feelings of wanting to die, or even the happy times. I am one of those people out there. I know how you feel. It’s the story of my life. It’s what I struggle with, every minute of every single day. And it’s not easy.

With that all cleared up, hopefully I’ll have the time to be posting more soon! 🙂

Love you, whoever you are.

Know this: You are needed and important in this life.

Don’t you dare give up.
If I’m not allowed to, neither are you. 🙂