Like most of us, I've had my fair share of ups and downs throughout the years. I've experienced both the euphoria of a wonderful high, and endured the agony of an impossible low, and so far my life on this earth has been a complicated mish-mash of both. Yes, there's been loneliness, self-harm, eating disorders, ill-advised experimentation with drugs...And later, crippling anxiety, abusive relationships, depression so paralysing it left me unable to get out of bed or dress myself in the morning...But joy and sorrow are flip sides of the same coin, and happiness can be afforded to all of us - even the seemingly wretched. So, yes, I've also had good days. I've met best friends, discovered connections with family members, found a job I love, begun working towards a career I know I'll be happy in. I've become somewhat more comfortable with myself, and who I am. I've laughed at stupid jokes - really, truly laughed - and had it feel easy, like the most natural thing in the world.
I've fallen in love. I'm not out of the woods yet, and right now I still struggle every day. But I have to believe that the struggle, the dull daily ache of mental illness, is not my default setting. It is not something I just need to deal with, or have to endure. IT will endure ME. It will endure my strength, my determination, the positivity I fight every day to keep hold of - and one day, it will start to give up.