Well I’ve never had a blog before so I thought I’d try it out here and see what it’s like. I don’t know how many out there have read anything on my profile page. Hell I just updated the thing for the first time yesterday so if you have read anything that’s pretty good. I’m 21 and attending the University of Washington here in Seattle. I’m a junior right now but plan on getting a doctorate in psychology and focusing on clinical psychology. I want to get into psychology because I have a personal tie to psychology.
In the summer, two years ago, I was officially diagnosed with major depression. I have had the disorder since I was 12 but never knew what it was. When everyone reaches puberty the brain matures and various neurotransmitters within the brain get their production ramped up. Serotonin is one of those transmitters. Serotonin helps control mood and when there is a lack of serotonin or serotonin intake within the brain mood disorders usually develop. The most common disorder to develop is depression, a disorder that can never be cured but can be managed. Most people get their serotonin production increased however I didn’t so as a result I developed depression. Depression is one of those things that is really hard to describe. I’m sure everyone’s seen those commercials where people are in dark rooms, teary eyed, and talking about how they feel hopeless. There is hopelessness but they way it’s shown doesn’t feel right to me. To me, normally, life felt like a terrible job I felt I had to keep. I didn’t enjoy life. In fact, I got to the point where I couldn’t remember what being happy felt like or if I had ever felt it at all. I didn’t really like talking because I didn’t see the point in it. At it’s worse I didn’t want to live. I remember hoping that I could go to sleep one night and not wake up or develop some sort of terrible disease and die from it. We’ve all heard the term ’suicidal thoughts’. Well, I had the normal intentional suicidal thoughts, the thoughts where I couldn’t see myself living another day and how I could go about ending it all, but the ones that really scare me now looking back are the thoughts that I didn’t intend to have. Thoughts, my own but not prompted consciously by me, of jumping in front of a bus while I’m walking on the sidewalk. Thoughts of me dying when I didn’t even intend to have those thoughts as if something reached into my brain and put them in there.
Well, like I said, two years ago I was diagnosed with depression by a clinical psychologist. He worked with me, while I took anti-depressants, to change the way I thought about every situation in life so that, if depression were to creep up again, I could handle it. Two years later and I’m a million times better. It’s amazing to me how much better I am at this point now compared to two years ago. I wrote a new poem “New Pair of Glasses” about this feeling. The feeling of conrolling depression reminds me of wearing glasses for the first time. The first time I wore glasses I was in the third grade and I remember how amazing it was to just look at things as if I’d never seen them before. Things like trees. People take advantage of looking at trees but imagine looking at a tree and only seeing a green top and brown bottom. None of the details, the individual leaves, the design of the bark, all of it, would be lost to your eyes. That was how I saw trees until that day in third grade. It was phenomenal and I look at the world, the people in it, and myself with that same amazement now that I have depression under control.
I want to a clinical psychologist so people who were in the same position as me or in a much worse place can be given the same opportunity that I was given. The opportunity to live life to it’s fullest and not just be a passive part of it.
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