I suggest we start caring more about each other

Friday / March 20, 2020

I was worried about the fact that I haven’t been very inspired or didn’t know what to write about lately. Very unlike my machine-like working mind that comes up with different stories all the time. Luckily, there is so much going on in the world I finally have something to write about. Sarcasm aside, let’s jump into the story. (I’m so excited to write!!!) It’s true a lot has been going on in the world lately; this shitty virus came out of nowhere and it’s taking over the world in the blink of an eye. I’m not going into science or medicine as I know so very little about it, however, I’m going to express how it has made me feel and think. I went to the grocery store today (actually yesterday as it’s past midnight now) and even though I was not surrounded by people that much, and even though it was just a quick errand, I still felt very irresponsible when I came back home. I felt my anxiety taking over me. It’s inevitable to go to the store and buy what is necessary but I don’t know, even though I knew I was healthy, it just didn’t feel right at all. It didn’t feel right to put myself at risk. Please don’t think of this time as an opportunity to hang out with your friends. None of us is on vacation. We must stay inside and protect ourselves and others who may be more at risk than we are. I’m young, I’m only 22, but not everyone around me is. Especially not here in Croatia, the country where I live, where elderly people make a big part of the total population. Please be more considerate, and keep in mind that your irresponsible behavior can seriously damage someone who might not be able to recover. I’m healthy right now, I will make sure I stay healthy and that way, I’ll protect other people’s health as well. If we all do that, if none of us puts ourselves at risk, we can get through this shitty time quicker. Another thing that’s been running around my mind is gratitude. Life has not been easy, at all, but I’m healthy. You know when you feel a pain you’ve never felt before and for a second you think you’re dying and the only thing you want is to be healthy? That’s how I’ve been feeling lately. Nothing else matters. Immigrants and refugees have also been on my mind, as their living conditions are poor and their health is at risk. I’m devastated. My mom asked me why I cared about them so much. I care about people in general but I especially care about people who none else seems to care about. And this is my answer to my mom’s question. I myself, am an immigrant’s child, I myself know how I felt growing up in a society that didn’t want me. But I had a home, a warm home with warm food on the table. If I was having a bad day outside, or in school, knowing that I had a home to return to kept me going through the day. And what do these poor kids have? A tend that flys away once the wind blows a little harder? What keeps them going through the day? No country will be able to escape from different cultures. No country will be able to remain 100% ‘authentic’. As long as they’re contributing to the country, people should be free to create a home wherever they feel it’s best for them. They say the world isn’t divided by race, culture, ethnicity, religion, sexuality like it used to be. What is it then? It’s even worse now. You know why? Because people used to be painfully honest about not wanting someone of a certain characteristic. They used to express it openly whereas now, people like to pretend they’re open-minded and accepting when in reality, they’re far, far away from that. False acceptance is real. A lot of people still struggle to think outside of the box. If these poor people get the necessary support now and if their kids get the chance to have a home and education, they could help the country later. Wouldn’t you want a helping hand if you lost it all today? Make people feel welcome, no matter who they are and where they come from. Sometimes that’s all they have, and in days like these, that’s what could get them through the day. 

This country didn’t want me, but my parents created a warm home here. My education is here. My memories are here. I might not be staying here in a couple of years, but it’s undeniable that this country has given me a lot of things that I’m thankful for. Just like me, someone else could be thankful too. All they need is a chance. 

♡ Albesa

Growth, gratitude, and improvement

[2:09 PM / Sunday / June 17 2018]

Here I am once again, starting a story without really knowing what I’m gonna write. I’m not worried about it though, the stories that I write without planning them turn out being the most relieving ones. Anyway, let’s start. I don’t like the fact that I haven’t written in so long. Actually, I have written a bunch of stories but they’re kind of all over the place. I own way too many notebooks and each of them contains small bits of stories that I started writing in another notebook. I’ve been quite confused these days. I don’t really know how I feel anymore and I truly mean it when I say it. Things have not been getting better or worse, they’re kind of the same most of the time. I got used to my new, work life, routine and I like it because I finally feel like my life makes sense, at least a little bit. When it comes to work, I must mention that I’m doing pretty good however, I know I haven’t been trying my hardest. I’m not gonna start with excuses, I’m just gonna say that I’m gonna work harder and be even more content with my work. A month and a half have gone by since I started working and, oh boy, time goes so fast! I got my first ever salary which felt so strange because I felt like a real adult for the first time in my 20 years of life. Since I’m talking about work, let me mention that I told my manager about my anxiety problems. I had to do it because she asked me why I never ate in the kitchen where all of my colleagues eat. Her answer was the answer that I was expecting; ‘it’s all in your head.’ So many things were going through my mind at that moment. When I came home, one of the things I wrote down in my notebook was this one: ‘people tell me ‘it’s all in your head’ without realizing that that’s exactly the biggest problem people like me deal with. We suffer because it’s in our heads, it’s us who have to live with it day by day. It’s us who have to fight with it day by day. It’s me worrying about every little thing around me, it’s me that I’m afraid of what will happen tomorrow. If those thoughts about me were in someone else’s head, I wouldn’t spend a single minute worrying about it, trust me.’ I can’t remember if I’ve ever written anything more truthful than that. I don’t think I’ve ever agreed with myself more. I have realized one more time that people don’t understand the struggle that anxiety and depression bring, neither do I expect them to anymore. I remember describing it in a few words and it just never worked. My pain, my struggle and my fear, they were always belittled, which only ended up causing me even more negative emotions. I’m okay now, I really am. I’m aware of everything, I’m trying not to think about anything that makes me unhappy, I’m trying to improve the quality of my life. I have a few plans that make me happy just thinking about them so I’m gonna work on those. One of the best things you can do for yourself is keep yourself busy with the things that fulfill you so choose a few things you would like to do more and every time you have some extra time, do one of those things. Spend your time in peace, spend your time away from places/things that remind you of rough times, disappointments, a broken friendship or a broken relationship. Work hard on creating a new, healthier surrounding that will make you feel like a new person which has nothing to do with who you were or where you’ve been in the past. You have the right to start over anytime you want, you have the right to make changes and make the most out of your time while you’re still alive. You have the right to do the things that people disagree with as long as you know that the option you’re choosing is the best option for you. Cherish the things we usually take for granted, cherish your health, your family, friends, food, your roof over your head. Gratitude, compassion, and positivity are a way of life, it takes some time to learn to live like that but once you’re there, you’ll realize how simple some things can be if we don’t makeup things in our heads. Let people know how much they mean to you, be that one ‘annoying’ friend who keeps saying ‘I love you’ all the time. If that’s a part of you, don’t hide it. I tell my cousin/best friend I love her at least 5 times a week because I really do and when that thought comes into my head, I express it. Acting cold or emotionless is not really my thing neither do I think it’s cool or funny. Emotions are meant to be expressed otherwise you’ll kill yourself way before you’re really dead. Oh, yeah, let me end this story with some nice things. I feel like I’ve grown even more since I’ve started working. I acknowledge every little bit of my progress and it makes me extremely happy. I’m also continuing my therapy very soon which is absolutely awesome. I’ll be out of the dark room sooner than I know! My goal for this month is to keep this positive mindset and keep moving forward. That’s basically it, I don’t think I have anything left to say at the moment. I’ll definitely write more in the future, I’ll try at least once a week. We’ll see, no worries, no pressure. My dear people, I wish you a good time and a healthier life. Work hard on yourself, achieve what you want to achieve and stay humble. And to all the hardships, heartbreaks and disappointments, it’s time to say goodbye. We’re all leaving you behind.

We got this.

Love, Albesa

The surprises that life brings

[7:46 PM /  Saturday / May 19, 2018]

It’s been over a month since I’ve last written anything. It’s so strange that you feel like nothing is really happening but when you look back, you have so many things to write about and that’s exactly why, all of a sudden, I feel the urge to express myself and mention everything that happened. I want to start by saying that it’s true when people say ‘your life can be so different a month from now’. It sounds like a cliche and quite unbelievable but here I am, a living example that life can change and that patience does pay off. About a month ago, I was laying in bed, probably swearing out of madness caused by the pain I was feeling in my leg. I couldn’t walk, I couldn’t sleep and I couldn’t stop being bitter about life. Basically, I wasn’t in a good place, neither physically or mentally. It was around 4 PM when my sister woke me up telling me she had a job for me. I woke up and asked her ‘how dare you wake me up’ and she told she would never wake me up if it wasn’t important. And she wasn’t lying. She got offered a job which she couldn’t accept being a fulltime student so she asked me if I wanted to try. The chance was too good and knowing that I had to make changes in my life, I decided to try. I was scared and overwhelmed but I made it. I applied for the job, wrote a motivational letter and a week later, got invited for a job interview. I couldn’t believe that something good was happening. I went there, did the interview and left the company feeling like I did good but still could have done much better. I had zero expectations because I’m quite young (the youngest people who work there are college educated people in their late 20s) and even though I speak many languages, which is the most important part of the job, I didn’t want to have my hopes high and then end up disappointed. About 2 weeks had gone by when I got an email saying I got the job. I wasn’t at home by that time, my sister told me about it. I couldn’t believe, I thought she was joking. I left the company feeling like I could have done much better so the fact that I got the job was insane. Here I am a month later, writing this as an employed person who’s been busy trying to get used to the new routine. I wake up at 6:15 AM and get home and 6:15 PM. I don’t have a lot of free time so the first thing that I noticed is that time is so precious. I go to sleep at 10:30 so I try to be as productive as possible in those 4 hours. I even forget to check my phone, which I thought I was addicted to. Basically, life is much different than it used to be. I’m not running from my social anxiety anymore, I’m dealing with it on a daily basis and even though it’s hard, I see that I’m not dying like I thought I would. I don’t hear my family dramas that often anymore (which is so so so good!!!). I fixed my sleeping problems and I appreciate my time more than ever which is why I don’t deal with childish situations anymore. I’m becoming more responsible and more independent. No one has my back at work so I have to have it. The people around me are kind and nice but my anxiety doesn’t let me relax. I don’t really know how to talk to them first so I may seem self-centered or something similar. Even if they talk to me first, I feel like I sound stupid so I often don’t continue the conversation. I spend my lunch break reading books while everyone’s having lunch in the kitchen. I spent almost five years isolated, spending time only with people that I’ve known my entire life so now that I’m surrounded by a group of complete strangers, I hope I learn how to be around people without feeling like I’m gonna pass out. All in all, life is so much different than it used to be just a month ago. It’s hard but I’m extremely happy. I’m all about making changes because I know that good things happen and the work that we put in pays off. I know staying patient pays off. Majority of the people around me are super supportive and I’m so thankful for that. As a person who is extremely emotional, every single drop of support is welcome and it means so much to me. I want to continue creating myself, become a confident person and believe in myself and my abilities. I want to learn as many things as possible and then help others find their light in all the darkness they might have felt over the years. That’s basically it. There is more stuff that I would write about but I prefer to end this story with positive vibes. Keep going, keep trying and stay patient. Hardships are not forever and choosing to believe that you can change your life is the first step you must take in order to become a happier and healthier version of yourself. Never stop hoping. I root for every single one of you. 

We got this.

Love, Albesa 

Patience

[12:43 AM / Tuesday / April 10 2018]

While feeling low and fighting with emotional pain, I started considering patience a neccessity. Let me tell you why. Patience has saved me so many times. It has saved me from saying things out of anger, it has saved me from hurting myself and hurting the ones around me. More importantly, it has saved my sanity. It has made me stop and re-think and thanks to that, I made healthier and better decisions. I know there are people who are naturally a little temperament but I feel like patience is a quality that you can work on just like you work on some other skills, like riding a bike or dancing. I think it’s one of those things that can improve if you work on it hard enough. I know changing a part of your routine isn’t the easiest task in the world but the thing is that, the changes that are hard to make always turn out to be the most rewarding ones. I’ve always been a patient person but my patience wasn’t big enough back in 2013. when I first got anxiety and depression. I didn’t know how to deal with emotional pain since I had never experienced it before, it was scary, overwhelming and I felt like I was dying. I still struggle with emotional pain, however, I do have to say that nowadays I deal with it quite good since I’ve learned so many things over the years and one of them is how not to lose control. My way of dealing with depression and anxiety is isolation. I mostly rely on myself and my therapist when it comes to my depression. My best friends are also my big supporters and we’re always there for each other but since they have their own problems, my problems can get a little to much for them to handle which is why I prefer writing. I prefer being on my own when I’m having a hard time because it makes me search for solutions. My solution always happens to be patience. It could be that I’m under control of negative emotions which causes me pain and then what I usually do is write down what I can do to make it better. It’s always good to write about happy and beautiful things in life since those are the ones that make life worth living. While writing about those things, you actually remind yourself that not everything is as bad as it seems in those depressive hours. Writing down your goals boosts your patience levels because you imagine yourself in a better place than you are now and you actually want to stay alive to experience life from your imagination. And staying alive requires patience because life is not simple and we must learn how not to get hurt from every little thing that can happen. Not forcing things is also a form of patience. Be patient and see where things are going naturally, whether it’s about school, college, work, friendship or relationship. Forcing things that are clearly not functioning is not something you should insist on. It’s gonna make you feel exhausted because you’re not gonna get back that same energy you invest in other people. Try but make sure you know when to stop. Start working towards being your own priority. Patiently work hard and be aware that life doesn’t change overnight. Never stop creating yourself. Never stop learning things they never taught us in school. Life might be hard at the moment but remember that your life is gonna keep being the same as long as you keep doing the same things over and over again. Start changing your life by reading a book for example. I know that not everyone is a book person but the amount of knowledge and wisdom that is brought by books is amazing. They are a source of priceless information that can help you become a better/healthier person and are healthy for your brain which sometimes turns off after hours and hours of pointless scrolling your Instagram feed. Acknowledge what you haven’t developed yet and start working on it. Ask for help if you need to. Watch movies about it if you prefer that over reading books. Talk to strangers and older people. Just start somewhere. Become a better version of yourself, day by day. Work on your patience, take a deep breath when you feel like you’re going crazy, walk away when something makes you upset and don’t let that darkness take over you and make you do something you wouldn’t normally do. Acknowledge that not every situation requires your reaction. You can deal with things quietly, without causing any damage. 

The words written above are written based on my personal experience. I’ve learned that things that feel so far away are actually the things I can reach very fast if I start walking down the path of never-ending growth. 

Love, Albesa

A result of a sleepless night 2

[2:30 AM / Saturday / February 25 2018]

I feel like I’ve been thrown to the wolves. I feel like I’m dying as time is passing by. I feel my spirit getting exhausted from all the heavy weight it has to deal with. I feel my heart pounding like crazy because I’m stuck in this unknown zone. I call it ‘unknown zone’ because at this point, I know nothing about my life. Absolutely nothing. I don’t know where I’m going and where I’m gonna end up. I have better days but I’m not getting better. I have faith in the good but I’m so afraid of the bad. I’m terrified. I try so hard to keep myself busy, I really do. I waste my time effortlessly scrolling through the nonsense on the Internet just so I don’t have to think about my misery. This is not me. I see myself in the mirror but this is not me. I’ve never been a person who gives up easily. I’ve never been a person who likes to sit at home and do nothing productive all day. I used to be obsessed with the things that fulfill me. Walking around with my camera used to be a routine of mine. I used to see beauty everywhere, even in the things I saw every day. It didn’t matter, they were never boring. I used to go for a walk everytime I felt myself getting hit by my anxiety and it helped me a lot. I still do that but not as often and as much as I need it. I find myself looking for stupid excuses for not doing something that could help me. ‘It’s cold outside.’ ‘I’m tired, I haven’t slept in 30 hours.’ ‘I’m gonna do something productive at home.’ Who am I lying to? Who am I trying to fool? I know I’m not doing my best, I’m really not. It’s not an excuse but I know why. I get discouraged so easily. And since it’s so easy, it happens a hundred times a day. And that’s a really bad thing. Things that happen on a daily basis, even the smallest ones, they break my heart and they take my willingness away. I’m constantly reminded of things I want to forget. I want to forget so many things, yet I feel them spreading poison inside my body. It’s not my fault. A lot of things happened over the last four and a half years and I lost myself trying to find a way to deal with them. I haven’t found a way to deal with my emotions other than sitting at home feeling completely heartbroken. I have not used my tragedies as motivation like a lot of people do. I didn’t know how to live with them so I, unintentionally, let them dictate my life. It brought me nowhere but these curvy roads of doubt, fear and disappointment. I see it now. I see that I should have thought more about myself and less about everybody else. I see that I shouldn’t have thought that I could protect everyone. I shouldn’t have thought that I can force myself to forgive people for letting me down so badly. I should have said it a long time ago, that I’m hurt and disappointed, but I haven’t because I didn’t want to make them feel bad about their actions. Does keeping my mouth shut means I’m supporting their actions that have hurt me? Does that mean that I’m as guilty as them? My dear people, I have said it before but I’m gonna say it again. I have learned so much about myself and other people while being at my lowest. People are not gonna treat you right just because you treat them right. Such a thing has become rare a long time ago. Don’t expect people to care about you the way you care about them. People are afraid of letting other people into their life and the best way to prevent that is acting cold. You’re gonna meet those kind of people and I can guarantee you, that’s the case in most of the times. People get hurt and traumatized. They develop many fears such as meeting new people and getting let down once again. Fear of getting more personal with someone because they might use it for wrong purpose. Trust issues, self-doubt, pesimism and many other serious disorders ocurr. I must make myself act deaf and blind sometimes. I must do that so that I don’t see things that break my heart. I only want to feel alive from now on because I’ve been feeling dead for a long time now and I don’t accept that version of me. I hate it. Hate doesn’t have a place in my heart, never has, never will. I want my heart to pound like crazy, but from happiness and positive excitement, not from anxiety and depression. I want to beat this dark and toxic version of myself so that, one day, I can help others do the same thing. I want to prove myself that life can be beautiful even after being broken. I want to be an example to people who suffer like me. I want to give them hope and support to become healthy and happy again. I’m gonna put in work in myself and then work on getting the possibility to help others. I’m gonna achieve everything that I dream of and non of this darkness will ever stop me. It might make my heart break, but my spirit, never. 

Sending light, positivity and support to everyone who needs it. 

We got this.

Love, Albesa

Late night emotions, thoughts and imagination

[1:00 AM / Thursday / February 15 2018]

Sometimes it gets extra hard. Sometimes you feel like you can’t deal with anything anymore. The moment you start feeling like your chest is burning in a fire with no mercy; write, cry, scream, do whatever, just let it out. Let that painful monster get out of your chest so you can sleep peacefully, even just for an hour or two. Sometimes I don’t even know who I am anymore, I don’t know if I know anyone I’m surrounded by, I don’t know anything. Sometimes I believe that I’m strong enough to challenge myself and see how I’m gonna survive and sometimes I just want to stay in this dark room forever. Actually, it’s not that I want to do that, it’s just what I know and what I’m apparently good at, considering the fact that I’ve spent here almost five years. My heart is broken, my mind is confused and my body doesn’t feel any better either. Every little thing hurts. Every single one. There’s so much damage in me. Is it my fault? Am I responsible for this? Will I feel better if I blame someone else for my pain? Will I ever go out and feel alive like I used to? Will I ever go out and not feel like I’m gonna have a heart attack? There are many questions but zero answers. Why am I even looking for answers? They won’t heal my broken heart anyway, they won’t make me forget about my dissapointments. You know, I talk to people and I laugh with them and I think about how happy I seem to be. I come home and I wonder; do people ever suspect that I’m not doing well? Not that it matters, it’s just something I think about sometimes. People are such good actors. People choose to get burned in their own fire of feelings rather than openly saying how they really feel. The fear of saying it out loud is incredibly strong because our expectations don’t always match the reality. The fear of not knowing what’s gonna happen next is terrifying and that’s why we accept this painful zone rather than all the hard work required for getting out it, which to a lot of people, often feels impossible. It’s not impossible, it’s really not. The walls we build around us are our biggest enemies, they’re not our protectors as we think they are. Those walls are stopping us from doing what we want to do. We have plans, we have ideas and visions when we close our eyes but once we open them, everything is gone. Why? Why do we choose to just stare at these walls instead of smashing them somehow? Why don’t we get along and help each other more? Why do we get laughed at for every little thing, even for having feelings? Sometimes I look at the world and all I see is a blank canvas. It’s sad because the world is super diverse you know, there are so many things to see, so many people to meet, so many songs to listen to yet non of that is done. What does the world want? What do I want from myself? Will I ever stop thinking about the world which I can’t control? Will I ever find peace and get out of the dark room? I’m afraid of not being able to hope anymore. I’m afraid of not being able to make my dreams my reality. I’m afraid of not being able to smash the walls I have built over the years thinking that they’re gonna protect me. We can’t hide. We can’t run away from life and what happens in it on a daily basis. The goal is to learn to control our emotions and live normally with them inside of us. The goal is to find peace and believe that you can have a nice life after all the pain you have experienced. Write, cry, scream, ask for help, do whatever it takes but never let yourself think that the walls you built are your forever. Your forever is so much brighter than the dark room with no windows. Your forever is what you see when you close your eyes and no matter how awful you might feel at the moment, you’re still gonna find a way to smash every wall that’s infront of you stopping you from walking away from all the misery. These walls are not you, this misery is not you, this pain is not you. You are what you love and what you accept. Do you accept this? Close your eyes and look at your happy self in your imagination. It feels good, right? Does it remind you of how strong you actually are? Keep your eyes closed and keep looking at your happy self while you passionately smash those walls and create a window which is gonna bring you light. Use that window as an exit from that dark room. Create a stage out of those bricks of pain and get up there. Take a bow, walk away, chase your dreams and live.

Open your eyes and do that. 

Love, Albesa

Becoming healthier

[10:10 PM / Thursday / January 25 2018]

I have chosen to change my life completely. I’m calmer than ever now that I understand that changing my life is entirely about me and my decisions. The things around me are gonna remain the same but it’s not about changing the things around me anyway, it’s about changing what I choose to focus on. I’ve been suffering from depression for four and a half years now and making changes after such a long period of time feels very scary. After all these years, I must say that I’ve learned to live with my pain, I’ve adapted my life to it and everything that’s not a part of it is terrifying. I’m afraid of trying something new, I’m afraid of the things I failed at in the past. I’m afraid of being disappointed in myself. I’m afraid of being defeated by my fears. I know that nothing is actually as bad as I think it is and to prove that to myself, I must break the ice of fear that’s stopping me from living my life. I want to start breaking that ice no matter what. I’ve had the idea that I’m wasting my life in my head for a long time now and I know I’ll have it until I make some changes. I don’t want to feel like I’m wasting my life and that’s why I’m trying to do everything that I can. The progress is slow but every small step is precious. I don’t want to feel guilty if getting out of bed is everything I feel like doing today, I’ve had days when I couldn’t do it because I just wanted to sleep my pain away. But I don’t want to do that anymore because that’s not the way to change my world. My world is not gonna change while I’m sleeping. It’s gonna be dark, unhappy and bitter until I do something to lighten it up. So I tell myself ”acknowledge your small steps and cherish them.” Small steps count too because they lead to big changes. Fear is a part of every journey but it should never be bigger and stronger than my wish to feel better. I’ve said this many times before; life will keep being the same as long as we keep doing the same things over and over again. Maybe the things I’m afraid of are the things that are life-changing. Every idea that is the opposite of every awful emotion that I feel on a daily basis is an idea worth turning into a plan. I tell myself ”follow your vision and your plan, focus on it and start doing it. It doesn’t matter if it’s 2 AM or 5 PM, make a change every time you feel that energy inside of you.” I must write down every positive thought that randomly comes into my mind. Today’s positive thought is valid and it’s encouraging. Today’s positive thought could keep me going tomorrow. Tomorrow’s positive thought could encourage me to try something that could change my depression-adapted routine. People rarely care about what I’ve been through or how much I’ve have struggled in the past. I want to give myself the support and applause I once expected from others. My goal is to learn to love myself and my life and to live in peace without having other people’s approval. ‘If you try hard enough you will succeed’; yes this is true but it’s only true when the situation is entirely about me. If other people are involved but not as interested as me, I want to learn when is the right time to stop trying. I have hurt myself way too much by trying to forgive, forget and find excuses for mistakes that were done by someone I truly loved. No matter how much I love someone, I know that distancing myself from those individuals is required when I know my goal is to be mentally healthier. While trying to make some progress, I must occupy myself with happy thoughts, occupy myself with things I love doing and overthinking about a broken trust is definitely not one of them. I must accept it, leave it somewhere behind and move on with my life. I must keep in mind that life is so much more than every negative emotion I deal with on a daily basis. I must carry that reminder with me everywhere I go. I must stay strong so that one day when I’m happy and content with my life, I can look back at everything I will have gone through and say that I’m there because I believed in my happy thoughts which became my reality.

I’m almost there.

Love, Albesa