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The light at the end of the tunnel

Thursday, February 7th, 2008

Shortly after attempting suicide at the age of 17, I was diagnosed with severe clinical depression and saw a wonderful psychologist. He explained depression to me in a way that keeps me hanging on when the going gets rough.

He said that depression is like being in a dark tunnel with no light. Although there is always a light at the end of every tunnel, we often can’t see that light because the tunnel is too long. But each day is a step forward towards that light and if we keep plugging away, we will eventually see the light at the end of the tunnel.

I had been struggling with undiagnosed depression since I was 12 years old, which made my tunnel of depression a journey that lasted over five years. But he was right; eventually I could see the light at the end of the tunnel. With that experience in the back of my head, I always know that eventually the light will come. It’s just a matter of time.

This Christmas when I spiraled into another bout of depression, I reminded myself that even in the darkness, even when I can’t see it, there is light waiting for me at the end. After just over a month, I can finally see that speck of light waiting for me at the end of the tunnel and I know that if I just hold on a little longer, I’ll break out into the light again.