Masa Everybody makes mistakes. This is a common reminder used to help us navigate through life without beating ourselves up. If only it were that easy. At least for me, it was not. It is not easy to build someone up who has been broken down for so long. I didn’t know how much of a problem my negativity was until up to last year. When I say negative, I don’t mean towards others. I mean towards myself. It was so much a part of my character that I just took it as me being rational. I’ve never had many special gifts, but one thing I have is a good memory. This has been a blessing and a curse. I love the feeling of reflecting upon the tiny steps I’ve made in my life to get here…until they become clouded with all the missteps I’ve made. I still remember the shortcomings and how it affected me then. I still remember how people made me feel for making them. I still remember who kicked me when I was down, and who brought me down to begin with. No one is born with self-hate, it is learned. I grew up with many people telling me who I was before even discovering for myself. Most of it were not great things. I was reminded of how lazy I was when I brought back a bad report card. I was reminded of how my intellect was not up to par with other kids. I soon became quiet and would never raise my hand out of fear of being laughed at for a “stupid” question. I ended up receiving C’s and D’s because to me, I was not smart enough to do any better. I’ve heard so many negative things about myself that I started to believe it. It seemed like every day, I was being ridiculed of for all my flaws and mistakes. This was the case both in school and out of school. There was no escape from it, so I started to absorb it. I started to rationalize my failure by telling myself that I wasn’t smart, and everyone that formed the same opinion towards me would only confirm it. This would only send me into a deeper pit of self-doubt. Asma I try my hardest to stay happy and forget about all those bad feelings and thoughts that enveloped me. But they keep on coming back to me and it gets merciless every time. I couldn’t handle it. It was too much. I went and asked my mom if I could seek out for professional help, when I thought my own mother would accept my proposal she didn’t she shut me down and instead shuns me for even thinking about “embarrassing” her by telling a stranger my problems. I went to my eldest sister thinking she might help. She laughed and told me “aren’t you too young to be depressed? You should be grateful that you’re living in stress free generation” I instantly felt down she was my sister and I trusted her but instead my cry for help was rejected. I felt neglected by my family and I started to believe that there was no way they would believe me anymore. But I knew that I couldn’t give up, so I went and tried again with my mom, this time I was full on crying, sobbing with snot coming out of my nose talking to her about how I’m feeling with raw words. She did feel guilty but still she wouldnt not agree to my request (asma and masa together) In a year I got better and worse I started to accept the fact that I must support myself and I was thankful enough to have my friend’s support too. I then realized this whole time that in order to fight this depression I need to love myself but how can I? Well it wasn’t that easy to find the solution, but I did find it. I found out that for me to love myself I should know myself first. I should know what I truly like and dislike, what my morals are, how I want to live. Then everything started to unravel, and I discovered my true authentic self which was a sigh of relief and a cleanse really. I felt like I was on top of the world, I was able to love myself so that means I could fight my depression now. Well it’s not that easy but I know that I’m a step closer to finally closing that dark chapter in my life.