HA. HA. HA. It only took about four years to finally understand that I can be happy and that I am worth it. In order to see the love and beauty that is out there and within me, I must understand my worth and get rid of my anger. I’ve come to understand that having a large heart isn’t necessarily a bad thing and being vulnerable with my feelings is okay. That being honest and fearless when the world seems hard at its edges is okay.
My name is Anisha Sharma. I am 24 years old, born in Port Alberni, Canada but raised in New Jersey (sadly). From a young age I always had this piercing anger to go ahead and be the best and get things done right my way. To prove that no one could undermine me because I was the strongest. See the thing is I grew up in a very male dominated family, where a woman's voice was rarely heard…so I made it a point to be heard because I’d be damned if my voice was shut before it could even be heard. But that took a wrong turn into anger and frustration.
This anger and frustration carried up until college. That’s when I finally realized that I came across as aggressive, rude, and someone no one truly wanted to be around at times when I was caught up in my anger. I was somehow the life of the party with such a bubbly and content personality, and yet also the worst person to have present when anger struck me. Instead of listening to everyone’s opinions, I chose to push myself to be alone and bottle all my emotions. The way that I was when my emotions overtook made me think that the opinions I had during this served no purpose. That my voice shouldn’t be heard even if it was rational; it’s not like anything wise would be spoken, so better to keep it shut. I drowned myself in these thoughts until it completely overtook me.
I caged my emotions up so much that it caused insecurities to rise; I began to hate every single part of myself, and I made it a point to remind myself everyday how horrible I was. I hated the way I spoke, the way I walked, the way I talked, the way I looked, and, mostly, who I came off as. Thoughts would fill my head every day with negativity, putting myself down every chance I got. Why couldn’t I sound more sophisticated with my words? Why couldn’t I be less masculine and more feminine? Why couldn’t I do better? Why couldn’t I be better? I let these thoughts destroy me.
Depression had weakened me so much that waking up in the morning was a surprise. Why wasn’t I dead yet? I spent drives to school or work thinking of how I could be in an accident at any moment and it would end it all. My depression truly destroyed me. It was a silent depression that led me to such a breakdown that it resulted in cutting and a suicide attempt. That wasn't it though. I still couldn’t figure it out. I quietly cleaned my wounds the next morning and headed to work as if I didn’t just have a the worst mental breakdown of my life.. As if the fact of what I attempted was normal as any other Monday. When I realized harming wasn’t going to do anything I resulted to drinking away my problems. Whether it was abusing alcohol with my friends at bars or grabbing bottles of wine to drink at home alone. I thought I’d never come out of it.
It took a spiraling nightmare of four years to realize depression shouldn’t be taking such a hold of me. To come to terms with the fact that I needed to let go of certain people that only brought upon more darkness in my life and that being alone was okay. I’ve come to terms with seeing that being alone and in my thoughts isn’t horrifying, it’s actually rather peaceful.It’s taken so much to realize my self worth. To realize that just because someone is smarter than me, it doesn’t entail that I am below them. To realize I am human and it's a complicated, messy and confusing concept. To realize I must be brave; it’s the quietest thing you’ll ever know. Don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t mean I am the strongest person you’ll ever meet or that I feel no sadness anymore. I still have my moments of self doubt and sadness, however, I’ve come to be less harsh with myself and realize it’s okay. Self worth is getting up in the morning and understanding, with a heavy heart, that you will make it through today, you just need to take one step at a time. *Cue Jordin Sparks*.
My name is Anisha Sharma and this is my Project Why.