I was recently asked why I haven’t written lately and my answer was as quick and easy as could be – because “if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” I haven’t spoken up until now because I was afraid and embarrassed. “If I don’t like me right now, why would anybody else want to read about what I’m going through? I’m a mess!”
My brother reminded me that exploring the topics that made me feel vulnerable had a greater resonance in the people around me. When I was feeling down, I couldn’t get the idea out of my head that the only thing worth writing about was “living my best life”. It felt like inspiration only could come from positivity and milestones. Nope.
I originally started my blog in hopes of helping others… Share my journey with grief through natural healing, and as time has gone on – to share about my journey building a brand. There are lots of struggles with each of those items. But, no matter how hard it gets – there must be someone out there who is going through what I’m going through. So here is where I am…
For the last week, I have not been able to stop crying. When I’m not crying, I’m fighting the urge to cry. Why? Because I keep asking myself,
“WHAT’S THE POINT OF ANYTHING?”
I’ve struggled with depression for as far back as I can remember, and over the last 2 years, have often had thoughts of suicide – down to the decision of how I would do it. Lately, I’ve been in a dark place… Not the, “I can’t do this anymore, I don’t want to be here” kind of depression but because I feel that I have lost purpose, again.
What am I worried about? Making money. Why do I need money? To pay my bills. Why do I need a car? To get to the place where I make money. I know that tons of people go through this. It’s not like this is brand new or something. But these thoughts have never shaken me down to the core, wanting to get rid of everything I own and go jump on a boat to go travel the world. Call me intense, but I’ve seen far too many people in my life accomplish things I never imagined and acquire more wealth than I can fathom, but still be so unhappy or unsatisfied.
If you’re wondering, I am still working on my jewelry brand. But things have taken a turn. Being an entrepreneur in Los Angeles isn’t super lucrative when you don’t already “have it all.” On paper, it all sounds perfect – oh yea, I found an investor who wants to help me with my line and while I’m sorting through that, I work full time. But in all honesty, I got roped into believing that the “easy” path was the right one. An investor with buyers can have a thousand pieces each of my designs produced and we can quickly sell them – awesome! Well, from the beginning, I was hesitant about this direction. In a lot of cases, the cheapest, mass production happens overseas. By hands that I have not met. In environments that I cannot verify are up to my standards of working conditions for the good of humanity.This path led me to Vegas…
There I was, walking around JCK, the jewelry industry’s premier trade show – exactly where I wanted to be. Meeting sources and manufacturers from around the world… Attending educational seminars, learning about retail and the evolution of brick and mortar – listening to industry bloggers and how they built their platform loving the same beautiful trinkets that I’ve loved for so long…
And all I could think was – what is the point of jewelry in the world? Why am I here? Anxiety. Anxiety. Anxiety! I’ve been told before that my business helps people by making them feel beautiful but that’s not enough for me. What are the potential effects of producing my line?
It’s almost overwhelming enough to forget the other stresses in my life. Almost. For the first time in 30 years, I don’t have anywhere to call home. I’ve been hosted by my gracious friends who assure me I am welcome while I “figure things out” but honestly, I’ve gotten to the point of like,
“Will I ever figure it all out?”
Each time I come close to finding a place to settle into, major anxiety comes over me that it isn’t the right thing to do. Don’t commit. Then I get in my car and immediately break down because I want to call my mom. The last time I lived in LA, I spoke to her daily on my commutes around the city and now more than ever, she is who I want to talk all of this through with. Am I grieving or am I depressed? Well, both.
For the last month or so, I am constantly questioning everything I do. I’m having the hardest time making decisions. Even what I want for breakfast! Somehow, my self-confidence plummeted and I found myself not wanting to be around my friends because I felt like a burden. It’s only mildly humiliating to be curled up in a ball on the floor crying, with my friend looking at me like, “How do I help?” And all I can do is cry harder because I don’t know the answer.
Long story longer, things haven’t worked out as planned. My friends have been more than supportive in constantly telling me that they believe in me and that I will be successful. And instead of trusting the process, I took support as pressure and I broke down and stopped believing in myself. My daily meditation of being grateful for all that I am, for everything in my life that has unfolded, and for all that is yet to come – was getting further and further away from me.
Am I being selfish? Am I being lazy? Will I ever be satisfied? Am I too much for people? Is this all something more that I don’t even know? Is this all bottled up grief? Wait, what about grief? Have I taken time to think about Momma lately? What would she say to me?
Lisa Beth, follow your passion and catch your dreams!
Move forward, look up!
What makes you happy?
What are you grateful for?
Embrace this time.
It’s time to check myself and go back to the basics, again.
This is who I am and I’m not afraid to show it. It’s not all sparkles and unicorns but it’s real. Don’t be afraid to open up my heart about my fears and struggles. It’s not, look how great I’m doing. It’s sharing the stories of my transition. We all have struggle, I need to fight through it. Find the silver lining. The legacy that mom left me, and how much I miss her. Get back to the love of what I’m doing. Get back to the value of working hard.
Quality work, through passionate production. It goes into my work. It’s my base, it’s who I am. I have not built what I want, YET. But I have to keep trying. Longing for something more is okay. People are wired to want more. We are all in transition so let’s talk about it. I write because I want to connect people and connect WITH people.
I now have a line that I love and that I know others love, with sales under my belt. And I have endless opportunities to keep moving forward. Sometimes, it’s just about making myself follow those opportunities, even if I “don’t feel like it”.
I suffer from depression, there is nothing wrong with me – it’s okay to dig into existential crisis! Take the time to work through things, so that when I am successful, I feel good about it.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked at an incoming call and not wanted to pick up because I don’t feel good about the answers to the questions that I know are coming. But I answer anyway. And sometimes I break down crying, sometimes I sound like an asshole (for which I apologize for over and over,) and sometimes I simply say, I need a hug… Can I come over?
It’s through these tough conversations that I am reminded that I am surrounded by people who love me in so many different ways.
No matter how hard it is, or how deep of a dark hole I have fallen into – there is always light.
There is always support from those around me and YOU. Family, friends, complete strangers…
If you’re reading this and you’ve been through this or maybe cannot relate but can/want to help (not just me but others) – let’s share what resources are out there besides a suicide hotline. Not all of us are there. What helped you? Can we start raising awareness about more resources? Yes, we can google it but as social media is a powerful tool, I hope to see more information to help along with reading about others experiences. I believe I’m doing a good job of being transparent with the right friends helping me fight but I also think I’m to the point of needing more. Fighting anxiety, depression, addiction, and grief takes a lot more than spending an hour with a therapist once a week. I’ve been down that road on and off for 14 years.
And if you’re reading this and can relate to where I am, remember that when everything seems impossible, or pointless, don’t be afraid to reach out, because we are not alone.