“You got OCD or something?” he asked jokingly as I scrubbed away at the utensil no one ever seemed to clean enough.
I laughed. “No, I just really want to get this clean. But I do have depression and anxiety.”
“What’s a pretty, little girl like you got to be depressed about?”
I paused, avoiding his gaze. A small smile found its way to my lips. “That’s a very good question,” I replied in a quiet voice.
He shrugged apologetically. “Sorry, I shouldn’t have asked that.”
“No, it’s fine, really.”
He gave me a huge grin. “So what kind of flowers should I get my girlfriend? She really likes pink, but I don’t want to give her anything too cliché.”
For the rest of my shift I tried my best to help him prepare for his date, despite not being experienced in the romantic department at all. My drive home was a silent one. I found myself unable to turn on the radio and sing along cheerfully as I usually do. His question haunted me.
What’s a pretty, little girl like you got to be depressed about?
As I lay in bed, I contemplated this. It really was a good question, one that I would really like to know the answer to. What was it exactly that caused me to reach out and ask for help over two years ago?
Maybe it was that there is nothing pretty or little about my reflection in my eyes. Maybe it was that there was nothing kind about the words I say to myself when I think no one is listening. Maybe it was those dark thoughts that dig their claws into my mind and won’t let go.
But others have it much worse. Are you really worthy of that stigma?
Once again the poison bleeds into my thoughts. Do I really have anything to be depressed about? Am I really deserving of my bimonthly sessions?
Guilt for wanting to get better. Guilt for asking for help. Guilt for being open about my struggles. Is that really something to feel guilty of?
Yes, there are others who need help more than me. Yes, there are those who won’t ever receive the help they need. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t need help either. That doesn’t mean that I don’t have depression.
So what have I to be depressed about?
Well, that’s a very good question.