Le Voyage Novel Thoughts

Novel Thoughts | Penelope and Depression

No one knows better than I do about how much I used to hate myself, right to my soul.


The worst thing about hating myself was that it felt like everyone hated me just as much. That’s how depression takes hold of you. Depression is a magnificent liar. I was great at it myself but I’ve only been in the world for twenty-four years.  Depression on the other has had centuries of experience in dragging a person through a dark alley during a night without the moon’s light.

I hated myself so much, the sight of my face was disgusting to me and I was desperate to defile every bit of it in every way I could.

Pills. Anorexia. Overeating. Insomnia. Cutting—all over the body from the extremely visible to the invisible. Name it, I’ve probably resorted to it.

I think stigmas exist in mental illnesses like depression because people have a hard time listening to those struggling. All they hear is “I’m so sad” and not “I try to tell myself everything will be okay but my brain just isn’t registering the word okay“.

It’s obvious by now that I’m definitely someone who’s struggling every day to battle my demons. I’ve gotten better at handling my patience towards people who aren’t putting the effort to listen even though they ask the most questions. Still, I have moments when a dark cloud rises over my head enough to let me feel that same surge of anger and disappointment. I still feel resentment.

I hated looking at myself. I was ashamed of me more than I was of the people I resented and I resented everyone. Pretty is an ugly word. It’s not supposed to be but to me it is. All I ever had to a lot of people was my pretty face. Let’s not look at her ambitions, her efforts, and the talent.

If you’re in pain and someone tells you not to, come to me. Just cry it out. Keep crying. I can honestly say, tears are not a sign of weakness. Embrace your feelings and don’t lock them up. We are human because of these feelings. If someone puts you down, come to me. I’ll tell you, not to appease you or anything but just because it’s the truth, trying is a wonderful action. Not trying is just as bad, if not more, as giving up.

My depression tells me I am not loved. Have you ever seen the film, Penelope? (If not, here’s a SPOILER alert. It’s okay to turn back now… but knowing the end to this post doesn’t take away from the beauty of the story.)

Penelope, 2007

It’s a wonderful movie featuring Christina Ricci and James McAvoy. It’s about a girl cursed with pig facial features, deemed as a monster by society and her own parents.

By the end of the day, it’s your reflection, not your mother’s or father’s or guardian. It’s not the face of your friends, siblings, or idol. It’s just you. And you should be enough for you.

The lesson or realization I received from this movie as I rewatch it for the nth time is that loving myself is the greatest thing I could ever gift myself. My love for me is enough to suppress the depression that tells me otherwise.


Who I am from here on out, I hope, will never be dependent on anything but my pursuit of happiness because it’s my right to live my life the way I see fit to do so.

I’ve hated a lot of things for a long period of time. People I love have seen and felt that hatred in ways I meant and didn’t mean to say and do. No one knew how much I hated myself and how much that hatred translated into hating them. All the negativity that flowed through my body, the negativity that I drank and breathed came out it all sorts of ways that only fed the fire. Depression is a deep well. It’s a long way back up but an easy way down.

 Love yourself and know that I love you.

I’ve only just started to do so and it’s a beautiful feeling.

What I’m truly asking for you to do is to set aside everyone else. Don’t wait for them to say yes to you. The most important thing is your approval of yourself. Say yes to you.

But it’s always a long journey and it’s okay to take your time. I sure did.

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  1. I am so pleased to read this, to know you are learning to how important it is to love YOU … Life is cyclic, although we are raised to think otherwise. It is not one long carnival ride, we must get on and off. Hurt, heal, laugh, cry … Hold each day in wonder ! Sending you love, wisdom and courage for your journey…

    1. Thank you very much! I was surprised myself when I finished writing how much I’ve grown in the past months. It’s so wonderful. And again, thank you.

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