This is an article written by PumpUp member @geek_getfit
At the age of 10, I was in counselling for depression. I was only 10, and I wanted to kill myself. At that period of time, I was hit multiple times a day at school, shoved into walls, I had people threatening to kill me, and a student wrapping their hands around my neck and shaking me. I was too small to defend myself and I couldn’t take it anymore. I remember the day I ran crying to my mom because I was so afraid to go to school. It got so bad I had to be pulled out of school and put into counselling, where they diagnosed me with depression and heightened anxiety.
Over the next couple of years, I did return to that same school and experienced a different type of bullying: sexual harassment. I can remember my 8th grade year like it was yesterday, but one night stands out in particular. On the way home from a national academic quiz tournament called the Scholars Bowl, two boys who groped at my chest while I was sitting on the bus. I became constantly worried about what would happen next, and increasingly became insecure about my appearance. My depression deepened when I was called a ‘slut’ and ‘whore’ whenever I wore a V-neck t-shirt or when I would not let boys touch me.
When I entered high school, I found PumpUp. I had heard a lot of great things about it, so I decided to give the app a try. I started working out twice a day using PumpUp- needless to say I fell in love with fitness. My stress began to disappear, my anxiety was at bay, and my depression was easier to handle. I spend my summer running, biking, and working out - I was so much happier.
Here I am at this present moment: a 15 year-old freshman, an honor student, the class president, an athlete on varsity sports teams, and a cheerleader. Depression can drive you crazy. I workout to relieve the stress from my everyday life at school, to relax, and to keep myself sane. I haven’t let my past stop me from being the best I can. I still continue to be sexually harassed, especially while I am cheering, but I have learned to ignore the boys. Yes, I still get bullied a lot, but I just have to let it go because I know those people won’t matter later on in my life. My past may haunt me, but I am not going to let it hold me back.
TO ANYBODY WITH DEPRESSION OR ANXIETY
Please keep your head up, I know that it may feel impossible to get out of bed on some mornings, but do it anyways. Tell that voice in your head that says “You can’t” to sit down and shut up. You will get through this, and if you think no one believes in you, you are wrong- I BELIEVE IN YOU. You can do this. You are beautiful/handsome, strong (though you may not realize it yet), the bravest person alive, and you can do anything.