“It is so hard to be young and hurting, it’s so hard to be old and hurting, it’s so hard to hurt.”
By Elsa Kennedy
Fiction. Based on a True Relationship with Pain.
This journal entry is inspired by true events. Some of the characters, names, businesses, incidents, and certain locations and events have been fictionalized for dramatic purposes. Any similarity to the name, character or history of any person is entirely coincidental and unintentional.
Trigger Warning: our program often motivates people to discuss their trauma. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, please, take a step back to address emotional flashbacks and trauma before continuing to push yourself. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911 or the National Suicide Hotline at (1-800) 273-8255.
I’m young. I know. But I still hurt. I’ve still lived through immense pain that maybe a matured soul hasn’t.
Do not undervalue my pain.
Do not make me feel like my pain is not real.
I feel it in every part of me.
Inside my organs and outside on my skin.
Do you think I want to feel it?
If I invented it, I would have broken it up into pieces and thrown it out with the trash years ago.
But the pain has been there since I was a teenager. And every year it just gets worse.
People say I cling to the pain for attention. Hah! If that were the case I wouldn’t have to beg my mother for help; I wouldn’t have to beg my sister for solace. I wouldn’t have to take so many pills. I wouldn’t have to go to doctors and therapists.
Attention is not my motivation. In fact, I escape it.
Whenever people ask me about anything—my health, my school, my work—I say all is good. Even to my therapist. That may cause more harm than good. However, it’s because rather than attention, what everyone really expresses is pity. I despise pity.
It adds to my pain. And I remove anything that adds to my pain from my life.
Well . . . I try to have it removed. There are things that I just can’t take out yet.
The pills cause me pain, yet they help ease it. They add to my addiction, but I need them to survive. My body does not know how to live off pills.
My body causes me pain, yet it allows me to stand and walk.
My depression causes me pain, but I haven’t been able to remove that yet.
I wish it would be that easy. Removing depression and living a life of happiness. How amazing does that sound?
It’s not that easy, though. Depression is entangled in every part of me. I can feel it in the morning, I can feel it in the afternoon, I can feel it at night. It has become the most consuming thing in my life.
I struggle to fight it every single second, and sometimes I win. God, those wins feel so good. I am proud of myself.
But the losses . . . those torment me.
I am so tired of hurting.