As I was lying in bed in that dazed state of half asleep and half awake, these thoughts came to my mind.
Do you know how loved you are, Chewie? Do you know how much you do? You aren’t just a little loved. You aren’t just sometimes needed. You are incredibly loved and always needed.
I feel very blessed to be so loved and needed. I know that people appreciate me. At work, I have a stack of thank you and recognition cards for all the things I have done (and those are just the ones that are written down). My phone has dozens of saved messages from people thanking me for kind things I have done or simply for being their friend. My Facebook is filled with gratitude from people whose lives I have saved or changed for the better. My desk is filled with letters from friends. My life is filled with love.
I am loved and appreciated everywhere I go. People notice the good I do and they recognize my efforts and goodness and dedication. It is almost strange to think that someone who is so loved, so appreciated, so valuable, considers themselves to be so lonely, so desolate, and so worthless.
I ask myself, why do you not see what everyone else does? You are obviously loved. Look at the evidence. The cruelest person in your life is yourself. Everyone else sees goodness in you, and they love you for it.
Why do I want to die when I am so loved? Why do I want to hurt myself when I have done so much good?
The answer comes down to a simple fact. Mental illness is just what the name says, illness. This sickness of the mind doesn’t just make me sad as some people may believe about depression. Mental illness is sickness because it literally changes your healthy thoughts into unhealthy thoughts. I don’t just push away good thoughts. I desperately cling to good thoughts as my mind warps all thoughts into things that hurt me.
I am loved. I am wanted. I am needed. I am appreciated. I am not alone.
I don’t think these thoughts very often, but this morning as I lie in bed, I feel the truth of these words. Maybe tonight I will feel sick again and like the flu that won’t go away, I will feel the heaviness of my body and the inability to do all that is required of me, but right now, I see the truth. I am loved. I am not alone.
I am grateful to truly believe that this morning.