by Sienna Rose Mabuti
Keep yourself busy if you want to avoid depression. For me, inactivity is the enemy.
-Matt Lucas, comedian
Diving into this mental health problem is like drowning without water but with the same type of breathlessness. Depression is defined by the American Psychiatric Association as a serious medical illness that negatively affects how one feels, thinks, and acts. It causes extreme sadness and may trigger suicidal thoughts. In a study conducted by the World Health Organization, it has been shown that the rate of depression worldwide ranged from 2.6% to 29.5%
One of those who have swum the vast and deep ocean of depression is Janylle Chelsea “Jyll” Flores. She is a BS Psychology student of College of the Holy Spirit of Tarlac who describes herself as resilient. According to her, she thinks that her first heartbreak in high school caused her depression. She and her ex-boyfriend have been in a relationship for a year and a month before they broke up and her parents were disappointed of her getting involved in a relationship and for her low remarks in class. Her depression triggered her suicidal thoughts every night and she called and considered herself terrible and worthless.
Time, as they said, heals all wounds and the same thing happened with Jyll. Only, she has learned that it takes not only a day or weeks to heal. It may take a couple of months or even years. She dedicated her time and attention to her passions which includes painting, drawing, and writing. She also represents herself similar to a mermaid who is in love with the bodies of water. Jyll was inspired to continue her life and to conquer depression thanks to her family, a few friends, and her current boyfriend Adrian.
Last 2016 was her year of realization. Jyll got published in the Young Blood column of the Philippine Daily Inquirer twice. She became the layout artist of their batch’s yearbook and she was able to watch her favorite band—The 1975 live. For her, success meant being able to make her loved ones proud. She stated, “I succeed in life when I make people, even the ones who I do not know, feel that they deserve love and happiness”.
“To the people who are battling against their own mental health, life will be chaotic and absurd, but you have to keep going.” – Jyll Flores
Depression, like the ocean, can be one minute calm and the next with big waves and roaring thunders. It’s like you’re physically here on earth but you don’t feel like living your life—you’re just simply existing. Depression is not wanting to live anymore because you feel like the whole world is against you. It seems like wherever you go, you’re carrying something heavy. But one thing is for sure, it’s either you wave those mermaid tails and swim out or choose to drown in it for the rest of your life and Janylle Chelsea have taught us that swimming out of this ocean is possible as long as you hold on tight and let yourself heal.
“To the people who are battling against their own mental health, life will be chaotic and absurd, but you have to keep going. You have to stand up for your family, for those who care about you, and most especially for yourself. The world will not be the same without you. You are never alone. Ask for help if you need one. Healing is a beautiful thing. And I hope you get to experience it.” (Flores, 2016)