Two years ago today I was depressed, critically underweight, heavily drugged and utterly hopeless.
Two years ago today I was lying in a bed in a Swiss psych ward.
Two years ago today I’d have given anything not wake up in the morning.
And my wish almost became a reality.
Fourteen years of hell were finally getting to me and I didn’t have any energy left, no more power to fight, no more willingness to move on, no more strength to be happy and hopeful.
I was empty and I couldn’t keep on doing what I had been doing for so very long.
Today, everything’s different. Today, I love my life. Today, I am free. Today, I am happy.
Today, I’m traveling all over the world. I’m privileged to work with women who struggle with themselves, their bodies and their lives. Today, I’m of service to the world and I love every minute of it.
More than that, today I’m living proof that hope is real.
The last two years have been more than I could’ve ever wished for. Yes, they have been marked by super low lows. But they have also been marked by extremely high highs.
I wanted to give up more than once, but I didn’t. I couldn’t.
There was this one stream of hope in my life that just wouldn’t let me go. There was my army of angels, my community of friends and family who would not let me fail. People, who wrote to me, called me, visited me, prayed for me, held me, cheered me on and gave me the occasional kick in the butt. People who reminded me I belonged, I mattered and I was loved.
I’ve learned a lot during those hard times and the one thing that I now know for sure is that life without a community of friends, without a solid tribe is no life at all.
I always thought that I was destined to live life alone. I always believed that I liked being on my own, doing what I do. Oh, how wrong I was; how very, very wrong I was.
The more I retreated from friends the sicker I got. The less I engaged with other people the louder my voices inside my head became, the more scared of life I got and the less fun I had.
Now, I’m not saying that being on your own doesn’t have its benefits, it certainly does. There are many occasions when being alone is the best thing for you and there’s a certain clarity you often have when you’re by yourself. But once being alone becomes a regular “thing” or even your entire life, something’s gone very wrong.
You see, there’s a big difference between being independent and being lonely. There’s a difference between enjoying your own company and being terrified of people. There’s a difference between fighting your fights alone or doing so with an army of angels who support your every move.
Today, if you feel like life is not worth living, if you feel that there is no hope, no light, no love, then hear this message and know that there is hope. There is a way out of your heartache, your pain and your hopeless situation. There is a life of happiness waiting for you.
And it all begins by reaching out to others.
About Anne-Sophie Reinhardt
Anne-Sophie Reinhardt is a body-confidence expert, self-love advocate and the author of The Ultimate Guide to a Healthy Body Image. Join her newsletter and receive your free three-part video series empowering you to accept yourself wholeheartedly.