We’ve still got over two months of this year left, but I’m already looking back on 2015 in wonder and love. During the past year, I believe that I’ve changed and grown as a person more than any other time in my life thus far. I have faced fears, made friends, discovered a new home, and accepted myself, all in the last 10 months.

At the beginning of the year, I was a girl who hated herself, someone who constantly thought the only way out would be through suicide, someone who calmed herself by carving in to her skin. I barely left the house and cried myself to sleep every night. I didn’t think I would ever get out of the black hole I was in. But, with the help of a multitude of things and people, I have come out the other side. Of course the black dog that is depression is still there, and the anxiety will always be a part of me, but those things are no longer screaming at me to notice them.

What helped me the most was therapy, something I was terrified to start. It took me months to finally be able to open up to my therapist Georgia. On top of that I started taking antidepressants. Both of these things helped improve my depression and anxiety immensely. My confidence has grown, and I have been able to do many things that I couldn’t have a year ago, such as going to GirlCon and starting a new college—both experiences that have allowed me to meet people and find new friends. It’s also meeting these new people that has helped me become a better person, a better feminist, and the out queer woman I am today. ♦