Life introduced me to depression in the second grade. My parents decided to pull us out of the only school I’d ever known and move us to another city. Halfway through the school year. I was placed in an unsafe environment and I was clearly marked as the enemy. 

Both boys and girls picked on me and started fights at recess. I felt completely alone. I withdrew inside myself.

I lived in full-fledged depression starting my 8th grade year. I joined the football team a quarter of the way into the season, hoping to fit in better if I was “one of the guys”. Instead, they targeted me during practice and tried to hurt me every chance they could .

It got so bad I left school to homeschool halfway through the year. I spent the next four months watching ten year old videos of a class in Florida and eating microwaveable mac and cheese. The only upside was getting to watch Mama’s Family and WKRP during lunch.

I tried another school in 9th grade because my one and only friend was going there. But he became popular quickly and stopped talking to me. I crawled into a little hole and stopped allowing people to know me.

I demonstrated my depression by choosing the empty table in the cafeteria and refusing to allow sympathetic older girls to pity me. But I was alone. And I knew it. No friends anywhere.

I had a couple moments of popularity years after high school, but they didn’t last.

I spent most of college being sneered at by other guys. I honestly don’t know what it was about me. Maybe I wore rejection on my face and that encouraged guys to pounce. 

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