Like I said in my first post, when I first got here, it was a bit difficult for me to adjust. And honestly, I’m not sure why because it wasn’t my first time away from home or friends. I guess it’s because I thought I was coming to a city where I knew absolutely no one and considering it wasn’t the normal 4-5 month semester anymore but an entire year… but then, these are just speculations, I still don’t know what the exact reason was but I know I felt very alone and depressed pretty much all the time. It might’ve just been devil trying to vex me.
Anyhoo, I’m not sure of the details but I believe a new set of corps members are going to camp on Monday- tomorrow (blame Nigeria for the uncertainty, so unpredictable) and I thought it might help to share some of the things that helped me deal with these feelings. And for the brother or sister struggling with depression, this might help also.
- Make friends- this part wasn’t fun for me. I like making friends but I think I’m done with that phase in my life where it’s easy for me. In high school most of the people you meet barely have an identity. They’re all really just going with the motions trying to figure themselves out. So a group of five girls can develop similar characters and be friends forever because they bonded over – high school musical or something else. These friends you’ve known since high school would understand your inside jokes and would likely have been with you through thick and thin!
But at the post-college phase, while I might like your sense of humor, I might not be able to stand other sides of you and then what happens? Will we now be joking every time?
Not to sound too spiritual or anything but as young people, and people generally, you need to pray about relationships before you walk into them- be it on a romantic or at the friendship level. God knew I was too lazy to start looking for friends so he sent me amazing people who’ve taken care of my emotional needs… and I’m sure you know I’m quite needy! Dear NYSC family, ya’ll are the real MVPs.
Really friendship is about synergy. You would probably not like everything I do or am! But if we work really hard at it, if you think a friendship is worth the time, go for it! Fight, Make up, be Humble, Understand that sometimes you won’t have it your way and it’s not the end of the world!
- Connect with other people in a similar situation. For me, this was other corps members. I think this helped me not to feel too alone. Knowing that other people are going through and are feeling the things I’m feeling. Whenever I would feel symptoms of depression I’d call one up and suggest we hang out or go see a movie and just talk over the phone. Basically try not be alone!
- Finally, and I think this contributed a great deal to my not being too sad about this NYSC thing, JOIN A DEPARTMENT IN CHURCH!! Or maybe in your case a group or something but I joined a church department and soon, they became my new family. They’ll probably never know how much they helped me because as much as I wanted to be with my new friends or other corpers, it was really becoming exhausting and there’s something about being a part of something bigger than yourself.- part of a system. I believe the best place to find the best people are in the presence of God, joining a church department made all the difference.
I really hope this helps someone through something today!
If you’ve been in any of those ‘alone’ situations, help a soul and share how you got through it in the comment box below!!
IG + Twitter- @El_Freedah