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The Battle against Depression, The War for a greater Future




Hello. My name is Luis Zeno Jr, but most of you have known me as Xeno. And I have suffered from depression for a very long time. I have never taken medication to ease the symptom, fearing that it would make it worse, and I see a therapist at times about my emotions, seeing if there is really something wrong with me and what I can do to change myself. I work at an auto retail store, selling parts, managing inventory, helping with mechanics, and delivering parts, taking online courses for a bachelor's degree in Game Design, and stream on my days off a variety of retro video games and maybe some modern video games when I am with my friends.


I had depression when I was in High School but I never noticed it at that time. When I was around 16 or 17, I wanted to cut myself because I was severly stressed out. I figure if I were to leave a mark on my skin, mostly an X mark on my face, I would look like a protagonist in a video game, not realizing that it’s wrong. Luckly, I saw a student counselor at my high school who talked me out about doing such heinous things to myself, and even witnessed the dangers of cutting oneself with my first ex. I never knew what I was doing, but I was in pain and needed help. I needed someone. 


My depression grew worse after my first college degree, trying to join in various groups but to no success. And even if I have joined a group to do events or gaming, it crumples apart, either due to money or ego. I was dating my second ex at that time, and took a job at an airport handling luggages and transportation. I felt like I wasn’t doing enough for the both of us, and I wasn’t able to join a maid cafe because I wasn’t good enough. The thought of not being good enough at all made me feel as if I shouldn’t be here, feeling that I need to end it as soon as possible. I first consider suicide via train tracks, yet something kept me from making that initial move. I didn’t want it to end at all. Maybe it was because I just started Pro Wrestling training and the guys there were amazing. Maybe it was because I just started dating after a year of breaking up and this is too soon. Maybe it was because there was something worth fighting for. Whatever it was, I just kept pushing on, getting money to pay off my bills while training on a certain day, and trying to make time with my last girlfriend. 


I thought I was happy, and figured in my own world things would be alright. But there is a saying that nothing lasts forever. After hearing my ex wanted to go and live in Japan, I felt shattered, thinking she didn’t care about me at all. I tried my best to figure out a way to compromise things, figure we could have a place of our own and try to work things out. It was her dream to live in Japan and escape the United States, always posting how much she hated it because of the violence and crime the US has, preferably in The Bronx, and never seen any possible way of having a job here with her degree. I never really had a plan except to make it as a Pro Wrestler and travel the world, which has always been my dream no matter which career I went for. I wanted to travel too, but I was in debt and fear that if I don’t resolve my money problems I won’t have a place to live, especially since I live with my parents. 


Despite this, I stuck by my ex, wanting to spend as much time as I can. I didn’t think it was a mistake nor was I doing wrong, and I always see she is a great way to ease my stress, having her by my side and holding her close. However, my anger and emotions get the best of me. I never really had a good relationship with my sister, and never really enjoy being around her since she has been making me feel bad about myself and my situation. After one stressful argument later with her while doing my daily task, I took it out on my ex and screwed up her date, getting blamed for not being with her friends and having been called clingy. After years of listening to her dark secret, having personal time with her that I never had done with anyone, doing solids, and even spending a lot, I just lost it and decided to delete her off social media and phone, not understanding that we just needed a break. It was the straw that broke the camel's back and sadly we slowly broke up. We had done one more outing on my birthday, but even then she wanted to visit a friend at a party who is set to leave the next day to China, and even looking at her, I felt like I was a burden, preventing her from doing something she wanted to do and even encourage her to leave now and make it to the party. Afterwards, things ended and it was pretty painful.


Around that time, I was given the manager promotion, something I wasn’t ready for admittedly, and had to deal with new co-workers who were either lazy or disrespectful. I couldn’t handle it and the backlash I got from my boss was too much. Add in getting injured with a concussion at my training and my life was in shambles, with nothing but scowl remarks from my family about my injury, my ex not checking up on me, and my job being crappy. That’s when I felt I needed to end it once again. I even plot about causing an auto accident in hope that maybe, maybe things might turn around if I survive. But once again, fate has stated that this wasn’t the way. This wasn’t what was meant to be and it would have been terrible if I am around, but the people around me who I got involved inadvertently aren't.


I played a lot of video games and even took a hiatus because there wasn’t anything interesting in the new generation, The PS5, XboxOne, and Nintendo Wii U, and didn’t feel like I had time to play video games. I took a gamble after my second graduation and decided to get myself a PS5 and some games and soon learn about streaming online. I started off small and figured I would have made it big time if I just keep on going, maybe my friends from the past would come along and see me play. While I never got too serious about it, I continued on with getting upgrades to my stream, a new laptop, new microphone, new camera, and just kept on going. I was told about a community of streamers that I ought to join in and opted to do so, since I wanted to make friends and meet different streamers while hoping they would come over, but being that is in the United Kingdom and I don’t stream until late at night, it’s totally understandable that this won’t happen. The group, The British Nerd Network but known today as both Ember Gaming Community and The Forge. 


I was excited to meet some many different people overseas and was at first timid but slowly happy to see their amazing attitude. A couple of months into the group, my depressing side came along, feeling down about not getting enough viewers, my ex, and my career, how it’s going nowhere. I even at one point felt like suicide was the only way out. This sets off an alarm to the members and they instantly console me, to the point when one directly said to me “You are not feeling well. You need help” Just like that, it struck me like Thor’s hammer and man did it stuck to me. I asked a friend about finding a counselor and she helped me out, even feeling concerns about me and my depression.


I mostly get depressed because I feel as if I am alone. That no one wants to chat with me or even check on me. What is worse is that I wondered if my ex would even message me once again, maybe have a chat and talk to me. After hearing where she is, I thought that I focus on myself and try to work on my pro wrestling career and streaming as well, not worried about her since she is miles away from me and we have no way to contact one another. I figure she didn’t care and I shouldn’t as well. I dated a few times, and even thought I was going to have a relationship with someone, but my one track mind pretty much screwed up and the depression of being rejected kicked in, even to the point when her words “You are an adult. Figure it out.” stung me like a diseased infected mosquito filled with responsibility, irony, and other metaphors. Add in that my ex somehow returned to American, and things are going for a tailspin. It came to the point when my father would come over to me and have a talk, telling me to forget women focus on myself. No point in killing myself over someone who doesn’t want me, which caught me by surprise since my father isn’t really Father of the Year material and hasn’t really been there for me much of my years. 


When I felt things weren't going well, I took the offer from my medical clinic and decided to see a therapist, fearing that my personal needs are preventing me from having a happy life, preventing me from meeting other people, and preventing me from being myself. When I met my therapist, I thought to myself, ‘oh great, I am going to be hopped on the pills soon.’ To my surprise, I wasn’t given the treatment but I did get diagnosed with mild depression and anxiety, hearing the tone of my voice and my uncomfortable attention to her. In fact, she does her best to schedule around my work schedule and made efforts to contact me despite my lack of responding back. She actually wanted to help me and I would soon put my effort to talk to her and tell her how I feel. She even helped me solve my problem about my ex and offered me to try something new with meeting someone new.


Having depression pretty much sucks. It’s like the world is against you and nobody around is there to save you. You are sinking closer and closer to the dark side and the need to take the high road is slowly narrowing down to a dead end, forcing you to stoop to their level or just take a life and leave. Even the people you want to hear from may not be there, and the people who are available might not be good enough, or might be too scared to talk to them. It’s almost as if it is the “ME” show and not about them, making it so tiring and so repetitive. Yet, after making the initial move to talk to someone, after just saying how I feel and what’s going on, things as of late are going well. I’m not saying I am fully cured, things go from 0 to 60 like whoa, and the emotions in me either bottled up and never expressed could explode at any given moment. But what I am saying is that I hear from others how they felt and continue on from there, seeing what can be done about it. 


I’ve read about a few saying that they enjoy my streaming and how my presence has helped them feel comfortable and relaxed and even inspired to keep on going in life. Even if I am worried that I have done something wrong, being able to read how much I have changed their lives or helped improve it makes me feel so thrilled that I am doing something right, that something I am working on is good. I kept on streaming because I wanted to make people who feel the same way I do, depressed, anxious, stressed, or traumatized to come over, relax, and feel entertained by my stream. Having a free show to enjoy, without being a douche, because we know about those who wanted to raise their follow number or be a troll, and give support anyway they can. Prior to the pandemic, I am attending college online and still am, going for a bachelor's degree in Game Design, and have participated in video game events and tournaments, even having a console moment with the party organizer over in the OS NYC Twitch event. I chat with friends from time to time, join a large number of community channels, over about 30 if I recall, but only support a few, with the exception of 3 because of my university, and be myself. I even planned on traveling to Las Vegas for EVO and even planning on a surprise party event when COVID ends. 


I do worry about my friends when something happens to them to the point I feel like I need to jump in somehow, willing to message them about their day and try to keep a constant run on coming back to them and keeping them company. Sometimes I am good at it, other times I need to work on it. But I make it a mission, that while I feel the depressing emotion of not being good enough, of being used by family or people, of being too pathetic to date other women or have a girlfriend or fiance, of being too flamboyant to others, of being boring or such; I make it a mission to entertain people, keep them smiling, make them forget the worries of the world, of what people say, of what people have done. I make it a mission to be there for someone when I am live and when I am offline. I may not have all the answers in the world, and I am not a certified doctor, that’s someone you need to speak up to with. But I do my best to make an enjoyable time. Because without you living, without you being in this world, who knows what kind of impact you have on someone. You are important just like I am.


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