***Rejection is defined as the act of rejecting or the state of being rejected. To be rejected is to refuse to accept, submit to, believe, or make use of.*** Most of us here that have struggled with PKU since the onset of our lives know and acknowledge that PKU and depression go hand-in-hand. It is, for the most part, a "given" that high PHE levels can and do (most times) lead to bouts of depression in a PKUer. High PHE levels decrease production of a key neurotransmitter important for mood maintenance, serotonin. WOW! I almost sounded pretty dang smart there for a minute (ha-ha). So, where am I going with all this??? How does all this fit into "rejection"??? Good questions. Well, the depression I experience, which could or could not be like yours, but it tells on an almost DAILY basis "WILL BE REJECTED." It creeps in and tells me "I'm not accepted." Depression and rejection can be tricky persistent little creatures. I can guarantee life with me is NO picnic and my depression and constant fear of being rejected causes me to need CONSTANT reassurance (take a moment and feel for my husband, he gets the bulk of these...poor man). I suppose, for the most part, it doesn't help that in my mind I know that the majority of my family doesn't "get me" nor will they probably ever read this. ***If you are a family member (and I consider a vast array of my friends as family) and read this I THANK YOU for trying to understand my ramblings and life's musings while I hope keeping an open mind to understand a little to what life is like for me. *** Rejection has ALWAYS housed itself deep in the corners of my mind. When I was in school I used to write all the time, everyday, nearly like an obsession. Seriously, I have a manuscript I've been working on for YEARS, like 15 of them. I pick it up, read through it, edit it, add to it, but then depression and rejection sneaks in and convinces me it's not good enough, no one would want to read it. So, I tuck it away (Okay, so ONCE only ONCE I burned it and had to rewrite the WHOLE thing again, KRISTINA, haha) because, frankly, I thrust enough rejection onto myself I certainly don't need from anyone else. With the encouragement of good friends and family, the help of restoring my PKU diet health, and my new found drive and desire to help others with PKU ( and probably to some dismay of others, lol) I have taken up the "pen" again. I have challenged myself to write, at least, one blog entry a week. Trust me when I say this is a monumental task I assure you. I constantly check throughout the weeks to see how many hits my writing gets and ask those around me if they happened to read and usually hear "you have a blog?? Why didn't anyone tell me this?" So at this point, I want to say a special thanks to Sarah and Steph, I know I have before, but they are two friends that I KNOW read and always give feed back...THANKS GIRLS!! Then I must remind myself NUMBERS ARE NOT IMPORTANT, if I help one person, PKUer or not, to feel understood and not alone in this giant world I have then done what I have set out to do in the beginning. To those I offend and don't help I apologize, but honestly, I find this new practice therapeutic for myself so I'll probably keep doing it. However, you should note, that your rejection mutes in comparison to the voices in my own head that echo like sounding bugles keeping me up at night while my family sleeps telling me, "I will never be good enough," "I will ALWAYS be flawed," and lastly, "my family will ALWAYS have to endure my quarks and idiocracies for which they will NEVER fully and truly understand or be able to explain to another human being." So, with that said, I turn over a new leaf and take a cue from good ol' Sly Stallone from when he said, "I take rejection as someone blowing a bugle in my ear to wake me up and get going rather that retreat." This applies no matter if the depression and rejection comes from within me or from outside forces. I WILL OVERCOME AND BATTLE ANOTHER DAY!