Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 16 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

my friend Pete

He is one of the most amazing people I have ever met. With great humor and candor, he'll regale a crowd with horror stories of his teenage depression and hospitalization at Mayo Clinic, his career as a motorcycle drag-racer--including the broken bones, how he fell into working as an artist for Harley Davidson, and finally how multiple sclerosis PALES in comparison to the pain of depression. Keep in mind, he is making these comments after wobbling with assistance to his chair, as MS has stolen his balance, energy, muscles, and now finally, his vision. Yet MS pales in comparison? While I understand it, I am sure it is a powerful message most normies have difficulty comprehending. Pete is a larger-than-life advocate for those of us with depression, and it pisses me off that MS dares to slow him down, too! It is a cruel, cruel world sometimes...
Pete and I met at a speaking engagement for my local NAMI affiliate a few years ago. While I speak a few times a year locally, Pete traipses around the world sharing his educational message with thousands, maybe millions, of people. He is a role model to which I aspire, and therefore I boldly sent him a link to my new blog in January. Pete passed the link on to Access Press, a disability organization and newspaper based in Minneapolis. Access Press asked yesterday if they could publish, "Don't call me a Consumer!" (ummmmm...let me think about that... HA!) So thank you, Pete. I am incredibly humbled and honored. Thank you.

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