Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 17 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!

Monday, January 28, 2008

coming up

I think I am heading up the sides of the slippery slope of my rut. Rather than the slip-n-slide cliffs of a few days back, my rut now is less angled, less wet. The footholds are occasionally slick but sometimes firm. I washed the dishes--a firm foothold. I scarfed down 1/4 pan of brownies topped with a pint of ice cream--"Look out below!" I took Puck for a short run--good footing. I couldn't organize my meds, put away those damn clothes, or finish a work project--oops, I slipped. But, hey, I will take a shallow, damp rut over a steep, soaked cliff any day of the week!
Progress, not perfection.

Progress, not perfection. Wow! I never could or would have been satisfied with that a few years ago. It's not something I could have even wrapped my mind around. Sure, I may have been able to say it. I could certainly teach it. It was okay for you. But me--progress not perfection? NO WAY! Tolerating, even embracing progress, and letting go of perfection is another example of this horrible illness positively impacting and changing my character and my life. Remarkable.

I hate the illness.
I am grateful for the character-building it has forced upon me.

1 comment:

Erica said...

You have been such an incredible source of inspiration, understanding, and wisdom for me, etta! I randomly found your blog a few weeks ago and subscribed to it, but just yesterday began reading your blog from the beginning.

Each post you wrote spoke right to my heart and my experience, as I have severe clinical depression. I was diagnosed September 2012, but I have been battling the symptoms since November 2007 - symptoms that, because they were undiagnosed until last fall, increased in severity as time passed to the excruciating point they are at today.

And this post in particular - "Progress, not perfection!" I, too, would never have fathomed saying such a thing, even just a year ago. This is now my mantra, and though it's just been a day, it has already been helping!

Anyways, I wanted you to know that, though I barely know you and you know nothing about me, I have found in your writing a kindred spirit who has the same shitty disease as I and knows precisely what kind of hell it takes us through. And seeing that there is someone else out there who is going through exactly the same thing as me, and who HAS been able to control it and fight it and live with it, to know that concretely, is huge for me. I don't feel so alone in this fight, anymore; I feel more confident that I'll be able to win this fight.

And, reading your blog has inspired me to write about my experience with depression! So far, only a handful of people know I have this disease; I'm not ashamed of it, but there's no need for everyone to know, you know? (Of course you do.) But now, I want to write about it, because if I can help someone like you've helped me. . . well, that's what it's all about, right? I'm working on that post right now, actually, and am planning to post it once the term ends (I'm a sophomore in college).

I am just getting into May 2008, and look forward to continue reading your past and present posts and getting to know you. We'll keep fighting the good fight together, eh? :)