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!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

taking the road less traveled

A visionary, that's what she said. Visionary? Wow. She was halfway through her next sentence before my brain could register the word, digest its meaning, and spit out my dumbfounded response. I told her I was damn sure visionary was a word never before linked with my name. It was hours later when I really understood the compliment I had been paid.

We had been talking about my business ideas, rehashing the previous week's negative rehab services appointment, and reviewing my goals. I was detailing how I needed to shape my goals to fit within my limits--the limits forced upon me by this illness. The visionary compliment landed here. She explained "visionary" by saying that I was, "certainly taking the road less traveled." (one of my favorite poems, by the way!) I am looking for something, a job, that fits, rather than contorting into something that will likely never fit. She's right. I am on the less popular path.

That fact is I have been on this path for seven years. Aloud I said, "I was placed on this path. I didn't have a choice!" What her comment highlighted, however, is that now I am taking the less worn path. I hadn't realized I'd been doing that!

When...when did I start taking this path? When did I stop fighting? When did I start going with the punch rather than hitting depression back? Over time, something changed. I changed. Maybe depression got to choose one path over another, but today I choose whether to take the given path or to sit resentfully and die. It is with great gratitude and humility that I choose to move.

See you all in the clearing up ahead...

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