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, June 17, 2010

It's on.

I've made my decision. I'm going to do it. I'm going to follow through with my plan and swim, bike and run this Sunday. I know I will be absolutely terrified at the start of the race, but at least it won't be a surprise! I'm relieved to have made a decision, and I feel good about giving this a try.

The decision was really made for me yesterday. I took up a friend's offer to swim across a local lake with a boat following us. The moment I jumped into the deep water, my heart started racing. Things were not looking good.

On our first trip out and back (approximately 600-700 yards), I had to stop frequently. I was panicky. I could barely breathe, etc, etc... I took a break on the dock for about ten minutes before I tried again. That's when the miracle happened.

Miraculously, I settled down and swam for long stretches without stopping. The first trip out and back took 14 minutes. The second one only took ten. I was still scared when I had to stop, but I handled it. My breathing was more relaxed. My heart rate was slower. I just swam. By the time I got out of the water, I knew I had to give this thing a try.

I swam again today, across another lake, with some other friends. Today was a little tougher. The lake was much rougher, and the boater wasn't nearly as close to me. My fear got the best of me a couple times. I had to climb out for about ten minutes again, but I got back in. I swam for about 25 minutes total. I feel a little less sure of my decision today, but I know I'll feel worse if I sit this out.

I'm getting there. I'm still afraid, but I'm facing the fear. I think I'll be able to get through it, but I'm going to be okay if I don't. (I think.) I know I'll give it everything I've got on Sunday. If fear gets in my way, which I'm sure it will, I'll just have to do my best to give it the boot. Wish me luck! And thanks for all your support.


Maggie Beth said...


Rest peacfully in your decision.

You are safe...

Keep focusing on the miracle day, and how that felt...the water is not trying to hurt you ~ it is carrying you.......flow with it, Etta...just flow peacefully with it.

I'm proud of you! ~ Your decision to swim or not, does not determine my pride in you ~ it is who you have become that makes me proud of you.

You have done the hard work and you are reaping the rewards.

Anonymous said...

Good luck, Etta! It sounds like you're doing everything you can to prepare yourself for the race-- I'm sure you'll do fine! I'm rooting for you.

Wishing you well,

Divas said...

YAYY! Cheering you on from the blogosphere sidelines!

Maggie Beth said...

OKAY! Tomorrow? Still peaceful!? Holding good thoughts and much pride!