Recently, I celebrated my second anniversary with depression. I know it sounds absurd. Depression isn’t some occasion to praise but trust me, it is. In this blog, I will tell you how and why. So tighten your seat belts we are going on a roller coaster ride of past and present emotions.:)
Since my childhood, I have suffered a lot regarding my family issues. I have never had space to myself for quite an extended period, and I never complained because I never knew what is in store for me next. My mother, my strongest pillar, always told me to be positive and celebrate each day as if it’s the last because life is too short. Trust me, she and I have been through a lot. We are each other’s support system.
When I was in my teens, I had quite a rough time coping. I had no friends around except at school. I am not the type of person to share my grief/sorrow or feelings. I am an introvert and focused on my studies to score well in school. After all, I had to make my mother proud as it was her blood, sweat, and tears that paid my school fees.
My point is my depression started early when I was ten or eleven years old. No one knew what I was going through; including me. No one educated us about mental health at that time. This continued after graduation and well into my career. It wasn’t until November 13, 2018, when I realized I AM NOT WELL, I NEED HELP. For fourteen years I was depressed, helpless, demotivated, lonely (Still am, LOL!) but in 2018, I was done being restless. I couldn’t fake my smile anymore. I sought help. That’s when the journey began and I was diagnosed with clinical depression.
For the initial few months of 2018 and the year following, I was dealing with prescribed psychiatric drugs and anti-depressants. I have very blurry memories of those two years, but since the day I chose not to take medicines and switch to a psychologist, my life has been going on the right track. I am proud to say that. My therapist helped me to think and act properly after all the harm I have done both physically and mentally to myself. It was in September 2020 that I met with a psychologist for the first time. It’s been just two and a half months and she has created so much positive energy around me that I became friends with my mind.
Yes, you heard it right. I made a friend who was my biggest enemy―depression. I am not saying that I don’t have hardships anymore. I am still struggling, but not like the way I used to when my struggles initially started.
It may sound odd, but when November 13, 2020, rolled around I decided to celebrate because, why not? Why not make depression feel weak?!? Why not let it get confused as to why am I happy and celebrating such a cruel thing? If you fight it, you make it feel less worthy and perhaps it will go away sooner or later. That’s what I did with depression; I blew out two candles on a cake because now I am proud of being a depression survivor.
This was my little secret of how to battle depression and celebrating it. I want you, who suffer, to know that you are stronger than you think. Hardships are part of life, but only you know how to make it into a celebration because that’s how it loses power. It can be overcome, when you show how powerful and strong you are.
I’m recommending to you strongly that you get up, keep going, and remind yourself that it’s okay to rest, to process, and to give yourself space. Only YOU can do this; others can only be a guide.
I will end this with a quote from a fellow survivor-“Have a beautiful day/night ahead. Be kind to yourself. You defeated all the odds just to be in the world. Then you went on to survive all your worst days. It’s pretty incredible — what a miracle. Well done” — Matt Haig.
Take care; I send you all hugs from afar. See you next time and until then, stay strong.
~ Parika B. is our international guest blogger from India
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