So lately I’ve been contending with recurring symptoms and anxiety. This in part explains my delay in posting – which on January 1, was to be the beginning of my fixed posting schedule – the date I officially launched stigmacrush.com. So I’m three days behind. Yes, I do get recurring visits from symptoms that at one time incapacitated me: guilt, regret and at times, believe it or not, suicidality. There are no shortages of life’s challenges and when things feel incredibly overwhelming, your mind and thinking patterns can subconsciously – and automatically – resort back to that dark state, shaped by the many years of depression-induced conditioning. But this is ok because I fully recognize my symptoms and I intimately understand and respect them. And this enables me to process them proactively and responsibly.
By proactively, I mean that I continue to work toward my goals: I have completed a first draft of my book and intend to publish electronically this month. Over Christmas, I opened up to my in-laws about my disorder for the first time since my diagnosis five years ago and provided each family member a copy of my manuscript. This was the highlight of my Holidays because that night was a beautiful and empowering experience (one I will share in a separate post).
As mentioned, I’ve launched my website. I have also made considerable strides at work: I was profiled in the mental wellness section of our department’s newsletter last month; I’ve signed up for the peer support program designed to help those struggling with their mental health; and in November, was referred to the national speakers’ forum on mental health, which I am very excited about because public speaking is one of my goals.
So on the one hand, I am feeling some very familiar symptoms however the progress I am making toward my said goals – and the excitement that I feel – renders my symptoms futile. I am experiencing this in real time – meaning, right now – and I wanted to capture and share this moment with you to demonstrate the healing power of creating goals (and striving to achieve them) in the context of overcoming symptoms of depression.
It is an incredible feeling!