Depression is not a weakness. It is not a flaw. It is not a crutch. Depression does not define a person. It is not a label on a prescription bottle.
Depression: The insidious monster within. It can be mild or it can be severe. It can also take many shapes and names (manic depression, seasonal depression, chronic depression). Its symptoms will vary from person to person.
The serpent slithers into the lives of those it inflicts, poisoning one’s mind, body and sense of self. It manipulates all of a person’s thought processes, seeping into every aspect of life and affecting a person’s decision making process.
What are my sources? Experience; first hand knowledge is the greatest tool. It was my greatest obstacle, greatest battle and greatest achievement.
Though depression is terrible and I would never wish it on my enemy, it has made me stronger. It has made me strive to be an advocate for those that are depressed or in need.
And sadly, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of 10 people suffer from depression. I was, and am, one of those 10 percent.
National Anxiety and Depression Awareness Week this year is May 5-11. It is something that people brush under the rug; but for me and to those that suffer, it is a week of empowerment.
It is deadly and disruptive and deserves awareness. From May 5 to the 11 I encourage you to take the time to think about someone who may be struggling or hiding their depression or anxiety. It is a time to become informed.
Depression is not a label, nor a flaw. It is a secret strength. It is an everyday fight.