…makes you stronger.
Kelly Clarkson once told me that little nugget of wisdom. Well, Kelly, I hope that’s true. Because Depression hasn’t killed me, yet. But, I sure as hell* hope that it’s made me stronger.
( *I don’t swear on principle, but sometimes when you’re writing, swear words used in moderation help make a point. )
In one of my more recent blog posts, “You’re Better Off Dead,” I also wrote about this topic. Apparently, I need to reiterate.
People who live with Depression are often misjudged to be weak, selfish attention-seekers. I have never in my life heard a statement that is more false than that one.
Allow me to paint you a picture:
Imagine that you are fighting by yourself in a war against an army that is 7 billion strong. The other army has all the weapons available to them; you, on the other hand, have only a plastic fork and a metal trash can lid to defend you. Clearly, you don’t stand much of a chance. But, you, being the innovative person that you are, use the fork to dig yourself a hole. You jump in the hole, and use the metal trashcan lid to cover the hole and protect yourself from the bombs and bullets that are raining down on you.
This is Depression. The bombs and bullets are life and everything it throws at you. The fork is the voice inside your head telling you to fight like hell to survive—a voice that can be silenced so easily. The metal trashcan lid is your own personal sanctuary, wherever or whatever it may be.
My personal sanctuary is my bed. On my good days, it takes me an hour to get out of bed after I wake up (and that’s only if I have someplace to be). I’d much rather curl up in my bed, hide under the blankets, and not face life. But I get out of bed. I face life. I fight with my plastic fork, and even when I am too weak to take one more step in that marathon called Life, I do anyway. Because even though it feels as though I am sometimes breathing through a straw, my lungs are still filled with air. And as long as my lungs are still filled with air, I refuse to be another teenager lost to Suicide.
Because I easily could have been another Suicide statistic.
But, I chose life.
I chose to fight. And even though I don’t go through every day undamaged, even though my Depression causes me to regret somethings I do, I live. I do not suffer from Depression; I am living with Depression.
One day, I will die. But it will because I lived.
Depression will not be the death of me.
Depression: “What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger.”