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The Surprising Way a Health Class Changed My Perspective on Depression


For as long as I can remember, depression has colored the way I see myself. I have let insecurity and jealousy define who I am. I allowed the brokenness of my mind to make me hate myself.

Health class came in the middle of what seemed like a terrible week. It started off regular — warm up, quiz, notes, the usual. Towards the end of the class, we started discussing self-esteem.

My self-esteem has recently been at an all-time low. Between depression and gossip, I didn’t see the point in loving myself.

Our teacher had us do an activity where we all got a blank sheet of paper, everyone went to others’ papers and wrote one nice adjective you felt described them. Personally, I was expecting a lot of “nice,” “cool” and “funny” — the go-to cop-outs. When I got back to my paper, I was floored at the words — hilarious, fun, sweet, good listener. I don’t see myself that way and I certainly didn’t believe anyone else did.

When you struggle with depression, it robs you of self-esteem. My teacher will probably never know how much she impacted the way I see myself.

To people like me, who don’t know their worth: even if you don’t believe it, it’s there.

If others see me that way, maybe I could too.

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Photo by Jiří Wagner on Unsplash