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I Want to Show What Depression Looks Like So No One Else Struggles in Silence

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I’m often asked about how I feel since I came out about my mental illness to the world and the answer is always the same: I’ve never felt better.

I was instantly reminded of my favorite quote from Tyrion Lannister of “Game of Thrones,” when he said: “Never forget what you are; the rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can never be used to hurt you.”

I saw the world from a totally different angle and that’s all it took, a change of perspective. I found that all of that energy used to hide, to wear that mask, was draining me, but now I hide no more. As cliche as it sounds, I guess this is what it feels like when people say they got a second lease on life. Through your weaknesses, you find strength and through accepting who you are, you’ll find that you’ll truly begin to love yourself, the good and the bad.

It was inevitable that people were going to change how they behaved around me. I thought I was going to become the local charity case; I have never been so wrong. It’s like, in a day, the world showed me a newfound respect for standing up. I was dubbed brave by many. It didn’t go to my head though, I mean, how could it? I found that there was no ego in what I did, just pride for finally standing up to the demon that has dogged me for years. At last, I’m not alone in my fight.

For the first time in years, I’m excited. Every night, I go to sleep feeling psyched because I can’t possibly wait to see what tomorrow will bring me. I find that with each passing day I grow a little bit stronger and even though I may have my bad days or bad weeks in some situations, I learned that nothing is permanent, especially if you’re willing to fight for change.

Ultimately, we are all just human. All of us are individuals and none of us come with a user’s manual. You can make mistakes, but that’s OK, as long as you learn from them. I finally know who I am and I’m on my way to refining myself to be the best I could be.

Look at you; you’re still here. Hold your head a little higher and tell me you don’t feel a little different.

The Mighty is asking its readers the following: Describe the moment someone changed the way you think about disability and/or disease. If you’d like to participate, please send a blog post to Please include a photo for the piece, a photo of yourself and 1-2 sentence bio.

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Originally published: April 14, 2015
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