Written by Jan, a guest writer

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I was born paralyzed from the knee down and with other nerve damage. Depression for me came about in high school, but I believe it was more situational for me than for others. For me, I was often down because of things I couldn’t do.

I was in counseling for over 10 years and while it helped a little to be able to get things out, I was never really given tools that I needed to overcome it. It actually wasn’t until 2017 when I decided to make a change. I stopped the weekly therapy and hired a life coach. One of the things I am working on is to stop trying to be “normal.” I am working toward accepting my disability and my limitations.

I still get depressed often, but I have found that when I am in that depression, being able to identify that it is depression and not who I am has helped tremendously with me being able to lead a more “normal” life than ever before. Facing it, saying to myself “this is not permanent, this is my brain messing with me” is the best thing I could do for myself. It takes tremendous practice and it by no means “cures” the depression, its still there and it still gets to me.

However, I’m not taken down by it nearly as much anymore by looking in the mirror and identifying it as depression – not life.