Day 75 of 100 intentional, reflective steps
Depression. Anxiety. These are now socially acceptable maladies. While not as common as the cold, or as publicized as cancer it is at least within grasp of understanding. We no longer have to gate check these illnesses when we enter into personal conversation. However, we start to get a little air sick when talking about mental illness, even though depression and anxiety fit well within the definition. And we certainly are not progressive enough to converse about seriously heavy baggage like suicidal ideation or homicidal intent.
How did that happen? How did we go from a “rub some dirt in it” or “shake it off” view of depression to accepting medication and therapies as part of our culture? Better yet, what will it take for polite society to view the terminology and diagnosis of mental illness as just another of life’s challenges rather than a scarlet letter? I’m anxious for that day. I want that day to come soon, er. I would really love to be able to not worry (says I who is publishing my thoughts on the world wide web) about what people think of me when they find out I have been hospitalized at a psych facility for an extended amount of time, that I see a therapist twice a week or have been diagnosed with permanent mental illness?
This is my ambition. To write and talk about this enough that we can live more authentically and openly about the things in life that challenge us, including our mental health.