I recently had a poem published in a mag for mental awareness. It is geared toward people with disabilities to learn how to write poetry as a tool for therapy. Working through their depression and anxiety.
I personally suffer from depression and sometimes it’s hard to even get out of bed. I lack the ambition to do anything. Withdrawn into my own little space within my head.
I have been using poetry as a tool for many years now. My earliest poems have a lot of roller-coaster mood swings. From the low desperation of suicidal thoughts to the high-on-life phase of bipolar.
I remember when I was first diagnosed with bipolar depression. It was the lowest time in my life. Never having been diagnosed until the age of twenty-two. Couldn’t understand Why Me? My family did not understand it either. Placing the blame on themselves and feeling shame that their daughter was crazy. Or was she?
The point is many people suffer from depression and anxiety. Still very much misunderstood and often undiagnosed. In my family, most of our siblings have depression and anxiety.
I had the opportunity to be featured on their webpage. I wrote a whole article about feelings of and emotions. And I realized that others suffering could be helped to feel better with my poetry. It was meant to be read not hidden under the bed. I caught myself feeling shame. That people would know. I’d be opening up that part of my world for all to see. I felt vulnerable. And I questioned why I had submitted it there. I guess I thought it was going to be a place I could identify with others and understand myself better.
Some of my poems would fit like a glove plus I’d learn about the struggles of others. Even in today’s society depression is much understood. It would be nice if someone could wear my shoes.
I hope with this article that others will be helped and understood. That people would stop placing labels and get to the core of the problem. I don’t use disability as an excuse. I embrace it and treat it like any other disease. I am no longer a victim but a survivor. It’s a matter of perspective to stay positive and hard work.
Today I am stable and enjoying each day as if it’s my last. One day at a time. So I remain humble and count my blessings every day. My challenge for readers is to try to educate themselves about depression. Don’t look down on or judge because you never know it could be you next time.
Stop labeling depression as crazy. I’m no different than you. I get by with a little help from my friends.
In the meanwhile pick up that paper and pen and express yourself.
Happy penning © Eva Marie Ann Cagley
Very important message and I honor your creative expression and courage in sharing your experiences-and you are not alone. So many people are dealing with depression and anxiety in our culture and around the world. The more we listen and read, and see things inside ourselves, the more we have an understanding of the emotional/mental realities of another human being. Speaking up and sharing are essential. Thank you for your prose, your poems, your essays, and mostly your courage in speaking your lived experiences-Eva!
Thanks so much for reading Laura. Much appreciated! You are such a nice upbeat person and I love your zeal for life.
Powerful message my friend !
Thanks so much Larry fir dropping in!