I also have two mental illnesses–depression and anxiety. I was diagnosed with depression 20 years ago, and I’ve probably had it all my life. The anxiety is new. The official diagnosis on that one came only in February of this year. On this blog, I will share it’s like to have this dual diagnosis. I hope that, in sharing my experiences, that I can let other people who have mental illness know that they are not alone. There’s a lot of us out there, more than most people realize.
I’m also hoping that this blog will be helpful to people whose friends and loved ones have mental illnesses. I’ll be the first to admit that we ask a lot of you, and we don’t make it easy to deal with us. But honestly, many of you do and say the wrong things. I’ve been told a lot of stupid things by well-meaning people. Do this exercise. Take this vitamin. Eat this. Don’t eat that. Pray more. I’ve heard it all. In fact this blog’s name is an homage to the most ridiculous piece of advice I’ve ever received. After I revealed my depression to a friend, she told me that I would certainly be cured, “if only I smiled more.”
If only it could be that simple. It isn’t. I’m not always smiling. But that doesn’t mean I’m not hopeful. Along with sharing my own experiences, I intend this blog to be a resource for people looking for helpful information on support groups, or tips on just getting through the day when you don’t even want to get out of bed.
I may not always smile. But I’ll always try to help others cope–even if they’re New York Yankee fans.
Hang in there,