What’s the single most important thing I accomplished in 2010?

An easy one for me.

2010 was the year in which I overcame the fear of prejudice, stigma and of being labelled and finally admitted to friends, family and colleagues that I have depression. There were many reasons why I felt this was my moment and whilst it hasn’t all been plain sailing, I don’t regret it for one minute.

It sounds dramatic, but since my admission last May, my life has changed completely both at work and at home. I am now involved in lots of depression-related activities with my prime target to eradicate the stigma associated with mental illness and depression and to help others come to terms with this illness. All I have achieved towards this end in the last year is dedicated to everyone suffering with depression and mental illness, and to encourage them to hang in there, keep calm and keep going.

It will get better but you have to believe.

Undoubtedly the best thing about my admission however is that I have at long last found my tribe.  I now belong to a large group of like-suffering wonderful people who I now count as some of my best friends because of our mutual association and understanding of depression. There is nothing like peer support to help deal with this illness as it can be a very lonely place and friends who genuinely understand the illness and it’s varied unpredictable symptoms are precious indeed.

Thank goodness for that moment of courage and thank you to all my new friends. I can finally be me.

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