When I started this blog, I had no idea I would be at over 18000 views. I didn’t expect anyone to read it and I definitely didn’t expect to have managed to post every day for this long. In the beginning I simply wanted to chronicle my every day life in hopes that others could relate and maybe break down some of the stigma that surrounds mental health. I’m not sure if I have succeeded in my goals. I have allowed this to evolve into more of a motivational blog and less of a focus on the negatives of my suffering with depression and anxiety. I didn’t expect to have my wife leave me, or to almost die from alcohol consumption. I didn’t expect to suddenly be a single dad or to get into the STAT program. I didn’t think that I would have the resilience to push through this difficult chapter in my life and I never thought I could smile. In going through my older posts and comparing them to the recent ones I can see a definite shift in my attitude towards life and towards my mental health. In the beginning I tended to surrender to the depression and anxiety and assume that I couldn’t do anything about it. I focused on the negatives and didn’t see a lot of hope within. It’s funny how a terrible thing like my marriage ending could help knock some sense into me and get me on the right track to living a more fulfilling and positive life. I know that being in the STAT program while it happened was a huge reason I was able to push forward and using a lot of the things I learned during that 5 weeks has helped keep me on the good path. When my marriage first ended I was told that taking responsibility for what I was feeling and allowing myself to grieve would help speed up the healing process. One of the things they teach you in STAT is to not judge situations as good or bad and to merely accept them and move on. It is a hard thing to do, but not impossible. I tried hard to put that into practice right away. It was difficult and I wasn’t always accepting without judgement, but with practice it became easier and easier. Now I’m in a place where I can be fine on my own and can look forward to the future. I can smile back at girls without the guilt I felt at first, I can take time for myself and not think about her at all. I can interact with her and keep my cool both during and after. I can still recall the first few weeks, laying on the floor in tears after every phone call or drop off of the kids. Now I don’t even bat an eye. I’ve come a long way and I’m proud of that feat. It’s ok to be proud of it, too.
I would like to thank all of you who loyally read and have supported me throughout this process. It’s somehow comforting to know that people come by everyday and read what I have to say when there are hundreds of thousands of blogs out there to read. I hope that my words can somehow motivate and inspire you in your own life and I hope that my new commitment to a positive mental attitude will rub off on a few of you and maybe give someone who is without hope and glimpse of it. Thank you!