With the year coming to a close, it feels like everyone is patting themselves on the backs for whatever major accomplishments they achieved during 2018. Every time you log onto social media, you'll notice that someone got engaged this year or somebody landed their dream job. And oh look, Susan lost 30 pounds. You go, Susan!
And even though most of us would like to be happy for our friends and family members who are getting their shit together, it can be difficult to really feel that happiness when we reflect on our own year — especially those of us who struggle with mental illness on a day-to-day basis.
Sure, getting out of bed in the morning may seem like a groundbreaking accomplishment to us, but try posting that on your Facebook timeline. (I can hear the Baby Boomers crying "damn Millennials" already…)
What a lot of people don't understand is that, for people living with mental illness, even the little goals can seem like mountains. And when we get to the top of them, we deserve to celebrate too.
So, even though your Facebook friends may not be congratulating you for washing your hair or cleaning your apartment, I am.
If you suffer through the whims of your messed up brain every single day and still manage to get anything done, kudos to you. You deserve to pat yourself on the back for that, this year and every other year.
As someone whose own depression and anxiety has hit some very high points this year, I want to emphasize that your mental illness doesn't define you. It doesn't determine your worth.
Just because your victories are smaller than others', that doesn't make them less valuable. Small victories are still victories.
And there's always time for bigger victories. You won't be down forever. When you're feeling better, you'll start performing better again.
In the meantime, be kind to yourself. You may not have accomplished everything you wanted to this year, but you can in time. In fact, I'm willing to bet that you will.