Author: Kerri Wojcik

A Journal from Depression

When I was a teenager, my father was diagnosed with depression and eventually bipolar disorder. Depression was a new concept for me, I didn’t know much about it, how to talk about it, or how to help my dad. As I entered adulthood, I had some personal moments with what I could then identify as depression or anxiety, mostly when big change was coming. Therapy always helped and I wouldn’t say I was ever clinically depressed in those years, though it was confusing because I worried I had inherited depression from my dad. It wasn’t until a few months after my first child was born that I felt the depths and horror that is true depression. My husband and I had tried for years to have a baby, and when it finally happened we were overjoyed. I was very aware of my risk for postpartum depression with my genetic predisposition and the fact that I had experienced mild bouts before. But when I survived the beginnings of motherhood and remained happy, I thought I was in the clear. As the months wore on however, I started to sink. Everything became hard and overwhelming, day-to-day life became a struggle. The defining moment for me was leaving the house in tears one day and telling my husband that something had to change, I couldn’t be a mother to this baby anymore,...

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Grief is not Depression

I am in grief, I’m in it deep. It’s been two months since my brother died and just over a year since my father died. I hadn’t fully processed losing my dad, was cautiously counting down to the one year anniversary of his passing, when BAM!, my brother died at 29 years old. The initial shock is over and as my mom said to me yesterday, the reality and finality is now setting in. I’ve read many descriptions of grief that compare it to waves in the ocean. They come on strong and often at first, then gradually get...

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Family, Love, Addiction, and Loss

On May 14, my brother Kyle died of a heroin overdose at 29 years old.   I have been struggling with how to write this article, to bring light to the constant struggles of those with mental illness and addiction, while at the same time honoring his memory, because he was so much more than his illnesses. In her blog A Mothership Down, Liz reflects on the loss of her mom with these words “The sum of my mother’s life was so much more than the hand that cancer dealt her in her last difficult years. The sum of all of...

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