Depression comes in all shapes, forms and sizes. It is not uniform, it is unpredictable and in my opinion no two people with depression are the same.

There are so many branches of “Mental Illness”, a term I don’t care for – which I will come back to, that you can’t just pin a label on someone. I don’t know who created the graphic below, but kudos to them, because this is as close to the truth as you can get. Everyone is different.

Circling back to Mental Illness, I personally believe it is this term that puts the stigma on people. I prefer Mental Health, because that is exactly what one is striving for, a state of good mental health. It is time to Stop/End the Stigma of Depression and it’s various branches, because there is no room for shaming when it comes to Mental Health. Let us work towards being the hand that guides and comforts.

My hope for Shellbell in the Moment is that by chronicling my journey through depression -the ups, the downs, the swirls, the spirals- it will help people that don’t understand we’re not walking around with highly contagious moods. Instead my hope is to show people that we, who suffer from dinged up mental health, are just like everyone else, but that some days we have to try hard…or just try reaaally hard, period.

My main hope, however, is to help people on their own journeys. I was fortunate enough to have people help me on mine, and now that I am healing the parts of my life that triggered the depression that runs on both sides of my family, I want to reach out and be a hand that helps others and help others bridge the gap between surviving and thriving.